Letters to the Editor


POSTED: Thursday, September 03, 2009

Isles' reps hide behind AARP

On Tuesday, I received an automated call from AARP inviting me to a telephone conference with Neil Abercrombie and Mazie Hirono (who were apparently in Washington) to discuss the health reform bill that is moving through the U.S. House.

Personally, I am in favor of some basic health reform, but do not agree with some of the House provisions. I am especially concerned with the cost of such a program since most other government programs, such as Medicare, were sold with seriously questionable projected costs.

It struck me that both of our representatives passed up the chance to have a real discussion with their constituents. Instead, they hid behind the AARP (which is sympathetic to the reform proposed by the Democrats). The telephone format assures that there will be no public confrontations making the newspapers or evening news. The telephone format also provided for the AARP to screen questions for the representatives.

Reps. Abercrombie and Hirono: Why won't you stay in Hawaii and hold some real town hall meetings?

Nick Nagel



Obama's flexibility an admirable quality

In reference to the arduous process of change, Barack Obama campaigned on the theme, “;Yes, we can.”;

This process is now unfolding in the congressional and public debates over health care reform, as forces for change and those for the status quo vie. The nation is like an individual at war with himself as evolving realizations of the present grapple with entrenched biases and bogeys from the past.

President Obama has set guidelines, like a preference for a public option, but he has also shown flexibility, like willingness to consider a plan lacking this option. As a change facilitator, Obama has set guidelines, but he has asked Congress as representatives of the voices and interests of the people, to work out the actual plan.

That other change facilitator Abraham Lincoln, who championed “;government of, by and for the people,”; would have done likewise, in guiding the process of American democracy through turbulent times toward change affirming the nation's future.

Dane Lee



Japanese election could inspire Hawaii

The Economist magazine last month noted that the Democratic Party of Japan, which had been favored to win the Aug. 30 election, had produced its manifesto that calls for, among other things, “;a radical shakeup of the system that gives civil servants huge influence over politicians.”;

This begs the question: Are there other governments where such an enlightened approach could be applied to the benefit of all? Oh, wait! Perhaps Hawaii's “;leaders”; will take this as an example. Perhaps they, too, will realize the error of stagnant ways and policies. Perhaps they, too, will use this example to lead us out of our current morass.

What shade of blue shall we all turn, as we hold our collective breath? Naahhhh!

Ron Kienitz



Preserving Ewa land is the correct decision

It's “;no ka oi terrific”; that agriculture has been saved for the Ewa Plain. I grew up around agriculture. My father's parents were rice farmers with a 30-acre rice farm in Waipahu and my mom's parents grew “;lily root”; vegetables in a water farm environment. There was sugar cane around us when I grew up in Waipahu, a sugar plantation town.

I am disappointed that sugar cane fields and pineapple fields have disappeared. Our fight to save the Ewa plain for agriculture is not over yet but I hope it can be preserved as it is the best agriculture land on Oahu.

Frankie Kam






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