I’m planning to live-blog the SOTU tonight (it begins at 9:00 EST), so will follow my usual Hard Day’s Night practice of knocking off regular blogging a bit early this afternoon. Here are some mid-day news bites of various sizes and flavors:

* Anonymous threatening to block all web-based livestreaming of SOTU.

* WaPo blogger falls for Daily Currant snark “reporting” Sarah Palin taking gig with Al Jazeera.

* Massachusetts GOPers finally get a Senate candidate: former Navy SEAL Gabriel Gomez.

* Labour opens up twelve-point lead over Tories–largest in a decade–in Guardian/ICM poll of UK.

* North Korean nuclear test widely viewed as showing defiance of China.

And in non-political news:

* Four Alabama football bench players arrested on robbery and credit card fraud charges; cynics suggest magical solution to team’s chronic oversigning problems.

Back after an actual lunch 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.