The Wire

BACK LIKE A BRAND NEW INVENTION … By FITSNEWS ||  Our founding editor Will Folks is a text messaging freak … like, bad. Impossible to reach by telephone, he’s also one of those annoyingly self-important people with perpetually full voicemails – meaning you can’t ever leave him a message.  But when it…


By FITSNEWS ||  Our founding editor Will Folks is a text messaging freak … like, bad.

Impossible to reach by telephone, he’s also one of those annoyingly self-important people with perpetually full voicemails – meaning you can’t ever leave him a message.  But when it comes to texting, he’s “Johnny on the Spot” with his responses – especially when it’s drop dead gorgeous lobbyists making the ask.

To wit …

“Isn’t it time for another edition of the wire?” one such lobbyist recently inquired.

Why yes … yes it is.  (Swoon).

Hold up … what is “The Wire?”  It’s a (far too) sporadically published interactive feature in which our founding editor fields tips, comments, questions and other incoming communications from you, our beloved readers.

How sporadically? Sheesh … it’s been forever since we last published one (which is totally “our bad”).

Basically “The Wire” gets our readers more directly involved … which is a good thing.  Especially on major news days like today – which saw one of the most powerful politicians in South Carolina step down from office and one of the craziest politicians in South Carolina, well … do THIS.  Allegedly.

Anyway … wanna play?  Share a tip? Send a link? Ask a question? Submit a comment?

Reach out (anonymously or otherwise) via our tip wire … and remember, in addition to confidentially investigating your leads we also publish letters to the editor and guest editorials (even anonymous ones) in the event you’ve got more to say on a subject.  Also feel free to reach out to our founding editor directly at w@fitsnews.com.

To the wire!



bobby harrell goes down

RE: Exclusive: Bobby Harrell To Plead Guilty, Resign From Office

Dear Editor, I won’t believe it till I see it but good golly miss molly! Glory glory hallelujah! Ding dong the witch is dead!  Long live Fits News! And long live the Nerve! Bet they will not laugh when the names of those two web sites are announced at the governor’s debates in years to come!  Great news Fits! Please please PLEASE tell me Nikki Haley is next!

Keep it up please you are a true journalist and thank you so much for holding our corrupt leaders accountable for their actions.




Britton: Pretty sure the Speaker brought himself down – prosecutors (and media) were just following the evidence.   Actually, as it relates to the charges on which Harrell will reportedly plead guilty – all credit should go to Renee Dudley, formerly of The (Charleston, S.C.) Post and Courier.  She’s the one who did the research and broke the story on the controversial reimbursements.  As we noted she paid for her intrepidness with her job – but it would now appear as though she got her man.  As for your hope that Nikki Haley is next, we touched on the selective prosecution component of this case extensively in our coverage of the Harrell guilty plea.  Rest assured that narrative is going to figure prominently in our coverage moving forward.  



RE: Thomas Ravenel Faces Assault Allegations

Dear Editor: Nice try but you sold us this guy’s snake oil for months. You own it. You can try to distance yourself from Ravenel but nobody is buying it.  Own up, man up. Don’t be a pussy. Go down with the ship.  Otherwise everyone will see you for what most people already know you are – a fair weather friend who will stab anyone in the back the moment it suits your needs.  Or the moment they stop paying you.

“We realized a month ago …”

No you did not.  You ran the sociopaths advertisements on your site for weeks on end while you ran his pro-gay, anti-war liberal propaganda. Then he decided to go pro-family, pro-military on television and you whined because your advice was no longer being taken, right?  That’s what really happened isn’t it? Or maybe you were to butt ugly to be invited back to “Southern Charm 2” so you decided to take it out on him on your pathetic little blog.

You two deserve each other.



sic speaking

Nick: You’re right. This website aggressively promoted Ravenel’s candidacy in the beginning because we believed he could emerge as a credible alternative to U.S. Sen Lindsey Graham – one of the most dangerous elected officials in all of America.  Clearly, Ravenel did not emerge as such a credible alternative – which is something that became clear long before this latest incident.  As a good friend of mine texted me today, it’s a shame too because “philosophically he is dead on.”  We hope Thomas gets the help he needs.  He’s clearly a troubled individual with some demons that sorely need to be addressed, and we hope he takes the path of self-healing not self-destruction.



RE: Richard Eckstrom’s Son Wants CDV Rap Expunged

Dear Editor: You need to answer for this.  Where exactly do you get off writing about CDV? You were convicted of criminal domestic violence in 2005. Where do you summon the authority from to even bring this issue up – to say nothing of pontificating on and on as though you are not yourself a wife-beater! You are lecturing solicitors for offering (pre-trial intervention) and people like Brad Eckstrom – who unlike you have NOT been convicted of CDV – for taking PTI???


I think I speak for many readers of your gossip site when I say you would be better off avoiding this issue in the future.  What little credibility you have is at stake.



will folks david asiamah

F.O.A. – I think it’s abundantly clear I don’t care about credibility … which may be why I continue to accumulate it in such abundance in this state.  As for the 2005 situation, I’ve addressed it repeatedly in the past.  In fact I continue to address it daily via the life I lead with my beautiful wife and family.  But hey – like I always say you are a click away from never having to read another word I write.





Dear Editor, You neglected to point out a five-point drop in your beloved independent vote in the latest Gallup poll. Funny how you missed that. Do you only report on this number when independents show higher numbers? Sort of like you only report on the stock market when it’s going down?  Please be consistent if you wish to have even a shred of credibility.

-Dr. Ned



Dr. Ned: Thanks for that.  I’m not sure of the margin of error on the Gallup data, but independents have polled at or above 40 percent on its partisan ID measure for the last nineteen months.  Meanwhile the GOP hasn’t broken 30 percent since November 2012.  Just saying …



(Via FITSNews FB page) Pao Lin Hatch says …

“You should check out Carolina Moon Distillery in Edgefield … maybe an article about the Micro Distilleries popping up all over the state but specifically in the middle part!”

carolina moon distillery


sic speaking

Pao Lin: Lamentably with 8.5 years sober I am confined to the enjoyment of non-alcoholic brews.  Which made this year’s Oktoberfest a real bummer.  This sounds like a job for my colleague Liz Gunn.  She’s down with drinking on the job.




Dear Editor; Looking for a penpal?

Click HERE.

In South Carolina, click HERE and HERE.



Wow … isn’t this the sort of thing that got notorious child killer Susan Smith in trouble?



nikki rotary

(Via FITSNews FB page) Mary Hatch says …

Governor Haley had a good debate tonight …

(Video HERE).


sic speaking

Mary: That’s funny! I mean, teacher pay is a loser issue … but that’s a nice clip of the governor getting caught in another “insta-contradiction.’



RE: Alan Wilson‘s Office: (via the Post and Courier)

…. The Attorney General’s Office is considering taking legal action to recover money the Berkeley County School district has spent for private criminal defense lawyers.

“Our position is you can’t use public funds for private defense,” Attorney General’s Office spokesman Mark Powell said.

Berkeley School District wrong to pay indicted employee’s legal fees for committing felony.

Through mid-September, the district has paid $275,000 to Kovach, Franchini and Childs & Halligan. Mahoney has said the district has “a statutory obligation to provide legal representation for its employees.” … Criminal representation, that is. These lawyers are obviously milking the cow for everything they can and should be exposed for the blood sucking leaches they are. They are over charging and robbing the tax payers via inflated fees and untruthful billing.

“district employees illegally campaigned during work hours and used district resources for passage of a $198 million bond issue” ….

AG Wilson’s Office is doing the right thing. They even go after unscrupulous lawyers.



Yup. Nice To see him doing that.



ivory tower

Dear Editor, I didn’t know if you had heard of this film “Ivory Tower.”  Much of the content jibes with your stories on the bloated costs associated with state-supported (and some private) schools…

Trailer: http://youtu.be/eLdU7uts4ws




will folks david asiamah

Mike: Cool! Sorry we missed this film’s premiere at the Nickelodeon on Monday night.  Hopefully it will be widely available soon.  We agree with its conclusions 100 percent.



Hi Editor,

I took these photos of two signs advertising in favor of the Lexington County one cent sales tax increase.  What a bunch of liars!  Would be interesting to know who paid for these expensive signs?  Probably Lexington County using taxpayers’ dollars to advertise for higher taxes.

Please feel free to use these pictures any way you want.




Anon: Thanks for passing these along! Not sure whether taxpayer funds subsidized those billboards but we are digging into the Lexington County, S.C. tax hike proposal in more detail and hope to file a story prior to the November 4 vote.



Happy (21st?) birthday to the super-talented, super-lovely Christina Wilson – one of our all-time favorite people on the whole planet who recently took a new post as a child advocate in the Palmetto Lowcountry (something she’s been doing for years on her own).

Keep up the great work, Chrissi …



(Click to play)

All The Rage Back Home” by Interpol. Album: El Pintor (released September 2014).


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Savethechildren October 22, 2014 at 8:47 pm

Renee Dudley also broke the story of First Steps cutting disabled kids from Babynet to save cash. Still a debacle over there. SC is worst in the nation for services to disabled babies and toddlers.

EREY October 22, 2014 at 9:54 pm

When is this total waste of money FIRST STEPS going to be kicked down the steps and closed down. This group is USELESS and even their own board members admit it. Are you listening legislators????

anonymous October 23, 2014 at 1:46 pm

R U Listening reporters? Disabled, vulnerable children are falling through the cracks. Director DeVenny of First Steps is paid more than anyone in Dept. of Education. She took off for 23 days without reporting her leave, she gave reporters “questionable statistics about FS saving millions for SC taxpayers. She hasn’t been fired. BIG story here.

Beachtiger0412 October 22, 2014 at 10:03 pm

Give me the days of great reporters like Renee Dudley, Yvonne Wenger and Gina Smith – only ones I ever knew to really stand up to Nikki Haley. Gina Smith wins award for discovering Mark Sanfords trek.
Those women are fierce investigative reporters.

RHood2 October 22, 2014 at 11:56 pm

Gina Smith doesn’t become the Gina Smith we know, adn doesn’t go to that airport, without the late, great Jim Davenport uncovering that the Lov Guv was missing.
He is SORELY missed.

ScrewedNSC October 22, 2014 at 9:18 pm

The video of Gov. Haley debating herself is hilarious. After watching that I may just change my vote. I’ve voted for Gov. Haley four years ago,but this year may be a different story. Whoever did the video needs to work on their editing skills a little bit. I wonder what Congressman Wilson’s thoughts are considering his cameo appearance.

Deo Vindice SC October 23, 2014 at 4:56 am

Please, you will vote republican no matter who it is.

ScrewedNSC October 23, 2014 at 8:09 am

Either Independent Republican or Sheheen. Still deciding. Time for a Honest Governor!

Dave Chappelle I'm Rick James October 23, 2014 at 9:12 am

“Time for a Honest Governor!”

I’m afraid you’ll have to keep waiting until . . . forever?

Gregory Geddings October 23, 2014 at 8:22 am

Sheheen looked like a complete putz when he fielded the issue regarding legalization of marijuana. He didn’t address the question at all. Instead he launched into a droning dialog about how there are better ways to deal with SC’s budget issues.
What a douche!

Squishy123 October 23, 2014 at 9:18 am

Sheheen hasn’t done a damn thing but complain about what Haley’s doing. He offers no other alternatives, no solutions, just complains like the big nosed Jew he is.

Gregory Geddings October 23, 2014 at 6:36 pm

You are creepy…

Mike Green October 22, 2014 at 9:35 pm

Funny video of Trickey Nikki.

Deo Vindice SC October 22, 2014 at 9:45 pm

We are done in SC. It’s a Republican State. Why do we even vote ?

Squishy123 October 23, 2014 at 9:20 am

Well you could run buses from the local black churches and welfare offices to the polls like what was done when T-Bone and that nice Irishman O’bama ran for office.

EREY October 22, 2014 at 9:50 pm

Good luck getting information on the Lexington Penny for Pork thing. The crooks behind this have already siphoned $450k of taxpayers money to a Banning campaign contributor for dubious engineering work. If this passes, you can be assured loads of cash will be finding its way into pockets instead of projects. These liars won’t even disclose who is contributing to them and I hear they have raised over 200k. I hope Lexington voters are smart enough not to fall for the lies and vote against this sham. All I need to know is this rape of taxpayers is led by the head of the COLUMBIA home builders group and Mungo butt-boy and a woman who lives in NORTH CAROLINA who was Irmo chamber of commerce head and closet Democrat tax-raising Johnny Turncoat and his butt-boy liberal Democrat Joe Mergo, Halfwit and Banning. Banning will screw Lexington until day his term is finally up. Hopefully new councilman Ned Tolar will get to bottom of the Lexington shit pile and expose the cabal and crooks because nobody else has been able to do it. If I was him I’d watch my back.

CorruptionInColumbia October 23, 2014 at 3:01 am

Tolar had a recent press conference where he disclosed a lot of the dirty dealings that LexCo Council members were involved in with this “penny tax” fraud they are trying to inflict on the citizens of Lexington County. Some of the things revealed were that the company that they have paid an obscene amount of money to ($450,000 or so) is also the company that will be awarded a lot of the road contracts and such, WITH NO BID. This company also is said to have contributed to the campaigns of Debbie Summers, Johnny Jeffcoat, and Banning. Imagine that!

Meanwhile by all appearances, Kershaw County’s gullible citizens are going to vote for the increase because they need stuff for their fire departments and “for the chirrun” with school issues. Like many who would give politicians permission to steal more money from them under threat of force, they don’t seem to realize the money for actual NEEDS is already there, just that it’s being squandered on non-necessities. Kershaw County’s Sheriff, who comes from a federal agency with a bottomless budget, begs for money at every turn because he has mismanaged the shit out of his budget, pouring good after bad into his expensive traffic unit that rarely does anything but traffic stuff. Calls for service may have to wait for quite a while, but his traffic boys can’t be bothered with answering calls for service. Hell, in a lot of cases they can’t even be bothered to back up fellow deputies who are calling for help and need it.

As an aside to Matthews’ terminal case of the “can’t help its”, he also cannot make the best of existing state laws and deal with unnecessary or dangerous gunfire in neighborhoods as many Sheriffs in SC do. Noooo, old Jim has to try and get a draconian county ordinance passed so that it is illegal to shoot a gun near your own home, even if in a safe direction with plenty of backstop. Thankfully, Council saw through him on that one.

Dave Chappelle I'm Rick James October 23, 2014 at 9:14 am


9" October 22, 2014 at 9:51 pm

Happy Birthday,Sonny Criss!


Deo Vindice SC October 22, 2014 at 9:53 pm

Great to have a birthday for a Republican Party indoctrination.

E Norma Scok October 22, 2014 at 10:17 pm

So what was the deal with the T-Rav commercial and story that vanished?

The Colonel October 22, 2014 at 10:36 pm

Why no coverage of what may have been the silliest gubernor debate in history?
Is Morgan “…can you repeat the question…” Reeves deaf or just really that stupid?
Did Morgan “vote for me, I’m not them” Reeves and Steve “independent business man”French share a joint after the debate? I’m pretty sure they’d both had one before the debate.
Tom “the judge” Ervin looks the most gubernatorial, right up until he opens his mouth

Thomas October 22, 2014 at 10:59 pm

Hum, nice state of affairs when this man has to indulge his vices by proxy.

RHood2 October 22, 2014 at 11:54 pm

If you ran the Wire consistently, you wouldn’t have to explain what it is every time. Wasted “ink.”
Renee Dudley deserves a lot of kudos, and did exit her job, but she went immediately to a better gig. She’s at Bloomberg, and is tearing Walmart a new butthole. So much so that she has been banned from their board meetings.
She left on her own terms, despite being thrown under the bus.

Dave Chappelle I'm Rick James October 23, 2014 at 9:13 am

Good point about having to explain what the Wire actually is.

Gregory Geddings October 23, 2014 at 8:18 am

Good job, Will! You continued where Renee left off. You kept poking this crook with a sharp stick and eventually he hollered uncle.

nitrat October 23, 2014 at 9:04 am

“This website aggressively promoted Ravenel’s candidacy in the beginning because we believed he could emerge as a credible alternative to U.S. Sen Lindsey Graham…”
Anyone with the monumentally bad judgment to ever think that a federally convicted drug dealer/supplier would ever emerge as a credible anything in politics is, well, deluded at best.
But, you showed that same kind of bad judgment about Mark Sanford, didn’t you?
That’s what happens when the pathologically rigidly ideological pick candidates based on how pathologically rigid their ideology is, rather than what can be learned about them from knowledge of their lives and careers and the ethics with which they have conducted same.

? October 23, 2014 at 1:06 pm

Does Mark Sanford still harbor Oval Office ambitions as his soul mate maintained, and, did he purposely maneuver her off the playing field hoping the voters would have amnesia by 2016?

Squishy123 October 23, 2014 at 1:53 pm

What do the other bloggers think of Will?

Brad Warthen: “And Will — well, Will Folks has a tendency to see everybody he doesn’t
like or agree with as a crook or something worse, and to say so. Like
you, he always assumes the worst. His being right in this case is sort
of like the accuracy of a stopped watch.”

12:37 comment by Brad



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