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Day: August 15, 2014

Good, not-so-clean fun

Craig Murphy/KEIZERTIMES
Anne-Marie Storms (center) and others react after Lt. Andrew Copeland (right) flung some pie at her during a pie-eating contest during RIVERfair Aug. 9.

By CRAIG MURPHY
Of the Keizertimes

By its nature, a pie-eating contest isn’t clean.

After all, contestants are planting their faces into a pie and eating as much as possible in a short time. Displaying manners and staying clean are low priorities.

But the pie-eating contest at RIVERfair at Keizer Rapids Park on Aug. 9 kicked things up a level.

Specifically, two people did: Lt. Andrew Copeland with the Keizer Police Department and Anne-Marie Storms, the public education specialist with the Keizer Fire District.

Per usual, there were multiple categories for the contest: boys 13 and under, girls 13 and under (featuring mini pies), plus women 14+ and men 14+, featuring full-size pies from Shari’s.

In between was the KPD vs. KFD vs. Keizer CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) battle royale. Two people from each group competed, sitting across from each other.

Before the event got going, Copeland and Storms engaged in a lively but fun-spirited battle of words. The real fun began, however, when Storms realized any part of her pie she put in front of Copeland would be his responsibility to consume.

Storms did that shortly after the contest started, using her mouth to scoop out a portion of her pie and depositing it on the table in front of Copeland.

Game on.

Copeland responded by flinging a portion of pie at Storms. A lovely streak of marionberry pie thus highlighted Storms’ blond hair. Much of the pie decorated the ground behind her. Still more landed on CERT member Jerry Wade, seated on the other side of Storms. Wade had pie down his back – and lower.

Because she had placed much of her pie in front of Copeland, Storms was declared the winner, though later the outcome was changed and Wade was named the winner.

“Officer Copeland and I have a great working relationship,” Storms said. “We challenged each other to the pie-eating contest. The best way is teamwork. My version of teamwork was I gave him my portion of the pie to eat. Somehow it ended up back on me.”

Storms had a hunch things might not be clean.

“That’s why I went with the trash bag,” she said, after shaking hands with Copeland and attempting to rub some of her pie-streaked hair on his uniform. “A pie-eating contest is not something I’m usually into, but it’s for a great cause and it shows the great relationship between police, fire and CERT. I was there for the team.”

For Storms she had to devise an impromptu strategy once she saw half a pie placed in front of her.

“That’s a lot of pie,” she said. “So I thought, since I have to eat what’s in front of me, that means someone else can eat what’s in front of them, including my portion of the pie. So I went with that route. They didn’t say it was cheating, so I thought I would give it a shot.”

Emerson Woomer, 11, won the girl’s contest while 8-year-old Kaleb Bridger won the boy’s competition. Amanda Rumsey won a sibling rivalry to claim top honors in the women’s category, while Jim Christopher only had one competitor to beat in the men’s contest.

Woomer hadn’t done such a contest before and noted it was “just a little thing.”

“I ate around the crust first, then some of the inside, then I dumped it out because I couldn’t get my face in to get straight to the bottom,” she said. “So it’s easier if you just dump it on the table.”

Bridger had a similar strategy.

“I just decided to use my teeth to knock it out and to push it to the side,” said Bridger, who acknowledged he was afraid of puking.

Rumsey didn’t have much of a strategy while eating her rhubarb pie.

“I was sticking my face in the pie and trying to get as much as I can while beating my sister,” she said. “I was eating a little slow, but when Sheri started saying Melissa was beating me, I ate faster. I can be a little competitive and I like pie.”

Christopher had a whole plan ready.

“My strategy was to make sure the crust was gone off the top, then try to consume as much as I could,” said Christopher, who noted his daughter was going to compete in her event but wasn’t there in time. “Slow and steady was the best way to do it.”

What other kind of eating contest would Christopher want to try?

“I would try a hamburger one,” he said. “I love hamburgers. I was disappointed (there weren’t more competitors), but I think it would have been the same outcome. The strategy was smart.”

Charette moved, details clarified

John Morgan looks at potential Keizer Rapids Park amenities he's written on a white board during the Aug. 12 Keizer Parks Board meeting. (KEIZERTIMES/Craig Murphy)
John Morgan looks at potential Keizer Rapids Park amenities he’s written on a white board during the Aug. 12 Keizer Parks Board meeting. (KEIZERTIMES/Craig Murphy)

By CRAIG MURPHY
Of the Keizertimes

Next month a design charette will take place to look at long-term options for Keizer Rapids Park.

The date for that meeting, however, has been moved.

The charette is part of an ongoing effort to figure out what Keizer residents would like to see down the road for 28 additional acres of the park. The process started earlier this year when the idea of moving the Big Toy playground project was proposed by Mayor Lore Christopher. That, in turn, led to an effort to expand the Urban Growth Boundary. Such expansion would mean additional land to bring into the park master plan.

Meetings have been held this spring and summer to solicit feedback from citizens and sports organizations about what amenities they would like to see in the park.

With input gathered, members of the Keizer Parks and Recreation Advisory Board on Tuesday came up with a list of top ideas, to be presented at next month’s charette.

For months, the charette had been listed for Sept. 20, though no exact time was decided.

Now an exact time – and new day – have been decided.

As board members started discussing timing, Public Works director Bill Lawyer made a suggestion.

“We really need to revisit the date,” Lawyer said. “Servefest takes up the whole (Keizer Civic Center) on September 20. My suggestion is to delay one week to September 27. That keeps us pretty much on schedule. If we want to maintain September 20, we need to find another facility. Servefest is too big to hold the meeting here. We would need to have at least one large meeting room.”

Lawyer noted the charette done several years to establish KRP lasted four hours.

“But it was brand new, with six different proposals,” said Parks Board member Richard Walsh, a key figure in the park’s formation. “The general public did it, with 100 people at tables. This one, I thought, would be representative groups.”

That will indeed be the case. Parks Board members came up with a list of representatives to invite, coming up with about 30 names. As such, chair Brandon Smith said four hours shouldn’t be necessary.

“I was thinking two hours,” Smith said. “How does 10 a.m. to noon sound?”

Others agreed and the time was set. The rest of the original timeline remains the same. Concept designs will be created at the charette and reviewed at the Oct. 14 Parks Board meeting. A recommendation will be made at that meeting and forwarded to the Keizer City Council. Councilors will hold a public hearing and make a decision on Nov. 3.

The related part of Tuesday’s meeting was sorting through input gathered at recent meetings about what amenities should be considered. Only the West Keizer Neighborhood Association and Greater Gubser Neighborhood Association meetings on the topic had much feedback.

John Morgan, who attended the May GGNA meeting when amenities were discussed, used a white board on Tuesday to write down what amenities will be proposed at next month’s charette.

“The Parks Board is aware this is a dream, but it has to be a pragmatic dream,” Morgan said. “It’s not going to all be done at once. I would anticipate probably a 10-year buildout of a park. Now you take the lead to make this amazing facility even better. My role is to help you in facilitating a list of amenities, for a proposal to lay out to the community.”

One amenity debated was a plan brought up last month to have an indoor sports facility at KRP. Walsh noted the idea jived with past ideas.

“We had a Keizer Compass visioning plan, which talked about Keizer being a tournament town,” he said. “The Something Special Task Force came out with a recommendation to put some money into here to build the community center and the other half into an indoor sports facility. They needed additional land for sports fields around it. That went forward. That is where we got the money from to buy the 28 acres that we are now planning.”

Parks Board members had Morgan write down the indoor sports facility, the Big Toy, multi-use outdoor sports fields, picnic areas, an educational facility, toilets, a covered shelter, a drinking fountain and a hard surface sports court.

William Criteser disagreed with the idea of having an indoor facility.

“I don’t feel indoor facilities should be there,” he said. “That’s not the place for it. Use land up by Keizer Station.”

Walsh argued there is much more room for such a facility at KRP as opposed to the city-owned five acres by Volcanoes Stadium. In addition, code requirements on that land “would jack the price way up,” he added.

“Having the indoor facility makes everything at Keizer Rapids Park multi-season,” Walsh said. “When the rain hits, you can move events from other parts of the park indoors. It makes everything work.”

Bicycle race series kicks up dust at Keizer Rapids

Salem's Patrick Jackson celebrates winning the A's race during the first Keizer Rapids Cross Twilight CX Series race Monday at Keizer Rapids Park. (KEIZERTIMES/Craig Murphy)
Salem’s Patrick Jackson celebrates winning the A’s race during the first Keizer Rapids Cross Twilight CX Series race Monday at Keizer Rapids Park. (KEIZERTIMES/Craig Murphy)


By CRAIG MURPHY
Of the Keizertimes

There was some home cooking going on Monday evening at Keizer Rapids Park.

The Keizer Rapids Cross Twilight CX Series kicked off the first of three events Monday, using a 1.5 mile course through the woods at KRP. The three-race series continues the following two Mondays at the park, with registration at 5 p.m. and the first of three races starting at 5:45.

Each winner on Monday had plenty of experience with the course. And for good reason: two of the winners were Salem residents, while another lived in Keizer until a month ago.

Rolland Hayden recently moved to Gresham to start a new job, but until July was assistant principal at North Salem High School and lived about a mile from the park.

“I knew every bump and corner on the course,” said Hayden, who won the beginner/junior/C’s race. “I had the home court advantage. It was a pretty big advantage, but I didn’t mind it. When I compete up in Portland, the guys from up there have the advantage.”

Even discounting his experience on the KRP course, Hayden enjoys the layout.

“It is a super fast course, very technical,” he said. “I’m super excited about racing here at Keizer Rapids Park. I will be here whenever they’re here.”

Organizer Jarod Seaman from Half Penny Cycling in Salem first proposed the series at the June Keizer Parks and Recreation Advisory Board meeting. Parks Board members agreed to allow the series to take place. Volunteers with Keizer CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) helped with parking.

A total of 61 racers competed on Monday, ranging in age from 12 to 64. The course included several barriers and a wooden staircase, one of the key sections for the course.

Seaman said a minimum amount of alterations were needed to make the course race-ready.

“We asked the city if they could move a section of logs and they were willing to move those to the staircase,” he said. “That definitely helped out. They let me paint (arrows on) the course.”

Seaman predicted a fast course.

“The overall technical aspect of the course is definitely a factor,” he said. “You can really get going with a lot of speed, because it’s so dry. But you can also crash more easily because of that.”

On a day when the temperature hovered around 100 degrees, Seaman pointed to a nice aspect of the course.

“It’s a lot cooler in the trees,” he said. “The heat of the day does play a factor. I expected the numbers to be low this week because of that, but I’m pleasantly surprised by the number of cars here.”

Josiah Zukowski of Salem won the combined B’s/single speed/master’s 50+ race.

“The key is riding harder than you think you should and not stopping,” he said. “I’ve been out here on this course three times. That helped a lot. There were several times I almost fell, but I got up and was able to keep going. It’s a super fun course. There was way more pedaling than I thought.”

Patrick Jackson defeated his friend Ryan Garner to win the A’s race, the fastest category with the top riders. That race went 40 minutes – which was roughly equal to six laps – while the other two races went 30 minutes.

“It’s a super fun course,” Jackson said. “I definitely had the local advantage. I knew how fast to take each corner. I knew which ones to take at full speed.”

For the most part, the winning riders dismounted and carried their bikes up the staircase. Hayden noted he had practiced dismounting before getting to the base, allowing him to shoulder the bike in one fluid – and thus quicker – motion.

“It seemed too risky to try riding the bike up the staircase,” he said. “There was too much margin for error. If you don’t make it up or fall, you could lose more time.”

Jackson tried both ways.

“Running it was probably faster than riding it,” Jackson said.

There is a $15 registration fee to compete, while spectators can watch for free. The highest finisher over the three weeks in the A’s category will receive a $100 payout, with $75 for second and $50 for third.

RIVERfair brings out the crowd

By CRAIG MURPHY
Of the Keizertimes

It was beautiful weather for a fair.

Such was the case Saturday, Aug. 9 as the seventh annual RIVERfair took place at Keizer Rapids Park.

There was live entertainment throughout the day. Early on there was the Copper Creek Mercantile Pet Parade, followed by the Golden Bone Awards.

In addition to K-9 demonstrations by the Hubbard Police Department, there were a number of booths for visitors to stroll past and to stop at.

Per usual, one of the highlights was the pie-eating contest, presented by Shari’s Restaurant and the Keizer UPS Store. An impromptu contest between three groups stole the show (see the story on the front page of the Aug. 15 Keizertimes for more details).

Off-site there was a car show, while on-site the day concluded with a concert by Brady Goss at the amphitheater.

Plenty of pictures from RIVERfair are in the print issue of the Aug. 15 Keizertimes, but even more pictures from throughout the day are on our Facebook page and also below.

[fbphotos id=10152237077736976]

Smacked by reality in the Middle East

By MICHAEL GERSON

So ends a foreign policy experiment that began with two choices in 2011. In that hinge year, President Obama decided to stay out of the Syrian conflict and to passively accept the withdrawal of all U.S. ground forces from Iraq (which he later claimed as a personal achievement during his re-election campaign).

I’m not sure the motivation behind these acts can be termed a strategy. They seemed rooted in a perception of the public’s war-weariness (which Obama fed through his own rhetoric), a firm determination to be the anti-Bush, and a vague belief that a U.S. presence in the Middle East creates more problems than it solves. Not coincidentally, according to political scientist Colin Dueck, “elite, trans-Atlantic liberal opinion” viewed Obama’s approach as “the height of sophistication, regardless of its practical failures.”

Those failures are now massive, undeniable and unfolding: Atrocities in Syria (including the death of more than 10,000 children); an endless Syrian civil war in which the threat of the Islamic State, gathered strength; the victory of IS against a hollowed-out Iraqi military; the massacre of religious minorities; the establishment of a terrorist safe haven the size of New England, controlled by well-armed, expansionist, messianic militants; the attraction of more than 10,000 global jihadists to the conflict, including thousands with Western passports; and now the forced return of American attention to the region under dramatically less-favorable circumstances.

 This is what the complete collapse of a foreign policy doctrine looks like. In the absence of stabilizing American leadership, the Middle East has become a regional Sunni-Shiite proxy war in which the most radical and ruthless thrive.

The Obama administration seems gobsmacked by the speed and extent of this unraveling. The possible collapse of Kurdistan (one of our most reliable friends in the region) was something that even the worst-case American analyses during the grimmest days of the Iraq War did not contemplate. This is what shocked the administration into (limited) action and accelerated the rethinking of American policy.

The options are few. The administration could seek the eventual destruction of the IS safe haven. This would involve encouraging a political accommodation to increase the legitimacy of Iraq’s central government; stabilizing the defense of Erbil and Baghdad with immediate military aid (which the administration has tentatively begun); targeting the extremists on both sides of the (nonexistent) Iraq/Syria border; attempting to peel off support among Sunni tribes sickened by the Islamic State’s brutality; and dramatically strengthening the Iraqi government and the Kurds so they can regain the offensive over time. Thousands of American troops would be necessary to advise Iraqi units, collect intelligence, conduct airstrikes and carry out special operations raids. This approach would require presidential leadership to mobilize American national will for a difficult fight against a determined enemy.

An alternative option might be the long-term containment of the Islamic State threat. This would also involve stabilizing the military situation in Iraq’s north and south but leaving IS militants in control of large sections of Syria and Iraq — trying to degrade their ability to strike globally and making clear that attacks on Western targets would bring massive retribution. This assumes a level of rationality (Western, secular rationality) on the part of Islamic State leaders that can only be called laughable. It is also the strategy most likely — after, say, a large-scale attack traced to the IS on an American city — to result in American divisions back in Mosul.

Or the Obama administration could continue to make a series of tactical adjustments to avoid further disaster while also avoiding setting out any definition of victory, which might become a standard against which it is judged. This might (with luck) run out the second-term clock; it would also leave a toxic mess for the next president.

Clearly, the Obama administration is undergoing an internal struggle to define its ultimate policy goal. Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey talks of a strategy to “initially contain, eventually disrupt, and finally defeat [IS] over time.” At the same time, unnamed White House officials consistently downplay the ambition of American goals in Iraq. And the president himself is a model of ambiguity, leaving the world to wonder if any of his various lines have a hint of red.

 Is it even possible for Obama to make the psychological adjustment from “the ender of wars” to “the sworn enemy of the Islamic State”? His record offers no reason for encouragement. But upon this unlikely transformation now depends the future of the Middle East and the security of America.

  (Washington Post Writers Group.Michael Gerson’s email address is [email protected])

Life’s little surprises, big & small

A Box of Soap
by Don Vowell

You’ll be surprised to learn that an encounter with black-legged Kittiwakes is the key to happiness.  I never saw it coming.

Think back to a meeting, event, appointment, or date you were dreading that actually turned out to be a pleasure.  Think back also to an outing you eagerly looked forward to that turned out sort of hum-drum.

That’s two kinds of happiness.  The anticipation can invigorate you for some time before the fact.  But the unexpected delight found where it was least expected is the more memorable by far.

A recent Washington Post article attempted scientific explanation.  Neuroscientist Robb Rutledge of the Max Planck Institute, the author of the quoted study, said – “Happiness is not about how well you’re doing in general, but rather if you’re doing better than expected.”

As the laziest person in America the immediate solution occurring to me was to simply lower expectations, but this level of pessimism might make you sort of unhappy in the space between surprises.

If you finally get the chance to take a friend to a concert by your favorite artist in the world, your anticipation can increasingly buoy your mood for several days.  If the show doesn’t quite live up to your expectations, those several days of elevated mood are not lost.

How you feel right now depends some on the balance between overall expectation and degree of surprise.  Rutledge’s study indicates that surprise matters more.  When you have a truly great meal at a restaurant it makes you much happier if you just had no idea it would be so good.  Had you counted on that wonderful meal the unforeseen treat would have been lost.  We have experienced this a few times because of our predilection for wandering into strange little restaurants when away from home.  Many times we just get strange little meals but once in a while we get an unforgettably fine meal.

We’ve just returned from Alaska.  My sister kindly included us in her retirement tour of the state.

We have seen some of Alaska so our expectations were high, but that left plenty of room for surprise. She booked passage on an Alaska Marine Ferry from Whittier to Valdez.  The compound amazement included being on that ferry, making a startlingly close pass to one of the icebergs feeding out of Columbia Glacier, spotting the Kittiwakes resting on a flat spot atop the iceberg, and actually negotiating all the knobs and dials on the camera to get a couple pictures while passing at 14 knots.  I was elated and even had a silly grin for a bit.

Now as I look back, the pictures are not crisp enough for serious enlargement and I wish I had a do-over.  None of that matters – the momentary elation cannot be reduced.

Nor can it be reproduced.  The other inevitable conclusion from this study is that happiness is impermanent – we are hard-wired to want more happiness.  I confidently look forward to more moments like that iceberg encounter.  That is what keeps us moving forward.

I have been absent from this space for a while because the capacity to surprise seemed lost.  You and I both can get tired of whiny liberal drivel.  Then I watched a special about poet and pacifist William Stafford.  He advised that if you feel stuck in what you write, lower your standards and keep going.  I might agree with those who believe my standards cannot be lower.  But maybe there will be a surprise that pleases us.

(Don Vowell lives in Keizer. He gets on his soapbox regularly in the Keizertimes.)

Marking 69 years with nuclear bombs

Do you ever feel lucky to be alive?  Most people do, especially those who are well and happy, when they reflect on the notion from time to time that they are, as the colloquial expression goes, “glad to still be around.”

I remind everyone that Aug. 6 marks the 69th anniversary of the first atomic bomb, a “simple” one named Little Boy, was dropped on the Japanese city of Hiroshima.  Three days later, on Aug. 9, 1945, another Japanese city, Nagasaki, received a more complicated bomb nicknamed Fat Man.  Afterwards, Japan soon surrendered and World War Two ended.

What about being lucky?  The scientists who invented the ultimate bomb didn’t know, whether or not, when detonated, it would cause a chain reaction that would blow the entire planet to smithereens.  There were a lot of people in Los Alamos holding their breath the morning of the first drop and were probably, figuratively speaking, still holding it a few days later when the more sophisticated version exploded.

However, what’s stunningly lucky for us earthlings is that, even though atomic and hydrogen bombs of earth-destroying magnitude are now known to be in the possession of the United Kingdom, China, India, Pakistan, North Korea and Israel, that another atomic or hydrogen bomb has not been dropped on city targets since 1945.  Of course, there were above-ground experimental detonations for years following 1945.

On Aug. 6, 1945, the possibility of the apocalypse passed from the exclusive hands of God into human hands, foretelling a future whose end could be certain should the most lethal weapon in all of human history be used by both sides in the real “war to end all wars,” the rallying cry for involvement in World War One.

We may have the largest stockpile of nuclear weapons although we read more about Iran’s quest to develop one more than the fact that our nuclear arsenal, of more than 4,800 ill-kept weapons with notable security breaches taking place rather regularly, should cause considerable pause.  While fun is made of the danger by late-night comics, there should be more talk about the risk considering the possible vaporization of the planet.

Many of our notables have commented on this matter here at home.  A former head of the U.S. Strategic Command, General Lee Butler, spoke to it some twenty years ago when he said that we had survived the new age of atomic weapons “by some combination of skill, luck, and divine intervention.” Further, he believed divine intervention to be the greatest factor in keeping the world from ruin.  In other words, unless a person believes God governs all earthly happenings, it’s been sheer, blind luck.

I’m not at all certain that the U.S. and the former Soviet Union were ever going to war because both sides knew it was the beginning of the end of anything resembling civilization.  We were always a superior power in every way to the U.S.S.R.: the Russians knew it and we knew it, although that would not necessarily have prevented an all-out donnybrook should things have gotten too dicey via the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962.

Nevertheless, there are ongoing threats of another world war with no holds barred like the serious horseplay underway now in Eastern Europe by Vladimir Putin.  Among multiple other possibilities for a nuclear showdown, there was the recent daredevil outing by Navy SEALS to kill Osama bin Laden in Pakistan that could have resulted in a military contest between the U.S. and Pakistan. President Obama, who promised to stop warring overseas, has now authorized airstrikes in Iraq in a futile effort to control the uncontrollable Middle East, placing the world closer to the “domino effect” with the ever-present H–bombs as the dark and foreboding backdrop.

Where do we stand now? I believe it is a near miracle that we have escaped destruction. The longer we and others tempt fate by placing in human hands the fate of the world, it may require more than mere hope for divine intervention to continue a miracle that’s lasted sixty-nine years effective today.

Former U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich wrote in the Huffington Post recently: “We must work together to support all efforts to get rid of nuclear weapons, not through appeals to violence but through the instinct to celebrate life.  Let us find a path so we can dismantle the destructive forces which paralyze any sense of compassion necessary for the survival of all life on this planet.  Instead, let us build technologies for sustainability and peace.”

 I heartily concur, Mr. Kucinich, as I would guess millions of other earthlings do.

(Gene H. McIntyre lives in Keizer. His column appears regularly in the Keizertimes.)

Political cartoon tells wrong story

To the Editor:

I was shocked to see in my local newspaper such a false representation of the nation of Israel and its leader Benjamin Netanyahu, posed as the perpetrators of violence in the recent conflict with the terror group Hamas.

While Israel is not perfect, the current conflict is not a complicated one to understand (albeit the western media is never thorough). Thousands of rockets have been fired at Israeli citizens in recent weeks, from Hamas terrorists who commit double war crimes by using their Palestinian civilians as human shields and their schools, hospitals and mosques as the very place they hide and shoot their rockets from.

What’s not told in the western media often enough, is that Israel sends out a warning to the people via text messages, phone calls, leaflets, and even a warning “knock” with a dud missile to tell the people living inside to get out, before Israel fires a missile to destroy the Hamas rocket launcher shooting from their location. The people living in Gaza are trapped by the bully Hamas, but Israel goes far and above to do its best to protect lives, even while destroying the arms and the weapons pointed at them.

I’ve been to Israel, and to put it in perspective, Oregon is twice the size. If we had any rockets (let alone thousands) being fired from Lincoln City at Keizer, by extremist terrorists who wanted nothing but the annihilation of the people in our town, I am pretty sure we would not tolerate it for one day. Israel has been battling this very right to exist as a nation not only of Jews, but Arabs, Palestinians and many other immigrants in peace and incredible economic productivity despite being under constant threat of war and death.  I realize a political cartoon is meant to provoke and sell newspapers, but this is totally inaccurate and a false representation of the State of Israel and Prime Minister Netanyahu.

Connie Miller
Keizer 

November election in Keizer

To the Editor:

How do you feel about having an election and you know the winner before you vote? I am referring to the election in Keizer when there may be no opposition for council positions and the mayoral spot. The people running for positions may be well suited for the job but it would be nice to have a choice.

It would be worthwhile in knowing how many people don’t think the candidates are suited for the job. If only one person runs for a position the candidate might think they have a mandate and everyone supports them and their ideas. Perhaps we should consider all the people who don’t vote for them as a vote against them.

I talked with several well educated Keizerites who don’t have a clue what the issues are in Keizer and they don’t care. They don’t take the time to study candidates either. For example, unless people read the Keizertimes or watch Channel 23, they don’t know how much compensation we pay our city management. Furthermore, they don’t have a hint as to how much tax money is spent on public art or money on Keizer parks. The only time most people pay attention is when their taxes are going up and not how their tax dollars are spent.

Bill Quinn
Keizer