This morning a good, if sad, reminder of the power of external events. If anyone saw this coming, he or she is truly clairvoyant.

Here are some mid-day news item that include and transcend the day’s big story:

* BuzzFeed’s Ben Smith has devastating roundup of reactions to Mitt’s press conference today from foreign policy hands representing both parties.

* Sarah Posner questions the identity of the alleged director/producer of the anti-Muslim video that fanned latest series of protests.

* Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson on ballot in 47 states–all but PA, MI and OK.

* Gallup daily tracking poll has Obama job approval at 51%. Latest weekly summary shows approval at 45% among indies.

* Census reports number of Americans without health insurance declined by 1.4 million in 2011.

And in non-political news:

* Notre Dame joins ACC in all sports other than football.

Back after a brief break.

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Ed Kilgore is a political columnist for New York and managing editor at the Democratic Strategist website. He was a contributing writer at the Washington Monthly from January 2012 until November 2015, and was the principal contributor to the Political Animal blog.