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5:05 PM ET, January 28, 2011

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
James Cowie / Renesys Blog:
Egypt Leaves the Internet  —  Thanks to all for great comments and questions.  Please see below for latest updates on the ongoing Egyptian Internet blackout. —jim  —  Confirming what a few have reported this evening: in an action unprecedented in Internet history, the Egyptian government appears …
RELATED:
Guardian:
Egyptian government on last legs, says Mohamed ElBaradei  —  Exclusive: Mohamed ElBaradei says he is sending a message ‘to the Guardian and to the world’  —  The Egyptian dissident Mohamed ElBaradei warned President Hosni Mubarak today that his regime is on its last legs …
Guardian:
Egyptians defy tanks to make streets their own  —  • Officials say US is reviewing $1.5bn aid to Egypt  —  • Teargas and rubber bullets used in crackdown  —  • Read a full summary of the latest developments  —  9.33pm GMT: The speaker of Egypt's People's Assembly has told …
Michael Slackman / New York Times:
Egyptians' Fury Has Smoldered Beneath the Surface for Decades
Discussion: The Awl
Chris Good / The Atlantic Online:
Egypt's High-Powered D.C. Lobbying Ties
Discussion: The Nation and Ben Smith's Blog
Justin Elliott / Salon:
Who's doing Mubarak's bidding in Washington?
Discussion: Ben Smith's Blog and The Hill
Dan Murphy / Christian Science Monitor:
Joe Biden says Egypt's Mubarak no dictator, he shouldn't step down...
Nick Baumann / Mother Jones:
The House GOP's Plan to Redefine Rape  —  Drugged, raped, and pregnant?  Too bad.  Republicans are pushing to limit rape and incest cases eligible for government abortion funding.  —  Post Comment  —  Rape is only really rape if it involves force.  So says the new House Republican majority as it now moves to change abortion law.
RELATED:
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
THE ODIOUS GOP PLAN TO REDEFINE RAPE.... Last week, after a rather pointless vote to repeal the entirety of the Affordable Care Act, House Republicans announced their second major initiative: the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act.”  —  It was additional evidence that the new House GOP majority …
Jonathan Allen / The Politico:
Republicans terrified of tea  —  When Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann was named to the House Intelligence Committee earlier this year, one of her Republican colleagues responded this way: “Is that a punchline?”  Another simply said, “Jumbo shrimp.  Oxymoron.”  —  Neither dared to attach his name to his comment.
RELATED:
Kathleen Hennessey / Los Angeles Times:
‘Tea party’ gathering a tepid draw among senators
Discussion: Crooks and Liars and Mother Jones
Natasha Mozgovaya / Haaretz:
U.S. Democrats and pro-Israel lobbies slam Republican Senator's call …
USA Today:
TNT apologizes for Tracy Morgan's lewd comments on Palin  —  UPDATE: TNT sponsor AutoTrader.com is complaining to the network about being stuck in the middle, literally, of Tracy Morgan's lewd remarks about Sarah Palin on last night's edition of Inside the NBA.
RELATED:
Sarah Palin / Facebook:
On Sputnik vs. Spudnut  —  Please read this article by the Hoover Institution's Research Fellow Peter Schweizer.  Schweizer, who has written extensively on the subject of the decline and fall of the Soviet Union, offers a Washington Post writer an important refresher on the real history of Sputnik …
Discussion: USA Today and TPMDC
RELATED:
Peter Schweizer / Big Peace:
Sarah Palin Schools the Washington Post on History
Kevin Drum / Mother Jones:
Downgrading America  —  Karl Smith on the possibility that ratings agencies will downgrade U.S. debt from its current AAA rating: … I can't speak for Obama, but I have a feeling that the significance would be: zero.  Granted, there's symbolic importance to something like this …
RELATED:
Uri Friedman / The Atlantic Wire:
World Grows Jittery About American Debt
Discussion: The Atlantic Online
Lbentzterp / CNN:
Bush takes swing at former press secretary  —  Washington (CNN) - Former President George W. Bush is landing a stinging jab at his former longtime aide and press secretary, Scott McClellan, saying the man who served as the public face of his administration for three years was irrelevant.
Rick Maze / Air Force Times HOME:
Bachmann plan would cut veterans benefits  —  Tea party favorite Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., has unveiled a plan for cutting $400 billion in federal spending that includes freezing Veterans Affairs Department health care spending and cutting veterans' disability benefits.
Ezra Klein:
Too young not to work, too old to get a job  —  Pew's new report on long-term unemployment is sobering stuff: … The interplay between age and unemployment really worries me.  On some level, we have a rosy view of “structural unemployment”: It's a guy in Reno, Nev., who has skills better suited …
Rachel Rose Hartman / Yahoo! News:
Biden thinks The Onion's spoofs of him are ‘hilarious’  —  A mock photo of Vice President Joe Biden washing a Trans-Am shirtless.  Strange?  Distasteful?  Crossing the line?  —  Not so, Biden says.  —  “I think it's hilarious,” Biden told Yahoo! in a wide-ranging interview Thursday.
Associated Press:
Fla. rep failed to explain thousands in expenses  —  MIAMI (AP) — Freshman U.S. Rep. David Rivera, who is facing a state criminal investigation of his finances, paid himself more than $60,000 in unexplained campaign reimbursements over the eight years he served in the state legislature …
Discussion: The Hill and Taegan Goddard's …
Jason Millman / The Hill:
Some healthcare waiver requests denied even as HHS approves 500 others  —  While some 500 groups got waivers for a healthcare reform provision setting annual coverage requirements, about 50 requests for such exemptions were denied, the Department of Health and Human Services told The Hill Thursday.
Discussion: Michelle Malkin and protein wisdom
RELATED:
J. Lester Feder / The Politico:
HHS: Health care reform is already working
Suleiman al-Khalidi / Reuters:
Jordanian protesters demand political reforms  —  (Reuters) - Islamists, leftists and trade unionists gathered in central Amman Friday for the latest protest to demand political change and wider freedoms.  —  A crowd of at least 3,000 chanted: “We want change.”
Jonathan Martin / The Politico:
A big warning sign for Mitt Romney  —  An array of Republican heavyweights who backed Mitt Romney's 2008 presidential bid are not yet committed to - and in some cases, downright skeptical of - the former Massachusetts governor's all-but-certain 2012 campaign.
Jason Millman / The Hill:
Obama vigorously defends Dems' healthcare reform: ‘Granny is safe’  —  In his most vigorous defense of the healthcare law since Republicans took control of the House, Obama fired back Friday at GOP claims that the law deprives essential care for seniors and balloons the deficit.
Reuters:
FACTBOX-Deepwater rigs moved out of the Gulf of Mexico  —  Some of the 30-plus deepwater rigs that were in the Gulf of Mexico have moved to other markets, first because of a U.S. halt called last May after BP Plc's (BP.L: Quote) well blowout, and then because of the lack of permits once the moratorium was lifted.
Discussion: Hot Air and Pajamas Media
Elizabethe Holland / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Furor at Washington U. nixes Bristol Palin appearance  —  Anger over a decision to pay Bristol Palin several thousand dollars in student fees to talk to Washington University students about abstinence led to a decision Thursday night to nix Palin's appearance on a panel here next month.
Charles Krauthammer / Washington Post:
The old Obama in new clothing  —  The November election sent a clear message to Washington: less government, less debt, less spending.  President Obama certainly heard it, but judging from his State of the Union address, he doesn't believe a word of it.  The people say they want cuts?
 
 
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 More Items: 
Joe Hallett / DispatchPolitics:
Ex-speaker Gingrich takes time for Ohio
Discussion: Politics Daily and Ballot Box
New York Times:
Gates Says New Military Policy on Gays Can Start Soon
Discussion: The Hill, Federal Eye and FrumForum
Julianne Hing / Colorlines:
Birthright Citizenship Fight—From Ariz. to the Supreme Court?
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blog:
A careful briefing  —  Robert Gibbs, like all White House press …
Discussion: The Plum Line
Melanie Trottman / Washington Wire:
Union Card-Check Fight Escalates
David Harsanyi / Real Clear Politics:
Who Are We in This ‘Sputnik Moment’?
Discussion: alicublog
Kevin Drum / Mother Jones:
Obama's Sputnik Moment
Discussion: Yglesias and Outside the Beltway
 Earlier Items: 
Eric Alterman / American Prospect:
How Peretz Undermined Liberalism
Discussion: Balloon Juice and The Nation
James Fallows / The Atlantic Online:
How America Can Rise Again
Discussion: Ezra Klein
Kevin DuJan / American Thinker:
Sharks Are Not Misunderstood Dolphins, and Islam Is Not a Religion of Peace
Discussion: HillBuzz.org
Charles Lane / Washington Post:
Cold truths about electric cars' cold-weather shortcomings
Discussion: Right Turn and Betsy's Page