Today’s edition of quick hits:
* I’ll never fully understand how the right perceives this as nothing: “The U.S. military says it launched five more airstrikes in support of Iraqi government troops and Sunni tribesmen protecting the Haditha Dam against fighters of the Islamic State group that controls parts of northern and western Iraq.”
* Syria: “An explosion killed the leader of one of Syria’s most powerful Islamist insurgent groups Ahrar al-Sham on Tuesday, the group said, and an organization that monitors violence in the civil war said at least 28 of its commanders had died.”
* Encouraging economic news: “The number of U.S. job openings remained near the highest level in 13 years in July, and companies also stepped up hiring that month to the fastest pace in nearly seven years, two signs the job market is slowly healing.”
* Additional sanctions on Russia? “The Obama administration is putting the finishing touches on a new round of sanctions against Russia for its role in the Ukraine crisis.”
* Climate crisis: “Levels of heat-trapping carbon dioxide in the atmosphere rose at a record-shattering pace last year, a new report shows, a surge that surprised scientists and spurred fears of an accelerated warming of the planet in decades to come.”
* Hopefully not the last hearing on the militarization of local police: “Senators blasted the Pentagon on Tuesday for providing police forces with an overabundance of military equipment, which they say laid the groundwork for what unfolded in Ferguson, Mo., last month.”
* Republican Bob McDonnell is out at Jerry Falwell’s college: “Ex-Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell has lost his teaching gig at Liberty University. The Christian college announced on Friday they had ditched the disgraced politician after he was convicted on multiple federal corruption charges.”
* The cast of “Fox & Friends” argued this morning that domestic violence “is a very serious issue to us.” There was reason to believe otherwise yesterday.
* Ex-Im: “The White House is ‘heartened’ by news that Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) is considering a temporary extension of the Export-Import Bank, press secretary Josh Earnest said Tuesday.”
* It’s heartening when E.J. Dionne Jr. says what needs to be said: “The safe journalistic trope is that both of our major parties have become more ‘extreme.’ This is simply not true. It’s the Republican Party that’s veered far off center. To deny the fact is to disrespect the hard work of conservatives in taking over the GOP.”
* I guess they’re still pretending to be upset about the release of an American POW? “The House passed a resolution on Tuesday condemning the Obama administration for not giving Congress advance notice of the exchange of Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl for five Taliban prisoners.”
* Ever get the feeling Ron Fournier comments on developments in Congress without fully understanding what actually happens in Congress?
* Regular ol’ trash talk is fine, but trash talk between Nate Silver and Sam Wang is sublime.
* And if you missed Rachel talking about it on the show, we’ve been updating an online whip count, listing the members of Congress who support a congressional debate and vote on authorizing force against ISIS targets. Have your representatives weighed in? If so, and their names aren’t on our list, email us at Rachel@msnbc.com.
Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.