JOSH FEIT: You're an idiot and a complete know-nothing asshole, though I am sure that you realize that already. It is indeed a good thing that there are people with a sense of humor and intellect like Sherman Alexie to point this out to the rest of us ["Relevant Contradictions," Feb 27]. Crawl back in your hole and leave the rest of us alone, loser.

Dave, via e-mail


STRANGER: After reading your ad hominem-laced rant on Sherman Alexie's speech at the February 15 peace march, I gotta say it was heepum big-nice of ya to give him a turn atop the precious Stranger soapbox. "Relevant Contradictions" proved without a doubt that Alexie is a graceful, witty intellect and a class act.

Everyone knows that finding a few cornball hippies among a crowd of 30,000 antiwar protesters is a cinch. Now try this: Next time a couple hundred folks demonstrate in support of invading Iraq, send Josh Feit out to locate the most accomplished and acclaimed author, poet, essayist, and filmmaker among their crowd.

Ron Carnell, via e-mail


STRANGER: I'm glad you allowed Sherman to respond to the pasting you gave him two weeks ago. It was only fair to give him a chance to respond, and he proved that he is a very gracious man with a fine sense of humor and probably not a wicked bone in his body.

However, I think Alexie's response also illustrates that political lefty-liberals in this country are more adrift and lost at sea than ever. Getting Bush out of office is a great objective, but what then? Apparently Clinton-Gore were just fine, even though they presided over a period of unparalleled corporate corruption (driven in part by deregulatory initiatives and international trade agreements that Bush also supports) and a time when the disparity between rich and poor grew wider than at any time in the history of this country. Their triangulated response to right-wing attacks during the Clinton administration was to "reform" welfare along Republican lines and reinvent themselves as the party of the balanced budget, with Alan Greenspan as their new guru.

The Democrats are weak and ineffectual, incapable of defending themselves when their programs are caricatured as "the welfare state," when their reputations are reduced to "tax-and-spend liberals," etc. They are terrified of being labeled soft on terror abroad and pilloried as tax-and-spend liberals at home, and their Clinton-era economic miracle has proven to be a miasma of bankrupt speculation, corporate flight to sweatshops in poor countries, deregulation leading to Enron rip-offs, and welfare reforms that proved their betrayal of the working poor in this country. Next they will approve Bush's federal judicial nominees with weak protest, and wring their hands when the courts start dismantling whatever is left of the social reforms that couldn't be dismantled through legislative and budgetary processes.

So what's the alternative, Sherman? John Kerry? Joe Lieberman? Dick Gephardt? What would they do differently in Iraq or at home?

Ken Stump, via e-mail


STRANGER: I've always admired and respected Sherman Alexie, and I was thrilled to see he submitted an article to this week's Stranger. The last thing I expected was to respect Josh Feit after reading Alexie's article. But really, let's face it: Josh Feit's war of words with Sherman Alexie is like a little kid with a peashooter going after a man with nuclear weapons. He's so out of his intellectual league, I had to forgive his foolish insults and consider him gutsy, at least. Kudos to The Stranger for printing Alexie's lucid, funny, concise, and intelligent response. It's the best thing I've ever read in your paper.

Karina Gronnvoll, via e-mail


AMY JENNIGES: Bravo! Your latest article on the plight of Aurora Avenue merchants to maintain a viable business community shines ["Highway to Hell," Feb 27]. You obviously did your research and your writing shows that you understand the issues. Your logic clearly illustrates the mayor's foolishness in pushing this bus corridor over better ways to foster mass transit in Seattle. Keep up the excellent reporting!

Clarice Keegan, Land Use and Transportation Chairperson, AAMA


STRANGER: Amy Jenniges' recent article "Mayor to Cap Hill: Drop Dead" [Feb 6] was dead wrong when it concluded that the Nickels administration had abandoned its commitment to the Broadway neighborhood.

The City's Office of Economic Development is actively working with Broadway businesses to develop strategies to support the continued success of existing businesses and attract new ones to the neighborhood. Together, the city is working with businesses to identify ways to ensure that Broadway is a safe, clean, and vibrant place to live, shop, and do business.

Jenniges' suggestion that the demise of Businesses [of] Broadway (Broadway's Business Improvement Area [BIA] administrator) was a consequence of the city's negligence also could not be further from the truth. The city terminated its contract with Businesses [of] Broadway upon discovery that the organization had run up nearly $90,000 of debt--leaving the city to pay off overdue bills and outstanding creditors. Despite this, we are working with ratepayers to ensure that Broadway businesses continue to receive street cleaning and other services that are paid for through the BIA's self-assessing fees.

One of the top priorities of Mayor Greg Nickels' administration is to revitalize the city's struggling neighborhood business districts, including Broadway. In the meantime, I encourage all your readers to shop, dine, and enjoy Broadway--one of the city's most unique and exciting neighborhoods.

Jill Nishi, Director, Office of Economic Development, City of Seattle


STRANGER: Regarding Eli Sanders' piece on the Garfield High shooter: I feel like I've been yanked around by the nose with this article, pushed into making certain conclusions ["The Shooter," Feb 27]. If you want to wonder why this school shooting didn't get the attention paid to others, and if you want to wonder why this kid's sentence was lighter than those of other shooters, let's remember one thing: He. Didn't. Kill. Anyone.

Jim Drew, via e-mail


STRANGER: Articles keep popping up in this weekly rag about wars and no wars; articles by anti-antiwar protesters telling those whining noise boxes in the street to shut their sentimental little mouths, etc. This rag's been fucking consumed by this speech lately, both in the articles and in the letters to the editor.

Well, Frank Hebrew, for one, thinks it's time to break this vicious cycle of back-and-forth. So, here's a list of things I'd like you to start writing about soon:

(1) Interviews, including photos, of Lusty Lady dancers where you omit any actual morals-to-the-story or any type of sociological insight, but instead just describe them as the cute little sexpots that they are. You know, throw in a quote or two about when she danced for two hot girls making out in the two-way mirror booth or something.

(2) An article ostensibly about the Seattle Needle Exchange or some shit, but where in paragraphs 13-19 you actually explain to all of us wide-eyed readers, via a quote from "Frog--19-year-old street junkie," where we can score some good narcs when we need to.

(3) A record review for some band most of us haven't heard of, and thus, one that could probably benefit from a good review of the music. But instead your reviewer spends the whole review very cleverly talking about this one time when he did DMT on the lookout towers at Magnuson Park and pulled out his penis, and when he did, this car drove by thumping bass and that's what the record sounds like.

(4) Any experiment and/or investigative report based on the writers going out and getting trashed on The Stranger's dime.

(5) Something where--and I swear to our fucking Lord above that these are my favorites--some Stranger "features" writer (read: the serious guy) forgets that he isn't Seymour Hersh and publishes a 19,500-worder on some really small occurrence that happened on the Ave where some fucking cop held an Ave rat's wrist too firmly or something.

So, there it is. Thought I'd help get your shit back on track. Oh, and by the way, seriously--shut the fuck up you sappy annoying protesters.

Frank Hebrew, via e-mail

DEPT. OF CORRECTIONS: Last week, we printed an incorrect phone number for the Tin Hat Bar & Grill. The correct number is 782-2770. We regret our dumb error.