Letters to the Editor


POSTED: Saturday, January 31, 2009

Don't blame Pflueger for state's negligence

Please don't use Jimmy Pflueger to cover the wrongdoing and neglect of the state in suspending all dam inspections and emergency flood responsibilities prior to the collapse of the Kaloko Dam. I know the collapse caused the tragic loss of lives, and I am sorry. If the state did its job like it should have, this probably could have prevented the dam collapse.

I've known Jimmy from the 1940s as a friend among many of the motorcycle riders. He was always a close friend among the various ethnic groups, always caring and concerned for the safety of the bike riders as well as others on the road. His aloha was deeply respected by many of us who were close friends of his. He was and still is a caring person, and he is always there when help is needed.

Jimmy is a keiki o ka aina, for sure.

Lehua McColgan

Put former prisoners to work in Hawaii

In reference to “;Gitmo's closing ought to restore reputation of the U.S.”; (”;Our Opinion,”; Star-Bulletin, Jan. 24): The perfect solution as to what to do with the detainees who have been so horribly treated is to move them to a more tranquil setting. I think a facility should be built in Hawaii for these poor mistreated individuals. If their home countries refuse to take them, they could be integrated into Hawaii society and certainly feel comfortable with the aloha spirit that prevails.

It is a shame that the home countries of those approved for release already do not want them. Those who have been released have found jobs back in their country or region performing admirably the tasks of terrorism again and leading the al-Qaida movement. A facility here would assure more jobs for residents and help to improve the local economy.

If this does not work out, then President Obama should see about bringing some of these poor souls to Washington and training them to work in a more pleasant environment, maybe as cooks, custodians or even terrorism experts in the White House! The nations of the world would stand in awe of such a kind and certainly redemptive gesture on the part of our new administration. What do you think?

Tom Shaw
Lillington, N.C.

Just follow directions for green-waste pickup

The Jan. 28 “;Gathering Place”; column by Peter Aiello, “;City green waste pickup might not be so green after all,”; should be taken with a big grain of salt. It certainly isn't an accurate reflection of the city's new curbside recycling program.

It appears Aiello was properly educated about the disposal process for his old Christmas tree. However, his article indicates that he willfully or intentionally ignored the proper protocol.

The city's Refuse Division has spent countless hours educating the public on the recycling program through numerous brochures, news releases and community meetings.

The program now reaches 57,500 homes in Mililani, Hawaii Kai, East Honolulu, Kailua and the North Shore. Of those households, only 6 percent asked for an additional green cart.

Aiello failed to follow instructions by trimming trees into 3-foot lengths and bundling them to fit into the bin with the lid closed. If one green bin is not enough, the city offers additional green bins at no cost by calling 768-3200. For more information on recycling, visit opala.org.

If Aiello had asked for a second green cart, his problem would never have happened. We hope that he will follow simple, basic instructions and have a more pleasant experience during the 2009 holiday season.

Markus Owens
City Department of Environmental Services

Obama supporters will swoon, then choke

The term “;shovel ready”; has been popularized to describe particularly juicy candidates for massive injections of federal pork known by the euphemism “;stimulus spending.”;

If our 44th president finds himself unable to deliver on the massive tonnage of Peter Pan campaign promises distributed like so many lotus blossoms last year, one cannot help but wonder how long it will be before various and sundry cult swoonists of the Obamaniac persuasion—overcome with a belated sense of buyer's remorse—will bitterly declare his administration “;shovel ready”; ... and then begin looking about for the capacious HazMat certified landfill needed to accommodate all the rancid snake oil they suddenly find themselves unable to digest.

Thomas E. Stuart
Kapaau, Hawaii

Keep an eye on certain Supreme Court judges

“;Now women have means to gain equity”; (”;Our opinion,”; Star-Bulletin, Jan. 30) rightfully criticized how “;With the recent addition of conservative Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr., the court ruled 5-4 against Ledbetter's claim.”;

Fortunately, the court's Ledbetter decision was based on misinterpretation of the Civil Rights Act, which Congress and President Obama have now fixed. Unfortunately, Roberts and Alito have led other efforts to selectively lock the courthouse doors.

For example, in the Massachusetts v. EPA case, Justices Alito, Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas joined a Roberts dissent that re-interpreted the Constitution. One more vote would have prevented any court challenges by states and citizens to the Environmental Protection Agency's refusal to enforce the Clean Air Act's global warming provisions.

Moreover, while the result would have banned all such enforcement suits, it would have allowed polluters to file lawsuits against any global warming regulatory safeguards that might cost them money.

Glenn Sugameli
Senior judicial counsel
Washington, D.C.





How to write us

        The Star-Bulletin welcomes letters that are crisp and to the point (~175 words). The Star-Bulletin reserves the right to edit letters for clarity and length. Please direct comments to the issues; personal attacks will not be published. Letters must be signed and include a daytime telephone number.

Letter form: Online form, click here
E-mail: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Fax: (808) 529-4750
Mail: Letters to the Editor, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 7 Waterfront Plaza, 500 Ala Moana, Suite 210,  Honolulu, HI 96813