'Zombie' homes haunt Florida neighborhoods

By Alison Fitzgerald and Jared Bennett

Neighborhoods devastated by thousands of abandoned homes as banks fail to follow through on foreclosures.

Excerpts from this story referencing "spokeswoman":

"… bstantial way for banks to redress the harm caused to communities,” said spokeswoman Nicole Navas. Jacksonville, St. Petersburg and many other cities nationwi …"

OPINION: favors for special interests

By Wendell Potter

Insurers, drug companies get what they want from Congress; the public, not so much

Excerpts from this story referencing "White House":

"… t industry. Big Pharma essentially blackmailed members of Congress and the White House by threatening to bankroll a huge PR and lobbying campaign to kill health …"

Right-wing groups attempt to dislodge justices in Florida, Iowa

By Chris Young

Supreme court justices in two states are under siege from groups that oppose their rulings.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Politics":

"… association also spent more than $20,000 on radio advertising.Justice Not Politics Action, a nonprofit group created to counter the anti-Wiggins campaign, ha …"

"… ampaign. In October, the national gay-rights organization gave Justice Not Politics Action $100,000.Florida’s ‘spending arms race’The point of contentio …"

"… ke.The three justices have also been getting help from Defend Justice from Politics, another 527 organization. Like Restore Justice, state records show that D …"

"… filings, the group lists just one contributor: “Defend Justice from Politics.”“We’re not hiding” the group’s donors, says Neal Roth, a Miami …"

Aggressive Romney spars with Obama in first debate

By FactCheck.Org

No more practice: Five weeks before Election Day, Obama and Romney debate for first time.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bill Clinton":

"… raise taxes on upper-income persons only to the “rates that we had when Bill Clinton was president.” Actually, many high-income persons would pay more than t …"

"… ealth care costs is at a 50-year low for the past two years.President Bill Clinton used this statistic, correctly, in his speech at the Democratic Natio …"

"… ck to where they were during economically prosperous times under President Bill Clinton. But those making over $250,000 a year would actually pay more than they d …"

"… over $250,000 a year, that we should go back to the rates that we had when Bill Clinton was president, when we created 23 million new jobs, went from deficit to s …"

Aggressive Romney spars with Obama in first debate

By FactCheck.Org

No more practice: Five weeks before Election Day, Obama and Romney debate for first time.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Internal Revenue Service":

"… Medicare Tax on Unearned Income.” American Institute of CPAs. 1 Jul 2011.Internal Revenue Service. “Questions and Answers for the Additional Medicare Tax.” 4 Aug 2012.U …"

In India, verdant terrain conceals clues to a fatal kidney disease

By Sasha Chavkin

How a rare kidney disease is killing laborers and vexing researchers in three countries.

Excerpts from this story referencing "dehydration":

"… nd-stage renal disease in the United States, and is consistent with severe dehydration and toxic poisoning.Yet in other ways Uddanam is different. The research t …"

In Sri Lanka, breakthroughs, setbacks and a spiritual touch

By Sasha Chavkin and Anna Barry-Jester

How a rare kidney disease is killing laborers and vexing researchers in three countries.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Secretary":

"… cts.The cause could be “cadmium or arsenic,” said Rohitha Nanayakkara, Secretary of the National Agrobusiness Council. “But what we say is it can't be fr …"

As kidney disease kills thousands across continents, scientists scramble for answers

By Sasha Chavkin

How a rare kidney disease is killing laborers and vexing researchers in three countries.

Excerpts from this story referencing "disease":

"… neys are failing, and no one knows why.A mysterious form of chronic kidney disease — CKD — is afflicting thousands of people in rural, agricultural commu …"

"… er from diabetes and high blood pressure, the usual risk factors for renal disease. They experience a rare form of kidney damage, known as tubulo-interstitia …"

"… They experience a rare form of kidney damage, known as tubulo-interstitial disease, consistent with severe dehydration and toxic poisoning.Other common links …"

"… e used heavily, and communities drink local groundwater. In each case, the disease began surging in the 1990s.Despite a decade of research in each affected r …"

Thousands of sugar cane workers die as wealthy nations stall on solutions

By Sasha Chavkin and Ronnie Greene

Mysterious kidney disease has killed thousands of men in an isolated region of Central America, but why?

Excerpts from this story referencing "Mario Amador":

"… aid. “Not one sugar company gave us permission to study the problem.” Mario Amador, a spokesman for the Nicaraguan sugar industry trade group that represents …"

Methodology

A note of the data and analysis for 'Island of the Widows'

Excerpts from this story referencing "Central America":

"… n the region. …"

"… .The data show that this formula clearly reflects the CKD epidemic. Across Central America in 2009, the most recent year available, 87 percent of male deaths from ki …"

"… Also, WHO data show that while kidney disease grew among women in the four Central American countries used for analysis, the rate of growth was smaller among women t …"

"… he U.S. Renal Data System. But even this increase pales compared to men in Central America. In El Salvador and Nicaragua, the countries where data is complete from 1 …"

Super Congress hauls in super donations as special interests try to influence budget cuts

By Aaron Mehta and Josh Israel

Gang of 12 tasked with cutting budget by $1.5 trillion hauls in big PAC donations

Excerpts from this story referencing "Chris Van Hollen":

"… e was announced, Fresenius made three donations to committee members Reps. Chris Van Hollen ($1,000) and Jim Clyburn ($5,000), along with Sen. Max Baucus ($4,000). Th …"

"… Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas — $22,500Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pa. — $18,000*Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md. — $17,500Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio — $10,000*Sen. John Kyl, R-Ar …"

ANALYSIS: Death panels real and imagined

By Wendell Potter

Congressmen like Phil Gingrey continue to scare foks with talk of death panels, while insurers make real life or death decisions

Excerpts from this story referencing "dialysis":

"… a bunch of bureaucrats decide whether you get care, such as continuing on dialysis or cancer chemotherapy, I guarantee you when you withdraw that the patient …"

VA medical centers in hot water for failing to follow sterilization training

By Laurel Adams

GAO says some VA medical centers aren't following strict sanitation guidelines for reusable medical equipment

Excerpts from this story referencing "Government Accountability Office":

"… rans a year. …"

Lawsuit loans add new risk for the injured

By Binyamin Appelbaum and Ben Hallman

The business of lending to plaintiffs has blossomed over the past decade, part of a growing trend in which banks and hedge funds seeking unt

Excerpts from this story referencing "LawCash":

"… legal loan-sharking.” Colorado filed suit in December against Oasis and LawCash, two of the largest companies, charging them with violating the state’s …"

"… , that lawsuit lenders are not subject to existing lending laws. Oasis and LawCash have now filed suit against Colorado, asking the court to prevent the stat …"

"… e state Senates in New York and Illinois. Harvey Hirschfeld, a founder of LawCash who keeps binders filled with thank-you notes from borrowers on a shelf in …"

"… ou need it.” High rates, low risk Harvey Hirschfeld is a co-founder of LawCash, a company that lends money to people who want to pursue lawsuits. Credit …"

Dispute in Pennsylvania town highlights EPA's coal ash dilemma

By Amy Biegelsen

It was a windy Friday morning last December when Gary Kuklish stepped out of the post office in the tiny coal town of LaBelle, PA, looked do

Excerpts from this story referencing "dialysis":

"… er. Smith is going in for a kidney biopsy this month and her husband is on dialysis. She worries their health problems come from the coal ash that covers her …"

FDA criticized for accepting free help from company that later won generic OK

By Laurel Adams

The Food and Drug Administration last month issued guidelines for agency staff to follow when drugmakers offer free help during emergencies

Excerpts from this story referencing "Texas":

"… s not mention Momenta Pharmaceuticals, was requested by Rep. Joe Barton of Texas, the senior Republican on the House Energy and Commerce Committee. Barton …"

Kilpatrick not happy with for-profit earmark ban

By Nick Schwellenbach

Remember the March announcement by House Democrats banning earmarks aimed at for-profit entities? Not every Democrat seems to be entirely ha

Excerpts from this story referencing "Jeff Flake":

"… ay have a real shot at getting earmark funding. It was singled out by Rep. Jeff Flake — an earmark critic — as the kind of entity that could get an earmark …"