mikewaz (Mike Wasikowski)

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Editorial: Local control

"Citizens want the right to vote because local elected officials have been dishonest about the huge increases imposed over the years."

I'd like to see a survey result that confirms this claim.

April 7, 2016 at 8:49 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Lawrence high school students create petition to ban Confederate flag districtwide

I would recommend that people who want to express pride in being a southerner find a way to express that pride that doesn't simultaneously express sympathy for a movement dedicated to preserving the legality of keeping black people as personal property.

January 30, 2016 at 2 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Editorial: Democrats’ dilemma

To say nothing of the number of signatures you'd have to collect to recall Governor Brownback (more than 400,000), recall elections in Kansas are constitutionally limited to a handful of grounds:

1) Felony conviction,
2) Misconduct in office, meaning "a violation of law by the officer that impacts the officer’s ability to perform the official duties of the office,"
3) Incompetence,
4) Failure to perform lawfully prescribed duties.

Further, the Secretary of State is the one who certifies that the grounds for a recall petition are valid. Can you see Kris Kobach certifying any grounds except for a felony conviction? I can't.

January 19, 2016 at 8:47 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Kansas to consider tightening limits on local property taxes

I respectfully disagree with your assertion that the analysis is simple. If analysis were easy, the military wouldn't have spent the greater part of a decade training me to be an analyst for them; they would have just programmed a computer to do my job for me and left me unemployed.

As you noted in an above comment, the numbers you used to develop your increase are aggregates. That destroys a lot of resolution that helps people figure out what caused the change in property tax revenues. Did the mill levies change over the timeframe? Did property values increase or decrease in that timeframe? Did people build more properties and expose themselves to more property taxes? Did people improve their properties in a deliberate attempt to increase the value of the property? Did plots of land get annexed at some point, leading to the property taxes for that land changing and being brought into the aggregate? Did the multiplication factor for a class of property change in that timeframe? Did certain properties get rezoned such that they changed the multiplication factor? Did some properties get a special property tax exemption and drag down the aggregates? Each of these factors (and probably some I didn't mention) has some impact on the aggregate property tax revenue for an area. Some of these factors are good things to see; some of them are bad; others are more ambiguous.

With regards to my specific question about your bias that you glossed over, I think it's important to consider that you are a proponent for the Association of Realtors. Based on your comment that "[P]roperty taxes have been a problem for a long time," it's safe to say that any analysis you would conduct might be framed in a manner to make increases in property taxes look as large as possible. A 240% increase in those seventeen years sounds pretty large to me! But if my property tax bill increased from $1800 to $1900 over that time, I'd say that's a pretty modest increase, and personally one I'd be more than able to pay.

I urge you and the association to look into hiring someone who is versed in the art of analysis. They could help you construct talking points that don't vaguely resemble propaganda.

January 11, 2016 at 6:26 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Kansas to consider tightening limits on local property taxes

Question: how biased is your analysis of property tax growth by the fact that you're a VP for the Kansas Association of Realtors, an organization that this article outright says wants the restrictions implemented in July of this year?

January 11, 2016 at 1:23 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Letter: Cruel move

How does bring refugees benefit the country? Let's see...

Madeline Albright escaped Czechoslovakia to get away from Hitler and came to America as a refugee. You might know her as Secretary of State under President Bill Clinton.

Albert Einstein similarly escaped Germany to get away from Hitler and came to America as a refugee. You might know him as a brilliant physicist who came up with the theory of general relativity.

Gloria Estefan escaped Cuba to get away from Fidel Castro and came to America as a refugee. You might know her as the singer of the Conga or for winning three Grammys.

Meb Keflezighi escaped Eritrea to get away from a thirty-year civil war and came to America as a refugee. You might know him as the winner of the 2014 Boston Marathon and silver medalist in the Athens Olympics marathon.

Sergey Brin escaped Soviet Russia to get away from anti-Semites and came to America as a refugee. You might know him as one of the founders of Google and current president of parent company Alphabet or as one of the richest people on the planet.

But sure, go ahead and tell me that bringing refugees to America doesn't benefit the country.

November 19, 2015 at 8:57 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Editorial: Naive thinking

You'd have a point if François Hollande hadn't just today announced that France will continue to welcome refugees.

http://abcnews.go.com/International/f...

November 18, 2015 at 12:32 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Editorial: Naive thinking

You are absolutely right, LJW Editorial Staff. We absolutely must consider all the risk factors before admitting refugees to America. In that vein, let me talk about a risk factor you didn't mention.

Paula Abdul is a world-famous singer/songwriter/choreographer with a string of #1 Billboard hits, a Grammy for her inventive video for "Opposites Attract," and two Emmys for her choreography. Her father was a Syrian immigrant to America.

Mitch Daniels is the current president of Purdue University, one of the best engineering universities in the country. Previously, he served as the director of the Office of Management and Budget and filled two terms as Governor of Indiana. His paternal grandparents were Syrian immigrants to America.

Kelly Slater is one of the greatest surfers on the planet, winning world titles eleven times over a nineteen year span. One of his great-grandfathers was a Syrian immigrant to America.

Jerry Seinfeld is a prominent comedian, famous for his wildly popular series Seinfeld and his stand-up sets. His maternal grandparents were Syrian immigrants to America.

Steve Jobs was a pioneer in the early computer revolution and the co-founder of Apple, whose many products are widely used worldwide today, and he was also one of the founders of Pixar, one of the most beloved animated movie production companies today. His biological father was a Syrian immigrant to America. For a double whammy, Steve Jobs's mother gave him up for adoption after her parents, irate about her dating a Muslim, threatened to completely cut her out of their lives.

Titans of industry, politics, sports, arts, the works. These are the results of us welcoming Syrian immigrants to America. If we do as you, LJW Editorial Staff, suggest, then we are risking the rejection of the future of our country and condemning the next Paula Abdul, the next Mitch Daniels, the next Kelly Slater, the next Jerry Seinfeld, the next Steve Jobs, the next titan of America to a merciless slaughter at the hands of brutal Daesh terrorists who want nothing more than to murder their fellow Syrians and Muslims and annihilate the things that make America great.

Oh, and by the way, that risk you're talking about, of refugees to America committing terrorist attacks? We've admitted 784,000 of them to America since 9/11. A grand total of three of them have been charged with aiding and abetting terrorist organizations overseas; none of them have been charged with plotting or executing a terrorist attack in America. That doesn't seem like too big of a risk factor to me.

November 18, 2015 at 8:12 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Brownback issues executive order opposing Syrian refugees relocating to Kansas

The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the LORD your God. - Leviticus 19:34

Governor Brownback must not be as serious a Christian as he lets on.

November 16, 2015 at 4:26 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

See who the leaders are in the Journal-World poll of the six finalists for the vacant Lawrence City Commission seat

This poll, and others done by Google Consumer Surveys, may be more scientific than previous ones done that performed no screening, but they're still reliant on an accidental sample. The only people surveyed were those who looked at an article on ljworld.com. How many people in Lawrence even haphazardly look at articles on this site?

September 28, 2015 at 2:18 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

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