Opening Act: Grotesquely Deformed

John Avlon writes the sole skeptical take on Sarah Palin’s latest web video. See? This isn’t hard.

Palin’s PAC spent $5.1 million in the last election cycle (more than it raised in that time period, raising some questions about Palin’s claims of fiscal responsibility).

But the real news comes when you look at how donors’ money was actually doled out: just $298,500 to candidates. The bulk of the rest of it, more than $4.8 million, went to—you guessed it—consultants.

This is unfair to Palin in one respect: Her endorsement, however she makes it, is worth untold thousands of dollars in free media. (Example: She puts a video on the Internet, with no real ask, and it’s newsy enough to get covered by the political press for three days.) A Palin Facebook message is worh more than $2400 from her PAC. But, yes, donating to that PAC is no way to shame the consultant class.

Mark Krikorian keeps the anti-Rubio campaign running.

In the next few weeks, he will have to decide whether to lash himself to Chuck Schumer or walk away from a grotesquely deformed bill. His own future, not to mention the country’s will hinge on that decision.

Rebecca Rothfield gets real about Zizek.

Edward Felten gets scary about copyright law.

And we’re two years out from an election in the U.K., but it’s fun to check in from time to time and see how the ruling Conservatives are being brought low by their austerity policy.