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Columns

  • Column: The holes in state’s shield law

    A judge is considering whether to hold S.C. political blogger Will Folks in contempt and possibly jail him for refusing to reveal a confidential source.
    The case points out an intentional gap that South Carolina left in its reporters’ shield law. In most other states, Folks would not be facing possible jail time.

  • Column: Court: Newberry County must pay $13K for open-meetings violation

    Anyone who has attended a meeting of a public body where the body has gone into executive session has probably been left in the dark about what was being discussed in the executive session.

  • Column: Bad stuff can happen if state twists policies to attract jobs

    As the S.C. Policy Council has been compiling this year’s “Best and Worst of the General Assembly,” I couldn’t help noticing a recurring theme: economic development-related bills.
    Some are overt, like one that would create two new grant programs and a grant fund to further integrate economic development into the state’s school system.
    Others are not, such as the bill that offers a tax credit for purchasing S.C. produce. The credit is capped, which means not everyone who applies will get it.

  • Column: Graham: Take Obamacare funding and give it to states as block grants

    After Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced Monday night that he lacked the votes to proceed on the latest plan to replace Obamacare, Sen. Lindsey Graham urged him to consider an alternative that Graham released last week with Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.). Here’s a statement Graham released about the Graham-Cassidy plan:

    It’s time for a new approach to repealing and replacing Obamacare. I have worked with Sen. Bill Cassidy, a medical doctor, on this latest proposal.

  • Column: The cutting edge of today’s education? Computer code

    All the way from the boardrooms of tech executives in Silicon Valley to the kindergarten class at Voyager Charter School in Charleston, the coding movement is sweeping the country.
    So, who is behind the coding movement?

  • Column: Should S.C. consider not repaving all rural roads?

    South Carolina, like every other state, is in the business of building roads. It’s a big business: Four of the top 10 vendors for the state last year were roads contractors, accounting for $175 million in spending alone.
    And that doesn’t reckon the opportunity cost – all of the things that don’t get funded because roads do. I may say conservation, you may say law enforcement, but either way, there’s a magnified cost.

  • Column: Graham: Vet’s killing demands policy shift on Palestinian aid

    Editor’s note:  Sen. Graham spoke Wednesday before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. It is considering the Taylor Force Act, a bill he introduced that would cut off U.S. aid to the Palestinian Authority if it does not end its practice of paying monetary rewards to the families of terrorists who kill Americans and Israeli citizens. Taylor Force’s father, Stuart, of Kiawah Island, was at the hearing. Here are excerpts of Graham’s remarks.

  • Column: Democracy works only when we engage our brains and vote

    The Declaration of Independence wasn’t about revolution.
    Here’s what it says: “We hold these truths to be self-evident… that to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men… that whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government….”
    We generally think of this in terms of an uprising, and certainly it entailed that for the founding fathers — but for them, it was about preserving their rights.

  • Column: Yes, Mr. Carnes, all of us should be cooperative, open-minded

    I would like to call attention to Brian Carnes’ guest column in Sunday’s paper entitled “Carnes objects to council snubs of Holt, Wilson.”
    I agree with his statement: “We can only accomplish greatness by working together and by being open to the ideas of others.” This is a reasonable and rational position.

  • Column: DOT embarks on 10-year plan to rebuild roads

    SCDOT has mapped out a decade-long plan designed to rebuild decayed roads and replace structurally deficient bridges all across the state.
    The foundation of this mission began last Saturday, July 1, when the roads bill passed by the General Assembly became law.
    The state’s gasoline tax, currently one of the lowest in the nation, is increasing for the first time since 1987. The initial increase is 2 cents a gallon, and the tax will increase by another 2 cents each year for a total of 12 cents at the end of a six-year period.