I did some southeastern drive-time conservative radio this morning to promote The Book, and it went reasonably well until time ran out when I was not only in mid-thought but in mid-sentence. It has thrown off my timing today, but I’ve more or less recovered.

Here are some Monday midday news/views snacky snackies:

* Justice Department to review and also become a bit more transparent about surveillance of phone calls.

* Surprise, surprise: Fiorina launches presidential campaign with attack on Hillary Clinton.

* So now America’s got its very own frightening act of violence in response to depictions of the Prophet Muhammad.

* At TNR Danny Vinik notes Ben Carson’s made the flat tax as much of a signature issue as his militant rhetoric about Obamacare.

* At the Atlantic, David Graham views Carson and Fiorina from the POV of traditional minimum qualifications for a presidential candidacy, and finds them rather wanting.

And in non-political news:

* Reviewing Mayweather/Pacquiao in terms of the incredible pre-fight hype.

As we break for lunch, here’s James Brown on Soul Train again, this time in 1968, with his influential anthem: “Say It Loud (I’m Black and I’m Proud).

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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.