As usual, I start with something that I don't think its necessary to read. This time, however, I'm going to broaden it...I really don't see much of any reason to read anything by Andrew McCarthy. Frankly, I don't think I'd mind him so much if his name was Joe Smith...I know its petty and irrational, but the world already has one perfectly good Andrew McCarthy, and there's no way that this imposter is ever going to produce anything to rival the classics that Andrew McCarthy I was involved in, so that's it. Besides, this faux Andrew McCarthy is just a fourth-rate partisan hack -- see this latest takedown by Conor Friedersdorf.
OK, for the good stuff.
1. I'm puzzled why top journalist and brother David S. Bernstein's NTU reporting hasn't attracted more attention: he notes that this supposedly anti-tax organization scored the stimulus as a tax increase, even though it was in fact a tax cut. Hey, David -- you buried your lead! (I'm not a reporter, so I spell it that way).
2. Always with the health care. Ezra Klein interviewed Kent Conrad about reconciliation, and Andrew Romano has a good summary of it. This Chris Bowers post has been linked to quite a bit, but it's good, and it gives me another chance to compliment Bowers, who proves that you can be pretty far towards one or the other ideological extreme but still be reality-based.
3. I hope this isn't self-indulgent, but some of my posts over at the Dish received interesting responses that you might not have seen. I recommend William DiPini on politicians keeping their promises, and NotAbbott on my Neustadtian point that presidents seeking power create good policy. OK, I'll admit it -- that last one, while a fine post worth reading, is really just a lame excuse to get people to look at what I had to say on the subject (and yes, I know that in addition to being self-indulgent, it's also way silly for me to be pointing to something I did over at the, er, somewhat more visible location, but I'm doing it anyway).
4. Kevin Drum passes along a great story about knowing stuff and governing, featuring Kissinger and Ellsberg.
5. Screwing with TNC's blog was a crime against humanity, as far as I'm concerned, but all's well that ends well. Read him. Really -- if you want to know about the United States of America, read him. Plus, now you have the fun of figuring out how they sort his stuff for the new labels (hint: it's all, as far as I can tell, politics, culture, and personal).
6. OK, round-up, various topics. Mark Schmidt brings the facts on Rahm. Nicole Allan evaluates the cash value of the Sage of Wasilla. I don't think I've linked to this member of the Jonathan club -- Rauch -- before, but he's excellent, and his GOP/George Wallace piece is worth reading. Conor Friedersdorf has been busy knocking down stupid arguments from torture apologists and other disgraces. Matthew Alexander takes apart Marc Thiessen's book. And here's Fred Kaplan on the nuclear posture review.
7. And you'll enjoy bird-watching with Neil Sinhababu.