Not By The Hair of Our Chinny-Chin-Chin ·
State political leaders are pushing for local governments and law enforcement agencies to do a better job following South Carolina's open meeting and records law, known to most as the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). According to The Associated Press, a recent report shows "one-fourth of county council and school board members surveyed said they had broken the closed meeting law and a quarter of police agencies broke a law requiring immediate access to crime reports." The report was the result of a joint project between the AP, the South Carolina Press Association, and (gulp) papers like The Post and Courier. Gov. Mark Sanford, who used to hold more meetings behind closed doors, seems to be following the advice of S.C. Attorney General Henry McMaster, who wrote in a FOIA handbook for officials across the state: "When in doubt, disclose requested information. When in doubt, post the time, place, and purpose of the meeting. When in doubt, open the meeting to the public. When in doubt, release the document." How about this corollary: When in doubt, tell the truth. --Bill Davis

Haiku O'The Week
Bush spares two turkeys
Not named Scooter or Cheney
Plate of crow waiting

Size Isn't Everything ... but it's a start ·
Looks like Clemson University has heard something. After months of screeching and hair-pulling over the site selection, and more recently the mass/size/scale, of the new Clemson Architecture Center in Charleston (CACC), residents of the historic Ansonborough neighborhood might finally be getting somewhere. Lord knows, they've tried. Earlier this month, residents spilled into the foyer of a third-floor meeting room at 75 Calhoun to wail against the overall volume of the new CACC slated to be built on two adjacent George Street parking lots. Now, after a recent Mayor Joe Riley-Clemson President John Barker phone call, things are about to change. Barker has sent word to the architects designing the new building to drop its overall size, currently weighing in at over 21,000 square feet, and move the building off the southern property line, where it would force windows to be bricked in at an apartment building directly behind it. But Barker insists the new building will be clad in radioactive titanium so it will be visible from space. OK, that last one was a lie. --BD

Him Speak With Fork'd Tongue? ·
A recent AP investigation discovered that Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) had taken campaign money in 2002 from Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff, whose name is often bandied around these days with other words like "prison term" and "guilty as hell." Abramoff was working at the time for a Louisiana Native American tribe trying to get federal clearance to build a new casino. Abramoff had been known to represent rival tribes in the area, but DeMint denied any connection to Abramoff's clients in The State last week. DeMint fell back on his position against casino gambling but refused to speak further on how the money was used. DeMint wasn't alone, apparently, as 32 other politicians accepted contributions from the said lobbyist, his associates, and actual rival tribes. --Neal Sakash


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