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7:40 AM ET, February 17, 2009

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Jennifer Steinhauer / New York Times:
California Struggles to Close a Projected $41 Billion Deficit  —  LOS ANGELES — The state of California — its deficits ballooning, its lawmakers intransigent and its governor apparently free of allies or influence — appears headed off the fiscal rails.  —  Since the fall …
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Los Angeles Times:
Legislature adjourns with no budget; governor prepares to lay off 10,000  —  In addition to shutting down public-works projects, Schwarzenegger administration moves toward massive state layoffs as legislators again fail to garner the final GOP vote needed to pass a budget.
Nichola Groom / Reuters:
With no budget, California to cut 20,000 state jobs
Discussion: Truthdig and Reuters
Stu Woo / Wall Street Journal:
California Vies to Close Budget Gap
Discussion: PoliGazette
Thomas M. Defrank / NY Daily News:
Cheney pushed Bush to grant Libby pardon  —  WASHINGTON - In the waning days of the Bush administration, Vice President Dick Cheney launched a last-ditch campaign to persuade his boss to pardon Lewis (Scooter) Libby - and was furious when President George W. Bush wouldn't budge.
Discussion: TalkLeft, Political Machine and marbury
Jackie Calmes / New York Times:
Obama Gains G.O.P. Support From Governors  —  WASHINGTON — President Obama must wish governors could vote in Congress: While just three of the 219 Republican lawmakers backed the $787 billion economic recovery plan that he is signing into law on Tuesday, that trifling total …
The Politico:
Obama takes econ campaign to Denver  —  President Barack Obama has a busy week of travel ahead of him, including more campaign-style stops to boost his recently passed economic stimulus package, the rollout of his long-awaited housing plans and a quick hop over the border to Canada for his first foreign trip.
Discussion: The Swamp
RELATED:
CNN:
Historians rate Lincoln best president, Bush 36th  —  (CNN) — It's been 145 years since Abraham Lincoln appeared on a ballot, but admiration for the man who saved the union and sparked the end of slavery is as strong as ever, according to a new survey.  —  Lincoln finished first in a ranking …
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Eric Posner / The Volokh Conspiracy:
Bush: Lincoln's heir?  Such is the surprising albeit unintended message …
Discussion: Moe Lane
Bradley Burston / Haaretz:
Sure the Israeli right won?  Peace lost?  Look closer  —  To judge solely from the gloating, the right conclusively won last week's election.  Hawkish politicians were swift to crow triumph.  Hardline analysts and legions of talkbackers have positively glowed in pronouncing the end of the left …
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Aron Heller / Associated Press:
Livni: Give up parts of ‘Land of Israel’
Discussion: Jihad Watch
Patrick Cockburn / The Independent:
A ‘fraud’ bigger than Madoff  —  Senior US soldiers investigated over missing Iraq reconstruction billions  —  In what could turn out to be the greatest fraud in US history, American authorities have started to investigate the alleged role of senior military officers in the misuse of $125bn …
Monica Davey / New York Times:
Revelations by Senator Are Raising Concerns  —  CHICAGO — Several Democratic lawmakers from Illinois said Monday that they were troubled by revelations about Roland W. Burris, the state's newest senator and a fellow Democrat.  And at least one called for Mr. Burris to come before the state legislature and explain himself.
Discussion: The Politico
Philip Sherwell / Telegraph:
Israel launches covert war against Iran  —  Israel has launched a covert war against Iran as an alternative to direct military strikes against Tehran's nuclear programme, US intelligence sources have revealed.  —  It is using hitmen, sabotage, front companies and double agents to disrupt …
Discussion: Israel Matzav, Israellycool and Hot Air
Razib / Gene Expression:
Right & wrong is not about religion  —  At least according to most Americans.  The full report of the Pew Religious Landscape Survey has some data not available on the website.  There is a question of the form: When it comes to questions of right and wrong, which of the following do you look to most for guidance?
RELATED:
Andrew Sullivan / The Daily Dish:
Evangelicalism vs Conservatism
Discussion: Liberal Values
Gale Holland / Los Angeles Times:
Student sues L.A. City College district over gay-marriage speech  —  Weeks after Proposition 8 passed, student says, his public-speaking professor reacted inappropriately to his stance against same-sex unions.  His lawyer alleges religious discrimination.  —  A classroom dispute …
Discussion: GayPatriot
The White House:
The story of the economic recovery package (photos)  —  As President Obama says, the economic recovery package is just one of three “legs of the stool” — a milestone, but an early one, the very beginning of the long process of fixing the economic crisis we inherited.
Discussion: The Politico and Political Punch
Phyllis Chesler / Writings from the Middle East Forum …:
Are Honor Killings Simply Domestic Violence?  —  Spring 2009, pp.  61-69 … When a husband murders a wife or daughter in the United States and Canada, too often law enforcement chalks the matter up to domestic violence.  Murder is murder; religion is irrelevant.
Eric Boehlert / Media Matters:
WSJ Op-Ed page plays dumb like it's nobody's business  —  Does any opinion outlet create, and then successfully demolish, more flimsy straw men than the diligent writers at the WSJ?  It's hard to imagine because it's almost if WSJ Op-ed editors require their conservatives opinionists construct lazy, intellectually dishonest arguments.
Discussion: The Impolitic and Dr. Helen
Michelle Malkin:
From the Boston Tea Party to your neighborhood pork protest  —  In Schmucky Schumer's world, these American taxpayers don't exist.  A big crowd of them gathered in Seattle this afternoon to raise their voices in opposition to the trillion-dollar, pork-filled Generational Theft Act of 2009 …
Dante Atkins / Calitics:
Some more math  —  If tax cuts always stimulate growth, then if we reduce the tax rate to zero, economic growth should swell to infinity.  Right?  —  Sure, it sounds ridiculous.  But with the Republicans dedicating themselves to their religion of anti-tax zealotry, it's about time to find …
Ezra Klein / American Prospect:
GEORGE WILL EMBRACES PALIN-ISM.  —  There needs to be some sort of Godwin's Law variant for conservatives who try to argue against global warming because they remember that Newsweek dipped into pop-science in the mid-70s and touted “global cooling.”  Call it Will's Law, after George Will …
RELATED:
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:   Cato's David Boaz Joins George Will in Peddling Bogus “Global Cooling” Stories
Associated Press:
Officials says Italy will not take Gitmo inmates … ROME (AP) - Italy will not accept any Guantanamo Bay detainees when the U.S. prison shuts down, a close ally of Premier Silvio Berlusconi said Monday after meeting with U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.  —  Gianfranco Fini …
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 More Items: 
gamecock's blog:
The cultural hijacking of Washington's Birthday
Discussion: Wonkette and Sadly, No!
Zenpundit / Chicago Boyz:
Carl von Clausewitz, On War, Book III: Calculation
Discussion: Likelihood of Success
Mike Soraghan / The Hill:
Pope Benedict to meet Pelosi
Discussion: RedState
Scott Shane / New York Times:
Justice Dept. to Critique Interrogation Methods Backed by Bush Team
Fredric U. Dicker / New York Post:
GOV'S HY-PAY-CRISY  —  STAFFERS GET SECRET RAISES AMID ‘FREEZE’
 Earlier Items: 
Washington Times:
Did blabbermouth Feinstein spill secrets?
Discussion: Power Line
John Bresnahan / The Politico:
DOJ removes Stevens' prosecutors
Discussion: TPMMuckraker
John Byrne / The Raw Story:
Exclusive: Lawyer says Rove won't take Fifth
Discussion: TalkLeft
Rasmussen Reports:
38% Say Stimulus Plan Will Help Economy