TO THE EDITOR—The Mercury's endorsement of Steve Novick is misguided [The Election Issue, May 1]. It is Oregon House Speaker Jeff Merkley who is rising in the polls and has the momentum, not Steve Novick. He engineered victories in 2006 that ended 16 years of Republican rule. And, under Merkley's leadership, Measure 49 was referred to Oregon voters to restore sanity to Oregon's land-use planning. We don't need schtick and derogatory statements about other Democrats, which Novick gives us.

Steven Mayhew


DEAR MERCURY—When the Mercury endorses Earl, you promote the criminal Bush [The Election Issue, May 1]. Earl Blumenauer says impeachment is not on the table because there is other more important business. When you endorse the sleeping security guard, you promote the criminal.

Joe Rowe


DEAR MERCURY—I read the "Fact Check" article today and was a bit taken aback [Feature, May 8]. [Amy J. Ruiz's] comment, "Unfortunately, Garren's campaign material is short on tangible things he'd do if elected" was significantly inaccurate. The following "tangible things I'd do if elected" are: (1) Encourage the creation of cooperative housing, both for existing rental housing and the creation of new affordable housing. (2) Solar panels on every roof, and conversion to electric busses. (3) A whole article on biking safety issues and some solutions. (4) A whole article on racial profiling and some solutions for that issue as well. (5) Restructuring of business taxes to encourage small businesses. (6) Returning viable technical education to our schools so that young people can learn living-wage skills in high school. (7) Increasing the city's disaster preparedness for a major seismic event. (8) Encouraging more SRO housing in the city so that single people can have a place to live for less than $500 a month. (9) Preparing the city for the increasing shortages of petroleum. (10) And yes, rent stabilization. I know the Mercury has a bias for another candidate in this race, and that bias has been very transparent. The assertion that my campaign materials are "short on tangible things" is just not true, and I consider the article not much short of a "hit piece."

Ed Garren, Candidate for Portland City Council, Seat #2

AMY J. RUIZ RESPONDS—With all due respect, Ed, the story was about the campaign material itself—the pieces (or in your case email) that voters pay attention to for mere seconds. I did not go to any other candidates' websites (though most, if not all, listed the URL on their mailer), and I did not go to yours—I relied on the email text itself, which listed only rent stabilization as a tangible idea. Do you have more? Yes, obviously you do—but in critiquing the single campaign piece, they didn't come across. And frankly, you have near infinite space in an emailer—why not list more of those 10 ideas on it?


DEAR, DEAR, SWEET MERCURY—Just wondering, in regard to the last issue's review of the new Harold & Kumar flick ["Harold & Kumar Vociferously Make Known Their Concerns about America's Current National and International Policies," Film, April 24] what exactly a "blumpkin" is, and why people think they are funny. I haven't seen the movie yet, but what if when I do I miss out on the blumpkin jokes... or even worse, what if when they occur everyone in the theater turns around and LOOKS AT ME? Sirs and madams, that is a possibility that just may keep me in for the night. I think that perhaps instead, I will spend my movie-going money on some Tales from the Crypt pinball.

Matthew Bird

WELL MATTHEW, while there ain't nothing wrong with some pinball, we still think you should see the new Harold & Kumar, even though we just... we just couldn't describe for you the blumpkin on these pages. It would soil our reputation. (But we dare you to try one.) In the meantime, you win two tickets to the Laurelhurst Theater and lunch at No Fish! Go Fish! where there are No. Blumpkins. What. So-ever.