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6:30 PM ET, March 16, 2014


 Top Items: 
Daily Mail:
Doomed airliner pilot was political fanatic: Hours before taking control of flight MH370 he attended trial of jailed opposition leader as FBI reveal passengers could be at a secret location  —  Police are investigating the possibility that the pilot of missing Flight MH370 hijacked his own aircraft in a bizarre political protest.
New York Times:
Pilot Spoke to Air Controllers After Shutoff of Data System  —  SEPANG, Malaysia — A signaling system was disabled on the missing Malaysia Airlines jet before a pilot spoke to Malaysian air traffic control without hinting at any trouble, a senior Malaysian official said Sunday …
Real news, real entertainment . . . in real time  —  MH370 picture exclusive: Pilot wears anti-government slogan t-shirt amid fears he hijacked missing jet
Robert Mendick / Telegraph:
Malaysia Airline MH370: 9/11-style terror allegations resurface in case of lost plane
Associated Press:
Crimeans overwhelmingly vote for secession  —  SIMFEROPOL, Ukraine (AP) — Fireworks exploded and Russian flags fluttered above jubilant crowds Sunday after residents in Crimea voted overwhelmingly to secede from Ukraine and join Russia.  The United States and Europe condemned the ballot …
Discussion: neo-neocon and Mashable
Burgess Everett / Politico:
U.S. rejects Crimea vote as invalid
Discussion: CNN
Crimeans Choose to Join Russia in Vote, Exit Poll Shows
Discussion: Power Line and Bloomberg View
Yahoo! News:
Crimea holds referendum to split from Ukraine
Washington Post:
Crimeans begin voting on Russia referendum
New York Times:
Obama Factor Adds to Fears of Democrats  —  WASHINGTON — Democrats are becoming increasingly alarmed about their midterm election fortunes amid President Obama's sinking approval ratings, a loss in a special House election in Florida last week, and millions of dollars spent by Republican-aligned groups attacking the new health law.
Maureen Dowd / New York Times:
Dems in Distress  —  WASHINGTON — Scott Brown, the Republican …
Alexandra Jaffe / The Hill:   Scott Brown fires up Senate fight
Scott Johnson / Power Line:
Maureen Dowd finds the lightning bug
Discussion: Althouse
Hemant Mehta / Friendly Atheist:
Fred Phelps, Founder of the ‘God Hates Fags’ Westboro Baptist Church, is on the ‘Edge of Death’  —  You know Fred Phelps.  You loathe Fred Phelps.  You despise everything he stands for, like his family members' infamous protests at soldiers' funerals with their awful “God Hates Fags” signs.
Carole Cadwalladr / Guardian:
Scarlett Johansson interview: ‘I would way rather not have middle ground’  —  The star talks to Carole Cadwalladr about playing an alien in Under the Skin - Jonathan Glazer's low-budget sci-fi film set in Glasgow - and her role in the recent SodaStream controversy
Discussion: Israpundit and Israel Matzav
Ross Douthat / New York Times:
The Age of Individualism  —  IN the future, it seems, there will be only one “ism” — Individualism — and its rule will never end.  As for religion, it shall decline; as for marriage, it shall be postponed; as for ideologies, they shall be rejected; as for patriotism, it shall be abandoned; as for strangers, they shall be distrusted.
Caitlin MacNeal / Talking Points Memo:
RNC Chair On Paul Ryan's Remarks: Dems Always Waiting To ‘Pounce’ (VIDEO)  —  This post has been updated.  —  Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus on Sunday addressed the controversy over Rep. Paul Ryan's (R-WI) remarks about a “culture problem” in inner cities of men not wanting to work.
Discussion: Hinterland Gazette and Hullabaloo
Jonathan Topaz / Politico:
RNC chair: Obamacare ‘main target’
Discussion: CNN and DNC Rapid Response
Michael Hiltzik / Los Angeles Times:
Abby Huntsman wants to lead her own generation into poverty  —  Abby Huntsman on Social Security: New generation, same old lies.  —  Abby Huntsman is really, really upset about Social Security.  We know this because the television presenter, a daughter of former GOP Presidential contender Jon Huntsman …
Discussion: The Huffington Post
Andrew Cuomo / CNN:
CNN Poll: Rand Paul goes where his father never went  —  Washington (CNN) - Rand Paul has done something his father never did - top the list of potential Republican presidential candidates in a national poll.  —  According to a new CNN/ORC International survey, 16% of Republicans and independents …
Discussion: Politico, OnPolitics and Scared Monkeys
Laura Hancock / Casper Star-Tribune:
‘The Death Sentence of AIDS:’ Newly minted Wyoming lawmaker stands by controversial book  —  Wyoming's newest legislator stands by a book he wrote nearly 30 years ago that claims many gay people demand the right to have sex with children and people with AIDS should be quarantined if they continue having sex.
Discussion: Booman Tribune and The Raw Story
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 More Items: 
Andrew O'Hehir / Salon:
How did Irish-Americans get so disgusting?
Discussion: and NewsBusters
Caitlin MacNeal / Talking Points Memo:
McCain Compares Russia To A Gas Station
Inside Politics: The Political Forecast: More Democrats to retire this week
Discussion: RedState
Associated Press:
Karzai says Afghanistan doesn't need U.S. troops to stay past end of year
 Earlier Items: 
Christopher Clark / Spiegel Online:
What History Teaches Us About the Ukraine Crisis
Discussion: Outside the Beltway
Tyler Cowen / Associated Press:
Crimea Through a Game-Theory Lens
American Prospect:
Piketty's Triumph  —  Three expert takes on Capital in the Twenty …