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2:50 PM ET, April 17, 2009

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Wall Street Journal:
The President Ties His Own Hands on Terror  —  The point of interrogation is intelligence, not confession.  —  The Obama administration has declassified and released opinions of the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) given in 2005 and earlier that analyze the legality …
RELATED:
Glenn Greenwald / Salon:
The significance of Obama's decision to release the torture memos  —  (updated below)  —  Numerous commentators are objecting to the idea that Barack Obama deserves credit for his release of the OLC torture memos yesterday in light of his accompanying pledge that CIA officials relying in good faith on those memos won't be prosecuted.
Andrew Sullivan / The Daily Dish:
The Bigger Picture  —  It will take some time to absorb the full implications of the ICRC report and the OLC memos.  Right now, many are understandably focused on the legal details, the grotesque specifics of the techniques ("insects", “walling”?), the inconsistencies of the memos …
William Kristol / Weekly Standard:
“On a bright, sunny, safe day in April 2009.”  —  It wasn't really a surprise that President Obama sided with leftist lawyers in his Justice Department and released, over the objections of the intelligence community, four Office of Legal Counsel memos that concluded certain interrogation techniques used …
Dafna Linzer / ProPublica:
Newly Released Memo Inadvertently Reveals CIA Held (and Abused) Missing Prisoner  —  Among the OLC memos released today, one appears to inadvertently reveal that a top al-Qaida suspect captured in northern Iraq in January 2004 was held by the CIA in a secret prison.
Adam Serwer / American Prospect:
Accounts of Torture, Abstract and Experienced
Teddy Davis / The Note:
McCain Guru Urges GOP to Back Gay Marriage  —  ABC News' Teddy Davis reports:  —  Former top McCain adviser Steve Schmidt is planning to use a Friday speech to the Log Cabin Republicans to urge the GOP to drop its opposition to same-sex marriage.  —  “I'm confident American public opinion …
RELATED:
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:   STEVE SCHMIDT HAS SOME ADVICE FOR HIS PARTY.... Steve Schmidt …
Katharine Q. Seelye / The Caucus:   Top G.O.P. Consultant Endorses Gay Marriage
Melinda Henneberger / AOL News:
Palin Says She Considered Abortion  —  In her first out-of-state political appearance since last fall's presidential election, former GOP vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin confided to 3,000 at a right-to-life event here that she had “just for a fleeting moment” contemplated seeking …
Discussion: The Sleuth and The Campaign Spot
RELATED:
John M. Broder / New York Times:
E.P.A. to Clear the Way for Regulation of Warming Gases  —  WASHINGTON — The Environmental Protection Agency on Friday is expected to formally declare carbon dioxide and other heat-trapping gases to be pollutants that threaten public health and welfare, setting in motion a process …
RELATED:
Rasmussen Reports:
In Texas, 31% Say State Has Right to Secede From U.S., But 75% Opt To Stay  —  Thirty-one percent (31%) of Texas voters say that their state has the right to secede from the United States and form an independent country.  —  However, the latest Rasmussen Reports poll in the state finds …
Max Twain / race42008.com:
One of the most hateful rants in history  —  http://www.youtube.com/watch?  v=jAAHMDpk7Ik  —  Surprisingly, Olbermann is not the craziest person in this video.  That alone puts this into a special category of left-wing vile that stands out as some of the most hateful speech you will ever hear on television.
Kahrin Deines / Associated Press:
New gun law aimed at asserting sovereignty  —  Gov. Brian Schweitzer has signed into law a bill that aims to exempt Montana-made guns from federal regulation, adding firepower to a battery of legislative efforts to assert states' rights across the nation.  —  “It's a gun bill …
K. Daniel Glover / Accuracy in Media:
Direct Your Tweet Outrage To Katie Couric  —  Two days ago, journalist John Ziegler was arrested for trying to ask questions at an event where Katie Couric of CBS News received an award for her interview with Republican vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin last fall.
Discussion: INSTAPUTZ and AmSpecBlog
Bruce Bartlett / Forbes:
Tax Tea Party Time, Part Two  —  A look at today's taxes compared to those in the past.  —  Last week, I presented data comparing taxation in the United States to other major countries and concluded that Americans are not especially overtaxed.  The almost universal reaction to this analysis was, “So what?”
Media Matters for America:
On the house: Fox aired 107 ads for its coverage of tea party protests over 10 days … From April 6 to April 15, Fox News aired at least 107 commercial promotions for their coverage of the tea party protests that took place on April 15.  As Media Matters for America has documented …
Jamie Larson / The Register Star Online:
Tedisco asks to be declared winner  —  COLUMBIA COUNTY — 20th Congressional District candidate Republican Jim Tedisco submitted a petition to the Dutchess County Supreme Court Thursday asking the judge to declare him the winner of the extremely close special election race …
Jeffrey M. Jones / Gallup:
Obama Averages 63% Approval in His First Quarter  —  Highest first-quarter average since 1977  — USA - Government and Politics - Presidential Job Approval - The Presidency - Americas - Northern America  —  PRINCETON, NJ — Barack Obama's first quarter in office concludes on Sunday …
Peter Whoriskey / Washington Post:
Rescued Banks Balk at Chrysler Deal  —  Creditors Pushed To Surrender Claims Of Billions  —  At a meeting with executives from four of the nation's largest banks earlier this month, the chief of the government's auto task force, Steven Rattner, delivered a message that shocked some in the room.
Wall Street Journal:
Veterans a Focus of FBI Extremist Probe  —  WASHINGTON — The Federal Bureau of Investigation earlier this year launched a nationwide operation targeting white supremacists and “militia/sovereign-citizen extremist groups,” including a focus on veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan …
Yael T. Abouhalkah / Kansas City Star:
Limbaugh's ‘just an entertainer,’ says GOP congressman  —  U.S. Rep. Todd Tiahrt of Kansas is a feisty and ardent conservative.  But he said something Tuesday that might irritate Rush Limbaugh's ditto-head followers.  —  Tiahrt was asked by a Kansas City Star Editorial Board member whether Limbaugh …
Megan McArdle:
Do We Hate Credit Default Swaps for The Wrong Reasons?  —  There's a lot of crazy ignorant hating on CDSs out there, especially from certain political journalists who displayed no interest in learning about the financial community until they found that pronouncing the words “credit default swaps” …
Jonah Goldberg / The Corner:
Taxes & Tyranny  —  Amidst all of the hooplah, I've heard a lot of complaints from liberals.  Here are the most frequent complaints and my responses.  1. All of this tyranny talk is overheated and idiotic.  Well, some of it surely is.  But look.  According to that reason video I posted below …
Discussion: protein wisdom and Vox Popoli
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
Green Shoots and Glimmers  —  Ben Bernanke, the Federal Reserve chairman, sees “green shoots.”  President Obama sees “glimmers of hope.”  And the stock market has been on a tear.  —  So is it time to sound the all clear?  Here are four reasons to be cautious about the economic outlook.
Wall Street Journal:
Goodbye Bland Affluence  —  Get ready for authenticity chic.  —  A small sign of the times: USA Today this week ran an article about a Michigan family that, under financial pressure, decided to give up credit cards, satellite television, high-tech toys and restaurant dining, to live on a 40-acre farm and become more self-sufficient.
Associated Press:
Court blocks Bush-era Alaska drilling plan  —  Interior Department is ordered to conduct environmental review  —  WASHINGTON - A Bush-era program to expand oil and gas drilling off the Alaska coast was blocked Friday by a federal appeals court because of environmental concerns.
David Neiwert / Crooks and Liars:
Pat Robertson urges his callers to crash Homeland Security hotline  —  You can view this video right here by getting the latest version of Flash Player!  —  Pat Robertson, on The 700 Club yesterday, got in on the collective right-wing teeth-gnashing over that Department of Homeland Security bulletin …
Discussion: CBN.com
Brian C. Mooney / Boston Globe:
Dodd faces steep road to reelection  —  Conn.'s senior senator trails 3 Republicans  —  HARTFORD - The election is still more than 18 months away, but US Senator Chris Dodd is barnstorming Connecticut this week like an incumbent in trouble.  Voters who have supported him for 29 years …
Ross Douthat:
A Goodbye  —  This has been my last week at The Atlantic.  The magazine has been my home for seven years, under four editors, permanent and interim: The late Michael Kelly; Cullen Murphy, Scott Stossel and now James Bennet.  When I joined up, in the fall of 2002, it was as a researcher in the D.C. office …
 
 
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 More Items: 
James L. / Swing State Project:
House 1Q 2009 Fundraising Roundup
Discussion: Calitics
C. J. Chivers / New York Times:
Turning Tables, U.S. Troops Ambush Taliban With Swift and Lethal Results
Discussion: abu muqawama
Mickey Kaus / Kausfiles:
New Dem Health Care Pitch: “We'll Deny Treatments!”
BBC:
Court jails Pirate Bay founders
Discussion: Truthdig
 Earlier Items: 
Paul Kane / Washington Post:
3 Lawmakers Report Drop in Donations After Lobby Firm Closes
Barry Ritholtz / The Big Picture:
Stiglitz: Blame Summers
Discussion: Obsidian Wings and Eschaton
Wall Street Journal:
Alternative Fuel Folly
Discussion: Blue Crab Boulevard
Joshua Stanton / The New Ledger:
Christopher Hill: Deep Kimchee for Iraq
Andrew Sullivan / The Daily Dish:
We Are Now Indonesia  —  Greenwald points to this nugget:
Discussion: Blog of Rights and NO QUARTER