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Placement shows bias

The Mail Tribune-generated front page headline Thursday, Sept. 9: Guardsman Bush disobeyed orders.

Sept. 16, buried back in section 5B, Rather admits problems with Bush documents.

Yes, I truly believe the Mail Tribune thinks it is a fair and unbiased news reporting agency, and adheres to the old adage, Don't let the facts get in the way of a good story. ' Pete Brown, Central Point

Who took it?

A couple of nights ago someone took my Keep Kids Alive Drive 25 sign off my front lawn. Do you think it was a Republican or Democrat? ' Lydia Norris, Ashland

The politics of terror

I viewed the Republican convention with interest. I wanted to hear about Bush's agenda for his second term, should he be elected.

Did I hear any of this? The economy? Jobs? I coined it the convention of fear. They repeatedly deny the charge that they're exploiting 9/11, but how can they continue this with a clear conscience?

— They held their convention in New York, which votes overwhelmingly Democratic. The theme to every speech was the war on terror. They continue to tie the war in Iraq to 9/11, which has been disproved by two different bipartisan commissions.

This week Cheney says, if you vote Kerry, we will be attacked again, you will die, and it will be your fault. Outrageous! I am frightened all right ' of what our country will resemble after four more years! Do we want to be governed by the politics of terror? I'll vote John Kerry. ' S. Eaton, Medford

Kerry strong enough

I have known Bush is a scary man ever since I first heard him speak. Nothing is scarier than an intelligence-challenged megalomaniac; a stranger to truth-telling with a false god sitting on his shoulder.

Kerry may not be all we had hoped for in a leader of the free world, but he sure is operating with all his brain cells intact! I don't need perfection ' good enough is, well, good enough! If I ever feel my political enthusiasm flagging, I just think Supreme Court Justice Ashcroft.

I expect people to accept me, warts and all, so I am willing to work and vote for Kerry. He can do the job.

My greatest concern is why he would want to do the job of cleaning up after Bush, which may make Kerry's Vietnam courage under fire look like a stroll through Lithia Park! But he is strong enough for the job! ' Noreen Hulteen, Ashland

Putting us at risk

Vice President Dick Cheney warned that the country would be at risk of a terror attack if it made 'the wrong choice' in November, says the New York Times. For once I am in total agreement with the vice president; the 'wrong choice' will certainly put us at greater risk.

Consider how the Bush administration has:

Alienated the United States and turned world opinion against us.

Told the terrorists to 'bring it on', which they are doing with increasing success and frequency.

Turned Iraq from a non-threat into a haven for terrorists and anti-American factions.

This administration has isolated our country and stirred up a hornet's nest; now they insist that only they are capable of protecting us. I find this reminiscent of the kind of 'protection' racket portrayed in old mobster films. Nice country you got here, it'd be a shame if something happened to it. ' Joe Meadows, Ashland

Letter unfair to MT

Bill Bartlett's letter to the editor is simply unfair to the Mail Tribune, and misses the larger and more important issue by focusing on political partisanship.

How I read the story on the taking of Kerry and Bush signs was a personal account of how individuals in our community can feel violated and intimidated when others do not respect their right to openly express their political views. It brought home that when we see someone that expresses a view different from ours that instead of immediately attacking the person, we should jointly respect and celebrate the right that is given to us all to be able to speak our minds freely.

This is the real story; thank you, MT, for putting this important message on the front page. ' Richard Holt, Ashland

Doesn't want Kerry

If anyone watched Kerry speak at the Democratic National Convention they would see how he would mention something that he would do in office which Bush is already doing.

Also, why hasn't Kerry got a bill passed since Bush took office? It is because he says one thing he is going to do, then changes his mind at the last minute.

Do we really want a person like this in office? I know I don't. ' S. Sandberg, Medford.

Vote no on 35

Insurance companies want us to think that doctors are leaving Oregon to avoid paying high medical malpractice premiums. But I just read about a study by Public Citizen showing that the number of doctors in Oregon is actually increasing. Measure 35 won't help doctors but it will limit our rights by changing the Constitution. Voters should not be swayed by the insurance industry's slick campaign. Please join me in voting no on 35. ' Mary Scaife, Ashland

Bush twins normal

Krista Singh Henning thinks that because the Bush twins have been publicly seen having a good old time at nightclubs across the country that they are dancing on the graves of those killed in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Since when has being young and going out been something of a crime? True, these girls are young women, and they are acting like it by having fun. Does this reflect their father?

Maybe Ms. Henning should think back to a time when she herself was a young woman. Did her attitudes and actions completely reflect that which her parents were or had taught her? Perhaps Ms. Henning's condescending attitude reflects deeper bitterness toward the president himself, not at his daughters. Perhaps she should aim that hatred toward something more productive, like getting the vote out to young people, not by complaining of being disgusted by young people doing normal young people things. ' Jennifer Scroggins, White City

Bumper sticker

How's this for a new bumper sticker:

Bush lied; others died. ' Doug Mitchell, Ashland

Radical and secretive

The hidden Bush agenda is infinitely more radical and secretive than the public realizes.

First, his re-election will mean that America is officially behind his unilateralist, pre-emptive strike foreign policy and all of his ultra-right-wing, fundamentalist, religiosity-driven domestic policies. The reality is so extreme that most people will not believe it.

As for the Iraq war that is going so badly, Iraq is only the first step in the larger war to democratize the whole Middle East. But beyond that, although still mostly under wraps, is his grand strategy for U.S. global domination.

Details are found in a document entitled Rebuilding America's Defenses: Strategies, Forces And Resources For A New Century, written in September 2000 and signed off by Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz and others.

This American-dominated world peace will require a 17 to 26 percent increase in defense spending and permanent war-time footing. ' Harry L. Cook, Ashland

Bully in the pulpit

Only after it becomes a last resort, the decision to go to war requires extreme caution, wisdom, and input from every possible source of information. Bush disrespected this formula.

After 20 years, Doctors Without Borders has left Iraq for their own safety, after the Bush administration made it a safer place to be. Mission accomplished? WMDs? Found Jesus? Enlisted without daddy's help? Oh, puh-lease. Hiding behind a bigger Bush kept him out of Vietnam, and keeps him in power.

Our &

36;240 billion surplus becoming a &

36;422 billion debt matches Bush's private business failures. We cannot afford Bush's prompting terrorists with bring it on and spending our grandchildren's money irresponsibly.

Bush's Robin Hood reversal tax break shows his concern for only — percent of the American people; his compassionate conservative declaration ' another lie. When I say adios to Mr. Bush in November is when I will say, Mission Accomplished! ' Hal B. Anthony, Grants Pass

More war years

The PBS NewsHour regularly features a silent tribute to the U.S. soldiers who have perished in Iraq. It is heart-wrenching to view their young faces, realizing that over 1,000 have now died in a war that more and more Americans feel was unjustified. Nearly 7,000 have suffered terrible injuries, including amputation and emotional trauma.

George Bush misled us by invading Iraq in the name of terrorism. We now know there were no WMDs, nor was there an Iraqi connection to 9/11.

If the American people re-elect Bush, we will continue to witness the wasting of human lives and resources. We will continue to see painful pictures of fallen Americans (though we are denied viewing their flag-draped coffins).

We will get four more years. We will also get more war years. ' Liz Vesecky, Ashland

Economic democracy

We used to read the term economic democracy. It told us that political democracy was meaningless in a two-caste society of haves and have-nots.

In Iraq we wished to bring democracy; the opportunity was there: plenty of work to be done, men recently out of the Army and reconstruction money voted by Congress. Instead, American companies, with labor imported at a premium, against odds of terrain, climate and language plod on. Masses of unemployed, disenfranchised Iraqi young men seem to not want part of, or trust the proffered democracy.

Rupert Murdoch's press doesn't mention economic democracy, but should not our elected authorities know more about democracy than the word? Abroad ' or at home? ' Hans H. Stroo, Medford

Reject Measure 34

Voters of Southern Oregon: Be aware that Measure 34, if approved, would generate adverse effects on Oregon's economy and our ability to manage Oregon's assets.

Measure 34, heavily financed by out- of-state organizations, has drawn the scrutiny of the State Election Department for possible violations of Oregon's election laws.

Who wants 50/60 percent of the scientifically-managed, vigorous Tillamook and Clatsop forests off-limits to sustained-yield logging?

Why should we be concerned? The economic impact of reducing revenues statewide to schools and local governments conservatively estimated at &

36;30 million annually! Reduction in fire fighting funds! Unemployment! Fires in unmanaged forests. The aggravation of Oregon's assets managed at the ballot box by out-of-state dollars.

State Forest Management Plans passed the scrutiny of citizen's committees, public meetings, written citizen comments, as a result the concepts of Measure 34 were rejected!

Reject Measure 34; vote no! ' Bob Higgins, Medford

Actions louder than words

C.W. Smith had a secure and good-paying job at the sheriff's office, but he gave it up to run for county commissioner. When asked why, he said that he could do more for the citizens of Jackson County as a commissioner than he could in his current position.

It was simply stated, but proves that actions speak louder than words. Smith wants to see change, so he made some changes himself.

Obviously, Smith is a man that will make decisions for the county based on what's right, not what's easy. This leads me to believe he won't compromise his beliefs for a few votes. As a result, he will get mine! ' Michael Pronesti, Medford

Focus on issues

It is time to leave the rhetoric of the conventions and the Vietnam era behind and focus on the issues our country faces today.

I urge everyone to watch the debates and really listen carefully to what each candidate is saying. There is a huge difference between the two main candidates.

Who is better able to unite the country and the world and finally address the enormous challenges and problems that lie before us? Think about it, and vote in November. ' Katie Ortlip, Ashland

I don't feel protected

Bush hasn't protected anybody from terrorists. Terrible 9/11 events happened on his watch regardless how apologists excuse him.

He fought installing Homeland Security; flip-flopped to appoint an ineffectual director then shorted their funding. He swore dead-or-alive war on Osama, proven perpetrator behind 9/11. Three failed years later he never mentions Osama but he's convinced millions of Americans it was really Saddam.

Pre-emptive invasion of Iraq inflamed new terrorism worldwide. Bush stonewalls significant overhaul of U.S. intelligence. Fortunately even many in his own party demand improved security there.

Bush's boast that he's kept us safe from terrorists reminds me of the man sitting on a Central Park bench tearing up bits of paper and strewing them around. A passing stranger asks, Why are you tearing up paper like that?

Bench sitter: To keep away the tigers.

Stranger: But there aren't any tigers here.

Bench sitter: See? It works. ' G.E. Myers, Jacksonville

Don't be fooled

Recently I received a call from supporters of Measure 37 stating their measure is about government compensation for taking someone's property. Don't be fooled, this is a complete misrepresentation.

What 37 is about is a few people and corporations that qualify want money from us because state law says they can't do anything they want with their land.

The major problem is there is no provision in the measure for raising the money they insist we give them. Obviously, taxes would have to be raised and since corporations have lobbyists and individual taxpayers don't, guess who probably will get stuck with more taxes.

Another option for paying special interests not to lower our standard of living is further cuts in budgets to schools, senior services, emergency services, neighborhood planning, and other services that protect quality of life.

Measure 37 is a poorly written initiative that will hurt us all. ' Steve Williams, Williams

Give hope a chance

I am amazed that people actually believe the fear tactics and political propaganda from the Bush campaign. If you want relevant information about how this administration will govern and conduct themselves, simply look at the last four years. They have never been accountable to anyone but the wealthy and the religious right.

John Kerry may not be the panacea , but he's an intelligent, caring man who wants to take this country in a different direction. This really is the most important election you will ever cast a ballot in ' give hope a chance. ' Jean Strong, Medford

Questions answered

The Republican convention answered many questions. Was any part of going to war a mistake? ' No. Are they sorry about the thousands of dead? ' No. Should America continue to act like a paranoid bully? ' Yes. Prepare for more unnecessary wars.

Bush listed all the things he would do if he were president, and says Kerry wants to pay for his plans by taxing the rich, but the rich dodge paying, so the middle class will pay. What? Isn't Bush the guy who gives tax breaks to the rich? I wonder if he is ever aware of his astounding hypocrisy.

Cheney is playing the fear card by saying that if America makes the wrong choice by electing Kerry we will be hit again by terrorists. But wait, weren't we hit on 9/11 while Bush and Cheney were in office and were even warned in a clear memo? Unbelievable. ' Darryl Edington, Eagle Point

Kerry take note

Obviously, Cheney has it wrong. The devastating terrorist attacks will begin if Bush is re-elected president, because Bush is detested in most parts of the world ' but he is especially hated in the Middle Eastern nations.

And, don't you all remember when Bush was running for president the first time and was behind in the polls, he emphatically stated that he paid no attention to polls ' they didn't mean a thing; so Sen. Kerry, please take note. ' Alma Jefferson, Medford

Vote for Buckley

We encourage you to cast your vote for Peter Buckley for state representative.

Oregon's budget difficulties will be best handled by informed, hard-working legislators who understand the importance of listening to each other and working together. Peter fits this profile perfectly.

He understands the mutually supportive relationship of a healthy state economy with good public schools and safe communities, and will use his leadership role to improve all three. He is good with details and does his homework. He is a thoughtful listener and a capable debater.

If you want someone who will work for stable funding for schools and higher education, an improved business environment, and better health services, please join us in voting for Peter Buckley. ' Al and Barbara Blaszak, Ashland

Moderate Republicans

Moderate Republicans are concerned. They consider the current administration radical, not adhering to Republican principles.

True Republicans don't believe in huge deficits, they believe in less government, not more. So why are neocons wanting to poke into our bedrooms and doctor's offices? Why are neoconservatives eroding our civil rights? Moderate Republicans realize that philosophies so radical will fracture their party.

Neocon picketers outside the Republican convention were filmed belittling the moderates inside. The protesters called those inside RINOS (Republicans In Name Only). If RINOS don't comply with our beliefs, then we want them out of the party, a picketer proclaimed.

Many moderate Republicans are voting for Kerry to repudiate the direction their party is taking. For those who cannot fathom voting outside your party, there's another option to show disfavor with the radical policies of this administration. Write in the name of another Republican, someone moderate, perhaps John McCain. ' Patricia A. Rickert, Williams