Guy who nabs bad guys deserves more respect
Come on! Why the grandstand play? Was this calculated to embarrass Dog "The Bounty Hunter" Chapman ("'Dog' Chapman and team arrested," Star-Bulletin, Sept. 14
)? Our U.S. marshals should have more respect for someone who is trying to help catch the bad guys. Look at who Chapman brought in three years ago -- a wealthy rapist hiding out in Mexico. At least Dog had the guts to go to Mexico and get the job done.
A phone call to the Chapman home or a knock at the door at a decent hour is probably all that would have been needed to get Dog in to the court house. Good grief, the real criminals are treated better.
Get that Dog, but illegal aliens can stay
While we hesitate or are even shocked at the thought of sending back the millions of illegal aliens in our country, we have no problem in sending a legal U.S. citizen to Mexico
to stand trial for arresting and bringing back a felon? Am I missing something here ?
Chapman family fights crime with compassion
It is an injustice what the law is doing to Duane Chapman
. Chapman is not only a bounty hunter, he tries to help people turn their lives around. He genuinely cares for families who have loved ones taking dangerous drugs and who tend to mess up their lives entirely.
Beth, his wife, can be a tough lady, but she has a heart of gold when it comes to helping people. The team is not only about catching bail jumpers; they are concerned about returning the people to constructive lives. Duane and family pay tribute to God our maker and make him the light that guides them in their dangerous missions. This whole family represents the good every family should have.
I don't use the word "hero" much, but this family represents everything a hero should be judged by. Release Duane Chapman -- the people's hero.
Hurry, there's funding for homeless available
Economic conditions on Oahu are contributing to a lack of affordable housing, and many homeless residents find themselves camping on the beach. It would assist them to provide semi-permanent camping arrangements, with attendant services (child care, education, job training and substance abuse intervention) that would encourage eventual permanent housing. Isn't it time for a public-private, cooperative solution?
I have available short-term, real-estate-related funding that can be applied toward site purchase and control of property for the proposed purposes. Called a 1031 exchange, there are technical rules that limit time availability of these funds until Sept. 18.
Two Leeward properties have been located that could serve as campsite locations. One is across Farrington Highway from a number of campsites.
I am urgently requesting interested agencies and organizations to become involved. If camping facilities and support services on private land is of interest to you or your organization, please pile on before funding expires!
If you're interested or know any organizations that are, please e-mail me at HawaiiHousing@aol.com.
Richard C. Stancliff
Big-rig habit helps keep gas prices high
To all of you who complain about high gas prices, stop whining! You're lucky you don't have to pay what the Europeans and the Japanese are accustomed to. And besides, do you really need your SUV or pick-up truck to crawl along our freeways to get to work?
A smaller vehicle will get you to work in the same amount of time, but at much smaller cost. I'm not saying everyone should buy a hybrid, but there are plenty of smaller, fuel-efficient cars to choose from.
Why should we reduce oil consumption? Sixty percent of our oil is imported, much of it from the Middle East. This means we are funding several unsavory regimes, including Iran, which wants to develop nuclear weapons. Some of the money we pay at the pump goes to terrorists, as some of these oil-producing nations provide money for Hamas and Hezbollah. If the Middle East didn't have oil, I'm sure we wouldn't have troops in Iraq.
Oh yeah, I should mention all the horrible effects our addiction to oil is having on our planet.
Aussie legacy becoming laughable
With all the hoopla concerning the untimely death of Australia's own crocodile hunter Steve Irwin, have we forgotten the original "Crocodile Dundee," Paul Hogan?
Wasn't it Hogan, 20 years ago, who brought the catchy Aussie saying "Throw another shrimp on the barbee" to America? Before him, I thought Australia was south of Detroit. And his terrific movie "Crocodile Dundee"? Now we have the Outback Steakhouse and the Geico gecko picking up the slack. Lame. Whatever happened to the cuddly koala who flew first class on Quantas?
I grew up with Joan Embry and Jack Hanna who placed baby orangutans and tarantulas on Johnny Carson's head and arm on the "Tonight Show." Irwin lived too close to the edge, dangling coral snakes, pythons and crocs inches from his eyes and dangling his 1-year-old son as bait to entertain an audience.
I preferred the lemur relieving itself on Johnny's sport coat.
Fight clubs give youth a place to let of steam
There should be more 808 Fight Factories facilities on each island. Today's youth are more violent and getting into trouble; this would give them a place to go instead of the streets.
For most of these teenagers, fighting has been their way of life. The factory near their communities will bring them into a controlled environment. By joining the fight club, they will have a sense of purpose and bring their skills into the ring instead of handcuffs.
These adolescents don't have goals for their future. Having these factories with the growth of the Ultimate Fighting organizations will give them a great goal to pursue and take the violence off the street.
Therefore, more fight factories around each community should be built. The youth need somewhere to go where they'll be safe from the troubling influences in the outside world.
Candidates Aila, Henkin are out of touch with Lingle's progress
A recent opinion piece by William Aila and David Henkin (Democratic candidates for governor and lieutenant governor, respectively) ignored the well-proven record of results by state government in the last four years (Gathering Place, Sept. 7
). Nearly every initiative they mentioned has already been accomplished under Governor Lingle's administration.
First, Lingle has pushed for substantial and permanent tax relief in the last four years, not just in an election year. Her sheer tenacity resulted in the Legislature adopting modest tax cuts, including raising the standard deduction for the first time in nearly 20 years. This will help Hawaii's working families now and in the future.
Second, Lingle has moved forward with the development of more affordable housing and helping the homeless. During her first three-plus years, the state housing agency approved more than 2,000 units of new housing, and the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands provided more homeownership opportunities than in the previous decade. The governor signed legislation to lease state lands for $1 per year to nonprofit organizations that want to build affordable housing, and authorized the use of low-interest special purpose revenue bonds for this purpose. These solutions will encourage more affordable housing in the long-term.
In addition, her administration is using federal funds to help families on public assistance pay their security deposits and first month's rent.
Lingle also added $40 million to homeless solutions, and during the course of one week, set up the "Next Step" shelter in Kakaako. This facility, which houses 200 adults and 100 children, has helped more than 20 individuals move out and find permanent housing. Lingle is now tackling homelessness on the Leeward Coast, opening a transitional housing shelter at Kalaeloa and an emergency shelter in Waianae by the end of the year.
Third, Lingle's commitment to Hawaii's energy self-sufficiency materialized in her successful "Energy for Tomorrow" program, which has been hailed by experts in the field as leading the nation in setting the stage for alternative energy development. This will decrease Hawaii's dependence on imported oil, revitalize agricultural production and keep Hawaii green.
Fourth, Lingle is focused on directing more resources into the classroom. She released $605 million for school repairs and construction within a two-year period, and will continue to push for 90 cents of every education dollar going into the classroom instead of the centralized bureaucracy. She has lobbied for unprecedented levels of funding for early childhood education, while increasing funding for charter schools and the University of Hawaii.
The facts speak for themselves. Lingle's strong leadership and ability to work with the Legislature and various sectors are moving Hawaii forward.
Director, Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism
Director, Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs
Director, Department of Taxation
Chairman, Department of Hawaiian Home Lands
Homeless Solutions Team Leader, Leeward Coast
Support our country, be an election worker
You can defend the Constitution of the United States!
You don't have to carry a gun, get shot at, leave your job, take a pay cut, travel to a location on the State Department travel-warning list, or eat MREs.
OK, so you do have to get to work at 5:30 a.m. once in September and once in November. And go through basic training. And you have to work two long days. But you actually get paid.
Hawaii needs you to be an election official. Precinct officials' training classes are being held now for the Sept. 23 Primary and the Nov. 7 General Election. You can show the world an example of citizens peacefully making decisions using the ballot box.
Get up right now and go to the phone; dial 453-8683 and tell the Office of Elections you want to enlist or go to www.hawaii.gov/elections.
Menor a consistent champion of seniors
Hawaii's senior citizens have a real friend in state Sen. Ron Menor. In areas from affordable housing to the cost of prescription drugs and health care, he has been in our corner. If you're on a fixed income, like most seniors, it makes a big difference when you can significantly reduce the cost of prescription drugs. Menor co-authored the law that made this happen.
He knows the importance of Social Security and Medicare to older retired people. Menor also has worked hard to cut the cost of gasoline, which takes a big bite out of our budgets.
We need someone in Congress who is a proven fighter on the issues that affect us. Seniors need Menor in Congress.
Case not included in message for the future
Rep. Ed Case's reference to a statement I made more than 30 years ago is misleading because he implies that I support his bid for the U.S. Senate. Citing a passage from former Gov. Ariyoshi's book, "With Obligation to All," Case suggests that his candidacy epitomizes my thoughts on the future of the Democratic Party and its need "to make party members feel that they can use their best energies and judgment and do what they feel has to be done." Since he has portrayed himself as a martyr for change, Case's message to voters is that I should approve of his candidacy. This is clearly not so.
When I made that statement in the early 1970s, I firmly believed, as I do now, that for "the Party of the People" to move forward, we must be open to all ideas and be respectful of everyone's concerns. But once all the points are made, we must balance these concerns with the needs of the whole so that the greatest good can be done. That is when the Democratic Party comes together as a unified force, and that is when great things can be done for all of Hawaii's people.
Robert C. Oshiro
Dems favor insiders ahead of the people
As soon as I became eligible to vote, I have voted whatever the Democratic Party had suggested was best, including voting always for both Sens. Dan Akaka and Dan Inouye. Over the years, I became disappointed with power politics, including the stifling of then-state Rep. Ed Case's efforts to right the Bishop Estate trustees' mess, and now trying to keep him reined in because has the guts to buck the agenda.
Today, it seems the party favors the insiders, rather than the people; convincing through hidden persuaders, rather than open discussion.
I thank Dan Akaka for his years of service, but do not think another term should be a parting reward. We need a thinking, reasonable senator who can vigorously work for ALL the people of Hawaii.
Like the Star-Bulletin, I am endorsing Ed Case.
Both candidates are wrong on tax cuts
The Akaka/Case debate was enlightening. Although Sen. Dan Akaka has a long history in the Senate, it appeared obvious that Ed Case would represent Hawaii more effectively when comparing their performances. However, I was extremely disappointed with both candidates when it came to addressing the deficit and tax cuts.
Both candidates claimed that "tax cuts for the rich" are to blame for ballooning deficits. For this claim to be true, the tax cuts would've had to cause a decrease in the tax revenues collected. The problem for both gentlemen is that tax revenues have soared since the tax cuts were enacted. In fact, the Treasury Department reported that tax collections in April 2006 increased 13.4 percent compared to April 2005 to a whopping $315.1 billion, the second highest level in history! This phenomenon is historically consistent since tax revenues also increased after fellow Democrat President Kennedy cut taxes, and after President Reagan cut taxes. Therefore, the deficit is due to out-of-control spending by both parties that has outpaced the record breaking income tax collections.
Akaka would protect property rights
I quit supporting Ed Case after I learned how he stands on private property rights. In 2005, Case voted against the Private Property Rights Protection Act in Congress.
This bill was launched in response to the outrage which resulted from the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in the Kelo v. City of New London case, which gave local governments free reign to seize people's homes if they felt that it might be good for economic development. In the Kelo case, the City of New London, Conn., mowed down homes to put in a big shopping mall.
I find it hard to believe that Case is so out of touch with his constituents that he would take the side of big corporations over the interest of homeowners. It's a wonder that he didn't learn anything about public opinion in his numerous "talk story" meetings.
I think I'll stick with Sen. Dan Akaka because he'll stick up for the little guy when corporations try to push us around.
Killing Jones Act would do more harm
What is it that people think will happen if we scuttle the Jones Act? Foreign-flag vessels will flock to Hawaii to carry our cargo to and from our island state at discounted rates?
Let's be realistic. These foreign carriers are used to serving major Pacific markets, such as China. Hawaii is a teeny market by comparison. So who do you think will get preference for routes and for cargo space?
Yes, at times lower shipping rates might be offered, to fill unutilized space. But can you rely on them stopping in Hawaii, and charging lower rates on every run?
And how much less can these shippers charge? Eighty percent of their costs are the same as U.S. ship owners (fuel, equipment and shoreside services). They can save money in crew costs, since they could pay a lot less for non-American seamen. There might be some savings in safety and environmental equipment since foreign vessels do not have to comply with U.S. standards and laws.
We'll save a couple of pennies on the dollar, at most, and for what? We'll have ships calling Hawaii that are less safe, less environmentally conscious, our ports will be less secure, and our resident maritime workers could be out of a job.
Robert T. Guard
President, McCabe Hamilton & Renny Co.
Editor's note: McCabe Hamilton & Renny is the state's largest and oldest stevedoring business.
Jones Act exemption great for isle economy
During the course of the debate between Sen. Dan Akaka and Congressman Ed Case, Akaka stated that he supports the Jones Act because it increases employment, sustains the U.S. maritime industry and is essential to the national defense in time of a national emergency. Unfortunately, the senator failed to give any facts in support of his position.
The exemption to the Jones Act permitting NCL America to operate cruise ships in Hawaii was an initiative by Sen. Dan Inouye. This particular exemption has resulted in stellar results. According to the International Council of Cruise Lines, "the cruise industry injected $512 million into Hawaii's economy and generated 12,000 jobs here last year." Marsha Wienert, a state tourism liaison said, "The cruise industry is a vital part of our tourism economy and we are proud to show people the beauty of our state while supporting local businesses."
Case supports exempting all maritime shipping between Hawaii and the mainland from the provisions of the Jones Act. In view of the rather spectacular results garnered by the cruise ship exemption, the economy and employment opportunities can only go one way -- up.
Case needs nobody's permission to run
I have enjoyed all of the banter of the upcoming U.S. Senatorial race. Let's see ... first Ed Case doesn't ask "permission" to run against Dan Akaka.
Second, ex-Gov. Ariyoshi is up in arms that his public statements made some time ago did not have his "permission" to be reprinted. When did public statements, if not taken out of context, become a "need my permission" to reprint?I am going to delight in voting in the primary as a Democrat. To weed out the ineffective individuals is my idea of spending a delightful half-hour. I can hardly wait for Rep. Neil Abercrombie's turn.