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12:40 PM ET, December 30, 2008


 Top Items: 
Craig Schneider / Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
McKinney relief boat rammed by Israeli navy  —  A boat carrying international peace activists, including former Georgia congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, and medical supplies to the embattled Gaza Strip sailed back into a Lebanese port on Tuesday after being turned back and damaged by the Israeli navy, organizers of the trip said.
Max Socol / Jerusalem Post:
IDF launches YouTube Gaza channel  —  In the midst of its Gaza operations, the IDF is entering yet another conflict zone: the Internet.  The Israeli army announced yesterday the creation of its own YouTube channel, through which it will disseminate footage of precision bombing operations in the Gaza Strip …
Jeffrey Goldberg:
A Fatah Friend Writes: I'm Supporting the Israeli Air Force  —  It's a strange world, but there you have it.  I've been talking to friends of mine, former Palestinian Authority intelligence officials (ejected from power by the Hamas coup), and they tell me that not only are they rooting …
Discussion: Hot Air
Barak Ravid / Haaretz:
Defense establishment to recommend 48-hour truce with Hamas  —  The defense establishment on Tuesday said it would recommend that Prime Minister Ehud Olmert seek out a diplomatic initiative to abate the war against Hamas and embark on a 48-hour truce, before it becomes necessary to begin a significant ground invasion of the Gaza Strip.
Washington Post:
Israel Rejects Truce, Presses on With Gaza Strikes  —  Israel continued airstrikes against Gaza Strip targets for a fourth day on Tuesday, destroying civic and other buildings linked to the militant Hamas movement in a campaign Israeli leaders say will continue until the group is crippled.
Wall Street Journal:
Hamas Knows One Big Thing  —  If only it were a parable, the endless confrontation between Israel and its enemies would be the case of the hedgehog and the fox.  The fox, said the Greek poet Archilochus, knows many things, while the hedgehog knows one big thing.
Discussion: New York Times and Commentary
David Grossman / Haaretz:
Is Israel too imprisoned in the familiar ceremony of war?
Glenn Greenwald / Salon:
George Washington's warnings and U.S. policy towards Israel
Discussion: TalkLeft, CQ Politics and Guardian
Andy Barr / The Politico:
‘Magic Negro’ flap might help Saltsman  —  The controversy surrounding a comedy CD distributed by Republican National Committee chair candidate Chip Saltsman has not torpedoed his bid and might have inadvertently helped it.  —  Four days after news broke that the former Tennessee GOP chairman …
Adam Serwer / American Prospect:
PARSING BARACK THE MAGIC NEGRO.  —  I've been reading defenses of Rush Limbaugh's “Barack, The Magic Negro” on right wing blogs for a while now and I often get the impression that the people defending the song as satire don't actually get the point, and that they've never actually read David …
Ralph Z. Hallow / Washington Times:
EXCLUSIVE: RNC draft rips Bush's bailouts
Discussion: The Next Right and AmSpecBlog
Bob Herbert / New York Times:
Add Up the Damage  —  Does anyone know where George W. Bush is?  —  You don't hear much from him anymore.  The last image most of us remember is of the president ducking a pair of size 10s that were hurled at him in Baghdad.  —  We're still at war in Iraq and Afghanistan.
John Vinocur / International Herald Tribune:
From the left, a call to end the current Dutch notion of tolerance  —  AMSTERDAM: Two years ago, the Dutch could quietly congratulate themselves on having brought what seemed to be a fair measure of consensus and reason to the meanest intersection in their national political life …
Michael O'Brien / The Hill:
GOP warns against stimulus rush  —  Congressional Republicans on Monday criticized a $1 trillion stimulus as wasteful spending and signaled they will oppose having the bill ready by President-elect Obama's inauguration on Jan. 20.  —  Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) …
Discussion: Think Progress
Richard Cohen / Washington Post:
Reading Into Bush's Book List  —  In what without a doubt is the most astounding op-ed piece of the year, Karl Rove reveals that his friend and former boss, George W. Bush, has read probably hundreds of books over the course of his presidency.  One of them was Albert Camus' “The Stranger,” …
Amanda Hill / The 2008 Weblog Awards:
2008 Weblog Awards Finalists  —  Here is a complete list of the finalists for The 2008 Weblog Awards.  Finalists badges (hosted by Imageshack) will be available Wednesday.  Voting is scheduled to begin on January 5, 2009.  —  Please note that the names of the Technorati Autority categories have changed …
New York Times:
U.S. Agrees to a Stake in GMAC  —  WASHINGTON — The Treasury Department injected $5 billion into GMAC, the automobile financing company, as part of a deal announced Monday night that will let GMAC convert itself into a bank holding company to reduce its borrowing costs and thus borrow money at low rates from the Federal Reserve.
Silla Brush / The Hill:
White House adds $6 billion to auto bailout
Discussion: The Foundry
Associated Press:
Newdow to join legal challenge to inauguration prayer  —  A California physician and attorney whose legal fight against the words “under God” in the pledge of allegiance has drawn national attention now says he will join a lawsuit seeking the removal of all references to God and religion …
Wall Street Journal:
New Jersey Is the Perfect Bad Example  —  Obama should look here to see what high taxes do.  —  Madison, N.J.  —  When Barack Obama makes his New Year's resolutions, at the top of his list ought to be the following: “I will not allow America to become New Jersey.”  —  Think of it as our gift to the nation.
Discussion: TigerHawk
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 More Items: 
Paul Walsh / Minneapolis Star Tribune:
Canvassing Board nudges Franken's lead up to 50
Discussion: TalkLeft and
John Leland / New York Times:
Breaking Up Is Harder to Do After Housing Fall
Discussion: Law Blog
Lee Davidson / Deseret News:
Matheson again fights automatic pay hike
Discussion: Scared Monkeys
Jeremy W. Peters / City Room:
Interviewing for the Job of U.S. Senator
Discussion: Ben Smith's Blogs and
Extreme Mortman:
Top Ten Marketing Flops Bigger Than Caroline Kennedy
Sarah Abruzzese / The Politico:
Journos may not get inaugural spots
Scott / Power Line:
Discussion: Bloomberg
 Earlier Items: 
Washington Post:
A Crack in The System  —  By 1998, AIG Financial Products …
Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo:
Logan Robinson / Wall Street Journal:
Why Detroit Has an Especially Bad Union Problem
Discussion: Commentary