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South Carolina’s Lax Domestic Abuse Laws and More in MuckReads Weekly

Some of the best #MuckReads we read this week. Want to receive these by email? Sign up to get this briefing delivered to your inbox every weekend.

 Till death do us part. A seven-part series by the Post and Courier investigates domestic violence in South Carolina, which has accounted for 300 women being killed by their partners in the last decade (about one every 12 days). Though the rate is among the worst in the nation, state laws are more lenient on abusers, the newspaper found. In fact, the maximum sentence for beating a dog is about five years longer than it is for beating a woman (that’s just 30 days in jail for a first offense). — Post and Courier via @slate

Graphic via Post and Courier

 

Did a Wall Street titan’s money bail out Robert Mugabe in his hour of need? With Zimbabwe’s economy in shambles,Robert Mugabe was on the verge of losing his grip on power in the Spring of 2008. But then, a consortium of investors led by Wall Street’s largest publicly traded hedge fund stepped in with $100 million to help the government secure rights to mine platinum. Och-Ziff Capital Management is now under federal investigation for its investments “in a number of companies in Africa.” — Bloomberg Businessweek via @KYWeise

Texas is wasting billions of cubic feet of natural gas through “flaring, which increased 400 percent from 2009 to 2012. Most of the lost gas is being burned off the Eagle Ford Shale in South Texas, where the flare rate is 10 times higher than all the state’s other oil fields combined. "Nobody wants to flare," said Barry Smitherman, chairman of the Texas Railroad Commission's three-member elected board, which regulates the state’s oil and gas industry. "When you do that, you're burning up money.”Not to mention driving pollution. — San Antonio Express-News via @josephkokenge

Should Las Vegas prosecutors being paying the witness’ rent? The Las Vegas Review-Journal uncovered dozens of payments by the Clark County DA that went toward paying the rent. As the paper reports, “the law requires witnesses to be compensated for actual costs of coming to court,” but defense attorneys question whether the rent payments seem more like buying testimony. — Las Vegas Review-Journal via @ryangabrielson

“There is no Current Procedural Terminology code for saving someone’s life. A primary care physician makes the call that can save his patient’s life, but doesn’t earn a penny for his efforts. Politico investigates a little-known committee run by the American Medical Association that is dominated by specialists who play a powerful role in determining how doctors can (or can’t) charge for their services. “The AMA even owns the copyright to the elaborate coding system by which those prices are set, earning huge licensing profits from it,” Politico reports. — Politico via @maxjedeur

Don’t miss: A Guatemalan diplomat’s struggle to bring her countrymen home in part three of Beyond the Border (The Guardian, Texas Observer).  

 

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