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POSTED: Saturday, January 31, 2009

Rail funds belong to Oahu, not state

I was originally against the rail project; I felt the people should decide, and voters chose rail. That's the democratic process. This is America and we should all abide by the decisions of the majority. So I accepted it.

But now I hear our governor and some lawmakers want to take away the rail funds and use them to balance the state budget and use the money statewide. This is wrong and goes against the decision residents of Oahu made, and who are paying the rail tax.

When the Legislature first passed the general excise tax surcharge, all counties were given the opportunity to use the half-percent for their own projects on their islands. They chose not to exercise that option.

So why should we Oahu taxpayers now have to pay for neighbor island projects because there is a budget shortfall? This is unfair to all of us on Oahu, whether or not we voted for rail.

Mike Chang
Honolulu


Dogs' victim, owner share spirit of caring

Diana Furtado is a wonderful emissary of what President Obama invites from our citizenry (”;Victim of dogs' attack regrets owner's loss,”; Star-Bulletin, Jan. 29). She foresaw the potential danger posed by her neighbors' loose pit bulls, and instead of absolving herself from further involvement, she unhesitatingly took preventive measures for the safekeeping of neighborhood children - unfortunately at the cost of her own safety.

And based on their immediate, no-excuses ownership for their pets' actions, the Teixeiras appear to be caring, responsible neighbors. Such that it'd likely be unfair to judge them to be “;bad”; pet owners. Which makes the vicious actions of their dogs so much the more disturbing in their unpredictability.

It seems unjust to kill animals simply acting as they are predisposed, especially having been bred to suit the purpose of man (echoes of “;Frankenstein”;?). However, in the here and now, I reflect upon the eloquent sentiments of Genevieve Teixeira: “;Human life is much more precious than animals, and we wanted to do what is right.”;

Regarding the controversy about the outlawing of certain dog breeds, perhaps our society would function with less intervention by artificial laws if we exercised more common sense, and first thought through consequences of our desires, decisions and actions, on this and other issues.

Jo Ann Nishiki
Honolulu


Government can't stimulate spending

Alrighty, I guess this is what the change in business is all about. Redefine the words in describing bills and actions. Besides the $7-plus billion in the first stimulus package passed two months ago, another $8-plus billion will be passed for stimulus. After seeing what Hawaii will get, I see the change.

The word stimulus in this instance is just another word for either payback or porking the spending. I think things will get worse since the government cannot stimulate much. That lies with the private sector since the interest is growing money whereas government interest often is to spend to appease.

Russell Pang
Kaneohe


Tax cuts haven't fixed U.S. economy

I'm in total agreement with the proposal that all tax cuts be taken out of the current economic stimulus package. As President Obama said: “;We won!”; That is, he has the people's mandate to change the policies that haven't worked.

Virginia Bennett
Honolulu


Nothing fair about Fairness Doctrine

The author of a recent letter entreats us all to bow at the altar of the Fairness Doctrine, a doctrine that is anything but fair. For as long as I can recall, and that is many decades, we as a nation have been subjected to a monolithic print, television and radio media that is dominated by the liberal left. That a few conservative radio hosts are giving the left a taste of their own medicine seems to have liberals apoplectic. Thursday's editorial cartoon is a case in point with Rush Limbaugh being lampooned and quoted as saying, “;I hope he (Obama) fails”; when in fact he said “;I hope his policies fail.”; So do I.

Just have a look at Thursday's front page showing what “;stimulus”; money is being earmarked for Hawaii. Not one thing on that list stimulates anything other than more red ink. It is a toxic stew that will do nothing to stimulate the economy of our state and inexorably sinks our country further into debt.

That Limbaugh and others are bringing this and other pressing issues into the spotlight is healthy and helps put the brakes on a spend-crazy government run amok. As far as fairness is concerned, hey, it's a free country and liberal radio is open to join the competition. Check out Air America, where trouble is, nobody is listening.

Richard Rees
Kapolei


Minor issues again dominate discussion

So here we go again. Our local economy is in the tank. Our infrastructure is bordering on being classified as Third World; cuts are being made to vital services; no government jobs are being cut but, our City Council and state Legislature, in their infinite wisdom(?), decide the pressing problems facing us are:

» texting while driving

» owning pit bulls

» civil unions

» and blah, blah, blah

This is the classic shell game they play every year.

They say, “;Let's put these emotional issues up front and the really important one won't get that much attention. This will ensure we get re-elected. Yeah, that's the ticket.”;

Sadly, a lot of us buy into this while a lot of us stay home on election day. Yeah, I can feel the change.

Jim Fromm
Waipahu

               

     

 

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