Always tickles me to see the conservative right leap at any issue that gives them a chance to bash some minority under the cover of so-called 'values'. Witness a frothy attempt to whip up discontent over the New Jersey ruling approving equal rights for same-sex couples as for married (but, interestingly, avoiding the issue concerning the actual use of the word marriage).

As a long time friend of a lesbian couple raising a child, I feel the sooner such benefits arrive the better. Plus I don't believe government has any place in someone's bedroom. Still, no doubt some apathetic religious conservatives might be sufficiently stirred to vote and sustain what is clearly one of the most inept governments in American history, and that will not be good for anyone. We'll see.

Meanwhile we are up to nearly 100 U.S. servicemen dead in Iraq this month.