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Michael Grabell

Reporter

Photo of Michael Grabell

Michael Grabell covers economic issues, labor, immigration and trade. He has reported on the ground from more than 30 states, as well as some of the remotest villages in Alaska and Guatemala. His work has appeared in the New Yorker and the New York Times and on Vice and NPR. He has won a Gerald Loeb Award for business journalism and an IRE Medal for investigative reporting and is a three-time finalist for the Livingston Award for Young Journalists.

Body Scanner Survey Methodology

Coffee, Tea or Cancer? Almost Half of Americans Oppose X-ray Body Scanners

A new Harris poll conducted for ProPublica shows that even if X-ray body scanners would prevent terrorists from smuggling explosives onto planes, 46 percent of Americans still oppose using them because they could cause a few people to eventually develop cancer.

Senator Seeks Answers on X-Ray Body Scanners

In letters to the Transportation Security Administration, Senator Susan Collins asked why the agency backed off its promise to conduct a new safety study of the X-ray machines, and recommended larger signs to advise pregnant women they can request a pat-down instead.

TSA Puts Off Safety Study of X-ray Body Scanners

After promising an independent evaluation of X-ray body scanners, the head of the TSA now says he’ll put it off pending an inspector general report on the machines.

Europe Bans X-Ray Body Scanners Used at U.S. Airports

The European Union has prohibited the use of X-ray body scanners, which emit low levels of a type of radiation shown to cause cancer.

TSA to Conduct New Study of X-Ray Body Scanners

The head of the TSA testified today that the agency will perform a new, independent study on the safety of X-ray body scanners after senators at a hearing raised questions about a ProPublica investigation.

U.S. Government Glossed Over Cancer Concerns As It Rolled Out Airport X-Ray Scanners

A 1998 safety panel was reassured X-ray body scanners wouldn't see widespread use. Today, despite having a safer alternative that the U.S. government deems highly effective, the Transportation Security Administration is marching millions of airline passengers through the scanners, parting ways with European countries that concluded radiation from routine airport use poses a health risk.

Economic Myths: We Separate Fact From Fiction

Taxes are too high, the stimulus was too little. What’s true?

Could Unspent Stimulus Money Be Used to Fend Off a New Recession?

Taking back stimulus money committed to long-term infrastructure projects like high-speed rail and spending it on short-term stimuli like food stamps is easier said than done.

New Army Study Says Radiation From Airport Body Scanners Is Minor

The backscatter X-ray scanners, which the Transportation Security Administration uses to check for objects hidden under clothing, have been the subject of controversy about how safe they are and whether they create a cancer risk for the traveling public.

TSA Airport Scanners Wouldn’t Catch an Implant Bomber

Intelligence reports suggest terrorists may try to avoid airport security scanners by implanting explosive devices, and the Transportation Security Administration said that passengers flying to the United States may notice additional security measures.

Scientists Cast Doubt on TSA Tests of Full-Body Scanners

The Transportation Security Administration is confident that its full-body X-ray scanners are medically safe, but a group of scientists with expertise in cancer and radiation say the evidence made public to support those safety claims is unreliable.

Safety Reviewers Raise Questions About Construction of New Nuclear Fuel Plant

Two scientists say the NRC took construction and licensing shortcuts at a MOX fuel plant being built in South Carolina. The plant, which will convert plutonium from nuclear weapons into fuel for commercial reactors, is the first construction authorized by the NRC since the Three Mile Island accident.

Villages Testify to Disparity in Benefits Alaska Native Corporations Provide

Congress created the system of Alaska Native Corporations with the promise of bringing prosperity to a scattered indigenous population stuck in poverty. The corporations have created pockets of success but not a wide-scale solution for joblessness and substance abuse.

Slideshow: The Villages That Depend on ANCs

FAA Moves to Limit Blockout System Hiding Private Jet Flights

Citing a court ruling involving a ProPublica public records request, the Federal Aviation Administration says private jet owners may not block their whereabouts from real-time flight tracking without a valid security concern. The National Business Aviation Association objects to the proposed FAA rule change.

Gov’t Considering Rolling Back Rule Allowing Private Planes to Keep Flights Secret

Under a plan the Department of Transportation is reportedly considering, most private plane owners will no longer be able to prevent the public from tracking their flights.

Alaska Native Firms Shift Stimulus Work to Outsiders

A ProPublica analysis shows that Alaska Native Corporations rely heavily on subcontracts with non-native companies to perform stimulus projects they’ve won through special contracting privileges.

Cape Fox Corporation: Revenue vs. Net Income

What Are Alaska Native Corporations?

Questions and answers about Alaska Native Corporations

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