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Eugene Weekly : Views : 03.23.06

Viewpoint:

Park Central

A bait and switch plan

BY JERRY DIETHELM

You know those little puzzles, where you move a number to the side to maneuver another into the place you want it to go? Well, that's exactly the strategy needed to achieve the downtown central park, central public plaza, central market square that we've long been waiting for. This isn't a new idea. It's been in our Downtown Plan for years. It calls for a central gathering space downtown — our own version of Pioneer Courthouse Square. It calls out for a place to better accommodate our Farmers Market and Saturday Market and our own Festival of Flowers. We all know that Eugene needs a center to, well, center our celebrations of who we are together. [Read More]

 

Viewpoint:

Big Money

Get it out of politics.

BY HARRY LONSDALE

Oregon is one of only five states with no limits on campaign contributions. As a result, Big Money flows from wealthy people, corporations, and a variety of special interests to people running for office in our state — most of the money flowing to incumbents. And the money buys something. Certainly it buys access and, we all assume, it buys favorable treatment on legislative measures such as tax rates, environmental and other regulations, and on all of those other things of public interest — education and health care come to mind — that never seem to receive legislative hearings, let alone become law. [Read More]