Ethanol in gasoline is a mistake.

Ethanol in gasoline is a mistake.

In the seventies, in Iowa, my company ordered all company vehicles to use ethanol gasoline. The ethanol plugged the fuel filters on all of our company vehicles.

Retiring, I moved to Medford. Ethanol again. It plugged the fuel pump on my new truck.

The gasoline company fixed it and replaced a tankful of gas. They knew what the problem was.

Ethanol leaves a residue on the sides of your gas tanks. It flakes off and plugs your fuel filters. Most fuel filters are now inside the gas tanks.

Tell your governor you do not want ethanol gasoline in your vehicles. — Ed Scanlin, Medford

For Paul Greenberg to claim Martin Luther King as a conservative icon is akin to Republicans bestowing sainthood on Abraham Lincoln. Oh, they have, haven't they. I see.

To say Dr. King's "I Have a Dream" "could have come from a conservative political tract" is truly awesome in its delusion and denigration.

Defining an American conservative as "someone dedicated to preserving the gains of liberal revolution" is sophistry at best. History shows that "liberal revolutions" tend to be reactions against conservative oppression. See 1215, 1776, etc.

Of course, Mr. Greenberg gets in his obligatory Democrat dig, this time at Barack Obama for showing "that a black candidate can be as vacuous as any other" and calling that "progress of a sort."

And, finally, Mr. Greenberg rhapsodizes on "a general indifference to racial appeals." It will be interesting and instructive to see if that "indifference" plays out as "indifference" to racism, bigotry and misogyny as the election season moves along. — Harry Freiberg, Brookings

Your front-page article about the deterioration of west Medford neighborhoods missed a fundamental point:

West Medford has been bombarded for years by stinky, unhealthy, cancer-causing industrial pollution from Sierra Pine and Timber Products, both of which have made millions in profits for their callous out-of-town owners. Boise's Central Point plant was also a contributor to this problem until 2002, when it was forced by the EPA to clean up its emissions. (In fact, the Oregon DEQ refused a plea from the EPA for assistance in making Boise clean up; see www.epa.gov/compliance/resources/cases/civil/caa/boisecd.pdf.)

With rehabilitation of west Medford and its schools now at the head of the local political agenda, it is an outrage that the nearby polluters have recently succeeded in getting their buddies over at the DEQ to extend the now-passed 2007 deadline for these polluters to clean up their cancer-causing pollution.

Call the DEQ at 800-452-4011 to suggest that all the pollution from Sierra Pine and Timber Products be diverted by hose directly into the executive offices of the DEQ on Barnett Road. Maybe then the DEQ will take some action, allowing west Medford to finally begin to heal itself. — Conde Cox, Jacksonville, member, board of directors, Oregon Toxics Alliance (www.oregontoxics.org); member, steering committee, Rogue Valley Citizens for Clean Air (www.roguecleanair.org)

We all know that Southern Oregon's education employees are more than public servants. They are public assets.

We also know that providing professional and competitive pay helps attract and retain experienced and professional staff. And experienced educators help students achieve at higher levels.

So why are the Southern Oregon ESD superintendent and board reluctant to invest in the very people who help students succeed and make our schools great? Why are they resistant to helping provide a safer working and learning environment for educators and students? Why are they unwilling to acknowledge and value the expertise and dedication of more than ESD 100 educators and specialists? Why haven't they settled a fair contract?

These are very good questions. And they're the questions you should be asking the ESD superintendent and board members. Please let the ESD board and administration know that it's time to invest in one of Southern Oregon's most important public assets — the hardworking members of the Southern Oregon ESD Education Association. — Michael Friedl and Betsy Biber, co-presidents, UniServ/local Education Association, Southern Oregon ESD