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In brief:

WHO'S ON FIRST? _ The question of who is in charge of the growing state of confusion in the Soviet Union became murkier on Wednesday as the national and Russian parliaments adopted conflicting claims to sovereignty over the other's laws. The Soviet parliament first passed legislation saying that its laws supersede any conflicting measures in the 15 Soviet republics. The sponsors of the bill said it is designed to end the "war of laws" between the national and republic governments, some of which are seeking to break away from central control. The measure only fed the confusion. The parliament of the Russian republic quickly approved a law that said Soviet laws can take effect "on the territory of the Russian federation" only after the Russian Parliament gives final ratification. Russia contains more than half of the nation's population and industrial strength. OUT OF TOUCH _ The official Soviet labor union organization, which for 70 years maintained the Communist Party's grip on the proletariat, voted to dissolve itself because, it acknowledged, it was badly out of touch with the country's workers and unable to cope with the economic crisis. Unofficial labor groups are expected to be formed.

OUT OF FAVOR _ Ivan Frolov, the editor of the Communist Party newspaper Pravda, facing a hostile staff and slumping circulation, offered to resign but was told by the Politburo to stay on. Pravda, which means "truth," has lost credibility as the party itself has declined. And Frolov is disliked by many staffers because of his conservative views.

_ Information from the New York Times, Los Angeles Times and AP was used in this report.

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