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8:40 AM ET, December 27, 2009


 Top Items: 
Investigators: Northwest Bomb Plot Planned by al Qaeda in Yemen  —  Officials Say Bomb Materials Sewn Into Suspect's Underwear by Top Terror Bomb Maker  —  The plot to blow up an American passenger jet over Detroit was organized and launched by al Qaeda leaders in Yemen who apparently sewed bomb materials …
Officials: Only A Failed Detonator Saved Northwest Flight  —  Screening Machines May Need to Be Replaced; Al Qaeda Aware of ‘Achilles heel’  —  Officials now say tragedy was only averted on Northwest flight 253 because a makeshift detonator failed to work properly.
Ed Morrissey / Hot Air:
Investigators: Terrorist wore suicide underwear made by top AQ bombmaker in Yemen  —  In the war on terror, we've seen suicide vests and suicide belts.  We've even seen suicide rucksacks.  Now, the top Yemeni bombmaker for al-Qaeda has the latest in fashion for radical jihadists looking …
Jenni Russell / Times of London:
Airline bomber was barred from Britain  —  David Leppard, Chris Gourlay and Times Online  —  The son of a prominent Nigerian banker, who allegedly attempted to blow up a transatlantic flight over America, was barred from returning to Britain earlier this year.
Discussion: Pajamas Media and The Daily Dish
Josh Gerstein / The Politico:
Xmas bomb bid complicates Gitmo plan  —  “I'd expect Yemen's handling of returned Guantanamo detainees to come under intense U.S. scrutiny,” said Matthew Waxman, a Columbia law professor who was an assistant Defense secretary for detainee affairs under President George W. Bush.
Discussion: Power Line
New York Times:
Restrictions Rise After Terrorism Attempt  —  Transportation authorities began imposing tighter security measures at airports on Saturday and ordered new restrictions governing the activities of passengers during flights as investigators conducted searches to learn more about the Nigerian …
Mark Steyn / The Corner on National Review Online:
Let's Roll 2 — By: Mark Steyn  —  On September 11th 2001, the government's (1970s) security procedures all failed, and the only good news of the day came from self-reliant citizens (on Flight 93) using their own wits and a willingness to act.  —  On December 25th 2009, the government's …
James Joyner / Outside The Beltway:
TSA Making Flying More Miserable
Discussion: Israel Matzav and
Samuel Goldsmith / NY Daily News:
Father of Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab, Nigerian terror suspect …
Associated Press:
Airline passengers see tighter security
Discussion: AmSpecBlog
Fox News:   Official: U.S. Knew for 2 Years Suspect Could Have Terror Ties
Gordon Ginsberg / Firedoglake:
Why The President's Inability to Lead Highlights the Value of FDL's Reachout to “Strange Bedfellows”  —  The times call for a leader of Churchillian or Rooseveltian magnitude; what we have instead is a cautious risk-averse manager.  Bold progressives must fill the leadership vacuum in order …
Steve Marmel / The Huffington Post:
Vacation's Over, Mr. President.  —  What is wrong with this picture?  —  It's December 23rd - I lug my tired butt to the airport, ready to leave for vacation.  Carrying a bottle of very nice wine, I have to leave my place in the security line as I can't bring it as a carry-on, check it in a bag …
Discussion: Outside The Beltway
Paul Krugman:
Numerical notes on health care reform  —  A couple of notes to address complaints about the Senate bill from the left and the center.  (There's no use addressing complaints from the right; in general, the safest thing when dealing with crazy people is to avoid eye contact.)
Discussion: Matthew Yglesias
Ezra Klein:
How the filibuster increases cynicism: An interview with Andy Stern  —  Andy Stern is president of the Service Employees International Union.  —  You've recently begun talking about the problem of the Senate when you talk about the problems facing health-care reform.
James Hamilton / Econbrowser:
Lost decade for stocks  —  Why were the aughts so nasty for stocks?  —  The U.S. ended the decade more or less where it began in terms of total employment.  —  Source: FRED.  —  The owners of capital fared no better, with the nominal S&P500 stock price index down 20% for the decade.
Discussion: Greg Mankiw's Blog
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 More Items: 
Eric Schmitt / New York Times:
Elite U.S. Force Expanding Hunt in Afghanistan
Wall Street Journal:
‘He Just Does What He Thinks Is Right’
Sam Roberts / New York Times:
For First Time, Minority Vote Was a Majority
Orville Buddo / The Caucus:
Poli-Books Best-Seller List
 Earlier Items: 
James Freeman / Wall Street Journal:
The World's District Attorney
Discussion: Commentary and Emptywheel
Jordan Fabian / The Hill:
White House: Obama will continue to ‘actively monitor’ airline attack probe
Discussion: The Politico and ABCNEWS
Ross Douthat / New York Times:
The Obama Way  —  Every presidency is the subject of competing caricatures.
Discussion: TPMCafe and marbury