In the Sept. 2007 issue of the Atlantic, there's an article entitled "The Secret of the Irish Scone." There's a wonderful discussion about what makes a scone great, and how most scones sold in America are really rock cakes (and most Americans don't have a clue what a real scone should be like). The article also gives a recipe for a classic scone from Jimmy Griffin, a fourth-generation baker from Galway. Griffin's secret is to avoid the whole challenge of mixing cold butter/shortening into flour by using liquid fat -- olive oil, if you can believe it! But it makes for a much lighter, more traditional scone, and makes up for the fact that (1) most of us don't have the knack for mixing butter into flour properly, and (2) you can't buy the right flour in America (it's just not sold here). This recipe is worth a try.