Let's check out some political stories we found Below the Fold:

Seeing Double

State Department officials, perhaps inspired by Raelian weirdos, met this week to explore the question: How do you assign nationality to a clone for the purposes of issuing a passport?

Eventually, the meeting adjourned and the group performed the bureaucratic equivalent of running screaming into the night: It resisted the temptation to regulate. A spokes-being announced the matter was hypothetical -- and unanswerable, especially if the mother and clone were not related.

Spot Restorer

Speaking of the Raelians, check out the latest from the Clonaid Web site -- slogan: "Eternal life thanks to science."

Those questing for mechanically induced immortality now may participate in the insuraclone program, which includes the option of a genetic repair kit. There's clonapet, for "wealthy individuals who wish to see their lost pet be brought back to life. This service will also be offered to the owners of racing horses."

And for do-it-yourself replicators, there's the new RMX2010 cell fusion device -- only $9,210.

The Bonds of Love?

It has been a busy week for sado-environmentalists. PETA -- People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals -- endorsed a leather-free line of S and M gear -- whips, restraints, dog collars and the like -- noting that the stuff has the look and feel of real leather. PETA praised the torture devices as "cruelty free."