The Range

Superbug Eats Children!

As if the West Nile virus and brain-eating amoebas weren't enough: A superbug is eating our kids! The Tucson Unified School District has alerted parents that a few students have been exposed to methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), a staph infection that causes painful, pus-filled boils to rise up on the skin. The antibiotic-resistant virus can prove fatal if not treated early. TUSD Superintendent Roger Pfeuffer assured parents: "At no time was there any instance of surgery or disfigurement, as has been rumored."

TUSD has scrubbed and sanitized locker rooms, dance rooms and locker rooms, and Pfeuffer writes, "athletic teams have been addressed regarding good hygiene practices and periodic self body checks."

MRSA may be responsible for as many as 19,000 deaths each year in the United States, making it deadlier than the AIDS virus, according to The Washington Post.

Let the Naked Games Begin! The Tucson City Council rejected a liquor-license request from the owners of Club Turbulence, a nightclub featuring fully nude dancers located near the airport (and just down the street from Weekly World Headquarters). The club's owners, represented by former councilman Fred Ronstadt, had argued that if they could serve booze, they would no longer cater to the 18- to 20-year-old crowd, and the dancers would start wearing some form of panties. Turns out that the owners weren't eligible to apply for a liquor license, because they'd already been shot down twice in the last couple of years. State officials had let the application sneak through, because the owners had used a slightly different address on the paperwork.

Voter Alert!

If you recently registered to vote and haven't received your voter ID, it's time to panic! County Recorder F. Ann Rodriguez issued a "stranger danger" warning that a private firm, Scottsdale-based Petition Partners, has turned in dozens of flawed voter-registration forms in recent months. Rodriguez says that if you thought you had recently registered but have yet to get a voter card in the mail, you should contact her office at 740-4330.

Rodriguez advises citizens to either register to vote at government buildings such as post offices, or mail the forms to her office. The forms contain vital personal information that could be used for identity theft.

Up Shit Creek

The town of Marana sued Pima County last week in pursuit of control of a portion of the county sewer system. Marana officials--who want to treat the sewage and recharge the reclaimed water to get credit and continue pumping groundwater--claim that an agreement with the county gives them the right to their citizens' sewage. Pima County says ownership of the sewage is more complicated.

In other legal and toilet news: Republican Sen. Larry Craig of Idaho appealed the Minnesota court ruling that said he could not take back his guilty plea on disorderly conduct charges stemming from an incident in which he was trolling for sex in a men's bathroom at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. Craig, who insists he is so not gay, has changed his mind about quitting the U.S. Senate and plans to fight to convince America that he merely has a "wide stance" when on the crapper--a line stinking so heavily of bullshit that even Marana's high-tech treatment plants couldn't handle it.

Another Brick in the Wall

Homeland Security chief Michael Chertoff announced earlier this week that he would sidestep all environmental laws to resume construction of a border fence in the San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area. A federal judge had halted the work earlier this month at the request of the Sierra Club and Defenders of Wildlife, which had complained that the project lacked a proper environmental review.

Congressman Raúl Grijalva announced he would introduce legislation to repeal the law that allows Homeland Security to ignore environmental regulations.

In other border news: The Congressional Steel Caucus is worried that the border wall in Arizona is being built with Chinese steel rather than American material, according to The Associated Press.

Seeing Red

The UA football team gave it up to the mighty Stanford Cardinal, losing 21-20 for yet another humiliating defeat this season. The Wildcats are now 2-6 on the season and 1-4 in Pac-10 play. Up next: A trip to Seattle to take on the Washington Huskies on Saturday, Oct. 27.

Last week, UA Athletic Director Jim Livengood assured the Tucson Citizen that he was not going to fire Mike Stoops. But the real question remains: Is UA President Robert Shelton going to fire Livengood?

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