I want to say Thank You to Aj, specifically:

------ quote copied & pasted from groups.google.com.au -
groups beta sucks! -----------------
Peter Christy wrote:

> I've got a small problem with recent versions of KDE / Slack-current. It's
> more noticeable on the lower powered machines, and seems to be caused by
> artsd hogging 98% of the CPU for prolonged periods - but only when logged
> in as root! (Or if you su root in a console window).

disable artsd in kde start up by going to "Sound & Multimedia" ; "Sound
System" and unchecking "start artsd" box. It takes so much CPU cycles on
even fast processors.

I've done that, and it seems to be working. I put "kde artsd" for the
search and it was practically the first hit!