Emporia, KS

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Something to Think About


Steve Sauder is president of Emporia's Radio Stations, Inc. the owners of KVOE-AM 1400, Country 101.7 and Mix 104.9. Steve has been in a leadership position with ERS, Inc., since 1987.

July 29, 2015

Dear Governor Brownback,


Steve Sauder again assuming you know what they say about chickens?

They always come home to roost!

You will soon have consequences to deal with you won’t be able to explain away like you do when you push Kansas poor people around, cut out programs for the mentally ill, take benefits from the elderly, discriminate against alternative life styles and cut programs for Kansas children.

There is a common thread running through the groups mentioned above – most of them – especially the poor and children – have very limited or no way to argue with you.

You are the best we have ever seen at deflecting, redirecting and misinforming people on topics on which you don’t have good answers.

But, Mr. Governor, Kansas teachers could be your chickens coming home to roost!. No doubt you have pushed them around and disrespected them, but Kansas teachers may just get the last laugh.

Here’s my case: From Monday’s Gazette, Richard John Schrock and Kansas Board of Education’s 2014-2015 Licensed Personnel Report – it says last year 654 teachers left Kansas to teach in another state. That number is up from 331 in 2010 & 11. Plus teachers leaving the profession, but not retiring rose from 416 to 740 in the same time frame.

It’s pretty obvious the teachers haven’t been much of a foe for you. You change the rules when you don’t like them and bully teachers using your all powerful, but not very creative legislature and you even took away their bargaining rights, but you cannot force them to teach. Teachers are moving out of Kansas and quitting at a record pace! This is growing crisis.

Who will you blame Mr. Governor when Kansas doesn’t have enough teachers to fill its classrooms?

That day is coming and you will be hard pressed to blame anyone but yourself.

Cluck, cluck…….

July 22, 2015

If we were developing a model for a prototype ESU student I may have interviewed one on Saturday Morning SportsTalk last Saturday.

          Marcus Erkel grew up in Arizona and came to Emporia State from Pima Community College in Arizona back when Brian Embery was the Hornet baseball coach. Now he didn’t exactly distinguish himself on the baseball field, but he did find a wife, a career and a home.

          Marcus agreed Saturday morning the odds of him staying in Emporia were like a thousand to one.

          The story is Marcus met and married Mandy Ledford an Emporia girl. They have two children and she is an insurance executive. He is an ESU graduate and taught in our public schools for three years.

          Marcus’ opportunity at the golf course came after the untimely death of Rich Jaggard. Erkel is in the PGA’s development program and will be a full fledged PGA Pro before long.

          More importantly Marcus is doing a super job with Emporia golf. His shop is well stocked; his staff is courteous, well informed and capable. He is willing to work with any and all to make the golf course available for events. The Kansas High School Activities Association loves Emporia and holds many tournaments here.

          Marcus is working hard to build golf in Emporia. Note: Starting New at Golf or SNAG for youngsters starting at 4 years of age! They use oversized clubs and balls; bright colors and music to introduce kids to the sport and it’s only $10 for a three day class.

          Then there’s Junior Golf which doubled in size this year. Family Days are Sunday at three and they allow the whole family to play golf for one fee. Marcus offers private or group lessons and there is a weekly Lady’s Day and Men’s Night and lots of different tournaments for the competitive types.

          Marcus also suggested he was a willing “babysitter” at the golf course. That would be for youngsters old enough to take care of themselves that wanted to spend most of a day at the course. I think its $8.50 to play all day.

          This is kind of a “Feel Good Friday” on Wednesday, but Marcus Erkel is succeeding in making golf and the Emporia Golf Course a real asset to our community. For that we say “thank you Marcus.”

          I’m Steve Sauder

July 15,2015


Royal’s baseball! You have to love our guys right now. Everything is going the “Boy’s in Blue” way. Ned Yost is no longer a “dunce” and life is really good.

          Last year’s Royal success was a longtime coming.

          Twenty-nine years to be exact since the Royal’s beat the Cardinals in the World Series.

          How about a little Royals history lesson? They lost to the Yankees three times – 76, 77, & 78 before finally beating the Yanks in 1980 befor losing to the Phillies in the Series 4-2.

          Best memory for me was 1977 game 5 in KC. We took Karen Yewell our baby sitter and big Royal’s and Freddie Patek fan to that Sunday night game. The Royal’s took a 3-1 lead into the ninth, but brought ace starter Dennis Leonard in to close out the game –bad decision – the Yankees plated three runs and won the series.

          In 1981 KC lost in 3 straight to A’s. In 1984 the Royals returned to the playoffs, but lost in the ALCS to the Tigers.

          1985 was cool coming from down 3 games to one and beating Toronto in the ALCS before they beat up on St. Louis 11-zip in game 7.

          Best memories - taking eighth grade son Brady to game late in season as Royals roared to the pennant and George Brett chased a .400 batting average. And, game 7 of World Series. John Patton and I had gone together on tickets. I offered him both tickets for game 6 if I could have both for game 7 – if one occurred. Don Deckinger is one of my heroes. After the Royals won my wife had the good sense to get a cup full of dirt from the infield at the K. Little packets of World Series dirt made great stocking stuffers that Christmas.

          Now back to reality. I’m not sure what happened last night in All Star game, but I do know the Royal’s Nation should be really proud of their All Star voting efforts. Especially when you consider Kansas City is the second smallest fan base in major league baseball.

          The Royals are currently 52 and 34 with 76 games left to play. If they play .500 baseball the Royal’s will finish with 90 victories. The Tigers won the Central last year with 90 victories. If KC wins 60% of remaining game like they have done so far they end up with 97.6 wins! Can you say Pennant?

          Time to love our Royal’s!        

          I’m Steve Sauder


July 8, 2015

Something to think about for many is Obamacare the code name for the Affordable Care Act which President Obama says has “surpassed his wildest expectations.”

          Our President has celebrated many successes. After a shaky start the numbers of Obamacare enrollees topped the 11 million mark after the 2015 Open Enrollment period. Using government numbers the uninsured number in America dropped to 11.9%. About 3 million of those with insurance were youngsters allowed to stay on their parent’s plans.

          Last week the Supreme Court relived pressure concerning the constitutionality for the controversial plan. Many Americans now have healthcare that previously did not. Among these are people with pre-existing conditions and others that were uninsurable.

          Despite all these positives there are many who question the wisdom and long term workability of Obamacare.

          The questions start with unkept promises.

          Patrons were promised by the President three things: they could keep their doctors; keep their plans intact and that premiums would go down due to increased efficiency.

          Unfortunately these promises have not been kept. And, the other shoe is starting to drop with renewal rates for people who have had health insurance all along are starting to skyrocket in many places.

          Economics don’t lie!

          If more people have coverage and those new folks include many people with conditions the insurance companies were previously not willing to cover somebody has to pay.

          President Obama is calling out state regulators concerning rate increases suggesting they need to do a better job of checking out the need for rate increases.

          If Obamacare is what we remember President Barack Obama for - will it be for its’ great success or the opposite? Only time will tell!

          Now there’s something to think about and I’m Steve Sauder.

July 1, 2015

These little talks are aptly titled “Something to think about…….”

Today we truly have “something to think about” with the thorny issue of “Same – Sex Marriage” being defined by the highest court in our land. The reaction has been predictable – a big split!

For one side it is recognition of their rights and the ability to enter into a contract that has wide ranging implications.

On the other as evidenced by the thoughtful words of two ministers on the front page of Monday’s Gazette these actions represent nothing less than sin.

One pastor said “I really pray for them; my church prays for them. It’s not any different from any other sin,”

It’s hard not to conclude is he is judging these people and their actions.

Yet, when I open my Bible it says “Do not judge others…….”

Equally confusing for me is the popular question “What would Jesus do?”

Jesus dealings with sinners were often different than we might have thought.

In Jude it says about sinners “And on some have compassion, making a distinction….”

This is a topic about which I will not offer an opinion choosing to not judge anyone.

I believe God is love and God loves all people. Where that leaves this discussion is truly “Something to Think About!

I’m Steve Sauder.  

June 24, 2015

Bruce Jenner suffers from dyslexia. That had a lot to do with him enrolling at tiny Graceland College in Lamoni, Iowa in 1968. You see despite Jenner’s athletic prowess his academic issues kept him out all colleges in his native Connecticut. He came to Graceland as part of an effort to recruit east coast kids by the school.

Anyone think Bruce/Caitlyn Jenner could have been a Presby?

          He came to the Iowa school to play football. His scholarship was $250.00!

          Unfortunately Jenner blew out a knee and after a year of rehab thought his career was over, but legendary

track coach L.D. Weldon introduced him to track and more importantly the decathlon. His work ethic was exceptional and he won the multi-event at the KU Relays in 1971. He made the U. S. Olympic team in 1972 finishing 10th in Munich, but came back four years later and became the “World’s Greatest Athlete” winning the decathlon in Montreal.

          Jenner was married for 23 years to Kris (Kardashian) Jenner; the couple and their children appeared in 2007 on the reality TV series “Keeping Up with the Kardashians.” Following their divorce in 2015, Jenner came out as a “trans-woman” and, in June of this year changed her name to Caitlyn.

          As you can imagine this was big news at Graceland College in Lamoni, Iowa where the Bruce Jenner Athletic Complex remains today.

          Interestingly Jenner has not been a big donor at Gaceland despite the fact the school helped him find his athletic identity.

          Several of his former coaches said in a recent story in the Kansas City Star they would fight any attempts to have Jenner’s name removed from the complex. They also said they would oppose an attempt to change the name to Caitlyn Jenner Athletic Complex.

          One of the old coaches said he’s uncertain how he would address Jenner should they meet again. He said “I’m hoping Bruce is Bruce and Caitlyn is Bruce.” He wondered would she say “Hey Duke” and give him a hug or just not know him?

          The Graceland College connection is interesting and suggests Jenner was once a pretty common student. Today she is the ccnter of a lot of attention. Attention she may or may not desire, but if there is another reality show based on Jenner’s life – well, I’ll have my answer!.

          As for the upcoming ESPY’s giving Jenner the Arthur Ashe Award for Courage – I am not one to think this makes sense. Like many others my opinion is there are many people more deserving this award than Caitlyn Jenner.

          There’s something to think about an d I’m Steve Sauder.