Happy Birthday to William Morgan Sheppard, 80.
The good stuff:
1. Alex Massie on Barack Obama as a Tory. A sensible argument, although I think it falls short of accounting for the activism of the Obama Administration, some of which has been disguised by the number of separate things packed into some large bills, especially the stimulus and the ACA. On the other hand, one might interpret a lot of that activism as the impulse of the historic 111th, and not the White House. But on yet another hand: are we talking outcomes here, or Barack Obama as a politician? If the latter, then what really matters are his true preferences, to the extent we can understand them, not what he actually could get through Congress.
2. Stan Collender has noticed that federal spending is very popular. Here's number four in a series.
3. Medicare: Jonathan Cohn.
4. John Sides on the state of the election, going into the conventions. And John and Lynn Vavreck's new book about the current cycle, The Gamble, is rolling out -- get the first chapters.
5. And Ta-Nehisi Coates on speaking for cash. Hey, I don't have an agent, but if anyone wants a discount speaker, sure, I'd be up for it. See also Dan Drezner.