Those tax day tea parties across the country had me wondering if the participants did their homework.

What were they protesting, tax adjustments for the wealthy who, when the Bush tax cuts expire, will still be paying less than they did under Reagan?

In essence, the tea-baggers were out in force protecting the fat cats from paying higher taxes. Ninety-five percent of the protesters are to receive tax cuts, not increases.

Where was the outrage over multi-national corporations who register their companies in the Cayman Islands to avoid paying U.S. taxes? Studies have shown each state pays billions of tax dollars to make up the difference.

What the tea-baggers really want are no taxes at all. If that's so, they should try to live without publicly funded roads, parks, schools, police and fire services, and so many other American institutions, such as Social Security and Medicare. It seems they want the goods but don't want to pay the freight.

Those tea party events were a weak attempt by the minority to rally support for another anti-tax protest. But they at least helped create financial stimulus to the tea bag industry. — Dennis Rasmussen, Rogue River

Here is how to drive a Democrat crazy or, if you prefer, here are additions to the Devil's Dictionary:

Paranoia (n.) Observing things without government permission. Such as a president whose Department of Homeland Security labels people who believe in the Constitution (not to mention "disgruntled veterans") as potential terrorists who should be watched by local police agencies, but who plays kissy-face with anti-American terrorists such as Communist dictator Raul Castro, would-be Communist dictator Chavez of Venezuela, the Iranian government (who recently once again is holding an American — this time a journalist — hostage).

Conspiracy Theorist (n.) One who notices politically inconvenient facts. Like the resemblance between Obama's recent call for global cooperation to end poverty and the economic crisis and the Anti-Christ's remarks in the first book of the "Left Behind" series.

But as we all know, what paranoid conspiracy theorists point out are simply coincidences, right?

But why is that cop following me? Could it be because of my "The Constitution; not just a good idea — it's the Law" bumper sticker? — Fred Kenpo, Prospect

Concerning the unfortunate uprooting of numerous Southern Oregon pear orchards: If the tree roots were treated with agrobacterium radiobacter, which is likely, then the air should probably be monitored for that bacterium, especially near hospitals and medical centers, as an online medical journal several years ago reported that agrobacterium radiobacter had been found on titanium heart valves during autopsy.

Also, the bacteria create a "halo" around the cell wall that causes penicillins to be ineffective. The roots of many ornamental shrubs and fruit and nut trees are treated with the organism, supposedly to prevent "galls." The thought behind allowing this, apparently, is that the roots are going into the ground, so it's safe. But today's orchards have always been tomorrow's housing tracts. — Patti Morey, Ashland

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