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1:10 PM ET, May 11, 2010

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
David Brooks / New York Times:
What It Takes  —  About a decade ago, one began to notice a profusion of Organization Kids at elite college campuses.  These were bright students who had been formed by the meritocratic system placed in front of them.  They had great grades, perfect teacher recommendations …
RELATED:
Peter Baker / New York Times:
News Analysis: Kagan Nomination Leaves Longing on the Left  —  WASHINGTON — The selection of Solicitor General Elena Kagan to be the nation's 112th justice extends a quarter-century pattern in which Republican presidents generally install strong conservatives on the Supreme Court …
Robert C. Clark / Wall Street Journal:
Kagan and the Military: What Really Happened  —  As dean, she upheld a policy already in place.  —  With the announcement of Elena Kagan as nominee for the open seat on the Supreme Court, comments both sound and foolish are sure to flood the media.  In the prior category is the observation …
Scott Lemieux / American Prospect:
Is Kennedy Easily Manipulated?  —  One important component of the liberal case for Elena Kagan seems to be that she could exert a strong influence on the Court's median vote, Anthony Kennedy.  Here's Jeffrey Rosen: … And half-seriously, Jonathan Zasloff:
Eugene Volokh / The Volokh Conspiracy:
Elena Kagan as Scholar  —  As scholar, Elena Kagan worked in two main fields, First Amendment law and (more or less) administrative law.  Since the first of those fields is one in which I also work, I decided to reread those articles, and — since some people have raised questions …
David Bernstein / The Volokh Conspiracy:
Isn't This a Bit Much?  —  The president went to Harvard, and barely defeated a primary opponent who went to Yale.  His predecessor went to Yale and Harvard, and defeated opponents who went to Yale and Harvard, and Harvard, respectively.  The previous two presidents also went to Yale …
Michael D. Shear / Washington Post:
Abortion could be sleeper issue in Supreme Court confirmation process
Discussion: The Monkey Cage
Elijah Sweete / The Moderate Voice:   Sex And The Supremes - Kagan Is Sixth “Maybe Gay” Nominee
Brad Thor / Big Government:
EXCLUSIVE: Mullah Omar Captured!  —  Through key intelligence sources in Afghanistan and Pakistan, I have just learned that reclusive Taliban leader and top Osama bin Laden ally, Mullah Omar has been taken into custody.  —  According to the State Department's Rewards for Justice Program …
RELATED:
Marc A. Thiessen / Washington Post:
U.S. may be passing up chances to stop terrorist plots  —  Did a captured Taliban leader know about the Times Square plot and withhold this information from his interrogators?  —  On Sunday, Obama administration officials, including counterterrorism chief John Brennan …
Dennis Cauchon / USA Today:
Tax bills in 2009 at lowest level since 1950  —  Amid complaints about high taxes and calls for a smaller government, Americans paid their lowest level of taxes last year since Harry Truman's presidency, a USA TODAY analysis of federal data found.  —  Some conservative political movements such as the …
Charlie Savage / New York Times:
Obama Said to Be Open to New Miranda Look  —  WASHINGTON — David Axelrod, the top White House political adviser, said Monday that President Obama was amenable to Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr.'s call for a new law allowing interrogators to question terrorism suspects for lengthy periods without informing them of their rights.
RELATED:
Jon Ward / The Daily Caller:
Top Obama advisers Jarrett and Axelrod given car privileges …
Discussion: Hot Air and BLACKFIVE
Ben Evans / Associated Press:
DeMint: A conservative kingmaker upends GOP order  —  WASHINGTON — Jim DeMint is becoming something of a tea party hero, even a potential conservative kingmaker, a status that is not making the freshman senator many friends among fellow Republicans in Congress.
RELATED:
Roger Alford / Associated Press:
Paul may not vote for McConnell as floor leader
This Is London:
Gordon Brown quits as PM as Lib-Dem deal falls apart  —  Gordon Brown is set to resign tonight and allow David Cameron to be Britain's new Prime Minister.  —  The Labour leader's final desperate attempt to cling on to power with a Lib-Lab deal crumbled amid a rebellion on his own side …
Hilary Andersson / BBC:
‘Secret prison’ at US air base  —  The US airbase at Bagram in Afghanistan contains a facility for detainees that is distinct from its main prison, the Red Cross has confirmed to the BBC.  —  Nine former prisoners have told the BBC that they were held in a separate building, and subjected to abuse.
Discussion: The Huffington Post
Jim Oliphant / The Swamp:
VP Biden's son Beau hospitalized  —  Vice President Joe Biden's son, Beau, has been hospitalized for reasons that have yet not been made public.  —  A terse statement released Tuesday morning by the vice-president's office said Beau Biden, Delaware's attorney general “is at Christiana Medical Center undergoing treatment at present.
Michael O'Brien / The Hill:
Obama drug plan ‘firmly opposes’ legalization as California vote looms  —  The Obama administration said Tuesday that it “firmly opposes” the legalization of any illicit drugs as California voters head to the polls to consider legalizing marijuana this fall.
Discussion: CNN and The Washington Independent
RELATED:
Sam Hananel / Associated Press:
New drug control strategy signals policy shift
BBC:
Pope pins scandal on Church ‘sin’  —  Pope Benedict XVI has warned that the greatest threat to the Catholic Church comes from “sin within”, rather than persecution from outside.  —  He made his comments in response to a question on the clerical child abuse scandal, while en route to Portugal.
Discussion: Shakesville
RELATED:
Rachel Donadio / New York Times:
Pope Issues Most Direct Words to Date on Abuse
Discussion: Wonkette and The Stranger …
CNN:
Bill Clinton lends a hand on wife's debt  —  Former President Clinton is helping Sec. of State Hillary Clinton retire her remaining 2008 presidential campaign.  —  Washington (CNN) - If you supported Secretary of State Hillary Clinton during her 2008 presidential run, chances are you received …
Discussion: Ben Smith's Blog and The Note
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Marshall, Cunningham closing on Burr  —  Elaine Marshall and Cal Cunningham have both gained ground on Richard Burr after building up their exposure during the Democratic primary campaign.  Burr is now in a weaker position than Elizabeth Dole was at the same point in the election cycle two years ago.
Discussion: Taegan Goddard's … and TPMDC
Wall Street Journal:
Did Big Bet Trigger Stock Swoon?  —  Shortly after 2:15 p.m. Eastern time last Thursday, hedge fund Universa Investments LP placed a big bet in the Chicago options trading pits that stocks would continue their sharp declines.  —  On any other day, this $7.5 million trade for 50,000 options contracts might …
Colin Woodard / Christian Science Monitor:
'Tea party'-backed platform sails through Maine GOP convention  —  Maine is known for GOP moderates, but over the weekend, conservative activists succeeded in passing a platform that's backed by tea party groups.  —  Conservative activists backed by “tea party” groups have rejected …
Discussion: RedState and Portland Press-Herald
 
 
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 More Items: 
Nicholas Confessore / New York Times:
New York Legislature Approves State Furloughs
Discussion: Open Left and City Room
Mike Mandel / Mandel on Innovation and Growth:
A Bad Business Cycle for the Creative Economy
John Temple / Honolulu Civil Beat:
Civil Beat Poll: Djou On Way To May 22 Victory
Peter Maer / CBS News:
White House Task Force Seeks Fight on Childhood Obesity
Discussion: protein wisdom and Michelle Malkin
CNN:
Oil execs to brief Senate panels on spill
Discussion: The Politico and This Just In
Walter Alarkon / The Hill:
Democrats poised to move measures with high price tags
The Corner on National Review Online:
California Carly — By: NRO Staff
Discussion: AmSpecBlog
Byron York / Washington Examiner:
No winners in boycott of Ariz. immigration law
Discussion: JammieWearingFool
 Earlier Items: 
Alex Isenstadt / The Politico:
Incumbent watch: Who's next to go?
Discussion: Taylor Marsh and Reuters
New York Times:
Drone Strikes Pound West Pakistan
Discussion: Wonk Room and Weasel Zippers
CNN:
Medical marijuana stores firebombed in Montana
Maggie Haberman / The Politico:
Fossella mulls bid for former seat
Discussion: TPMDC, msnbc.com and The Eye
Sergei L. Loiko / Los Angeles Times:
U.S. troops march in Moscow in salute to Allies' role in WWII
Sam Hananel / Associated Press:
Rule change favors unions at airlines, railroads
Allahpundit / Hot Air:
New McCain ad: You cannot be serious