I am off to witness the wedding of this young gentleman today, so I’m shutting down ye blog. I may have a couple more items tomorrow depending on events. If not, have a great New Year and we’ll see you in 2012.

• Three major rulings came down in California yesterday: one where the State Supreme Court will dissolve local 400 redevelopment agencies as part of a transformation of state and local government, one which bars the state from cutting Medicaid reimbursement rates and one which blocks the state’s low-carbon fuel standard under AB 32, the global warming law.

• Charlie Savage submits the same survey on Presidential candidates and executive power that he did in 2007, and finds, unsurprisingly, that Republicans have very expansive views on the subject. Until Congress asserts itself, we’re going to see consistently expansive executive power aggrandizement. President Obama, incidentally, didn’t bother to return back the survey.

• Corporations will benefit this year from a massive tax break on stock options they gave out to their CEOs.

• Newt Gingrich was actually ahead in the Southern states of South Carolina and Florida over the past several weeks, but now he’s falling in Florida into a dead heat with Mitt Romney. Gingrich got incinerated on Iowa TV with negative ads, and there’s no reason to believe that won’t happen elsewhere.

• House Republicans will still force a meaningless vote on a resolution of disapproval for the next tranche of debt limit increase, when they return in January.

• If I had to guess, Romney will barely clear the bar in Iowa, with Santorum surging into a tie with Ron Paul or second place by himself. At which point the story will be Santorum instead of Romney. And I do think Bachmann drops out after a sixth-place showing.

• Just try to charge $2 for online bill pay, Verizon. Although it’s really $1.56, since you save the stamp with online payments.

• This new immigration hotline for detainees sounds like a good idea. But when will the deportation reviews wrap up?

Occupy the Rose Parade will get a legitimate opportunity to protest and voice their message after the floats go by. The crowd in the stands will not be released until after the protest ends.

• North Korea announced that they will embark on no changes in policy under the rule of Kim Jong-un.

• Jim White has more on the US drone wars and the collateral damage from them.

• More big protests in Syria today, perhaps the largest ever, as activists try in vain to get the attention of the Arab League monitors. The Free Syria Army of defectors also announced a stand-down in their operations while the monitors observed the country.

• The OCC foreclosure reviews are a sham, as if you needed a further reminder.

• Guy made a surprisingly good-looking film using a Nokia cell phone.