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The Roundup for March 28, 2012

I’ll try to wrap up the Supreme Court arguments tomorrow.

• The MF Global hearing today turned into a sideshow, as Assistant Treasurer Edith O’Brien took the Fifth so many times she was kicked off the panel.

• Antonin Scalia, one of the nine Americans who will decide if there will be an Affordable Care Act, doesn’t know what’s in it, and apparently gets his information on the law from Fox Nation and The Blaze. His broccoli argument is pretty ridiculous, to boot, though Donald Verrilli booted the answer. See also former Reagan Solicitor General Charles Fried.

• Spencer Ackerman has another scoop on FBI training manuals, finding that agents were taught they could sometimes “bend or suspend” the law. And Spencer gets results again; the language has been removed from the manuals.

• The first excerpt of Chris Hayes’ Twilight of the Elites is out. Can’t wait for this book.

• I noted this in passing, but Tom Miller continues to taunt Eric Schneiderman, claiming that he had no effect on the foreclosure fraud settlement. Schneiderman has yet to defend himself against this charge.

• There actually is no Solyndra scandal, as the scandalmongers readily admit.

• Binyamin Applebaum sums up the research on long-term unemployment and its consequences. This should be the rejoinder to everyone cheerleading the “recovery.”

• We will see elections in Greece sometime in April or May, and we’ll probably see a total rejection of the establishment by the voters.

• Matt Bai has his own deep dive on who really killed the debt deal back in August. I’m just glad SOMEBODY did. I may return to this story later.

• As the Congress winds around to work on postal service reform, I still think the best solution would be to allow them to perform simple banking tasks for customers, as they did up until the 1960s.

• Somehow, the 48 states doing better than Scott Walker’s on job creation over the last year aren’t whining about Obamacare as a reason for their poor performance.

• Yet another bad housing metric – refi applications are down for the sixth week in a row. I know everyone’s deeply invested in the notion of a housing recovery, but I’ll go with Ben Bernanke – housing is still “kinda pretty flat.”

• Good for Bobby Rush, though it’s kind of amazing that wearing a hoodie in Congress rises to the level of civil disobedience.

• Speaking of courage and bravery, how about Rep. Gwen Moore.

• I do think MSNBC has something of an Al Sharpton problem. I don’t mind his activism but there is a blurred line here. My bigger problem with Sharpton is that his show is just terrible.

• Releasing the reserves won’t do much of anything, but a recognizable dip in oil futures is a good sign.

• Drone strikes in Pakistan’s tribal region are way down this year. Good.

• John McCain likes to grandstand about the consequences of Citizens United, without mentioning that he was the deciding vote against the DISCLOSE Act, which would have at least brought a little transparency to the process.

• Newt Gingrich is slowly reaching the acceptance stage of his Presidential campaign.

• Idaho couldn’t get their mandatory ultrasound bill out of the legislature. If Idaho has that kind of problem, the backlash in the war on women can win anywhere.

• Shaul Mofaz wins a surprising victory over Tzipi Livni (surprising to me, anyway) in the elections for Israel’s main opposition party, Kadima.

• Kinde Durkee finally plead guilty to embezzlement of campaign funds while working as treasurer for multiple candidates and organizations on the Democratic side in California. This is what you get from a hackocracy.

“The liberals are trying to paint it like I’m killing animals,” said Herman Cain, the man who just released an ad where a rabbit gets catapulted into the air and gunned down with a rifle.

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David Dayen

David Dayen