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1:50 PM ET, June 23, 2008


 Top Items: 
Mel Watkins / New York Times:
George Carlin, 71, Irreverent Standup Comedian, Is Dead  —  George Carlin, the Grammy-Award winning standup comedian and actor who was hailed for his irreverent social commentary, poignant observations of the absurdities of everyday life and language, and groundbreaking routines like …
Ann Althouse / Althouse:
George Carlin died.
Glenn Greenwald / Salon:
The New Republic syndrome  —  (updated below)  —  The number one problem facing the Democratic Party is that, as events of the last week demonstrate, it continues to be plagued by The New Republic Syndrome, one of the most fatal political afflictions that exist.
Discussion: TalkLeft, Unfogged and Balloon Juice
Christy Hardin Smith / Firedoglake:
FISA: Turning Up The Pressure
Discussion: The G Spot and Slobber And Spittle
Jonathan Martin / The Politico:
First Obama attack book in the works  —  The same publisher that distributed the 2004 best-seller that took aim at John Kerry's Vietnam service is planning a summer release of what's scheduled to be the first critical book on Barack Obama.  —  Conservative journalist David Freddoso's …
Byron York / The Corner:
“Swiftboating”  —  It's common to see mentions in the press these days about some “swiftboating” of Barack Obama that is allegedly in the works, or might someday allegedly be in the works, or might someday be thought to be allegedly in the works.  While I'm sure there will be some hit jobs on Obama …
David Paul Kuhn / The Politico:
Three women who might join the GOP ticket  —  While the vice presidential slot may be John McCain's best means of wooing those Hillary Rodham Clinton supporters who remain loath to embrace Barack Obama, the Republican party is a thin source of politically viable women, leaving McCain with few top-tier options.
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:   McCain's Crucial 73 Days
Karl / protein wisdom:
Barack Obama in the tank for ethanol  —  Today's New York Times carries a piece from Larry Rohter on Barack Obama's many ties to the domestic ethanol racket, starting with campaign trips with former Sen. Tom Daschle: … The Obama-Daschle connection is much deeper than the article suggests.
Joe Klein / Swampland:
Too Good to Check  —  I have no way of knowing if this is true, though the source is excellent...but the word in Republican circles is that John McCain is quite frustrated by the vice presidential selection process because he can't go with any of his top three choices.  They are:
Discussion: MoJoBlog and Democratic Strategist
New York Times:
Is He the Ticket?  —  As the popular governor of Florida …
Brian Stelter / New York Times:
Reporters Say Networks Put Wars on Back Burner  —  Getting a story on the evening news isn't easy for any correspondent.  And for reporters in Iraq and Afghanistan, it is especially hard, according to Lara Logan, the chief foreign correspondent for CBS News.  So she has devised a solution when she is talking to the network.
Roger Kimball / Encounter Books:
Encounter Bids The New York York Times Farewell  —  Beginning today, June 23, 2008, Encounter Books will no longer send its books to The New York Times for review.  Of course, the editors at the Times are welcome to trot down to their local book emporium or visit to purchase our books …
William Kristol / New York Times:
Someone Else's Alex  —  The people at have a new Iraq ad that is, if they do say so themselves, their most effective ever.  Then again, for the group that brought us the “General Petraeus or General Betray Us?” ad last September, that might not be saying much.
Rebecca Traister / Salon:
Why Clinton voters say they won't support Obama  —  The attack of the PUMAs, or a dozen reasons why Clinton voters are still too angry to come home.  —  Hillary Clinton supporters wait for their candidate to arrive at the National Building Museum in Washington on June 7.
Ed Pilkington / Guardian:
Put oil firm chiefs on trial - scientist  —  James Hansen, one of the world's leading climate scientists, will today call for the chief executives of large fossil fuel companies to be put on trial for high crimes against humanity and nature, accusing them of actively spreading doubt …
Daniela Petroff / Associated Press:
Barack Obama inspires Milan men's runway styles  —  MILAN, Italy - The latest “first” for Barack Obama comes off the Milan runway.  —  Calling the U.S. presidential hopeful “the man of the moment,” Donatella Versace dedicated her Spring-Summer 2009 collection presented Saturday evening to Obama …
Scott W. Johnson / New York Post:
ANTI-TERROR OOPS  —  BARACK BUMBLES LEGAL QS  —  SPEAKING without a text in front of him, Barack Obama betrays a troubling lack of knowledge on important issues - such as the law and terrorism.  —  In his ABC interview last Monday, for example, Obama attacked the Bush approach on fighting terror.
Discussion: Don Surber and Power Line
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
Home Not-So-Sweet Home  —  “Owning a home lies at the heart of the American dream.”  So declared President Bush in 2002, introducing his “Homeownership Challenge” — a set of policy initiatives that were supposed to sharply increase homeownership, especially for minority groups.  —  Oops.
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 More Items: 
Political Perceptions:
Obama Will Decide: Is the Democrats' Message Flawed?
Discussion: The Swamp and Washington Wire
Douglas J. Feith / The Corner:
Of Rice, Mushrooms, and Lies
Richard Lardner / Associated Press:
White House Blocking Army's Plan To Overhaul Contracting System
Kevin Drum / Washington Monthly:
OBAMA vs. McCAIN ON THE ECONOMY....Fortune magazine has parallel …
Jill Zuckman / The Swamp:
Norm Coleman on war vote: ‘No, no, no’
David Whitford / Fortune:
The evolution of John McCain
Irwin M. Stelzer / Weekly Standard:
Obamanomics  —  How McCain can fight back—if he cares to.
Discussion: Angry Bear
Staten Island Advance:
Death of Frank Powers throws congressional race into turmoil
 Earlier Items: 
Washington Post / The Trail:
A Better Battery?  —  WANTED: A better electric car battery.
Discussion: Spin Cycle, and Cogitamus
Yuval Levin / The Corner:
Padding Obama  —  Barack Obama released his first general election ad …
Discussion: Betsy's Page and Commentary
Marc Ambinder:
Clinton And Obama To Campaign In PA (Likely)
Matthew Yglesias:
The Downward Spiral  —  Apparently John Bolton thinks that if Israel …
The Politico:
Obama kept Law Review balanced
Discussion: Ben Smith's Blogs and
Liz Hazelton / Daily Mail:
‘I despise Islamism’ says award winning author Ian McEwan in astonishing outburst
Discussion: Don Surber
Susan Page / USA Today:
Poll: Obama has edge over McCain
Peter Wallsten / Los Angeles Times:
Obama campaign targets black voters — carefully