The Daily Wrap

Andrew Sullivan —  Jul 31 2012 @ 10:30pm

Today on the Dish, a Romney aide revealed the campaign's press strategy when he told a reporter what he could kiss, the blogosphere went wild over Bain-style diplomacy, The Economist made the conservative case against Romney, and Rove worried about Obama's Electoral College lead. Michael Kazin compared Romney to a disastrous CEO-as-president, Hoover, while Gideon Rachman saw signs of Dubya. As Mitt cozied up to the oil industry, Craig Brown had a bit of a laugh at his expense. And in our Ad War, Romney drove a car and Obama gave himself money.

Looking abroad, West Bank checkpoint guards revealed their aversion to empathy and Netanyahu qualified as a leftist – by GOP standards. New Zealand's prime minister became another conservative leader in favor of marriage equality as a pro-lifer fell in love with Canadian healthcare. India lost (a lot of) power, China made things interesting with some old-fashioned military aggression, and a culture in Papua New Guinea ran on the power of boredom. On the homefront, things looked crummy for the US economy, Jeff Madrick deconstructed the numbers behind the Medicaid expansion, and DC got held hostage in a national culture war.

In Olympic coverage, vaulters kicked ass while swimmers got dressed to compress. Saudi female athletes sadly obscured more pressing issues back home while anti-doping faced an uphill battle. Though Muhammed Ali was again the greatest in our MHB, fencer Shin A Lam saw her hopes dashed. And Andrew picked on a poorly hung Eurostar ad.

In assorted commentary, Jonah Lehrer resigned over his journalistic sins, Redditors proved geekily sexist, and Jim Holt pondered some existential angst. Capote revealed "The Best-Kept Boy in the World", Cord Jefferson made a point about moral hyperbole with some racy Roman graffiti, "Planet of the Snail" followed a handicapped Korean couple, and readers reflected on the power of rape. Tracy Clark-Flory investigated love affairs, forcing the Dish to mention Kristen Stewart, while flies risked death to have sex.  An eagle-eyed reader clarified scatological hiring principles, Anatoly Liberman traced the linguistic origins of "fart", and bike commuters tried to take a shower. We also figured out why watermelons can be seedless and highlighted a new movie that might make us go whoa, man. Readers nailed another VFYW contest while there was peaceful summer seating in today's VFYW.

– C.D.