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Noted and passed - Nov. 18, 2013

• One of the great talents of the modern musical world was Roy Orbison, who died in 1987 at age 52. Orbison's sons plan to soon release a host of previously unknown music which the multi-talented singer recorded in the years preceding his death. The sons vow these are not outtakes or junk songs, but tunes which will enhance the singer's stature rather than reduce it. Orbison, of "Oh, Pretty Woman" fame, left the earth too soon, and his fans will no doubt relish these new releases.

November 18, 2013 | | Editorials


Airline merger

It remains to be seen whether Kershaw County travelers will benefit or suffer from the merger of USAirways and American Airlines, a move which was approved by the Justice Department earlier this week. Some consumer groups opposed the merger on grounds that it will reduce competition and ultimately lead to higher ticket prices. But at Charlotte's Douglas International Airport, which is used by many local travelers, USAirways already controls about 90 percent of the flights, so it's not going to make a huge competitive difference there.

November 15, 2013 | | Editorials


‘I didn’t know’

The rollout of the Affordable Care Act, more popularly known as Obamacare, has become the most outrageous exercise in "I didn't know, don't blame me" that could be imagined. Meanwhile, the online registration system continues to fail, and now it's revealed that people trying to sign up for Medicaid are experiencing some of the same enrollment problems as those attempting to register for private insurance. Were it not so pathetic, the entire matter would be laughable, even as representatives of the administration continue to portray it as little more than minor glitches.

November 13, 2013 | | Editorials


Noted and passed - Nov. 11, 2013

• When Blockbuster started its video rental stores in the 1980s, it was a marvel of technology -- movies available immediately, with a wide choice. Dish Network, which bought the company out of bankruptcy in 2011, announced last week it would close all remaining company-owned stores, finalizing a signal change in how people get their entertainment. Streaming video and other more modern technologies have made the video rental business obsolete. Indeed, we live in a changing world.

November 11, 2013 | | Editorials


Go play outside

It's no secret that childhood obesity -- right here in Kershaw County and across the nation -- has reached epidemic proportions. And statistics indicate that obese kids become obese adults, complete with all the health complications that come with being overweight. At the same time, officials of national parks across the country are grappling with the fact that kids don't have the same enthusiasm for being outside that previous generations did. In fact, a movement called "Leave No Kid Inside" attempts to revive the spirit of adventure and exercise that is disappearing all too fast for all too many kids ...

November 08, 2013 | | Editorials


KH trustees

It's been a turbulent year for the board of trustees at KershawHealth, with flowing red ink, major management changes and a transition in leadership of the board itself. Given all that, and with the future of the hospital as a locally owned institution at stake, it would make perfect sense for board members to ensure an open and transparent -- yes, that's an overused word, but it's appropriate -- process as they search for an interim CEO to fill the position of Donnie Weeks, who recently stepped down under pressure. After all, public trust in the hospital has never ...

November 06, 2013 | | Editorials


Noted and passed - Nov. 4, 2013

• We're glad to see Catharine Ammons and James Watson of Kershaw County sentenced to long prison terms for their role in abusing Ammons' daughter (see today's front page). The couple battered her unmercifully, and the little girl's barely survived broken bones, damaged organs and malnutrition. They were given 20 years in prison, and we hope they'll ponder their misdeeds during their long years beyond bars, which is exactly where they belong.

November 04, 2013 | | Editorials


Iowa

Out in Iowa, a state whose early presidential caucuses have given it inordinate influence over the political process, Republicans are worried that the state is losing influence because far-right conservatives are dominating the process and causing some moderate GOP White House hopefuls to consider skipping the state. Actually, the country would probably be better off if Iowa's caucuses didn't carry such weight, because they allow a small percentage of the electorate there to play such a big role in presidential momentum.

November 01, 2013 | | Editorials


YMCA ruling

The latest chapter in the city of Camden's now-defunct attempt to build a new YMCA facility was written last week when a circuit court judge ruled the city had been within its legal rights to attempt to use hospitality tax revenue to construct the facility. Ultimately, the city's controversial plan for a Y was defeated in a November 2012 referendum, and the furor surrounding the matter played a major role in Mayor Jeffrey Graham's defeat. So, Judge Alison Renee Lee's ruling was something of a Pyrrhic victory for the city. Yet it did vindicate some elected ...

October 30, 2013 | | Editorials


Noted and passed - Oct. 28, 2013

• There's a bit of confusion and disagreement among Camden City Council members and officials about just how quickly the development process for the former Maxway building site should move, but one thing is clear: without any improvement at all, the site already looks better than it did when the rotting building stood there. It will be interesting to see what finally happens, but we'll offer a tip of the hat to council members for proceeding with the demolition.

October 28, 2013 | | Editorials


Healthcare.gov

The website rollout of the Affordable Care Act, popularly known as Obamacare, is almost a parody of all that is wrong with government and the way it functions in too many cases. We're not referring here to the bill itself; certainly there are those in Kershaw County who think the concept of Obamacare is a wonderful thing and there are others who see it as a poorly conceived, overly expensive plan that the country can't afford.

October 25, 2013 | | Editorials


California answer?

There are undoubtedly many Kershaw County residents fed up with the gridlock in politics. The recent government shutdown was unnecessary and avoidable, and it represented all that is bad about Washington and the way our country is run. While Congress itself gets single-digit approval ratings from the public, people across the country seem to like their own representatives, and they return them to office again and again. Part of that is because redistricting in most states -- drawing the lines that make up congressional districts -- is done by the party in charge, which tends to create safe havens for members of ...

October 23, 2013 | | Editorials


Noted and passed - Oct. 21, 2013

• During her years in Camden, Karen Eckford has taken on numerous civic responsibilities, donating countless hours to various causes. She now faces her most challenging assignment as she assumes the chairmanship of the KershawHealth Board of Trustees. The hospital is at a critical juncture and the next couple of years will go far in determining whether it remains independent or is taken over by a larger institution. We wish her well in her duties.

October 21, 2013 | | Editorials


Cell phone towers

Members of the Lake Wateree Association, voicing the sentiments of many lake residents as well as people who live in other rural areas of the county, say more cell phone towers are needed to improve communication. The association urged people to attend a Monday night meeting of the county's planning and zoning commission to make their voices heard and they're also asking citizens to show up at the next county council meeting. Council had passed on two readings a measure that would have made it more feasible to increase the number of cell towers, but suddenly tabled that ...

October 18, 2013 | | Editorials


American Party

History hasn't been kind to third-party movements in this country, but that's not deterring two South Carolinians -- one with Democratic roots and the other with a Republican background -- from trying to launch the American Party, which they contend can be a viable alternative to the two majority parties. Jim Rex, who was superintendent of education in this state, and Oscar Loveless, a physician who once ran for governor, think voters need another option. In light of the gridlock in which our Congress has become mired, that's not a bad idea. The odds are long against the success ...

October 16, 2013 | | Editorials


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Articles by Section - 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


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