Odd Watches

A gallery of strange watches. I actually like the one pictured above:

This highly complex instrument indicates the position of the sun, the moon and the stars in the sky at any given hour as seen from our Earth. It also indicates the sunrise and sunset, dawn and dusk, moonphases, moonrise and moonset, eclipses of the sun and moon, the month , the day and the date.

America’s Dumbest Congressmen

Radar ranks the 10 biggest fools on the Hill. Guess who is #1?

1.Representative Katherine Harris (R-FL)

If dumb Congress members were the X-Men, Harris would be their Wolverine—a mutant possessing fearsome skills, the product of a demented government experiment gone horribly wrong. Back in 2000, the then-Florida secretary of state thrust herself into the national spotlight by peremptorily calling the state for George W. Bush. Of course, the longtime crony of Bush’s brother Jeb was also Florida’s GOP campaign chair. Two years later, after she won her seat in the House, Harris wasted no time becoming a by-the-numbers culture warrior. But she really hit her stride on the campaign trail. Running for re-election in 2004, she told voters in Venice, Florida, that a “Middle Eastern” man had been arrested for trying to blow up the power grid of Carmel, Indiana. Neither the mayor of Carmel nor the governor of Indiana—nor anyone else acquainted with reality—had any idea what Harris was talking about.

Florida Republicans responded with sound skepticism when Harris put herself forward to face off against Democratic Senate incumbent Bill Nelson in 2006. But Harris was undaunted, allegedly telling campaign consultant Ed Rollins that God had asked her to run for Senate.

Nevertheless, the Supreme Being seems to have other plans for Florida Republicans—and especially for Harris’s campaign team. Team Harris has hemorrhaged more than 25 senior staff and consultants, Rollins among them, over the past year. They rush for the exits every time there’s a fresh report on Harris’s shady dealing: her $2,800 dinner with MZM defense contractor (and Duke Cunningham’s lubricator in chief) Mitchell Wade, who reportedly vowed to kick in $200,000 for a Harris fundraiser; her withdrawal of $100,000 from her campaign coffers to pay for repairs to her house; news that the FBI is collecting her campaign e-mails for review; and her decision to conceal from her lead staffer a federal subpoena concerning the abuses.

Why We Still Fight

By William S. Lind:

At least 32 American troops have been killed in Iraq this month. Approximately 300 have been wounded. The “battle for Baghdad” is going nowhere. A Marine friend just back from Ramadi said to me, “It didn’t get any better while I was there, and it’s not going to get better.” Virtually everyone in Washington, except the people in the White House, knows that is true for all of Iraq.

Actually, I think the White House knows it too. Why then does it insist on “staying the course” at a casualty rate of more than one thousand Americans per month? The answer is breathtaking in its cynicism: so the retreat from Iraq happens on the next President’s watch. That is why we still fight.

Yep, it’s now all about George. Anyone who thinks that is too low, too mean, too despicable even for this bunch does not understand the meaning of the adjective “Rovian.” Would they let thousands more young Americans get killed or wounded just so George W. does not have to face the consequences of his own folly? In a heartbeat.

Not that it’s going to help. When history finally lifts it leg on the Bush administration, it will wash all such tricks away, leaving only the hubris and the incompetence. Jeffrey Hart, who with Russell Kirk gone is probably the top intellectual in the conservative movement, has already written that George W. Bush is the worst President America ever had. I think the honor still belongs to the sainted Woodrow, but if Bush attacks Iran, he may yet earn the prize. That third and final act in the Bush tragicomedy is waiting in the wings.

(Thanks PVC)