DEAR MERCURY—How's that job search going? Amanda Fritz will ask that city purchases let local businesses have priority ["The Underdog," News, Sept 25]. If out-of-area businesses win the contracts, [they] should be required to hire and buy locally wherever they can. Remember the ARCO housing modules built for the North Slope in Alaska? Portland gave ARCO $1.5 million in tax breaks to get the prefabs built under the Fremont Bridge. ARCO shipped in Texans and paid them $3 an hour more than locals. Unless you want a replay of this disaster, vote for Amanda Fritz.

—Chris Kerchum


DEAR MERCURY—I recently had a chance to visit the Portland City Club and see the debate between Amanda Fritz and Charles Lewis ["The Underdog," News, Sept 25]. Amanda had a much broader perspective and demonstrated a wealth of experience and community involvement. Charles is clearly an intelligent and resourceful man, however I was disappointed in his reliance on the founding of Ethos as his primary qualifier for a council seat. Charles would be better served talking about how he would prevent the necessity of individual citizens having to step up and fill the role of government. In the wake of disastrous legislation like Measure 5 (and the currently proposed Measure 59), the citizens and critical institutions of Oregon have faced financial crises that pit social-needs programs—such as children's musical education—against other vital services like health care, police and fire fighters, and our parks and streets. Are we to expect that the citizens who suffer under repercussions of these bad decisions patch all holes in the social fabric created by irresponsible legislation? I think Amanda Fritz is by far the better candidate and would best serve the needs of our city. 

—Wesley Buchholz


DEAR MERCURY—Bring the zing: May I first congratulate Steven Humphrey for his article in the September 25 issue ["Shut Up... No, YOU Shut Up!," Feature]. Rarely do you find a man with "hump" in his name so willing to venture into the precarious field of burn-producing advice. Bravo. Now on to serious matters: the article itself. I greatly appreciate the attempts to aid the presidential candidates; they need it. However, I see one great flaw in the reasoning: literacy. We all know that politicians can't read. If they could, they would never approve those smarmy letters their campaign staffs send out to us. This was the real key to the success of Bush's campaign; they gave him picture books. So if you want to help the candidates, make the Mercury include pop-ups and a coloring section. Please, be considerate of the illiterate.

—Jons Myth

OH BOY! We love coloring books! Just think, we could have a coloring section where you could determine the color of your favorite band's jeans, or render a picture of a vegan Reuben sandwich, and just imagine all the things it could lead to in the sex issue! Thanks for the tip! In the meantime, enjoy two tickets to the Laurelhurst Theater and lunch at No Fish! Go Fish!, where you will need to contain your coloring on the paper napkins.