*SILLY SEASON: The Senate Conservative Action Super Pac released a lame ad this week in which a pool salesman whines about Obamacare. Bill Shroyer, a major Republican donor in the state and the owner of Splash Superpools in North Little Rock, says that "Washington just doesn't get it" and that federal laws are "all catastrophes...the policies that you're creating in Washington are killing these companies." (I would think the Pac wouldn't have any trouble finding local shills, but Shroyer is being re-used from this previous ad, when he appeared alongside other conservative activists in the state.)
Was it really the healthcare law that led to this dude laying off 75 percent of his workforce or just the unfortunate luck of selling pools in a downturned economy? Not clear, but whatever. It turns out that Splash took hundreds of thousands of dollars of Obama stimulus money from those know-nothing feds. Pryor and Democratic spinners pounced; conservative spinners counter-pounced.
There’s going to be a mammoth amount of money spent on this campaign. My (free!) advice to both Pryor and the anti-Pryor crew: Make better ads.
*SPIES LIKE US: The Guardian reports on an absolute scandal:
The National Security Agency is currently collecting the telephone records of millions of US customers of Verizon, one of America's largest telecoms providers, under a top secret court order issued in April.
Will Tea Partiers break with the security-state fans in their party over this? Will Obama supporters be willing to call out his administration on this? Will the chattering classes care?
*MAYFLOWER: This panel discussion from Al Jazeera's Inside Story is worth your time.
*PLAYING POLITICS WITH TRANSPLANT ETHICS: Everyone rushing to scream "death panels" on the lung transplant case of 10-year-old Sarah Murnaghan should read this post from Aaron Carroll at the Incidental Economist.