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What is the most important issue for the Kansas Legislature in 2007?

Asked at Massachusetts Street on January 8, 2007

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Photo of Sharron Uhler

“Education should be their main focus. They need to concentrate more on history and the arts, and not just math and science.”

Photo of Dave Deck

“I think it’s health care. Getting people insurance and taking care of our elderly. They need to create programs to educate people about what they have access to.”

Photo of Brian Barbee

“They need to send a message to Washington any way they can to get our troops back home with their families.”

Photo of Cathy Lutz

“Probably school funding. I don’t think they’ve fully resolved it yet.”


sgtwolverine 11 years ago

Uh oh. This may not be a good OTS day.

trinity 11 years ago

bowhunter hit it on the head; nothin' like a bunch of unfunded mandates to make people crazy.

there's so many issues that are of great importance-it's really tough at least for me to pick one that stands over&above the rest.

Kelly Powell 11 years ago

the only people I know making state min is wait staff, and i know for a fact a good waiter makes bank on tips.

Kat Christian 11 years ago

Raising the state minimum wage. Currently it is at $2.65 the lowest of all states in this country. It is time Kansas caught with the rest of the U.S. states and raise it to match the Federal level or higher. Perferably $8.00 per hour. Why not they are getting paid 10x more an hour than this so why not help working poor people earn a little more of the pie? TIME TO RAISE THE STATE MINIMUN WAGE.

jonas 11 years ago

The same it is every year: stripping power from our bloated, federal beuracratic sinkhole and restoring primary power back to the individual states where it belongs.

sgtwolverine 11 years ago

Sunshine, most of the "working poor" earn above minimum wage. The Detroit News noted that the average minimum wage earner has a household income of about $50,000 -- meaning the average minimum wage earner isn't living independently. Please don't contribute to the misleading minimum wage panic.

The most important issue for any legislature should be learning to do less with the same -- or, even better, less with less.

boldaq 11 years ago

Getting mass-murderer George Tiller off the streets would be a good start. "The state of Michigan is the center of the American auto industry. The state of Florida is the center of the American juice industry. The state of Texas is the center of the American oil industry. What state is the center of the American abortion industry?

If I were asked the question a few years ago, my answer would be immediate: New York. The abortion policies of the state of New York are almost as extreme as those of the Republic of China. A woman in New York can receive a legal abortion, at taxpayer expense, for any reason, by any method, at any time during the nine months of a pregnancy.

Oddly enough, my answer would have been wrong. New York is not the center of the American abortion industry. Nor is California, New Jersey, Maryland, Illinois, or any other left-leaning state with a highly concentrated urban population.

The center of the American abortion industry is the state of Kansas. This comes as a surprise to many, since Kansans tend to be simple, down-to-earth, conservative people-the kind that one would least expect to find inside the walls of an abortion clinic.

Of all the states in this country, why Kansas? What makes Kansas special when it comes to abortion? The answer is simple: Kansas is home to George Tiller, the most prolific late-term abortionist in the entire western world."

beatrice 11 years ago

Skip zombie research, that is too far down the road and requires innovations in replacing dead tissue with stem cells. It will never get past the neo-cons. I think Kansas should instead open a Jurassic Park.

sgt, "The Detroit News noted that the average minimum wage earner has a household income of about $50,000 -- meaning the average minimum wage earner isn't living independently."

How many of those are youngsters working summer jobs or afternoons at Taco Bell and still living in their parents home? When you look at people making minimum wage who don't live with their parents, I'm sure the average household income drops significantly. That is where you find the working poor, and sadly it is a reality for many.

beatrice 11 years ago

Das, you are just talking nonsense and giving people false hope with talk of nanobot technology for zombies. Stem cell zombies are the only viable option. Nanobots lack the flesh-eating drive -- thus military potential -- of their newly-restored fleshy counterparts. And everyone knows that nanobot zombies can be taken out with electric shock waves, something a real zombie will just laugh at, ... well, you know, if they had a sense of humor.

sgtwolverine 11 years ago

Bea, that was sort of the point: the "working poor" is a much smaller group than portrayed, when it comes to actually earning only minimum wage.

sgtwolverine 11 years ago

Oh, and I vote for nanobot zombies. I'd be too worried about the real zombies not stopping after conquering the enemy.

UKept 11 years ago

Das and beatrice,

I don't know what schools you went to, but it obviously you have yet to get your P.H.D. in MAD Sciences. Everyone who's anyone knows that stem cell zombies are not only a red-light ethically, but also expensive and politcially incorrect. Nano-technology, while promising on so many levels, is at the moment a pipe dream, and anyone who truly hopes to pursue the zombie cause AT THIS MOMENT IN TIME is looking at genetically mutating viruses in tandem with flesh-eating bacteria. Maybe it's staid, maybe it's mainstream; but which would you rather have--a head in the clouds, a laptop and a dream, or a full on army of good old fashion, genetirally mutated, blood-thirsty, brain-eating minions.

jonas 11 years ago

Zombie's always be a startin' with da voodoo magic, honey.

/about as good as my speaking island dialect impression //not saying much

sgtwolverine 11 years ago

Dang it, TOB, I'm not even a Kansan (let alone hard-working!) and now I want a hot, buttery biscuit.

bigcat 11 years ago

Ok, let's talk about raising the minimum wage. Here is what is going to happen if we have that dramatic minimum wage increase to $8.00, people will lose their jobs. Whenever we have seen a somewhat dramatic increase in minimum wage we have also seen an increase in the state's unemployed. What happens is that when a company is forced to pay more they downsize to save money. We also need to look at the price of living. Kansas, as a whole, is very cheap to live in. Even in the more populated areas we aren't even close to Florida, Texas, and California. If you get outside of major towns it is ridiculous how much it costs to live. My brother lives in a town in Southeast, Ks and has bought a 3000 square feet house for under $130,000 that is gorgeous and less then 20 years old. If you are making minimum wage it might be better to live outside of the suburban sprawl. If we look at national averages we are probably pretty close in ratio to minimum wage to price of living. We really need to increase funding for education and that needs to be priority #1. We are losing teachers right and left due to the pay, hours, and spreading them too thin. If you want to truly complain about minimum wage, when I was a high school teacher and coach I figured out one day that I actually made a little over $2.00 an hour and no tips (Ha). Teaching is one of the few jobs that you can't leave it at 3:00, go home, and then go back to work the next day. You go to work at 7:00 teach until 3:00, maybe have an hour break throughout the day unless a student needs help with homework during that time, and many times during that hour you are making copies. If you are coach you coach until 6:00 and then you have grading and preparing for the next day. All this for less then $30,000 a year. Don't get me wrong I knew what I was getting into and most teachers do, but also understand that if anyone has a right to complain for not being paid it is teachers. We need to keep the good ones and continuously train the others, allow them to have funds to purchase good equipment, books, and learning materials, give them the funding they deserve. Another thing I really believe we should look at is the consolidation of smaller schools. If you are a 1A-3A school that is public we need to consolidate if they are within 20 miles of each other. These small schools are costing the Kansas taxpayer a ton of money each year and a legislature needs to have the guts to get this across. Just some thoughts.

beatrice 11 years ago

Speaking of Pandora's Box, have any of you tried out ? It is a music site that is terrific -- streaming music based on your personal preferences, finding similar music you might enjoy -- say you like Rob Zombie, and next thing they might play one of his early tracks playing under White Zombie. Who knows, they might even play Zombie Gutz. It is all very cool.

I am confused about the salt issue -- have the Phelps clan been given too much or too little salt? Those zombies have certainly been acting up and need to be stopped.

sgtwolverine 11 years ago

TOB: "I find that being faster than the slowest person in your group is a good method of preventing oneself from becoming a zombie dinner."

With that method, you have to keep finding new groups. Otherwise, at some point you become the slowest person in your group.

sgtwolverine 11 years ago

Bea, maybe someone thought the Phelps were actually slugs, and gave them salt in an effort to stop them.

If so, it was well-intentioned but obviously wrong!

Are the Steelers going to hire Mr. Grimm? It's a million headlines waiting to happen.

sunflower_sue 11 years ago

wow! after 10 already? time flies!

as per today's ?: saving the rainforests

beatrice 11 years ago

Questions -- If a rise in the minimum wage brings about higher unemployment, then why don't we have higher unemployment today than when the major changes in the number of people covered went into effect in 1978? Doesn't higher wages just mean that some jobs become less cost effective, thus changes happen in the market place to adjust?

This is not the same thing as people being fired. For instance, it is no longer cost efficient to have people pump your gas, answer phones (Please press 1 for customer assistance), pour your soft drink and bus your table at the fast food restaurant. Yet we are at 4.5% unemployment. How is that possible if all those people are no longer doing those jobs? Why do the unemployment numbers in countries that have no minimum wage tend to be higher than in the U.S.? And should there be a minimum zombie wage?

beatrice 11 years ago

After the cucumber and honey bath and deep-tissue massage, of course.

EasilyAmused 11 years ago

Beatrice - I love - I listen to some of my stations for hours, and then I have about ten that I listen to if I am in that kind of mood...

beatrice 11 years ago

Zombies can't pro-create and their "habits" are unnatural, so I think giving them marriage rights is going too far.

prioress 11 years ago

Zombies are mindless slaves. They are not self-aware and are not particularly dangerous... ======= Except for Republican zombies. Fortunately, their species may be at risk.

sgtwolverine 11 years ago

TOB, can I have special rights, too? Can I can I? Pleeeeease?

Tychoman 11 years ago

Banning the procreation of the human race until we wise up and take responsibility for ourselves. And world peace.

justthefacts 11 years ago

How about requiring that the Legislators follow the same rules they impose upon everyone else? Currently the legislature is exempt from many of the laws and policies they believe should apply to all other public agencies and employees. E.g. Open government laws and public bid laws ( - LJW why not do a story on how much has been spent to pay for the $40 million over-estimate [so far there are years left on the work] renovation of the state house, including things like hand-etched lead crystal globes and experts in historic restoration that can be hired without any oversight or bidding...?? We can't afford more for teachers, or other things, but we can afford cyrstal globes?).

Personally, I'd like to see only one more law passed; All new laws passed by lawmakers must impact (and cost) them directly, or they cannot vote on the proposal. If it only applies to "other people" they can't vote on it.

That should cut down on the waste and hypocrisy, just a bit.

sgtwolverine 11 years ago

State? Forget state. It should be a national holiday. Or an international holiday! Pirate talk is too grand for one state, or even one nation. (Unless that nation is Piratania. But I'm pretty sure that nation doesn't exist. Hey, who wants to start a new country?)

jonas 11 years ago

RETICENT_IRREVERENT: Well, that's the other extreme, yes. I may be a naive idealist, but I still hold out hope that society can find a middle ground or compromise about most things.

O-Bob: While not necessarily controlled, your average herd of zombies can be manipulated in certain ways. The best way to go "fishing." That is, to use a small truck-mounted metal crane to hoist one or more live babies (or scantily clad women whichever you prefer) off tether wires to dangle in front of target group of zombies, who will then mindlessly shuffle or terrifyingly sprint after the truck depending on what breed of zombies you are currently working with (which is why you should ask your dealer what breed when procuring or producing your zombies). Through artful bait and switch tactics, it is possible then to lure your zombies into an opposing group and slip out before the killing starts.

acg 11 years ago

Cowbell. That's my answer. We obviously need more cowbell.

budwhysir 11 years ago

I believe the fast food controll amendment will be the biggest event of the year.

This bill will not only control price increases, it will also effect the price of oil and tax control

Kathy Theis-Getto 11 years ago


"Tomorrow's question: should Talk-Like-a-Pirate Day be an official state holiday?"

LOL! Yes, it should, nobody should have to live without a day of pirate pickup lines!

Top Ten Pickup lines for use on International Talk Like a Pirate Day (We came up with these in an effort to interest The Other Dave (Letterman) in TLAPD. His staff liked 'em, but alas, his show was"dark" the week of Sept. 19.)

10 . Avast, me proud beauty! Wanna know why my Roger is so Jolly?

  1. Have ya ever met a man with a real yardarm?

  2. Come on up and see me urchins.

  3. Yes, that is a hornpipe in my pocket and I am happy to see you.

  4. I'd love to drop anchor in your lagoon.

  5. Pardon me, but would ya mind if fired me cannon through your porthole?

  6. How'd you like to scrape the barnacles off of me rudder?

  7. Ya know, darlin', I'm 97 percent chum free.

  8. Well blow me down?

And the number one pickup line for use on International Talk Like a Pirate Day is :

  1. Prepare to be boarded.

Seriously, school funding.

boldaq 11 years ago

The arrest and conviction of Tiller the Killer.

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