Tuesday, January 31, 2006

What it means, getting government off your back

STATE OF THE UNION

The state of the union is pretty good. The Canadian union.

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"Sorry we killed your dad, but here's a ballpoint pen," said WVa Democratic Governor Joe Manchin III.

What it means, getting government off your back:

After one of the deadliest months for coal mining in years, federal mine regulators last week began formally considering safety improvements to help miners survive underground fires and explosions. Among the proposals: mandatory caches of oxygen tanks and breathing masks inside every coal mine.

The idea may have struck some miners as familiar, because it was. A similar proposal was put forward by the same regulators six years ago, only to be scrapped by the Bush administration shortly after it took office. And the oxygen caches were not the only proposed safety improvement to be withdrawn.

In all, the Bush administration abandoned or delayed implementation of 18 proposed safety rules that were in the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration's regulatory pipeline in early 2001, a review of agency records shows. At least two of the dropped proposals have now been resurrected in the aftermath of deadly accidents at the Sago and Alma mines in West Virginia.

Meanwhile in Canada:

All 72 trapped miners are now safe and home with their families after being brought to the surface Monday morning.

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