WASHINGTON -- The video of James Holmes from inside the Arapahoe County Courthouse was as mesmerizing as it was creepy. His fluorescent mop of pink and orange hair. His vacant eyes, alternately bulging and droopy. Was he medicated? Crazy? Vamping for the camera? And the question, unbidden and against journalistic interest: Should we really be seeing this? Is justice best served by having a camera in this courtroom?
As with other mass shootings, the killings at a movie theater in Aurora, Colo., trigger a familiar chain of reactions: horror, remorse, rage and a call for new restrictions on guns.
In 2010, Broadus R. Littlejohn, a Spartanburg collector, gave Wofford College a very large collection of books, pamphlets, documents and manuscripts. Among his gift were more than two dozen Civil War letters and a diary Lt. William E. Johnson Jr. of Liberty Hill kept from May 1864 until June 1865 while he was a Union prisoner-of-war.
On the surface, it seems silly to devote a column to deconstructing a superhero movie, even a huge blockbuster like The Dark Knight Rises. What could be more frivolous, after all, than spending $10 to $20 bucks (popcorn and drink included) to see a summer flick?
Have you ever smelled a dead whale?
$18 million. That's, reportedly, what it's going to take to get vocal-powerhouse Mariah Carey to sit on the beloved American Idol judging panel.
In the wake of the Colorado catastrophe, in which a maniac shooter killed at least a dozen people in a theater showing the latest Batman movie, everyone seems to be calling for "commonsense" gun laws. Unfortunately it's hard to tell whose sense is common enough these days.
For nearly the last five decades, South Carolina has been represented in the U.S. senate by only four men. By all indications, however, that's set to be five by 2016. A reading of the political tea leaves shows that Sen. Jim DeMint will not be seeking reelection in the fall of 2016.
Herbert Cooke's father worked for the city of Camden. His job was to take care of the city streets. He used either the city's mules, horses or oxen and a bamboo apparatus to clean the brick streets. Nancy Ogburn and George Sandy can recall the brick streets around the old city hall which was located on Rutledge Street.
WASHINGTON -- When it comes to over-the-top politics, the Obama campaign has set a new standard with recent attempts to paint Mitt Romney as a felon.
Twenty years or so ago, I worked at a prominent Columbia-area talk radio station. I worked behind the scenes, pushing buttons and making sure commercials got played when they were supposed to. For a long stretch, I handled the midday shift, from about 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Back then, one of my jobs was airing Rush Limbaugh's titular talk show.
From the time a person is born to the time he dies, he is attempting to measure up or satisfy someone else's whims. For example, as a child he attempts to please his parents or his friends. Later, the spectrum of those he must please expands to all in his social strata, work place, and home. The chore of measuring up never ceases.
The General Assembly met last week to consider Governor Haley's budget vetoes. Having originally decided to meet in September, the Legislature changed its plans because two of the budget vetoes wiped out two state agencies and other vetoes created uncertainties that needed to be resolved quickly, like funding of teacher pay raises before the start of the school year.
He called himself a "solutionist." It's not what's "right" or "left" that counts, he would say; it's what works.
It's been two years since President Obama signed the Wall Street-reform bill that has come to be known as Dodd-Frank. So has it succeeded in creating "safer and more modern rules of the road for the financial industry," as Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner claims?
Hey, y'all! I am Jim McGowan. I am the most recent addition to the award-winning staff of the Chronicle-Independent. I can only hope to live up to their high standards. It will not be easy. I will be the Localife editor and cover the education beat.
A federal nutrition program that places new restrictions on snacks and beverages sold in schools also provides an opportunity for some fresh thinking about school fundraisers.
I remember once I was giving a presentation about important conservation properties in the Piedmont. I showed photos of the incredible rock formations on a particular property and happened to mention their age in an effort to describe their grandeur. Afterwards, I was confronted by an indignant man who told me that the age of rocks cannot be known. He accused me of making those figures up out of thin air. Surprised by his vociferous tone, I told him I was sorry to have upset him. While not a confrontational person, I am a teacher, and I began to politely ...
WASHINGTON -- "Checked the tax code," wrote a friend who's engaged to a woman from a low-tax country. "Unfortunately, marrying [my fiancee] does not entitle me to a tax inversion like the big U.S. companies are getting. Thanks for nothing, IRS."
Their histories, accurate and complete, are lost to time and buried with them and those who knew them. I wish I knew more for their stories would read like a page-turning novel.
OK, OK, yes I'm talking Star Trek again, but hang on, this is really more about newspapers than Star Trek. All right, maybe 50-50.
In 1964, the World's Fair was in New York City. I was 6 years old and went with my parents and older sister to the fair. New York City seemed like a different world to a little boy from Dexter, Mo., but it was all good. We rode on subway trains, we had cheeseburgers in a diner where the staff had funny accents and rode the Staten Island Ferry and saw the Statue of Liberty. I saw a billboard that had the Marlboro man blowing smoke out of his mouth. We were living it up.
In the quest to answer the many questions I receive about trees, see below for part three in the continuing series.
If you have a serious case of wanderlust -- an insatiable desire to see new places and experience unique customs -- then you'll probably envy Alisa Johnson of Seattle, Wash.
Is it hypocritical for a really, really rich person to object to rising inequality?
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