Our Oregon politicians are now begging at the White House for more money, or is it federal aid, to keep Oregon going. But at the same time, Oregon's Gov. Ted Kulongoski has two lawsuits filed against President Bush not to start any logging.
I just can't find any words that explain this political mess we have in Oregon that the Mail Tribune would print. The good news is that Oregon politicians must have agreed that working stiffs in the other 49 states will love paying more federal taxes so we can watch our Oregon trees fall over dead naturally. — Tom Rolie, Medford
Forest Supervisor Scott Conroy's guest opinion, "Truth was among the casualties of the Biscuit fire," needs clarification. Conroy's "supervisor" title is dependent upon a former timber corporation lobbyist — now high-ranking administration bureaucrat — who dictates Forest Service policy: It slants the Conroy "truth."
Some truths: Conroy ignored a record 23,000 pro-conservation public comments which favored leaving Biscuit's old-growth and roadless areas alone to recover naturally. He ignored scientific studies indicating these areas of the Biscuit would recover best if left to recover naturally. That natural recovery was very much under way until cut short by the destructive salvage logging of the so-called "Biscuit Recovery Project."
More truth: In the sparse soil of the Biscuit, wimpy 20-year-old farm trees grew barely tall as a man. They burned much quicker and hotter than natural forest.
Truth: A 500-year-old naturally-evolving ecosystem, with all its mutually supporting plants and animals in place, takes 500 years to create.
The truth: Conroy's Biscuit policy helped destroy the integrity of one of the last great wild places on the West Coast while "coincidentally" enhancing the bottom line of some major corporations.
It is ironic that Forest Supervisor Conroy now emerges unscathed as truth's self-appointed personal spokesman. — Pat Patterson, Central Point
The Tribune recently ran a feature before the Josephine County levy vote and quoted me inaccurately. I actually said jail and prosecutors should have a higher priority than patrols because there is no deterrent with the existing catch-and-release system. A taxing district could be formed for county patrols, since city residents are already taxed for patrols within city limits. With new property taxes piling up, the effect of the proposed county levy on downtown Grants Pass could be disastrous, as rents will not support the ever-increasing tax load.
Also mentioned was that my business, Blue Moon Antiques, had been broken into three times, and a photo showed a life-size John Wayne with the caption "John Wayne is keeping watch on the store." Not mentioned was that Blue Moon receives city patrols, maintains sophisticated security, and in 20 years, no one has ever gained access and then removed or damaged anything.
The sheriff is sworn to protect and serve county residents. With the levy failure, county officials need to find a workable alternative. Maybe they should cut areas other than public safety first, or even look to the successful model of popular Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio. Don't punish the voters! — Ward Warren, Blue Moon Antiques & Collectibles, Grants Pass
Now I've heard everything. I have heard that people don't need libraries anymore because we "all" have Internet access at home.
I've heard that this supposed access is equivalent to the thousands of books collected by librarians for over 100 years.
I've heard that our new buildings are palaces. Palace: (n.) A pleasant, light-filled space with room for books and people.
I've heard that we should cut hours and librarians. Cutting hours makes libraries inaccessible to many and makes a quiet, comfortable place noisy and crowded. To do away with librarians is to dismiss the impressive education of these professionals. Public librarians have a master's degree, some have Ph.Ds.
"When I was a kid, we had a tiny, one-room library, and that was good enough for me." My hometown also had a tiny, one-room library, and the town voted to support expansion.
"I don't use the library; why should I pay for it?" People who say this have indeed used public libraries: As children, for college research, and as parents. Those libraries were founded, served by librarians and supported by taxpayers.
I've heard everything except a good reason to withhold a service that has such value for so many. — Jodi French, Ashland