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11:57 AM ET, September 21, 2009


 Top Items: 
Bob Woodward / Washington Post:
McChrystal: More Forces or ‘Mission Failure’  —  Top U.S. Commander For Afghan War Calls Next 12 Months Decisive  —  The top U.S. and NATO commander in Afghanistan warns in an urgent, confidential assessment of the war that he needs more forces within the next year and bluntly states that without them …
The Huffington Post:
Bush In 2008: “I'm Not Going To Tell Some Gay Kid In The Audience That He Can't Get Married”  —  Speechwriter Matt Latimer's new book trains its gaze on the lunacy of the late-era Bush White House.  And there was plenty of material.  —  Latimer, who first wrote speeches and congressional testimony …
Ross Douthat / New York Times:
The Self-Correcting Presidency  —  Last week, the Census Bureau released a statistical report on the last year of George W. Bush's presidency.  The numbers were brutal.  On every indicator, Americans lost ground during the Bush era.  The median income slumped.  The poverty rate increased.
Howard Kurtz / Washington Post:
Obama's TV Blitz: On The Air, but Off His Game?  —  The White House doesn't buy the notion that President Obama, who appeared on five talk shows Sunday and is heading next for David Letterman's couch, could be wearing out his welcome on the tube.  —  Sure, this is a president …
Alessandra Stanley / New York Times:
For President, Five Programs, One Message  —  No one shifted an armchair, moved a flower arrangement or asked an unexpected question.  —  President Obama gave five back-to-back television interviews broadcast on Sunday that were as tightly choreographed — and eerily similar …
Charles Hurt / New York Post:
On-the-air prez seems like endless ‘infomercial’
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
Taxes and Mandates  —  On ABC News yesterday, George Stephanopoulos tried to get Barack Obama to agree than an individual mandate to buy health insurance is a kind of tax increase.  Obama disagreed: … Not being a politicians, I can just note that we generally speak the English language …
Frank Newport / Gallup:
Americans More Likely to Say Government Doing Too Much  —  Belief that government is over-regulating business is at high for decade  —  PRINCETON, NJ — Americans are more likely today than in the recent past to believe that government is taking on too much responsibility for solving …
Discussion: Politics Daily and Hot Air
Byron York / Washington Examiner:
New poll: Majority believe government is doing too much
Susan Page / USA Today:
Secret interviews add insight to Clinton presidency  —  BALTIMORE — The call from the White House usually would come in late afternoon.  President Clinton had a few hours open in the evening.  Could he come over?  —  Taylor Branch, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author and civil rights historian …
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
Reform or Bust  —  In the grim period that followed Lehman's failure, it seemed inconceivable that bankers would, just a few months later, be going right back to the practices that brought the world's financial system to the edge of collapse.  At the very least, one might have thought …
Scott / Power Line:
Sliming James O'Keefe: A case study  —  James O'Keefe and Hannah Giles are the young activists who have blown the lid off the criminal left-wing enterprise known as ACORN.  If they were left-wingers exposing some conservative or religious organization, government-funded or not …
Discussion: The Huffington Post
Michael O'Brien / The Hill:
Obama open to newspaper bailout bill  —  The president said he is “happy to look at” bills before Congress that would give struggling news organizations tax breaks if they were to restructure as nonprofit businesses.  —  “I haven't seen detailed proposals yet, but I'll be happy to look at them …
Big Hollywood:
Pregame Report: The NEA Conference Call  —  On August 25th 2009, Big Hollywood's Patrick Courrielche broke the story of a conference call he attended with other “rising artist and art community luminaries”: … The email invite came directly from Yosi Sergant, then-Director of Communications …
Jacob Weisberg / Slate:
First They Came for the Marlboros  —  The hazards of Michael Bloomberg's paternalist utopia.  —  Last Monday dawned clear and bright in the nanny state of New York City.  The newspaper brought word that the city's new health commissioner was working on ways to get residents to exercise more.
Discussion: Politics Daily
Marist Poll:
9/21: Bloomberg Leads Thompson 50% to 39%
Discussion: City Room
Palin to speak about China in debut speech in Asia  —  Former US vice-presidential nominee Sarah Palin is expected to speak about US foreign policy and China in her first keynote speech outside North America, Hong Kong organisers said on Monday.  —  Palin, mocked during last year's presidential campaign …
David Remnick / New Yorker:
BLAGO SPEAKS.  AGAIN.  —  The American political memoir comes in many forms—the magisterial catalogue of heroic achievement, the backward glance at modest beginnings—but none of these sub-genres have thrived with more repetition and variation than the cri de coeur of the indicted-but-not-yet-convicted office-holding grandee.
Discussion: Taegan Goddard's …
Bernie Quigley / Pundits Blog:
Mitt Romney's speech unites conservatives  —  At the 2009 Value Voters Summit this past week, Mitt Romney directly addressed President Barack Obama's incomprehensible and fatally flawed decision, unprecedented in the American political tradition, to tax future generations.
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 More Items: 
Yves Smith / naked capitalism:
Guest Post: Satyajit Das on Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde Finance
Discussion: The Baseline Scenario
Washington Post:
Take a Hard Stance in Talks With Iran
Discussion: Commentary and The New Republic
Daniel Malloy / Toledo Blade:
Ex-organizer says he was never a fan of mass protests
Jane Hamsher / Firedoglake:
Video of AFSCME's Gerald McEntee: Baucus Bill is “Bulls**t”
Discussion: Ben Smith's Blog
Lisa Lerer / The Politico:
Is Lieberman at it again?
Discussion: Wonkette
 Earlier Items: 
Wall Street Journal:
Hillary's Honduras Obsession
Washington Post:
Banks' Overdraft Fees Under Fire in Congress
Victoria McGrane / The Politico:
Moderate Dems may buck Obama plan
Discussion: Blog entry and The Page
Urban Infidel:
Glenn Beck Derangement Syndrome