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Reveal

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Reveal is a nationally distributed radio show and podcast co-produced by the Center for Investigative Reporting and PRX. Reveal features CIR’s reporting, as well as stories from public radio stations and a wide range of media partners, both nonprofit and commercial.

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Photo illustration by Gabriel Hongsdusit and Michael Schiller / Reveal

With Silicon Valley under the microscope for not living up to its idealistic hype, this week’s episode of Reveal investigates tech companies on the cutting edge that are struggling to solve old-fashioned problems. 

We start with worker injuries at Tesla’s electric car factory in California. Alyssa Jeong Perry of KQED in San Francisco and Reveal’s Will Evans examine what caused the company’s safety problems and whether its claims of improvement hold up.

Tech companies in Silicon Valley are under the microscope for not living up to their idealistic pledges to save the world. On this week’s episode of Reveal, we investigate companies on the cutting edge that are struggling to solve some old-fashioned problems: Worker safety at Tesla, and diversity at Google and beyond.

Gabriel Hongusit / Reveal

In 2016, the Justice Department alleged that Malaysian officials stole billions of dollars from their people and funneled some of it through the United States.

Reveal teamed up with Washington D.C.’s public radio station, WAMU, to dig into one of the largest investigations ever by the Justice Department’s Kleptocracy Asset Recovery Initiative.

It’s a tale that features cameos from Leonardo DiCaprio, Donald Trump, the world’s largest yacht, a Malaysian playboy known for his lavish spending in New York nightclubs, and – as you might imagine – lots of Champagne.

In 2016, the Justice Department alleged that Malaysian officials stole billions of dollars from their people and funneled some of it through the United States. Reveal teamed up with Washington D.C.’s public radio station, WAMU, to dig into one of the largest investigations ever by the Justice Department’s Kleptocracy Asset Recovery Initiative. It’s a tale that features cameos from Leonardo DiCaprio, Donald Trump, the world’s largest yacht, a Malaysian playboy known for his lavish spending in New York nightclubs, and – as you might imagine – lots of Champagne.

Where criminals get their guns

Mar 29, 2018

Across the country, criminals are arming themselves in unexpected ways. In Florida, they’re stealing guns from unlocked cars and gun stores. In other places, they’re getting them from the police themselves, as cash-strapped departments sell their used weapons to buy new ones. On this episode of Reveal, we learn where criminals get their guns and what cars can teach us about gun safety.

The toxic water of Flint, Michigan, reminded us that lead is a very persistent poison. This week, Reveal investigates the lurking threat of lead from the dust of urban demolitions to the wilds of Wyoming. Hear how contractors help one another cut corners on demolitions, putting kids at risk, while city officials study the problem. Meet a public health nurse who explains why she advises families to choose a homeless shelter over a lead-tainted apartment, and learn how childhood lead poisoning still affects one man decades later. Progress has been made cleaning up lead.

The kids aren't all right

Mar 21, 2018

Federal law requires colleges and universities to report sexual assaults on campus. But that’s not true for kindergarten through 12th grade – and the Associated Press found a shocking level of that violence among students under 18. On this episode, Reveal delves into stories from this continuing investigation.

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Federal law requires colleges and universities to track and disclose sexual assaults on campus. It’s different for kindergarten through 12th grade, where there are no similar requirements for cases involving assaults between students. In elementary, middle and high schools across the U.S., the Associated Press found a shocking level of sexual violence among students, including on U.S. military bases.

Reveal: The Nuclear Threat

Mar 13, 2018
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On Jan. 25, the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists edged the “Doomsday Clock” closer to midnight. It’s a representation of how close the world is to the potential of a nuclear apocalypse.

So, how far are we from a nuclear crisis? This week’s episode examines the question from different angles.

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It used to be that there was a discrete wildfire season, a period of time where fire risk was highest. Throughout the country, that season is getting longer, and in many places now, wildfire season is happening year-round. Fires are getting bigger, and they’re burning hotter.

Wildfires raged across Northern California in October, burning through the state’s famed Napa and Sonoma wine regions. In all, more than 170 blazes ripped across an area the size of Maryland and Delaware combined. Scores awoke to flames at their doors, and 44 people were killed in the deadliest fire event in state history. On this episode of Reveal, we team up with KQED to examine what led to delays in evacuations and why so many fire victims received no warnings at all. As wildfires grow more intense, are first responders keeping up?

REVEAL Fundraiser Episode Spring 2018

Mar 1, 2018

For the 2018 Spring fundraising season, here are three of our favorite Reveal stories from the past year.

Deja Nuke: Return of the Nuclear Threat

Feb 28, 2018

With the threat of nuclear war once again a part of the national conversation, Reveal looks at nuclear threats both foreign and domestic. The show takes listeners to Iran, and finds out what life is actually like inside North Korea. As the Trump Administration pushes for the biggest increase in spending on nuclear weapons since the Cold War, Reveal explores how nukes have changed. Instead of annihilation, think “flexible” nuclear weapons that can threaten “limited” nuclear war. That’s the idea anyway.

Reveal: My Town, Chi-Town

Feb 26, 2018
Photo of Lamar Caples by Bill Healy. Photo illustration by Michael I Schiller and Gabriel Hongsdusit / Reveal

Since 2000, a quarter-million black Chicagoans have moved out of the city. The reasons for this reverse migration include decades of bad policy and broken promises on affordable housing, education and public safety. We’re taking a close look at those challenges in this week’s episode, along with some of the people who are rising to meet them.

My Town, Chi-Town

Feb 22, 2018

Chicago is experiencing a reversal of the great migration that propelled African Americans northward in search of opportunity. In this century, a quarter-million black Chicagoans have moved away. The reasons include decades of bad policy and broken promises on affordable housing, education and public safety.

Sam Ward / Reveal

Forty years ago, Congress passed the Community Reinvestment Act, which required banks to lend to qualified borrowers in blighted neighborhoods. The act aimed to eliminate government-sponsored housing discrimination, known as redlining. But it is full of loopholes: It doesn’t apply to mortgage brokers or cover internet banking, and it allows banks to claim credit for loaning almost exclusively to white applicants moving into historically black neighborhoods – supposedly lifting up low-income areas, but also enabling gentrification.

The red line: Racial disparities in lending

Feb 16, 2018

It’s been 10 years since the great housing bust and lending is back. But not everyone is getting loans. In dozens of cities across the country, lenders are more likely to deny loans to applicants of color than white ones – even when you take into account how much money they make. Sound illegal? Yes, this type of housing discrimination was outlawed 50 years ago. But it’s making a comeback. On this episode of Reveal, we dig into the new redlining.

Reporter Tennessee Watson takes us inside the arduous process of seeking justice in her own child sexual abuse case. Her story exposes discrepancies in prosecutors’ responses and spotlights a lack of accountability.
Anna Vignet / Reveal

In light of the conviction of former USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar, we’re revisiting an award-winning investigation from 2016.   

Reporter Tennessee Watson says she was sexually abused by her gymnastics coach when she was a kid in the 1980s. More than 25 years later, when she learned he still was coaching children, she called the police. Her inside account of the painful process of seeking justice in her own case exposes discrepancies in prosecutors’ responses to reports of child sexual abuse and spotlights a lack of accountability.

The scandal around USA Gymnastics and former Olympic team doctor Larry Nassar is shining a spotlight on the sexual abuse of young athletes. This week, Reveal revisits the story of a woman who decides to confront the coach she says abused her decades earlier. Reporter Tennessee Watson was abused by her gymnastics coach when she was a kid in the 1980s. Over 25 years later, when she learned he still was coaching children, she called the police.

Bernard Madoff may be a fading memory from the past, but for reporter Steve Fishman, the fallen financier’s story holds lessons for today. Madoff masterminded one of the biggest Ponzi schemes in history, duping thousands of investors out of tens of billions of dollars. His scam rocked Wall Street for years. In this episode, we trace the rise and fall of Madoff through Fishman, who spent years interviewing investors, regulators and even Madoff himself from inside federal prison. We learn how Madoff pulled off his scam, and why nobody caught on for decades.

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