Monday, September 23, 2002
Post-primary view points
Advocates of change had better deliverIn the recently concluded primary election, it seems that the overwhelming majority of the votes went to proponents advocating "change."
Now that those races are over, one would hope that these proponents championing "change" are not going to say now that "no change" is what they wanted all along and is best for us.
Now that would definitely be the same old thing. That's when they pass the next test of credibility.
Football and elections don't mix wellIf, as some speculate, the distractions of the Gladiator-like events at Aloha Stadium and El Paso were significant factors in the low voter turnout in Saturday's primary, then on the next election day simply do not schedule football games.
William J. King
Ethnicity shouldn't be a factor in electionDespite all the talk, surveying and reporting about it, I find it difficult to believe that any caring, concerned citizen who is intelligent enough to register and vote (admittedly, a small percentage of our population), would vote for or against a candidate because of his or her ethnicity.
Our nationality is all the same; we are all Americans, regardless of our color, place of birth, religious preference. And no amount of attention drawn to these insignificant differences by the news media or survey firms should affect our vote.
During the past 40 years, I've campaigned for and voted for candidates who were Caucasian, Japanese, Hawaiian, Chinese, Filipino; Christian, Buddhist, Jewish; Democrat, Republican; men, women; tall, short; you name it.
We should all vote for those we believe are honest and have the good of the entire community at heart. Let us not be swayed by other differences that do not matter.
I cringe every time I hear someone talk about being able to attract (or deliver) a particular segment of our population, based upon these "differences." To suggest that Filipinos vote only for Filipinos, or that Catholics vote only for Catholics, or that tall people vote only for tall people, bald people only for bald, women for women, is ridiculous.
Some say that I'm terribly naive to think that it can work the way I think it should, or that others will actually vote for the best, most honest candidate, but I do believe it can happen.
Don't vote for reckless signs-waversPlease, if you see some candidate's sign-wavers obstructing pedestrians and creating a traffic hazard, do us all a favor and don't vote for the candidate. Last week, I saw a Koko Head-bound bicyclist almost get killed across from Kalani High School just because these well-dressed lolos thought it was catchy to lean into the bike lane. Heh! Stay home if you going be stupid.
Some people are just nutty about auditsAudits are expensive. Audits take time. Audits seldom discover major shortcomings that aren't already known. Both Mazie Hirono and Linda Lingle want an audit of the Department of Education right away, if they win. This is common practice so an incoming executive can blame his or her predecessor for any shortcomings.
Our state auditor has already identified many key problems that need correcting. It's sheer nuttiness to conduct more audits when no one pays attention to earlier audits. Why waste taxpayers' hard-earned money on audit fees that will only reveal what we already know?
I say the money would be better spent implementing a good, computerized, cost-effective accounting system. But this would have to wait until a good system of governance (one school board or seven?) is designed and agreed to by every stakeholder.
After the implementation, stakeholders will need time to gain skills using their new tool (timely financial statements) to manage their enterprise cost effectively -- something that's foreign to government entities. I'm confident that government workers will rise to the occasion, but success seems doomed because too much of the tighter-than-a-drum budget will be spent on audit fees. The problem lies at the top: Our candidates for governor are nutty about audits.
Alan T. Matsuda
Mayor's letters aided democratic processI was one of those who learned of the City Council's plan to cut the budget through a letter from the city's economic development office ("Ethics panel rules city's letters were proper use," Star-Bulletin, Sept. 17). Thanks to this notice, I was able to go and testify against the cuts as one of many citizens who did so to try to save projects we believed in.
Testifying before the City Council was the first such opportunity I ever had, but it won't be the last, even though my testimony was taken at 1:30 a.m. I'm glad the Ethics Commission ruled that it was OK for the city to notify us taxpayers, since it increased public participation, got the facts out and saved our future projects.
Mayor Harris was right to let us know. This allowed us to be knowledgeable and involved in the democratic process. I am wondering if a lot of these attacks on the mayor are disguised to discredit him rather than make a point about ethics.
Worldwide Peace Exchange
Dems should reveal budget plans nowPolitical parties that aspire to lead this nation have an obligation to disclose their agenda before an election so the voters have a chance to consider, discuss and debate their positions. This is why the Democrats' refusal to say how they would repeal President Bush's tax cuts is so disappointing.
For months, Democrats in the Senate have refused to pass a budget, balked at taking the necessary measures to cut wasteful spending, and now want to make Americans pay the bill by raising taxes.
Recently, Democrats called for an economic summit after the election, but won't admit that their agenda is liberal tax-and-spend policies. This is highly irresponsible.
What are the Democrats hiding? If they're planning to raise our taxes by repealing President Bush's tax cut, then we have a right to know about it before the general election.
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