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3:10 PM ET, December 2, 2009


 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.
McCain challenges Obama in private meeting  —  Washington (CNN) - Hours before he was set to address the nation on his new Afghanistan strategy, President Obama and members of his war council spent about an hour briefing senior members of Congress at a White House meeting that multiple sources described as businesslike and sobering.
Thomas L. Friedman / New York Times:
This I Believe  —  Let me start with the bottom line and then tell you how I got there: I can't agree with President Obama's decision to escalate in Afghanistan.  I'd prefer a minimalist approach, working with tribal leaders the way we did to overthrow the Taliban regime in the first place.
Discussion: Taylor Marsh
Gabor Steingart / Spiegel Online:
Searching in Vain for the Obama Magic  —  Never before has a speech by President Barack Obama felt as false as his Tuesday address announcing America's new strategy for Afghanistan.  It seemed like a campaign speech combined with Bush rhetoric — and left both dreamers and realists feeling distraught.
Fred Kaplan / Slate:
But where does it end?  —  The war that President Barack Obama laid out at West Point Tuesday night—its rationale, strategy, tactics, and resources—is different, in ways large and small, from the war that George W. Bush fought (and didn't fight) in Afghanistan.
Discussion: The Daily Dish, PoliBlog and marbury
New York Times:
Two Messages for Two Sides  —  WASHINGTON — President Obama went …
New York Post:
Setting up our military to fail
Discussion: Maggie's Farm
Tristero / Hullabaloo:   The Afghan War Gets The Speech It Deserves
Tiger Woods:
Tiger comments on current events  —  I have let my family down and I regret those transgressions with all of my heart.  I have not been true to my values and the behavior my family deserves.  I am not without faults and I am far short of perfect.  I am dealing with my behavior and personal failings behind closed doors with my family.
Woods: ‘I have let my family down’
Discussion: TalkLeft
Rick Karlin / Capitol Confidential:
This just in: Gay marriage on tap in Senate  —  Senate Democrats have just put out a notice: yes they do plan to debate the same-sex marriage bill — passed again by the Assembly last night — today.  —  They will vote on the DRP, Tier V pension plan, public authority reform and marriage equality.
Jeremy W. Peters / New York Times:
New York Senate Set to Vote on Same-Sex Marriage Bill
Andy Towle / Towleroad News #gay:
Watch Live: New York Senate Debating Marriage Bill
Discussion: The Daily Politics
Brad / Think Progress:
Lou Dobbs Explodes: ‘Who The Hell Does This President Think He Is!?!’  —  Birther Lou Dobbs and climate denier Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK) are concerned that President Barack Obama is trying to turn America into a monarchy.  Appearing on Dobbs' radio show on Tuesday, Inhofe argued President Obama …
Scott McLemee / Inside Higher Ed:
Decline of the West  —  Ten years ago, in the final pages of a collection of his selected writings, Cornel West gave readers a look at the work he had in progress, or at least in mind, for the years ahead.  One would be “a major treatment of African-American literature and modern Greek literature.”
Discussion: Ezra Klein and First Thoughts
Peter Wehner / Commentary:
A Fighting Chance  —  The decision President Obama made was better than the speech he gave.  What will matter, long after his address is forgotten, is that Barack Obama gave Generals McChrystal and Petraeus, two of our greatest military minds, the troops (30,000, plus additional allied troops) …
Sarah Palin / Facebook:
Finally, A Decision for Afghanistan: We're In It to Win It
Discussion: Stop The ACLU
Greg Sargent / The Plum Line:
Republicans Casting Afghan Decision As More McChrystal's Than Obama's
Heather / Crooks and Liars:
Matthews on Obama's Speech at West Point: He ‘Went to Maybe the Enemy Camp Tonight’  —  Chris Matthews with possibly the stupidest comment of the night after Obama's speech at West Point.  A military installation is “the enemy camp” Chris?  Unbelievable. … Matthews was already back tracking a bit later in the evening.
Discussion: NPR Blogs
Jason / The Tolbert Report:
HuckPAC Resignation  —  As I mentioned this morning, I resigned my position as Arkansas coordinator for HuckPAC today where I served in a volunteer capacity.  My departure was with a heavy heart but was done after serious prayer and consideration.  Some have asked about the timing.
Mike Huckabee / Human Events:
Washington State Tragedy
Discussion: Ben Smith's Blog
John Koblin / New York Observer:
Watch Out, Times!  Murdoch Plans $15 M. N.Y.C. Edition  —  “Good journalism is an expensive commodity,” said Rupert Murdoch at a Federal Trade Commission conference in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday, Dec. 1.  —  We'll say!  —  Mr. Murdoch is ready to roll out a budget of $15 million …
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
THERE ARE 39 OTHER GOP SENATORS.... NBC News announced the line-up for this week's “Meet the Press.”  Take a wild guess who'll be on. … I especially loved the “Exclusive!” with the exclamation point, as if this were a rare, special occurrence.  —  For those keeping score at home …
Kara Rowland / Washington Times:
Critics not invited to White House ‘jobs summit’  —  Facing rising unemployment rates and having seen uncertain results from the stimulus bill, President Obama is hosting a “jobs summit” at the White House Thursday that will be packed with business leaders and economists supportive …
Mark Zuckerberg / Facebook Blog:
An Open Letter from Facebook Founder Mark Zuckerberg  —  It has been a great year for making the world more open and connected.  Thanks to your help, more than 350 million people around the world are using Facebook to share their lives online.  —  To make this possible …
Robin Givhan / Washington Post:
Rogers's unwanted new guest: Scrutiny  —  Social secretary's managerial style faces criticism in wake of her first state dinner  —  On the night of the Obamas' first state dinner, White House social secretary Desirée Rogers glided past the rope line of press and photographers at 6:53 p.m. …
Amanda Terkel / Think Progress:
Despite His Promise To ‘Applaud’ If Obama Deployed 30K More Troops, Rove Bashes Him For Being ‘Weak’  —  Yesterday morning, former Bush adviser Karl Rove went on NBC's Today Show and said that if President Obama decides to send 30,000-35,000 troops to Afghanistan, he would be “among the first to stand up and applaud.”
Josh Cohen / Google News Blog:
Google and paid content  —  As newspapers consider charging for access to their online content, some publishers have asked: Should we put up pay walls or keep our articles in Google News and Google Search?  In fact, they can do both - the two aren't mutually exclusive.
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Vidya Rao /
‘Family Ties’ mom: ‘I am a lesbian’
Nelson D. Schwartz / New York Times:
In Denmark, Ambitious Plan for Electric Cars
Mohamed Ahmed / Reuters:
Somali sea gangs lure investors at pirate lair
Lydia Saad / Gallup:
Americans See Protectionism, Tax Cuts as Ways to Create Jobs
Jane Hamsher / Firedoglake:
Announcing One Voice For Choice
 Earlier Items: 
Paul Caron / TaxProf Blog:
GOP Introduces Geithner Penalty Waiver Act
Discussion: RedState
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
McCain Unveils Time Travel Strategy for Financing Afghanistan War
Yuri Kageyama / Associated Press:
Sharp robots make flat-screen TV panels
Discussion: The Huffington Post
Christina Romer / Wall Street Journal:
Putting Americans Back to Work