Sunday, November 10, 2002
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Politicians must unify regardless of partyI was deeply saddened by the negative advertising that came out against the candidates during the general election campaign. I had hoped that every registered voter would let his or her voice be heard in the voting booth. The people in charge will be able to do what they say only if the other politicians back them up.
Everyone must work together, regardless of party affiliation.
Mary Jo Segawa
Let's continue accord of election nightIt is a time of healing. It was good to see everyone -- winners and second-place finishers -- on election night pledging to work together for all the people of Hawaii.
I hope everyone recognizes that the people have suffered under current policies and working together is the right approach.
Perhaps now we can get past these anti-rich and anti-business policies and mindsets in Hawaii. Strangely, we still hear the lament that only rich people will benefit from Linda Lingle's win. After all, we all want to be rich, and I sure would like my children to be rich someday. It would be great to have more rich people -- homegrown and others -- living here, rather than only having rich tourists temporarily.
Who do you think provides jobs and invests in Hawaii's economy? If we want higher-paying jobs and more career choices, we will have to encourage businesses to make their homes here. It does not do anyone any good to send the message that we hate rich people and businesses and will tax the hell out of them and over-regulate them.
Contrary to popular belief, tax incentives and tax-rate cuts to spur the economy would be good even for government workers and government-dependent interests such as social services and charities. Government revenue comes from taxes on income; tax revenue grows when Hawaii's income grows. Income grows when the economy grows. Therefore, government tax revenue grows when we provide incentives for businesses to invest in our economy.
Legislators should cooperate with LingleSenate President Robert Bunda's comment in the Star-Bulletin's Nov. 7 story, "Leaders stress bipartisanship," was more like a threat than a conciliatory gesture of working harmoniously with the new governor.
He said, "The new governor will have to at least now contend with the Legislature, try to at least work with us. If it's a steamroll, if they try to do some things without having to try and partner or at least try to work together, then obviously we're going to have some major conflicts."
These legislators should be reminded, if not forewarned, that on Election Day the people spoke; they said changes are needed. If these legislators block or prevent the new governor's agenda of change, then they (legislators) are part of the problem and should be changed and removed as well.
If the ills of the state can't be cured by changes in the executive branch, we should all consider changes in the Legislature as well. Wholesale changes might be the only way.
Lingle has short time to prove herselfLinda Lingle seems to have a lot to say about the administration of Governor Cayetano and continues to complain about what he has done for the state. I would think that she should have better things to do than complain about his term in office. She has four years to change things in Hawaii, to make things better for those who live and work here.
She has a strongly Democratic Legislature to deal with. She will be put under a microscope, and everything she does will be examined very thoroughly. She has a lot to accomplish and little time to do it all.
In four years, if she isn't able to keep all of her promises, people will complain about her, just like she is complaining now. They will let her know that after four years a Republican cannot handle running the state and a Democrat will be elected to replace her. She will have had her chance, and all her talk will not have gotten the job done.
Lingle can complain and talk change. Can she make change? In four years, we will see.
Lawmakers should try on a new attitudeLinda Lingle has not even been sworn into office and already legislators have adopted the attitude "we will listen to her ideas but do not expect anything to come of them." Already they are gearing up to be another do-nothing Legislature. Posturing. Partisan. Playing politics.
How about a different attitude: Positive. Proactive. Productive.
Lawmakers have the opportunity to do good -- maybe great -- things for the people of Hawaii, all the more now because of someone who will lead the state with good, strong, definite ideas and plans. Why not take this opportunity and make positive changes happen?
Dobelle's endorsement wasn't a wise moveSupporting Mazie Hirono on television during the election?
I guess even Evan Dobelle is allowed to be a dumbbell once in a while.
Blame Clinton? Don't make us laughReasoning that former President Clinton's campaign visit to Hawaii is responsible for Mazie Hirono's loss is so simplistic it would be laughable but for the fact that it comes from respected minds.
In the election four years ago, the Republicans fired a warning shot over the bow of the Cayetano Ship of State that almost hit the target. But Democrats continued business as usual and that arrogance caused last week's loss.
It is no surprise. The Democrats had warnings, which included the early endorsement of Lingle -- a Republican -- by SHOPO, the police union, something that had not previously occurred.
One can be arrogant; one can ignore warnings; one can disregard history -- and one will suffer the consequences.
The Democratic leadership should regroup and take a good look at the person in the mirror. They will not see Bill Clinton.
Kenneth L. Barker
Legislators are already being combativeEven before the ink is dry on last Tuesday's ballots that gave victory to Republican Linda Lingle, the "Bunda Bunch" are throwing lat spreads and pounding their chests with great displays of intimidation (Star-Bulletin, Nov. 8).
I thought government was supposed to be the "people's" business. Governor-elect Lingle, I have your back.
News media ignored other political partiesThis letter is in reference to what is written, reported and told to the people of this state and the nation by all forms of the news media. Our school systems are being graded as to their performance, and I think someone should say something about the performance of the news media. I think they should get a rating that's next to zero.
Example: the coverage of candidates in all categories for election. It was made to seem that candidates from only two parties were running in all the races. There was no mention of any Green or nonpartisan or other candidate.
I was always taught that the news media were designed to keep the public completely informed as to what is going on in the world around us. Because of the political rhetoric going on, an important and controversial race for governor was made two-sided by the news media. With all of the free coverage that the Democrats and Republicans received, I'm surprised that the candidates from the other parties didn't ask for ample coverage.
Well, that's what I have to say; now I wonder how many other people feel the way I do.
Editor's note: The Star-Bulletin published two comprehensive election guides, one for the primary and one for the general election. They contained information on all candidates of every party for state, city and county positions; were available online at starbulletin.com; and were inserted into the Sunday papers on Sept. 8 and Oct. 27.
Cayetano shares blame for Hirono's lossThe real loser in last week's general election was Governor Cayetano. Mazie Hirono truly had little chance against Linda Lingle because of her association with Cayetano.
His unnecessarily ugly behavior set the tone for the last four years of government and not even AJA voters could rally around Mazie, one of their own, adequately enough to overcome Lingle.
All the public employee unions -- after being told by Cayetano in 1998 that Lingle would cut their benefits, if not their jobs -- were hurt more by Cayetano than Lingle would have ever imagined. The teachers' strike remains one of the black marks in Hawaii's history -- an unnecessary demonstration of both arrogance and power on Cayetano's part that did not end until after the 9/11 attacks.
I am a lifelong Democrat and there was no way I could vote for Hirono after she acquiesced to eight years of Cayetano. May history write the real story of Election Day 2002, when the Hawaii Democratic Party reaped what Governor Cayetano had sown.
Lingle must cooperate or face defeat in 2006Governor-elect Lingle fought a good campaign and won the position of the highest office in Hawaii, next to June Jones. My advice to her is to stop attacking Governor Cayetano for his policies. There is no point to criticizing his policies since she already has won. The mudslinging is suppose to stop now.
She has pulled something off that has not been done in 40 years, a Republican victory for the governorship. But Lingle has only four years to do what she said she would do during the campaign. If the changes she promised do not come about, the voters will elect a Democrat again, not that this would be bad since it has worked for 40 years.
It is time to deliver and be mature about it, or Lingle will not receive cooperation from a Democratic Legislature or be re-elected in 2006.
People of Hawaii won't be disappointedHawaii has a Republican governor. The Democrat elite's worst nightmare has come to pass.
No longer will Democrats be able to scare the public workers into submission. No longer will they be able to scare the general public with their rhetoric that Republicans will destroy Hawaii's environment. No longer will they be able to secretly fudge the numbers.
Hawaii has taken a bold step. Now everyone will see how Republicans hold our elected officials' feet to the fire. They will see that Republicans are not bogeymen.
Mahalo, Hawaii, for taking this chance. You will not be disappointed.
Rather than double-up the H1, try this ...I applaud Governor-elect Lingle's attempt to correct Oahu's heavy traffic flow with an overhead highway from Kapolei; however, I believe there is a better, more environmentally pleasing way to do it. The state of Hawaii should ask for federal funds to build H-4.
This highway would extend Fort Weaver Road town-bound through a tunnel under or a bridge over Pearl Harbor and connect with Fox Avenue on Pearl Harbor-Hickam Air Force Base. From there, it would connect with H-1.
H-4 Waianae-bound could branch off Fort Weaver Road, across the former Barbers Point Naval Air Station, and connect with H-1 en route to the Waianae Coast.
A quick look at the Oahu map in the Yellow Pages will show the feasibility of this idea. With construction of a few on- and off-ramps, Fort Weaver Road could easily become part of H-4. To get closer to town, it might even be feasible to bring the freeway across the ocean southwest of the reef runway at Honolulu International airport or across Keehi Lagoon.
Just think how this would reduce the rush-hour traffic on H-1 and make it much more convenient for the many residents of Ewa Beach, Kapolei and the other growth areas on the Ewa plain to get into downtown Honolulu.
Land acquisition would not be a problem, since the government already owns much of it. And the influx of federal funds to build it would do much to boost Hawaii's economy. How could Hawaii lose on this deal? We need to think outside of the box.
Legislators should try to get along with LingleHow much of the Legislature's staff costs were reduced to help balance the budget?
No matter what Senate President Robert Bunda says in public (Star-Bulletin, Nov. 8), it still smacks of partisanship. I'm willing to wager that had a Democrat been elected governor, funding would somehow have been found to restore the cuts in staff and deputy directors.
If the Democratic leadership in Hawaii can't learn to work with the newly elected Republican governor for the good of the people, instead of only for themselves and their party, in 2004 they may find themselves in the situation that Senator Daschle and Representative Gephardt are in today.
A total of 52 percent of the voters didn't vote for gridlock.
Ethical, caring Case deserves Mink's seatAs an independent voter in favor of preservation and improving our governmental system (the best on Earth), I will be voting for Ed Case in the special elections for Patsy Mink's congressional district because:
>> He appreciates the fact that Mink represented all her constituents, especially those disenfranchised for whom she was the only voice. Patsy was truly a liberal in the finest sense of the word. Case has promised to retain her staff through the remainder of the present term.
>> He refuses to be controlled by the good-old-boy network whose corruption threatens his party.
>> He does not belong to the party that fronts for the rich and rapacious. This party has steadily chipped away at the reforms instituted by Franklin D. Roosevelt and now threatens a repeat of the Great Depression, which stole the childhood of most of my generation.
>> As much as I respect Patsy's husband, John Mink, if Case wins both special elections, he will have extra seniority -- extremely important to the strength of Hawaii's representation in Congress.
John H. Cort
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Hawaii's no paradise for gay priestsStar-Bulletin reporter Rob Perez made some startling claims about Hawaii's priests and gay culture in his Oct. 27 "Raising Cane" column, "Gay priests forced back into closet."
He wrote, "Hawaii in the 1980s and early '90s was known among gay networks on the mainland as being a haven for homosexual priests."
Who are his sources?
A half-dozen priests he believes are gay would not talk to him. A member of Dignity, an organization of gay Catholics that opposes church teaching, presents a number of assertions as fact. These assertions are unsupported and hopelessly vague, like this one: "You could see priests at gay-supported functions, either as a couple or by themselves." Who these priests were, whether the Dignity member saw this himself and what a "gay-supported function" is, Perez does not say.
An anonymous attorney "recalled going with a group of openly gay men, including priest couples, to the movies at Kahala Mall." How do we know they were gay? "You could tell," said the attorney.
You could tell?
The rest of the column is more of the same: A flimsy foundation of anonymous remarks by "critics," "gay-rights advocates," "conservative church members" and a "recent national survey."
Are there priests in Hawaii with a homosexual orientation? Of course. And nuns, and ministers, and doctors, lawyers, bus drivers and everything else. Did gay priests once form a free-wheeling, open community that was subsequently "purged" by the current bishop? No.
Spokesman Diocese of Honolulu
Wal-Mart will just add to area's congestionThe Wal-Mart that is awaiting approval by the Planning Commission is going to cause even more traffic congestion if allowed to be built on Keeaumoku Street. The University of Hawaii Environmental Center reviewed the Traffic Impact Report done for Wal-Mart, and found that "the likelihood of excessive congestion is substantial" because of its proximity to several busy intersections.
If Hawaii is going to house the nation's largest Wal-Mart, perhaps our community should have some say in where it goes. Because it will be us that are most affected by the traffic congestion and noise.
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