We are disgusted reading the "pros and cons" about the proposed new water park in Medford! The Parks and Rec community has failed miserably in just maintaining the two swimming pools we now have. Both are leaking thousands of gallons of water each year.

Seems to us that two brand-new pools with covers over them would be just fine. While the idea of a new park might look good now, we maintain that down the road interest will wane to the point that it will not pay for itself. Guess who's going to pay the bill then to maintain such a venture?

While on the subject of spending, how about a nice Fourth of July parade with all the trimmings in honor of the greatest free nation on Earth, instead of spending untold thousands to honor the lowly pear? I think all the veterans and patriotic citizens of both Medford and Phoenix more than deserve it. How about some input? — R. Andy and Sondra Anderson, Phoenix

Local voter turnout was low. Why?

The truth is, it makes little difference who is elected to office; nearly all people elected to office change immediately and act like sheep. Once elected, politicians do as the bureaucrats and party leadership tells them to do. They become convinced, by the bureaucrats, that the bureaucrats know best.

Bureaucrats, special interests and public employee unions continue to control and spend taxpayer money unabated. Some politicians seem to check their brains at the door; honesty, integrity and election promises to the electorate often are forgotten.

Until such a time as there are major changes in governments from city halls all the way to D.C., there will be few jobs created. One would have to be some sort of a dunce to even try to start a manufacturing business in the U.S. Planning, fees, permits, government regulations and costs kill business.

Without jobs soon, there will be riots, cities and government buildings will burn, anarchy may rule. Government-created jobs and government jobs do not generate new money. The medical field, although needed, does not generate new money. The government has printed huge sums of money that must be paid back either in money or blood. — Charles Olsen, Central Point

Imagine it ... conservatives, putting aside party-first obstructionism, reach out to liberal Democrats to work together for the good of the country. Too good to be true? Sadly, in this country, yes. Congratulations, Great Britain. — Rick Marshall, Ashland

The Jacksonville City Council may be planning to sell the Historic 1854 Methodist Episcopal Church. In a recent Mail Tribune article, the mayor was quoted saying, "We have to ask, does the church really serve the mission of the city? It probably doesn't."

I shamefully admit to looking up the definition of mission after reading that quote. How else do you respond when you hear that owning, protecting and preserving this historic building doesn't serve the overall purpose or objective of the city?

When I walk down the streets of Jacksonville, all I can think of is history. The town's incredible state of preservation makes it so unique, so unlike any other historic landmark in the United States. I believe Jacksonville's future is found in its past, and the protection of the city's future should be the primary focus of any council.

The church is the oldest wooden structure in Oregon and the oldest continuously used church west of the Rockies. This is an extraordinary building with a colorful history that is an integral part of an historic community. That said, it still appears history may soon be for sale in Jacksonville, but I am left wondering, at what price? — Chris Smith, Jacksonville

On Wednesday, May 9, I heard a newscast where Mexican President Felipe Calderon took issue and opposed the new Arizona immigration law.

I wonder what the Mexican people would have to say if our president, Mr. Obama, had the audacity to go to their country and criticize their law enforcement practices.

I agree with President Calderon. He should promote more jobs in his country. He should address the Mexican illegal immigrants in our country and say, "Tell the Americans you're mad, and you are not going to take it anymore. Re-climb those fences, come back through those tunnels. Your country has jobs for you, food stamps, free medical and we will educate your children."

If you miss them so much, Mr. Calderon, tell them to come home.

Texas Republican Sen. John Cornyn hit the nail on the head when he said it was inappropriate for Mr. Calderon to lecture Americans on state and local law.

What is it that Mr. Obama, the president of the United States of America, the Democrats and the Mexican leader don't understand about the difference between legal and illegal? — Ann Liddell, Phoenix

A wealthy banker awakes, throws off his Swedish down comforter, steps on Persian throw rugs on the Australian hardwood floor. Shaves with his German-made shaver. Towels off after the shower with an English-made Egyptian cotton towel, dons underwear made in Bangladesh and a Chinese silk suit from his Hong Kong tailor. Slips into his Italian shoes, goes into the kitchen where an English butler hands him cappuccino made on a French coffee machine. He calls his Thai chauffeur on his Norwegian cellphone to bring the Rolls Royce around. He takes his eelskin briefcase (from Malaysia), gets in the limo, turns on TV news. The largest container ship (built in Germany, power plant from Croatia) in the world is unloading 2,500 containers in Los Angeles, with everything from apples, appliances, furniture, tools, clothes, toys to xylophones from New Zealand, Malaysia, China, Japan and Mongolia.

He remembers to call the service number about a glitch for his Japanese-made laptop — and is connected to a service tech in Bombay. Next, he checks his Swiss Rolex, tells the chauffeur to take him to a different building this morning so he can join a symposium on the puzzling slowness of our economic recovery.

So, buy American! How? Are we still self-sufficient? Doesn't seem so. — Sidney Stitt, Phoenix

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