WEDNESDAY’S MINI-REPORT…. Today’s edition of quick hits:

* Ugh: “A late afternoon barrage of selling sent the Dow Jones industrials tumbling almost 700 points before the index pulled back to close down near 500. Weak corporate earnings stoked fears that the government’s financial intervention won’t keep global economies out of recession.”

* There was a scare at the New York Times today when an envelope was found containing a “white granular substance.” Authorities came in, ran some tests, and concluded that the substance was “non-hazardous.”

* On a related note, several Senate offices received bomb threats this afternoon. No suspicious packages have been found and none of the offices have been evacuated.

* McCain has now begun robo-texting anti-Obama smears to cell phones.

* Republican thugs continue to get physically abusive, this time in Missouri.

* On a related note, it’s hard to believe the threatening messages ACORN has received lately. The audio clips are nauseating.

* There’s still some lingering question as to whether Sarah Palin has to declare the $150,000 in clothes and accessories as “income.”

* For reasons that defy comprehension, marriage equality in California appears to be in real trouble. (thanks for the heads-up on this article, R.K.)

* Are Republicans responsible for fueling the nonsense about Obama being a secret Muslim? Steven Waldman explains why the GOP bears responsibility.

* And finally, a day in the life of an unpopular president: “Not once this year has President Bush appeared in public at a campaign rally for the Republican Party or any of its candidates. And on Tuesday night, when he attends a million dollar fund-raiser for the National Republican Senatorial Committee, it will be the last political event he does before Election Day.”

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.

Steve Benen

Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.