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Something to Think About

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.

August 24, 2016

                                                8-24-16

          Most of this is from Time magazine's August 29th story entitled: TYRANNY OF THE MOB.” It starts: “Trolls are turning the web into a cesspool of aggression and violence.”

          Explaining “the Internet’s personality has changed. Once it was a geek with lofty ideals about the free flow of information. Now…it is a sociopath with Asperger’s. “

          If you needed help increasing your upload speeds it was readily available. Unfortunately now, if you mention you are depressed on the web you will likely receive instructions on how to kill yourself.

          Factors like anonymity, invisibility, lack of authority and not communicating in real time “strip away mores society spent millennia building.”

          Let me define a couple of new terms for you.

          To “Troll” is known to most as a fishing style. But online “It quickly morphed to refer to the monsters who hide in darkness and threaten people.”

          Internet trolls claim the do this for “lulz” or translated laughs. These include everything from clever pranks to harassment to violent threats.

          They claim if you don’t laugh you lack a sense of humor.

          Also there is “doxxing.” That’s publishing social security numbers and bank account information.

          Every heard of “swatting?” It is self explanatory – it’s calling in an emergency to someone’s home in hopes of having a swat team bust in!

          Some of the other tricks “trolls” have played include: posting on memorial pages mocking the death of someone they may not even know.

In 2012 Anita Sarkeesian tried to raise funds for a series about the hatred of women. She received bomb threats, doxxing threats, rape threats and an unwanted starring role in a video game.

A New York Times writer with 35,000 Twitter followers quit social media after a barrage of anti-Semitic messages.

And a female writer recently stopped using social media after receiving rape threats against her 5 year old daughter.

Folks these are just the tip of the iceberg. The Time story written by Joel Stein is amazing.

Our kids from 6,7,8 years of age have phones and access to the Internet. Parents need to take heed and make sure their children aren’t off on the wrong foot. If you hear them say “trolling” and they aren’t going to the lake it’s time to get involved.

Asking if they have “Prince Albert in a can” was a prank – sending in the swat team isn’t!

          I’m Steve Sauder

         

August 17, 2016

The sad situation surrounding this campaign for president we are having got me to thinking last week about the comedian Will Rogers. I wonder what Will would have said?

          I found some things written about Mr. Rogers in the Forward to a book about him that might be helpful today.

          Finally, there was no malice in his humor. He never criticized a man who was down. He was neither a Republican nor a Democrat. He said he was always with the “outs” and against the “ins.” At the start of the great depression Will Rogers ceased all criticism of Presidents.

          He had a sharp wit, but he used it kindly. In his daily newspaper column read in over 400 papers he took cracks at capital and labor, bankers and farmers, but through it all was a thread of forgiveness and national unity. The insulting personal humor of today was quite foreign to Will Rogers.

          Will Rogers lived in a time now long past, when more people lived in the country than the city. I think his point of view is best summed up in a remark he once made to an audience in New York City. “They call me a rube and a hick, but I’d a lot rather be the man who bought the Brooklyn Bridge than the man that sold it.”

          That was Will Rogers.

          So today, if we could ask him how do think Mr. Trump would answer the question about selling or buying the Brooklyn Bridge?

          Lord, today just a simple prayer. Please send us a modern day Will Rogers cause we need something to laugh about!

          I’m Steve Sauder.

          

August 10, 2016

It took awhile but Kansans proved last week we aren’t so dumb. But, on the same set of facts we can’t say the same thing for our governor.

          In primary elections all across Kansas Republicans sent conservative lawmakers who were the support system for Sam Brownback packing. The results were even better than moderate Republicans had hoped.

This is good news for our state which has been burdened by leadership that has been absolutely tone deaf despite massive indications that the people were not supportive of their tax policies, revenue shortfalls and continual budget cuts. Brownback’s approval rating was recently listed at a lousy 26%!

          But, Governor Sam evidently, still doesn’t feel the burn. In an interview on public television in Kansas City, Monday he blamed the media and poor communication for the losses taken by his supporters and refused to call the election results a repudiation of his leadership.

          The truth is all across the state conservative incumbents were tossed aside like rag dolls and my understanding is there are democrats running in all 40 Senate races state-wide and a number of them have excellent chances.

          It looks to me like the contests in November for seats in the Kansas House and Senate may well be based more on: Do you support Brownback’s policies rather than are you a Republican or Democrat?

          The term “repudiate” was used earlier - it means to “refuse to accept as valid.”  For me that is the question to ask all state candidates – do you repudiate the leadership and policies of Governor Brownback?

          If they can’t pass that test us “smart Kansans” will toss them out!

          By the way – “repudiate” sits right next to Republican Party in my dictionary.

          Truly “something to think about” today!

          I’m Steve Sauder

August 3, 2016

                                                8-3-16

          This may seem like a strange message, but I’m sharing it to ease confusion about my health.

On July the 4th while watching Wimbledon tennis I noticed something was amiss with my left eye. Covering my right eye I discovered I couldn’t see anything?

           I experienced a hemorrhage in my right eye almost 2 years ago caused by a tear in the vitreous that left me with “floaters” in the eye that blocked about 60% of my vision. I assumed this was just a reoccurrence, but in the other eye. Since that eye cleared up after several procedures and is 100% normal today I was not particularly alarmed.

There was no pain so we waited until the 5th of July to call Dr. Reynold’s office. They told me they needed to see me immediately. We found out there was an occlusion in a vein and artery that had shut off the blood and oxygen supply to my retina thus killing about 45% of it. Unfortunately the damage was right in the middle of the retina thus blocking my sight.

          My doctors tell me there is no chance for a reversal and that retina transplants are science fiction since the retina is a part of the brain.

          I’m learning to function with one eye. Depth perception is the most difficult thing to relearn. I’ve restricted where and when I drive and I’m going slower and paying a lot more attention.

          I’m sharing this so people will know about my situation and hopefully understand if I don’t speak because I didn’t see them or recognize them or if I accidently bump into them – hopefully not with my car.

          You might make the case that I’ve fallen in love with Medicare because since turning 65 I’ve had my share of events. Check out this list: Ankle surgery, an AV Ablation for A-Fib, the hemorrhage in my right eye, cellulites after  falling off the bridge at the Country Club lake while fishing, back surgery, a broken foot, lost vision in my left eye and finally I was fitted with a prosthetic brace for my right foot and ankle that I now wear every day.

          Actually, maybe I do love Medicare!

          I’m Steve Sauder

July 27, 2016

          Next Tuesday Kansas holds its Primary Election. Locally we have three races with multiple candidates asking for your support. If you are not registered to vote you won't need to listen to the rest of my thoughts. If you are registered you can vote now or wait and go to the polls next Tuesday.

          KVOE does not endorse candidates, but at times I share with listeners who I am supporting and why.

          The race to replace Peggy Mast in the 76th House District has two Democrats running: Teresa Briggs and Kelly Atherton. I supported Teresa Briggs two years ago when she opposed Representative Mast and I still believe she will be an excellent representative.

          Don Hill’s retirement was hastened by the knowledge that Mark Schreiber was willing to replace him. I'm not sure how a candidate could have a better endorsement? 

          Mark's Republican opponents - Steve Pearson and Dr. Matthew Shepherd - are both good people and under different circumstances excellent choices, but given the mess we have in Kansas we need Schreiber’s experience.

          Schreiber's job representing the interests of Westar in Topeka gives him a giant leg up. He not only already knows the issues and the people in the statehouse he understand how things get done in the legislature. We are lucky Mark is available!

          The third contested race is to represent the big First District of Kansas in the U.S. House of Representatives.

          Tim Huelskamp won a large primary six years ago and has been re-elected twice. He has kept his campaign promises by voting against everything, not supporting any new taxes, being a staunch supporter of the 2nd Amendment and has been Pro Life as is possible.

          Unfortunately Representative Huelskamp's history of not getting along with leadership raised its ugly head again in Washington. The First District is highly reliant on agriculture. It was perfect when Rep. Huelskamp landed a seat on the powerful Agriculture Committee. BUT, when he got cross ways with House leadership he unbelievably got kicked off this very important committee. He remains off the Agriculture committee!

          Not being on the Ag Committee makes Huelskamp expendable in this district according to Kansas Farm Bureau and the Kansas Livestock Association both of whom have endorsed his opponent.

          Roger Marshall from Great Bend is a respected doctor and a good choice to replace Huelskamp. Marshall is every bit as conservative as Huelskamp, but has the common sense to know when to speak and when to listen. Dr. Marshall who also has a solid farming background will be appointed to the Agriculture Committee a privilege Huelskamp squandered.

          We have an opportunity to be represented by someone who will not only get along with the leaders in Washington; he may well become a leader - something Representative Tim Huelskamp will never accomplish - never!

          Dr. Roger Marshall is an easy choice here.

          Here’s hoping you have a vote and that you will use it.

          I’m Steve Sauder

July 20, 2016

                                                7-20-16

          It is safe to say virtually everyone loves a circus. A circus has something for everyone; acrobats, clowns, barkers, wild animals, trained animals and loud music. And any good circus has unexpected excitement.

          Guess that’s why both political parties are calling the event going on in Cleveland a circus.

          Republicans call it a circus because these events use a big tent and that’s what a political party is supposed to do – get everyone under one big tent.

          The Democrats are calling the Republican Convention a circus for a completely different reason and guess what? The GOP isn’t disappointing anyone looking for a show.

          Monday was a dozy. Conflict and controversy supposedly over the “rules” got things going. Then after that spat was settled the Grand Old Party trotted out veterans, a mother, a mayor, a wife, a general and a senator. It was easily as good as any real circus I’ve ever attended.

          Following the show on Monday charges of plagiarism were leveled at Mrs. Trump. She delivered her speech flawlessly, but soon as they say “the rest of the story” came out. Often you do see sleight of hand at the circus!

          Last night did not hold the potential for excitement that Monday had with too many politicians slated to talk. There may have been excitement during the vote to make Donald Trump officially the nominee.

          Speaking of the Donald all this activity leading up to Thursday night will all have been for naught if he doesn’t deliver the speech of his life.

          Trump has had many chances to pivot from the loud and boisterous candidate to a more refined presidential nominee and potential president. So far he has not taken those opportunities.

In his acceptance speech Trump has the opportunity to offer unique ideas, detailed plans and more substance for his administration. For example: he cannot simply say “I’m going to fix things for our veterans” – he needs to share a plan.

Trump can’t win the election with his speech Thursday night, but he could make it nearly impossible to win.  

For Trump it is a golden opportunity because he will be the center of attention in the Big Top!

I’m Steve Sauder