Mar 10, 2009    #026
Contact: Laura Byerley

Award-winning author Thomas Frank visits UMKCWall Street Journal columnist will speak about financial meltdown

Thomas Frank, author of best-seller “What’s the Matter with Kansas?” and a weekly columnist at The Wall Street Journal, will speak at the University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC) from 2 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, March 14. The UMKC Department of Economics, Student Government Association and College of Arts and Sciences Student Council are hosting Frank’s appearance, and the free lecture will take place at the UMKC School of Law Courtroom, 500 E. 52nd St., Kansas City, Mo. The lecture will be followed by a book signing, and Frank’s books will be on sale at Rainy Day Books.

Frank will speak about the financial meltdown and his most recent book “The Wrecking Crew: How Conservatives Rule,” which examines how Conservative politicians have affected Washington, D.C. Casting back to the early days of the Conservative revolution, Frank describes the rise of a ruling coalition dedicated to dismantling government. But rather than cutting down the big government they claim to hate, Frank writes that Conservatives have simply sold off the big government and turned public policy into a private-sector bidding war.

“Frank’s ‘What’s the Matter with Kansas?’ book was such a huge success and hit close to home,” said Stephanie Kelton, assistant professor of economics at UMKC. “‘The Wrecking Crew: How Conservatives Rule’ is so relevant for where we are today, and Frank is a really engaging speaker.”

Bill Black, an associate professor of economics and law at UMKC and former litigation director of the Federal Home Loan Bank Board knows Frank and has been quoted in some of Frank’s Wall Street Journal columns.

“I recommended Frank as a speaker because he is very well-known, writes about our region, is capable of attracting a significant audience, is interested in public policy (including economics) and is viewed as a serious observer and analyst,” Black said.

In addition to serving as a Wall Street Journal columnist, Frank is a contributing editor at Harper’s Magazine. He has received a Lannan award and has served as a guest columnist for The New York Times, as well.

The University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC), one of four University of Missouri campuses, is a public university serving more than 14,000 undergraduate, graduate and professional students. UMKC engages with the community and economy based on a four-part mission: life and health sciences; visual and performing arts; urban issues and education; and a vibrant learning and campus life experience.

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This information is available to people with speech or hearing impairments by calling Relay Missouri at (800) 735-2966 (TT) or (800) 735-2466 (voice).


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