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Jockstrip: The world as we know it

By ELLEN BECK, United Press International   |   Aug. 5, 2002 at 4:00 AM   |   Comments

THINGS WE DON'T UNDERSTAND

The controversial Republican Secretary of State Katherine Harris -- embroiled in the Florida vote counting fiasco during the 2000 presidential elections, quickly resigned this week when she found out she was violating the very election laws she was entrusted to oversee.

Gov. Jeb Bush Friday appointed a new secretary of state to run Florida's elections this fall, as opponents of Harris continued to make fun of her for neglecting to resign -- as required by law -- when she filed as a candidate for Congress.

"Well, it's another bizarre twist in the never-ending Katherine Harris saga," said state Democratic Chairman Bob Poe. "It's obvious she never understood the law. She couldn't even exit gracefully and resign properly."

Republican Chairman Al Cardenas said voters "are so sick and tired of Katherine being attacked that whether this latest salvo is justified or not they just figure enough is enough. I think she's almost immune from criticism at this point because it's been so frequent and so strong against her."

(Thanks to UPI's Les Kjos in Miami.)


NEWS OF OTHER LIFE FORMS

Pets are going missing in Moriarity, N.M., but no one knows why.

KOAT TheNewMexicoChannel.com, reports Torrance County animal control doesn't know who or what is behind the pet snatchings.

Dogs seem to be mostly missing -- Shih Tzu, Pekingese and Chihuahua breeds -- and officials say they could be falling victim to birds of prey or coyotes. Or, the reports says, people looking to steal high-priced dogs.

Animal control is warning pet owners to keep their pets in sight.


TODAY'S SIGN THE WORLD IS ENDING

It's no longer just a few cases here and there. Louisiana and Mississippi officials say 40 new human cases of the mosquito-borne West Nile virus have caused three deaths.

This almost doubles the total number of U.S. cases so far this year and shows the disease is spreading across the country.

Louisiana state officials are alarmed because some of the new cases have emerged in regions where West Nile had not yet been seen. "It has now spread to almost every corner of the state," Kyle Viator, spokesman for the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals, told United Press International.

One day earlier, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta announced 44 cases of West Nile had occurred across the U.S. this year.

(Thanks to UPI's Steve Mitchell in Washington, D.C.)


AND FINALLY, TODAY'S UPLIFTING STORY

Jamie Fraser is nearing the finish line of his 4,500-mile Coast-to-Coast Tour for the Cure.

Fraser, a 27-year-old with cystic fibrosis, has been biking 60 miles a day for almost three months to get to Florence, Ore. He's raised more than $37,000 for CF research and treatments.

"Although I was diagnosed with CF when I was 2 years old, I have been fortunate to have a mild form of the disease. Most people with CF must take piles of pills a day and undergo rigorous treatment to keep their lungs clear and functioning," he says.

Fraser's hope for the tour, sponsored by Advanced Respiratory Inc., is that people who see him ride will be inspired to support the fight to cure CF.

© 2002 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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