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Noted and passed - Aug. 4, 2014

• For more than a century, KershawHealth's underlying mission has been to provide quality healthcare to all citizens of Kershaw County regardless of socioeconomic status. In other words, at least partially, it provides charity care to those who cannot otherwise afford to pay for hospital services. Currently, KershawHealth allows people whose household income reaches 200 percent of federal poverty guidelines (FPG) to receive a 100 percent discount on their hospital bill. Those up to 300 percent FPG get a 75 percent discount; 400 percent FPG, 50 percent. KershawHealth administrators now propose cutting off any financial assistance at 133 percent FPG ...

August 04, 2014 | | Editorials


Spurrier v. Swinney

Everyone knows that when it comes to sports, football reigns supreme here in Kershaw County and South Carolina. Whereas basketball might be the top sport in neighboring North Carolina, it's a distant second -- or probably even third -- here in the Palmetto State. And these are heady times for gridiron enthusiasts of both the University of South Carolina and Clemson; both teams have enjoyed success in the past few seasons, and that momentum has carried over into recruiting, in which both schools are piling up classes that are among the nation's best.

August 01, 2014 | | Editorials


Negative ads

Kershaw County residents are getting ready to face what other voters across the country are going to see in the next few months: an onslaught of political ads, many of them nasty in character, and a high percentage of them paid for not by candidates but by special interest groups which have amassed millions upon millions of dollars to spread their messages. And, of course, the bulk of those messages will be negative. These groups are both Democratic and Republican, conservative and liberal. Altogether, according to news reports, such factions are going to buy $2 billion worth of ad time ...

July 30, 2014 | | Editorials


Noted and passed - July 28, 2014

• Friday's report that Amtrak is going to spend the next several months refurbishing Camden's passenger rail station off West DeKalb Street is welcome news. Built in 1937, it has shown its age for decades and never more so than now with holes in the platform's canopy, rotting timbers and other problems that make it a less than desirable place to stop. Amtrak says their No. 1 priority is making the facility Americans with Disabilities Act compliant -- and that's a very good thing -- from the parking lot to the station and onto the platform and train. But ...

July 28, 2014 | | Editorials


Rhame Arena

We're glad to see that the city of Camden is exploring alternatives for aging Rhame Arena. The building is becoming more dilapidated with each passing year, and something needs to be done, whether it's razing it or restoring it. Of course, money is a factor, just as it is in all government decisions these days. We will say that city officials have overworked the bureaucratic jargon in their appraisal of the situation, saying an "adaptive reuse" could be a possible alternative. We are assuming "adaptive reuse" means repairing the building and making it feasible for some type of ...

July 25, 2014 | | Editorials


A disturbing trend

We wrote recently of the disturbing trend in the White House of spinning every issue through press spokesmen rather than engaging in open questioning about issues of interest to Americans. A lack of transparency isn't limited to the federal government, as the S.C. Supreme Court has recently issued two troubling rulings which limit public access in the Palmetto State.

July 23, 2014 | | Editorials


Noted and passed - July 21, 2014

• It looks like it's full steam ahead for KershawHealth and its strategic plan. In recent weeks, we have reported on the creation -- after several years of hard work -- of a general surgery division; the recruitment of a new orthopedic surgeon; the signing of an agreement with Orthopedic Advantage to create a top-level orthopedic center in Kershaw County; and an already established agreement with Team Health to transform KershawHealth's emergency department in order to fast-track non-emergent patients allowing staff to focus on those in true emergency situations. Dr. T. Chris Tran, the new orthopedic surgeon, joined Camden Bone & Joint ...

July 21, 2014 | | Editorials


Not so transparent

President Obama, who promised the most transparent administration in history, has delivered perhaps the least transparent. Following the trend of other recent presidents, Obama has kept a tight lid on the press, rarely interacting with reporters in a spontaneous fashion and instead relying on the spin of his White House press directors. And it has gotten worse the longer Obama has been in office; one report last week indicated that the administration was denying access on a variety of subjects with increasing regularity. The Associated Press reported, "In category after category -- except for reducing numbers of old requests and a ...

July 18, 2014 | | Editorials


Obama and race

Attorney General Eric Holder's recent statement that race plays a part in some Americans' opposition to President Obama's policies has stirred strong reaction from both liberals and conservatives, and reaction has highlighted the fact -- no surprise here -- that blacks and whites often look at issues of race differently. We suspect that Kershaw County would mirror the national opinions of a recent Gallup poll in which people were asked whether this country's criminal justice system is biased against blacks. More than two-thirds of whites said no, while about the same percentage of blacks said yes.

July 16, 2014 | | Editorials


Noted and passed - July 14, 2014

• For years, the public and the media have made fun of celebrities for mangling The Star-Spangled Banner at sporting and other major events. While we didn't hear of any particular instances this Independence Day, we did hear of one local "star" who did their hometown proud: 12-year-old Louisa DeLoach. As we related on our front page Wednesday, Louisa is a rising seventh-grader at Camden Middle School. She played percussion in the sixth grade band and also plays guitar. She also sings our national anthem. The first time most people heard her do so was at this year's Carolina ...

July 14, 2014 | | Editorials


Harrell ruling

We were glad to see the S.C. Supreme Court rule that Alan Wilson, the state's attorney general, can continue his probe into possible improprieties by Bobby Harrell, speaker of the House of Representatives. Lawyers for Harrell had attempted to have Wilson removed from the case. Wilson had originally asked a state grand jury to investigate whether Harrell had broken ethics laws in several different instances.

July 11, 2014 | | Editorials


War on cancer

The war on cancer, begun with so much optimism several decades ago, has not proven to be as successful as scientists and physicians had hoped. Though there have certainly been breakthroughs, especially in the field of early diagnosis, cures for many forms of cancer have remained elusive. And the hope of eliminating the dread disease altogether isn't any more a reality today than it was long ago.

July 09, 2014 | | Editorials


Noted and passed - July 7, 2014

• We hope everyone enjoyed their Fourth of July weekend, with fireworks, grilling out and generally having fun. We should all remember, of course, that the Fourth is Independence Day, commemorating that day 238 years ago that the original 13 colonies declared their independence from the British crown. Actually signed on July 2, final approval came on July 4 and, so, with that date on the publication, Americans came to celebrate that date as its independence from England. Since then, brave men and women have fought and died both to secure that independence and maintain this country's freedoms. Among those ...

July 07, 2014 | | Editorials


The presidency

It's not easy being president these days. If you doubt that, look no further than a recent poll by Quinnipiac University, a respected non-partisan entity that doesn't have an ax to grind with either major political party. The new poll shows that President Obama is now regarded as the worst president since World War II, surpassing George W. Bush, who was previously considered the worst. It's no coincidence that the two chief executives at the bottom of the standings are the last two to serve in the Oval Office.

July 04, 2014 | | Editorials


Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton is already being anointed by some Democrats as the party's next presidential nominee, but some people have short memories. Clinton also was being handed the party's crown prior to the 2008 election, but a man named Barack Obama came along and Clinton abruptly slid into second place. Now, after giving up the secretary of state's position, Clinton's poll numbers are already falling, and she's starting to make some gaffes that are dimming the luster.

July 02, 2014 | | Editorials


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Articles by Section - Editorials


Black Friday

Thanksgiving generally marks the beginning of the Christmas shopping season, though commerce in this country is a continually changing animal. Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving when many stores have kicked off big sales and deep discounts, appears to be lessening in importance. Retail experts say there's more of a trend now in discounting that starts before Black Friday and extends well beyond it. Shoppers have become so accustomed to discounting among retailers that many are determined from the outset not to pay full price for anything.

November 28, 2014 | | Editorials


Editorial: Thanksgiving

On Sept. 28, 1789, according to a government website, the First Federal Congress passed a resolution asking President George Washington recommend to the nation a day of thanksgiving. The site goes on to describe what happened: a few days later, Washington issued a proclamation naming Thursday, Nov. 26, 1789, as a "day of public thanksgiving" -- the first time the holiday was celebrated by our fledgling country.

November 26, 2014 | | Editorials


Noted and passed - Nov. 24, 2014

• Property rights vs. community pride is a conflict as old as civilization itself. In recent months, we've reported on two attempts to regulate the appearance of properties in an effort to clean up our communities. Back in October, Kershaw County Council rejected, 3-4, third reading of an ordinance which would have given the county authority to demolish uninhabitable dwellings deemed a nuisance to neighbors or the community at large. More recently, Bethune Town Councilman John Fulmer proposed an ordinance which, if passed in December, would fine owners of blighted properties if they don't clean them up after being ...

November 24, 2014 | | Editorials


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