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12:45 AM ET, December 2, 2009

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Washington Post:
Obama's Afghan policy speech at West Point  —  Following is the transcript of President Obama's speech Tuesday at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y. (The Post's report on the president's address is here.)  —  Thank you.  Please be seated.  —  Good evening.
RELATED:
Andrew Sullivan / The Daily Dish:
Live-Blogging West Point  —  8.35 pm.  “Not the deepest of fears but the highest of hopes.”  —  I confess I do not feel those highest hopes.  I do not share his confidence in American military and civilian power to turn the roiling region of Afghanistan and Pakistan into something less threatening.
Paul / Power Line:
What I heard tonight  —  Earlier today I wondered whether President Obama's speech about Afghanistan would sound more like a description of a war plan or a structured settlement of a legal dispute.  What I heard tonight tilted decidedly in the latter direction.
Discussion: The Jawa Report and Gateway Pundit
CNN:
Just In: Key Obama speech excerpts released  —  (CNN) - The White House just released excerpts of President Obama's prime-time televised speech where he will outline his strategy on Afghanistan.
Fred Barnes / Weekly Standard:
A Disappointing Speech in Support of the Right Policy  —  President Obama's speech on Afghanistan was disappointing.  Yes, the policy is right: more troops, a counter-insurgency strategy, a stronger alliance with Pakistan.  But the personal commitment of the president to pursue the war …
Discussion: Commentary and American Power
Spencer Ackerman / The Washington Independent:
McChrystal Praises Obama, Strategy Review  —  So much for the “dithering” critique.  Here is a statement just released by Gen. Stanley McChrystal, commander of U.S. and NATO troops in Afghanistan, expressing full support and confidence in President Obama and the weeks-long strategy review.
William Kristol / PostPartisan:
A war president  —  In his Monday open letter/cri de coeur to the man he supported for president, Michael Moore asked Barack Obama: … Well, it is so.  President Obama went to West Point, said it was an honor to be with young soldiers who embody what's finest about our country …
Mary Katharine Ham / Weekly Standard:
McCain Press Release: ‘Success is the Real Exit Strategy.’
Discussion: Hot Air and Commentary
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blog:
Briefing the Afghanistan speech
Discussion: The Hill and Commentary
Laura Rozen / Laura Rozen's Blog:
Obama at West Point: I do not make this decision lightly
Discussion: The Note
Hotline On Call:
Tanner To Retire  —  Rep. John Tanner (D-TN), a leading Blue Dog Dem, will retire at the end of his current term, Dem sources tell Hotline OnCall.  —  [UPDATE: Tanner released a statement late tonight confirming the news.  “Betty Ann and I had considered retiring in 2007 at the end of the 110th Congress …
RELATED:
The Politico:
Blue Dog Tanner to retire from House  —  Rep. John Tanner (D-Tenn.) announced Tuesday evening that he will retire at the end of his term, a move sure to spark speculation that other veteran House Democrats facing tough re-election campaigns may instead head for the exits.
Aaron Blake / The Hill:   Reports: Tanner to retire
RELATED:
James Fallows:
In praise of George W. Bush  —  Since the results of the 2008 election became clear, the 43rd President of the United States has behaved in a way that brings honor to him, his family, his office, and his country.  By all reports he did what he could to smooth the transition to his successor …
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Jeff Poor / NewsBusters.org:
Matthews Calls West Point, Site of Obama Speech ‘The Enemy Camp,’ ‘Strange Venue’  —  Either MSNBC “Hardball” host Chris Matthews let one slip tonight, or it was an extremely poor choice of words.  —  Following President Barack Obama's Dec. 1 speech, which he announced his intentions …
Discussion: Scared Monkeys and Erick's blog
RELATED:
Jeff Zeleny / The Caucus:
Analyzing Obama's Afghan Speech
Michael Calderone / Michael Calderone's Blog:
Obama lunches with top political writers  —  On the day of his major Afghanistan speech, President Obama had lunch with a group of top political writers at the White House, according to a source familiar with the lunch.  —  There were some attendees today who write extensively on foreign policy …
RELATED:
Marc Ambinder / The Atlantic Politics Channel:
Lunch With The President: The Politics Of Obama's War Plan
Christopher Soghoian / slight paranoia:
8 Million Reasons for Real Surveillance Oversight  —  Disclaimer: The information presented here has been gathered and analyzed in my capacity as a graduate student at Indiana University.  This data was gathered and analyzed on my own time, without using federal government resources.
Megan McArdle:
ClimateGate III: The Mystery of the Missing Data  —  Over the weekend, I came in for some probably deserved criticism from Clive Crook over my initial, somewhat airy, reaction to ClimateGate.  In my defense, he quotes my first post on the topic, not the follow up.
RELATED:
Andrew Sullivan / The Daily Dish:
Leaving the Right  —  It's an odd formulation in some ways as “the right” is not really a single entity.  But in so far as it means the dominant mode of discourse among the institutions and blogs and magazines and newspapers and journals that support the GOP, Charles Johnson is absolutely right …
Max Blumenthal / Mondoweiss:
Gutsy progressive congressman Alan Grayson leads a double life  —  Since defeating an incumbent in Florida's Republican-heavy 8th congressional district last year, Rep. Alan Grayson has emerged as one of the progressive movement's most vocal champions.  His attacks on Republican obstruction …
Discussion: TPMCafe and The Huffington Post
Arianna Huffington / The Huffington Post:
Journalism 2009: Desperate Metaphors, Desperate Revenue Models, And The Desperate Need For Better Journalism  —  I was asked to give a speech this morning at a journalism conference in Washington, DC sponsored by the Federal Trade Commission.  The topic, as it so often seems to be these days, is what can be done to save journalism?
RELATED:
CODEPINK:
November 30, 2009  —  There are news reports that on Decembers 1st, Obama will be at West Point to announce that he is sending tens of thousands more troops to Afghanistan, this despite our rallies, vigils, petitions, phone calls and e-mails saying NO to MORE WAR.
Discussion: Conventional Folly
Dan Collyns / BBC:
Peru human fat killings ‘a lie’  —  Peru's police chief has suspended a top investigator for saying he had caught a gang who were murdering people to sell their fat.  —  Last month, top organised crime investigator Eusebio Felix said police had arrested four suspects who confessed to murdering up to 60 people.
Ben Armbruster / Think Progress:
Grassley: 'I've lived off the public tit' as a congressman.  —  On C-SPAN's Washington Journal this morning, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) was asked if he thought the health care reform bill before the Senate amounted to socialism.  “No,” Grassley said, but he then attacked the public option aspect of the bill, calling it “socialism.”
Eric Zimmermann / The Hill:
Palin blasts media for bus tour stories  —  Sarah Palin fired back at the media today for a series of stories on her travel arrangements.  —  Over the last few days, several outlets have picked up on the story that Palin actually flew to some of the stops on her “bus tour.”  (Here, here, and here, for example.)
The Hill:
New public option plan  —  A new measure on the public option will be unveiled next week, which Senate Democratic leaders hope will break the logjam on healthcare reform.  —  Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.), who has been tapped by Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) to come up with a Plan B approach …
Discussion: Taegan Goddard's …
 
 
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 More Items: 
Jeffrey M. Jones / Gallup:
Obama Approval on Afghanistan, at 35%, Trails Other Issues
Discussion: The Hill and Politics Daily
Ezra Klein:
Howard Dean: Health-care reform ‘worthless’ without the public option
Discussion: TalkLeft
Stage Right / Big Government:
Anatomy of a Beat-Down Part 2: Why Kenneth Gladney Was Beaten And by Whom
Discussion: RedState
Media Relations / SPD Blotter:
Officer involved shooting in South Seattle
Discussion: New York Times, TalkLeft and CNN
John Cook / Gawker:
A Bravo Contract Delivered White House Gatecrashers to the Today Show
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
Does Ben Nelson Know What “War Bonds” Are?
Discussion: msnbc.com, Firedoglake and Eschaton
 Earlier Items: 
Carrie Budoff Brown / The Politico:
Collins vote appears up for grabs
The Hill:
Sen. Nelson says he will target abortion funding in health bill
Duncan Gardham / Telegraph:
Al-Qaeda ‘terrorists’ win right to hear secret evidence
Discussion: Jihad Watch
Lila Shapiro / The Huffington Post:
Rep. Hinchey: Bush Administration 'Intentionally Let bin Laden …
Discussion: The Stranger …
Tim Craig / Washington Post:
D.C. Council votes to legalize same-sex marriage
Sharon Theimer / Associated Press:
PROMISES, PROMISES: Friday is still WH ‘trash day’
Discussion: Alex Conant and JammieWearingFool