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Columns

  • Discussion begins on immigration

    By the time you read this, a group of United States senators will likely have introduced the first significant proposal on immigration reform in more than 20 years.
    While it is far too early to comment on its content – the group has been fairly secretive as to details – the simple fact that such a high profile group will be offering a proposal is noteworthy. And it offers a good opportunity to talk, generally about immigration.

  • ‘CG’ helps to protect your wallet

    If you’re the person who keeps up with bills and balances your family checkbook, you can definitely relate to the role of a comptroller general.
    That’s my title, state comptroller general. Many folks in state government simply refer to me as “the CG.”
    That’s a peculiar title, even a little old fashioned. So it’s not surprising when I meet people outside state government who ask about the responsibilities of my job and the agency I direct, the Office of Comptroller General.

  • The run ends but the road never does

    How can you get what you want from life if you do not know what it is that you want? Over the past years, I have observed a problem within our society and it seems to be that a great many people feel lost, confused and without a sense of purpose.
    They have no direction in their lives and seem to be floating about aimlessly. Going from relationship to relationship, job to job, day to day, seeking happiness in material possessions, and always wanting more but doing less to achieve.

  • Obamacare to have a major impact on businesses, families

    Many Lancaster Republicans have contacted me to express their displeasure at the recent column by Phil Noble, which attacked Republican legislators for their opposition to Obamacare.
     Noble has a long history as a paid political operative and past Democratic candidate for several offices, so one would suppose he has a bias.
    While that is understandable, trying to suggest that those opposed to Obamacare are on the same level as racists and those who provoked a bloody civil war, is inexcusable and just plain wrong.

  • Forgiveness offers political rebirth for former governor

    The power of Christian forgiveness – it’s a redeeming force in South Carolina politics.
    Former Gov. Mark Sanford, who was caught in an Argentinean tryst in June 2009, is now the GOP nominee to fill the 1st Congressional District’s seat. Voters made that decision in a GOP runoff election on April 2.
    Sanford will face Elizabeth Colbert Busch, winner of the Democratic primary, in the May 7 general election.

  • Upgrades under way on website

    Transparency has become just another buzzword to some in government these days.
    A few years ago, before it ever became a government buzzword, I launched a project to make the details of how government spends money readily available and transparent to citizens in South Carolina.
    As the state’s comptroller general – more commonly described as its chief financial officer – it seemed only natural to me that South Carolinians ought to be able to see the full picture of how government officials are spending the public’s hard-earned tax dollars.

  • Writer concerned about smart meter installation

    I live in a large development in Indian Land, and have York Electric Cooperative as my distribution provider.
    On Saturday, March 9, York Electric made a number of computer-generated calls to multiple customers here to inform us that they would be coming around this neighborhood soon to install “smart” meters. As it turned out after making a call to their office, “soon” meant Wednesday or Thursday of the upcoming week. 

  • Why you can’t read half the state budget

    The South Carolina state budget is split into two major pieces, part 1A and part 1B. While both parts are excruciatingly boring to read, the first part, 1A, is at least understandable. At least it looks like a budget.
    Each agency has its own chart of line items showing how much money is allocated to each agency, program, function, etc. That’s why, when members of the news media talk about “the budget,” they’re almost always talking about that portion of the budget they can read, part 1A.

  • Pass Constitutional Carry Act

    Citizens of South Carolina got a rare treat March 4. State Sens. Lee Bright, Shane Martin, Greg Hembree and Brad Hutto conducted a public hearing on Senate Bill S115 for the proposed Constitutional Carry Act.

  • Nullification – are these guys nuts?

    You can’t make this stuff up. And if you did, no one would believe it. But it’s true – South Carolina legislators are once again talking about nullification.
    It’s no wonder, I guess, given how well that worked out for us last time.
    When this nullification stuff first happened in 1850s and 1860s, Charleston Unionist James L. Petigru uttered his famous description of the Palmetto state: “Poor South Carolina, too small for a republic, too large for an insane asylum.”