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

* China earthquake kills at least 589 people.

* More green shoots: “Retail sales rose for the third straight month in March as better weather and auto incentives brought out shoppers in force. The rise was more than economists had expected. It’s the latest sign that consumer spending is rising fast enough to support a modest economic recovery.”

* U.S. forces leave Afghanistan’s Korengal Valley.

* Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) eyes derivatives, which is an issue of increasing significance to Democrats in both chambers.

* Democratic Senate centrists aren’t in any hurry to tackle immigration reform.

* Absolutely fantastic piece from University of Chicago law professor Geoffrey Stone on conservatives, liberals, and judicial philosophy.

* Don’t buy the nonsense that 47% of American households owe no taxes.

* I’m still amazed that someone of Jon Kyl’s limited skills, knowledge, intellect, and awareness of current events can rise to be the #2 Republican in the U.S. Senate.

* John McCain gives new meaning to the phrase “trigger happy.”

* Hmm: “California’s attorney general on Tuesday launched a probe into the finances of a state university foundation and the alleged dumping of documents related to Sarah Palin’s upcoming speech at the school.”

* The House’s two most ridiculous members agree to share a right-wing press secretary to push their deranged arguments.

* George Shultz, Reagan’s Secretary of State, rejects GOP talking points and praises President Obama’s nuclear strategy.

* Former half-term Gov. Sarah Palin (R) thinks the White House’s agenda is “un-American.” What a pathetic clown.

* Ted Frier draws an interesting parallel between Wall Street and the Titanic … which was also too big to fail.

* More evidence that the recession is leading students to community colleges.

* It seems Breitbart is making a habit of releasing deceptive videos.

* I had a chance to work with Alex Koppelman a bit at Salon and I’ve long considered him an astute observer and class act. Best wishes to him in his new endeavors.

* Similarly, I’m sorry to see Jonathan Cohn close up The Treatment, which I found invaluable throughout the debate over health care reform.

* President Obama held a news conference late yesterday as the nuclear summit came to a close. Fox News interrupted its coverage to air Glenn Beck’s show. Amazing.

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.