I have known John [Kroger] since we both arrived at Lewis & Clark, and he is my friend [see "The Smartest Guy in the Room," WW, June 6, 2012]. We often don't see eye to eye on politics, and I don't support all of John's political decisions. But when I disagree with John, it is over the content of these matters, not a fantasy world based on tawdry speculation about his motives.

[WW implies] that John's reticence about his health is hypocritical given his penchant for government transparency. But neither John's desire for government transparency nor common sense demands the same candor regarding the lives of the people who work in government as it does of the government itself.

You impugn his integrity and suggest his illness was merely a ruse, but even your own article notes that he may have undergone surgery, which would surely provide a simple explanation for John's improved health. Regardless, there are myriad reasons why certain health issues might deter John from serving as attorney general but nevertheless accommodate his serving as Reed's president.

And you accuse John of hubris—one sentence after claiming he "bailed out when the going got tough." As I see it, John has weathered considerable criticism for doing his job, not for exceeding its bounds, and has taken responsibility for his mistakes. And he has demonstrated admirable humility in his decision not to run again. Typical political hubris this is not.

There is much worth telling in John's story, but, sadly, almost none of it is in this article.

—Geoffrey Manne
Lecturer in law, Lewis & Clark Law School

None of the unwashed masses who attend Reed [College] have given this a second thought. They know Kroger isn't going to do a thing about their pot, heroin and meth use...messy. Instead, he will earn his 375K the old-fashioned way: by going to meetings and eating lunch and going home early and snipping the roses. In the meantime, the unbathed, dreadlocked, dirty-clothed Reedies will do business the old-fashioned way: duck and cover, attack and hide, smoking their pot in the dark corners and talking ad nauseam about what Wittgenstein really meant. —"Emile Zola"

Kroger had a lot of upside initially [as attorney general]. I loved seeing him go after the University of Oregon cabal and the corruption within the Department of Energy. Unfortunately, he couldn't finish the job. Here's hoping he can help Reed build better community connections and increase enrollment. 



The difference between a neighborhood that evolves over time and a prefab-insto fauxberhood is the difference between night and day [see "Welcome to Con-Way Town," WW, June 6, 2012]. Dumping a touch of suburbia into the Alphabet District will kill off the reason this part of NW PDX is unique. It's already begun—those three- and four-story apartments that will never age well? Revolting.

—"s. ricketts"

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