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A few tidbits from the news and around the blogosphere that should not go unnoticed:

Juan Cole has a summary of the top ten myths about Iraq. It’s a great review of the facts on the ground, and a lot of the complex issues at play in our continued presence in that country. Great insight, as always.

Regarding the NSA spy-a-thon, Reuters has more reporting on the FISA court and its upsurge of problems with Bush Administration warrant requests. Hmmmm…until around 2003, the FISA court was essentially a rubber stamp. What changed? (A) Was it a change in the law, tightening what the court would or would not allow? Or (B) was the Bush Administration pushing the envelope of probable cause so far that even judges who wanted to help them out couldn’t stomach what they were being asked to rubber stamp? I’m going with B. Especially given that the court likely wouldn’t accept probable cause based on information gleaned from, say, torture or rendition.

Sydney Schanberg has more on the NSA issues in the Village Voice. For some FISA background, check out this website from EPIC.

And a fantastic op-ed on the whole issue of Presidential power grabs and the Constitution that I somehow missed. But it is so good, I knew you’d want to read it, so here you go.

Sure, the Republicans support veterans. Well, except for helping to pay for their mental health needs coming back from fighting in our wars. In that case, it’s all about cutting costs.

Anna Nicole Smith and the White House are, apparently, in bed together. Get yer minds out of the gutter. I mean in the figurative sense — the WH will be filing a brief on behalf of and arguing for (if allowed) Smith’s position in her appeal before the Supreme Court. Strange times…

YellowDogBlog calls for a Separation of Church and Food. After seeing the "nun bun," I have to say, Amen.

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Christy Hardin Smith

Christy Hardin Smith

Christy is a "recovering" attorney, who earned her undergraduate degree at Smith College, in American Studies and Government, concentrating in American Foreign Policy. She then went on to graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania in the field of political science and international relations/security studies, before attending law school at the College of Law at West Virginia University, where she was Associate Editor of the Law Review. Christy was a partner in her own firm for several years, where she practiced in a number of areas including criminal defense, child abuse and neglect representation, domestic law, civil litigation, and she was an attorney for a small municipality, before switching hats to become a state prosecutor. Christy has extensive trial experience, and has worked for years both in and out of the court system to improve the lives of at risk children.

Email: reddhedd AT firedoglake DOT com