By Margaux Stack-Babich and Bill Dedman
Today's reading from the world of investigative reporting.
Story of the day: The Obama administration's victories in the war on terror are built on the back of a powerful and hidden program. As the Washington Post reports in a revealing investigation, "in…three years, the administration has built an extensive apparatus for using drones to carry out targeted killings of suspected terrorists and stealth surveillance of other adversaries." This piece explore the consequences that come with reliance on this technology and the multi-billion dollar industry that has grown around it, observing "no president has ever relied so extensively on the secret killing of individuals to advance the nation's security goals."
- Reuters: Special report: Energy giant hid behind shell companies in "land grab"
- Wired: FDA won't act against antibiotic use on farms
- The Statesman: Members of Congress collect thousands in state pensions; Texan watchdog group calls for more transparency at the state level
- The Associated Press: Six years later, Katrina victims fight FEMA debts
- The Independent: Murdoch's £100m plan to settle hacking cases before they get to court; News International will use legal fund to prevent further revelations
- ProPublica: As the practice of fracking in America comes under increasing scrutiny, it flourishes in parts of Canada, where "some of the largest fracking operations anywhere on earth" have been built or are under construction
- NPR: How do you hold mentally ill offenders accountable?The latest piece from a continuing investigation into the violence in California's psychiatric hospitals. Read the full feature here
- The Philadelphia Inquirer: Philly cops net big bounty via court overtime and fudged paperwork
- ABC Eyewitness News: An over-budget and behind schedule World Trade Center Transportation Hub will not receive fireproofing treatment as "it meets required fire resistance ratings"
- The Chicago Tribune: Illinois hospital oversight limited; A suicide and other violations at Jackson Park Hospital show regulators can't ensure dangers are corrected
- PBS NewsHour in collaboration with the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting: In the Peruvian Amazon, extensive gold-mining operations have stirred major environmental concerns over mercury contamination in fish, fish-eating wildlife and humans
- Politico: Jon Huntsman multi-million super PAC seeks filing delay, may get to keep its donors secret for another few weeks
- The Salt Lake Tribune: A review of the best and worst discoveries from the Utah Freedom of Information in 2011
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Margaux Stack-Babich writes about investigative reporting for msnbc.com. Bill Dedman is an investigative reporter for msnbc.com.