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

* For a change, auto sales were encouraging in August. Ford, Honda, and Hyundai had a good month, while GM and Chrysler fared far less well.

* America’s manufacturing sector grew last month for the first time in 19 months. President Obama called it “a sign that we’re on the path to economic recovery.”

* National Security Advisor and retired Gen. Jim Jones believes President Obama is having greater success taking terrorists out of commission than former President Bush did. Interesting report from ABC’s Jake Tapper.

* It’s a little complicated, but the reconciliation process makes it more likely, not less, that health care reform will have a robust public option.

* The AFL-CIO expects a public option. So does John Conyers.

* The other Sen. Nelson (Bill of Florida) is down on the public option and says it doesn’t have the votes.

* How low have the Tea Baggers’ gone? They’ve even willing to hook up with Howard Kaloogian. Wow, that’s low.

* It’s surprising to see Alberto Gonzales endorse Eric Holder’s new CIA-related investigation.

* Liz Cheney sure does lie a lot. In fact, when she’s not lying about one area of public policy, she’s lying about another.

* Did Texas execute an innocent man? David Grann considers the case of Cameron Todd Willingham.

* That awful Washington Post profile of the National Organization for Marriage’s Brian Brown was even worse than originally thought.

* In light of Ted Kennedy’s passing, might conservatives show him some respect? Apparently not.

* CNN’s Lou Dobbs hasn’t been making as many headlines lately, but he’s planning to be involved in a very disturbing event in about two weeks, which will be even more offensive than his usual broadcasts.

* On his radio show today, Glenn Beck decided to “get all Jesus” on his audience, and warned of a “Satan”-like “perversion” of the United States.

* George Will wants to see the United States withdraw from Afghanistan.

* Rest assured, House Democrats have not banned patriotic Muzak, though you may hear otherwise.

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.