Another top-flight conservative is heard from. “Scott Walker: Don’t shut down government over Obamacare.” Is Heritage Action going to try to defeat him too?

President Obama in Germany President Obama appears at the Brandenburg Gate in Germany. (Pablo Martinez Monsivais/Associated Press)

First-rate questions on Syria. “How is it, from a moral standpoint, that the use of chemical weapons that kills several hundred people is a far greater ‘moral obscenity’ than prosecuting a civil war that has killed hundreds of thousands of people? Why didn’t the civil war ‘shock the conscience of the world,’ since the body count is so much greater?”

Tip-top commentators don’t run away. “MSNBC’s Karen Finney on Monday hung up on conservative talker Hugh Hewitt after he repeatedly asked her during an interview on his radio show to say whether Alger Hiss was a communist.” In case she was uncertain, the answer is “yes.”

Top-tier presidents don’t think like this. “Mr. Carney said while the goal of any U.S. action against the Syrian government isn’t to oust Mr. Assad, the Obama administration still believes he has lost his credibility as a leader.” Bill Clinton knew better than to leave a genocidal strong man in power.

Top-notch advice: “Ret. Gen. Jack Keane said an attack on Syrian president Bashar al-Assad’s air power would result in a significant degradation in his military capability Tuesday on Special Report and be a proper response to Assad’s use of chemical weapons. In an interview with Bret Baier, Keane called Assad’s air capabilities his most vulnerable military component.”

First-string national security officials didn’t grasp this; perhaps the second-term subs will get it. This is promising: “Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel said today that the United States doesn’t need permission from the United Nations or any other international body to strike Syria for the use of chemical weapons against civilians. ‘No nation, no group of nations is bound by only one dimension of whether they’d make a decision to respond to any self-defense or any other violation of the kind of humanitarian violations that we saw in Syria.'” That was also true of the 100,000 Syrians killed by conventional weapons, but this president’s conscience wasn’t sufficiently shocked.

Top-paid Democratic lobbyists and their political cohorts think conflicts of interest are for little guys to worry about. “Super-lobbyist Tony Podesta is unloading his $1.8 million Capitol Hill townhouse, and he’s paying Sen. Mary Landrieu’s husband to sell it for him. . . . The firm’s clients have business before Landrieu. Lockheed Martin is currently the Podesta Group’s biggest client, paying $200,000 in the second quarter for lobbying on appropriations and budget matters, according to a lobbying filing. Landrieu is chairwoman of the Homeland Security Appropriations subcommittee, and Lockheed is the number four contractor for the Department of Homeland Security, pulling in $446 million, according to a late-2012 report by the Center for Strategic and International Studies. Oil giant BP is another Podesta Group client, paying the firm more than $2 million in lobbying fees since late 2006. Landrieu became BP’s champion earlier this year.” Oof.