The Bad Pills for AIDS Patients in Africa

The most fascinating news from around the Web on May 16, 2013

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  1. The Pills That Kill

    Cause the simple man baby pays for the thrills, the bills,
    the pills that kill…

    John Mellencamp, Pink Houses

    “In a conference call with a dozen company executives, one brushed aside her fears about the quality of the AIDS medicine Ranbaxy was supplying for Africa. ‘Who cares? … It’s just blacks dying.'” Fortune’s Katherine Eban writes about the criminal fraud at a pharmaceutical company that sells generic drugs around the world. Can the FDA really keep patients safe in a marketplace where 84% of the drugs purchased are generic?

    + Will a new vaccine serve as a cure for cocaine addicts?

  2. Four hours, 50 minutes, and 31 days

    While he was being surrounded by law enforcement officers, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev reportedly wrote a “part manifesto, part suicide note, and part justification for the killing and maiming of innocent civilians” on the inside of the bullet-riddled boat where he was ultimately apprehended.

    + As she crossed the finish line along with many other victims of the Boston bombing, Sharon Novick called out her time: “Four hours, 50 minutes, and 31 days.” Novick, along with the wheelchair-bound Norden brothers (who each lost a leg) joined several other runners who were still determined to cross the finish line.

  3. Quitters

    Don’t quit. Don’t retire either. A new study has found that retirement can be bad for your health. The British study suggests that retiring can dramatically increase the risk of depression and illness. Oh well, in this economy, most people are too broke to quit anyway.

    In End it like Beckham, The Daily Mail provides the highlights of David Beckham’s career as the star player (and global celebrity) announces his own retirement. For what it’s worth, he doesn’t seem depressed or sick so far.

    + Always covering the angle that matters most, Buzzfeed looks back at every David Beckham hairstyle ever.

  4. Why Did The Chicken Cross The Border?

    Ending in Gaza City, it was “a journey that involved two taxis, an international border, a smuggling tunnel and a young entrepreneur coordinating it all from a small shop.” In other words, someone really wanted their KFC.

  5. A Shot in the Dark

    “American tragedies don’t occur on the southside of Chicago or the New Orleans 9th Ward. They don’t occur where inner city high school kids shoot into school buses or someone shoots at a 10-year old’s birthday party in New Orleans. Or Gary, Indiana. Or Compton. Or Newport News.” David Dennis asks (and answers) a compelling question: Why isn’t the New Orleans Mother’s Day parade shooting a national tragedy?”

    + An update to this story: Police have apprehended a suspect in the case (who was out on bail at the time of the shooting).

  6. The Curse

    President Obama is facing a series of second term scandals. That storyline seems somehow familiar. Nate Silver digs into the numbers to find out if presidents really do face a second term curse. I’m pretty sure the curse starts the day you decide to get into politics and ends with your presidential library ribbon-cutting.

  7. The Old Ball and Chain

    I love you. They were words I had longed to hear from Justin for years, but when he finally spoke them, something held me back. Three layers of Plexiglass and armed guards, to be precise.” In Slate, Melody Wilson tries to explain why a nice girl like her dated an inmate.

  8. Scaring the App Out of You

    Neal Edelstein has produced scary flicks such as The Ring and now he’s ready to release his latest horror movie. Only it isn’t a movie, it’s an app. “Viewers can download the app for free from the app store, and the first chapter is free. To continue on, they will have to pay, but they will no idea when the next chapter is coming.” I’m not that into scary movies, but I will be watching the numbers on this one. Serialized content is going to be the next big thing (along with a few dozen other big things that I will disclose in a future edition).

  9. The Office Runs Out of Space

    Grantland’s Andy Greenwald on the end of The Office: “When it was good, The Office was truly great. In contrast to the aspirational noisiness of other sitcoms, this was a show that celebrated the smallness of everyday life, the quiet indignities and tiny failures that mar our days and the shy smiles, raised eyebrows, and harmless pranks (well, mostly harmless) that give us the resilience to do it all again tomorrow.”

    + The Week 22 workplace tips we learned from The Office.

    Speaking of TV, Diddy joined the cast of Downton Abbey. Sort of.

  10. The Bottom of the News

    During a high-speed chase, a Portland police officer stopped his car to help a duck that was waddling in the street, and there’s video to prove it. The guy being chased got away. No word on whether he and the duck were in cahoots.

    + Saudi religious police have warned that anyone who uses Twitter risks damnation and “has lost this world and his afterlife.” Wait until these guys try Facebook.

    + Disney has listened to the critics of her makeover and has deleted the new version of Brave’s Merida.

    + The Cicadas are coming. And so are the recipes.