Here are this week's top must-read stories from #MuckReads, ProPublica's ongoing collection of the best watchdog journalism. Anyone can contribute by tweeting a link to a story and just including the hashtag #MuckReads or by sending an email to MuckReads@ProPublica.org. The best submissions are selected by ProPublica's editors and reporters and then featured on our site and @ProPublica.
In China, Human Costs Are Built Into an iPad, New York Times.
The workers who assemble iPhones, iPads, and other Apple products labor in dangerous conditions, but a radical overhaul would slow innovation.
Contributed by @ericuman
Dispute Over Drug in Feed Limiting U.S. Meat Exports, MSNBC.
The controversial drug ractopamine has sickened or killed more pigs than any other livestock drug on the market, leading the European Union and China—which together produce and consume about 70 percent of the world’s pork—to refuse to import meat raised on the additive. The U.S. pork industry wants to change their minds.
Contributed by @naomistarkman
Texas Hate Crime Law Has Little Effect, Austin American-Statesman.
A decade after a Texas hate crime law was enacted, just 10 cases have been prosecuted—despite hundreds of hate-crime reports. Only one case has gone to a jury.
Contributed by @AASInvestigates
Washington State Is Wasting Millions To Help Sex Predators Avoid Lockup, Seattle Times.
Two hundred and eighty sex offenders in Washington State are locked up indefinitely "as a way to protect society.” Under state law, prisoners who are legally defined as "violently sexual predators" are legally allowed to be detained after their sentences are through. Part of a series.
Contributed by James Neff
In Police Training, a Dark Film on U.S. Muslims, New York Times.
At least 1,489 police officers have been shown an anti-Muslim film during training, according to documents obtained by the Times. A top police official denied in January 2011 that the department had used the film, then said it had been mistakenly screened "a couple of times" for a few officers.
Contributed by Richard Tofel
Con Artist Starred in Sting That Cost Google Millions, Wall Street Journal.
Google agreed to pay $500 million to avoid prosecution for aiding illegal sales of pharmaceuticals. The settlement “signals that, where evidence can be developed that a search engine knowingly and actively assisted advertisers to promote improper conduct, the search engine can be held accountable as an accomplice,” said the lead prosecutor.
Contributed by @kleinmatic
TODAY IN SLATE
The Ebola Story
How our minds build narratives out of disaster.
The Budget Disaster That Completely Sabotaged the WHO’s Response to Ebola
PowerPoint Is the Worst, and Now It’s the Latest Way to Hack Into Your Computer
The Shooting Tragedies That Forged Canada’s Gun Politics
A Highly Unscientific Ranking of Crazy-Old German Beers
Welcome to 13th Grade!
Some high schools are offering a fifth year. That’s a great idea.
The Actual World
“Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.