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

* Libya: “Fighters loyal to Libyan leader Moammar Gaddafi sought to maintain their grip on the capital, Tripoli, on Wednesday, as a growing popular uprising spread across the eastern part of the country and anti-government forces consolidated control over key Mediterranean cities.”

* Oil prices: “Oil prices hit $100 per barrel for the first time since 2008, driven by growing concerns about global supplies, as Libya’s Moammar Gadhafi continued to lose his grip on the oil-rich country. Similar uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt earlier this month already had markets on edge before protests escalated in Libya, which has the biggest oil reserves in Africa.”

* Purple Hearts: “President Barack Obama awarded six Purple Hearts while visiting with wounded service members on Wednesday. The commander in chief met with 22 patients and their families during a midday visit to the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Md., just outside of Washington, the White House said. Twenty-one served in Afghanistan; the other served in Iraq.”

* A closer look at the Wisconsin budget: “The state’s entire budget shortfall for this year — the reason that Walker has said he must push through immediate cuts — would be covered by the governor’s relatively uncontroversial proposal to restructure the state’s debt. By contrast, the proposals that have kicked up a firestorm, especially his call to curtail the collective-bargaining rights of the state’s public-employees, wouldn’t save any money this year.”

* On a related note, Gov. Scott Walker (R) insisted the other day that he “campaigned on” his union-busting proposals, adding, “Anybody who says they are shocked on this has been asleep for the past two years.” He’s lying.

* The Indiana Deputy Attorney General who said he wanted to see “live ammunition” used on protesters in Wisconsin? He’s been fired.

* Sens. Kerry, Franken, Cantwell, and Wyden haven’t forgotten: “Four Senate Democrats wrote to Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on Wednesday to oppose GOP efforts to defund net neutrality rules through spending legislation.”

* Fox News gets Gallup data exactly backwards, badly misleading viewers. Is the network incompetent or dishonest?

* I knew Americans paid less for gas than other countries, but I didn’t appreciate how much less.

* The director of MassHealth — the state-run Medicaid plan that insures nearly 1.3 million Massachusetts residents — seems to think consumers would be better off with single payer. Something to keep an eye on.

* Once more, targeting those who get in the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s way.

* Interesting: “A new study shows that, beyond increased voting, going to college really has no impact on engagement in the political process.”

* Terry Jeffrey expresses a sentiment that’s more common than some might expect among far-right activists: “It is time to drive public schools out of business.”

* And on a personal note, today is, for lack of a better word, my “Blogoversary” — I started blogging exactly eight years ago today. (My very first post in 2003 — I kid you not — was complaining about the guest list on “Meet the Press.” I guess some things never change.) It’s hard to believe I’ve given more than a fourth fifth of my life to do this non-traditional profession, but I continue to enjoy the work. Whether you’ve been reading for eight days or eight years, my most sincere thanks for the support.

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.

Our ideas can save democracy... But we need your help! Donate Now!

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.