Today’s edition of quick hits:
* The more ambitious, the better: “The Obama administration has signaled to allies that it will take a more aggressive role this year in protecting homeowners from foreclosure, a posture that fits with Obama’s populist campaign stance.”
* Taking a stand: “Wikipedia, Reddit and Boing Boing are planning to black out their services Wednesday to protest the Stop Online Piracy Act and the Protect IP Act by showing users the bill’s effect on Web companies. These companies object to language in the bills, which are aimed at stopping online piracy on foreign Web sites, that grant the U.S. government the right to block entire Web sites with copyright-infringing content on them from the Internet. Wikipedia will block all of its English-language pages — the first time since the encyclopedia’s 2001 launch that it has ever restricted access to those pages as a form of protest.”
* For now, skipping a confirmation fight: “President Obama on Tuesday appointed Jeffrey Zients as acting director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Zients replaces Jack Lew, who is leaving his post as budget director to become White House chief of staff.”
* I’m delighted to see the A.G. leading on this issue: “Attorney General Eric Holder used Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy on the anniversary of the civil rights leader’s birthday Monday to emphasize the Obama administration’s dedication to protecting the American people from discriminatory voting practices.”
* Sensible financial reforms: “The largest banks must show how they would break up their assets if they were in danger of failing, under a rule approved Tuesday…. The FDIC also proposed a separate rule that would require banks with more than $10 billion in assets to conduct annual stress tests.”
* Marriage equality on the move: “The bill that would legalize same-sex marriage in Washington State is notable not just for the boldness of its ambition or for the fact that it was proposed by Gov. Christine Gregoire, a Democrat whose last memorable remarks on the issue placed her firmly in the not-yet camp. What is also striking is that some of the legislators sponsoring the measure can recall earlier debates — held years ago and sometimes only internally — in which they were certain they would oppose such a law.”
* Romney’s support for for-profit colleges warrants additional scrutiny.
* Steve M. makes the case that Rep. Allen West’s (R-Fla.) concerns about the “race card” are, at a minimum, ironic.
* Hoping to demonstrate to Bernie Goldberg that he knows the difference between Ice Cube and Ice-T, Bill O’Reilly insisted last night, “I’m a brother, man. You can’t be doing that to me.”
* And a Rick Santorum staffer actually believes that it would be wrong for a woman to serve as president because it’s against “God’s highest desire” and “his biblically expressed will.” It’s the 21st century. I just thought I’d mention.
Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.