MONDAY’S MINI REPORT… I’m going to take a shot at this. Here’s today’s edition of quick hits:

* The market did not take kindly to the President’s plan for the auto industry, with the Dow dropping a little over 3%.

* Another terrorist strike in Pakistan, as militants dressed as policemen stormed a police academy and left at least 20 dead. Pakistani authorities blamed Taliban-aligned elements. These brazen attacks have occurred with increasing frequency in Pakistan in recent weeks.

* The White House released a report today called The Cost of Inaction, detailing the perilous state of the US health care system and the need to act immediately to control costs and provide maximum coverage. Some good facts and figures inside this document.

* Mitch McConnell keeps saying that Obama is turning America into France. Sacre bleu! Now McConnell is one person I wouldn’t mind to see “going Galt.”

* Nearly 7 in 10 major weapons-buying programs were over-budget in 2008. When the President talks about reining in the contracting process, this is what he’s talking about.

* DougJ caught this moment of clarity from Evan Thomas in his largely substance-free profile of Paul Krugman: “If you are of the establishment persuasion (and I am), reading Krugman makes you uneasy … Members of the ruling class have a vested interest in keeping things pretty much the way they are. Safeguarding the status quo, protecting traditional institutions, can be healthy and useful, stabilizing and reassuring. But sometimes, beneath the pleasant murmur and tinkle of cocktails, the old guard cannot hear the sound of ice cracking.” That’s a good thing to know about the establishment media. It should be in every single one of their stories as a boilerplate at the top.

* Is the current chair of the DNC, Virginia Governor Tim Kaine, really going to sign a ban on stem cell research funding in his state?

* One of the lawyers in the Spanish case against Bush Administration members, Gonzalo Boye, had a good retort to Douglas Feith’s complaining about the possible indictment: “I would recommend that Mr. Feith first of all read the complaint, and secondly that he get a very good lawyer … If he is so sure of what he is saying – then the address of the national court is #22 Genova Street, second floor.â€

* President Obama signed the omnibus lands bill today providing for 2 million more acres of protected wilderness.

* I do indeed hope that at the very least we can relax the travel ban with Cuba, as it serves no legitimate purpose for either nation. Neither does the embargo.

* Talks on reducing nuclear arsenals between the United States and Russia is also change I can believe in.

* Fox News launched a conservative Web site today called “Fox Nation”. I guess that they won’t be offering comments, since Andrew Breitbart explained today that Obama supporters have been unleashed on right-wing comment sections, forcing sites like Instapundit to close them retroactively years before Obama became President. This is something that John McCain would never pay supporters to do.

* And for those uninitiated to Twitter, and inclined to, well, hate it, you will find this cartoon amusing and educational.

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread. And thanks again to Steve for having me here these past few days; I hope he comes back refreshed and rarin’ to go. I would be remiss without mentioning the sites you can find me posting on a daily basis:

Hullabaloo with the incomparable Digby;
Calitics, a state progressive blog covering California;
and my own site, D-Day.


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