Mstislav Rostropovich has passed away.  One of my favorite pieces of his is his interpretation of Dvorak's Cello Concerto, especially movement three, for it's lyric anguish and his amazingly fluid play of the cello in it.  Imagine my surprise that someone had uploaded some video of a performance of this piece.  Consider this a token of admiration for a man whose life was dedicated to perfecting his art, and to helping others to move their own artistic interests forward as well.  Just a beautiful piece of music, beautifully played, and such a loss of a great musical icon.

– MSNBC reports that President Bush is serving the Japanese Prime Minister cheeseburgers for lunch at Camp David today.  No further comment required.

– The Democratic Caucus has Harry Reid's back today in a letter to the editor to the WaPo.   I've confirmed that this includes Sanders and Lieberman in the signing.  (Cue the discussion of how Lieberman can continue to publicly stab Reid and the Dems in the back on policy, but wag his scoldy finger at someone else doing the same.  Welcome to the club, David Broder.  Enjoy basking in the sanctimony.)  In any case, this was a good move — any pushing forward of a spine is, frankly, a welcome development.  So kudos to whomever in the Democratic caucus thought of this and got the ball rolling.  More unified strength in action, please.

Digby has a fantastic article regarding the dangers of imbedded journalism, and the lure of awesomeness.  Do give it a read.  And if you missed the Moyers special on PBS the other day, C&L has a number of clips from the show for you — enjoy!

– Henry Waxman's Government Oversight Committee has invited George Tenet to testify before the Committee on May 10th regarding the Niger/uranium claims and other blurred intelligence questions.  (H/T to TiredFed for the link.)  With a book to sell, this could get quite interesting from Tenet.  More from the LATimes on the Tenet book.  (H/T to Paul Kiel at The Muck.)

– And just when I thought that I could not be more disgusted with the Bush Administration…I get more disgusted.  Read Scout Prime and prepare to be seriously annoyed.  Because, gosh, the folks in the Gulf Coast region should just be happy the President went down there for a klieg light speech and some subsequent photo ops when his poll numbers are sagging.  It's not as though they are Americans who have been promised help or anything by the federal government.  Oh…wait…

Nicole at C&L posts a clip of a film called "Taxi To The Dark Side" that is getting quite a bit of buzz.  It is chilling, but worth the watch.  Sidney Blumenthal was involved in the production of the film, and has a fantastic article about it at Salon.

AJ at Americablog discusses the Richard Clarke smackdown op-ed from the Daily News, wherein Clarke reduces the flypaper strategy of the Bush Administration to the size of a gnat.

Kung Fu Monkey shares some book reviews on the subject of women and Islam.  And while I am thinking about it, peace and safety to Riverbend and her family.

– Today is the last day of public comment to save chocolate from cheap, icky pseudo-ingredient additives.  Listen to Jim at Making Light and go let your thoughts on the subject be known.

UPDATE:  Meant to link this but missed it somehow with all of my open windows — huge thank you to AZ Matt for the reminder.  If it's Friday, it's another DoJ docu-dump.  The House Judiciary Committee has the links.