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Dreaming Big: Success in Kansas foster care! »

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By Dr. JAMIE SCHWANDT and AMBER BEACH HARDACRE I spent most of my small town Kansas childhood on the fast track to a life destined for failure. My parents were plagued with addiction, and because of that, I was surrounded by drugs, alcohol, and depression at an early age. This created an environment of limits—limited […]

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REVIEW: ‘Pitch Perfect 2’ is a Billboard hit, not a 5th Symphony »

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I’ll be the first to admit, I really came around on the first “Pitch Perfect” movie. I initially scored it a 4/6, but in the time since the film was released, it has easily climbed to a 5/6 in my books and it may or may not have seen repeated use when it was saved […]

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HAWVER: Democrats do GOP colleagues a solid in tax hike debate »


Ever do a little, polite, considerate favor for a friend, maybe trimming the grass on the sidewalk clear to your neighbor’s driveway, not just stopping at the property line? Well, we saw one of those little, considerate favors last week on the floor of the House when legislators debated that tax-increase bill, the one that […]

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Waymaster: From the Dome to Home »

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May 15, 2015 Troy L. Waymaster, State Representative, Kansas House District 109 Tax Plans Emerge With the ninetieth day of the Legislative Session looming, which was Saturday,May 16, we did see the emergence of two vastly different tax solution plans voted out of the House Taxation Committee. The first tax plan, House Bill 2430, is […]

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REVIEW: ‘Mad Max: Fury Road’ a lovely romp through the wasteland »

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“Mad Max: Fury Road” is a volatile piece of filmmaking that may be taking second chair to “Pitch Perfect 2” in terms of box office numbers, but it has undoubtedly won both critical acclaim and the hearts and minds of long-time fans of the franchise. I will share in the critical acclaim for “Fury Road,” […]

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Hope and change in 2016 »

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The hope is gone, unless there is change! Anybody that reads me knows I am anti-Democrat and I make it clear why. I make no apologies. Readers should also know by now I have issues with Republicans in Washington also, but not near as many. In my writings, I have presented fact after fact why […]

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Exploring Kan. Outdoors: Primitive survival in modern times »


I used to have a book that showed numerous ways Native Americans accomplished tasks like trapping wolves and catching geese that were essential to their survival. Before the days of steel knives, firearms and grocery stores, they relied on knives, arrow heads, spear points and tools made from flint to kill and skin game, and […]

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Mixed intelligence on Iraq War persists »

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A big news story of this week became the Iraq war. The question of what we know today would you have started the invasion of Iraq? That question was asked of presidential candidate Jeb Bush. That became a difficult question for him as over a 4 day period he was still trying to explain himself. […]

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Creation of the grocery nanny state well underway »


Republicans may like to rail against big government. But here in Wisconsin — where conservative lawmakers just introduced a bill to dramatically restrict what people can buy with their own food stamps — Republicans want to cook up a new kind of nanny state. This isn’t a new idea altogether. Recipients of the Supplemental Nutrition […]

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INSIGHT KANSAS: Racing Louisiana down the revenue well »

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Since Sam Brownback was elected governor in 2010, the model state for Kansas has been Texas. No surprise there. Texas has made a no-income-tax model work for some time, and Brownback’s close personal friendship with former Texas Gov. Rick Perry means the two share plenty of ideas. But “Brownback’s Bros” is a trio instead of […]

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Tattooed Jesus, yoga and the debate over religion in schools »


Legal battles over when and where to draw the church-state line on school endorsement of religion can be a nightmare for administrators, a headache for judges and a payday for lawyers. Consider the recent lawsuit in Lubbock, Texas over an advertisement a company called Little Pencil wanted to display during the football games played at […]

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The art of teaching: Look me in the eye »


Professor Bill Brett was a wonderful lecturer. He filled the blackboard with meaningful and organized notes. Then, while erasing the board, he asked us questions. Somehow he could always detect who had not paid attention or who did not understand. Since I was a “field kid” growing up, I knew a lot of biology. So […]

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Race to the White House: Send in the clowns »

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Hardly a day goes by that another candidate doesn’t announce his or her intention to run for the presidency. One day it’s Carly Fiorina, the next it’s Mike Huckabee, Bernie Sanders, or Hillary Clinton, even. It’s like the circus — when the little car rolls into the center ring and a clown gets out, then […]

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