Marian Wang


Marian Wang was a reporter for ProPublica, covering education and college debt. She joined ProPublica in 2010, first blogging about a variety of accountability issues. Her later stories focused on how rising college costs and the complexity of the student loan system affect students and their families. Prior to coming to ProPublica, she worked at Mother Jones magazine in San Francisco and freelanced for a number of Chicago-based publications, including The Chicago Reporter, an investigative magazine focused on issues of race and poverty.

A Picture's Worth a Thousand Words ... and Millions of Barrels of Oil

Pictures of the Gulf oil spill can be more powerful than the words.

Gulf Oil Spill Update: Way Worse Than They Told Us

The estimates of the amount of oil spilling in the Gulf of Mexico keep going up, amid BP statements that the amount can't be measured easily, and aren't important, anyway.

Does Inquiry into Morgan Stanley Implicate Citi and UBS?

The Justice Department is looking into some CDOs designed -- and then bet against -- by Morgan Stanley, a report says. Those CDOs were marketed by Citibank and UBS, raising the question of whether they'll come under scrutiny as well.

Does Administration's Proposed Break-up of Offshore Oil Regulator Go Far Enough?

The Minerals Management Service, the agency regulating offshore drilling, would be split, separating its safety responsibilities from its leasing and royalties responsibilities.

After Spill, More Gulf Drilling Plans Got Environmental Exemptions

Even as oil was spilling into the Gulf of Mexico, companies were granted 27 exemptions from in-depth environmental analysis for proposed drilling, McClatchy reported. The exemptions don't mean the wells will be drilled, and there is a temporary moratorium on new wells.

Despite Previous Equipment Failure, BP Says Spill 'Seemed Inconceivable'

BP says the blowout preventer whose failure led to the Gulf oil spill has not had any problems in the past, but Minerals Management Service records suggest otherwise.

EPA Approves BP's Use of Questionable Chemicals to Break Up Oil

BP has resumed spraying dispersants to break up the Gulf oil spill with EPA approval, even though the chemicals pose their own hazards to the environment and sealife.

Regulators Let Industry Drill Deeper, Despite Safety Concerns and Unproven Fixes

The Gulf oil disaster spotlights the dangers in deepwater drilling, which has been increasing with little regulatory oversight or testing of new technologies to deal with the incredible water pressures the equipment must operate under.

Offshore Drilling Regulators Had Concerns, but Let Industry Self-Police

Drilling regulators had concerns about the reliability of blowout protection devices on oil rigs, but accepted industry assurances that they weren't needed, two reports show.

Govt Agency: Offshore Drilling Regulator Understated Risks of Oil Spills in Plans to Expand Drilling

In 2009, the Minerals Management Service submitted a five-year plan for expanding drilling off the coast of Alaska. But the plan ran into criticism from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the agency the monitors oceans.

NYT: We 'Should Have Included' Source's Industry Ties in Our Gulf Oil Spill Story

In an editor's note, The New York Times has clarified the connections that a group called the Gulf of Mexico Foundation has to the oil industry. In its original reporting, the Times had identified the foundation simply as a conservation group.

Nonprofit Conservation Group Has Ties to Oil Interests, Gulf Oil Spill

An article in The New York Times about the scope of the BP oil disaster quoted the executive director of the nonprofit Gulf of Mexico Foundation. It did not mention that the group has some close connections to the oil industry.

Oil Companies Pay a Pittance in Penalties to Offshore Drilling Regulator

The Minerals Management Service, which regulates offshore drilling, issues penalties for safety violations. But the fines in recent years have been dwarfed by the profits made by oil companies.

Report Finds Lamborghini-Driving "Small Business" Owners Defrauding Government Program

The Small Business Administration's 8(a) program is intended for companies whose owners are socially and economically disadvantaged. But a GAO report says the program is helping some owners who don't need it.

Did Former Bank Execs Lie to Congress?

Former Lehman CEO Richard Fuld may have understated his earnings while testifying before Congress, some reports say, and a former Goldman executive may have been disingenuous in his testimony.

Gulf Oil Spill Puts Spotlight on Regulator With Mixed Record

The Minerals Management Service, which oversees oil rigs, has had ethical and other problems. It is the agency that decided against requiring an oil-drilling safeguard that is used in some other countries.

Banks Pressured Credit Agencies, Then Blamed Them

Big financial firms are among those pointing fingers at the credit rating agencies for their role in the economic meltdown. But internal e-mail suggests that those same firms pressured the credit agencies to give good ratings.

Read the Pentagon's New Rules for Military Trials

The Department of Defense has released its Manual for Military Commissions, 281 pages that detail the latest rules and procedures for military trials at Guantanamo Bay. ProPublica provides access to the manual.

Republicans Getting More Campaign Cash From Wall Street

The Republicans' resistance to financial reform is risky in an election year. Whatever the reason, it comes as big financial firms are shifting more of their political contributions toward the GOP.

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