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The path is difficult and long

Jim, I’ve found sometimes conversations like those you had with your relatives are hurtful, particularly when I want to like them or for them to like me. I see the contradictions, usually moral inconsistencies I recognize because I or some part of me indulged in that kind of contradiction before.…

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When it counts, UMKC ignores locals

UMKC appeals to and depends on funds from the local community. But now, as we expand our library, UMKC won’t reinvest in local citizens to do the work. The university has hired a company that employs out-of-state ironworkers while local union and nonunion ironworkers go wanting for work. I’ve been…

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My house

My house is an example of everything that’s wrong with real estate and residential construction. It cost about 150 large to build. Of that cost, at least 20 percent was site preparation. Then, there’s not one ounce of recycled material in this house. All new-sawn lumber, fresh drywall, newly mined…

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A house for every head? Preposterous!

A recycled steel box (opened up so it doesn’t feel like a box), tiny bit of land, and, voila, a house for the houseless. Simple. Good. With the needs of individuals in mind, the container house has promise as the great confluence of mass production and individual personality. Shipping containers…


Kicking the kid out of the house

My 18-year-old daughter reminds me of how hard it was to be 18. Loneliness. Listlessness. Depression. For days, I would sit by the phone wondering what the hell? The phone never rang. Days seemed endless. Between her and the students in my history classes at Johnson County Community College, I’m…

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