Friday’s Mini-Report

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

* Oh my: “A NATO jet blasted two fuel tankers hijacked by the Taliban in northern Afghanistan, setting off a huge fireball Friday that killed up to 90 people, Afghan officials said.” NATO plans to investigate the tragedy.

* Not good: “Israeli officials said Friday that the government would authorize construction of hundreds of new housing units in West Bank settlements in advance of a building freeze of six to nine months aimed at restarting peace talks with the Palestinians. The announcement prompted a sharp rebuke from the White House and the Palestinian leadership.”

* In a surprise move, International Brotherhood of Teamsters leader James Hoffa said he wants a health care reform bill, but would be satisfied if there was no public option.

* Why do you suppose huge rallies in support of health care reform go unreported?

* August retail numbers offered “a glimmer of hope.”

* Looks like Van Jones probably won’t be around for the long-haul.

* The president’s team is not looking at U.S. policy in Afghanistan the same way. There are apparently some pretty stark divisions among leading administration officials.

* House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-S.C.) wants to see his colleagues be flexible on the public option. Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.), meanwhile, is apparently ready to kill reform over the public option.

* Tim Geithner’s vision for regulating the financial industry looks pretty good.

* How desperate is Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R) to impress the right-wing base in advance of his presidential campaign? He’s willing to say some remarkably stupid things.

* MSNBC yanked Pat Buchanan’s Hitler defense from its site yesterday. No word on whether the column will affect his role as a political pundit for the network.

* Legislation to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act looks like it’s coming soon.

* If a Friday went by without a Steve M. post about Peggy Noonan’s column, I’d be pretty disappointed.

* The AP ran a photo of a Marine attacked in Afghanistan. The Pentagon isn’t pleased.

* Rush Limbaugh’s fill-in host today raised the prospect of secession.

* I remember a time — it was called “the entire Bush presidency” — when Nazi comparisons were considered beyond the pale and evidence of a deranged political ideology.

* James K. Glassman, best known for his silly “Dow 36,000” book, will lead George W. Bush’s “action-oriented think tank.” Seems like a perfect match.

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.

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