By Diane Silver
Nope, I haven't fallen off the face of the Earth. I've been chained to the computer working on assignments that will bring in real cash (oh my), and had to cut back on blogging today. However, this is only a momentary burp.
While I was burning up the computer keys, the world just kept spinning. (Imagine) Here are a few links to what I find most interesting about today's news.
Kansas GOP Insider, often a well-informed and astute observer of the Kansas political scene, missed it with his/her prediction that ousted Republican Jim Ryun's early entry into the 2nd District Congressional race would keep others out. State Treasurer Lynn Jenkins has announced, and political folk from Topeka to D.C. are noting that Jenkins entry will create a huge problem for Ryun.
My take on the situation is that Democrat Nancy Boyda needs to be seriously concerned now that a moderate has entered the race. Boyda beat Ryun in November, in part, because she was clearly the sanest candidate on the 2nd District ballot.
Kansas House Speaker Melvin Neufeld, yet another Republican, seems to have mixed up community colleges with universities. His newest idea is for the good people of Lawrence, Manhattan, Emporia, Fort Hays and Pittsburg to tax themselves to pay for needed repairs at state universities.
Granted, I'm not objective. I live in Lawrence and would have to pay the increased tax, but does anyone else see how odd it is to claim that the rest of Kansas doesn't benefit from its state universities?
There is the whole eco deco thing (the idea that university research and resources help spur economic development in the state). There's also the fact that the universities serve thousands of Kansas students from outside the school's home counties.
Students from all 105 Kansas counties attend the University of Kansas. Of the approximately 20,500 students from Kansas who attend KU, about 16,300 are from counties other than Douglas, where KU is located.
If Melvin gets his way, then those of us who live in university towns will actually pay more for our kids college education, then Kansans who live in neighboring Shawnee County, for example. This isn't even remotely fair. It's also not smart.
Short-changing universities only short changes the entire state.