Doing so may be the only chance of ending the pandemic

The silhouette of a vaccine shot hovering over dark silhouettes of people from various age groups.
The silhouette of a vaccine shot hovering over dark silhouettes of people from various age groups.
Photo: japatino/Moment/Getty Images

On one side are the leaders of 57 nations, the Pope, and a coalition of nursing unions all over the world. On the other are the executives of the world’s biggest pharmaceutical corporations. At issue is an idea that may be the only chance of ending the Covid-19 pandemic — and also takes aim at the drug industry’s core business model.

The dividing question: Should Covid-19 vaccines remain the intellectual property of drug companies?

In October 2020, India and South Africa submitted a petition asking that the World Trade Organization waive the intellectual property rules relating to Covid-19 that currently…


Uber Freight says its app offers drivers more transparency and consistent earnings, but some truckers are worried it won’t help them for the long haul

Richard Hernandez, an Arkansas truck driver, regularly books loads on Uber Freight. “I think they’re just trying to increase their profit margin,” he says of the app. Photographed on November 13, 2020 in Atkins, Arkansas by Terra Fondriest for OneZero

In the summer of 2019, Richard Hernandez, an Arkansas truck driver, took what seemed like a straightforward job: Move 40,000 pounds of peanuts from the Planters factory in Fort Smith, Arkansas, to the Sam’s Club Distribution Center in Searcy, Arkansas, for $680. He found the job through Uber, which since 2017 has been in the trucking business. There was just one problem: When he arrived at Planters, he learned that the load weighed 45,000 pounds, not 40,000. The extra 5,000 pounds would impact his profit — independent truckers’ “freight rate,” or how much they’re paid per mile, typically increases with…


One Bird Charger estimates that he took on $40,000 in scooter debt

By the time that Daniel got a surprise call from someone at Bird this spring, things seemed dire for the dockless scooter industry. A 35-year-old former jet engine mechanic for the military, Daniel had been supporting his family of five by charging dockless e-scooters in San Diego, California, earning an average of $500 a day in the summer months, with the help of a sprinter van and generators he purchased so that he could collect and charge more scooters simultaneously. But payouts from the scooter giants Bird and Lime suddenly dropped late last year. Then, Lime left town in January…


A modest proposal for an infinity ban on hot plates, mass-market buffets, and other gross Petri dishes of communal eating

Photo illustration. Image sources: Fotograzia/Getty Images, Vudhikul Ocharoen/EyeEm/Getty Images

For a fleeting moment, the manager of the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C., held onto hope that people would still be excited to chow down at an overpriced hotel Easter buffet: “Get ready for a HUGE celebration in a few weeks,” Mickael Damelincourt tweeted in earnest on March 24, making a reference to a $130-a-head brunch buffet the hotel hosts every Easter Sunday. His message was roundly mocked and then deleted. …


An illustration of a couple looking at a wall of medical bills next to an operating room where doctors are waiting.
An illustration of a couple looking at a wall of medical bills next to an operating room where doctors are waiting.
Illustration: Mark Wang

Orthopedic surgery would have bankrupted us in the United States. So we went to Mexico instead.

“Holy shit,” my husband said when he saw the doctor’s son pull over and park his car next to a small, concrete building in the neighborhood of Nueva Tijuana. The exterior paint of the clinic was peeling and there were bars on the windows. We parked and stared at the clinic silently without getting out of the truck. I’d hoped $2,000 for orthopedic surgery was going to buy us something a little nicer than this.

Five days earlier, Aaron and I drove the half-hour from our rental home in the Mexican beach community of Rosarito to Tijuana’s Zona Río to…

Amy Martyn

journalist

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