Harbin is the one who 'bailed' on us
Can you believe, in an interview with the Star-Bulletin (Sept. 28
), Bev Harbin said she was "disappointed that the governor bailed on me"?
Hello, Harbin. You bailed when it comes to duty, honor, country, integrity, responsibility and honesty. You bailed when it comes to setting an example for the district you represent. You bailed when you failed to understand your past record would prove to be an embarrassment. It was never your decision to make, it was Governor Lingle's. Haven't you seen other people go through similar problems and give the sorry excuse, "I didn't know"? What a proud example you are setting for the rest of Hawaii. Once again Hawaii is the laughingstock of the United States. Give me a break.
Lingle should try Bush method of bungling
Governor Lingle should use the simple technique perfected by her pal G.W. Bush when it comes to the issue of appointing scofflaws
and other unqualified individuals to high positions: Simply wait for a bigger or more tragic news event to draw attention away from the current blunder. It seems to work for Bush every time.
Lingle didn't do right thing from the start
Governor Lingle really isn't fooling anyone. What she tried to do with the appointment of Bev Harbin
should be of concern to anyone regardless of party affiliation.
How can anyone think that Harbin is qualified to represent the voters of House District 28? Until a short time ago, she was registered to vote on the Big Island and only moved into the district and joined the Democratic Party so that Lingle could appoint her. This didn't seem to bother the governor.
Now she's trying to put Harbin at arm's length by first saying she would not have appointed Harbin had she known about her tax problems and only now calling on her to resign.
Why didn't the governor do the right thing from the beginning and select someone from the list of qualified candidates submitted by the district Democrats? This was the same process that Lingle supported when there was a vacancy on Maui and Mele Carroll was appointed. The process worked then. Why was it different this time? Politics, pure and simple. So much for the New Beginning.
Put solar panels on all new homes
I think the state should make solar panels
mandatory on all new construction and give tax breaks for them. Panels could make a huge difference. Many houses are already very successfully off the grid.
Mark A. Koppel
Prisons should better address women's needs
Mahalo for your wonderful series on the women of Hawaii. Your Sept. 22 article "Women often benefit little in a prison made for men
" was right on target. Prison protocols are designed for medium-security violent males and do not address women's pathways to crime, which are entirely different from men's. On Nov. 29, 2002, the Department of Public Safety adopted Administration Policy and Procedures on Gender Responsiveness, Policy Number ADM.01.16, but we have seen little evidence of its implementation. This is sad since Hawaii has one of the fastest-rising female prison populations in the nation -- twice the national average.
Recent statistics from the Department of Public Safety reveal that from September 2003 to August 2005, women's convictions under HRS 712-1243, Class C felony for ice (a small amount of drugs such as residue in a pipe) rose 69.1 percent. That's why the comments of warden Francis Sequeira and Rep. Marcus Oshiro that there are enough programs addressing the needs of women are so shocking. There are currently 50 treatment beds in the Hina Mauka program and 14 beds in the Bridge Program at the Women's Community Correctional Center.
How can anyone think that this is adequate when more than 90 percent of the women there need some form of drug treatment and that women are violating parole (often for dirty drug screens) at almost twice the rate of men?
Coordinator, Community Alliance on Prisons
Estate-tax backers want what's not theirs
Those who say that Republicans are greedy for opposing the estate tax, as in the Sept. 28 letter to the editor
by Alissa Schneider, should take a good look in the mirror if they want to see the true face of greed. Instead of putting together a plan in which to generate their own wealth, they scheme to take away from other families what past generations have worked their entire lives to obtain. Taking money from one family and giving it to another is not only called the Robin Hood Syndrome, it's also known as stealing.
Whether I decide to spend my hard-earned money on myself, donate it to a charity, or give it to my family and friends, that decision should be left for me to decide and not Ms. Schneider.
Water board does work to conserve resource
I was pleased to read the letter to the editor "City should follow its own advice on water
" (Sept. 25), as its author was clearly passionate about the importance of water conservation. We agree that everyone, especially government, can and should do more to conserve our precious water supply. However, we would like to clarify some key points for your readers.
The Board of Water Supply takes seriously its responsibility as the steward of our water resource and is committed to ensuring all water users -- especially large users, like government -- are educated about the importance of conserving water. The BWS works closely with both city and state agencies to address concerns ranging from broken sprinkler heads to watering on rainy days. The BWS has worked with these agencies to implement various water conservation initiatives, including retrofitting city facilities with water-saving fixtures, saving thousands of gallons of water per day.
Water is not a commodity -- it is essential to life. We cannot achieve sustainability of this finite resource alone; we need the help of all water users, both big and small. So we hope everyone will join with us to achieve our mission, to ensure "Water for Life -- Ka Wai Ola" ... for today and tomorrow.
Deputy manager and chief engineer
Honolulu Board of Water Supply
Bush leads for the good of his friends
For a good team to get ahead, it needs a good leader. We should follow good leaders. It's sad but our President Bush is not a good leader and I, as others, don't have confidence in what he does. He does not make sound decisions and is a hypocrite. He says that he doesn't want to kill humans, mainly embryonic stem cells, which are not yet human. But having more research would help humans who have health problems. Then he sends our soldiers to Iraq to kill insurgents, who are human, but not good ones. In doing so, he has let more than 1,900 of our men die after he overthrew Saddam Hussein.
Why are we still in Iraq? Bush said that leaving Iraq would make this world more dangerous. Is that the truth or does he want to keep us there to have his rich friends get richer? Our federal deficit is huge and yet he is spending money like water. We need someone who is capable of managing our funds in a more efficient way and to help our own people.
We need a good leader to follow, not one who is led by greedy rich people for their own purposes. I am not a Democrat or a Republican. I just want to have a fair government that we can trust.
Francis K. Ibara