• P.J. Griekspoor

    Sometimes, A Good Idea Just Really Works Well

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on October 30, 2010

    There are risks you take when you're Grandma. One of them is that the grandkids will actually like the lessons that you think they need. I decided about a year ago that I would do lessons instead of a bunch of presents at Christmas and birthdays -- piano lessons, horseback riding lessons, etc. This was a decision to both reduce the amount of "stuff" in playrooms and increase the amount of time spent learning something useful. Riding lessons was a gamble at the first of October. I…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    The Bus From Lawrence Was Late, But It Arrived

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on October 25, 2010

    The opening session of today's final (we hope) hearing for public comment on a new air permit that would allow Sunflower Electric Power Coop to move forward with an expansion of its electrical generation capacity at Holcomb sounded more like a hearing in Garden City than in Topeka. Speaker after speaker talked about the need for building more baseload power generation capacity, the jobs that would be created by the project, the state-of-the-art technology that would be used and the economic…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Good News Is It's Raining; Bad News Is Not Where We Need It Most

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on October 22, 2010

    Rain was pretty widespread across Kansas today as a cold front  lumbered across the state then backed up, creating a seasonal but strange-feeling switches between cool, damp and windy and warm, muggy and windy as the day wore on. I complained that I was never dressed right as I left the house to my oldest daughter who promptly reminded me that it's a lot harder to be the mother of four kids that you never know how to dress than it is just to take care of yourself. Ouch! But point taken…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Be Careful What You Wish For May Be Word of the Day

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on October 20, 2010

    You might think R-Calf supporters would have learned something from the not-so-great consequences of their demand for Mandatory Price Reporting, which virtually wiped out any information on daily cattle buying a decade ago. Or maybe from their stubborn insistence that Country of Origin Labeling would boost sales of U.S. produced beef, but which in reality has done nothing but increase the share of the consumer dollar that goes to the packaging industry which has to produce the labels and…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Sorghum Is Getting the Word Out

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on October 20, 2010

    I spent a pleasant hour this afternoon visiting with three representatives of the grain sorghum industry, two from the relatively new sorghum checkoff and one from the National Sorghum Producers Association. Sorghum is a well-known crop in Kansas, the nation's top producer of the versatile grain. It is much less well known in other parts of the country and commands a small share of the acres that could be planted nationwide. Historically, that very lack of numbers has contributed to a…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Sometimes The Elements Just Come Together With Breathtaking Beauty

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on October 11, 2010

    I glanced up during dinner last night when I realized that a shaft of light had replaced the steady drum of rain against the patio doors and caught sight of the golden light that breaks though as a storm departs. The setting sun lasted just long enough to paint a rainbow between the fall colors of the Bradford Pear that shades our deck and the cottonwood on the other side of the backyard. It was one of those moments when the sheer beauty of nature is just overpowering and you have to…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    I Must Be Missing Something; I Just Don't Get the Why Not of Corn Ethanol

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on October 7, 2010

    I don't get it. I sat through a conference of ethanol industry leaders this morning where a lot of the talk was about the challenge of meeting the Renewable Fuel Standard that calls for 36 billion gallons of renewable fuel by 2022, 21 billion of that from feedstock other than corn. That number, in case you missed it, is a requirement to outstrip current corn ethanol production of about 15 billion gallons, which took a decade develop from technology proven for three decades, by 6 billion…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Kansas Bioscience Begins Series of Workforce Hot Team Meetings

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on October 5, 2010

    Industry and education leaders learned today that Kansas's bioscience industry is bigger, more diverse and  more promising as a future economic engine than many of them realized. The Wichita group is the first of eight that will meet around the state over the coming weeks to talk about how to best prepare the labor force in all parts of the state for the jobs that will emerge as the industry grows. Wichita representatives heard from two speakers from widely divergent sectors of the…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Have I Lost My Mind? I Enrolled Three Kids in Horseback Riding Lessons

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on October 4, 2010

    I have two granddaughters that have wanted riding lessons forever. Well, at least ever since they learned to talk, they've been saying "Ride the Horsey." So last weekend, I decided it was about time, and I took the 5-year-old out to meet the folks at a local riding stable, C Arrow Stables, that is known for emphasizing teaching the WHOLE experience of having a horse, complete with scooping, raking and grooming as well as actual saddle time. She was enthralled and the stable was offering a…

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