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8:50 PM ET, January 17, 2009

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Jeff Zeleny / New York Times:
Obama Arrives in Washington After Train Trip  —  PHILADELPHIA — President-elect Barack Obama stepped onto a vintage train car, built at a time when a black man's ascendancy to the presidency was impossible in America, and traveled to Washington on Saturday in a three-day prelude to his inauguration as the country's 44th president.
RELATED:
Associated Press:
Obama rides the rails to DC, packing nation's hope  —  Featured Topics: - Barack Obama - Presidential Transition  —  WASHINGTON - Invoking hope and history, President-elect Barack Obama rolled into the capital city Saturday night pledging to help bring the nation “a new Declaration of Independence” …
CNN:
Dispatches from Obama Express: End of the line
Discussion: The Daily Politics
Steven Erlanger / New York Times:
Israel Declares It Will Cease Fire; U.N. School Hit  —  JERUSALEM — Prime Minister Ehud Olmert of Israel announced late Saturday night that the Israeli military would begin a unilateral cease-fire in Gaza within hours while negotiations continued on how to stop the resupply of Hamas through smuggling from Egypt.
Discussion: QandO, TIME.com and Truthdig
RELATED:
BBC:
Israel declares ceasefire in Gaza
Discussion: Firedoglake and Jules Crittenden
Steven Erlanger / New York Times:
Weighing Crimes and Ethics in the Fog of Urban Warfare
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:
Obama Announces “Organizing for America”  —  President-elect Barack Obama announced the formation of a new group known as “Organizing for America” that aims to continue the grassroots advocacy that the former Illinois Senator began in his presidential campaign.
Discussion: Macsmind, 24Ahead and TIME.com
RELATED:
Marc Ambinder:
Obama For America Becomes Organizing For America  —  PHILADELPHIA, PA — The Obama political machine is merging with the Democratic National Committee.  —  The President-elect launched Obama 2.0, or Organizing for America, this morning with a YouTube video.
Agence France Presse:
Obama refuses to surrender Blackberry … Despite legal and security hurdles, president-elect Barack Obama says he has a plan to retain his beloved Blackberry once he moves into the White House next week.  —  Interviewed by CNN Friday, Obama said the smartphone was among the tools …
Mark Steyn / Orange County Register:
Our permanent state of routine emergency  —  With government, mission creep is the defining feature.  —  Recommend  —  In just about his last act as president, George W. Bush has declared Washington, D.C., a federal disaster area.  —  No, seriously.  I'm not setting up some lame-o punchline here …
Discussion: Hot Air
Washington Post:
The Growing Foreclosure Crisis  —  One oft-repeated assertion no longer holds true.  Those in trouble are not, primarily, lower-income borrowers.  The foreclosure crisis has become a wave, afflicting neighborhoods of every stripe — but particularly communities created by the boom itself.
Eric Posner / The Volokh Conspiracy:
Does Holder's “waterboarding is torture” comment implicitly commit him to prosecuting Bush administration officials?  Ever-hopeful observers say yes, but Holder's statement that waterboarding is torture is hardly news; his soon-to-be boss has said the same thing.  The chances of prosecution remain slim for diverse reasons.
RELATED:
Scott Shane / New York Times:
Remarks on Torture May Force New Administration's Hand
Discussion: Daily Kos
Bloomberg:
Florida Fund Manager Missing; Clients Say Money Gone  —  Jan. 17 (Bloomberg) — Arthur Nadel, a hedge-fund manager in Sarasota, Florida, has disappeared and clients are concerned they may have lost hundreds of millions of dollars, according to law enforcement officials.
New York Times:
Poll Finds Faith in Obama, Mixed With Patience  —  President-elect Barack Obama is riding a powerful wave of optimism into the White House, with Americans confident he can turn the economy around but prepared to give him years to deal with the crush of problems he faces starting Tuesday …
Discussion: TalkLeft and TIME.com
Jonathan Martin / The Politico:
Obama tries to seduce Republicans  —  It's no secret Barack Obama is trying to seduce Republicans these days.  But his conservative courting runs much deeper and wider than is publicly known.  —  Obama has had meetings with his former opponent John McCain, GOP congressional leaders …
Carrie Budoff Brown / The Politico:
Obama may not lift stem cell limits  —  PHILADELPHIA - President-elect Barack Obama signaled Friday that he might not use his executive authority to reverse Bush-era limits on stem cell research, but instead might wait for Congress to change the policy.  —  Obama pledged during the campaign …
Discussion: Commentary and Hot Air
Peter Beinart / Washington Post:
Admit It: The Surge Worked  —  It's no longer a close call: President Bush was right about the surge.  According to Michael O'Hanlon and Jason Campbell of the Brookings Institution, the number of Iraqi war dead was 500 in November of 2008, compared with 3,475 in November of 2006.
Blake Hounshell / FP Passport:
How not to close the Gaza tunnels  —  I see that mothership Slate has an article by William Saletan on “how to close the Gaza tunnels.”  (Back in December, FP ran a photo essay on the tunnels that is still definitely worth checking out.)  —  Unfortunately, Saletan's piece should have been called “How not to close the Gaza tunnels.”
Discussion: Matthew Yglesias
 
 
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 More Items: 
Jamison Foser / Media Matters for America:
Media Matters: Coverage of economy repeats Iraq mistakes
Discussion: Hullabaloo and The Sideshow
Andrew Jacobs / New York Times:
A County in China Sees Its Fortunes in Tea Leaves Until a Bubble Bursts
Discussion: The Peking Duck
Martin Hodgson / Guardian:
North Korea has plutonium ready for up to five nuclear bombs, reports claim
Discussion: Booman Tribune
Joe Nocera / New York Times:
In Search of One Bold Stroke to Save the Banks
Discussion: Angry Bear and Marginal Revolution
Ray Rivera / New York Times:
A Pilot Becomes a Hero Years in the Making
Paul Farhi / Washington Post:
Inaugural Panel Sells Exclusive TV Rights
Discussion: JammieWearingFool and On Deadline
 Earlier Items: 
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
BLOCK THE STIMULUS, HELP THE GOP.... Former Ohio Secretary …
Discussion: Newshoggers.com and The Seminal
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
By Request: Missing the Trees
Discussion: Eschaton
Sheryl Gay Stolberg / New York Times:
For a Power Lawyer, a New High-Wire Act
Discussion: TIME.com and TalkLeft
United States Senator John Cornyn, Texas:
Sen. Cornyn Urges Clinton Foundation To Adopt Stronger Foreign …
Fred Barnes / Weekly Standard:
The Only Thing We Have to Fear . . .