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11:30 AM ET, December 17, 2013

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
New York Times:
A Powerful Rebuke of Mass Surveillance  —  For the first time since the revelation of the National Security Agency's vast dragnet of all Americans' telephone records, a federal court has ruled that such surveillance is “significantly likely” to be unconstitutional.
RELATED:
Bradley Brooks / Associated Press:
Snowden Petitions Brazil For Asylum In Exchange For Help With Spying  —  RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden says he would be willing to help Brazil investigate NSA spying on its soil, but could not fully participate without being granted political asylum …
Scott Lemieux / American Prospect:
Four Takeaways from Yesterday's NSA Ruling  —  Yesterday, U.S. District Court Judge Richard J. Leon ruled that the National Security Agency's extensive collection of “metadata”—as revealed by Edward Snowden earlier this year—is likely to have violated the Fourth Amendment.
Sheryl Gay Stolberg / New York Times:
‘Passionate’ Judge Has Record of Wrestling With Thorny Issues, and the U.S. Government
Charlie Savage / New York Times:
Judge Questions Legality of N.S.A. Phone Records
Ian Millhiser / ThinkProgress:
This Is The Most Important Paragraph In The Court Decision Against The NSA
Orin Kerr / The Volokh Conspiracy:
Preliminary Thoughts on Judge Leon's Opinion
Josh Gerstein / Politico:   Judge: NSA phone program likely unconstitutional
Associated Press:
Judge's word on NSA program won't be the last
Discussion: Associated Press
David Nather / Reuters:
Next Obamacare crisis: Small-business costs?  —  Think the canceled health policies hurt the Obamacare cause?  There's another political time bomb lurking that could explode not too long before next year's elections: rate hikes for small businesses.  —  Like the canceled individual health plans …
Discussion: Talking Points Memo and Politico
RELATED:
Alexandra Jaffe / The Hill:
McConnell, challenger neck-and-neck in poll
Alexander Burns / Politico:
Pro-Mitch McConnell ad links him to Rand Paul
Politico:
Immigration's next hurdle: Obamacare
Discussion: The PJ Tatler
Ron Fournier / NationalJournal.com:
‘This Is the End of the Presidency’  —  Tracking the same horrible second-term path as Bush, can Obama learn from the past?  —  Claiming a mandate he never had, the newly reelected president foisted a bold agenda upon Congress and the public, then watched it collapse within months …
Discussion: ABC News and Hit & Run
David Weigel / Slate:
Why 60 Minutes Tanked the NSA Story: The Producers Theory  —  It'll be a good 30 years until I can start collecting Social Security checks, and I can't say where I was when JFK was shot, so I'm not really in 60 Minutes' target audience.  * Other reporters, who have closely covered the NSA story …
Discussion: Guardian, New York Magazine and Reuters
RELATED:
Erik Wasson / The Hill:
Senate poised to approve budget  —  The Senate is poised to approve the two-year budget deal on Tuesday, but the tally is not expected to match the landslide in the House.  —  The bill, which sets top-line spending levels for 2014 and 2015, is on track to just barely get the 60 votes it needs to clear the upper chamber.
Discussion: Washington Monthly and Roll Call
RELATED:
Marc A. Thiessen / Washington Post:
Budget deal shows the GOP has PTSD
Discussion: Power Line
Washington Post:
Obama suffers most from year of turmoil, poll finds  —  President Obama is ending his fifth year in office matching the worst public approval ratings of his presidency, with record numbers of Americans saying they disapprove of his job performance and his once-hefty advantages over Republicans …
Quinnipiac News + Events:
Release Detail  —  December 17, 2013 - Iowa Gov's Approval, Reelection Prospects Improve, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Christie Tops Clinton By 5 Points In 2016 Race  —  Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad's reelection prospects are improving as voters approve 58 - 32 percent of the job he is doing …
Bret Stephens / Wall Street Journal:
Of Jane Fonda and Pope Francis  —  The pontiff understands the power of moral example.  Today's liberal high priests do not.  —  In the same week that Pope Francis was named Time's Person of the Year, word arrived of the charitable contributions made by the Jane Fonda Foundation.
mynews13.com:
George Zimmerman is selling his original artwork on eBay  —  SANFORD —  It appears George Zimmerman has turned to painting, and is selling his own, original artwork on eBay not one week after prosecutors dropped domestic violence charges against him.  —  Now the painting has a bid of almost $100,000.
Rick Kissell / Variety:
Fox News Remains Ratings Champ As 2013 Comes to Close  —  It and rivals CNN, MSNBC down from last year  —  Fox News Channel maintained its grip on the cable-news network ratings prize in 2013, drawing more viewers than the combined averages of CNN, MSNBC and HLN.
Jordan Zakarin / BuzzFeed:
Shia LaBeouf Apologizes After Plagiarizing Artist Daniel Clowes For His New Short Film  —  UPDATED: The similarities between LaBeouf's HowardCantour.com and Clowes' Justin M. Damiano are astounding.  “In my excitement and naiveté as an amateur filmmaker, I got lost in the creative process …
Discussion: Telegraph, Gawker and The Verge
Dave Levinthal / The Center for Public …:
How Washington starves its election watchdog  —  FEC hamstrung by political bickering, case backlogs, staff departures — even Chinese hackers  —  Just after the federal government shut down Oct. 1, and one of the government's more dysfunctional agencies stopped functioning altogether, Chinese hackers picked their moment to attack.
Discussion: CNN and The Verge
John Hinderaker / Power Line:
Is A Big Chill On the Way?  —  As Steve noted a little while ago, the Northern states have been in a deep freeze for a while now.  The Minneapolis Star Tribune reports that northern Minnesota hasn't had a six-day stretch colder than the one the state has just suffered through since the Nixon administration, 1972.
 
 
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 More Items: 
David Brooks / New York Times:
The Thought Leader  —  Little boys and girls in ancient Athens grew …
Nathan L. Gonzales / Rothenblog:
How the Calendar Will Influence GOP Senate Primaries
Scott Jaschik / Inside Higher Ed:
Too Risky for Boulder?  —  Patricia Adler stunned her students …
Discussion: CBS Denver and The Raw Story
Jason Horowitz / New York Times:
Obama's Library, Advisers' Dream
Discussion: Talking Points Memo
Chris Kirkham / The Huffington Post:
Building A Brand  —  Accusations that schools leave students …
Discussion: susiemadrak.com and ThinkProgress
Lucas Grindley / Advocate:
The Advocate's Person of the Year: Pope Francis
Brendan Sasso / The Hill:
Tech execs to confront Obama on spying
 Earlier Items: 
Anneta Konstantinides / ABC News:
Mike Huckabee to Launch ‘Huckabee Post’
Katie Thomas / New York Times:
Glaxo Says It Will Stop Paying Doctors to Promote Drugs
Juan Williams / The Hill:
Republicans must see the light on combatting poverty
 

 
From Techmeme:

Nick Statt / CNET:
Exclusive: Nike fires majority of FuelBand team, will stop making wearable hardware

Rod Boshart / Quad City Times:
Microsoft brings $1.13 billion data center to Iowa

Peter Kafka / Re/code:
Beats Bites the Bullet, and Starts Selling Subscriptions From Apple's App

 
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