Tuesday, September 19, 2000
Hawaii must become two-party stateOur one-party government continues to capture the hearts of our citizens, in spite of our 10-year economic drought, continuing educational disaster, high taxation and cost of living.
We were a national embarrassment with the good ol' boy management of the Bishop Estate, with all of its political overtures.
Yet still, according to last week's Star-Bulletin poll, almost half of the respondents said they identify with the party in power, the Democrats. Enough is enough.
Let us go to our voting booths and prove the poll-takers wrong. It is time for a change.
An old-time saying goes, "When in doubt, throw them out!" Political leadership can improve our quality of life.
Sign-waving is effective campaign practiceHawaii's roadside sign-wavers are participating in a unique exercise of democratic politics. Voters who do not attend coffee hours or neighborhood meetings get to see candidates in the flesh.
Candidates with little funding can get maximum exposure and recognition. How else can a candidate with only one sign "contact" so many voters without spending huge funds for full-page newspaper ads or 30-second TV spots?
Campaign sign-waving is democracy in action.
"The car was losing traction and he was leaning over totally focused on asking me to marry him. It's so Mufi."Gail Mukaihata
WIFE OF MAYORAL CANDIDATE MUFI HANNEMANN
On how her husband proposed to her while she was driving in a rainstorm
"We do not exist in a place that shows...any measure of appreciation for what the university can do in the long run."J.N. Musto
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF THE UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII PROFESSIONAL ASSEMBLY
On how faculty salaries at UH are lagging behind national averages, resulting in serious recruitment and retention problems
Haunani Trask was showing frustrationI disagree with Richard Borreca's Sept. 13 "Capitol View" column. For more than 100 years, the kanaka maoli have faced a racist, white-supremacy-driven situation of having had their country hijacked out from under them by outside forces. It was a far greater wrong than any indignities suffered by, let's say, the 18th-century North American colonists who founded the United States.
Focusing on Haunani Trask's use of a four-letter word on a protest sign is basically saying, "Tsk, tsk, Gen. George Washington used obscene language today in referring to the Redcoats and King George III." Can anyone seriously blame a dedicated Hawaiian leader for being -- after five generations -- disillusioned with the notion that true justice is to be had under U.S. rule in any form?
In this case, Trask represents the Spirit of '76 while your newspaper columnist clearly favors continued colonial rule.
Mililani Trask didn't deserve appointmentI applaud the governor for his toughness in dealing with state issues such the Office of Hawaiian Affairs. He has every right to make appointments in the best interest of the state. Didn't we elect him to make these decisions?
He was right in not selecting former OHA Trustee Mililani Trask to an interim appointment. People who are negative and self-absorbed and who disrespect our leaders should have no part in serving any organizations. They become activists rather than advocates.
Double-deck parking is needed at stadiumI agree with Mayor Harris -- doubledeck the parking lot at Aloha Stadium. You might not be able to go outward, but you can go up.
Parking gates should swing open soonerOn University of Hawaii game days, the Aloha Stadium parking lot should be opened earlier, even if the flea market has to be canceled. Most mainland venues open their stadium lots more than four hours before game time, which relieves the traffic mess.
Disabilities law is being ignoredNow that I am wheelchair-bound due to a disability, I am extremely aware of any lack of access into, out of and around areas that should be accessible to all.
Although the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) recently celebrated its 10th anniversary, people are still kicking and screaming about it, claiming economic hardship and thus not following accepted ADA guidelines.
It's particularly bothersome, though, when new public structures like the Kapiolani Bandstand are designed and built with our money, then must be redesigned and rebuilt to comply with ADA. We are charged big time for this.
Are city or state comptrollers or architects asleep on the job? How about getting it right the first time?
City has deteriorated under Mayor HarrisUnderstanding that A.A. Smyser is writing an opinion column in your Sept. 5 issue does not excuse his supine lack of research into the facts of Mayor Harris' irresponsible and perfidious administration of taxpayer dollars. Here are some facts:
The city is some 800 miles behind in road resurfacing. How are we going to get caught up from the last six years of neglect?As for the mayor's radio show, as a businessman I would rather have Harris' department heads, who earn more than $90,000 annually, doing their jobs instead of listening to the radio.
The city is 950 miles behind in sewer line repairs according to Ken Sprague, director of the city Department of Environmental Services. Estimated cost is over $1.2 billion.
Taxpayers have paid more than $1.2 million in fines to the Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Health because of the Harris administration's neglect of sewers.
The city is unable to make a $43.5 million loan payment on Ewa Villages due in October. Recommendations from the financial audit of 1996 (requested again by auditor in '97, '98 and '99) were never implemented.
Mayor Harris raided $23 million from the HPower plant reserve to pay for operating costs.
Property tax rates were increased in 1998.
The operating budget is $16 million higher than in 1994.
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