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LETTERS: October 6th Issue

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Re.: Election Coverage

Forgive me. Your “coverage” (read: “lack of”) of the local candidates’ platforms for this year’s mayoral and city council election is, in my opinion, cowardly and indicative of the rot and fraudulent nature of modern media, John and Carol’s sole exposures notwithstanding. I was hoping that the RV Messenger would have proven itself able to rise above and set itself apart from the contrivances and tactics of its mainstream role models. Anyway, that was my hope. Perhaps you’ll redeem yourself at the eleventh hour and show some journalistic backbone and guts. Else, your avoidance of the issue will continue to be made mention of in other public forums and media engagements.

As always, I express my willingness to submit to an interview of your choosing and focus, if you so desire and see the wisdom in doing so. We candidates are expecting you to step up and play your part for providing not just entertainment value, but real social service by informing the general public of essential matters e.g their local political races. If the Messenger escapes this election season without providing candidate coverage, it will then have revealed itself as a pathetic example of advertising glut and social distraction. Our community is crying, if only unconsciously, for you to fulfill your obligations to be a periodical of respect, ethics, and service to it.

We need to be able to think, talk and write about topics that are uncomfortable and controversial if there is to be any headway made against this path of corruption, war and lies being blazed by the current power hogs at the helm of our national cultural and political ship.

In Peace, Gratitude and Fearlessness.

Biome Michael Erickson

* Erickson is one of four candidates for Mayor of Ashland


Editor’s response to Erickson: Over the past two months, we have been running a Q&A profile each issue with local candidates, in a column called “Meet Your Candidates.” As well, in last issue, we covered local ballot initiatives in Medford. We are trying hard to provide coverage to candidates in all the cities we cover—Ashland, Medford and Grants Pass.  

We have limited resources to publish our paper each issue, and try to fit in as much information as we can, given the number of pages we can afford to print and the part-time staff we have available to write stories. We are doing our best to reach out as many candidates as we can.  


Biome’s response: This isn’t our first contact with one another, Mr. Busse. I ran for city council two years ago and you did make an effort for an interview then. This year, I have so far verified that at least one other candidate (Mr. White) has received and completed an interview with you—this being many weeks ago. (Editorial note: We actually have run four interviews with candidates in the past four issues.)

The fact that you have deliberately withheld any mention of the two other confirmed mayoral candidates (Greene and Erickson) in your previously printed Q&A stories with Mr. Stromberg and Ms. Voisin even surreptitiously alluding that there were no other candidates for mayor, nor have you made any effort to solicit an interview from me as a three-time consecutive local candidate—this is quite an interesting way to offer balanced and fair candidate coverage, wouldn’t you say? 

Q&A’s do not seem to require much journalistic effort or manpower. Your explanation of the Messenger‘s coverage of the local election scene is noted.

Don’t be sorry, Mr. Busse. Be Silly! You’re doing what you’re doing and that speaks louder than any printed article.


Hey Messenger: I saw someone else’s question about being content and if that’s enough to stay with someone and your answer depended on the person asking’s personality. Okay that’s fair but what if I am the kind of person who has never been content and I still am not content? Is it possible to be “content” with the relationship but generally not content in life?

Thanks, Jen.

Dear Jen: Good question. I think the answer to that would be yes. However, just because you have never been content, does not mean you never will be. It is important that we keep striving for this sometimes illusive feeling, if not for ourselves, for our partners. Of course, I also do not know anything about you and it is worth noting that for some, depending on medical history, this is much easier said than done. For the sake of discussion, we should put aside for now the possibility that happiness is medically impossible for you. I was reading a study the other day about how having a happy partner can improve the physical health of the other person. You can find this advanced publication at the American Psychological Association’s website under health psychology. Of course, you can also use this to your own benefit, by finding a happy partner (if you don’t already have one). Researchers Chopik and O’Brien (2016) found that having a happy partner makes life easier, motivates you to maintain healthy habits, and even tempers self-destructive outlets present in certain personality types. After several years together, you can see how this simple difference could start to make a dent in overall physical health.

Reference article: “Happy You, Healthy Me? Having a Happy Partner is Independently Associated with Better Health in Oneself,” by William J. Chopik, PhD, Michigan State University, and Ed O’Brien, PhD, University of Chicago. Health Psychology, published online Sept. 19, 2016.


Hey Messenger: Please tell me how to get the out-of-control university students that rent that house next door to us to shut the F up.


Dear L.D.: I am sure there are lots of ways to get college students to be quiet. I think the best way I have seen someone handle this was back in 2009, when this girl put her music speakers in the closest windowsill facing the other house and blasted Whitney Houston’s cover of Dolly Parton’s “I Will Always Love You” repeatedly until they got the hint. Make sure you use the Whitney Houston version because it is 5000 times more annoying.  Also, be careful to run this little campaign before 9 pm if you are in Ashland, because the city ordinances are stricter than in many places. We wouldn’t want our little plan to backfire.


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