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8:05 PM ET, April 13, 2009

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Sheryl Gay Stolberg / New York Times:
White House Announces Easing of Cuba Restrictions  —  WASHINGTON — The White House announced on Monday that it is abandoning longstanding restrictions on family travel, remittances and gifts to Cuba, and is also taking steps to open up telecommunications with the island …
RELATED:
Felix Gillette / New York Observer:
MSNBC Developing a Weekend Politics Show for NBC News Chief White House Correspondent Chuck Todd  —  Get ready for more of the “Goateed Guru.”  —  According to multiple network sources, MSNBC is in the process of developing a weekend political show to be moderated by Chuck Todd …
Caitlin Taylor / Political Punch:
President Obama to Lift Restrictions on Cuba
Discussion: Washington Monthly and Salon
Johanna Neuman / Top of the Ticket:
Michelle Obama promotes physical activity at White House Easter Egg Roll
Discussion: Political Machine
MiamiHerald.com:
Some travel restrictions to Cuba to be lifted
Discussion: MSNBC, TPMCafe and CBS News
John Amato / Crooks and Liars:
Bonfire of the Wingnutteries: Howard Kurtz attacks Fox's slobbering promotion of the Tax Day Tea Parties  —  Howard Kurtz hit FOX News for their promotion of the “Tea Party” protests on CNN's Reliable Sources.  He actually says the shows are now “a full-fledged Fox fight.”  —  Transcript:
Discussion: CNN
RELATED:
The Huffington Post:
Fox's Cavuto Claims Network Covered Protests Before Network Was Founded  —  Fox News' Neil Cavuto has gone on the defensive lately, defending his network's coverage of the coming political fringe tax day Renaissance Faires known as Tea Parties.  Naturally, no one in the wide world …
Jane Hamsher / Firedoglake:
Corporate Lobbyists Raising Money For Tea Parties
Discussion: Jack & Jill Politics
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
Tea Parties Forever  —  This is a column about Republicans — and I'm not sure I should even be writing it.  —  Today's G.O.P. is, after all, very much a minority party.  It retains some limited ability to obstruct the Democrats, but has no ability to make or even significantly shape policy.
RELATED:
Meghan McCain / Blogs and Stories:
Memo to the GOP: Go Gay  —  Blogs and Stories  —  Republican resistance to gay marriage goes against conservative values—and our own self-interest.  —  This week, I will be speaking at the Log Cabin Republicans' national convention in support of the gay community and its role in the future of the Republican Party.
The Daily Beast:
A Gayer GOP  —  Blogs and Stories  —  Meghan McCain …
Discussion: The BRAD BLOG and Riehl World View
Adam Liptak / New York Times:
A Reticent Justice Opens Up to a Group of Students  —  Justice Clarence Thomas has not asked a question from the Supreme Court bench since Feb. 22, 2006.  He speaks only to announce his majority opinions, reading summaries in a gruff monotone.  Glimpses of Justice Thomas in less formal settings are rare.
Jeffrey M. Jones / Gallup:
Views of Income Taxes Among Most Positive Since 1956  —  PRINCETON, NJ — A new Gallup Poll finds 48% of Americans saying the amount of federal income taxes they pay is “about right,” with 46% saying “too high” — one of the most positive assessments Gallup has measured since 1956.
RELATED:
Ari Fleischer / Wall Street Journal:
Everyone Should Pay Income Taxes  —  It's bad for our democracy to exempt half the country.  —  If you thought Bernard Madoff's Ponzi scheme was bad, wait until you hear about the inverted pyramid scheme the federal government is working on.  While Mr. Madoff preyed on people who trusted …
David Neiwert / Crooks and Liars:
Right-wingers who hit ‘President Pantywaist’ have egg on their faces after U.S. forces killed pirates  —  You can view this video right here by getting the latest version of Flash Player!  —  DOWNLOAD  —  PLAY  —  Before yesterday's remarkable success story on the high seas off the coast of Somalia …
RELATED:
New York Times:
Obama Signals More Active Response to Piracy Threat
Adam Serwer / American Prospect:
PRESIDENTIAL AUTHORITY AND THE RESCUE OF CAPTAIN PHILLIPS.  —  After foolishly setting up the hostage situation with Somali pirates as a test of Obama's mettle, the right has been really desperate to convince themselves that President Obama could not possibly have authorized the use of force …
Discussion: BLACKFIVE
RELATED:
Michael D. Shear / Washington Post:
An Early Military Victory for Obama
Helen Kennedy / NY Daily News:
President Obama vows to battle Somali pirates
Discussion: Pajamas Media
Max Blumenthal / Blogs and Stories:
Palin's New Disaster  —  Blogs and Stories  —  The governor is reeling after nominating for attorney general a man who allegedly defended the right of men to rape their wives.  Now, Max Blumenthal reports, she may dump him to save herself.  —  While priming her political machine …
Discussion: Progressive Alaska
RELATED:
Akmuckraker / The Mudflats:
Leathers and Lima Beans
LATimes / L.A. Now:
Phil Spector guilty in Lana Clarkson's death  —  Latest story: Phil Spector convicted of second-degree murder  —  Phil Spector has been convicted of second-degree murder in the fatal shooting of actress Lana Clarkson six years ago.  An L.A. Superior Court jury reached its decision …
Discussion: Telegraph and Law Blog
RELATED:
CNN:
Jury reaches verdict in Phil Spector retrial
Discussion: Telegraph and L.A. Now
Guardian:   Phil Spector convicted of murder
CNN:
CNN Poll: Obama not making U.S. less safe  —  WASHINGTON (CNN) - A new poll indicates Americans don't agree with former Vice President Dick Cheney's recent assertion that President Barack Obama's actions have increased the chances of a terrorist attack against the United States.
Discussion: Crooks and Liars
RELATED:
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:   Parsing the Polls: Dick Cheney, Joe Biden and America's Safety
Jonah Goldberg / The Corner:
Rush & Me, Today  —  I'm not listening.  I have two pressing deadlines.  But I keep getting a lot of email about it.  For instance: Jonah, Apparently Rush is pointing out the absurdity in your praising Obama and not praising those who were directly responsible for the rescue by being absurd.
Natasha Korecki / Chicago Sun Times:
The Jackson $5 million?  —  The Sun-Times has learned that 2 members of Chicago's Indian community sent word to Blagojevich's camp that Jesse Jackson Jr. would raise $5 million in exchange for Obama's Senate seat  —  Former Gov. Rod Blagojevich's camp was told last year that U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. …
Josh Kraushaar / Scorecard's Blog:
The latest NY 20 tally: Murphy by 25  —  According to the latest official count this morning in the special election, Democrat Scott Murphy holds a 25-vote lead over Republican Jim Tedisco in New York's 20th District.  —  The 10:30 a.m. tally shows Murphy with 77,907 votes and Tedisco with 77,882 votes.
RELATED:
Josh Kraushaar / Scorecard's Blog:
The battle over the absentee ballots
Discussion: Taegan Goddard's …
Communications / OpenSecrets.org:
OpenSecrets.org Goes OpenData  —  Award-winning website from the Center for Responsive Politics now provides 20 years of downloadable money-in-politics data—for free  —  WASHINGTON — Politicians, prepare yourselves.  Lobbyists, look out.  Today the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics …
Discussion: Sunlight Foundation
Hugh Hewit / www.washingtonexaminer.com:
Trillions for pork but nothing for the Raptors?  —  Has the world really changed that much since 1990?  —  When the Air Force first announced its planned procurement of the F-22 Raptors, the intended acquisition was for 750 of the fighters.  The Soviet Union was the enemy then, and soon thereafter the Soviet Union fell apart.
Discussion: Hot Air and The Obama Legacy
RELATED:
Washington Post:
Moving Beyond the F-22
pw:
Apologies to Glenn Greenwald.  —  I had accused him of being a partisan idiot.
Glenn Greenwald / Salon:
An emerging progressive consensus on Obama's executive power and secrecy abuses  —  (updated below - Update II)  —  In the last week alone, the Obama DOJ (a) attempted to shield Bush's illegal spying programs from judicial review by (yet again) invoking the very “state secrets” …
RELATED:
Greg Sargent / The Plum Line:
White House Mum On Legislation That Would Nix Bush “State Secrets Privilege”
 
 
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 More Items: 
Boston Herald:
Lessons of war  —  Once again President Barack Obama has acted …
Discussion: Don Surber
Carrie Budoff Brown / The Politico:
Obama boosts anti-abortion efforts
Discussion: Townhall.com and The Plank
Eric Zimmermann / The Hill's Blog Briefing Room:
Mich. dealership slams Shelby in ad
Discussion: The Moderate Voice
Kos / Daily Kos:
Poll: Americans love France, San Francisco, Europe, and NYC
Andrew Cohen / CBS News:
A Pirate Looks at Trial
Jonah Goldberg / The Corner:
Re: Congratulating Obama
 Earlier Items: 
Joe Klein / Swampland:
Obama and the Pirates  —  It's better to be lucky than good.
Discussion: Daily Kos and UN Dispatch
Ezra Klein / American Prospect:
WILL THE MAINE GIRLS SWING?
Discussion: Washington Monthly
Nate Silver / FiveThirtyEight:
What Would a “Bipartisan” Obama Look Like?  (Hint: A Lot Like the One We're Seeing)
Discussion: TalkLeft and Democratic Strategist