It is good to know that our President has not taken the whole summer off(it just seems that way).  No, Bush made time to stop by Pennsylvania to visit the nine miners who were rescued from a collapsed mineearlier this summer.  One media account of Bush's visit:> Bush went to Pennsylvania tomeet with the nine coal miners rescued earlier this summer to congratulatethem. He also cut the budget for the Mine Safety and Health Administrationby $4.7 million out of $118 million total: enforcement was cut, the chestX-ray program was cut entirely, as were mine inspections for coal dust,which causes explosions. Bush filled five of the top positions at MSHA withcoal industry executives. That's Bush for you.  Hard at work taking with one hand and"giving" with the other.

We started getting the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel (newspaper) delivered to ourhouse this week.  That only took two weeks and six phone calls.

Sarah and I have been looking for a dog to adopt of late.  However,our landlords have given us such silly standards that we've all but given uptrying to find a dog that fits them.  The standards that our landlordsgave us are: - Must be at least one year old. - Must weigh no more than twenty pounds.

Most dogs that are anything more than mountain lion bait weigh more thantwenty pounds.  Dachshunds generally weigh more than twentypounds.  Beagles weigh more than twenty pounds.  Generallyworthless breeds, however, do weigh less than twenty pounds.  Theseworthless breeds include, but are not limited to: - All "toy" dogs - Chihuahuas - Bichon Frise and all similar Mobile Fur Piles - Yappy little annoyances not falling into one of the above categories

I call these sorts of dogs mountain lion bait because of a postcard thatwe saw in Montana or Wyoming (I forget which).  The postcard had apicture of a woman out walking a little Mobile Fur Pile on a leash. The caption was something along the lines of "Trolling for MountainLions in Wyoming."  Sarah and I both generally dislike littleyappy good for nothing Mobile Fur Piles so we got a big kick out of thepostcard.  Anyway, in addition to these overly strict conditions, thelandlords want us to pay them an additional $20/month.  Apparently, thelandlords are afraid that any dog we get is going to cause damage to thehouse.  So, not only do we "get" to have an annoying, yappy,easily stepped-on, threatened by Ira, Mobile Fur Pile, but we get topay $240/year for the privilege?!?  Where's the line forming for thatgreat deal?

Why is it that landlords always worry about dogs trashingapartments?  Humans are capable of much more inventive, sustained, anddevastating destructive moods than dogs.  A quiet, alcohol-fueledparty of ten could gut an apartment over the course of an afternoon, allwithin the bounds of a lease.  Sure, the security deposit would beforfeit, but if the renter was willing to pay that price, that's an option open tohim/her.  A badly trained dog, on the other hand, might chew up the renter'sfurniture or other household goods, or maybe scratch up a door in thecourse of an afternoon.  However, since leases can't legislate humanbehavior, landlords like to legislate dog ownership instead.  I guessthat makes landlords feel like they are more in control of the situationsomehow.