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The Opioid Tragedy, Part 1: ‘We’ve Addicted an Entire Generation’

How pharma greed, government subsidies, and a push to make pain the “fifth vital sign” kicked off a crisis that costs $80 billion a year and has killed hundreds of thousands of Americans

Oxycodone pain pills prescribed for a patient with chronic pain lie on display
Oxycodone pain pills prescribed for a patient with chronic pain. Photo: John Moore/Getty Images

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Stephen J. Dubner/ Freakonomics Radio

Stephen J. Dubner/ Freakonomics Radio

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Stephen J. Dubner is co-author of the Freakonomics books and host of Freakonomics Radio.