THE ECONOMIST BLOGS….Over at its new politics blog, the Economist, speaking of itself in the third person, summarizes its midterm election recommendations:

The Economist?s advice for the mid-term elections is this: throw the Republicans out. The Democrats may be ?incoherent?, it says, but they can scarcely do worse than the Republicans have done already. A few ?independent-minded? Republicans deserve to keep their seats, it says, but in general, ?sometimes ruling parties become so addled and incompetent that they need to be punished?.

This is, potentially, bad news for Democrats, since my sense is that the Economist has a pretty bad track record at endorsements. Sort of like the Sports Illustrated jinx. But I’ve never checked that out rigorously, and since I don’t read the magazine anymore I don’t know how they’ve done lately. Maybe their political antennae have gotten better recently. Or maybe I’m just wrong.

You may be thinking, by the way, that the reason I no longer read the Economist is because of their tiresome conservative tilt and increasingly formulaic writing ? a frequent subject of criticism in the liberal blogosphere. But that’s not it. Not mainly, anyway. The real reason is that several years ago they opened a new printing plant designed to make their American operations more efficient. It was based in California, I think, which seemed like good news for me.

Unfortunately, “seemed” is not “is.” What happened was that instead of receiving the magazine on Friday or, at the latest, Saturday, I began receiving it on Monday or Tuesday. Since it’s a weekly magazine that goes to press on Thursday, that made it hopelessly out of date by the time I got my copy, and since the weekend had passed it meant that I often didn’t get around to reading it at all. Eventually, I just gave up.

But now their content is online for free, and they have a couple of new blogs as well. The American politics blog is called Democracy in America and the economics blog is called Free Exchange. They’re both worth checking out.