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“Legal Weed” from The Times and Democrat

“Legal Weed” from The Times and Democrat

Danica Patrick’s Legacy Won’t Be Defined By Her Final Laps

By: Camille Jones/TheFourthTurn.com

INDIANAPOLIS – Danica Patrick’s final race of her career didn’t end as she had hoped, but her historic career will not be defined by her last time climbing behind the wheel of a race car.

Patrick ended the Indy 500 in the 30th position following a crash on lap 68, when the rear end of her No. 13 GoDaddy Chevrolet snapped loose, sending her around as she made heavy impact with the outside wall.

With that wreck, Patrick’s professional racing career that has put her on the national stage since 2005, came to an end.

“Definitely not a great ending, but I kind of said before I came here that I feel like if it’s a complete disaster, ‘complete’ like as in not in the ballpark at all, look silly, then people might remember that,” Patrick said after the accident in her first race back behind the wheel of an IndyCar since 2011. “If I win, people will remember that. But probably anything in between might just be a little part of a big story. So I kind of feel like that’s how it is, you know. I’m appreciative for all the fans, for GoDaddy for Ed Carpenter Racing for giving me a good car. Today was a tough day. A little bit of it was okay, a lot of it was tough to drive.”

She spoke honestly in the final media availability of her racing career.

“I don’t even want to be here because I’m pretty sad,” Patrick said. “I guess I’ll stop there. I will say, though, for sure I’m very grateful for everybody and for being able to finish it up like I wanted to. It still was a lot of great moments this month, a lot of great moments this year.”  Read the rest of this entry »

Kyle Busch Becomes First Driver To Win At Every Active Track With Coca-Cola 600 Win

By: Hunter Thomas/TheFourthTurn.com

CONCORD, N.C. – Kyle Busch lapped all but nine cars in the Coca-Cola 600 as he captured his first points race win at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Sunday. Busch, the driver of the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 18 M&M’s Red White & Blue Toyota becomes the first to win at every active track on the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series schedule, with the exception of the ROVAL at Charlotte that the series will compete at for the first time in September.

The 33-year-old Las Vegas native started on the pole and led 377 of the 400 laps throughout the Coca-Cola 600. Aside from green flag pit stops, at no point was Busch ever challenged for the lead. Busch now has four wins this season.

“It’s awesome,” said Busch about winning at every active track. “I mean I’ve dreamt of that – not only winning here and winning the Coke 600 as a kid and being in victory lane here for this race, but to just be a force that people got to be reckoned with, you know. I go across the country and race Super Late Models because I want to win at every single race track. I just want to show that there is no weakness. My guys have given me that chance here tonight and being able to get to victory lane with this M&M’s Toyota – it sure looks pretty in victory lane here tonight.”

Martin Truex Jr. finished second in the Furniture Row Racing Bass Pro Shops/5-hour ENERGY Toyota. In the closing laps of the race, Truex attempted to chase Busch down, but he was unable to as he finished more than three seconds back. Truex has eight top-10 finishes this season and 10 top-10 finishes at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

“I feel like we’re in decent shape,” Truex said. “Still learning a little bit about the rules this year, the new splitter deal, the last four weeks I feel like has hurt us some and definitely made it more difficult to pass and come through traffic. Tonight was definitely a difficult test because of that, but I thought we were somewhat as fast as Kyle maybe on the short runs, just maybe not the long runs. So we’re not too far off, we just need to keep digging.”  Read the rest of this entry »

Living on Purpose: Remembering those who gave all

Dr. William Holland

By Dr. William Holland

Memorial means to “remember” and every year on the last Monday in May, we honor those who sacrificed their lives in the line of active military service. On Memorial Day we stop and pay our respect to the ones who were willing to stand in the gap between freedom and tyranny! The First Amendment was not only signed into existence with ink but with the blood of over 1.1 million Americans that have died in U.S. wars along with many more that have suffered from physical and mental difficulties. Over the years, numerous families have suffered loss from war including my own and we have a deep appreciation for the men and women that have served to protect our country. My uncle, Kenny Maye was killed in Korea and I have his tags, casket flag and a rare picture of him. He was only 20 years old in 1950 and his body was never found. Sadly, his existence is nearly unknown and I often wonder about the life he could have had.

We are only a few miles from Camp Nelson National Cemetery and from the highway you can see many rows of the over twelve thousand perfectly lined white marble tombstones. At times I’ve often driven past without hardly thinking about how each of these individuals at one time or another accepted the call of duty. And what is that call? To defend and protect our liberties – whatever the cost! Each one of those brave soldiers was willing to give their life for their country and many did. It is said – “All gave some and some gave all.” Truly, the cost of freedom is beyond the imagination. In March 1775, Patrick Henry said, “I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty or give me death.” I am convinced this is the heart cry of all the heroes that have given their lives for our country.  Read the rest of this entry »

Money laundering made easier

Jay Bender

By Jay Bender

Money laundering had its origins with crime syndicates.  Former SLED chief Robert Stewart said that one of the dangers of South Carolina’s legalization of video poker was that it provided a state-wide network of money laundromats.

A video poker operator would report receipts for a poker machine, pay the taxes on the money received, and the money would be cleansed of any taint related to the source of funds.  Stewart said in some instances the receipts reported for a machine would have required feeding large denomination bills into the machine around the clock every day.

Where did the money being laundered come from?  Most likely from the drug trade or other criminal enterprises that dealt in cash.

Money laundering in South Carolina has not been limited to criminal enterprises.  In the late 1980s the Carolina Research and Development Foundation received $2 million from the sale of the Wade Hampton Hotel which was owned by the University of South Carolina.  The Foundation also received a $16 million grant from the federal government and almost $6 million in grants from the City of Columbia and Richland County.

The Foundation resisted requests to disclose how it was spending its money, arguing that it was a private corporation.  The Supreme Court of South Carolina, in a 1991 opinion disagreed, and said in essence, “Follow the money.”  Since the Foundation received public money, it was required under the Freedom of Information Act to disclose how the money was being spent.

Once the Foundation’s records were retrieved from the City of Columbia landfill where they had been “mistakenly” deposited, it became clear why the Foundation wanted its expenditures kept secret.  The Foundation was engaged in activities beneficial to the University of South Carolina, but its treasury was also serving as a slush fund to provide gifts and speaker fees to politicians—gifts and fees that might have been considered unethical or illegal even under our state’s lax standards for public officials.  Read the rest of this entry »

“Blue Wave” from The Times and Democrat

“Blue Wave” from The Times and Democrat

“Trump News” from The Times and Democrat

“Trump News” from The Times and Democrat

“GOP Revolt” by Stuart Neiman

“GOP Revolt” by Stuart Neiman

Living on Purpose: Nothing can be done without hope and confidence

Dr. William Holland

By Dr. William Holland

We spent some time at Cumberland Falls State Park this past week. It’s always refreshing to get away every now and then and behold the breathtaking beauty of nature. The earth is His masterpiece and with all of the magnificent places on the planet, we appreciate the privilege to enjoy His wonderful creation. The trees and flowers are now blooming and we were fortunate to catch a glimpse of many types of birds, a family of deer, squirrels, ground hogs, raccoons, and chipmunks along the trails. The roaring falls is always a spectacular sight and reminds us of God’s amazing power and majesty. After spending a day breathing in the fresh forest air and enjoying the peace and quiet, we ate dinner at the lodge and then retired to our room. Out of habit we turned on the television and discovered there had been another deadly school shooting. How suddenly we were snapped back into the sobering reality of more heartache. Evil can only be stopped when it is removed from the conscience of mankind. Until then, we are faced with the consequences of sin.

The serious Christian is troubled by what is going on in the world but they also realize that God is not panicking or surprised – He is in total control. We also know the Bible predicts that before the return of Christ, the days will become more perilous. So, what can we do? Well, we can make ourselves available to help those in need but there is a condition that many Christians tend to forget. Most people do not really want help. They do not want to hear about God and they do not want to change the way they live. The old saying is true, “You cannot help those who will not help themselves.” Next, we need to learn how to remain calm. The flood of daily negativity can cause fear and anxiety if we become more focused on the chaos than the hope and peace of God’s presence. Yes, there is much wickedness and demonic influence in the world which is why it’s so critical to keep our mind and heart focused on God’s still small voice. This is the only voice that really matters. He is our rock, our refuge, and our anchor that can keep us from being overwhelmed with worry and discouragement. Charles Spurgeon said, Let this one great, gracious, glorious fact lie in your spirit until it permeates all your thoughts and makes you rejoice even though you are without strength. Rejoice that the Lord Jesus has become your strength and your song and has become your salvation.”  Read the rest of this entry »

“Sunlight” from The Times and Democrat

“Sunlight” from The Times and Democrat

“Dog Call” from The Times and Democrat

“Dog Call” from The Times and Democrat

“Never Trump” from The Times and Democrat

“Never Trump” from The Times and Democrat

“Oath of Office” by Stuart Neiman

“Oath of Office” by Stuart Neiman

Living on Purpose: We are the caretaker of our thoughts

Dr. William Holland

By Dr. William Holland

I read a book years ago by Dr. Norman Vincent Peale called, “The amazing results of positive thinking” and I recommend it as an inspiration and encouragement to your spiritual life. He explains that our mind is filled with all types of thoughts and persuasions but everyone is held accountable to manage them. We have the ability to resist and ignore the negative influences that hinder our life and to also embrace the suggestions that are positive and encouraging. I remember after studying about this principle, I had an interesting dream. I do not always place a lot of credibility in dreams because sometimes I think they are related with late-night pizza binges, but on the other hand, the Bible reveals that some dreams have been used a legitimate way that God can communicate. Anyway, here was my dream.

I found myself on a dusty construction site and as I looked around, I noticed workers with shovels and they were busy digging up small trees and bushes. Some were driving trucks and others were using chainsaws and in the distance, I noticed a bulldozer was pushing over large trees. They were obviously clearing the land but I was not sure for what reason. I approached one of the workers and asked who was in charge but he just kept walking. For some reason, I sensed in the dream that Jesus was overseeing this operation and so I started searching for him. I was expecting any moment to see him in a white tunic, sandals, and hard-hat, but I never did. Finally, I saw a man that was writing on a clipboard and he appeared to be a supervisor. I went over to him and said, “excuse me, sir, can you tell me where to find the project manager?” As he started walking away he turned his head and calmly said, “you are.” This is the last thing I remember.  Read the rest of this entry »

Work Paths

Tom Poland

By Tom Poland

Ever stood on Holy ground? Read on.

Monday a fellow told me, “If it weren’t for work, I don’t know what I’d do.” I knew what he meant. For most of us life means work.

Last week I was visiting Aunt Vivian when I told her about the things I’d been working on. “Work makes you feel good,” she said. It does make you feel good. Work is a tonic.

Work was on my mind as I raked up limbs from pruning Mom’s tea olives the other day. It struck me that I was standing on the spot where my working days began. When I was nine, Dad paid me a dime for cutting the grass with an old manual push mower. Paid me right where I stand in the photo. My first “paycheck.” That dime taught me a lesson. You don’t get something for nothing.

As I pruned and raked, I formed a mental list of all the jobs I’ve had. I first worked around the yards and in Dad’s saw shop. Then I worked at Goolsby’s Groceries and later at Central Supermarket in downtown Lincolnton, Georgia. I worked a summer at Reed’s Poultry Plant, a summer at the Almar Rainwear Factory in Washington, Georgia, a summer as a reporter for the old Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation agency, and two unforgettable summers at Elijah Clark State Park.  Read the rest of this entry »

“Mom’s Lament” from The Times and Democrat

“Mom’s Lament” from The Times and Democrat

“House Chaplain” from The Times and Democrat

“House Chaplain” from The Times and Democrat

“Demo Suit” from The Times and Democrat

“Demo Suit” from The Times and Democrat

“What is that smell” by Stuart Neiman

“What is that smell” by Stuart Neiman

Living on Purpose: Trying to make sense of it all

Dr. William Holland

By Dr. William Holland

To be honest, I probably spend too much time watching and being saturated with the news. I feel the need to keep up with the latest developments so that I can at least have an awareness about current events. However, many times I find myself being absorbed in an ocean of information that is not only meaningless but is also negatively impacting my mental and emotional state of being, (especially when much of it is not true). I’m reminded that I have no power to prevent the moral decline of the culture, but I’m convinced that our passion to help make the planet a better place will always be centered on a relentless dedication to prayer and faith. In today’s stressful environment, the average emotional response is a hopeless sigh and to conclude that we are headed in the wrong direction, but nothing is too difficult for God. As Christians, we called to do more than express an emotional concern…we must have a burden to pray. We can and should roll up our sleeves and demonstrate our faith, but God is the only one who truly can help this world and our prayers are directly connected to His unlimited power and authority.  Read the rest of this entry »