This seemed like a busy day, what did you think?

• Keep in mind that the vote on Ben Bernanke’s confirmation is tomorrow morning in the Senate Banking Committee at 9:30am. Bernie Sanders is still railing against Bernanke, and now John McCain is leaning against him. Annie Lowrey has a good piece on Bernanke’s challenges, and another good piece from Matt Yglesias. And there’s this interesting response from Bernanke to a set of questions from Sen. Jim Bunning.

• By the way, Bernanke had an exploding adjustable rate mortgage. I don’t even know what to say about that.

• The President tried to create a soundbite yesterday by saying that energy retrofits are sexy. With a name like “cash for caulkers,” you bet it’s sexy!

• If the facility at Thomson, IL, just turns into Gitmo North, it’s worthless, but saying what John Boehner said, that the President has “forgotten 9-11,” is pretty revolting.

• Fun, Blue Shield of California will immediately drop your coverage if you miss a payment. Surely that new police force we’re creating in health care reform will be able to stop such perfidy! Oh wait, there is no police force.

• Another poll shows the Tea Party stronger than both Democrats and Republicans in favorability. This is just a reflection of “not from Washington” more than anything, but it does presage a real third-party movement on the ballot in 2012.

• DC passed its gay marriage bill and it looks like it’ll stick. That’s five states and the District who have marriage equality. A bit of good news amid a lot of bad news in that long struggle.

• They should have to report the numbers on escalation in Afghanistan with the number of contractors as well as military forces. This artificial depression of the real number of Americans in combat is distressing.

• The GOP bumper sticker for 2010: “I hate big tent, I hate inclusiveness, and I hate outreach.”

• The climate deal in Copenhagen still looks shaky, but one bright spot looms – a deal that would compensate countries for maintaining their forests.

• The bill to potentially sanction Iran through cutting off their access to refined petroleum passed the House with all but 12 votes yesterday. Dissident leaders in the Iranian reform movement hate the idea of sanctions, incidentally, saying they will only harm the Iranian people and strengthen the regime.

• This story on the virtual end of accountability for torture is well worth reading. Dahlia Lithwick has a very good piece on this as well.

• John Burton, the chair of the largest Democratic Party in America, the California Dem Party, actually called for an end to the filibuster in the Senate today in a call to supporters. California has its own problems, and maybe Burton should tend to those, but it’s mildly interesting.

• Want to know everything you wanted to know about reconciliation? Here. Chris Matthews was haranguing about how reconciliation never created a “massive national program,” but one of the largest programs providing health coverage to Americans is something called COBRA, which stands for the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act.

• Barack Obama wrote to Kim Jong-Il, trying to restart talks on their nuclear program.

• And Sarah Palin is the jerk’s jerk, period.

David Dayen

David Dayen

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