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2:25 PM ET, January 14, 2009


 Top Items: 
Jonathan Chait / The New Republic:
Why Liberals Aren't Angry Over Obama's Dinner  —  I actually don't find it terribly surprising that liberals haven't shown any outrage over Barack Obama's dinner party with George Will, Charles Krauthammer, Bill Kristol, and David Brooks.  I'll get to my hypothesis why liberals aren't upset in a moment.
Steve Thomma / Yahoo! News:
Obama attends conservative dinner party  —  Featured Topics: - Barack Obama - Presidential Transition  —  This could ruin their reputation: President-elect Barack Obama Tuesday evening attending a dinner party at the home of conservative columnist George Will, attended by fellow conservatives William Kristol and David Brooks.
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:   Chait on Krauthammer
Paul / Power Line:   AN EVENING WELL SPENT  —  Barack Obama reportedly had dinner …
Michael D. Shear / Washington Post:
Obama Pulls Up a Chair at George Will's House
Jeffrey Goldberg / New York Times:
Why Israel Can't Make Peace With Hamas  —  IN the summer of 2006, at a moment when Hezbollah rockets were falling virtually without pause on northern Israel, Nizar Rayyan, husband of four, father of 12, scholar of Islam and unblushing executioner, confessed to me one of his frustrations.
Thomas L. Friedman / New York Times:
Israel's Goals in Gaza?  —  I have only one question about Israel's military operation in Gaza: What is the goal?  Is it the education of Hamas or the eradication of Hamas?  I hope that it's the education of Hamas.  Let me explain why.  —  I was one of the few people who argued back in 2006 …
Jazz Shaw / The Moderate Voice:
New York's Perfect Storm of Appointments
Discussion: Hot Air
Brian Wingfield / Forbes:
Geithner's Tax Troubles Are Serious
Jonathan Weisman / Wall Street Journal:
Geithner's Hearing Is Postponed
Discussion: Gawker, EconoPundit and New York Times
Bob Woodward / Washington Post:
Detainee Tortured, Says U.S. Official  —  Trial Overseer Cites ‘Abusive’ Methods Against 9/11 Suspect  —  The top Bush administration official in charge of deciding whether to bring Guantanamo Bay detainees to trial has concluded that the U.S. military tortured a Saudi national who allegedly planned …
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
The Legal Cost of Torture
Discussion: Kevin Drum and American Street
Michael Calderone / Michael Calderone's Blogs:
Obama meets with liberal columnists  —  Obama held a meeting with several columnists and liberal commentators this morning, following up on last night's dinner with conservative writers, according to a source with knowledge of the meeting.  Some of the writers there today are clearly on the liberal side, while others more moderate.
Michael Calderone / Michael Calderone's Blogs:
Obama breaks Times tradition  —  Although New York Times columnists David Brooks and Bill Kristol sat down with Barack Obama last night, the paper's White House team still hasn't had the opportunity to do so since Election Day.  —  Unlike recent White House occupants—such as George W. Bush …
Discussion: Riehl World View
Jonathan Martin / The Politico:
Silence of the lamb chops  —  Call it a charm offensive or a high-level “Listening Tour,” but Barack Obama is already signaling that he intends to break with the current president in one obvious way: hearing from his critics.  —  Obama Tuesday night trekked to the Chevy Chase, Md. …
Discussion: and Marc Ambinder
Diana Washington Valdez / El Paso Times:
U.S. military report warns ‘sudden collapse’ of Mexico is possible  —  President-elect Barack Obama listens as Mexico's President Felipe Calderon makes a statement to reporters in Washington, Monday, Jan. 12, 2009.  Mexico is one of two countries that “bear consideration for a rapid and sudden collapse …
Discussion: Pat Dollard and Vox Popoli
Lydia Saad / Gallup:
Bush Presidency Closes With 34% Approval, 61% Disapproval  —  Three-quarters of Republicans approve of Bush, up slightly from recent months  — USA - Democrats - Government and Politics - Independents - Presidential Job Approval - Republicans - The Presidency - Americas - Northern America
Harold Meyerson / Washington Post:
The Money-Changers  —  As Barack Obama looks back to Franklin Roosevelt's first inaugural address — the only other such address that came smack in the middle of an economic meltdown — I hope he pays special heed to Roosevelt's words on America's bankers, who then as now had plunged the nation into an economic abyss.
San Francisco Chronicle:
BART officer arrested on murder warrant in NY Day shooting  —  (01-14) 00:13 PST Oakland — The BART police officer who fatally shot an unarmed man on an Oakland train platform and then refused to explain his actions to investigators was arrested Tuesday in Nevada on suspicion of murder, authorities said.
Dexter Filkins / New York Times:
Afghan Schoolgirls Undeterred by Attack  —  KANDAHAR, Afghanistan — One morning two months ago, Shamsia Husseini and her sister were walking through the muddy streets to the local girls school when a man pulled alongside them on a motorcycle and posed what seemed like an ordinary question.
Josh Kraushaar / The Politico:
GOP could win 3 key Senate seats  —  Despite the shock of three recent Senate retirements in battleground states, Republicans find themselves unusually well-positioned to weather the loss and compete for those open seats in 2010 — a stark contrast from the dismal early recruiting environment in 2008.
Discussion: MyDD
Daily Express:
ROURKE: ‘BUSH WAS IN THE WRONG PLACE AT THE WRONG TIME’  —  Actor MICKEY ROURKE sympathises with U.S. President GEORGE W. BUSH - insisting he doesn't know how any politician could have successfully navigated America after the 9/11 attacks on New York.  —  The Hollywood tough-guy spoke …
Newsdesk / Clout St:
Blagojevich oversees Senate swearing-in as impeachment trial looms  —  Starting around noon, you can view live video here:  —  SPRINGFIELD—Gov. Rod Blagojevich today made his first appearance at the Capitol since his arrest last month on federal corruption charges, overseeing the swearing …
Brian Ross / ABCNEWS:
Bin Laden Challenges Obama in New Audio Message  —  “Is America Capable of Fighting Us After Bush?”  Osama Asks.  —  In a direct challenge to President-elect Barack Obama, Osama bin Laden questions whether America “is capable to keep fighting us for more years” in a new audio message attributed …
Andrew Malcolm / Top of the Ticket:
Barack Obama's money machine: Now he's selling orange juice!  —  We've written here before about the compulsion of Barack Obama's campaign and transition team and inauguration team to send out e-mails seemingly every day pleading for more money and more money, even weeks after he won the whole national election.
House In Disorder: Tennessee Democrats Elect Republican Speaker  —  The mood in the hall of the General Assembly Tuesday morning oozed with anxious anticipation.  —  Republicans stood poised to take control of the Tennessee General Assembly for the first time in nearly 140 years.
Betsy Rothstein / The Hill:
Bachmann's sudden transformation  —  Freshman members of Congress are supposed to be quiet, unobtrusive, deferential.  Michele Bachmann must have missed the memo.  —  At her first State of the Union address in 2007, the petite Minnesota GOP congresswoman with the sparkling blue eyes …
JD Johannes / Outside the Wire:
Joe the Plumber—Out of His Depth  —  Previously in this space I remarked that PJTV's sending Joe The Plumber to Israel felt like a shark-jumping publicity stunt and it was a risk that could put PJTV's credibility at risk.  —  After watching a few reports , I felt Joe was fine, when he related things as the average Joe that he is.
Wall Street Journal:
Obama Should Act Like He Won  —  As we anxiously await the debut of the Obama administration, we hear more and more about the incoming president's “post-partisan” instincts.  He has filled his cabinet with relics of the centrist Clinton years.  He has engaged the evangelical pastor Rick Warren …
Discussion: Swampland
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 More Items: 
TA Frank / Guardian:
The change we need  —  No one thought Al Gore would be a …
Marc Ambinder:
A GOP Civil War-Ish
Lori Aratani / Washington Post:
At Rallies, Giving ‘Please’ a Chance
Discussion: and The Raw Story
Joe Gandelman / The Moderate Voice:
Obama You Tube: You, Too, Can Get Involved In The Inauguration
Discussion: The Impolitic
Jules Crittenden:
Hurl-Blogging The Inaugur-A-Palooza, The Dry Heaves
Rasmussen Reports:
Majority Rates Bush as One of America's Worst Presidents
Discussion: TPM Election Central
Vanessa Allen / Daily Mail:
Robbery suspect goes free after judge stops trial on first day …
Camille Paglia / Salon:
Obama's early stumbles
Discussion: Commentary and
 Earlier Items: 
Mickey Kaus / Kausfiles:
We Want Vetoes!  —  UAW President Gettelfinger pisses …
Discussion: Kevin Drum
Bruce Ackerman / Slate:
Impeach Jay Bybee
Associated Press:
Bush declares emergency for inauguration
Discussion: The Impolitic
Natasha Korecki / Chicago Sun Times:
Feds play candid camera with Gov. Blagojevich
Discussion: Hot Air and The Capitol Fax Blog
Toronto Star:
Canada votes alone for Israel
Discussion: The Corner
Andy Barr / The Politico:
Poll finds low trust in feds
Discussion: and Think Progress