Wednesday, February 21, 2007

The Waiting ...

image credit: U.S. Naval Observatory

So, I told Google, "find me a cool clock image", and this is what it came up with. It's a Hewlett-Packard 5701A cesium clock, one of the best. The article I, ahem, borrowed it from has this to say:

USNO Cesium Clocks

Most of the Observatory's cesium clocks are model HP5071A, made by Agilent Technologies, Inc. of Santa Clara, California. With an improved cesium tube and new microprocessor- controlled servo loops, the 5071A vastly outperforms the earlier 5061 cesium frequency standards. The Naval Observatory 5071A's feature HP's optional high-performance cesium beam tube, with accuracy 1 part in 10E12, frequency stability 8 parts in 10 to the 14th, and a time domain stability of < 2 parts in 10 to the 14th with an averaging time of 5 days. Other companies that produce cesium clocks include Datum, Inc. of Beverly, MA and Frequency Electronics, Inc. of Uniondale, NY.

Cesium Atoms at Work

It's your tax dollars at work, and working pretty well, I might add.

Meanwhile, the defense and prosecution have made their closing arguments in the Libby case, and it's been given to the jury now. There's nothing to do now but wait for the verdict. Considering that it took more than a day for the two sides to make their closing arguments, I'm not expecting to hear anything soon. It's hard to wait when there's so much riding on a case, but that's how it has to be. There's a lot of information that the jurors need to discuss and absorb.

You could pass some time by reading T-Rex's response to the Gary Kamiya article I mentioned yesterday. You may notice some similarity in his remarks to something I wrote last week, but T-Rex is much, much funnier. You could also get caught up on who George W. Bush reminds himself of on this President's Day.

There are, of course, people who have things to do that don't involve waiting around for some former Admnistration scumbag to finally encounter the bad karma he's been building up all this time, and I'm going to do my best to imitate them today. Try to enjoy the day.

UPDATE: Dan Froomkin thinks that there might be some bad karma headed Dick Cheney's way, courtesy of U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald:

Fitzgerald has long maintained that Libby's testimony to investigators -- that all he had done was pass along unsubstantiated gossip about Plame that he had heard from NBC Washington bureau chief Russert -- was a pure fabrication.

But yesterday, he called the jurors' attention to the fact that before telling that story to investigators in October 2003, Libby had only shared it with one person: Cheney, who also happened to be the person from whom Libby first learned about Plame, fully a month before the conversation with Russert.

"What's the one thing he tells one person in the fall of 2003?" Fitzgerald asked. "He goes and tells the person who told him" about Plame this story he had made up.

"Think about that," Fitzgerald said momentously, in an obvious attempt to get the jury -- and quite possibly, a wider audience -- to consider that Libby and Cheney may have been agreeing on a cover story at the time.

That, by the way, was precisely the possibility suggested by Murray Waas, in a particularly prescient piece for the National Journal on Sunday. Waas also quoted sources as saying that if Libby is found guilty, the prosecution may pursue Cheney -- presumably by trying one more time to "flip" Libby and turn him into a prosecution witness.

The Cloud Over Cheney

If that Waas article looks familiar, it might be because I pointed to it a couple of days ago in Scooter's Gonna Skate. I still think there's going to be a pardon for Libby, and Froomkin's reminding us why.

UPDATE 2: Reportedly, the Libby trial jury have adjourned for the evening.

UPDATE 3: The AP says so, so it must be true.

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