INKY RICKY. So Philadelphia magazine reports that the Inquirer is in column-writing discussions with Rick Santorum. This, the mag says, is the brainchild of Inky publisher Brian Tierney, about whom the mag article contains this amusing paragraph:

Tierney, a longtime Philadelphia adman and PR guru, has deep ties to the GOP. In 2000, he reached out to Catholic voters on behalf of George W. Bush, and in 2003 he chaired the losing campaign of Philadelphia�s Republican candidate for mayor, Sam Katz. Last year, he and an eclectic group of hometown investors paid $562 million to buy the two troubled Philadelphia newspapers, the Inquirer and the Daily News. �I�m post-political now,� Tierney has told us.

Heh indeedy, as someone with a no doubt keen interest in this matter would put it. The three possible columnists with whom Tierney is talking are Santorum, Atlantic writer Mark Bowden, and right-wing talk show host Michael Smerconish. Two wingers and a reporter. That�s post-political, wouldn�t you say? Lord.

Anyone know if this Tierney happens to be related to John Tierney? A quick check seems to indicate no. I also pray, by the way, that neither is remotely related to this Tierney, the most gorgeous woman in the history of Hollywood.

--Michael Tomasky