LETTERS November 12th Issue
Re.: S*** Sandwich: Van Diesel’s Out of Gas in The Last Witch Hunter
I was just reading the Messenger and came across Ned Lannamar’s review of Vin Diesel. It is weird to open a newspaper and have someone in the first sentence cussing and then the first paragraph taking God’s name in vain. I think, can I even have this newspaper sitting on our coffeetable because if my son comes up, I don’t want him reading that kind of crap.
I’m thinking: Are you not editing? Are you trying to be so relevant and cool that you are throwing out cuss word and blasphemy. If you’ve got something of substance, then the words will have weight themselves; you don’t have to throw in all this junior high rhetoric.
It is a good newspaper, but that was just cheap.
– Adam Pearson.
RE: Sales Tax in Oregon
A few years ago, I wrote a letter to a Jackson County Commissioner suggesting a 5 percent county sales tax (instead of levies that increase property taxes), to help fund libraries, schools and other necessary services. He replied with this information: a state wide 5 percent sales tax could reduce property taxes by 1/3 and income taxes by 1/2. Additionally, if the measure is locked into the constitution, County/City sales taxes can not increase. The state would realize $800 million in revenue from sales to non-residents. Property owners would no longer be the principle contributors to the county, and state revenues.
It’s time that support for public services be more equitable. Not allowing a sales tax only makes property taxes go up. In Ashland, a 5 percent food tax is easily added. This does not discourage people from eating out.
– Ruben Davalos
RE.: Home Sweet Home
My wife and I recently moved to the area, and appreciate Phil Busse’s informative article on homelessness in Ashland – part of a shameful national crisis that cannot be confronted and ended without massive financial resources. Allegedly this can’t happen in an era of austerity when human services are being cut. We just don’t have the needed funds.
I disagree. As a nation we are awash in funds: they are hidden away in off shore corporate accounts, in massive tax breaks for the 1%, poured into the endless wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and in the Pentagon/National Security State budget. A few years ago Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz and Harvard scholar Linda Bilmes estimated the eventual total cost of the Iraq War alone at some $3 trillion dollars. This figure has been revised, and it is now estimated that both wars may cost as much as $6 trillion dollars.
Based on this new estimate, the eventual cost of these two conflicts for the citizens of Ashland, and Jackson County will be $373 million and $3.9 billion dollars, respectively. These tax funds would be more than enough to provide all the financial support to confront and end homelessness, and deal with every human and environment crisis facing this area—to create and sustain genuine opportunity and hope for all those in Ashland and the county who now struggle with a bleak existence.
– John Marciano