Opinion Extra

New views


- "It will be a historical document on the record. ... It is a penalty. He doesn't lose his office; he isn't fined. It is the only thing we can do at this point to express to the public our disapproval of the governor's conduct."

House Judiciary Chairman Jim Harrison,

on the vote to censure rather than impeach Gov. Mark Sanford

- "You idiots can't do any better than to meet four times to talk about something as serious as impeachment."

Rep. Todd Rutherford, D-Richland,

expressing what he later said was the public's perception


Commentary from elsewhere

Texting while driving

At least three bills will be introduced in the legislature next year to ban texting while driving in South Carolina. We support the effort to make roads and highways safer and encourage legislators to find the right solution to this pressing dilemma.

Whether the answer involves a fine or mandatory jail time, South Carolina should follow the lead of 14 other states and the District of Columbia in cracking down on the practice. It will not be easy.

Law enforcement officials have told us texting while driving has surpassed drunken driving as the biggest safety issue they face routinely.

We do not take their cautionary words lightly.

The Morning News


Health care costs

Americans without Medicare insurance have become the driving issue in the debate over health care reform. But those uninsured people aren't always victims of the system.

Some of them are also pioneers in what could become the future of the health care industry. Because they pay out of pocket, many uninsured persons have become skilled price shoppers.

That is also true for Americans with "high deductible" insurance coverage that requires large personal outlays before paying for health services. This health consumer trend should not be discouraged by public policy. ...

There now are Web sites where doctors and hospitals willing to negotiate with patients can post their prices and where consumers can report and compare health care prices. ...

The move toward a more consumer-oriented model of health care pricing stands in sharp contrast to existing practice under most private and government health insurance plans. ... People paying for themselves usually get a much higher price quote.

Price shopping by people with high out-of-pocket health care costs could help change that inequitable system. And that would be a beneficial development for the nation's health care industry.

The Post and Courier


Iraq's instability

The five car-bombs that killed 127 people and wounded hundreds more in Baghdad last week made two aspects of the continuing mission in Iraq very clear:

The country is not yet stable. Iraqi security forces have taken on all responsibility for security in their own nation, but they're not yet quite ready to handle this job.

U.S. troops, of whom 120,000 are still on the ground in a training, advisory and backup role, are still needed. But, thankfully, they do not appear to be under nearly as much threat as in recent years.

...The American military has made huge strides in improving security and preparing Iraqi forces to continue that progress when it leaves. But this week's brutal attacks, for which al-Qaida has claimed responsibility, make it clear that job is not finished.

Kansas City Star


- "There is no remedy for love but to love more."

Henry David Thoreau


- "In him was life; and the life was the light of men."

John 1:4