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Patients running the asylum

In a time when city budgets are stretched to the seams and existing agencies and programs are being cut into nonexistence, how can the city fathers even consider giving away valuable city property and commit up to &

36;6,000 a month to maintain it? Talk about about the patients running the asylum. ' Ron Unis, Medford

Thanks for editorial

Thank you for the editorial on the necessity of cycling safely though the Crater Lake and McAndrews intersection.

Future plans should look at bikes using pedestrian paths or bike lanes created by narrower auto lanes without taking a wide swath of land from the Providence property. Hopefully, the biking community will have an input in the intersection plans for their safety. ' Porter Lombard, Medford

Out of respect

The falsehoods about Iraq foisted on the world by this court-appointed president to justify putting our working-class children at risk has no equal in war history. No WMD, no nukes, no Saddam. No daring rescue, but rather use and abuse of the beautiful, courageous Pvt. Jessica Lynch.

The flag of this war is dirty, torn and tattered. Out of respect, on this Memorial Day, we should burn it. ' George McCartin, Jacksonville

We don't need Wal-Mart

I could not agree more with the guest opinion of Wendy Siporen appearing May 14. The Rogue Valley does not need another Wal-Mart. It will be another loss to our local economy, including harm done to local businesses and a decrease in jobs. Not to mention the issue of supporting a company with questionable ethics in regards to their buying practices and employee compensation policies. Medford needs more community support, not less.

Finally, adding another mega-chain store to the already crowded South Medford shopping area will only increase traffic and congestion concerns. Are the pennies that you save at Wal-Mart, and other discount retailers, really worth the high price to the community? ' C. Elliott, Medford

Why should addicts get drugs?

The elderly and disabled worked all their lives in order for the state to take away prescription drugs and now doctor visits. But the latest article on heroin addicts who can't get the state to pay for their methadone and will again turn to crime ' isn't drug addiction voluntary, while old age and disability are not? Why should addicts get drugs when no one else can? ' Kathy Pabst, Medford

Proud of viaduct job

I recently wrote to the Mail Tribune and the Oregon Department of Transportation, basically complaining about the turtle pace of projects undertaken by ODOT.

I would like to publicly say that I am proud of the department's efforts and accomplishments on the Medford I-5 viaduct. However, this does not change my excitement (or lack thereof) around the up and coming (or is it?) South Medford interchange, but it is a step in the right direction. ' Jesse Riley, Medford

Tax mushroom hunters

What are you in for?

I killed 16 people, how about you?

I didn't get my mushroom permit and didn't cut them in half and took a little more than one gallon.

Are you kidding me?

Mushroom hunting used to be a family outing. It's kind of an Easter egg hunt for morels. Now we have hundreds of annual commercial hunters who pay &

36;2 for a 10-day permit. They make cash money and leave their camps so filthy that paid Forest Service employees have to wear hazard suits to clean up the camps.

People who have lived here all of their lives now hunt and are in fear of being shot by a commercial picker or arrested by the Forest Service for picking a mushroom on federal land that real tax payers own.

My suggestion is that we all get &

36;2 permits, we rape the forest of all the mushrooms, we keep them for ourselves so the commercial buyers have none to sell to Japan.

Commercial pickers are paid cash. Shouldn't taxes be taken out? The Quartz fire produced over &

36;100,000 in picked mushrooms, no taxes. How come? ' Jim Bailey, Medford

Are we being conned?

Are we being conned into still thinking the money we spend buying lottery tickets is being given to the schools? Just what part of the pie is being used to help schools?

Prove to me is there is still any truth to this grand plan the lottery system had promised to the public that a certain percent would be used on schools. Then I will purchase them or I will stop wasting my money on buying any more of them!' Rose Cates, Central Point

Time to get out of U.N.

It's time! Time to get out of the U.N. The execrable behavior of France, Germany and Russia, among others, points out that they do not view the world and prioritize needs the same way we do. Even though we have unselfishly sacrificed to save their nations while asking nothing in return, their petty jealousies and memories of faded glory preempt cooperation.

The concept of one world is becoming pervasive. The problem is that under one world the U.N. supersedes our U.S. Constitution. U.S. sovereignty would be dissolved, erasing all those rights we hold so dear. Given the protests of the Patriot Act, we're astonished at the level of credence the one-worlders are willing to give the U.N. Do they really believe that the Constitution would continue to carry any weight when subjugated to the U.N?

The U.N. functions, at best, as a sort of global United Way with the same malfeasance and misappropriation of funds. The actual and potential corruption is enormous.

Finally, should the law-abiding superpower U.S. cease to be such, the world as we know it would disintegrate into uncivilized darkness from which it may never recover, certainly not in our lifetimes. ' Tom and Carol Moeller, Medford

Arm the Iraqis

It is with shock and dismay that I read that American armed forces are disarming the freedom-loving Iraqi citizens of Baghdad. Doesn't the U.S. military realize that the very basis of democracy is the right to bear arms? No nation can be safe from scofflaws or a despotic regime unless the streets can be turned into free-fire zones by armed-to-the-teeth citizens.

Please contact your local lobbyist to urge her to pressure President Top Gun to immediately embed special NRA teams into Iraq to hand out Freedom Kits. These kits will contain copies of the Second Amendment ' plus relevant case law to explain what it means ' NRA membership forms, a framed photo of Charlton Heston and an assortment pack of ammunition in the most commonly available street calibers. Point out to your lobbyist that these Freedom Kits can be paid for by further tax cuts to the upper — percent of the wealthy in America.

Help the Iraqi citizens maintain a credible deterrent effect against the occupying forces currently trying to impose a foreign government on them. Insist upon Iraqi Second Amendment rights. Do it today! ' John Gaffey, Ashland

BLM ignores citizens

George Sexton's lesson on BLM land mismanagement on May 15 really resonated with me. The BLM continues to target these beautiful old-growth forests in the back country, jeopardizing our clean water (Kelsey Whisky is a good example), while doing very little to protect our homes and communities. I am convinced the BLM does not want to involve the public in their work as well.

A couple of months ago, I sent the BLM a letter requesting some of their published documents so that I could participate in the NEPA process and encourage them to thin around homes and communities. Not only did they not send the published documents; they did not even acknowledge my request.

The BLM will continue to illegally ignore citizens until Congressman Greg Walden pushes through the horrible legislation (House Resolution 1904) he is sponsoring in Congress that will provide for 1,000-acre clearcuts and prohibit the public from

participating at all. Then the BLM will really celebrate and continue to ignore all citizens. ' Diane Pasquini, Ashland

Too bad stakes are high

It's stuff of comedy; too bad the stakes are so high. A writer castigates Molly for her conclusions concerning WMDs. In replacement, he gives a theory that cannot be construed from the facts at hand. He's offended that his theory isn't just arbitrarily assigned as fact, end of discussion. He should wonder why people like me look at him with the same repugnance we give those who'd drink poison Kool-Aid, or swallow fistfuls of downers then put their head in a plastic bag, as an obeisance of faith to their devoted leaders.

Where do you people get your information? Oiuja board? Channeling aliens? The last Pentagon revival (just a little hillbilly music and a bucket of rattlers away from total fanaticism, my friends!)? Imaginings? Sorry, but no. The history is in as to government bio-testing citizenry, experiments on field soldiers. The lies justifying armed conflict is standard Operation Alibi, although revealed after such presidents have squandered fat pensions, lived in retirement paradises and kept with the best medical care, to leave for the Blessed redeemer one step ahead of the hangman's rope. The history of deceitful administrations has been demonstrated. This current one demonstrates an unjustifiable fear of light. ' Ryk Tompkins, Central Point

Thanks for opinion

On May 14, Wendy Siporen of Talent did a guest opinion article on another Wal-Mart. She made a lot of valuable points and hopefully has converted some shoppers away from the greedy giant.

Just think, it's the number one Fortune 500 company and yet many of its employees don't have health care or decent wages. Yes, its low prices may be a boon for consumers. But what about all the retailers who have to cut staff, benefits and wages to compete? Thanks again, Wendy! ' Jack Long, Eagle Point