How Oxford University Shaped Brexit — And Britain’s Next Prime Minister
You turn the pages of yellowing student newspapers from 30 years ago, and there they are, recognisably the same faces that dominate today’s British news. Boris Johnson running for Union president, Michael Gove winning debating contests, Jeremy Hunt holding together the faction-ridden Oxford University Conservative Association (OUCA).
The Rise Of Junk Science
Fake publications are corrupting the world of research—and influencing real news. At the most benign level of the junk industry are papers, published in journals with no effective screening process, that are obvious nonsense.
The Man Who’s Going To Save Your Neighborhood Grocery Store
American food supplies are increasingly channeled through a handful of big companies: Amazon, Walmart, FreshDirect, Blue Apron. What do we lose when local supermarkets go under? A lot — and Kevin Kelley wants to stop that.
If You Feed Them, Will They Vote?
Billionaire presidential candidate Mike Bloomberg is enticing voters with unprecedented amounts of free food and booze — and not the cheap stuff, either. Is the way to a voter’s heart through their stomach?
The One-Traffic-Light Town With Some Of The Fastest Internet In The U.S.
Connecting rural America to broadband is a popular talking point on the campaign trail. In one Kentucky community, it’s already a way of life. McKee, an Appalachian town of about twelve hundred tucked into the Pigeon Roost Creek valley, is the seat of Jackson County, one of the poorest counties in the country.
The Birth-Tissue Profiteers
How well-meaning donations end up fuelling an unproven, virtually unregulated two-billion-dollar stem-cell industry. An industry has sprung up in which specialized clinics offer miracle remedies from poorly understood stem-cell products.
I Stumbled Across A Huge Airbnb Scam That’s Taking Over London
As the short-term rental goldrush gathers pace, Airbnb empires are being rapidly scaled and monetized. This is the curious tale of a man called Christian, the Catholic church, David Schwimmer’s wife, a secret hotel and an Airbnb scam running riot on the streets of London.
The Economics Of Airline Class
The story of the development of airline classes really isn’t the story of how airlines developed more and more luxurious seats, it’s how they cut costs to allow more and more people to fly. It’s also a fascinating demonstration of economics.
How Our Definition Of Middle Class Has–And Hasn’t–Changed In 100 Years
Some of the cultural markers associated with the middle class–like education–have shifted. But its aspirations? Not so much.
The Primal Pleasure And Brutal History Of Sugar
In the Western imagination, sugar is pleasure, temptation, and vice — and in modern history, it is original sin. How a taste for sweetness, developed for survival, became a stand-in for everything good — and evil — about our culture.
How Online Shopping Makes Suckers Of Us All
Will you pay more for those shoes before 7 p.m.? Would the price tag be different if you lived in the suburbs? Standard prices and simple discounts are giving way to far more exotic strategies, designed to extract every last dollar from the consumer.
Down And Out In the Gig Economy
Gig economies are ersatz structures, designed to skirt labor laws and offload risk and expense onto workers themselves. They serve the whims of capital.
The Peruvian Corruption-Buster Bigger Than Mueller
With his implacable pursuit of the presidential trio, the corruption-busting prosecutor José Domingo Pérez has established an international template for how to prosecute former heads of state on graft charges.
When Does An Accident Become A Crime?
While driving through a dangerous curve in East Texas, James Fulton crossed into oncoming traffic and killed a young woman. The cops said the crash was an accident. But the Smith County DA saw it differently.
The Last Giraffes On Earth
The planet’s tallest animal is in far greater danger than people might think. Until recently, giraffes have suffered from surprising scientific neglect. Few researchers have studied them in the wild, so even basic aspects of their lives remain mysterious.
A Trip To The Cirque Of The Unclimbables
It’s among the most beautiful eyefuls of landscape I’ve ever seen — its rock walls more overpowering than Zion’s, in Utah, its evening light more perfect than Hawaii’s, its peaks more menacing than Denali, and its stillness more complete than the deep rainforests of the Olympic Peninsula.
Jeff Pike, Texas’s Own Tony Soprano
Jeff Pike, the head of the infamous Texas-based Bandidos motorcycle club, went on trial in federal court for racketeering. Prosecutors called him a ruthless killer, the man behind one of the deadliest biker shootouts in American history at the Twin Peaks restaurant in Waco. Pike, however, said he was just a good family man.
New Earth Surveillance Tech Is About to Change Everything, Including Us
New high-resolution satellites, AIs, and data tools are going to let us study Earth, and ourselves, in greater detail than ever before. That’s going to come with “unthinkable” problems.
Peter Hotez Vs. Measles And The Anti-Vaccination Movement
Texas is at risk of a deadly measles outbreak, and yet few have been willing to cast blame on the state’s combative anti-vaccine movement. Enter Peter Hotez, an affable, bow-tie-wearing scientist who decided he’d had enough.
How Big Oil And Big Soda Kept A Global Environmental Calamity A Secret For Decades
With new legislation, Sen. Tom Udall is attempting to marshal Washington into a confrontation with the plastics industry, and to force companies that profit from plastics to take accountability for the waste they create. Big Plastic isn’t a single entity. It’s more like a corporate supergroup: Big Oil meets Big Soda.
The Bomb Didn’t Beat Japan… Stalin Did
The US bombed Hiroshima and Nagasaki, when the Japanese finally succumbed to the threat of further nuclear bombardment and surrendered. The support for this narrative runs deep. But there are three major problems with it, and, taken together, they significantly undermine the traditional interpretation of the Japanese surrender.