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

* Just a reminder, the Monthly‘s annual pledge drive is underway. We sincerely appreciate those of you who’ve already shown generous support, and hope other readers will take a moment to help out.

* European debt crisis: “Fears among European bondholders spread Tuesday from the weakest members of the euro zone to other countries, including Italy and Belgium, spurring a stepped-up search for a solution to a crisis that is increasingly putting political as well as financial strain on Europe’s decade-old monetary union.”

* It’s pretty much impossible to feel optimistic about the global climate talks underway this week in Cancun.

* This almost certainly won’t work, but I give Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) credit for trying: “Senate Democratic leaders will try to push through a one-year extension of federal unemployment benefits sometime Tuesday, although they are still expected to lapse at the end of the day, sources told The Hill.”

* Comcast inadvertently helps make the case for net neutrality, as Senate Democrats push the FCC to act.

* It’s good to see a boost in U.S. consumer confidence.

* Republicans and health insurance companies made all kinds of dire predictions about Medicare Advantage earlier this year. Republicans and health insurance companies were wrong.

* Did Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) suggest New START might yet get a vote during the lame-duck session? It sounded like it.

* Fred Kaplan argues that the revelations from the WikiLeaks documents actually make the Obama administration’s foreign policy efforts look pretty good.

* Good: “An Oklahoma constitutional amendment aimed at stopping the use of Islamic law in its courts was dealt a serious blow on Monday when a federal judge temporarily blocked the state from putting it into effect.”

* Pigford II is on its way to the president’s desk. It’s about time.

* The DNC’s Organizing for America actually encouraged its members to write letter in support of a pay freeze for federal workers. I have no idea what the OFA is thinking.

* I’m starting to think Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) is pretty racist.

* Idiotic conservatives will probably learn one of these days that CNN’s Anderson Cooper isn’t afraid to ask good questions on the air.

* Classes at community colleges aren’t as open as they used to be.

* Adam Serwer flags a gem from a special operations soldier, quoted in the Pentagon’s DADT report: “We have a gay guy [in the unit]. He’s big, he’s mean, and he kills lots of bad guys. No one cared that he was gay.” Republicans think we’d be safer if the military kicked that guy out. I continue to think that’s insane.

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.