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Columns

  • Column: Income distribution shows clout of the rich in setting U.S. policy

    In the Nov. 24 Lancaster News, Rudy Schmidt responded to my Nov. 15 column about how Democratic policies help the middle class.
    I appreciate the cordial nature of Mr. Schmidt’s comments. In his article he asked me to give the basis for my statements. I will try succinctly to do just that.
    The Gini Coefficient, a measure of income distribution, has been increasing in the United States since 1980. (That means the middle class has been shrinking and the few very rich have been getting richer. Also, real wages have been decreasing.)

  • Column: Guns essential for protection against crime, totalitarianism

    Ninety-eight percent of mass shootings in America since the 1950s, according to the Crime Prevention Research Center, have occurred in gun-free zones. That is why people die, because it’s the place of choice for the mentally ill perps. No one to shoot back.

  • Column: Sheriff’s Indian Land estimates raise parity issue across county

    Friday’s Lancaster News article on law-enforcement costs for an incorporated Indian Land highlights a significant discrepancy in charges for similar services throughout the county.
    Until this year, the sheriff’s office provided law enforcement services for the incorporated area of Heath Springs. When the cost for those services increased from $23,500 to $38,500 earlier this year, Heath Springs chose not to renew the contract.  Presumably, they still receive some level of coverage from the sheriff because they are still part of Lancaster County.

  • Column: Churches, protect yourselves by letting CWP holders carry

    In the last two years, there have been three incidents at churches in Charleston, Antioch, Tenn., and Sutherland Springs, Texas, where a man with a gun entered the church and began shooting.
    Thirty-six people were killed and many more wounded. In each of these shootings, the helpless victims were trapped and unable to defend themselves.

  • Column: Prosecute bureaucrats who fail to put criminals on no-buy list

    In his Sunday column, the editor expressed legitimate concerns about the deaths that have occurred in several recent mass shootings.
    He mentioned the failure of the Air Force to forward information to the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System, or NICS, that would have precluded Devin Patrick Kelley from acquiring the firearms that he used in the shooting at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, Texas.

  • Column: Don’t let 1 high-return year obscure need for pension fix

    The Public Employee Benefit Authority – the agency responsible for administering the state’s retirement plans – recently released its annual report assessing the South Carolina Retirement System (SCRS).
    In a huge upswing from previous years, the state’s pension investments performed very well during fiscal 2016-17, returning a rate of 11.88 percent on investment.

  • Column: Democratic policies hurt the country’s middle class

    Bobby Collins’ column in the Nov. 15 paper said some things that I need to respond to.
    But first, Mr. Collins, thank you for riding on the Democrat truck in the Lancaster Veterans Day parade in support of veterans. I was out of town and could not be with my veteran friends.

  • Commentary: Mulvaney: Bill uses corporate tax cut to boost whole economy

    Editor’s note: Mick Mulvaney discussed the Senate’s tax-reform bill on CBS’ “Face the Nation” Sunday. Here are excerpts of his conversation with host John Dickerson, starting with an amendment to the bill last week that would scrap the Affordable Care Act’s mandate that individuals buy health insurance or pay a penalty.

  • Column: Recent FOIA cases show need to keep holding feet to the fire

    There have been a lot of developments the past several weeks in South Carolina regarding application of the state’s Freedom of Information Act.
    ◆ The state Supreme Court heard arguments last month on the issue of whether the Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce is subject to the law because it receives allocations of hotel occupancy tax revenue for the chamber’s role in marketing the area.

  • Column: This isn’t the tax reform we want or need

    Editor’s note: The writer is a Democrat from Sumter who lost to Republican Ralph Norman in this year’s special election for the 5th District congressional seat. Parnell is running for the office again in 2018. Norman’s views on the GOP tax-reform bill ran in this space Sunday.

    My father used to tell me to believe half of what you see and even less of what you hear. When it comes to what people in Washington or in the media have to say about tax policy, that’s usually pretty good advice.