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2:50 AM ET, March 16, 2014


 Top Items: 
New York Times:
Plane Deliberately Diverted, Malaysia Says  —  SEPANG, Malaysia — Prime Minister Najib Razak of Malaysia announced on Saturday afternoon that Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 left its planned route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing as the result of deliberate action by someone aboard.
Chico Harlan / Washington Post:
Missing airliner may have flown on for 7 hours  —  KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak said Saturday that a missing passenger jet was steered off course after its communications systems were intentionally disabled and could have potentially flown for seven additional hours.
Maureen Dowd / New York Times:
Dems in Distress  —  WASHINGTON — Scott Brown, the Republican who admitted he wore pink leather shorts on his first date with his wife-to-be, is back.  —  And Democrats are scared to death.  —  It's not that Democrats are particularly scared that the 54-year-old former Massachusetts senator …
Discussion: Power Line
Dana Milbank / Washington Post:
Why millennials have abandoned Obama  —  The day before the Iowa caucuses in 2008, I wrote about the massive crowds of young people at Barack Obama rallies, noting that his candidacy would collapse “if they don't show up.”  —  The next night, after Obama's victory celebration in Des Moines …
Peter Schroeder / The Hill:
Durbin, McCain: Send weapons to Ukraine  —  A pair of senators, including a close ally to President Obama, is calling on the White House to send arms to Ukraine.  —  Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), currently visiting Ukraine, said the U.S. should supply …
Cathleen Decker / Los Angeles Times:
In old memo, a glimpse of conflict ahead for Hillary Clinton?  —  Bill and Hillary Rodham Clinton in January at the swearing-in of New York Mayor Bill de Blasio.  Newly released Clinton White House documents may signal conflict ahead as Hillary Clinton considers her own presidential run.
Oliver Bullough / The New Republic:
Sleepless in Simferopol  —  No one knows what Putin will do after Sunday's election.  The fear is familiar to Crimea's Tatars.  —  SIMFEROPOL, CRIMEA — No one has any idea what President Vladimir Putin will do after Crimea votes on Sunday to join Russia.
Kerry Picket / BREITBART.COM:
TED CRUZ POSTERS APPEAR IN BEVERLY HILLS  —  Mysterious posters of Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) with his face photoshopped onto a tattooed body were plastered around various locations in Los Angeles, like the Beverly Hilton Hotel, late Thursday night.  —  The title above the image of the Texas Republican gives a March 15 date.
Tom Kertscher / PolitiFact:
In Context: Were Paul Ryan's poverty comments a ‘thinly veiled racial attack’?  —  The backlash to comments U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan made about poverty and inner-city residents suggested that the former vice-presidential candidate had been bigoted.  —  U.S. Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Calif. …
Discussion: Booman Tribune
Ian Haney López / Politico:   Is Paul Ryan Racist?
Jeremy W. Peters / New York Times:
Senate Balks at Obama Pick for Surgeon General  —  WASHINGTON — Facing a possible defeat in the Senate, the White House is considering delaying a vote on President Obama's choice for surgeon general or withdrawing the nomination altogether, an acknowledgment of its fraying relationship with Senate Democrats.
Bari Weiss / Wall Street Journal:
Thank You for Smoking—Marijuana  —  Justin Hartfield, the founder, on his plans to legalize the drug nationwide and become the Philip Morris of pot.  —  Justin Hartfield is high.  —  “I've been high since I'm 13,” the 30-year old marijuana entrepreneur says as he sips …
Washington Post:
Tensions mount as Crimea prepares for referendum  —  KIEV, Ukraine — Russia's military staged a provocative new act of aggression on Saturday, occupying a gas-pumping station and village on a narrow strip of Ukrainian land near the Crimean Peninsula and prompting Kiev's Ministry of Foreign Affairs …
Discussion: Washington Monthly and The Week
Fox News:
Charges unlikely for Houston dad accused of shooting daughter's boyfriend, prosecutor says  —  The Houston father who police say fatally shot a 17-year-old boy who was inside his daughter's bedroom early Thursday morning will likely not be charged, an area prosecutor told
Randy Wallace / MyFoxHouston:
55-year-old father allegedly mistakes 16-year-old daughter's boyfriend for intruder, shoots and kills him
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 More Items: 
Nafeez Ahmed / Guardian:
Nasa-funded study: industrial civilisation headed for ‘irreversible collapse’?
Discussion: Vox Popoli
Heidi Hall / USA Today:
Judge recognizes gay marriages of 3 Tennessee couples
 Earlier Items: 
Jackson Lears / The New Republic:
What Washington-focused liberals miss about Progressivism
Discussion: Washington Monthly
George F. Will / Washington Post:
Democrats are making income inequality worse
Agence France-Presse:
Russia says intercepted US drone over Crimea: arms group
Discussion: RIA Novosti and The Agonist
Charlie Cook /
You Don't Need a Weatherman  —  What the seasonal and cyclical forces …