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Ben Hallman
Ben Hallman is senior editor for projects and investigations at The Huffington Post, based in New York. Previously, he was a business and finance reporter at the investigative nonprofit The Center for Public Integrity and a legal reporter at The American Lawyer. He can be reached at, or on twitter @ben_hallman.

Entries by Ben Hallman

'The Big Short' Blows Away Bogus Argument That Poor People Caused The Financial Crisis

(1) Comments | Posted November 30, 2015 | 11:29 AM

Nearly a decade ago, I wrote an article about how workers in a peculiar American industry were beginning to worry about subprime home loans. They were Wall Street lawyers who specialized in a dark financial art called securitization -- bundling up assets, such as home mortgages, into bonds...

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Subsidy Scorecards

(0) Comments | Posted November 13, 2015 | 6:08 PM

If you attend a Division I university, chances are you are bankrolling your school’s athletics department. Search our scorecards to find out by how much.

Search here!


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The Subsidy Gap

(0) Comments | Posted November 13, 2015 | 5:59 PM

There is more money than ever in college sports, but only a few universities have cashed in. More than 150 schools that compete in Division I are using student money and other revenue to finance their sports ambitions. We call this yawning divide the Subsidy Gap....

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Sports At Any Cost

(0) Comments | Posted November 13, 2015 | 3:48 PM

Special report: Public universities have poured more than $10 billion into their athletic programs in the past five years, in a bid to keep pace in a spending arms race that very few can win. College students, especially those from lower-income families, are paying much of...

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It’s Up To American Gun Owners To Reduce Gun Violence

(2) Comments | Posted October 2, 2015 | 1:31 PM

Another incomprehensible mass shooting, another news cycle dominated by calls for new gun restrictions -- demands that Congress will once again ignore. 

Such is the Groundhog Day nature of our national gun debate, in which everyone plays their assigned roll: Gun control proponents remind us...

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Pumpkin Spice Is Dead, Long Live Salted Caramel

(0) Comments | Posted September 9, 2015 | 6:22 PM

Pumpkin spice is over, dead. If you are still doing whatever one does with pumpkin spice (eating? drinking? snorting with $100 bills?), you are like that guy who is so stoked about the U2 concert he saw last night. You might as well catch the next plane to Pyongyang, because...

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World Bank Fails To Stop Attacks, Arrests Of Villagers Protesting Big Projects

(0) Comments | Posted September 8, 2015 | 11:02 AM

By Bopha Phorn, Michael Hudson, Barry Yeoman and Ben Hallman 

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia — Nget Khun, a 76-year-old known to some in Cambodia’s capital as “Grandma Mommy,” hasn’t had a quiet retirement.

Authorities have tossed the former street vendor in prison for months at a time....

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The Business Of Dying Has Never Been More Lucrative

(0) Comments | Posted July 23, 2015 | 3:20 PM

Some of the most financially successful health care providers are those whose patients usually die.

For-profit hospices saw profit margins exceed 15 percent in 2012, according to a new report from the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission, known as MedPAC, which advises Congress on health policy. No other Medicare-financed health service was...

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I Want My Kid To Read, So I'm Feeding My iPad To A Shark

(0) Comments | Posted July 15, 2015 | 10:47 AM


I'm headed to a North Carolina island next week, where I will offer my soft, pale body up to the sharks that have invaded the shallows this year. If not devoured, I plan to make a big dent in my reading list. 

Usually I prepare...

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World Bank Employees Losing Faith In Leadership, Survey Reveals

(8) Comments | Posted June 22, 2015 | 1:31 PM

This story was reported with Sasha Chavkin from the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists.

World Bank staffers are losing faith in the development giant’s leadership, an internal staff survey indicates, with fewer than one-third of respondents indicating that they have a “clear understanding” of the bank’s...

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The Confederate Flag Is a Racist Symbol of a Failed Rebellion. It's Not a Debate.

(1409) Comments | Posted June 19, 2015 | 6:44 PM

There are white Southerners who venerate their Confederate ancestors as heroes, even patriots. One of mine was a deserter. I wish he hadn't fought at all.

My great-great grandfather was conscripted into the Confederate Navy and assigned to a ship guarding Mobile Bay, in Alabama. In August 1864, after...

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Big Banks' Mortgage Units -- Still Failing Customers -- Face New Restrictions

(99) Comments | Posted June 17, 2015 | 6:40 PM

Remember that time the nation's largest banks engaged in fraud and deceptive lending to fuel Wall Street's insatiable appetite for dodgy investments backed by home mortgages?

Remember how in the aftermath of the economic collapse, after the banks received massive taxpayer bailouts, some of the...

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Debt Forgiveness Could Save This Woman's Home, But Nation's Housing Chief Still Says No

(74) Comments | Posted May 26, 2015 | 11:08 AM

Sylvia Alvarez didn't grasp the enormity of the crisis about to engulf her community until she returned to her office in Tampa, Florida, after a long weekend and found her voicemail filled with messages from distraught homeowners.

It was early 2008. The bottom had fallen out of both the housing...

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I Misplaced My Fancy Camera On Assignment In Peru, But My iPhone Saved The Day

(7) Comments | Posted April 21, 2015 | 2:43 PM

Ví­ctor Mendoza reached the top of the steep hill behind his home, then stopped and thrust a hand into his pocket. His 10-year-old son, following behind, sank into the grass nearby. In the distance, the yellow and green highlands of northern Peru unfurled until they met a dark sky.


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World Bank Admits It Ignored Its Own Rules Designed To Protect The Poor

(67) Comments | Posted March 5, 2015 | 4:33 PM

This story was reported and written with Sasha Chavkin and Mike Hudson from the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists.

The World Bank, created to fight poverty, has admitted that it’s failed to follow its own rules for protecting the poor people swept aside by dams, roads and other big projects...

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One Peruvian Woman Is Standing Up To A Gold-Mining Goliath

(17) Comments | Posted February 11, 2015 | 5:26 PM

This story was reported with Roxana Olivera, a Toronto-based investigative journalist living in Peru.

SOROCHUCO, Peru -- On a remote farm deep in the Peruvian Andes, in a region where sheep outnumber people by a comfortable margin, a very small woman is foiling the plans of one of the...

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Hey America, Your New Year's Resolutions Are Garbage

(9) Comments | Posted January 9, 2015 | 9:45 AM

It's been a week since you awoke with a hangover and promised to do something different. If you are an American, the odds are high that the different-something involved making yourself better in some incredibly tedious way.

Maybe you pledged to be less fat. Maybe you resolved to be...

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Here Are The Hospices That Break The Most Rules

(39) Comments | Posted January 8, 2015 | 7:43 AM

Missed appointments. Confidential records left out in the open, in shopping bags and stacked on shelves. A patient overdosed with 10 times the amount of prescribed pain medication.

These are some of the more than 31,000 violations turned up over the past decade by inspectors...
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Here's Why The NRA Is Winning The Gun Argument

(538) Comments | Posted December 15, 2014 | 5:23 PM

After more than a decade of waning influence, gun control advocates thought their moment had arrived. A madman had stalked the halls of an elementary school with an assault rifle, leaving an unthinkable horror in his wake: 20 slain children and six teachers and staff members who died trying to...

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The Final Moments Of Michael Brown's Life Look Very Different, Depending Whom You Talk To

(89) Comments | Posted November 25, 2014 | 8:35 PM

In his final moments of life, Michael Brown charged toward Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson, shrugging off warnings to stop and seeming to ignore at least one bullet that wounded him, while reaching to his waistband as if to pull a weapon.

Or, he sank to his knees, raised his...

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