Happy Birthday to Amy Heckeling,58 (perhaps; sources differ, so I'm assuming wikipedia is correct).
And the good stuff:
1. Steve Kornacki gets it: any candidate who wins a solid plurality of the vote will do just fine in the Electoral College. Once again: candidates, of course, must make decisions about scarce resources, but for the rest of us, if you just ignore the Electoral College until October you'll have a much better chance of understanding what's happening in the presidential election.
2. Jennifer Rubin and I agree on something. More or less. Gotta be worth a link, I suppose.
3. Thoughts on commenters,from Brad DeLong, Andrew Sullivan, and Julian Sanchez. I should add: I can't tell you how much I appreciate the quality regular commenters here...not just what they have to say substantively, which is often terrific, but the way they have helped socialize new folk. I'm still able to read every comment (here; not at the other places, although I do try to peak in a bit), and I enjoy it very much, even when I don't have the time to join in.
4. Greg Koger on that perennial puzzler -- whether building the Death Star makes sense. Good post, but I have the same caveat that I had last time this conversation came around. As far as we know, I believe, all inhabited planets are within the Empire. Moreover, the Emperor's goals, we believe, are power/domination, nothing else. Given those two things, it's not clear to me that maximizing economic growth would be at all important to the Emperor. So a little economic inefficiency, including destroying advanced planets, just doesn't seem like a big deal to me. It's all about whether it induces more or less effective rebellion.
5. And how Roman Emperors died. Nasty. Ranked by Josh Fruhlinger.