Commentary

Wed
02
May

The tax work continues

Rep. Steven Johnson
Capitol View

The wrap up legislative session resumed April 26 to complete the 2018 legislative year. Education funding, budget and tax issues are at the top of the agenda.

Consensus revenue estimates were shared from the April 20 meeting and came in above those set last November. Revenues increased by just over $200 million for the current fiscal year. I estimate those numbers may be even larger as we move to the end of the fiscal year June 30.

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Wed
25
Apr

The beginning of life

THE WAY WEST
By "The Cowboy" Jim Gray

They say that life begins at 40, but for 12-year-old Jennie Ball life was truly taking a turn that she would mark for the rest of her life as her beginning.

The year was 1879. Her father surprised Jennie and her brother with the announcement that they were leaving Warsaw, Ind, for the farm life in northwestern Kansas.

“Up to then a farm to me, meant going to an uncle’s and riding horses, morning to night, (and) petting the calves and lambs. So I had a wonderful vision of ‘life on our farm’ in Kansas.”

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Wed
25
Apr

Time for voters to step up

Jerry Marsh
Political Bites

Most, if not all, readers know of the recent passage of a bill funding Kansas education to the tune of $500 million over the next five years. What interested me most about the passage was the effort to extract legislative approval of a constitutional amendment depriving the Kansas Supreme Court of jurisdiction regarding “suitable provision for finance of the educational interests of the state.” (Article 6, Section 6 of the Kansas constitution) Unfortunately, the effort failed. I support the amendment.

The anticipated effect of the amendment has been misrepresented, most recently in my reading by an opinion piece in the Salina Journal: “No districts or parents could sue for equitable and adequate funding, as the Kansas Constitution mandates.“ I have read the amendment, and to make sure I interpreted it correctly, I contacted Rep. Steven Johnson and he confirmed my interpretation.

Wed
18
Apr

Ag can’t afford trade war

Sen. Jerry Moran
Others Say

When people in rural Kansas talk to me about a farm crisis or economic depression, they unfortunately aren’t talking about the dust bowl of the 1930s or farm credit crisis of the 1980s — they’re talking about the ongoing crisis in farm country today where low commodity prices and severe drought have pushed many agricultural producers to the edge of an economic cliff.

America’s trade relationships are, now more than ever, tied to the success of rural America, and we must make certain we negotiate responsibly so that our farmers and ranchers can continue to make a living by feeding and clothing the world.

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Wed
18
Apr

BEST PRACTICES

John Schlageck
Insight

When it comes to protecting the land and improving the environment, farmers continue to lead the way and do their part. As this nation celebrates Earth Day, April 22, farmers and ranchers remain committed to protecting the environment using modern conservation and tillage practices.

Farmers and ranchers will tell you their fondest wish remains to pass their land on to their children. They work years, often a lifetime, to leave a legacy of good land stewardship. Most farmers learned about conservation and respect for the land from their parents.

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Wed
11
Apr

One man’s dream

THE WAY WEST
By "The Cowboy" Jim Gray

At the close of the War with Mexico in 1848, California was ceded to the United States in an agreement known as the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. Almost before the ink was dry a movement was begun to improve communications between east coast and the new Pacific coast acquisition.

In that year an overland mule-train express service was proposed for mail delivery across the western territories.

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Wed
11
Apr

ECMC celebrates 120th

By Beth Vallier
Special to the I-R

Effective leaders do not try to go it alone, but rather work within their communities to bring about needed change.

Developing effective partnerships were some of the first actions Drs. Harry O’Donnell and H. Z. Hissem engaged in when in 1897 they established the first public hospital in Ellsworth.

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Wed
04
Apr

Chisholm changed everything

THE WAY WEST
By "The Cowboy" Jim Gray

The name Jesse Chisholm was already legend when he relocated his family from Indian Territory to the confluence of the Arkansas and Little Arkansas Rivers in the fall of 1864. By that time, Chisholm had been trading on the Southern Plains for 30 years.

Jesse was born approximately 1805-1806. He was in the early migration of Cherokees to Arkansas in 1810. As he grew to manhood he learned his father’s business of trading among the Western Cherokees. Along the banks of the Arkansas River the Cherokees thrived. Traders floated down the river in canoes and flatboats laden with furs bartered among the wild prairie tribes west of Arkansas.

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Wed
04
Apr

Stop the shenanigans

Jerry Marsh
Political Bites

Facebook has been hammered for violating the privacy of users in a voter manipulation effort. I am reluctant to blame Facebook for the fact that users allowed themselves to be suckered. I am reluctant to blame Facebook for complicity in election shenanigans that may have influenced voters one way or another. Voter misinformation has played a role in American politics for what? Forever.

The voter manipulation efforts that most concern me are those perpetrated by elected officials, e.g. Kansas Secretary of State and gubernatorial candidate Kris Kobach. While pretending to protect the integrity of the voting process, they work to suppress it with bogus claims of voter fraud, and manufactured regulations that deter thousands of citizens from voting.

Wed
28
Mar

Things can get worse

Jerry Marsh
Political Bites

Just when you expected things to get worse; they do. March 22, 2018, Donald Trump announced the dismissal of H. R. McMaster as National Security Advisor to be replaced by John Bolton on April 9, 2018. The specter of this appointment has been looming for several weeks. Expect Mr. Bolton to be the consummate Yes-Man in support of Trump’s most dangerous moves.

Anyone looking forward to going to war in the Middle East and North Korea will be thankful for this appointment. There are few in the country more hawkish than Mr. Bolton. He wrote recently, “It is perfectly legitimate for the United States to respond to the current ‘necessity’ posed by North Korea’s nuclear weapons by striking first.” For readers with a taste for nuclear war, Mr. Bolton is your man.

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