As an indication of how cloistered I am here at my blogging station, it wasn’t until today that I realized a major wildfire has been blazing just down the Pacific Coast Highway in Big Sur. Yeah, I noticed it was real hazy yesterday, but we get that a lot. Fortunately, the fire appears to be slowly getting under control.

If you want to help me get out more, you could make a tax-deductible donation to WaMo and maybe I’ll be able to be less monkish.

* TNR’s Laura Bennett has a gossipilicious evaluation of Bloomberg View. It’s a bit light in its documentation of BV’s small influence, but still entertaining.

* TAP’s Paul Waldman really doesn’t like Mark Liebovich’s vast profile of John McCain at the New York Times Magazine.

* With excellent timing, presidentially-appointed panel recommends new restrictions on NSA surveillance.

* At Ten Miles Square, Mark Kleiman excoriates tendency–present among Democrats as well as Republicans–to nickel-and-dime federal employees and then freak out when they fail at an important task.

* At College Guide, Robert Kelchen follows yesterday’s list of big higher ed stories with a list of not-so-big developments that got plenty of hype.

And in non-political news:

* News you probably can’t use, but interesting: what lottery winners have to do to harvest riches.

That’s all for today. I’ll be traveling back to Georgia late tomorrow, but should be able to get a good day’s blogging in. Let’s close with a relatively obscure bit of Ry Cooder history: “Get Away,” from the sound track for the 1970 Mick Jagger vehicle Performance. Some of you may recall I’ve posted “Memo From Turner” from this movie, with some wicked slide guitar from Cooder, but this one is good, too.

YouTube video


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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.