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Letters to the Editor
Monday, March 21, 2005
Don't undo projects that beautify cityI was shocked to read the Star-Bulletin's story about Mayor Hannemann's plans to dismantle so many of the recent projects that have made Honolulu, and particularly Waikiki, a much more beautiful city and tourist destination (Star-Bulletin, March 13).
How can a man who claimed to be such a visionary during the election be so short sighted about the benefits of making Honolulu a more inviting place for everyone, especially our tourists. A recent article in the Los Angeles Times pointed to a singular fact drawing tourists to Honolulu - it is now a beautifully kept city, a place to stay and not a stop-over to the neighbor islands.
Hannemann's doing what he promisedI note a gradual proliferation of "former" Mufi Hannemann supporters reporting that they regret that they voted for the current mayor.
What I'd like to know is where were the voters when Hannemann told everyone that the guide for city expenditures will be,"Do we need it; can we afford it; and can we maintain it?" When priorities go toward resurfacing over landscaping, city sewer repair and replacement over Brunch on the Beach, and cancelled projects instead of those that last perpetually and never get completed, some residents feel the pain of rude awakening.
If you remember Hannemann from back in 1986, he's made saying "no" a cornerstone of his political career. It should be remembered that both Duke Bainum and Hannemann said they would not seek the governorship in 2006.
It also should be remembered that Hannemann as well as scores of other prominent politicians opted out of the special election and the regular election for the Second Congressional District in 2002. Indeed, now Hannemann is a more viable candidate for Congress, but I take him at word that he intends to stay in Honolulu and grow with this office.
Our town is too small and close knit to tolerate much more negative campaigning. A political career should not be based on tearing down, but on building. I personally would like to give Hannemann a longer honeymoon and growing room - well past this first budget cycle which was largely formulated by the former administration. I have the same message for this administration as I did for the last: stay the course.
Arvid Tadao Youngquist
Government secrecy will survive exposureUniversity of Hawaii-Manoa professor Beverly Deepe Keever's written commentary of March 16, on UH doing secret research for the U.S. Navy was well done, but unfortunately, our government will continue its secret acts as it did prior to World War II.
The actions are necessary because the defense and security of the U.S. mainland, with its millions of people, industries and natural resources, take priority over the Hawaiian Islands. As far as our government is concerned, the U.S. citizens in Hawaii are expendable.
Wilbert W.W. Wong
Dearth of Irish holidays is unfortunateWhile I immensely enjoyed the St. Patrick's Day revelry at Murphy's, O‚Toole's and the Merchant Street area, it dawned on me that the Irish don't have enough saints.
Foes of Akaka bill outnumber its fansThanks to Star-Bulletin for its on-line poll regarding the Akaka bill. "Would you like to see the Akaka bill become law?" 1,301 voted "no" and only 436 "yes."
The only poll that really counts is a vote at the ballot box, but politicians will never allow such a vote. They know the results would be similar to the Star-Bulletin poll.
Hawaii's politicians are pawns of the large, wealthy institutions pushing this evil bill. The Office of Hawaiian Affairs, the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands, Kamehameha Schools, Alu Like, Papa Ola Lokahi, etc. want the bill to protect their unconstitutional, racially exclusionary programs.
Politicians mistakenly see ethnic Hawaiians as a monolithic 20 percent swing vote. But most Hawaiians I know, both native and non-native, oppose the Akaka bill. We do not want to splinter our rainbow to create a race-based government.
The Akaka bill allows fat-cat institutions and people trapped in dependence upon them to create an apartheid government without ever taking a vote among all 401,000 ethnic Hawaiians, or all Hawaii's people.
If the bill passes, there is no way to stop Hawaiian apartheid. That's why all Hawaiians, native and non-native, must rise up now to stop this abomination. Please see http://tinyurl.com/5jp5r for further information.
Bill to raise excise tax could still be passedOn March 17 a letter titled, "Let's look at all angles of traffic solutions" contained misleading information regarding the status of tax increase legislation. While it may be true that the Senate version of this bill was shelved, legislators in the House pushed their version (HB1309) through easily and have passed it onto the Senate where it is very much alive and well.
The lack of media attention regarding the Legislature's recent moves to authorize the counties to levy a 25 percent rise in the General Excise Tax is a disservice to the general public.
With the cost of living in Hawaii up, housing and gasoline prices at all time highs and locals being forced to move to the mainland to raise their families almost entirely because of financial reasons, nobody I talk to thinks additional taxes are the answer to any of their problems. We already have the fourth -highest taxes in the nation.
It's important that Hawaii residents know that the Legislature is moving to raise their taxes - a yearly tax increase for the average family of four, of more than $900 dollars.
It would be nice if one or more of Hawaii's media outlets realized that the media market place in Hawaii is starving for someone to shake up and challenge the status quo of majority-party-agenda news coverage/propaganda and get back to the business of impartial, aggressive, get-the-word-out reporting.
Rep. Colleen Meyer
Minority Floor Leader
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