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7:55 PM ET, December 29, 2006


 Top Items: 
Washington Post:
A Death Sentence Affirmed  —  Saddam Hussein's trial was imperfect.  But a perfect trial would have yielded the same result.  —  WITH TUESDAY'S decision by an Iraqi appeals body to affirm the death sentence of Saddam Hussein, the execution of the former tyrant could take place within weeks.
New York Times:
The Rush to Hang Saddam Hussein  —  The important question was never really about whether Saddam Hussein was guilty of crimes against humanity.  The public record is bulging with the lengthy litany of his vile and unforgivable atrocities: genocidal assaults against the Kurds …
Matt Apuzzo / Associated Press:
Saddam Asks U.S. to Block Execution  —  Lawyers for Saddam Hussein on Friday made a last-minute appeal to an American court to avert execution in Iraq, asking a judge to block his transfer from U.S. custody to the hands of Iraqi officials.  —  Hussein's lawyers filed documents Friday afternoon asking …
Marc Santora / New York Times:
Iraq Prepares to Execute Hussein  —  The close of the final chapter on the brutal reign of Saddam Hussein drew ever closer today, as Iraqi officials prepared the last legal notice necessary before his execution, a red card that will be presented to the former dictator to inform him that his end is near, Iraqi officials said.
Steve Bainbridge / Professor Bainbridge's Journal:
Hanging Saddam  —  The NYT opines: … That's certainly true, but hanging Saddam is still the right thing to do.  —  I agree with - or, to put it more precisely, I give religious assent to - Pope John Paul II's teaching in Evangelium vitae that society:
Discussion: The Moderate Voice
River / Baghdad Burning:
End of Another Year...  You know your country is in trouble when:  —  The UN has to open a special branch just to keep track of the chaos and bloodshed, UNAMI.  —  Abovementioned branch cannot be run from your country.  —  The politicians who worked to put your country in this sorry state …
Terry McCarthy / ABCNEWS:
Saddam to Be Turned Over to Iraqis Today, Official Says
Discussion: Captain's Quarters
Mohammed / IRAQ THE MODEL:
Year 2007 will definitely be without Saddam walking on the ground....  It's very imminent now and might become a fact at any minute.  —  The situation in Baghdad is tense now and US and Iraqi forces are heavily deployed on the streets.  —  We're hearing and reading more confirmations …
Discussion: The Strata-Sphere and Wizbang
Joseph Lieberman / Washington Post:
Why We Need More Troops in Iraq  —  I've just spent 10 days traveling in the Middle East and speaking to leaders there, all of which has made one thing clearer to me than ever: While we are naturally focused on Iraq, a larger war is emerging.  On one side are extremists and terrorists led …
Ann Althouse / Althouse:
Here's the post where I take on Ron Bailey of Reason Magazine.  —  Ron Bailey has put up a long attack on me on the Reason Magazine blog.  It's his version of what happened at the Liberty Fund colloquium on Frank S. Meyer, which I've alluded to but avoided talking about in detail.
Radley Balko / Reason Magazine:
Ann Althouse responds to Ron Bailey here .  —  It is a bizarre response.
Discussion: Daily Pundit
Hindrocket / Power Line:
SOME THOUGHTS ON MOONBATTERY  —  A few days ago, radio talk show host Scott Hennen posted an email he received from a soldier in Iraq who witnessed John Kerry's visit to the troops in Baghdad.  This soldier offered his own observations to the effect that Kerry's welcome was less than warm …
Housework cuts breast cancer risk  —  Women who exercise by doing the housework can reduce their risk of breast cancer, a study suggests.  —  The research on more than 200,000 women from nine European countries found doing household chores was far more cancer protective than playing sport.
Discussion: Norwegianity and Vox Popoli
Steve Benen / Political Animal:
BUCKING RUBINOMICS.... Last week, Paul Krugman offered the incoming Democratic majority some advice: do not place deficit reduction at the top of the priority list.  —  As Krugman explained, former Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin helped convince the party in the 1990s that deficit reduction was key to fiscal and budgetary policy.
Lawrence Downes / New York Times:
Middle School Girls Gone Wild  —  It's hard to write this without sounding like a prig.  But it's just as hard to erase the images that planted the idea for this essay, so here goes.  The scene is a middle school auditorium, where girls in teams of three or four are bopping to pop songs at a student talent show.
Will / Attytood:
Weird science  —  This may be one of the more bizarre stories we've seen (h/t Daily Kos) recently, which is saying a lot.  Your federal government is apparently unwilling to investigate whether or not the Grand Canyon was created by the Biblical flood of Noah just 6,000 years ago.
Daily Mail:
Ken plans Trafalgar Square street party to celebrate 50 years of Castro  —  Ken Livingstone is planning a "massive festival" across London to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Fidel Castro's Cuban revolution.  —  The event, to be staged in 2009, will involve street parties …
THE SITUATION ROOM  —  Saddam Hussein's Final Hours; James Brown's Life Celebrated at the Apollo  —  THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT.  THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.  —  ED HENRY, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Thanks, Christine.  And to our viewers …
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 More Items: 
Barbara O'Brien / Crooks and Liars:
A (Pretty) Short History of Wingnutism
David Millikin / Agence France Presse:
Rice still struggling for success after two years as top US diplomat
Washington Wire:
Democrats to Push Ethics Reforms
Discussion: MyDD and Sirotablog
Edmund Sanders / Los Angeles Times:
Ethiopians are split over their foreign invasion
Jonathan Tasini / The Huffington Post:
Ford Prolonged Our Nightmare, Impeaching Bush Will Heal Our Nation
Anne Flaherty / Associated Press:
Bush detainee rules likely to be revisited
Michael Luo / New York Times:
Crisis in Housing Adds to Miseries of Iraq Mayhem
 Earlier Items: 
Tkarr / Save the Internet Blog:
AT&T Yields to Neutrality, Paves Path to Congress
Dave Kopel / TCS Daily:
The Other War in Ethiopia  —  The world is watching Ethiopia's war …
Laura Maggi / New Orleans Times-Picayune:
7 N.O. cops indicted in killings on bridge
Discussion: Hot Air, TalkLeft and Polimom Says
Mary Katharine Ham / Blog's TownHall Blog:
HamNation: Tour of Things That Did Not Happen in Durham
Frank Luntz / NY Daily News:
How America's Mayor can beat America's maverick
Diana West / Washington Times:
A question for 2007  —  Taking a whack at prognostication …
Discussion: Power Line

From Techmeme:

Alex Heath / The Verge:
Meta details Llama 3: 8B- and 70B-parameter models, a focus on reducing false refusals, and an upcoming model trained on 15T+ tokens that has 400B+ parameters

David Pierce / The Verge:
Google announces internal reorganizations, including an AI-focused Platforms and Devices group overseeing Pixel, Android, Chrome, and more, led by Rick Osterloh

Bill Toulas / BleepingComputer:
Europol and 19 countries make 37 arrests and disrupt phishing-as-a-service platform LabHost in a year-long operation with help from Microsoft, Intel, and others

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