Monday, October 18, 2010

WHILE AMERICA WAS SLEEPING, I fixed a 'news breakfast' for you -- ready each weekday morning at 6am Eastern to satisfy your media craving [feature permalink here]. These must-reads will help you kick start the day:


The Dem's Brutal Weekend: "More bad polls. More bad fundraising numbers. More dreary talk on the Sunday shows." (Politico)
New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo attends a news conference in New York, June 30, 2010. Cuomo and the New York City Police Department (NYPD) announced the dismantling of a sophisticated international luxury-vehicle theft ring that is believed to have stolen hundreds of vehicles in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, which were often shipped to Senegal, according to an NYPD press release. Cuomo is the Democratic Party nominee for Governor of New York. REUTERS/Mike Segar  (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS CRIME LAW TRANSPORT)

Despite Anger at Albany, Cuomo Still Leading: "A New York Times poll found that Mr. Cuomo had opened a big lead over Carl P. Paladino, drawing 59 percent of likely voters, to his Republican rival’s 24 percent. . . . Mr. Cuomo’s popularity appears to be fueled in part by widespread doubts about Mr. Paladino’s temperament and qualifications." (NY Times)

The Big Debate, This Evening: "The potential for shock, revelation and self-immolation are all high: the cast includes not only Mr. Cuomo, the attorney general, and Mr. Paladino, a Buffalo real estate developer, but also a convicted former madam, a Black Panther turned left-wing city councilman, and a self-described actor, rent activist, karate expert and private investigator. “We could end up with Andy Warhol meets Salvador Dalí,” said Bruce N. Gyory, a Democratic political consultant who is not involved with any of the campaigns. " (NY Times)

Bring Back 2008! "Everybody said 'No, you can't' and in 2008 you showed them, 'Yes, we can,'" Obama told a cheering crowd of 35,000 people at Ohio State University in Columbus. (Reuters)

Miller Security Guards Handcuff Journalist: "The editor of the Alaska Dispatch website was arrested by U.S. Senate candidate Joe Miller's private security guards Sunday as the editor attempted to interview Miller at the end of a public event in an Anchorage school." (Anchorage Daily News)

Rove's Rove: "[Carl] Forti has played a critical role in shaping the ad campaigns of two of the biggest-spending outside groups – American Crossroads and Crossroads Grassroots Policy Strategies (or Crossroads GPS, for short), which Rove and veteran operative Ed Gillespie helped create this year – and Forti also is a consultant to two other outside groups that have emerged as top spenders this year: the 60 Plus Association and Americans for Job Security." (Politico) -- Dem's Ads Not Accurate: "Research supplied by shows that Democrats in 16 districts have run at least 31 ads blasting Republicans for supporting the tax. But many of these ads neglect to mention the levy is essentially a national sales tax that would replace the current federal tax system." (The Hill)

Obama To Appear On Discovery Channel's 'Mythbusters': "In the episode, Archimedes Solar Ray, Obama challenges hosts Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman to prove the ancient Greek myth that scientist and polymath Archimedes set fire to an invading Roman fleet using only mirrors and the reflected rays of the sun? I wonder if he is planning to use the knowledge against the GOP fleet that is threatening the Democratic majority in the upcoming November elections." (


U.S. Presses China Over Iran: "The Obama administration has concluded that Chinese firms are helping Iran to improve its missile technology and develop nuclear weapons, and has asked China to stop such activity, a senior U.S. official said." (WaPo)

Pentagon braces for Iraq Wikileaks: "The documents are thought to concern battle activity, Iraqi security forces and civilian casualties. Colonel Dave Lapan, a Pentagon spokesman, said the timing of the leak remained unclear but are preparing for it to be as early as Monday or Tuesday - a possibility raised in previous WikiLeaks statements." (Al Jazeera)

No Love for Fed Workers: "More than half of Americans say they think that federal workers are overpaid for the work they do, and more than a third think they are less qualified than those working in the private sector, according to a Washington Post poll." (WaPo)
389495 01: (FILE PHOTO) Chandra Ann Levy of Modesto, CA poses in this undated file photo. Levy vanished April 30, 2001 after completing a federal internship in Washington, DC. Cogressman Gary Condit (D-CA), said to have had an affair with missing intern Chandra Levy, will speak about the case for the first time publicly August 23, 2001 in a televised interview with ABC''s Connie Chung. (Photo by Getty Images)

Nine Years Later, the Chandra Levy Murder Trial Begins Today: "It was the quintessential Washington story. An ambitious college student flies across the country to intern in the nation's capital, a city innocent of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks that would happen four months later. With dreams of success, she works hard. She also has an affair with her married hometown congressman. The tale turns tragic. " (WaPo)

Arizona City vs Arizona State: "A small city in Arizona has joined the U.S. Justice Department's suit against the state's immigration law. Tolleson, outside Phoenix, has filed an amicus brief in the Justice lawsuit, which will go to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Nov. 1, The Arizona Republic reported Sunday." (UPI)


Emerging Markets Face Uncertainty: "The Federal Reserve's latest effort to juice the U.S. economy is making many investors in emerging-market and commodity-producing nations confident the rally has longer to run. Others see trouble ahead, concerned too many investors are jumping into the rally and that these markets can't keep rising if the U.S. economy stays sluggish." (WSJ)

Calif. Cities Going Lowbrow to Raise Cash: "Financially struggling municipalities that once shunned such businesses as casinos, tattoo parlors and certain big-box retailers are considering easing rules to plug budget gaps." (LA Times)

Oil Falls Below $81 on U.S. Economy Doubts: "U.S. crude for November fell 74 cents to $80.51 by 0841 GMT, extending last week's drop of 1.7 percent. It touched $80.30 on October 8, the lowest price since the beginning of the month, after reaching a five-month high of $84.43 a day earlier. December ICE Brent fell 72 cents to $81.73." (Reuters)

020114-N-8242C-005 During a Sensitive Site Exploitation (SSE) mission in the Zhawar Kili area of Eastern Afghanistan U.S. Navy SEALs (SEa, Air, Land) found valuable intelligence information, including this Osama Bin Laden propaganda poster located in an al-Qaeda terrorist classroom. In addition to detaining several suspected Al Qaeda and Taliban members, SEALs also found a large cache of munitions in numerous caves and above-ground structures. The SEALs and Navy Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) personnel destroyed more than 70 caves and 60 structures by using on-ground explosives and air strikes. Navy special operations forces are conducting missions in Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Credit photo to Official U.S. Navy photo. FOR THIS PHOTO DO NOTCREDIT PHOTOGRAPHER. (Released)

Bin Laden in NW Pakistan: "Osama bin Laden and his deputy Ayman al-Zawahiri are believed to be hiding close to each other in houses in northwest Pakistan, but are not together, a senior NATO official said. 'Nobody in al Qaeda is living in a cave,' said the official, who declined to be named because of the sensitivity of the intelligence matters involved. Rather, al Qaeda's top leadership is believed to be living in relative comfort, protected by locals and some members of the Pakistani intelligence services, the official said." (CNN)

al-Qaeda Returning to Afghanistan for New Attacks: "Several dozen al-Qaida operatives have left their bases in Pakistan and taken up new positions in eastern Afghanistan's Kunar and Nuristan provinces, remote regions which lie along the porous border between the two countries, according to senior officials with the International Security Assistance Force here. The influx of al-Qaida fighters into Afghanistan, which hasn't previously been reported, could trigger fresh attacks on coalition and Afghan targets and hamper the intensifying push to strike peace deals with moderate elements of the Taliban." (National Journal)

France Warned: "France has been warned by Saudi Arabia of a genuine threat to Europe from al-Qaeda, the country's interior minister has said." (Sky News)

Success in Kandahar: A major military operation involving hundreds of American troops, U.S. Special Forces and heavy bombers dropping 2,000-pound bombs on Taliban command and control centers wrapped up last week, concluding a critical phase in the campaign to oust the Taliban from Afghanistan’s southern Kandahar province. But no journalists were there to witness the operation." (GlobalPost)

Iran Brokering New Iraqi Government? "The Guardian can reveal that the Islamic republic was instrumental in forming an alliance between Iraq's Nouri al-Maliki, who is vying for a second term as prime minister, and the country's powerful radical Shia cleric leader, Moqtada al-Sadr. The deal – which involved Syria, Lebanon's Hezbollah and the highest authorities in Shia Islam – positions Maliki as a frontrunner to return as leader despite a seven-month stalemate between Iraq's feuding political blocs." (Guardian)

Moving Up the Dictatorship's Job Ladder: "Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping has been promoted to vice chairman of a key Communist Party military committee, state media reported Monday, in the clearest sign yet he is on track to be the country's future leader."

East Asia Tension Increases: "Japan's prime minister on Monday urged China to ensure the safety of Japanese citizens and firms and called for calm after Chinese protesters took to the streets over a territorial feud straining ties between Asia's top economies." (Reuters)

Iran Sends Another Dangerous Shia Terror Commander Back to Iraq: "Another Shia terror commander who takes orders from Iran has recently returned to Iraq, heightening fears that the violence in the quiet Iraqi south may spike." (Bill Roggio @ Long War Journal)

The Miner Sure Knows How to Drill: "The married Don Juan of the trapped Chilean miners dug himself into a deeper hole when it was revealed that he had not one, but two mistresses." (NY Daily News)

VRWC Beware: "A crowd angry about a program they deemed insulting to some members of Kuwait's ruling family stormed a Kuwaiti private television station on Sunday, ransacking its offices, station officials said." (Al Arabiya)

Super typhoon lashes Philippines: "An intense "super typhoon" has made landfall in the northern Philippines, lashing the area with heavy rains and winds of more than 225km/h (140mph)." (BBC)

Tech, Science

Whether You Wanted or Not, You May Have Been Sharing TMI on Facebook: "Many of the most popular applications, or "apps," on the social-networking site Facebook Inc. have been transmitting identifying information—in effect, providing access to people's names and, in some cases, their friends' names—to dozens of advertising and Internet tracking companies, a Wall Street Journal investigation has found. The issue affects tens of millions of Facebook app users, including people who set their profiles to Facebook's strictest privacy settings. The practice breaks Facebook's rules, and renews questions about its ability to keep identifiable information about its users' activities secure." (WSJ)

ESPN to Multicast on Web: "With the move, ESPN gives Time Warner Cable subscribers online access to its channels at no additional cost. ESPN is backing the cable industry’s push to extend programs to the Web and combat the loss of viewers to companies such as Netflix Inc. As the network shifts to “TV Everywhere,” will make fewer videos available to users of its services who don’t subscribe to Time Warner Cable." (Bloomberg)

The Next Pearl Harbor: "Terrorist cyber attacks on government computer systems and businesses could be “the next Pearl Harbor”, the head of Britain’s Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC) has warned." (Daily Telegraph)