Between now and next Tuesday, I’ll be occasionally offering some year-end observations about where U.S. politics seems to be heading as we steam towards a midterm election. I’d like to think political analysis–not just news, and not just opinion–is what we do best here at PA; or certainly as well as an awful lot of low-content sites that give you 2000 words of CW once a week. If that’s something you like, please consider a tax-deductible donation to support smart political analysis as an island in a sea of hype.

Here are some remains of the day:

* If you’ve already donated to WaMo as much as you can, or have a big hole in your pocket, there’s another good work you can support without spending a dime: our good friend Blue Girl is asking for votes for the Midwest Music Foundation to trigger corporate donations for that fine group which provides health care for impecunious musicians. Here’s the link.

* Paul Ryan condescendingly attributes Pope Francis’ critiques of unregulated capitalism to the pontiff’s background in Peronist Argentina, where the blessings of laissez-faire capitalism are unknown. Guess that was Leo XIII’s problem, too: he lived prior to the Blessed Ayn Rand’s writings.

* At the Daily Beast, Sam Kleiner reminds us of the kind of sexist crap we’ll soon hear–because we heard it before–in Republican attacks on HRC.

* At Ten Miles Square, Mark Kleiman offers an implementation strategy for legalizing cannabis.

* At College Guide, Daniel Luzer weighs in on the debate about adjunct faculty at colleges.

And in non-political news:

* Delta Airlines accidentally offers insanely low fares on website this morning; it’s unfortunately been fixed.

That’s it for the day. Here’s one more song entitled “Boxing Day,” from The Pineapple Thief.

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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.