Grammy winner warms cold Chicago hearts
"Treasures of Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar" is playing in our Chicago living room to celebrate its Grammy win on Feb. 10. This album is so representative of traditional Hawaiian music that each of us who loves Hawaiian music should be extremely proud of its win. Slack key, Hawaiian language, songs representing wonderful traditional Hawaiian music, falsetto, great artists, great voices ... it is sincere, professional, connecting, inclusive and fun. It conveys the warmth of the people of Hawaii, and is full aloha.
Mahalo and congratulations to all who took part in this album that is truly to be "Treasured."
Lanny and Phyllis Younger
New Lenox, Illinois
Formerly of Hawaii
Gasoline price cap a good stimulus plan
I met Linda Lingle a long time ago on Molokai when she was starting a newspaper. Her high standards impressed me, as did her attitude about Molokai and its people.
Recently Gov. Lingle suggested some type of tax proposal that would have put more money in the people's pockets to help stimulate our local economy. I understand from the newspapers and TV that the Legislature is unlikely to go along with this plan.
However, the governor can still help the people keep more money and help get our local economy moving. She can do this now with the blessing of the Legislature by exercising her power to re-establish the gasoline price cap; this would allow most people in the state to keep more money in their pockets, while keeping the money in the state.
By re-establishing the gas cap now, the governor would be the one to set the standard and give our local economy a boost.
I hope she still has those high standards she showed on Molokai many years ago.
Bed & breakfasts should remain illegal
If I am asked in an opinion poll: "Have you ever stayed in a bed & breakfast?" and "Would you like to stay in a B&B in Hawaii?" I might answer yes to both questions.
But if I'm asked: "Would you like to have a B&B business operating next door to you?" and "How many B&Bs would you like to have in your neighborhood?" I might think more carefully about the question and answer: "No. I would not like B&Bs in my neighborhood."
Tourists are on vacation time and party late while my family gets up for school and work in the morning.
If my neighbor turns her small rental into a B&B, we will have one less affordable rental in our neighborhood and a rotation of strangers rather than a potential new friend.
When a neighbor's B&B home goes on the market, it will sell for more, and I will be assessed more taxes even though I haven't received the income. But if I want to sell my home, it is less marketable because it is next door to a business with potential noise and traffic problems.
B&Bs and transient vacation rentals have become big business in Hawaii. With the exception of a few "nonconforming use" permits, they are illegal in residential neighborhoods and should remain so.
Pauline Mac Neil
Ability to lead matters more than charisma
The wave of support for Barack Obama is certainly understandable. He's intelligent, articulate and charismatic. And hey, he's from Hawaii. What's not to love? And as we saw in American Idol, Hawaii's incredible loyalty and aloha to its own progeny knows no bounds.
But we need to look beyond local loyalty and the media whirlwind that has already declared Obama the winner. Great speeches? Absolutely. Inspirational? Yup. Just like Kennedy, right?
But we need to recall two important facts: It was the young Kennedy who got us embroiled in the disastrous Bay of Pigs. And who escalated our involvement in Vietnam. Youth is not always an asset.
Let's step back from the snowball that is Obama's candidacy. The one candidate with the level-headedness, experience and proven ability to lead us is Hillary Clinton. She understands the terrible state of our health care system. It's not about likability or clothing or campaign comments -- it's about having the ability to lead our country, and Clinton has it. This isn't American Idol and the votes are not yet in; don't let the pundits and pollsters sweep you along.
Hillary Clinton is best qualified to lead our country. And it just might happen -- remember New Hampshire.
Having president from Hawaii would be great
Wow! The next president of the United States could be one of Hawaii's native sons, Barack Obama. Good for us. How cool would that be? What I don't understand is why Sen. Daniel Inouye does not support a locally born Punahou graduate. And, although I belong to Hawaii Government Employees Association, it does not speak for me in its decision to support Hillary Clinton.