Happy Birthday to Russ Ortiz, 39. Not a bad pitcher in his prime, although his Wins/quality seems fairly high. And then two years after the Giants gave him a way for two guys who never worked out, he went from Atlanta to Arizona...and fell off a cliff. And yet he managed to hang around for at least parts of five more seasons, and more than 50 more starts, despite never again doing better than an 82 ERA+. Anyway, he was fun to root for.
Oh, the good stuff:
1. Ross Douthat takes on conservative libertarians. Interesting.
2. While Conor Friedersdorf really doesn't like elite-bashing by elite conservatives.
3. And Philip Klein understands the context of the situation.
4. Michelle Dean on Arendt and (Mary) McCarthy.
5. And I'm not a big fan of "derp," but Noah Smith almost convinces me.