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Letters to the editor

Lower than normal temperatures in Medford, massive snowstorms in the Midwest, snow in Arizona — all these conditions have been cited as proof that global warming doesn't exist. Consider, then, the dilemma of global-warming deniers when confronted with the reality of a propane-burning refrigerator: heat in one part of the unit produces cold air in another. How can this be? Obviously, propane refrigerators must be a hoax. — Bill Sherwood, Phoenix

It is shamefully stupid to construct a fourth "big-box" Walmart store in the Rogue Valley (particularly during this depression). However, it is easy to see that any ruling group (the Medford City Council) insensitive enough to allow the expenditure of $47,000 to stand three hideous aluminum tubes upright in front of a civic building, is also capable of allowing this fourth Walmart store to sell more cheap, ugly merchandise to those in this valley who are basically ignorant of exactly what humanitarian principles are trampled upon by this retail behemoth ... all over the world.

They just want to buy "stuff" as cheaply as possible. Oh, well. So much for the Golden Rule in our presumably religious Rogue Valley. — Duane Sample, Jacksonville

The facts of the impact of Measure 66, Oregon's personal income tax increase, are simple: If Measure 66 passes, the first $2,400 of unemployment received will not be taxable for every taxpayer receiving unemployment. If Measure 66 fails, the unemployment exemption will not be applicable.

Beyond the unemployment credit, if Measure 66 passes, there will be no change for single taxpayers with a taxable income, after deductions, of $125,000 or less, and no change for married taxpayers, filing jointly, and filers who qualify for head of household with taxable income of $250,000 or less.

Single taxpayers will see an increase in their taxes for any amount over $125,000 at an annual rate of $18 per $1,000 taxable, up to $250,000, and then at a rate of $20 per $1,000 taxable. Married and head of household filers will see an increase in their taxes at the same rates but the trigger amount is $250,000 for the lower rate and $500,000 for the higher rate.

If a taxpayer has a taxable income of $25,000 per month, $300,000 per year, the increase in annual Oregon taxes is $900 total for filers who are married or can claim head of household. For single taxpayers making $300,000 the increase is $2,320. — David Argetsinger, Medford

Regarding Mr. Mak's letter about the Navy Seals facing "a court-martial after allegedly roughing up an al-Qaida terrorist." He apparently was horrified that we are required to follow the same laws as anyone else in the world about the treatment of military prisoners. During the entire torture situations at Abu Graib and Guantanamo, we (yes, we) broke the laws of the Geneva Convention which guarantee that prisoners be treated with respect as we try to understand why they are trying to kill us.

This may sound like a world turned upside down to Mr. Mak, but beating people up, arranging them in artful naked pyramids, and pouring water down their throats to simulate drowning has proven that these methods do not produce truthful facts vital to our understanding of the enemy. Trust over time does.

That said, these methods of earning the trust of enemies, not punching them in the nose, came from trained professional military men, not women. However, if he would like to attribute feminization as a sign of intelligence, thank you very much. — Kim Cower, Talent