MORNING READ

FROM THE BLOGS:

Know your times tables
Mother Jones's Kevin Drum uses some charts and figures to show that while scores might be low, kids aren't as bad off as we make them out to be in public schools. 

Where's the oil? Mitt's going to find out
Grist's Philip Bump does a victory lap over what he calls his scoop on Mitt Romney's energy plan.

The unlikely union of Stossel and Ryan
Fox News's John Stossel gives a tentative endorsement of Paul Ryan's policies, mind and outlook on how to fix America.

Break up the banks, break them up now
Powerline's Paul Mirengoff adds his two cents to the recent online conversation on the pros and cons of breaking up the banks, calling the issue more paramount in American society than racial equality.

OTHER NEWS SOURCES:

Congressmen slam ATF employee's double dip
Grassley and Issa are livid that an ATF employee has been receiving taxpayer-funded vacation time as well as a private-sector paycheck from JPMorgan Chase, The Hill's Ramsey Cox reports.

CBO paints grim picture of approaching fiscal cliff
The Congressional Budget Office gave its most ominous warning yet about the impending financial crisis if Congress does not act, The Hill's Erik Wasson reports.