Please give my sincere thanks to Paul Fattig for so ably expressing his political independence. (column, Oct. 12). What a switch from the gnashing of molars from many whose tiresome writings are as slanted as those found in a political tract.

Worse yet, the print media is filled with selected articles, authors and cartoons that express the paper's own political philosophies and thus support their own parties and candidates to the exclusion of opposition.

To me, opinion is one thing but electioneering is another. As for me, I would just prefer the news. Then let me decide.

This persuasive approach by the media has even permeated the comics.

Which leads me to a related question. Why should we find the Doonesbury political diatribe in the comic page?

And for an unrelated question. What in the world is funny about Dilbert? — Col. W.D. Gardiner, Medford

Usually for elections the Talent Library is equipped with a ballot drop box for Talent area voters, but not so for this coming general election.

An inquiry to our county clerk yielded several reasons for Talent Library, open 38 hours per week, not having its usual drop box: budget constraints, limited library hours and, finally, security. The Ashland Library and the Justice Building in Medford will have 24-hour drops; the cities of Central Point, Eagle Point, and Rogue River have drops as well.

While I understand the need for balloting venues to be secure, I am dismayed at the lack of effort on the part of the county to provide each community with a central location for residents to physically submit their ballot. With voter turnout expected to be extremely high this November, all possible ways to bring in and handle votes are important and worthwhile.

Voters of Talent, Jacksonville, Phoenix, Gold Hill, Shady Cove, and everyone else in our fine valley — mail in your ballot now, or hoof it to your most convenient drop box. — Michele Bashaw, Talent

Sean L. Nelson's letter (10/22/08) lists among those who have used mind-altering drugs ("undeniable users") Picasso, Van Gogh, and Shakespeare. I am not aware of Picasso's use, or of Van Gogh (absinthe, perhaps). But Shakespeare? Wherein lies the evidence for his "undeniable" use? That is an utterly false allegation. — Edward Gosselin, Jacksonville

Today, people around the world will observe United Nations Day by celebrating the work of the organization created more than 60 years ago with the farsighted leadership and enthusiastic support of the United States.

Though it plays a vital role in addressing the world's toughest challenges, the U.N.'s contributions are frequently overlooked by the media and public officials.

As we mark U.N. Day, it's important to recognize the U.N.'s enduring value as a forum for fashioning collective solutions to shared global problems.

The United Nations Association of the U.S.A. (not a part of the U.N. but supportive of it) will host a program at the Southern Oregon University Student Union Rogue Room from 3-5 p.m. Sunday. The program, co-hosted by the U.N. Club at SOU and other organizations, will feature professor Demetrios Argyriades as the keynote speaker. His talk is titled "Emerging Challenges and the United Nations," and he will talk about some of the key issues facing us and the rest of the world. Admission is free, and all are welcome. — Wayne Thomas, Medford

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