The Century Foundation is renewing its series #TCFBest to present you with our favorite writing from around the web. Follow us on Twitter @tcfdotorg and submit your #TCFBest faves all week long.
Tylenol: The Good, the Bad and the Outright Expensive
Last month, ProPublica and NPR’s This American Life published an interactive, in-depth look at the dangers of Tylenol. The report exposed the risks of acetaminophen with studies showing it to be more harmful than the company, or the FDA, claims. Peter Osnos in The Atlantic used this piece as a springboard for providing a compelling look at investigative journalism spending. The journalists covering the Tylenol story racked up two years and $750,000, making it a very expensive story indeed. Osnos eloquently posed the question: what price do you pay for a life-saving story? But the Tylenol coverage did not end there. Kevin Anderson of the Media Development Investment Fund arguably “debunked” the whole premise in one post. Anderson found that Tylenol has been promoting the drug’s dangers since 2011, and it took him only a 30 second search (much faster and cheaper than two years and $7.5K). Read the story that started it all here and decide for yourself. #longread
Would a Shutdown Abroad Still Make a Sound?
Slate wins the award for viral post of the week, covering the government shutdown in a way only a foreign correspondent would love. In the first of a new series entitled “If It Happened There,” Joshua Keating describes the national effects of a shutdown as though America were situated somewhere between Sudan and Libya rather than in North America. Best line: “The current rebellion has been led by Sen. Ted Cruz, a young fundamentalist lawmaker from the restive Texas region, known in the past as a hotbed of separatist activity.” Read more budgetary prose here.
Starving Artists Can Now be Insured and Starving
This week marked the grand opening for the Affordable Care Act exchanges. News outlets and blogs furiously posted their two cents on what Americans can expect, who benefits and who might have to pay up. Alyssa Rosenberg of ThinkProgress took a different route, delving into the murky world of…working artists. The (ailing) creatives highlighted in this piece are “folks who would like to set up their lives so that when bad medical things happen, they are merely bad, even very bad, rather than completely catastrophic.” Because, really, isn’t it better to spend all one’s savings on paint or pens than on exorbitant hospital fees? Read the full article here.