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Columns

  • Column: DOT Commission: Go. Just go.

    As of July 1, Gov. Henry McMaster has the power to fire any or all of the Department of Transportation’s commissioners. It was a DOT-reform element in the gas-tax bill that was passed this year.
    The commission has been responsible all along for the condition of the roads. Ultimately, it decides what to fix and when, how to do it, and how to spend money allocated by the General Assembly.
    While the gas-tax bill didn’t fix everything, it did give us clearer lines of accountability – if we will use them.

  • Column: GOP finally can repeal Obamacare, but it balks

    The news these days is like a rehash of the Obamacare debates, with the two parties simply changing jerseys.
    After the passage of Obamacare, we discovered that it had a dozen new taxes and was not affordable. It was a redistribution of wealth disguised as an act of compassion. It gave us lies on top of lies, and even as it collapses there are many who say it is working.

  • Column: Resistance to Trump, as long as it’s peaceful, seems justified to me

    This is in response to Friday’s column by Charles Bundy. Yes, the president was rightly chosen by the Electoral College, but Trump lost the popular vote by 3 million votes. People have a right to protest and resist peacefully.
    The Democrats did oppose the nomination of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court. Mr. Bundy fails to mention that the Republicans refused to even meet with Merrick Garland, Obama’s choice to fill the vacated position on the court. President Obama had every right to make that appointment, and the Republican Senate resisted.

  • Column: Studying the world’s best schools

    Did you ever wonder what a truly great school looks like?
    In doing research with the U.S. News and World Report rankings of high schools, I learned that the top three high schools, and five of the top seven in the country, were run by BASIS – a chain of 27 tuition free, charter, private and international schools in five states, Washington, D.C., and China.

  • Column: Busy session addressed festering problems

    Here’s my final legislative summary for you regarding the just-finished General Assembly session.

    Roads funding and restructuring
    After years of inaction, the General Assembly passed a roads bill that reforms both the DOT and the State Infrastructure Bank, as well as provides a major increase in funding for long-overdue maintenance needs. The governor now has the authority – and responsibility – to appoint, oversee and, when necessary, fire the nine SCDOT Commissioners.

  • Column: County GOP looks ahead to ’18 cycle of elections

    With 2018 coming quickly, Lancaster County Republicans are gearing up for another successful year, following a number of historic wins in 2016 – including seating our first Republican auditor and coroner, and seeing Sheriff Barry Faile win by the largest-ever general election margin in a local sheriff’s race.

  • Column: Negativism, resistance to president must end so we can solve problems

    The recent shootings of unarmed members of Congress on a baseball practice field in Virginia is just the latest, but most serious, of a series of reactions to the election of our president.
    The shooter was dispatched by two brave security officers on the scene and will be no cost to the taxpayers while he awaits trial.
    This behavior must cease, and we need to face up to the atmosphere that feeds this kind of cowardly action by misfits in our society.

  • Column: We just can’t seem to avoid S.C. cronyism

    The state’s Judicial Merit Selection Committee screens and nominates judicial candidates. Its members are picked by the House speaker and the Senate president pro tem. State law requires that four of the 10 members be “selected from the general public,” while the other six must be sitting legislators.
    That takes us to former Sen. Wes Hayes of Rock Hill. It’s not our intent to denigrate him in any way – for all we know, he may be an ideal JMSC member. But there are two things wrong with his recent appointment.

  • Column: Rejecting simple, easy, wrong answers

    “For every complex problem, there is an answer that is clear, simple and wrong.”  – H.L. Mencken
    The S.C. legislature seems to live by this. We have some very big and complex problems in this state, and our lawmakers are masters at coming up with clear, simple, wrong answers. Three stories in the news last week are a perfect illustration of this.
    Many would argue that the two most basic core functions of our state government are to educate our children and to keep us safe. Figuring out how to pay for these things is the challenge.

  • Column: Trump right to abandon Paris accord

    I am frustrated after reading Phil Noble’s June 11 column, which criticized President Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris “climate” accord.
    Based on what he wrote, I suspect that Mr. Noble has not read and does not understand the agreement.
    It is not a climate treaty or an environmental treaty. It is an economic treaty. And it would be a disaster for America. The agreement helps the economies of all other nations at the expense of the U.S. economy.  
    Consider the following: