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Letters to the Editor
Tuesday, June 14, 2005
Not guilty ... now what will we do for news?Now that the Michael Jackson trial is over, what are we going to focus our attention on? Maybe now we can focus on the Downing Street memo or Tom DeLay's moral hiccups, or maybe even that war in Iraq. I mean, how important is it that more than 40 million people in this country don't have health care when we have the King of Pop on trial?
Maybe now we could focus on some local issues like traffic, housing, what to do with our garbage or something radical like the local men and women serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. Or maybe, just maybe Brad and Jen might make up and get married again and have a dreamy wedding.
Iolani students shine in economics contestCongratulations go to Iolani School for its excellence in the teaching and development of our future leaders. For the Iolani team to win the 2005 National Economics Challenge is a stunning success. These Iolani students are exceptionally bright young local kids and they proved that recently when they were named the best economics students in our nation. This victory was not a fluke either; the Iolani team and their coach, Richard Rankin, finished among the top teams last year. It's obvious these five Iolani students are very talented, bright young people who are surely looking at great futures.
This victory is shared by Rankin, who put in the extra hours and effort to guide these students through this mental epic. I know Coach Rankin and he has another life. He is an excellent athlete, a tournament winner in tennis and a true waterman with a passion for blue water fishing, or should I say "catching."
Congratulations, Iolani, for your selection of Coach Rankin to work with these economic superstars.
Garish hotels, malls tear at Hawaii's beautyIt was interesting to read Dean Nagasako's letter to the editor, "Landscapes, culture important to tourism" (June 5). In my view, garish hotels of every shape, retail malls of every size and configuration featuring every Gucci-type vendor in the cosmos, rambling military installations, and yes, tons of highway concrete have all taken their toll on Hawaii's former pulchritude rating. Pineapples are even becoming harder and harder to find. From my first trip in 1972 to my fifth in 2000, I have been struck by negative impact of the geometric progression of corporate greed and real estate speculation that have combined to denigrate the vast natural beauty of the islands.
On a related note, it is incomprehensible to me why the French have a magnificent red clay tennis court facility in Paris and host a highly regarded Grand Slam event each year, while Hawaii swims in red clay but might not have one single red clay court available to visiting tennis players. That's a no-brainer for using a natural resource while maintaining the steam in the tourist engine. I'm sure there is a good reason for this apparent oversight, yet I've never received a concrete response from state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism officials. Perhaps they're caught up in the aforementioned geometric progression, too!
Don't let traffic center add to congestionLet's pretend we needed a new traffic center. Wouldn't it be better to use land out at Kapolei Hale? There have been plenty of promises that that area of the island would be developed to take some of the traffic off the roads or at least put it into the Ewa-bound lanes in the morning.
First, constructing a large building in town will further complicate in-town traffic for a couple of years. Second, a building that large in town will just add to the congestion as all the people who will work in the building will now be on the road headed ... where else? ... into town in the morning. And third, instead of getting off at different exits to get to their current offices, employees will all get off at the same exit, clogging those streets further.
In its present ill-thought-out plan, the only thing the traffic center will add to our lives is more traffic. Consider the economic benefits such a project will have for the Leeward community. Go west, young man, go west.
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