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Retirement raises questions

Some interesting questions arise from the story regarding Superintendent Steve Wiseley's retirement.

Was his decision to not make his retirement more of a public announcement misleading, manipulative, controlling? You decide.

Was the school board's nondisclosure decision misleading, manipulative, controlling? You decide.

Do school board members represent the public who elected them or do they represent one person ' the superintendent? You decide.

Their actions imply that the public is not capable of sorting out what is and what is not important in regard to voting on a school bond issue. Could there be important information that the public has the right to know regarding the school bond issue that is not being disclosed? You decide.

Is there information regarding the school bond issue that is misleading, manipulated and controlled? We will have to evaluate and decide. ' Janie Wickre, Medford

Higher ed too costly

If the higher education report in Thursday's Tribune showing Oregon grades standing is correct, the taxpayers of the state and the students are getting a poor return on the tax money spent.

Maybe the education system is too big, too much costly overhead. The system does not have to answer to accountability of results of their education effort.

It would appear a major leadership change and system overhaul is in order. Throwing more taxpayers' dollars at the problem may not be the answer.

If the state's higher ed system was a business in the free market they would not survive showing the results in the survey. Their stock would rate with Enron! ' Don Basey, Eagle Point

Thankful for my country

I am thankful for my country because: the diversity in people and religions, the government and freedom.

The diversity in our country is very unique. Most places usually have few different kinds of religions, and few different types of people.

Since we have many different kinds of people and religions in our country we are very diverse. I like that our government helps Third World countries when they are in need of food and supplies.

The best part of our country is freedom. Freedom of speech, religion and press. This is what makes up the United States of America. ' David J. Dobrin, age 11, Medford

A huge money wheel

Bush's only real accomplishment so far is a huge money wheel. He crams the wealth of America inside 'trillions worth of natural resources, tax breaks, and outright subsidies go spinning to corporate CEOs. Hoping for more largesse, the CEOs put in a percentage and spin it to the GOP election fund.

This explains repeated efforts to sacrifice The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, national forests and other resources. But it's not about jobs, the economy, energy independence or forest health.

Bush is desperate to avoid another ignominious election debacle. His everything-goes, National Heritage Sale is designed only to collect almost unlimited funds for a massive ad campaign during Election 2004. The amounts of cash spiraling in are unprecedented.

The Founding Fathers could not foresee corruption on such a grand scale. They counted on candidates to have integrity and on voters to make intelligence choices.

That it undercuts the economy, and the foundations of democracy itself, seems almost irrelevant.

On the bright side, Bush's big wheel guarantees Election 2004 will be a fabulous television spectacular with unequaled advertising. It will also be a significant IQ test for America, determining whether voters are dumbed-down enough to extend Bush's corrupt regime. ' Inez Pecovsky, Cave Junction

Who wants to be dictator?

The U.S. is in an unconventional war with terrorism. The country is debating a conventional war against the infamous dictator of Iraq, Saddam Hussein.

This dictator has done horrible things to his own people and those in neighboring countries, but is Saddam a threat to our national security? This fearful prospect is resonating as the eminent reason to bomb Saddam when there are other motivating reasons.

A conventional war against Saddam would increase the budget of the military. Certain people, corporations and industry with vested interests in the military-industrial complex would prosper.

The people would rally around their commander-in-chief. That support would show in the polls and possibly the voting booths in the midterm elections.

Bush could regain control of all three branches of government. He could have a mandate to dictate the anti-democratic agenda of the New World Order. Bush once said, It's my turn to be dictator. ' Richard Altig, Talent

Lied to the community

1. How unwisely can The Wiselys, The director of PERS and the Medford School Board act? Morally, ethically and legally! All these people have lied to the voters of the community!

2. I know of six generations in my family and three generations of my wife's family who are or have been teachers. I have never in my life been so shocked at such unprofessional antics. I can assure the school board members that I will never vote for any of them ever again.

3. I have always assumed that the furor over retired pay was largely by those who dislike government employees entirely. I can assure Rep. Patridge that I will listen to him more carefully on PERS in the future. ' Barney T. Watson, Medford

Airline a good addition

I had an opportunity to take an America West flight from Rogue Valley International-Medford Airport to Phoenix, Ariz. The plane took off, heading north and banked to the east.

We were east of Roxy Ann, and it seemed strange to look out the right side window and see the east side of Roxy Ann. The plane then flew over Howard Prairie, Reno, Las Vegas and into Phoenix. This flying time took approximately two hours and 15 minutes.

As a frequent business flier to Phoenix, this trip sure beat taking Horizon from Medford to Portland, then changing planes to Phoenix, or taking United to San Francisco and then changing planes to Phoenix.

Thanks, America West, for coming to Southern Oregon. Also, thanks to the government officials who helped make it possible for this to happen. ' Dick Gordon, Medford

War will be short

I have just one thing to say to all the hand-wringing apologists who bemoan America's pending war against Iraq and that, in the words of General McAuliffe when asked to surrender during the Battle of the Bulge, is, Nuts.

It has been our recent-past responses to terrorists that bring us to where we are today. Had we reacted more strongly to the terrorist attacks in Beirut, Saudi Arabia, Kenya, Tanzania and elsewhere, then in all likelihood the World Trade Center attack would not have happened. The forces of evil took it as a lack of resolve that we did little or nothing in response to these attacks. It is now time to disabuse them of that notion.

As to the war with Iraq, I do agree with Powell, Lugar, Baker, Kissinger and others, that we need to plan our armed intervention carefully, get world opinion largely onside, and have plans in place for the management and transition of a post-Hussein Iraq. Once strategic planning and logistics are in place, then we need to move quickly to get the job done.

I am betting this will be a short war. ' Doug Forsyth, Ashland

Election letters

Richardson brings out best

My daughter loves soccer. Part of the reason she does is because her first coach was Dennis Richardson.

He was positive and encouraging with my daughter and the other girls on the team and ' even when they did something wrong ' he never embarrassed them.

He brings the best out of people. I trust him and hope he wins this election. ' Andrew Kemp, Gold Hill

Vote for Gilmour

This November, as a life-long Republican, I will be voting for a Democrat for the first time. Dave Gilmour is running against Ric Holt for county commissioner and Dr. Gilmour deserves our vote regardless of party. He is a man with common sense and integrity we should expect in all our representatives.

As a Central Point School Board member, he offered up solutions that not only would have benefited our students, but save taxpayers' money at the same time. He spent time in the schools getting to know the teachers and the challengers they face. This is just one way Dr. Gilmour has spent his life in service to others.

It is time for a change and we have an opportunity to make a positive difference in the lives of Jackson County citizens. Please vote for Dave Gilmour for county commissioner, a man of integrity, service and common sense! ' Betty Hiltz, White City

Medford police neutral

I am the current president of the Medford Police Association, a charitable organization whose members are all full-time employees of the Medford Police Department. Our association has become aware of some Winters for Sheriff campaign signs that claim the Medford police support Mike Winters in his bid to become Jackson County Sheriff.

This letter is written to set the record straight: the Medford Police Association does not make political endorsements; therefore it does not support either candidate in this race.

I also know that because the Medford Police Department is a government agency it is prevented by state law and city policy from making political enforsements. If individual police department employees have a preference for one candidate over another, they are free to express those views, on their off-duty time. ' Steve Edson, Medford Police Association

Davidson for change

The five recent special sessions of the Oregon

Legislature are proof that our elected representatives are not up to

the task of solving the state's problems. Those who represented the people of Oregon in this fiasco should be turned out, and we should start over with a fresh slate of representatives who will dedicate themselves to solving Oregon's budget problems.

Medford needs someone in Salem who will help break this logjam of partisan politics. That person should be Barbara Davidson.

Barbara understands the issues, especially the needs of our schools. Vote for change; vote for Barbara Davidson. ' Orville Leao, Medford

Hallet is right choice

Political campaigns usually mean that the public needs to brace itself for grandiose claims from candidates. For this reason, I find it refreshing and inspiring to find a candidate like John Hallett running for county commissioner.

Here is a candidate who leads by example. Mr. Hallett advocates improved health care for all. Mr. Hallett saw to it that his elderly father received a quadruple heart bypass and has now taken on the task of caring for him.

Mr. Hallett supports economic growth by the development of small businesses. Mr. Hallett owns a landscaping company and is working to develop this business.

During a recent Rosemary and Garth show, it appears that Mr. Hallett's opponent has resorted to the use of defamatory accusations. Commissioner Ric Holt used these same false allegations during his campaign back in the early 1990s against Hallett.

My vote lies with integrity. John Hallett's the right choice. ' Duane Stanley, Central Point

Vote for Winters

Jackson County has a tremendous law enforcement team, but it needs to be better managed. I am voting for Mike Winters to become sheriff because I can count on him to provide a higher level of service, especially in rural areas where it is urgently needed.

Mike has an impressive public service record and has earned an outstanding reputation in the business community. I believe Mike has the ability and tenacity to dramatically improve the sheriff's department in a short amount of time.

I have watched him direct million-dollar projects where he solved complex problems through good communication. As a result, he saved builders and property owners a great deal of money.

I believe Mike will eliminate waste and make sure every dollar is counted for and used in the best way. Please vote for Mike Winters, the time for change is now. ' Stan Deupree, Eagle Point

Support John Hallett

I have known John Hallett for 11 years. I watched him perform community service as a Medford city councilman for Ward 1.

His honest representation of his constituents was a high priority for him. He sometimes took a position that was contrary to the majority of the council. That was because he believed that it was not in the best interests of his constituents or the city as a whole.

That is what being a representative of the people is all about. That is exactly why I support John.

Jack Walker has a track record of not always listening to his constituents. If you want someone that will listen and give honest representation to the people of Jackson County, join me in electing John Hallett to county commissioner, position 1. ' Jim Key, Medford

Maxwell has proven worth

In her own unique way, Shayne Maxwell has proven her worth to communities in Southern Oregon.

Most people first remember hearing about Shayne in the news report when she worked to get a Rogue Valley calling region so that local phone rates could be reduced. Before that she assisted in gaining the release of the Erickson Air Crane employees who were being held hostage in Ecuador.

We know her best as a friend who cares deeply about public education and who will also be a friend of the schools when she is elected. As a businesswoman, she is familiar with the needs of the small business owner and will be reachable and pro-active when she is elected to the Oregon House. ' Bruce and Alice Matheny, Applegate

Voting for Bradbury

Will voters really support Gordon Smith for U.S. Senate after he has done so much to frustrate Oregon voters' twice-affirmed desire to have physician-assisted suicide as an option? I thought Smith supported states' rights, but apparently only when it is convenient.

Bradbury has my vote. ' Connie Battaile, Ashland

Voting for Mejia

I have had the pleasure of knowing Lorenzo Mejia for nearly 15 years. I quickly came to respect, appreciate and rely upon his abilities and dedication to our community.

As an employee of the criminal justice system, a member of a law-enforcement family and mostly as a member of this community, I feel strongly that laws must be enforced and those who break them held responsible. Judge Mejia has proven he will not only hold offenders accountable but will do so with fairness, respect and sincerity.

I am proud to call Lorenzo friend and honored to call him Judge. Please join me in voting for the honorable Lorenzo Mejia for Circuit Court judge. ' Kelli Hope, Medford

Measure not the answer

I encourage everyone to carefully digest the contents of Ballot Measure 23 that creates a health care finance plan for medically necessary services by increasing personal income tax to nearly 17 percent and adding a payroll tax of 11.5 percent.

It is absurd to expect this measure, which would guarantee payment for message therapy, herbalists, music therapists, and marriage counselors that are not basic health care to do anything but cause employers to close their doors or leave the state and create an impossible to manage bureaucracy. This is not the answer. ' Mark Johnson, Rogue River

No on Measure 23

While this measure sounds like the answer to all that ails our health care system, it is just the opposite. The state income tax for many people will rise to 17 percent. Many employers will face 11.5 percent payroll taxes.

Many taxpayers will leave the state. Businesses will choose to locate elsewhere. It will be difficult to attract quality health care professionals to a socialized medicine environment. The measure is bad for Oregon. Please read Measure 23 carefully. ' Cheryl Patten, Rogue River