Newsweek Mar-20-15

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United States
The Newsweek/Daily Beast Company LLC
37 号


cuba’s bay of fat cats

Traveling from Miami to Havana is a haphazard, seemingly nonsensical process that requires patience, guile, humor and a ruthless willingness to cut lines. Thankfully, I’m traveling with Alberto Magnan, so we skip the airport check-in line because he knows a guy. Magnan, who’s 53, was born in Cuba, left at the age of 7 and, aside from a short stay in Spain, has been living in New York City ever since. He and his wife, Dara Metz, are behind the Magnan Metz art gallery in Chelsea, where they focus on international artists, particularly Cubans. Ninety minutes before our flight takes off, we breeze past the folks who started lining up two hours ago, and head straight for the ticket counter, where he greets a woman who is clearly in charge…

the promises and perils of synthetic biology

A mile from the Mexican border, on a patch of scrubland where the Chihuahuan Desert meets the lowslung mountains of New Mexico, lies $104 million worth of government investment in the form of 78 concrete pits. In January, Mike Mendez, a 52-year-old scientist with parted hair and a weakness for cowboy boots and sweater vests, rented a car and drove the two hours from El Paso International Airport to this parched corner of the Southwest. He had spent five years of his life thinking about these pits, but still he’d never seen them in person. Situated 10 miles outside of Columbus, New Mexico, population 1,628, the pits and the high-tech machinery around them were built by Sapphire Energy, which Mendez co-founded in 2007. The whole operation was the product of $85 million…

exiled in abu dhabi, mohammed dahlan dreams of gaza

No place in the Arab world could be more different from the Gaza Strip than Abu Dhabi. The affluent emirate on the Gulf has shimmering skyscrapers, a Grand Prix racetrack and its own Louvre. Yet Mohammed Dahlan, the 53-year-old Gaza native and exiled political leader, seems comfortable here. His home is a glossy mingling of marble and glass, with chandeliers hanging from high ceilings and framed paintings on the walls. On a sunny winter day recently, he worked in his garden dressed in jeans and soft loafers, then greeted me on his waterfront patio. But for all its luxuriousness, Abu Dhabi is only temporary, Dahlan says—a staging area where he now plots his comeback. He’s lived in this city for four years, ever since Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas expelled him from…

two numbers: could spending more on hiv prevention cut treatment costs?

With an estimated 1.2 million people in the United States living with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and an estimated 50,000 new diagnoses every year, policymakers must decide how to split funds between treatment and prevention programs. To help with that decision making, researchers at Weill Cornell Medical College and a handful of other schools and agencies determined the medical cost saved by preventing a single HIV infection: between $229,800 and $338,400. The researchers, who recently published their findings in the journal Medical Care, used computer-simulation modeling to map out the treatment and other medical costs for a hypothetical 1 million people who become HIV-positive at age 35, the mean age of infection in the U.S. Using hospital data and the consumer price index to determine the costs of medications, antiretroviral therapy…

o’reilly’s jfk reporting was impossible. i know because i was there

I was recently bemused to see that Bill O’Reilly, the Fox News host, managed in 2012 to parachute himself back in time to March 29, 1977 so as to make himself a witness to the gunshot that killed George de Mohrenschildt. De Mohrenschildt, a well-connected Russian émigré, was a figure of interest in the mystery of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy because he had befriended Lee Harvey Oswald, the alleged assassin of JFK. How did O’Reilly get into the act? In his 2012 best-selling book Killing Kennedy: The End of Camelot, he wrote himself—as a 29-year-old reporter—into the de Mohrenschildt death scene, stating on page 300: “As the reporter knocked on the door of de Mohrenschildt’s daughter’s home, he heard the shotgun blast that marked the suicide of the…

can hbo win the war against netflix?

After years of producing some of the most vaunted dramas on television, HBO was in trouble. It was 2007, and some of the channel’s biggest hits, including The Sopranos and Sex and the City, had run their course, and the channel’s pipeline of premium programming had run dry. AMC’s Mad Men, a show HBO had passed on, was dominating water cooler conversations. “I think we learned something as a company,” says HBO President Michael Lombardo of that lull. “You need to keep those scripts coming and be ready for the next thing. Now we wake up anxious to find a different show.” Fast-forward to the present. HBO has rebounded, thanks in part to standout shows such as Girls, Game of Thrones and Last Week Tonight With John Oliver. But the channel…