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3:30 PM ET, March 18, 2009


 Top Items: 
Maureen Dowd / New York Times:
No Boiled Carrots  —  Barack Obama even needs a teleprompter to get mad.  —  On St. Patrick's Day, the president spoke a bit of Gaelic, dyed the White House fountains green and talked about his distant relatives in the tiny Irish town of Moneygall, aptly named since money and gall are the two topics now consuming him.
Discussion: CNN, and Whiskey Fire
Ian Swanson / The Hill:
AIG staff: We deserve this money  —  AIG's new management team last year proposed that its employees give up their “retention” bonuses, or at least reduce them.  The response from the 370 or so employees set to rake in $450 million in bonuses through 2010?  —  Take a hike.
Edward M. Liddy / Washington Post:
Repairing AIG and Repaying the Public  —  The government rescue of American International Group (AIG) and other financial firms has produced a palpable wave of anger on the part of Americans and a rising public demand for accountability from corporate and government leaders.
New York Times:
A.I.G. Chief Expected to Offer Bonus Compromise  —  Edward M. Liddy, the embattled chief of American International Group, is expected to ask employees who received lucrative bonuses to give half the money back.  —  According to a person briefed on Mr. Liddy's plans, the A.I.G. chief …
Steven Pearlstein / Washington Post:
Wall Street's Dangerous Refusal to Learn  —  You have to wonder what else has to go wrong, how much more wealth will need to be destroyed, before the people on Wall Street get the message that it's no longer business as usual.  —  The latest outrage, of course, is over the $400 million …
Jonathan Karl / ABCNEWS:
Will Obama, McCain, Dodd Return Contributions From AIG Employees?
Matt Lira / Office of the Republican Whip:
House Democrats Vote to Let AIG Keep Bonuses
Discussion: RedState
Tim / Sky News:
The Obama 100  —  Earlier in the day, the president claimed an Irish ancestry, saying his mother's family could be traced back to Ireland.  —  He joked to Cowen: “We may be cousins.  We haven't sorted that through yet.”  —  Speaking in the Oval Office, he told the Irish premier …
David Espo / Associated Press:
Analysis: White House, Dems backpedaling on AIG
Discussion: Power Line, The Politico and The Corner
Wall Street Journal:
Financial Journalists Fail Upward  —  “Listen, you knew what the banks were doing and yet were touting it for months and months,” said “Daily Show” host Jon Stewart to CNBC superstar Jim Cramer in their much-discussed confrontation last week.  “The entire network was, and so now to pretend …
Discussion: At-Largely and
David Kaplan /
@ McGraw-Hill: NBCU's Zucker Calls Out Jon Stewart: Blaming CNBC Is ‘Absurd’  —  NBC Universal (NYSE: GE) CEO Jeff Zucker, in a Q&A with Ellen Pollock, executive editor, BusinessWeek, opened the *McGraw-Hill* Media Summit by taking on Comedy Central's Jon Stewart, who on the Daily Show …
Jon Friedman / MarketWatch:
CNBC's woes may open the door to its competitors
Discussion: Blogs and Stories and Clusterstock
Andy Katz / ESPN:
Presidential pick 'em at the White House  — takes an exclusive look at President Obama's bracket  —  WASHINGTON, D.C. — President Barack Obama has studied Lincoln and FDR to help guide him through the early stages of his presidency.  —  But he is very much a modern man …
The White House:
March Madness at the White House
Discussion: Indecision Forever and MSNBC
Lori Montgomery / Washington Post:
President's Budget Strategy Under Fire  —  Tactic May Break Obama's Bipartisan Pledge, GOP Says  —  Senior members of the Obama administration are pressing lawmakers to use a shortcut to drive the president's signature initiatives on health care and energy through Congress without Republican votes …
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
LOWERING THE BAR FOR MOB RULE.... About two weeks ago …
Discussion: Matthew Yglesias
Jonathan Cohn / The New Republic:
Gregg: I Was For Reconciliation Before I Was Against It
Discussion: Matthew Yglesias and Brian Beutler
Marc Ambinder / The Atlantic Politics Channel:
The Gloves Come Off  —  White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel just had to scratch that itch.  Speaking for the President and to the New York Times yesterday, he called the contretemps over the AIG news a “distraction” from the “main priority of getting the financial system stabilized.”
Discussion: Washington Monthly
Greg Sargent / The Plum Line:
In Bid To Grab Control Of Story, Obama Takes Responsibility For AIG Mess
Discussion: Think Progress and Salon
Harold Meyerson / Washington Post:
The Nationalization Option  —  You might think that having anted up $173 billion of our own money, we taxpayers would have some leverage at AIG, now that we own 80 percent of the shares.  You might think that when chief executive Edward Liddy, a holdover appointee of Hank Paulson's …
Discussion: Open Left
Glenn Thrush / Glenn Thrush's Blog:
Mack calls Geithner “disaster,” demands resignation
Discussion: Reuters, Weekly Standard and
Caitlin Taylor / The Note:
GOP Rep. Calls for Geithner's Ouster
Discussion: Time, Bloomberg and Swampland
Matt Corley / Think Progress:
The Husband Of Fox News' Greta Van Susteren Is A ‘Protector Of The Palin Brand’  —  During the presidential campaign, Fox News's Greta Van Susteren had perhaps the best access to Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin of any journalist.  In September, she hosted a one-hour “documentary” …
Jonathan Cohn / The New Republic:
Stayin' Alive  —  The inside story of health care reform's near-death experience.  —  In early January, most of Barack Obama's senior staff assembled with the president-elect for a meeting inside a windowless, eighth-floor office at the transition headquarters in Washington.
Ryan Powers / Think Progress:
Bayh refuses to name anonymous members of his new Blue-Dog style coalition.  —  This morning on MSNBC's Morning Joe, Sen. Evan Bayh (D-IN) officially announced the creation of his new Blue-Dog style coalition of approximately 15 “moderate” Democratic senators.
Discussion: Washington Monthly
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
Some Members of Evan Bayh's New Anti-Progressive Caucus Too Frightened …
Discussion: Wake up America and Brian Beutler
Ben Katcher / The Washington Note:
Guest Post by Lawrence Wilkerson: Some Truths About Guantanamo Bay  —  Lawrence B. Wilkerson was chief of staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell and is chairman of the New America Foundation/U.S.-Cuba 21st Century Policy Initiative.  —  There are several dimensions to the debate …
Tom Gross Mideast Media Analysis:
Exclusive: This is CNN (& BBC-UNRWA connection revealed)  —  * CNN Jerusalem producer's shocking public outburst against Israel (see video below)  —  * Revealed: UNRWA spokesman who lied about Israel's shelling of a school previously worked at the BBC with Jeremy Bowen
Rob Gillies / Associated Press:
Bush says it's ‘essential’ to help Obama  —  CALGARY, Alberta - Former President George W. Bush, making his first public speech since leaving office in January, says he wants Barack Obama to succeed and that it's “essential” to support the new leader.  —  Bush declined to critique …
Alex Conant / The Politico:
The 5 biggest myths about Obama  —  By trade if not by choice, I have become something of a Barack Obama aficionado.  POLITICO's Mike Allen wrote last week that I have “probably listened to more President Obama speeches than any human besides [White House spokesman Robert] Gibbs.”
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 More Items: 
Jeff Jarvis / BuzzMachine:
Not my fault  —  “Criticism of CNBC is way out of line,” …
Discussion: Wilshire & Washington
Noemie Emery /
Palinphobes and the audacity of type
Discussion: Eunomia
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
A Center-Right Nation Forever
Discussion: TalkLeft and Outside The Beltway
Tom Maguire / JustOneMinute:
Who Broke AIG?  —  Last weekend AIG released information …
Discussion: ABCNEWS
Ryan Powers / Think Progress:
Hagel rips Cheney's claim that Obama is making the U.S. less safe …
Discussion: MoJo Blog Posts
 Earlier Items: 
Julian E. Zelizer / CNN:
Zelizer: GOP's ‘small government’ talk is hollow
David Kurtz / Talking Points Memo:
YOU KNOW IT'S BAD WHEN ...  Insurance companies say they have no choice …
Discussion: First Draft
Mark Coleman / Telegraph:
YouTube ‘spammed by US Congressmen’
Discussion: Pajamas Media
Bsetser / Brad Setser:
A bit more to worry about; foreign demand for long-term Treasuries has faded
Alec MacGillis / Washington Post:
Union Engages in Labor Dispute With Its Own Employees