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Changing Hawaii

By Diane Yukihiro Chang

Monday, December 25, 2000

Christmas wishes
for our leaders
near and far

THERE'S been so much excitement in the past few weeks -- given the turmoil of the presidential election on a national level and escalation of the newspaper wars locally -- that I've been naughty this year.

It's not nice, but I missed the big deadline. I wasn't able to complete my Christmas shopping on time.

Therefore, with great embarrassment and self-flagellation, I share the list of gifts that I wasn't able to get for the following individuals, although my intentions were really very good:

For Jeremy Harris, a list of Cabinet appointments that will give him needed strength on the neighbor islands, so the Honolulu mayor can go for the governorship in two years, which is what he would never admit to wanting to do while running for re-election earlier in 2000.

For Mufi Hannemann, failed mayoral challenger, one mo' chance.

For Mazie Hirono, the lieutenant governor who's super nervous about losing the Democratic gubernatorial nomination to Harris, a music box that plays Bobby McFerrin's hit, "Don't Worry, Be Happy."

For Ben Cayetano, a delicious roast (lame) duck from a Chinatown restaurant.

For Linda Lingle, the GOP chairwoman in Hawaii who almost beat Governor Cayetano last year and who's sure to try again for the state's top job in '02, a whole lotta patience.

For Al Gore, a new job.

For Tipper Gore, nothing. She got the best present of all this month when she got her husband back. May they spend many happy years together, out of the public eye, enjoying their kids and grandkids.

For Hillary Rodham Clinton, $8 million collected in small donations from people like me who absolutely DON'T want her to write a Simon & Schuster-published autobiography about life in the White House. Could she please concentrate on her new duties as a New York senator and spare us a self-serving rendition of that scandal known as Monicagate?

For William Jefferson Clinton, a hand-sewn needlepoint sampler, suitable for framing, of the advice he gave to his successor: "Do what you think is right." Did he?

AND finally, for our new president-elect, a slew of support, the benefit of the doubt, and a copy of the revered Tao Te Ching, so George W. Bush can embrace Chapter 54, which reads:

"Meditate on virtue within yourself and you will find the benefit of virtue.
"Use it as the ground for the family and your virtue will last for generations.
"Take it as guidance for the village and the place will blossom for years to come.
"Use it to guide the nation and that nation will create abundance.
"Be guided by it for the whole and it will flood its way all over the world."

Despite my lack of shopping prowess, I hope the former governor of Texas will forgive me and accept my sincere wishes for a happy holiday season.

Heck, now that we have a president-elect, the same sweet wishes to us all. A special mahalo to the thousands of loyal and supportive readers who've stuck with the Star-Bulletin during this tumultuous time.

Peace, joy and love on Earth and in this newsroom through 2001, at least.

Diane Yukihiro Chang's column runs Monday and Friday.
She can be reached by phone at 525-8607, via e-mail at, or by fax at 523-7863.

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