No budget for libraries. Shortfall of budget for schools. Always funds for national searches for replacements for city and county positions. Six months or longer for national search to find replacement for McGeary.

Guess we have surplus monies for airplanes tickets, hotels and, in some cases, relocation funds. I'm sure we have people here in the valley to fill these positions. — Jack Shaffer, Medford

The whole article about the McMinnville boys angered me so much! These boys assaulted girls and it's OK? What were the parents thinking who are raising these kids?

In my line of work I see women beaten and abused/assaulted sexually and yeah, the men/boys say they are sorry, and worst of all the woman/child doesn't press charges and all is forgiven. This whole story is a wait-and-see epic.

These boys should have gotten the whole punishment. It would have been a wonderful example of maybe not doing this again.

Parents, your daughters were assaulted. If anyone touches or pokes your breasts, slaps your bottoms, or simulates intercourse, yes my dears, you are victims! They are not your friends. They disrespected you.

This is not funny. With these attitudes of forgiveness these girls have, they certainly live up to the adage that there are no victims, just volunteers. Shame on the parents and the judge who let them off so easy. — Linda S. Tedder, Cave Junction

Not known to the general public is the Pentagon's hiring of private corporations like Blackwater and Titan for gathering intelligence. This sounds like a good idea, but the problem lies in the fact that severe abuses have occurred and will likely continue with this policy in place.

For instance, the torture at Abu Ghraib was done by private contractors as well as uniformed military. Abu Ghraib was only one of several locations where foreign prisoners were humiliated, tortured, denied the most basic human rights and even murdered.

Uncertainty over who was responsible for oversight of the interrogation contracts added to the confusion surrounding the prison abuse case. You never heard about the private firms involved in this abuse of prisoners because of the billions at stake following a certain public outcry. The four individuals strung up and burned alive in Fallujah were private contractors, not U.S. soldiers.

Blackwater broke its contractual obligations to the four men by sending them into a hostile area in unarmored vehicles and without proper weapons or a rear gunner. Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., has brought this up for a futile vote to the lobbyist-friendly Senate. When will this war profiteering stop? — D. Ashton, Talent

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