TheNerve.org

Is there a shortage of solid, well-written investigative news in South Carolina? Sadly, yes. If you want to know what politicians are doing with your money, THE NERVE is your source.

Freest State in the Nation?

Ever wonder why free-market reforms are virtually impossible to pass in a state as “conservative” as South Carolina? There is a reason – and there is a way forward.

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Making South Carolina the freest state in the nation won’t happen overnight, and it won’t happen easily. It’s taking long hours, hard work, and help from our friends, too.

About Us

Who are we?

The South Carolina Policy Council was founded in 1986 by the late Thomas Roe of Greenville as a traditional think tank. The organization’s purpose was – and still is – to publish research and analysis showing the relevance of the American republic’s founding principles: limited government, free enterprise, and individual liberty and responsibility.

But while our principles haven’t changed – nor will they ever – the times have. The internet allows groups like ours to publish new analysis immediately, and social media enable us to reach a wide audience of citizens and public officials as events are happening. Gone are the days when a research organization could publish the occasional lengthy white paper full of dense analysis and remain effective. Read More

Commentary

  • ANALYSIS: Constitutional Carry

      ON CARRYING FIREARMS, THE PRESUMPTION SHOULD BE ONE OF LIBERTY S.105 and companion bills S.570 and H.3716 are all attempts to enact a policy of “constitutional carry.” If passed, any of the bills would make South Carolina the seventh state to legalize constitutional carry. Maine became the sixth state to do so on July 8. Anyone […]

  • Cracking Down on Online Rental Providers

    WHY TAXES AND FEES ON PARTICULAR INDUSTRIES PROTECT  ESTABLISHED COMPANIES AND STIFLE INNOVATION  Companion bills S.862 and H.4329 would stipulate that a third party that makes an accommodation reservation and accepts an accommodation charge is liable for the payment of accommodation taxes. That “third party” could be a rental agent, an online travel company, or […]

  • ANALYSIS: Eminent Domain for Private Companies?

    SOME SLOPES REALLY ARE SLIPPERY Sometimes an innocuous-sounding bill strikes at the heart of what it means to foster a well-functioning representative democracy that protects individual rights. That is the case with two bills currently in the South Carolina legislature. First, some background. Secure and enforceable property rights are the cornerstone of any stable economic […]

  • Budget Process Remains Secretive

    THERE’S ONLY ONE WAY TO ACHIEVE BUDGET TRANSPARENCY, AND THAT’S TO FOLLOW THE LAW  The budget debate this session was one of the most bizarre we’ve seen yet. It wasn’t that many years ago that the state’s Budget and Control Board was making across-the-board budget cuts owing to the recession and the state’s inability to meet its […]

  • Why S.C. Lawmakers Can’t Pass a Budget on Time

    EVERY YEAR, LAWMAKERS TRY TO PASS POTENTIALLY CONTROVERSIAL CHANGES THROUGH THE STATE BUDGET. BUT NOT EVERY PROBLEM IS A FUNDING PROBLEM. Legislators returned to Columbia July 6 for a third week of extended session. The purpose, in part: to vote on the governor’s budget vetoes and thereby finalize the fiscal year (FY) 2016 budget. The […]

  • King v. Burwell: Reality Check for States

    ● U.S. Supreme Court defines federal agency as “state” ● Millions will continue to be subject to individual, employer mandates ● Only one way remains to circumvent ObamaCare Last week the Supreme Court issued its second major ruling on the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which once again sided with the Obama administration. The new ACA […]

  • How Lawmakers Have Made Themselves FTEs

    ‘IF THEY BELIEVE THEY AREN’T BEING PROPERLY COMPENSATED FOR THE WORK THEY DO, THEY SHOULD REDUCE THEIR WORKLOAD’ Watch the General Assembly long enough and you’re sure to hear the popular complaint about how South Carolina lawmakers are underpaid. Rep. Bruce Bannister (R-Greenville) recently proposed an amendment to a budget bill to provide a substantial pay increase […]

  • state house dome

    UPDATE: Surplus, Capital Reserve, Sine Die, Uber

    SESSION IS OVER … ALMOST The third week in June ended on a tragic note in the General Assembly, and attention has rightly been away from legislative business. In the interests of keeping tabs on the legislature, however, here’s a summary of the main business at present. Supplemental appropriations bill  The House passed a supplemental appropriations […]

  • Why the Gas Tax Is a Tax – Not a “Fee”

    THE DISTINCTION IS VITAL, AND STATE LAWMAKERS ARE WRONG TO IGNORE IT A common mentality inside the South Carolina General Assembly holds that all private goods and services belong to government. We’re calling this a mentality, not a doctrine or an explicit belief, because lawmakers rarely if ever state it explicitly. But the mentality is […]

  • ANALYSIS: Senate Compromise on Road Funding

    A COMPROMISE? SURE. A COMPILATION OF ALL THIS YEAR’S BAD IDEAS? THAT TOO. Last week, a majority of Senate Republicans produced a compromise on the subject of road funding. At this point, the legislation itself isn’t available to the public; we only have a press release. But if that release accurately reveals the plan’s details, the […]