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11:05 AM ET, September 2, 2009

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
The Politico:
Under fire, Obama shifts strategy  —  Aides to President Barack Obama are putting the final touches on a new strategy to help Democrats recover from a brutal August recess by specifying what Obama wants to see in a compromise health care deal and directly confronting other trouble spots, West Wing officials tell POLITICO.
RELATED:
Charles Babington / Associated Press:   White House: Obama may detail health plans soon
Ken Boehm / National Legal and Policy Center:
Obama White House Has Secret Plan To Harvest Personal Data From Social Networking Websites  —  NLPC has uncovered a plan by the White House New Media operation to hire a technology vendor to conduct a massive, secret effort to harvest personal information on millions of Americans from social networking websites.
Alexander Bolton / The Hill:
Pelosi will let Rangel hold post despite latest allegations  —  Speaker Nancy Pelosi will let Rep. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) keep his chairmanship despite his failing to report hundreds of thousands of dollars in assets on federal disclosure forms, according to Democratic aides.
RELATED:
Vanity Fair:
Levi Johnston: “Me and Mrs. Palin”  —  Left, photograph by Nigel Parry/CPi Syndication.  Right, photograph by Mark Seliger.  —  Three days after Sarah Palin was announced as the Republican vice-presidential candidate, the McCain campaign released a statement saying that her 17-year-old unwed daughter, Bristol, was pregnant.
Karen DeYoung / Washington Post:
Taliban Surprising U.S. Forces With Improved Tactics  —  The Taliban has become a much more potent adversary in Afghanistan by improving its own tactics and finding gaps in the U.S. military playbook, according to senior American military officials who acknowledged that the enemy's resurgence this year has taken them by surprise.
RELATED:
Mark Sherman / Associated Press:
Justice Stevens slows his hiring at high court  —  WASHINGTON — Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens has hired fewer law clerks than usual, generating speculation that the leader of the court's liberals will retire next year.  —  If Stevens does step down, he would give President Barack Obama …
Valerie Bauerlein / Wall Street Journal:
Shamed Governor Battles to Save Job  —  ORANGEBURG, S.C. — South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford, stung by political attacks over his extramarital affair with an Argentine woman, said in his first extended interview since June that he no longer wants to “crawl into a cave” and will fight to keep …
Discussion: Politics Daily and TPMMuckraker
RELATED:
Ralph Z. Hallow / Washington Times:
Gov. Sanford says God on his side
Discussion: Taegan Goddard's …
Carl Hulse / New York Times:
Conservative Democrats Expect a Health Deal  —  WASHINGTON — Like her colleagues, Representative Stephanie Herseth Sandlin, a South Dakota Democrat and leader of the fiscally conservative Blue Dog Coalition, has been weathering the summer of health care discontent.
Julian E. Barnes / Los Angeles Times:
U.S. to boost combat force in Afghanistan  —  Support units will be replaced by up to 14,000 ‘trigger-pullers,’ and noncombat posts will be contracted out, Defense officials say.  The swap will allow the U.S. to keep its troop level unchanged.  —  U.S. troops patrol in Kunar province.
Major Tom / Media Matters for America:
Why Glenn Beck, and Fox News, can't escape the “racist” trap  —  Have so many blue-chip advertisers ever fled a program as quickly as the who's who of corporate America that's sprinted away from Glenn Beck in recent weeks?  I certainly cannot recall ever seeing a mass exodus of this scale.
RELATED:
Rory Cooper / The Foundry:
Obama's Team Crosses the Rhetorical Line  —  (Update: The website cited below has been suspended by barackobama.com.  The screenshot to the right is the original page, but the embedded links will no longer work.  Click on the picture to the right for a full-screen view.)
RELATED:
Andrew Malcolm / Top of the Ticket:
Guest list for Obama's White House Ramadan dinner  —  (UPDATE: 5:48 p.m. The president's dinner remarks — sans teleprompter — have been added to the end of this item.)  —  The other day President Obama issued a special message to the Muslim world for the annual Ramadan holiday.
Discussion: Atlas Shrugs
RELATED:
David A. Harris / The Huffington Post:
Look Who's Coming To Dinner
Discussion: Israel Matzav and Ben Smith's Blog
Tim Nudd / AdFreak:
WWF condemns 9/11 print ad by DDB Brazil  —  [NOTE: The WWF says it never approved this ad and is condemning it.  See the updates below.]  Just in time for the anniversary of 9/11 comes this tasteless, nightmarish print ad for the World Wildlife Fund, showing dozens of planes headed for lower Manhattan.
RELATED:
Michael Goldfarb / Weekly Standard:
WWF Exploits 9/11  —  It's shameful.  An ad by the World …
Discussion: protein wisdom and American Power
Ace / Ace of Spades HQ:
Hey, Obama, Can We See the Text of Your Speech to Every Schoolkid Before You Deliver It?  —  Suggested Activity: Students can “Write Letters to Themselves About What They Can Do To Help the President”  —  Update: Ed at Hot Air catches the suggestion in the teachers' materials that students …
Discussion: Snapped Shot and Moe Lane
RELATED:
Michelle Malkin:
Obama's Sept. 8 speech to schoolchildren
Deborah Solomon / Wall Street Journal:
U.S. Economy Gets Lift From Stimulus  —  WASHINGTON — Government efforts to funnel hundreds of billions of dollars into the U.S. economy appear to be helping the U.S. climb out of the worst recession in decades.  —  But there's little agreement about which programs are having the biggest impact.
Steven Greenhouse / New York Times:
Low-Wage Workers Are Often Cheated, Study Says  —  Low-wage workers are routinely denied proper overtime pay and are often paid less than the minimum wage, according to a new study based on a survey of workers in New York, Los Angeles and Chicago.  —  The study, the most comprehensive examination …
Los Angeles Times:
Hostages of the Hermit Kingdom  —  Laura Ling and Euna Lee, the two American journalists released last month after being imprisoned in North Korea, tell their story — and remind people of the story they wanted to cover.  —  We arrived at the frozen river separating China and North Korea at 5 o'clock on the morning of March 17.
Nissan Ratzlav-Katz / Arutz Sheva:
Ahmadinejad's Imam: Islam Allows Raping, Torturing Prisoners  —  Follow Israel news on and .  —  (IsraelNN.com) A highly influential Shi'a religious leader, with whom Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad regularly consults, apparently told followers last month that coercion by means of rape …
Peter Baker / New York Times:
A Real Fairy-Tale Wedding  —  WASHINGTON - Here's a newsflash: Chelsea Clinton did not get married last month in a swank, celebrity-laden wedding on Martha's Vineyard attended by the president of the United States.  —  For four months, the Clintons have told anyone who would listen …
Nick Timiraos / Wall Street Journal:
Industry Seeks Fannie, Freddie Overhaul  —  A mortgage-industry trade group is calling for Congress to transform Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac into several smaller privately held companies that would issue mortgage securities carrying an explicit government guarantee.
 
 
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 More Items: 
Rasmussen Reports:
42% Say People Randomly Selected from Phone Book Better Than Current Congress
Charles Franklin / Pollster.com:
How Fast Does Approval Fall?
Tom Coburn / Wall Street Journal:
What I Learned From the ‘Mob’
James Oliphant / Los Angeles Times:
States most likely to win under healthcare overhaul are home to its biggest foes
 Earlier Items: 
Greg Sargent / The Plum Line:
Obama's Political Operation Escalates Attack On Media; Raises …
The Corner on National Review Online:
Krauthammer's Take — By: NRO Staff
Discussion: Israel Matzav
Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo:
“Minor Revolution”
Elpresidente / Peoples Press Collective:
“Death Threat” For Rep. John Salazar (CO) A “False Flag” Operation?
CNN:
CNN Poll: Independents disapprove of Obama