Last month's column focused on South Carolina's abysmal, fourth-highest in the nation unemployment rate. I have come across some information in the last couple of weeks that has given me a lot to think about as I look for ways the state can encourage job creation in South Carolina.
Suddenly, Campaign 2012 is looking like deja vu all over again. Remember how President Barack Obama's fast rise to the White House was boosted here and there by remarkably unlucky opponents? The Republican challengers to his reelection seem almost determined to help him to get lucky one more time.
Do AMC's "Mad Men," ABC's "Pan Am," NBC's "The Playboy Club" and BBC America's "The Hour" exploit society's barely suppressed appetite for a more sexist, racist and conservative era? Fear not. The underlying message in these depictions of the bad old days is clear: We should be better than that now, even when we aren't.
Forty-two years ago, Wife Nancy -- she was Girlfriend Nancy back then -- gave me an etching of a little boy standing on a rocky shoreline in Maine.
During the past few years it has become increasingly obvious that baseball is no longer America's past-time. The NFL has taken over that mantle as pro football now garners more money and more eyeballs than any other sport.
WASHINGTON -- I stayed up late last Wednesday night in hopes that the U.S. Supreme Court would call off the execution of Troy Davis. Instead, at 11:08 p.m., he was pronounced dead.
The last time I remember reading about something called "K2," it was probably in a National Geographic article referring to the second-highest mountain on Earth after Mt. Everest. In fact, they are part of the same mountain system, although more than 800 miles apart.
Class warfare seems to be popping up everywhere these days. It must be campaign season.
I am very grateful to the Chronicle-Independent for giving me an opportunity each month to discuss education in our community and beyond. One of the topics I feel compelled to keep talking about is how our state funds K-12 education. As I've said on several other occasions in this space, it's an understatement to say that the way our state funds K-12 education is dysfunctional, complicated, disorganized, ineffective and contradictory, and that's on a good day. When I think about this system, imagery involving duct tape and baling wire comes to mind.
The city of Camden was in the spotlight Thursday when local elected leaders from around the region met at TenEleven Galleria. These regional leaders, along with Camden city officials, met to discuss important legislative issues at a Municipal Association of South Carolina's Regional Advocacy Meeting. The Municipal Association is a statewide organization that provides support to the state's cities and towns with their efforts to be hubs for job growth and economic development.
Let's be fair to Rep. Ron Paul of Texas. Contrary to a widespread impression, the libertarian-minded Texas Republican did not say during a recent Republican debate that people without health insurance should be left to die. It is only his idea of "freedom" that might cause you to think so.
Call me a hypocrite, and you'll be pretty darned accurate if you're talking about big-time college athletics.
Troy Davis died Wednesday night.
NEW YORK -- Are Republicans stupid?
In presidential politics, endorsements are a prize candidates seem to covet, but don't necessarily need. On the rare occasion, however, a presidential backer can give a candidate that extra boost required to finish off the competition or a killer blow that eventually stymies a campaign.
WASHINGTON -- If politicians preying upon your attentions this season fail to inspire, you might seek common cause with the beasts -- the four-legged variety rather than those running for office.
The wild world of sports seems these days to be filled with thugs and hooligans. I really don't mean to paint such a large group of people with such a wide brush, so I'll say there are plenty of athletes, the majority in fact, who are honest, decent citizens who abide by the accepted rules of humanity in all or most of what they do. But, like in most groups, it's the bad apples who get the most attention.
It's said that Bear Bryant, the legendary football coach at Alabama, once remarked, "Every man thinks he knows how to do two things perfectly: grill a steak and coach a football team."
Trees are fascinating biological wonders. From ancient bristle cone pines and towering redwoods out west to our widely diverse Southern forests, the life cycle of a tree provides us with year-round interest. One of the most intriguing and beautiful results of a tree's life cycle is autumn color.
WASHINGTON -- So unpopular is President Obama these days that the (D) following Democratic candidates' names might stand for Denial.
Growing up, I had a hand full of career goals. My parents signed me up for basketball in 3rd grade, which put the idea of playing for the WNBA in my head.
Ah, Prince, how we've missed you. Prince Rogers Nelson has finally "Kiss"-ed and made up with Warner Bros. Records, regaining control of his original catalog of music and put out not one, but two albums worth of new music on the same day.
It's a funny thing. That's what Mama used to say when something baffled her. Like Mama, I prefer that things make common sense. Otherwise, I'll ponder, figure, study, and try to decipher that funny thing until it's somewhat sensible.
In early September, I attended a meeting of superintendents in Greenville. A major area of discussion was the development of a workforce that would attract sustainable industry to South Carolina and how K-12 education fits into this puzzle. To underscore this discussion, the meeting included a tour of the BMW plant in Spartanburg. Wow! This facility absolutely reflects what a 21st century workplace looks like and what many of our students will need to be prepared to enter. I talk a lot about preparing students for their future and not our past. The BMW tour reminded me why this is ...
On Nov. 4, Kershaw County citizens will have the opportunity to vote on the Kershaw County School District facilities referendum. Because of legislation passed by the South Carolina General Assembly in 2014, voters will be able to decide whether or not a penny sales tax that would be collected for 15 years could be imposed in the county and used by the school district to fund the projects in the referendum.
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