Post Tagged with: "Elections"

H.L. Mencken Knocks Congress Out of the Park

November 5, 2016 4:30 AM
H.L. Mencken Knocks Congress Out of the Park

Occasionally you come across a piece of writing that is timeless in its message. The below column by H.L. Mencken is such a piece of work.

He expounds all the faults of Congress in his time, but his message is just as applicable to Congress today.

As everyone focuses on the presidential election in two days, many forget the elections of 435 members of the U.S. House of Representatives and 33 members of the U.S. Senate are at least as important to the future of the country.

For example, we wouldn’t have a 20 trillion national debt if Congress had not passed the funding legislation and continuously raised the debt ceiling to pay for all the wars, social programs, corporate welfare and pure pork that makes up the federal budget each year.

Congress is where most of our problems lie and where voters know very little of what goes on. Yet, 400 or so of these incumbent Congressman and 25 or more of the incumbent Senators up for election will be sent back to Washington with little thought by the voters.

The problem with Congress has been with the country for a very long time as the column below demonstrates.

H.L. Mencken was one of the most influential journalists of the first half of the 20th Century. I don’t know the date of the below column, but Mencken suffered a stroke in 1948 and did no writing thereafter. This would make the column nearly 70 years old at least.

The more things change, the more they stay the same.

H.L. Mencken: Choose Legislators Like We Do Jurors

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Curtis Loftis Speaks Out

May 30, 2016 5:06 AM
Curtis M. Loftis Jr., South Carolina’s treasurer, has pushed to learn more about private equity fees. Credit Dale W. Ferrell for The New York Times

Below is a post by SC Treasurer Curtis Loftis. In it, Loftis describes the oligarchy that is South Carolina state government.

This oligarchy has been the tradition in South Carolina since there has been a state government. This one-party government, controlled behind the scenes by a few rich donors, causes all of the problems that we face in the state today.

South Carolina is now a Republican state. For over a century, it was a Democratic state. However, the party labels mean nothing – the politics in the state have never changed.

In most instances, those that are Republicans today come from families where the fathers and mothers were Democrats 50 years ago.

Party affiliation means nothing when it comes to philosophy of governing. It’s all about getting elected and staying elected. Nothing else matters to most of our politicians.

And to do that, these same politicians must line up and swear blood oaths to the ruling powers behind the scenes.

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By Curtis Loftis

I ran for office and was elected on the sole purpose of reform.

I’ve found, after 6 years of battling the system, that there is no “infrastructure” for change. The levers of power are managed by and tilted in favor of a status quo that is controlled by a handful of people.

To move an issue that results in meaningful change is almost impossible unless there is a calamity of some sort such as a natural disaster or mass shooting.

The system is rigged in favor of a small number of powerful people and their rich cronies that control our government.

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Missing in Atlantic Beach

August 14, 2015 6:00 AM
Missing in Atlantic Beach

(Ed. Note – Filing for municipal elections opens next week. Grand Strand Daily is going to pay special attention to those in Atlantic Beach and Conway, two communities that are missing opportunities but, ripe for change.)

Driving through the streets of Atlantic Beach yesterday, I was shocked by the dearth of people and cars.

Atlantic Beach is probably the only oceanfront community on the Atlantic coast in mid-August with almost empty streets and a nearly empty beach.

The only cars in sight were those parked on the empty oceanfront lots by people either patronizing the local parasail business or enjoying the quiet beach.

The approximately four block oceanfront has only a couple of small buildings breaking up otherwise empty land on what would be the first and second rows of commercial establishments in other beach communities.

The avenues running from Kings Highway to the oceanfront and the cross streets connecting them have a number of empty lots. Empty, often overgrown lots only minutes from the beach!

Atlantic Beach could be a modern case study on missed opportunities.

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Violating S.C. Ethics Law in Awendaw

August 26, 2013 10:00 AM
Violating S.C. Ethics Law in Awendaw

Candidate filing for the upcoming November 5, 2013 municipal elections for the Town of Awendaw city council opened August 22, 2013, and already there appears to be a violation of the S.C. Ethics Law.

The controversy hovers around candidate and current Mayor Pro-Tem Miriam Green and a recent article about her in the official “Town of Awendaw Newsletter”.

The newsletter is produced, printed and mailed by the town using taxpayer dollars to pay for the costs.

Its lead article in the September 2013 issue, which hit the mailboxes of Awendaw residents about the same time that filing opened, was about a community auditorium at the new Berkeley Electric Coop Service Center in Awendaw being named for Green, a 35-year employee of BEC.

IF the article had stopped right there, it would have been fine. However, it went on to praise Green for serving “her community well” and providing “jobs for many Town residents.”

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S.C. Supreme Court to Parties – “Stuff It”

May 3, 2012 2:03 PM
S.C. Supreme Court to Parties – “Stuff It”

The gang that can’t shoot straight was at it again Thursday morning as a motion filed by the Republican and Democratic parties and the state Election Commission was late arriving at the Supreme Court.

Working with a deadline of 10 a.m., the motion, which requested a rehearing of the case, arrived seven minutes after the deadline. Fortunately for the three parties to the motion (can we call them the Three Stooges?) the Court accepted the motion despite its tardiness.

Thursday’s motion said candidates filed their paperwork based on instructions from party officials. The parties said they wanted to make sure that a printed receipt of the electronic filing of Statement of Economic Interests presented with the Statement of Intention of Candidacy or a paper filing of the SEI at the same time an SIC was filed, but without the electronic filing was sufficient to allow candidates on the ballot.

It only took the court a matter of hours to answer the motion. The answer, in the form of an order, was, again, a very strict ruling on state law and a denial of the rehearing request. Essentially, the Court told the “Three Stooges” where to stuff their request.

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Decision Eliminates Many, Questions Remain

May 2, 2012 4:27 PM
Decision Eliminates Many, Questions Remain

It only took the S.C. Supreme Court one day to reach a unanimous decision that candidates who did not strictly follow state law with regard to filing candidacy forms may not be included on the party primary ballot or general election ballot this year.

The Supreme Court found as follows:

“ We grant declaratory relief as follows: (1) that individuals not exempt who are seeking nomination by political party primary to be a candidate for office must file a Statement of Economic Interest (SEI) at the same time and with the same official with whom the individuals file a Statement of Intention of Candidacy (SIC); (2) that an official authorized to receive SICs may not accept the forms unless they are accompanied by an SEI; (3) that an individual who did not file an SEI at the same time and with the same official with whom the individual filed an SIC should not appear on the party primary election ballot or the general election ballot; and […]

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The Masquerader, He’ll Lie and Doesn’t Care

December 14, 2011 2:44 PM
The Masquerader, He’ll Lie and Doesn’t Care

One month before the Republican presidential candidates will be in Myrtle Beach for an important debate, Newt Gingrich has opened a double digit lead over his closest challenger Mitt Romney in South Carolina voter polls.

In a recent NBC News/Wall St. Journal poll, Gingrich holds a 40 percent to 23 percent lead over Romney while a recent Reuters poll had Gingrich leading 28 percent to 18 percent. Yet, even with Gingrich leading, the same polls show Romney as the man most capable of defeating President Obama in November.

Gingrich is a conundrum for Republican voters. Often hailed as a visionary by supporters, Gingrich seems to leave a trail of broken dreams wherever he goes.

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