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NOTEWORTHY

New first pup arrives at the White House

The White House got a new resident Thursday with the arrival of Miss Beazley, the first lady's Scottish terrier puppy, a birthday present from President Bush. Although Scottish terriers are often aggressive with other dogs, there appeared to be no animosity between Miss Beazley and the older first dog, Barney.

Propaganda greets 1.3-billionth Chinese

A boy born Thursday in Beijing was declared China's 1.3-billionth citizen in a blaze of publicity to promote the government's "one child" birth limits. State TV showed the 8-pounder's mother, Lan Hui, 31, receiving a bouquet of flowers. Xinhua didn't say whether the parents had picked a name for the boy, who became the star of a campaign touting what the communist government says are the successes of its decades-old policy limiting most urban couples to one child. Critics say forced abortions and sterilizations are part of that policy.

Kill wife: 4 months; Shoot lover: 15 years

A Texas man sentenced to just four months in prison for killing his wife drew a 15-year term for wounding her boyfriend. Jimmy Dean Watkins pleaded guilty to attempted murder for shooting Keith Fontenot in 1998. Watkins' estranged wife, Nancy, was shot to death in the attack. The jury at his 1999 trial found Watkins guilty of murdering his wife but decided he acted with "sudden passion" when he discovered her with Fontenot.

THE UNUSUAL

Malawi chief reveals, forgives murder plot

Malawi's president on Thursday accused his predecessor of complicity in a plot to assassinate him but said he was dropping all charges against the alleged conspirators and forgave them. Bingu wa Mutharika said the plot involved members of his own governing United Democratic Front, to which his predecessor Bakili Muluzi also belongs. Muluzi's spokesman Sam Mpasu said it was "an outrageous accusation."

Warning: Do not read this stupid label

The Michigan Lawsuit Abuse Watch announced the winners in its eighth annual Wacky Warning Label Contest. According to the group, the most ridiculous warning labels on consumer products last year were:

+ "Do not use for personal hygiene," on a toilet brush.

+ "This product moves when used," on a children's scooter.

+ "Once used rectally, the thermometer should not be used orally," on a digital thermometer.

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