Out of the Ooze: The Story of Dr. Tom Price

By Alexander Zaitchik

The U.S. healthcare system is the outlier of the developed world: immoral, inefficient, expensive, and corrupt as hell. This system has survived into the present day thanks in large part to a century of organized medical-industry reaction epitomized by Dr. Tom Price, the surgeon-businessman-politician presently serving Donald Trump as the secretary of Health and Human Services. The story of this man’s rise out of Atlanta’s suburbs — a rise built on far-right ideology and market fundamentalism, rank greed and breathtaking cruelty — is also the story, and the ultimate condemnation, of our nation’s larger failure to provide healthcare as a right to all Americans.

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Praise for Out of the Ooze: The Story of Dr. Tom Price

“Donald Trump is the sick showman of Washington scandal, but the meat and potatoes of personal and corporate thievery goes to Thomas Price, secretary of HHS, who has created a profit center of illness and suffering.”
— Willam Greider, The Nation

In Out of the Ooze, journalist Alexander Zaitchik (author of Common Nonsense and The Gilded Rage) sketches the arc of Price’s career, from his days as a young flack for the American Medical Association barnstorming Georgia in opposition to the Clinton reform push of 1993; to his years on the Ways and Means Committee, when he brazenly traded $300,000 worth of healthcare-related stocks while lobbying on behalf of those same companies; to his current position at the apex of healthcare policy and GOP strategy to roll back the moderate reforms of the previous administration. The result is a taut argument for both the criminal investigation of Tom Price and a radical overhaul of the U.S. healthcare system he now oversees.

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Alexander Zaitchik is a freelance journalist whose writing has appeared in The Nation, The New Republic, Rolling Stone, Mother Jones, Vice, The Guardian, and many other publications. He is the author of two books, Common Nonsense: Glenn Beck and the Triumph of Ignorance, and The Gilded Rage: A Wild Ride Through Donald Trump’s America. He lives in New Orleans.

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