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11:55 AM ET, August 8, 2009


 Top Items: 
David D. Kirkpatrick / New York Times:
Obama Reverses Stand on Drug Industry Deal  —  WASHINGTON — Caught between a pivotal industry ally and the protests of Congressional Democrats, the Obama administration on Friday backed away from what drug industry lobbyists had said this week was a firm White House promise to exclude …
Discussion: AMERICAblog News
The Huffington Post:
White House Confirms: Deal With Big Pharma Bars Price Negotiations  —  In closed-door negotiations with President Obama and his top aides throughout the spring, Big Pharma offered its support for comprehensive health care reform and pledged to cut $80 billion in costs over the next ten years.
Dr. L. Toni Lewis, MD / SEIU:
Stop the violence at health care town halls  —  Things are turning ugly.  Town halls, which typically serve as open, safe environments to ask questions of elected officials, have degenerated into violent shouting matches.  —  Last night in St. Louis, Missouri, a reverend and member of SEIU was assaulted at a town hall.
Eric Kleefeld / TPMDC:
Palin: Obama's “Death Panel” Could Kill My Down Syndrome Baby  —  In a new posting on her Facebook account, former Gov. Sarah Palin (R-AK) made a dire statement about health care reform — that it could result in an Obama-created “death panel” killing her infant son with Down Syndrome:
Allahpundit / Hot Air:
Video: Democrat screams at constituent for asking tough question on health care  —  And by “constituent,” I of course mean crypto-Nazi political terrorist.  You'll find the full unedited exchange right here but I'm giving you the news segment because it provides important context.
Allahpundit / Hot Air:
Video: Democratic congresswoman holds “prayer vigil” on health care  —  Remind me, which prayer is it that involves ranting about the stimulus bill and demanding single-payer health care?  Was that the one Jesus taught the crowd when he gave his sermon on insurance premiums?
Discussion: American Power and Newsalert
Philip Rucker / Washington Post:
Embattled S.C. Governor Sanford, Wife Are Splitting Up  —  Jenny Sanford, the wife of South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford, announced Friday morning that she and their sons will leave the governor's mansion in Columbia and settle in the Charleston area, a split that comes after the couple tried for seven weeks to mend their marriage.
Discussion: Raw Story
Alan Colmes' Liberaland:   Jenny Sanford Moving Out Of Gov. Mansion With Kids
Shaila Dewan / New York Times:   Governor Sanford's Wife Moves Out of Mansion
Ian Urbina / New York Times:
Health Debate Turns Hostile at Town Hall Meetings  —  The bitter divisions over an overhaul of the health care system have exploded at town-hall-style meetings over the last few days as members of Congress have been shouted down, hanged in effigy and taunted by crowds.
David Leonhardt / New York Times:
As Economy Turns, Washington Looks Better  —  WASHINGTON — What if in the end they got it right?  —  What if, amid all their missteps and all the harsh criticism, the people in charge of battling the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression — Ben Bernanke, Timothy Geithner …
Discussion: Prairie Weather
Seema Mehta / Los Angeles Times:
Budget cuts put new textbook purchases on hold  —  The state and many California school districts look to save money by postponing approvals of updated books.  Some fear the moves may put students at a disadvantage.  —  History textbooks in many California classrooms won't mention the election …
Mark Silva / The Swamp:
Obama: Healthcare's ‘outlandish rumors’  —  With the White House this week gearing up a campaign to dispel “misinformation” about the healthcare reform that President Barack Obama is promoting, the president today says that it's important to quell the “outlandish rumors” circulating.
Discussion: The Politico and Liberal Values
Looking at the Left:
Nancy and the Astroturfers  —  This was the scene when I arrived at Stout Street Clinic in downtown Denver.  Nancy Pelosi is to pay a visit to the clinic within the hour.  About 200 people opposed to Obama's healthcare agenda braved the mile high Denver sun and high temperatures to show their opposition.
Peter Valdes-Dapena /
Trucks win in Cash for Clunkers game  —  Because of distorted sales figures, Ford's Escape cross-over SUV, not the Focus small car, tops the list for most popular ‘clunker’ buy.  —  NEW YORK ( — What are people trading their clunkers in for?  It depends on who you ask.
Kbh /
Will health care reform cause lower wages?  —  A new study by Steven Nyce and Syl Schieber looks at the effects on wages of expanding health insurance coverage.  Their results are devastating.  —  Dr. Schieber is a pension/benefits expert with Watson Wyatt.
Discussion: The Glittering Eye
Martin Kady II / Glenn Thrush's Blog:
So where's your birth certificate, congressman?  —  From POLITICO's Kathryn McGarr:  —  Last week, POLITICO asked the 11 House Republicans co-sponsoring the so-called “birther” bill — requiring presidential candidates to prove they were born in the U.S.— for copies of their own birth certificates.
Discussion: 24Ahead and Think Progress
Ezra Klein:
Is This Health-Care Reform's Worst Idea Yet?  —  The Senate Finance Committee does not want to propose an employer mandate to promote health-care coverage.  But it doesn't want to let employers entirely off the hook, either.  So it has come up with one of the worst ideas in recent memory: A so-called “free rider” tax.
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 More Items: 
Karen DeYoung / Washington Post:
U.S. and Britain Again Target Afghan Poppies
David Boaz / Cato @ Liberty:
The Boys Who Cried “Racist”
Discussion: The Opinionator and GayPatriot
Robert Gavin / Boston Globe:
NY Times Co. says it is in no hurry to sell Globe
Michael Sokolove / New York Times:
What's a Big City Without a Newspaper?
Ramesh Ponnuru / Time:
Obamacare's Fatal Flaw
Discussion: QandO, TigerHawk, Hot Air and PrairiePundit
Eunice Kennedy Shriver in critical condition
Discussion: Scared Monkeys
 Earlier Items: 
The Note:
Hikers Who Crossed Into Iran Have Been Moved to Tehran
Discussion: MoJo Blog Posts
‘Countdown with Keith Olbermann’ for Thursday, August 6
Discussion: Hullabaloo and Crooks and Liars
Rasmussen Reports:
41% View Town Hall Protesters Favorably, 35% Don't
Discussion: Moe Lane
Steve Krakauer / Mediaite:
Bill O'Reilly Puts His Love For Barack Obama Into A Parade Column
Discussion: Gawker

From Techmeme:

Javier Espinoza / Financial Times:
The EU Commission fines Apple €1.8B for stifling competition from rival music streaming services, the EU's third-largest antitrust fine; Apple plans to appeal

Benjamin Mayo / 9to5Mac:
Apple announces a new 13- and 15-inch MacBook Air with M3, offering an 8-core CPU and up to a 10-core GPU, starting at $1,099 or $1,299 and shipping on March 8

Rachel Metz / Bloomberg:
Anthropic announces Claude 3 Opus, Sonnet, and Haiku, aiming to reduce AI model hallucinations; Opus and Sonnet are available now, and Haiku in the coming weeks

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