Happy Birthday to Idris Elba, 40. Hoping to get to Luther sometime in the next few months.
I'd get to it quicker if there wasn't so much good stuff:
1. Ezra Klein on Bill Clinton: The "Wonk-in-Chief." I have to say: a fair amount of Clinton's speech sounded as if he's been reading the liberal policy bloggers -- Ezra Klein, Matt Yglesias, Harold Pollack, Paul Krugman, Stan Collender, Kevin Drum, etc. etc. etc. -- and jotting down all their best arguments (while polishing them into something that really works in a speech) and saving them up for a good chance to use them. See also Dan Larison.
2. All of them. Sarah Kliff: "Bill Clinton's prepared remarks: 3,136 words. Bill Clinton's remarks as delivered: 5,895 words (counting audience cheers)." At one point, he started listing the popular programs that Romney/Ryan would have to cut to keep their deficit promises, and for a second I thought he'd go through every single one of them. Including where the field offices are that would close in the battleground electoral college states. And the names of the caseworkers who would be laid off when that happened. And their children. Including names, grades, and teacher's names.
Granted -- Bob Dole, for one, knew that stuff as well as Clinton did, and perhaps better, and certainly didn't need the prepared text. But Dole couldn't set it to music like that.
3. Digby: "You don't have to talk to people as if they're children with no capacity to understand complicated issues. They yearn for it." What I'd add is that they may yearn for it even if they don't understand the complicated issues; they appreciate a demonstration that the people who they elect to office do understand this stuff.
4. Moving on...what you want to know about whether negative ads work.
5. And more on that knife fight between all the presidents which I think I've linked to before (if not, here it is, via John Sides, who notes that the comments are worth it).