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5:00 PM ET, March 16, 2009

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Helene Cooper / New York Times:
Obama Orders Treasury Chief to Try to Block A.I.G. Bonuses  —  WASHINGTON — President Obama vowed to try to stop the faltering insurance giant American International Group from paying out hundreds of millions of dollars in bonuses to executives, as the administration scrambled to avert …
RELATED:
Jane Hamsher / Firedoglake:
Who Stole Our Country, and How are We Going to Get It Back?  —  The White House is worried about backlash over AIG's payout of $450 million in bonuses to the executives in its high flying Financial Services Group, the out-of-control derivatives trading arm that looted the company …
William Kristol / PostPartisan:
AIG Bonus Babies
Discussion: Hot Air, MoJo Blog Posts and Sadly, No!
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
AIG SUCCEEDS IN BRINGING PEOPLE TOGETHER.... Rep. Barney Frank …
The Politico:
Obama: Block AIG bonuses
Discussion: The Swamp, The Caucus and Reuters
Satyam Khanna / Think Progress:
Frank on AIG: 'Maybe it's time to fire some people.'
Discussion: Reuters
CBS News:
White House May Want AIG Money Back
Emptywheel:
The Semtex in the AIG Retention Contracts
Discussion: Hullabaloo
Pew Research Center:
Obama's Approval Rating Slips Amid Division Over Economic Proposals  —  GOP Congressional Leaders' Ratings Hit New Low - 28%  —  President Barack Obama's approval rating has slipped, as a growing number of Americans see him listening more to his party's liberals than to its moderates …
RELATED:
Paul Steinhauser / CNN:
Obama rating high, but poll finds worries on economy
Discussion: Hot Air
Think Progress:
Fox News Edits Clip To Suggest That Biden Recently Declared ‘Fundamentals Of The Economy Are Strong’  —  This afternoon, Fox News's Martha MacCallum introduced a segment highlighting Council of Economic Advisers Chairman Christina Romer's claim yesterday that the “fundamentals of the economy are sound.”
RELATED:
Anne Schroeder Mullins / The Politico:
Gridiron singed by Obama no-show  —  No offense intended, says the Obama White House.  —  None taken, say the esteemed leaders of the Gridiron Club.  —  Still, in Washington, a slap does not have to be officially labeled as such for its sound to echo — and its sting to be felt.
RELATED:
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:   AN ESTABLISHMENT WITH A FRAGILE EGO.... President Obama …
Shelby Steele / Wall Street Journal:
Why the GOP Can't Win With Minorities  —  Today conservatism is stigmatized in our culture as an antiminority political philosophy.  In certain quarters, conservatism is simply racism by another name.  And minorities who openly identify themselves as conservatives are still novelties, fish out of water.
Eric Kleefeld / TPMDC:
Rendell: I've Tried To Get Specter To Switch — And So Has Joe Biden  —  Ed Rendell told RNN-TV, a regional cable news channel in the Northeast, that he has in fact tried to talk GOP Senator Arlen Specter into switching to the Democrats — oh, and so have some other important people, who Rendell probably shouldn't have mentioned.
RELATED:
Helene Cooper / The Caucus:
Obama to Appear on ‘Tonight Show’  —  Barack Obama appeared on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” in 2007 when he was running for president.  —  President Obama will be making a guest appearance on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” on Thursday, a White House official said …
Gary Langer / ABCNEWS:
Dramatic Advances Sweep Iraq, Boosting Support for Democracy  —  ABC News/BBC/NHK National Survey of Iraq  —  Dramatic advances in public attitudes are sweeping Iraq, with declining violence, rising economic well-being and improved services lifting optimism, fueling confidence in public institutions …
Megan McArdle / The Atlantic Business Channel:
What's the matter with Jim Cramer?  —  I've seen a number of people making some variant of the claim that Jon Stewart is the only one brave enough to stand up to the financial journalists who helped get us into this mess.  —  This is purest poppycock.  Jim Cramer had no influence …
Discussion: Clusterstock and Brian Beutler
The Raw Story:
Fox calls CNN ‘Communist News Network,’ then messes up  —  In the war between Fox News and the facts, the facts are always handicapped.  —  On Fox & Friends Monday, host Steve Doocy took time to note that a former CNN employee, Mauricio Funes, has been elected President of El Salvador.
Discussion: The Reaction and News Hounds
The Huffington Post:
Steele's Tour-De-Force: Compares Obama To Nixon, Declares “Ultimate Political Armageddon,” Backs Challenges Against Republicans  —  Read More: Michael Steele, Radio Host, Steele Amragedon, Steele Bill Bennett, Steele Global Warming, Steele Greenland, Steele Nixon, Steele Obama Nixon.
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
A Continent Adrift  —  I'm concerned about Europe.  Actually, I'm concerned about the whole world — there are no safe havens from the global economic storm.  But the situation in Europe worries me even more than the situation in America.  —  Just to be clear, I'm not about to rehash …
Washington Post:
An Immigration Glitch for Gay Couples Is Unjust  —  THE UNITING American Families Act would allow gay and lesbian Americans and permanent residents to sponsor their foreign-born partners for legal residency in the United States.  The bill, introduced last month in the Senate by Patrick Leahy …
Seattle Post-Intelligencer:
Seattle P-I to publish last edition Tuesday  —  The Seattle Post-Intelligencer will roll off the presses for the last time Tuesday.  —  The Hearst Corp. announced Monday that it would stop publishing the 146-year old newspaper, Seattle's oldest business, and cease delivery to more than 117,600 weekday readers.
Discussion: Boing Boing
Nathan Hodge / Danger Room:
U.S. Military Confirms It Shot Down Iranian Drone  —  Last month, a U.S. fighter aircraft tracked and shot down an Iranian drone.  Details — first reported by Danger Room — have been elusive, but the U.S. military has now confirmed the incident.  —  Multinational Forces Iraq spokesman …
Discussion: Newshoggers.com
Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo:
OUR FINAL OFFER IS THIS: NOTHING  —  Whatever else you can say about AIG CEO Edward Libby, he ain't much for irony.  In his letter to Secretary Geithner he said that AIG “cannot attract and retain the best and brightest talent ... if employees believe that their compensation is subject …
Discussion: Democrats.com
Stacy Schiff / New York Magazine:
Sexual Politics  —  How long has it been since a First Couple seemed to want each other?  —  Look, Ma, no hands!  Only one cool forehead and some extra-strength hairspray touch, and yet everything combusts in this Inauguration Night photo.  Not since Doris Day and Rock Hudson split a pair of pajamas …
Raleigh News & Observer:
Burr picks Obama for courtside, not dinner  —  U.S. Sen. Richard Burr wouldn't mind watching basketball with Barack Obama.  —  The Winston-Salem Republican was recently on the Charlotte sports talk show “Primetime with the Packman.”  Repeating a question from the Democratic primary last year …
Discussion: Pam's House Blend
Andrew Sullivan / The Daily Dish:
Compare And Contrast  —  From the Red Cross's summary of Bush-Cheney torture techniques: … The Gestapo's list of torture techniques that fit into their “enhanced interrogation program” - a torture regime designed to avoid too-obvious or incriminating physical scars:
Discussion: Human Rights Now
 
 
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 More Items: 
Tyler Cowen / Marginal Revolution:
Do influential people develop more conventional opinions?
Michael A. Lindenberger / Time:
A Gay-Marriage Solution: End Marriage?
Discussion: The Daily Dish
Philip Weiss / The American Conservative:
Freeman's Fight PDF
Discussion: Weekly Standard and Commentary
Howard Kurtz / Washington Post:
As Markets Fell, Pundits Came Down On Obama
Discussion: Think Progress
Rabbi David Wolpe / The Huffington Post:
Clashing Over Iran and the Jews
Discussion: Israel Matzav and Jeffrey Goldberg
Andrew Sullivan / The Daily Dish:
3 Percent  —  Ta-Nehisi links to the latest numbers on HIV in DC.
Carol D. Leonnig / Washington Post:
Documents: Penn.  Center Funneled Federal Funding to Rep. Murtha's Supporters
Discussion: Political Machine
 Earlier Items: 
Kevin Sack / New York Times:
Massachusetts Faces Costs of Big Health Care Plan
Discussion: The Corner and MNpublius.com
Bill Steigerwald / PittsburghLIVE.com:
My last words ...  TRIBUNE-REVIEW  —  No one sane ever went …
Discussion: Pajamas Media
Meir Javedanfar / RealClearWorld - Blog:
Why Khatami Withdrew
Discussion: BBC, CNN, Israel Matzav and Newshoggers.com
Patricia Sellers / Fortune:
Can Meg Whitman save California?
Discussion: The Caucus and TIME.com
Richard Kerbaj / Times of London:
Thousands of girls mutilated in Britain
Discussion: Jihad Watch