AND THE AWARD GOES TO JOE BIDEN. Give the man credit. It's only August of 2006, and we've already heard the single dumbest thing a Democratic presidential candidate is going to say prior to the 2008 election? Come on down, Joe Biden (D-Finance Charge). So he goes on FOX News and, like so many people recently, accidentally drinks out of Ollie North's water-cooler. (They simply have to mark that thing better.) He then steps before the cameras and produces one of the most stunning pieces of bafflegab imaginable.

I know that, among the various nominal Democrats with whom Biden feels most comfortable, there's a feeling that the party has no future until it sponsors a car at Talledega. And I bow to nobody in my respect for embattled Southern progressives. But this is triangulation covering itself in grits and running amuck down the boulevard. Hell, in George Allen, we already have one Civil War re-enactor running on the other side and, even if we didn't, is there a reason why Biden decided to dress up this weekend as Clement Vallandigham? "My state was a slave state." Holy mother of God.

--Charles P. Pierce