Today’s edition of quick hits:

* Europe: “Worried that Europe’s debt impasse posed a growing threat to the global economy, the world’s major central banks moved Thursday to assure investors that European banks would not run short of American dollars, as they nearly did at the height of the 2008 financial crisis. The banks, in a coordinated action intended to restore market confidence, agreed to pump dollars into the European banking system in the first such show of force in more than a year.”

* U.S. jobs crisis: “New applications for unemployment compensation climbed 11,000 last week to 428,000, the Labor Department said Thursday. Initial claims from two weeks ago were revised up to 417,000 from an original reading of 414,000.”

* A well-deserved honor: “President Barack Obama on Thursday bestowed the nation’s highest military honor on Dakota Meyer, a young and humble Marine who defied orders and barreled straight into a ferocious ‘killing zone’ in Afghanistan to save 36 lives at extraordinary risk to himself.”

* Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) brought a measure to the Senate floor today, demanding cuts to foreign aid to pay for FEMA disaster relief funding. It failed, 78 to 20, but that means one-fifth of the Senate thought this idea had merit.

* Not exactly helping European banks: “A rogue trader for the Swiss bank UBS was arrested in London on Thursday, authorities said, and is suspected of causing an estimated $2 billion loss in unauthorized trades.”

* Reasonable doubts: “Hundreds of thousands of people are rallying behind Georgia death row inmate Troy Davis — not just because they oppose capital punishment but because they believe the state could put an innocent man to death. The case is fraught with drama: The murder of an off-duty police officer. Conflicting eyewitness testimony. Last-minute court decisions sparing a condemned man’s life and global dignitaries who say they fear an innocent man could die.”

* Democrats on the Murray/Hensarling super-committee are at least discussing Sen. Jeff Merkley’s (D-Ore.) idea, which would evaluate the panel’s ideas based on their impact on unemployment., meanwhile, is on board with the proposal. (Kudos to my friend Greg Sargent for his excellent work on this story.)

* A good call: “A federal judge on Wednesday blocked enforcement of a first-in-the-nation law that restricted what Florida physicians can say about guns to their patients, ruling the law violates the U.S. Constitution’s free speech guarantees and does not trample gun rights.”

* Losing the future: “The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s annual report on education across the world came out recently. America continues to lose ground.”

* It’s frustrating when prominent lefties, who should clearly know better, make racially-dumb comments about the president.

* A terrific, five-minute video explaining what tobacco company propaganda and climate deniers’ propaganda have in common.

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.