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11:30 AM ET, March 19, 2009

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Washington Post:
How the Fed Failed to Tell Obama About The Bonuses  —  Federal Reserve officials knew for months about bonuses at American International Group but failed to tell the Obama administration, according to government and company officials, exposing problems in a relationship that is vital to addressing the financial crisis.
RELATED:
Stephen Ohlemacher / Associated Press:
House to vote on 90 percent tax for AIG bonuses  —  Featured Topics: - Barack Obama - Presidential Transition  —  WASHINGTON - The House is scheduled to vote today on a bill that would levy a 90 percent tax on bonuses paid to employees with family incomes above $250,000 at companies …
Manu Raju / The Politico:
GOP wary of plan to tax AIG bonuses  —  A plan to recoup millions of dollars of American International Group bonuses by taxing them into oblivion has put top Republicans on opposite sides of a riddle: When is a tax hike not a tax hike?  —  House Minority Leader John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) …
DealBook:
Dissecting the A.I.G. Bonus Contract  —  Washington is filled with outrage over the $165 million in bonuses given out by the American International Group.  Yet, as I said in my post on Tuesday, “Seven Sad Truths About A.I.G.,” the real concern over the insurance giant should be about the $170 billion …
Tom Maguire / JustOneMinute:
But Who Controls The Teleprompter?
Jackie Calmes / New York Times:
A.I.G. Uproar Is a Defining Moment for Geithner
Massimo Calabresi / Time:
Treasury Learned of AIG Bonuses Earlier Than Claimed
Josh Kraushaar / The Politico:
GOP hopes bonuses are election issue
Discussion: TIME.com
Fox News:
Duke Coach to Obama: Worry About the Economy, Not NCAA Picks  —  Reacting to news Obama picked North Carolina to win the NCAA Championship, Mike Krzyzewski says, “the economy is something that [the president] should focus on, probably more than the brackets.”
RELATED:
Nate Silver / FiveThirtyEight:
Cherry-Picker-in-Chief  —  FiveThirtyEight Exclusive: Obama NCAA Bracket Suggests Bias Toward Schools from Swing States  —  Is President Obama playing favorites with his NCAA bracket?  Neither Columbia University nor the University of Chicago have an entry in the Big Dance (the Maroons, alas, aren't even in D-1).
Peter Hamby / CNN:
Coach K disses Obama's basketball picks  —  WASHINGTON (CNN) - Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski isn't thrilled his team got snubbed by the leader of the free world.  —  “Somebody said that we're not in President Obama's Final Four, and as much as I respect what he's doing, really …
Discussion: Weekly Standard
Washington Times:
EXCLUSIVE: Obama's $500,000 book bonanza  —  Deal reached 5 days before he took office  —  As he empathized with recession-weary Americans, President Obama arranged in the days just before he took office to secure a $500,000 advance for a children's book project, a disclosure report shows.
RELATED:
Hillel Italie / Associated Press:
George W. Bush to write memoir about ‘decisions’
Motoko Rich / The Caucus:
‘The Decider’ to Become ‘The Author’
Discussion: TIME.com and The Politico
Eddie / Sky News:
Julia Alasheyeva, Moscow  —  A picture has emerged apparently showing Russia's Prime Minister Vladimir Putin in his former days as a KGB officer.  —  The 20-year old photo depicts two world leaders - US President Ronald Reagan and the Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev - in Moscow.
Washington Post:
Our Must-Win War  —  The ‘Minimalist’ Path Is Wrong for Afghanistan  —  Later this month, the Obama administration will unveil a new strategy for the war in Afghanistan.  This comes as most important indicators in Afghanistan are pointing in the wrong direction.
Charles Babington / Associated Press:
Schwarzenegger to help Obama answer GOP critics  —  Featured Topics: - Barack Obama - Presidential Transition  —  LOS ANGELES - President Barack Obama is playing a bit of divide and conquer this week, pitting his Republican critics in Washington against GOP governors and mayors eager …
RELATED:
Andrew Malcolm / Top of the Ticket:
Coming to a stage near you, the well-oiled Obama Road Show
Discussion: Hot Air and The Moderate Voice
Dschabner / Political Punch:
President Obama Compares Big Banks, AIG, to Suicide Bombers  —  At his town hall meeting in Costa Mesa, Calif., Wednesday evening, President Obama compared embattled insurer AIG and other large failing banks to a suicide bomber.  —  “A lot of people say, ‘Well, why not just let the banks fail?’” the president said.
Discussion: Don Surber
RELATED:
Erik Schatzker / Bloomberg:
Citigroup Said to Commit $10 Million for New Executive Suite  —  Citigroup Inc. plans to spend about $10 million on new offices for Chief Executive Officer Vikram Pandit and his lieutenants, after the U.S. government injected $45 billion of cash into the bank.
Laura Rozen / The Cable:
Top brass disturbed by GOP stalling of Iraq ambassador  —  There's one as yet unremarked constituency increasingly disturbed by some Republican senators' efforts to block the confirmation of former North Korea envoy Christopher Hill to be the next U.S. ambassador to Iraq: the U.S. military.
David Adam / Guardian:
Leading climate scientist: 'democratic process isn't working'  —  Protest and direct action could be the only way to tackle soaring carbon emissions, a leading climate scientist has said.  —  James Hansen, a climate modeller with Nasa, told the Guardian today that corporate lobbying …
Evan Perez / Wall Street Journal:
Detainees May Be Released in U.S.  —  WASHINGTON — Attorney General Eric Holder said some detainees being held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, may end up being released in the U.S. as the Obama administration works with foreign allies to resettle some of the prisoners.
Yves Smith / naked capitalism:
On the Fed's “Shock and Awe”  —  When some deemed the Fed's move today to expand its balance sheet by as much as a trillion dollars plus as “shock and awe”, I recalled that when that term was first used, at the beginning of the US invasion of Iraq.  The notion was a display of superior force would lead to quick capitulation.
RELATED:
Phil Izzo / Real Time Economics:
Economists React: ‘Huge Step Forward’
Discussion: Blog entry
Reihan Salam / The Atlantic Politics Channel:
Rethinking The JournoList List  —  A friend emailed to ask me for my thoughts on the “JournoList,” a question prompted by Michael Calderone's short but suggestive report in yesterday's Politico.  Calderone's piece is for the most part a lament about the secrecy maintained by the members of the list …
Susan Evans / The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA:
Murtha defends statement  —  The region's outspoken congressman is in the national lens again - this time CBS News television cameras - in a report Wednesday that calls him “the king of earmarks who wastes a lot of taxpayer money” and implies that the FBI is investigating.
Discussion: RedState and Pajamas Media
Washington Post:
What to Do About AIG?  —  Chief executive of AIG from 1967 to 2005  —  CEO Edward Liddy believes that dismantling AIG, once the world's largest and most successful insurance company, is the only way to repay the taxpayer money it has received.  But AIG's history demonstrates that its businesses …
Discussion: Commentary
Zachary A. Goldfarb / Washington Post:
Fannie Plans Retention Bonuses As Outlined by the Government  —  Fannie Mae, the federally run mortgage finance giant, plans to pay four top executives $1 million or more in retention bonuses.  —  The bonus plan prompted the company's federal regulator to defend compensation decisions …
 
 
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 More Items: 
Nicholas Confessore / New York Times:
Taxes Not Seen as Making the Rich Flee New York
Andrew Blankstein / Los Angeles Times:
Photo of Charles Manson is released by prison officials
Discussion: LA Observed
Stephen Gordon / The Liberty Papers:
Eminent Domain, Alabama Style
Louise Story / New York Times:
Cuomo Wins Ruling to Name Merrill Bonus Recipients
Discussion: TPMMuckraker and The BLT
Robert Farley / American Prospect:
AND EVEN DUMBER: THE IMPERIAL DEFENSE BUDGET.
 Earlier Items: 
Reid Wilson / The Hill:
RNC to report $5.1M in February fundraising
Discussion: MSNBC
The Hill:
Specter crosses aisle despite election risks
Nicholas D. Kristof / New York Times:
The Daily Me  —  Some of the obituaries these days …
Robert S. McElvaine / Washington Post:
Impeach the Pope  —  Professor of Arts & Letters, Millsaps College
Discussion: NewsBusters.org and culturekitchen
Noah Shachtman / Danger Room:
Military Laser Hits Battlefield Strength