I've always admired people who take chances, who step out into the world and do something that seems scary and bold. I'm not always that way, so when I see someone take a step out of their comfort zone and into something new, I'm quite impressed.
WASHINGTON -- 'Tis the season and Nancy Pelosi has given the hands-down best gift to the American people -- her phrase "Embrace the suck."
As we approach the end of 2013, I thought about those who have left us -- those whose deaths are notable either because of who they were or the circumstances of their passing. While everyone notes the passing of luminaries, what about the people we've lost this year in Kershaw County? My list is not long, although there were certainly a lot of obituaries to go through; some even made the front page.
(This is a three-part series on Charlie. This is the first installment.)
Verbal communication can be very surprising. Sometimes it can be annoying. It can also be so amazing that the listener hardly has a reply except a gasp.
A few months ago, I was talking with a mother of a private school student, and I asked her if she minded telling me why she chose a private school for her child. I've asked this question to numerous private school parents over the years, and I always learn something. But the answer I got in this case was one that I hadn't heard before. This mother said, "I don't want my child to be a test score." She went on to tell me that in her opinion, standardized testing in public schools had become more important ...
Like tens of thousands of other South Carolinians, I went to the State Fair in Columbia a few weeks ago. It was great fun, and all the usual attractions were there. But there was something new this year -- and it was hot.
I walked into my room the other day and some horror movie music should have started playing, because it was a nightmare in the 29223 zip code. After standing in the doorway looking at all of my stuff, I made it my mission to get rid of everything I don't need, properly store what I'm not using and better organize everything that I use on a daily basis. I don't know too much about feng shui, but I'm pretty sure the concept is accurate. I couldn't remember the last time I'd opened my blinds ...
It's that time of year again, when "The Christmas Letter" arrives from friends.
WASHINGTON -- Make a woman laugh, Marilyn Monroe supposedly said, and you can make her do anything.
WASHINGTON -- We have reached a new level of political absurdity when the right is mad at the pope and the left wants to anoint his head with oil.
I went with my friend, Jody, and her daughters recently to see the Christmas lights at Swan Lake in Sumter. It was so fun to spend an evening with the excitement of children at Christmas. I have a real love for driving around with the heat blasting in my face, Mariah Carey Christmas turned up and singing, as loudly as I can, "All I want for Christmas is YOU!"
The welfare state is now omnipresent in every part of the United States. The federal budget is dominated by entitlement spending, with 45 percent of federal spending in 2012 going to Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare (among other health care entitlements). Simultaneously, states are struggling under the fiscal burdens imposed on them by mandatory entitlement programs: for example, spending by the South Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (primarily on Medicaid) has averaged $1.21 billion over the last three budget years.
What if I told you that it's the 11th hour, and that the proof is Warsaw, Kiribati and South Carolina?
I'm the parent of a Camden Middle School (CMS) student. Each weekday morning, I drop him off after taking his brother to another school.
As I noted in my column last month, the ultimate objective for KershawHealth is providing quality care for all the people in this community, and one of the biggest factors affecting our success in that endeavor is local support for this hospital. Do people in the community trust and value what KershawHealth offers enough to make it their first choice for care?
Wednesday's episode of the CW's Arrow is a perfect example of why I watch the show. Such shows -- based on the Green Arrow character from DC Comics -- may be fluff but, in this case, it's intelligent fluff. The writing and acting is spot-on and the producers have paced the first two seasons in a way that doesn't drag things out, but keeps you guessing along the way.
Everyone who's sick of winter, raise your hands.
WASHINGTON -- In matters cultural, California has always been America's petri dish. Whatever happened in California usually infiltrated the rest of the country.
"Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans." John Lennon
We often hear politicians and government officials say that running a government, at any level, is the same as running a business. There obviously is some truth in that. Governments have expenses for personnel, equipment and supplies. They receive funds from their clients (taxpayers) to pay for the services the citizens hopefully receive. Government officials have to budget that money and decide how and where to allocate it to be used.
WASHINGTON -- President Obama's new outreach initiative to help at-risk boys of color -- "My Brother's Keeper" -- is cause for cheer.
This weekend I'm going to a bachelorette party. Actually, it's a combined bachelor/bachelorette party where both the bride and groom-to-be and their closest friends will be in attendance. I'm looking forward to it, but there's always a little bit of anxiety before taking part in an event such as that. I'm sure that's partly due to the Hangover movies and partly due to my own experiences in the past with bachelorette parties.
This is a simple question, and the answer is not simple, but there is something that we can all do to help, and we can do it right now -- today.
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