Democrats again trying to stymie Lingle
Once again, the Democrat-controlled Legislature is attempting to play politics -- this time with our judicial system. In November, voters will be asked to decide a constitutional amendment to end the mandatory retirement age of 70 for state judges.
This proposed amendment is an apparent attempt to prevent Governor Lingle from appointing judges, particularly to replace Judge John Burns (age 70 in 2007) and Chief Justice Ronald Moon (age 70 in 2010).
It is clear that the Democrats will stop at nothing in their attempt to stonewall the governor. We the people can stop this latest effort. It is another important issue where we need to let our voices be heard and vote against such an amendment.
Support of Jones Act hurts Hawaii residents
Sen. Akaka mocks trickle-down economics, yet defends the Jones Act, which requires all cargo between two U.S. seaports be shipped on a U.S.-owned, built and crewed vessel. Akaka says the act's impact on Hawaii's people is "very little." What? The Jones Act costs Hawaii households more than $4,000 a year (1998 GAO study).
Who likes the Jones Act? Special interests that benefit from this virtual monopoly, shippers, unions and Akaka. He says the Jones Act brings in jobs. He mocks trickle-down economics, yet the $4,000 price tag Hawaii households are forced to pay for Jones Act jobs is worse. George Bush, after Hurricane Katrina, temporarily suspended the Jones Act because it would have dramatically increased Gulf Coast rebuilding efforts.
Lower the cost of living in paradise and vote for Ed Case in the open Democratic primary. Sen. Case will work hard to exempt Hawaii from the destructive Jones Act.
Some candidates follow sign rules
Thanks to Mazie Hirono and all of the other candidates who honored the Outdoor Circle's request to refrain from campaign house signs until after Aug. 9. To all the rest -- we know who you are and will remember.
Hirono is the true successor to our great Patsy Mink and will do great work for us in Congress.
Nancy Bey Little
Accused HPD worker known for her charity
The criminal charges against Sharon Black ("HPD worker charged in record tampering,"
Star-Bulletin, Aug. 11) are outrageous to say the least. This attempt by some to malign her seems retaliatory in nature and will be a huge waste of our tax dollars in pursuing any further.
Black is an exemplary individual: hard working, productive, extremely caring, a role model in our community whom many more should follow. Her heart in helping others is larger than the Grand Canyon.
To now see her name used in this pernicious manner so a few can feel retribution is terribly unfair to her and the community she so graciously helps.
For those of us who have witnessed her unselfish outreach for nearly two decades, I expect all of you to rally behind her to fight these exaggerated allegations against her.
New welfare approach encourages sloth
For once, can the government come up with a realistic plan that will provide a solution to the welfare-to-work idea? We must have a long-term goal to solve the welfare-to-work program, not a Band-Aid to continue to keep it together.
The Department of Human Services announced the "Reward Work" plan (Star-Bulletin, Aug. 8). The intention is to let people who have been on welfare two years or less "to keep job earnings with no impact on their welfare payments." In essence, a person would be receiving two paychecks for being lazy. I am a single parent working and attending college full time. Where do I sign up for welfare?
The state committed "to provide up to $200 a month in rent subsidies for those who have exhausted their regular welfare eligibility but are willing to work at least 20 hours a week." Take a good look at this. To work 20 hours a week is nothing, but add $50 a week, it is an incentive to stay home and sit on my rump. Recipients are being paid $50 a week to put forth minimum effort for an excellent benefit. This is a great attempt at producing a couch potato, not encouraging people to seek employment.
The government should stop enabling recipients to collect welfare, and provide vocational training. If the "ideal payoff is that greater numbers of welfare recipients will seek and keep jobs," then train them for a vocation. For people to seek and remain employed, provide them with a means to an end. The financial investment now would save the welfare system money later. DHS ought to come up with a reasonable solution instead of encouraging individuals to perform just enough to remain eligible in the welfare system.
Student, Hawaii Business College