Charles Lane in The Washington Post on America's driving habits Gas prices are cheaper now than they were one year ago and signs point to their continued decline. "Romney himself observed last month that Obama 'gets full credit or blame for what's happened to this economy and what's happened to gasoline prices under his watch.' So now it's time to give him credit, right?" Lane writes. "As he undoubtedly knows, Romney was speaking economic nonsense." He describes real reasons for the fluctuations. Demand, he notes, declined perhaps in part because people stayed home, shopping online rather than at the store, for instance. The trend away from driving applies more broadly too, as fewer teens rush to get licenses. "America's love affair with the car may never end. But it does seem to be cooling down."
Jeffrey Goldberg in Bloomberg View on detecting underwear bombs Goldberg revisits one of our favorite TSA anecdotes, in which an agent asked his mother-in-law about an "anomaly" he spotted in "the crotch area" during airport security. The anecdote, he says, got less funny when news broke that U.S. intelligence had foiled another attempted underwear bombing. Would the TSA's security, he wonders, be able to detect the kind of underwear bomb that a double agent handed over to the U.S.? "The chance that the government would actually ratchet back security is close to nil. But when even the head of the TSA admits that its technology might not be able to stop innovative new bombs, it might be time to look at our counterterrorism spending priorities -- and focus more resources on stopping embryonic plots and less on harassing my mother-in-law."