Bethany McLean’s Weekend Reading List: Fracking, Private Equity, and Hospitals

Bethany McLean
Bethany McLean is a contributing editor at Vanity Fair, a columnist for Yahoo Finance, and a contributor to CNBC. Her 2001 Fortune piece, “Is Enron Overpriced?,” was one of the first skeptical articles about the company. After Enron collapsed into bankruptcy, she co-authored (with Peter Elkind) The Smartest Guys in the Room: The Amazing Rise and Scandalous Fall of Enron. A documentary based on the book was nominated for an Academy Award in 2006. She is also the author of All the Devils Are Here (with Joe Nocera), Shaky Ground, and Saudi America. Along with Luigi Zingales, she co-hosts the Podcast Capitalisn't.

Also Read

Who Is to Blame for the 2008 Financial Crisis?

The IGM Center at the University of Chicago has asked its American and European economist panel to rate the main causes of the financial...

Congress Is Leaning Towards a Big Tech Breakup

The dominant platforms have proven themselves to be ungovernable. Behavioral remedies, especially those that require continuous oversight, might be pushed aside. The...

Tech Monopolies Are the Reason the US Now Has a TikTok Problem

Tech platforms like Facebook say we should protect, empower, and celebrate their concentrated power for the sake of America’s national security. But...

Friedman’s Principle, 50 Years Later

In the mid-1980s, Milton Friedman’s view that the only social responsibility of business is to increase its profits became dominant in business...

Corruption, lobbying, corporate malfeasance, and frauds: a weekly unconventional selection of must-read articles by investigative journalist Bethany McLean. 


From the wonderful Barry Ritholtz. Can we do better? Well, we must

I’ve long been a skeptic of fracking, but the human cost of the meltdown is high and it couldn’t come at a worse time.

I somehow missed this excellent piece, but I have been wondering about the role private equity has played in our healthcare system.

Bonus! Expect the unexpected! Aka welcome, Elon Musk:

ProMarket is dedicated to discussing how competition tends to be subverted by special interests. The posts represent the opinions of their writers, not necessarily those of the University of Chicago, the Booth School of Business, or its faculty. For more information, please visit ProMarket Blog Policy.

Latest article

George Stigler on Henry Simons, “Crown Prince” of the Chicago School

To mark 75 years since the passing of Henry Simons, professor of Economics and Law at the University of Chicago, ProMarket is...

Electoral College Reform: New Problems or Real Solutions?

Each electoral system creates specific incentives to (mis)allocate government resources. Would putting the National Popular Vote (NPV) in lieu of the Electoral...

When Do Users Benefit From Platform Mergers?

A new paper shows that platform mergers can harness network effects at the cost of reducing the platform differentiation that users value. 

Harold Demsetz and Israel Kirzner Understood That Competition Regulates Markets

Economists Harold Demsetz and Israel Kirzner challenged the prevailing orthodoxy in microeconomic analysis and public policy beginning with their respective work in...

The Covid-19 Pandemic Should Not Delay Actions to Prevent Anticompetitive Consolidation in US Health Care Markets

Harvard Business School professor Leemore Dafny lays out potential reforms to assist agencies in halting anticompetitive acquisitions and practices, and to preserve...