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7:55 PM ET, March 16, 2011


 Top Items: 
New York Times:
U.S. Calls Radiation ‘Extremely High’ and Urges Deeper Caution in Japan  —  WASHINGTON — The chairman of the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission gave a significantly bleaker appraisal of the threat posed by Japan's nuclear crisis than the Japanese government, saying on Wednesday …
Martha Raddatz / ABCNEWS:
U.S. Officials Alarmed By Japanese Handling of Nuclear Crisis  —  U.S. Officials Fear Fukushima Could Become ‘Deadly For Decades’  —  U.S. officials are alarmed at how the Japanese are handling the escalating nuclear reactor crisis and fear that if they do not get control of the plants within …
Discussion: Salon, Wall Street Journal and Mediaite
Associated Press:
NRC: No Water In Spent Fuel Pool Of Japan Plant  —  The chief of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission said Wednesday that all the water is gone from one of the spent fuel pools at Japan's most troubled nuclear plant, but Japanese officials denied it.  —  If NRC Chairman Gregory Jaczko is correct …
Japan earthquake: Japan warned over nuclear plants, WikiLeaks cables show  —  Japan was warned more than two years ago by the international nuclear watchdog that its nuclear power plants were not capable of withstanding powerful earthquakes, leaked diplomatic cables reveal.
Nuclear Crisis: Rising Radiation Halts Work
Matthew L. Wald / Green:
House Panel Questions Nuclear Regulatory and Energy Chiefs
Gschwarzcnn / CNN:
Clinton says no to second term  —  (CNN) - Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told CNN's Wolf Blitzer she does not want to serve a second term as secretary of state or run for president of the United States.  —  Blitzer sat down with the former 2008 presidential candidate in Cairo.  —  Full transcript:
Jamison Foser / Media Matters for America:
The Washington Post 's Liberal-Bashing, Pro-Torture “Left-Leaning” Columnist  —  As I've frequently pointed out, the fact that columnist Richard Cohen is what passes for a “liberal” at the Washington Post pretty thoroughly undermines the idea that the paper's opinion pages lean to the left.
Washington Post:
Sarah Palin losing more ground among Republicans, Post-ABC poll finds  —  Virginia Postic/ AP - According to a new poll, fewer than six in 10 Republicans and GOP-leaning independents see former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, shown here in December, in a favorable light.
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Voters tepid toward Obama, but favor him over GOP
Discussion: GOP 12 and Derek Wallbank
Andrew Sullivan / The Daily Dish:
Palin's Base Shrinks But Intensifies
The Politico:
Some in GOP grow tired of right wing  —  Some veteran Republican House members are pushing back against conservative deficit hawks who are pushing for endlessly deep spending cuts, saying the right wing of the party is creating unnecessary divisions for the GOP majority.
Washington Examiner:
Democrats rope-a-doping Republicans on spending
Discussion: The Other McCain
Jeremy W. Peters / Media Decoder:
Four New York Times Journalists Are Missing in Libya  —  6:19 p.m. |  Updated The New York Times said Wednesday that four of its journalists reporting on the conflict in Libya were missing.  —  Editors said they were last in contact with the journalists, who were reporting from the northern port city …
Fhardingj / CNN:
President main attraction at fourth party event this month  —  Washington (CNN) - President Barack Obama headlines a Democratic party event Wednesday night, the second time this week and fourth time this month he's been the main attraction at a party gathering.
Discussion: Weasel Zippers
Myglesias / Yglesias:
Stuff White People Like: Republicans  —  A good series of charts by Lee Drutman shows that one of the best predictors of declining Democratic partisan ID between 2008 and 2010 is the number of white people:  —  I used to hold to the view that the growing non-white share of the electorate would, over time, tip elections to Democrats.
Kevin Gray / Reuters:
Angry voters oust Miami-Dade mayor in special vote  —  (Reuters) - Voters in Miami-Dade, one of the most populous U.S. counties, removed Mayor Carlos Alvarez from office in a special vote on Tuesday triggered by popular anger over a hike in property taxes.  —  With 707 of 829 precincts reporting …
Discussion: Right Wing News and Denver Post
Jodie Tillman / St. Petersburg Times:
‘Sagging pants’ bill passes House committee  —  Seems the best way to sell legislation these days is that it'll be good for the economy.  That's how Rep. Hazelle Rogers (D-Lauderhill) pitched her so-called “sagging pants” bill to members of the House's K-20 education innovation subcommittee today.
Richard Rubin / Bloomberg:
Abortion Foes in Congress Run Into Tax Obstacle in Attempt to Curb Funding  —  House Republicans' efforts to limit government funding for abortion are colliding with their emphasis on tax cuts, underscoring potential conflicts between the party's social and fiscal agendas.
Kasie Hunt / The Politico:
Cut Pentagon's budget, reduce Afghan forces  —  DAVENPORT, Iowa — America should slash defense spending — and consider shrinking its presence in Afghanistan, Haley Barbour said Monday night.  —  Barbour, a likely candidate for president in 2012, told Iowa county leaders and activists …
First Read /
First Thoughts: The wildcard  —  Like Gulf oil spill and Greece …
Discussion: The Daily Caller
Los Angeles Times:
Reel China: Hollywood tries to stay on China's good side  —  Without Beijing even uttering a critical word, MGM is changing the villains in its ‘Red Dawn’ remake from Chinese to North Korean.  It's all about maintaining access to the Asian superpower's lucrative box office.
Pete Kasperowicz / The Hill:
Petraeus accused of ‘Charlie Sheen strategy’ on Afghanistan war  —  Rep. Lynn Woolsey (D-Calif.) on Wednesday sharply criticized David Petraeus, the commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, and signaled agreement with an assessment from a Rolling Stone editor who likened the commander's performance to that of Charlie Sheen.
Discussion: FishbowlDC, Hot Air, RedState and BLACKFIVE
Josh Dorner / ThinkProgress:
Newt Gingrich Secretly Funneled $350,000 To Anti-Gay Hate Groups Last Year  —  Last year, former Speaker Newt Gingrich offered his vocal support for the ultimately successful campaign to oust three of the nine Iowa Supreme Court justices who had unanimously ruled in favor of marriage equality.
Myglesias / Yglesias:
Motivating Density  —  Phoenix is largely a stereotypical sunbelt “no there there” sprawling auto-oriented city.  But it does feature a smallish, but very nice, walkable urban downtown core.  And it also has a new light rail line, with more lines to come.  These developments are …
Discussion: Eschaton
Andrew Blankstein / L.A. NOW:
National Lampoon chief arrested in alleged $200-million Ponzi scheme  —  The chief executive officer of National Lampoon Inc., the comedy brand behind “Animal House” and the “Vacation” movie franchise, was arrested early Wednesday in West Hollywood in connection with an alleged $200-million Ponzi scheme, federal authorities said.
Discussion: The Daily Caller
Ryan / The Bellows:
More New York  —  Kevin Drum has an email conversation with someone who thinks I've got this all wrong.  I think he or she has mostly missed my point.  Let's take this a bit at a time. … The first point to make is that New York isn't just attractive because of the way it was built.
Michael Calderone / Washington Post:
Washington Post apologizes for plagiarized articles  —  The Washington Post apologized Wednesday for publishing two articles in March that “contained substantial material that was borrowed and duplicated, without attribution, from The Arizona Republic newspaper.”
Quinnipiac University:
Mayor's Approval Rating At Lowest Point In 8 Years, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Bloomberg's Time Off Is Nobody's Business, Voters Say  —  New York City voters disapprove 51 - 39 percent of the job Mayor Michael Bloomberg is doing, his lowest score since a 51 - 37 percent disapproval November 23 …
The Politico:
GOP 2012: Return of the neo-cons  —  When George W. Bush left office in 2009, liberal Democrats and a fair number of moderate, traditional Republicans proclaimed the good news: the GOP neo-cons were dead, chased from Washington in disgrace.  —  But as Republican presidential hopefuls begin …
Discussion: FrumForum
What The Frack: Ohio Gov. John Kasich Wants To Open Up State Parks For Oil And Gas Exploration  —  At the behest of then-Vice President Dick Cheney, an exemption was inserted into a 2005 energy bill — dubbed the “Haliburton loophole” — which stripped the EPA of its power to regulate …
Michael Crowley / Swampland:
House Ag Committee: Cut Food Stamps, not Farm Aid  —  There has long been rare left-right agreement in Washington that multi-billion dollar federal farm subsidies are generally wasteful, mostly benefit agribusinesses, and should be slashed or eliminated.  You'd think this would represent low-hanging fruit …
Max Boot / Wall Street Journal:
It's Not Too Late to Save Libya  —  Defense Secretary Robert Gates has acted as if imposing a no-fly zone would be a military operation on the order of D-Day.  In reality, it wouldn't be hard to ground Gadhafi's decrepit air force.  —  I have not been one of those castigating President Obama …
Discussion: New Atlanticist and The Daily Dish
7 Arrested After Disrupting Senate Committee Hearing  —  NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Seven union supporters were arrested and charged following an outburst inside a Senate Committee Hearing.  —  Troopers at the Tennessee Capitol had to forcibly carry out the protestors who were among a group who stood …
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 More Items: 
Jonathan Chait / The New Republic:
Adventures In Context From The Weekly Standard
Shirin Sadeghi / The Huffington Post:
The Fabrication of Bahrain's Shiite-Sunni Divide
Discussion: The Daily Dish
Shira Toeplitz / The Politico:
Committee to consider ‘In God We Trust’
Discussion: ACS Blog
An Important Starting Point—with One Gap
Discussion: Yglesias, Paul Krugman and Guardian
 Earlier Items:
Massive online pedophile ring busted by cops
Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
DEA seizes Georgia's supply of lethal injection drug
Discussion: TalkLeft and This Just In
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Brown looking better for reelection
Wall Street Journal:
The Fight Against Government Flab Is Personal for These Politicians
Discussion: The Note, CNN and Hotline On Call