Tuesday, April 24, 2001
Only an ethical system has room for outrageThe Star-Bulletin's Monday editorial ("Sometimes outrage is the right reaction") was well-written and well-meaning, but why the "outrage?"
You live in a state that allows a Honolulu City Councilwoman to use campaign funds for personal use and then in some twisted logic allows her to misuse even more campaign funds to pay a fine that seems to be administered by a non-judicial, probably illegal, process that circumvents the true judicial process.
Apparently this is the extent of the punishment when the mayor issues shame on those who want her removed from office. He says, "Why kick her when she is down?"
We have no ethics in this state. Why should you be allowed to have outrage?
Arnold Van Fossen
[Quotables]"People don't have roosters in their backyard unless they have a purpose." Annette Yamaguchi,
Chairwoman of the Waipahu Neighborhood Board, on the town's large population of fighting roosters that have created a noise problem with constant crowing.
"It absolutely has to do with funding weapons programs. They compete like crazy with the other branches (of the military)." Eugene R. Fidell,
A military justice authority, on the Navy's continued commitment to its distinguished visitors program in the aftermath of the U.S.S. Greeneville's collision with a Japanese fishing vessel. The U.S. submarine had 16 civilian guests aboard when the fatal accident occurred.
Raise teachers' pay; cut arts, law schoolSince Gov. Ben Cayetano stated that our government is not able to afford the pay increase that teachers may deserve, our governor and legislators need to set priorities. Two areas that could be cut are the State Foundation on Culture and the Arts and the University of Hawaii School of Law.
Educating our children to compete in the world's economy for financial survival is more important than financially supporting the various artists. The artists should either support themselves in their chosen profession or seek a private benefactor, not have taxpayers support their passion.
Hawaii has too many lawyers for the size of our population. The constant increase in litigation cases over the years has increased the cost of doing business, which in turn is passed on to everyone, increasing our cost of living.
Our children's basic education should take priority over the artists and those who wish to be lawyers.
Wilbert W.W. Wong
We've traded 'tax hell' for 'education hell'The Tax Foundation has given up its "tax hell myth." According to the Star-Bulletin's April 15 story, the foundation's new report shows that "while inflation caused overall prices to grow 89 percent through the last two decades, the (typical Hawaii) family's tax burden grew only 45 percent."
The unmentioned reason is that the state has failed to fund a major public need -- education. Hawaii ranks 50th in money for schools and 35th for colleges. As a result, college tuition rose more than 600 percent, blocking out very many thousands of local students. During 1999-2000 only 38.7 percent of new teachers were fully qualified, harming countless pupils.
The education policies of the pseudo-Democratic governor must be ended.
Jerome G. Manis
Teens with drums could settle strikeI'm thinking it would be pretty interesting to see who among our legislators is still sending their kids off to school every day during the strike because their children don't attend public school. I think if Ben Cayetano was hanging out at my house with two teen-agers -- one of whom has an electric guitar, and the other, who has a set of drums -- he'd be settling awfully quick.
Matter of fact, I'd like to see a new mediating tool: extreme mediating. Nobody leaves the room, uses the bathroom or sleeps until we get this settled. Everyone would be back in the classroom in about 24 hours (or less, depending on how much water they drink).
As a public-school graduate and parent of three, I'd be very pleased to see these results: Teachers get a raise and are encouraged monetarily to stay in the classroom instead of going into administration; the Department of Education bureaucracy de-centralizes and the do-nothing DOE administrators are weeded out to channel those funds to the teachers and kids in the classroom; principals get the power to rid their school of incompetent teachers.
Now wouldn't that be nice? Get to it Ben and the HSTA, or else you're going to have a couple of budding musicians showing up at your door soon.
>> HSTA Web site
>> UHPA Web site
>> State Web site
>> Governor's strike Web site
>> DOE Web site
ADB projects don't always pan outKarti Sandiya's April 14 column about the aims of his employer, the Asian Development Bank, "to reduce poverty in Asia-Pacific," is puzzling and flies in the faces of all Pacific and Asian countries where the ADB has its nefarious investments.
The Honolulu-based ADBwatch documents the ADB's role much differently regarding projects in Laos, Thailand and Indonesia. One example will suffice: In Laos, an ADB-built dam impoverished displaced communities and further, a drought has made the dam an uncertain source of power.
There are many reasons the ADBwatch will protest nonviolently in May when the ADB holds it annual meeting at the convention center in Honolulu.
Most media may think differently, but the ADB meeting will not help Hawaii.
Only cash will get more people to pollsGrowing up as a Blue Dog Democrat (we would vote for a blue dog as long as it ran as a Democrat), I read with interest the Star-Bulletin's editorial discussion on how to increase voter turnout -- none of which will work.
In order to get people to vote you must either fine them, which is illegal, or pay them. I propose that a state tax credit of $25 be granted for each general election vote in a family, with another $10 for each primary vote. The money saved from not conducting "get out the vote" drives could probably pay for it.
Rev. Moon's views deserve condemnationThe Star-Bulletin's fawning April 15 feature on the disreputable Rev. Sun Myung Moon used the word "tolerance" in the same caption as "updated message of marriage" in violation of all tenets of acceptable journalism.
A religious leader who, by your own reporter's words, spent more than half his two-and-half-hour sermon in the terms of male and female "love organs" is not to be honored, but to be condemned.
How would we react to spying off our coast?Our spy plane crew came home as heroes. (Or "demi gods," according to an old Webster dictionary.)
We're still irate that the crew was not dispatched home immediately, and still irate that the Chinese dared to blame the collision on the U.S. plane.
What would we do if a Chinese reconnaissance plane were to fly near Washington? Would we wave? Or would half of our armed forces take to the air to give chase? Had a collision such as we caused by being near China occurred on our soil, I suspect that the Chinese would be incarcerated for quite a while. And we might even be bombing Beijing.
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