Archive for Friday, December 23, 2011

Heard on the Hill: KU professor appears in NPR’s “Planet Money”; Kansas unlikely to institute cell phone ban in cars, Wichita legislator says; get your own KU paper garland pattern

December 23, 2011, 12:01 a.m. Updated December 23, 2011, 7:35 a.m.


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• Thanks to colleague Alex Garrison, who turned Heard on the Hill tipster and pointed out that a KU professor appears in the latest NPR “Planet Money” podcast.

They were talking about the return on investment you can get from lobbying members of Congress.

Raquel Alexander, a tax professor teaching in KU’s school of business, is quoted quite a bit. A transcript isn’t available yet, but she comes in at about 3:30 of the podcast.

It’s interesting stuff, and Heard on the Hill readers, of course, got a sneak peek on the research back in October.

UPDATE: Business professor Susan Scholz, a co-author on the research, also appears in the podcast, too, around 13:40.

• Here’s another article out of Wichita on the issue of cell phone driving bans. I wrote a bit about the NTSB recommendation recently, but this article goes a little more in-depth on the issue.

It quotes a Wichita-area lawmaker saying that a complete ban on cell phones in vehicles in Kansas isn’t likely any time soon.

And that doesn’t exactly fill KU professor Paul Atchley with Christmas cheer. When I told Atchley that I don’t routinely text and drive but do occasionally check my phone when it goes off, he told me to “Put it in the trunk.”

He’s pretty serious about this stuff, and his research backs him up.

“It’s based on solid evidence,” he told the Wichita Eagle. “It’s based on too many tragedies that have happened already.”

• If you’re still looking for some holiday decorations, you can use these KU patterns to make creations you can hang as paper garlands (I’m a bit of a humbug, apparently, as I had to look up what, exactly, a paper garland was).

They’re rather jaunty.

Hope everyone has a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah or whatever holiday you may be celebrating. I’ll be back here right after the holiday with more Heard on the Hill goodness.

• Actually, I’ll be holding down the fort here at Journal-World Headquarters here at Seventh and New Hampshire on Christmas Day, so if you’d care to send me some gifts in the form of tips for Heard on the Hill to, I sure wouldn’t mind.


kansasredlegs 6 years, 2 months ago

If the reason to ban cellphone is to avert tragedies, then take all distractions and substances out of the equation. By this rationale, we should immediately return to prohibition and ban the manufacture & sale of alcohol which causes far more death and destruction on our roadways than the distraction caused by cellphones, but we know this isn't going to happen.

The placement of nagging spouses and significant others in the trunk not a bad idea either.

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