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9:25 AM ET, March 27, 2009

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
David Brooks / New York Times:
The Winnable War  —  I came to Afghanistan skeptical of American efforts to transform this country.  Afghanistan is one of the poorest, least-educated and most-corrupt nations on earth.  It is an infinitely complex and fractured society.  It has powerful enemies in Pakistan, Iran and the drug networks working hard to foment chaos.
RELATED:
Reuters:
Blundering Afghan suicide bomber blows up 6 militants  —  A would-be suicide bomber accidentally blew himself up on Thursday, killing six other militants as he was bidding them farewell to leave for his intended target, the Interior Ministry said.  —  “The terrorist was on his way to his destination …
Carlotta Gall / New York Times:
Pakistani and Afghan Taliban Unify in Face of U.S. Influx  —  ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — After agreeing to bury their differences and unite forces, Taliban leaders based in Pakistan have closed ranks with their Afghan comrades to ready a new offensive in Afghanistan as the United States prepares to send 17,000 more troops there this year.
Karen DeYoung / Washington Post:
Obama Plans More Funding For Afghan War  —  President Obama's new Afghanistan-Pakistan strategy will require significantly higher levels of U.S. funding for both countries, with U.S. military expenses in Afghanistan alone, currently about $2 billion a month, increasing by about 60 percent this year.
New York Times:
In New Afghan Strategy, Obama Will Add Troops
Associated Press:
Sources: Obama plans to send more troops to Afghanistan
Ezra Klein / American Prospect:
MY FAVORITE BUDGET EVER.  —  If you're having a bad day, I highly encourage you to spend some quality time with the Republican budget proposal.  It's reads like what would happen if The Onion put together a budget.  “Area Man Releases Proposal for 2010 Federal Spending Priorities.”
RELATED:
John Cole / Balloon Juice:
A Quick Explanation for the GOP Seppuku Today
Discussion: The Swamp and Whiskey Fire
Glenn Thrush / The Politico:
Bad blood: GOP infighting on budget
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
The Market Mystique  —  On Monday, Lawrence Summers, the head of the National Economic Council, responded to criticisms of the Obama administration's plan to subsidize private purchases of toxic assets.  “I don't know of any economist,” he declared, “who doesn't believe that better functioning capital markets …
New York Times:
As New Lawyer, Senator Defended Big Tobacco  —  The Philip Morris Company did not like to talk about what went on inside its lab in Cologne, Germany, where researchers secretly conducted experiments exploring the effects of cigarette smoking.  —  So when the Justice Department tried …
Minneapolis Star Tribune:
Exec says Coleman donor ordered $100K payments  —  Sworn statement backs allegation that Kazeminy directed fees to an insurance firm to benefit the Colemans.  —  The former finance chief of a Texas company controlled by Nasser Kazeminy, a close friend of former Sen. Norm Coleman …
Discussion: TIME.com
Thomas Joscelyn / Weekly Standard:
Welfare for Freed Gitmo Detainees?  —  Here, from the Associated Press, is a partial account of DNI Dennis Blair's first press conference today (emphasis mine): … Four short questions/comments:  —  (1) Does this mean that the Obama administration is planning on giving some freed Guantanamo detainees a stipend?
Discussion: JammieWearingFool
RELATED:
Pam Hess / Associated Press:
Official: Mexico not in danger of collapse
Discussion: Pat Dollard and Don Surber
Peter Nicholas / Los Angeles Times:
Campaign for Obama's budget is widening  —  His allies' ads target districts led by conservative Democrats — some of whom question the wisdom of the strategy, suggesting that it's divisive.  —  Reporting from Washington — A campaign to persuade Republicans to support President Obama's budget …
Discussion: CapitalBeat
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Josh Gerstein / The Politico:
W.H. preserves secrecy option  —  I think I have a better idea now why the White House was so sensitive about my story Monday questioning the legality and wisdom of secret meetings held by subcommittees of President Obama's economic advisory panel.  —  It was because officials planned …
Discussion: HotMES
Ben Smith / The Politico:
Pentagon: ‘War on terror’ not banned  —  Pentagon spokesman Geoff Morrell calls to make clear that nobody has banned the phrase “Global War on Terror.”  —  “I have used and continue to use that term, as do many here in the building.  But there are alternatives that are just as fitting,” he said.
RELATED:
Alan Greenspan / Financial Times:
We need a better cushion against risk  —  The extraordinary risk-management discipline that developed out of the writings of the University of Chicago's Harry Markowitz in the 1950s produced insights that won several Nobel prizes in economics.  It was widely embraced not only by academia …
Jonathan Wheatley / Financial Times:
Brazil's leader blames white people for crisis  —  Brazil's President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva on Thursday blamed the global economic crisis on “white people with blue eyes” and said it was wrong that black and indigenous people should pay for white people's mistakes.
Peter Hamby / CNN:
Palin's prayer remark angers former staffers  —  WASHINGTON (CNN) - Some of Sarah Palin's former campaign aides are frustrated with the Alaska governor for remarking in a lengthy, freewheeling speech that she had refused to pray with them before last October's vice presidential debate.
Mary Williams Walsh / New York Times:
Inquiry Asks Why A.I.G. Paid Banks  —  Members of Congress and the New York State attorney general demanded detailed information Thursday on how tens of billions of taxpayer dollars flowed through the American International Group during its crisis last fall and ended up in the coffers …
Lymari Morales / Gallup:
Amid Budget Battle, Americans' Views Hold Steady  —  Views are more positive than negative but diverge according to party lines  —  WASHINGTON, D.C. — While lawmakers on Capitol Hill battle back and forth over President Barack Obama's proposed budget plan, Americans' views are holding steady.
Discussion: Commentary, The Plum Line and The Swamp
Rod Liddle / Times of London:
British Army chief ready to send 2,000 more troops to Afghanistan  —  The head of the Army is ready to send up to 2,000 extra troops to Afghanistan amid fears that the US-led mission will struggle without significant reinforcements.  —  General Sir Richard Dannatt told The Times yesterday …
Discussion: Guardian and Jules Crittenden
Simon Johnson / The Atlantic Online:
The Quiet Coup  —  ONE THING YOU learn rather quickly when working at the International Monetary Fund is that no one is ever very happy to see you.  Typically, your “clients” come in only after private capital has abandoned them, after regional trading-bloc partners have been unable to throw …
Johnny Dollar / Olbermann Watch:
Howard Dean Says Don't Call a Sitting President ‘Fascist’—As He's Talking to Olbermann?!?  —  Did Dr Dean know whom he was talking to?  We did, and this will serve as a little reminder to the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann that even his own guests think he is a sleazy creep:
 
 
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 More Items: 
Alexander Mooney / CNN:
Obama: Marijuana is not a good strategy to spur economy
Discussion: Donklephant
Cathy Young / Weekly Standard:
Reveling in the Financial Crisis
Tom Topousis / New York Post:
PORT AUTHORITY DOING AWAY WITH FREEDOM TOWER NAME
Discussion: The Mahablog
Jonathan Berr / Daily Finance:
Tim Geithner is less popular than Jell-o on Facebook
Discussion: Clusterstock
Hans A. von Spakovsky / The Corner:
What Non-political Looks Like  —  Democrats complained endlessly …
Discussion: Power Line
Phil Singer / The Marathon Blog:
Is Santorum Backing Specter?
Discussion: Philly.com and TPMDC
Christopher Buckley / Blogs and Stories:
The Audacity of Poping  —  D.C. Mystery: Who Did Nancy Pelosi's …
 Earlier Items: 
Ben Smith / The Politico:
VIDEO: Obama's first endorsement ad
Ian Donnis / WRNI:
Chafee on the verge
Discussion: Swing State Project
Albany Times Union:
Libertarian removed from ballot
Discussion: The Moderate Voice and TPMDC
Matthew Vadum / NewsBusters.org:
Podesta Plant at White House Presser — Brace Yourself for MSM Non-Outrage
Eric Zimmermann / The Hill's Blog Briefing Room:
Bachmann bill would ban global currency