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2:35 PM ET, December 23, 2008


 Top Items: 
Richard Cohen / Washington Post:
Warren On?  Party Off.  —  Not that he was planning to attend, but Barack Obama should know that my sister's inauguration night party — the one for which she was preparing Obama Punch — has been canceled.  The notice went out over the weekend, by e-mail and word of mouth …
E. J. Dionne Jr / Washington Post:
A Gamble for Obama  —  By inviting Pastor Rick Warren to give the inaugural invocation, President-elect Barack Obama has alienated some of his friends on the left.  By accepting, Warren has enraged some of his allies on the right.  —  Obama and Warren have helped each other in the past, and both know exactly what they're doing.
Digby / Hullabaloo:
One Way Street  —  I saw something very interesting today on MSNBC.  Barnicle, filling in for Matthews on Hardball, hosted Reverend Eugene Rivers, a well respected, uncontroversial African American preacher, and Mike Rogers, strident gay activist.  —  Loaded for bear, Rivers came out firing …
Susan Kelleher / Seattle Times:
Seattle refuses to use salt; roads “snow packed” by design  —  To hear the city's spin, Seattle's road crews are making “great progress” in clearing the ice-caked streets.  —  But it turns out “plowed streets” in Seattle actually means “snow-packed,” as in there's snow and ice left on major arterials by design.
John O'Sullivan / Wall Street Journal:
Conservative Snobs Are Wrong About Palin  —  I know Maggie Thatcher.  The two women have a lot in common.  —  Being listed in fourth place for Time magazine's “Person of the Year,” as Sarah Palin was for 2008, sounds a little like being awarded the Order of Purity (Fourth Class).
Kyle Hopkins / Anchorage Daily News:
Palin invited to speak at conservative gathering
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
The Bush Legacy  —  Ed Gillespie's RealClearPolitics article on “Myths and Facts About the Real Bush Record” is about as stupid and dishonest as you'd expect.  But after “debunking” five perfectly accurate alleged myths, Gillespie gets into the whopper that really gets my goat:
Discussion: Eschaton and Jules Crittenden
Biden: Report to clear Obama, staff in Blagojevich matter  —  WASHINGTON (CNN) — Vice President-elect Joseph Biden said Tuesday an internal report will show that neither President-elect Barack Obama nor his aides had inappropriate contacts with embattled Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich.
The Huffington Post:   Emanuel Heads To Africa As Blagojevich Report Drops
Domenico Montanaro / MSNBC:
Discussion: TPM Election Central
Ezra Klein / American Prospect:
THERE IS NOTHING ANYONE CAN DO ABOUT IT.  —  Over at BoingBoing, Clay Shirky engages in a bit of self-congratulatory schadenfreude for predicting the collapse of the newspaper business model back in 1993.  And no doubt: He was prescient.  But like a lot of folks (many of them named Jeff Jarvis) …
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
What Might Have Been  —  Ezra Klein makes the case that the decline …
Discussion: Eschaton
The Politico:
Obama to use Lincoln Bible  —  From the transition team:  —  “Washington, D.C. - On January 20th, President-elect Barack Obama will take the oath of office using the same Bible upon which President Lincoln was sworn in at his first inauguration.  The Bible is currently part of the collections of the Library of Congress.
Katharine Q. Seelye / The Caucus:
Obama to Take Oath on Same Bible as Lincoln
Bill Gertz / Washington Times:
Obama wants Bush war team to stay  —  Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates has asked most Bush administration political appointees except those targeted for dismissal to stay on in the Pentagon until replaced by the Obama administration in the coming months.  —  “I have received authorization …
Bill Gertz / Washington Times:
EXCLUSIVE: Obama wants Bush war team to stay
Discussion: Open Left and Fox News
Washington Post:
Motorists Rescued After Massive Water Main Break  —  Aging Pipe Bursts, Sending Wall of Water onto River Road  —  A massive underground pipe rupture flooded River Road with four feet of rapidly swirling water this morning — trapping motorists, blocking a major commuter artery linking Washington …
Associated Press:
Huge water main break traps drivers in DC suburb
Maggie Haberman / New York Post:
O, MY BOD!  IT'S BEACH BARACK  —  NEXT PREZ HEATS UP HAWAII  —  Just call him “Ab"-bama.  —  Buff-bodied President-elect Barack Obama put his chiseled frame on full display - as seen on Page 1 - during a stroll in Hawaii while on vacation with his family.
Bob Owens / Pajamas Media:
The Op-Ed the New York Times Wouldn't Run  —  An FBI informant's response to Bill Ayers' rewriting of history got the cold shoulder — but you can read it here.  —  On December 5, the New York Times afforded former domestic terrorist Bill Ayers a chance to publish an op-ed …
Child porn investigation catches California lawyer  —  (CNN) — A lawyer who served in the Clinton administration and more recently was an adviser to California's lieutenant governor pleaded guilty to a child porn charge in a San Diego federal court Monday.  —  Wade Rowland Sanders admitted …
Discussion: Tabloid Edition
Amanda Terkel / Think Progress:
Shuster Pushes Inhofe On Global Warming Skepticism: 'If There Is A Hoax, Isn't It This Report Of Yours?'  —  Earlier this month, Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) released a report citing “more than 650 international scientists” who back up his claims that manmade global warming is a hoax.
Discussion: Washington Monthly
Ezra Klein / American Prospect:
APPLY ECONOMICS TO ECONOMISTS.  —  Over e-mail, Dean Baker offers an explanation why so few economists accurately saw the trembling instability beneath the economy, much less sounded the alarm.  “They didn't know” is not an operative explanation.  The analysis was public …
Discussion: Matthew Yglesias and Kevin Drum
James H. Burnett III /
Quirky Festivus holiday gains followers  —  Those who celebrate Festivus display a pole instead of a tree and air grievances instead of exchanging gifts.  —  JBURNETT@MIAMIHERALD.COM  —  Alexandra Casuso was only 11 years old when Festivus made its TV debut on Seinfeld in 1997 …
Discussion: Hot Air and Booman Tribune
New York Times:
As Economy Dips, Arrests for Shoplifting Soar  —  Richard R. Johnson is the first to admit it was a bad idea.  —  Recently laid off from a job building trailers in Elkhart, Ind., Mr. Johnson came up a dollar short at Martin's Supermarket last month when he went to buy a $4.99 bottle of sleep medication.
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 More Items: 
Lynn Sweet:
Emanuel House chief of staff Smith tapped for White House spot.
Discussion: Think Progress
Amanda Terkel / Think Progress:
White House: Expect more pardons from Bush.»
Xinhua News Agency:
Zimbabwe asks Bush to leave office quietly
Discussion: Democracy in America
Little Green Footballs:
NPR Rewrites Rathergate History to Cover Up Fraud
Discussion: NPR
Gay groups angry at Pope remarks
Discussion: Latest
Saskia Scholtes / Financial Times:
Mortgage activity surges at US banks
Discussion: 24/7 Wall St. and naked capitalism
Daniel / Crooked Timber:
The future is a shoe being thrown at a human face - forever!
Discussion: Matthew Yglesias and Kevin Drum
 Earlier Items: 
Wall Street Journal:
Existing, New Home Sales Plunge
Discussion: and
Wall Street Journal:
The President Comforts a Marine Mom
Discussion: Gateway Pundit
Ian Black / Guardian:
Saudi Arabian girl, eight, married off to 58-year-old is denied divorce
Eugene Robinson / Washington Post:
The Price Of Their Security  —  Understanding isn't the same as forgiving.
Discussion: The Mahablog and
Peter J. Parisi / Washington Times:
Why do retailers fear using the word ‘Christmas’?