Letters to the editor - Hawaii Editor...

Letters to the editor - Hawaii Editorials

There are 55 comments on the Honolulu Star-Bulletin story from Nov 26, 2009, titled Letters to the editor - Hawaii Editorials. In it, Honolulu Star-Bulletin reports that:

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. It's not a Christian holiday, Hawaiian holiday, Jewish holiday or a Muslim holiday.

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Captain Cook

AOL

#1 Nov 26, 2009
Apparently Kamehameha I's "Law of the Splintered Paddle" didn't apply to Hawaiians living on Maui, Lanai, Kahoolawe, Molokai and Oahu. They were not protected from senseless attack by those more powerful. Many of them were brutally killed when an invader from the island of Hawaii attacked their islands in a bloodthirsty land and power grab. Basic civil rights of life and safe passage seem to have been suspended while Oahu natives were getting shoved off the Pali cliffs. The people of Kauai would have met a similar fate except that the great Hawaiian mariners and navigators (or so we are led to believe) couldn't manage to sail the few extra miles to get there. My point? Let's stop pretending that native Hawaiians lived in an idyllic paradise free from violence and hardship. Let's stop advocating a return to a monarchy when nobody else thinks hereditary authoritarian government is a good idea. And let's stop fantasizing that life was so much better when living in the stone age.
John a kamaaina in the UK

UK

#2 Nov 26, 2009
Matthew Kaopio Jr. is wrong

The man ran when the police came to the car. He drove off with the officer holding onto the door. And kept going

Homelessness has NOTHING to do with this issue.

Stupidity does
Oto

Honolulu, HI

#3 Nov 26, 2009
Mufi mouthpiece Mark Oto admits that the .5% GE rail tax applies only to Honolulu and not the other counties.

Though the State passed the GE tax increase and it appears be conform with uniformity, HOWEVER, as applied, it is a "Special Act" and, thus, unconstitutional, because the Hawaii Legislature is prohibited from passing legislation that is not applied with uniformity throughout Hawaii.

Oto may want to consult with mufi hacks polluting the Corp Counsel office before trying to convince us the Rail Fund should not be raided RIGHT NOW for higher and better uses.

Let us assume Oto is right, still, it coming from a mufi appointed hack, renders his opinion suspect and open to question regarding its credibility.
Dman

Makawao, HI

#4 Nov 26, 2009
I wonder if Mark Oto took his medicine before writing his opinion? This is just another Mufi hack holding on to his job. Oto does make a good point for all to consider, if the Mufi wins the Governor's race you can rest assured that all of Hawaii will pay for the rail, not just Oahu. As far as statewide benefits, Ah C'mon Mark it is Thanksgiving not April Fool's day!
Mathew Kaopio Jr

Honolulu, HI

#5 Nov 26, 2009
Mr. Kaopio reminds of Kamehameha's Law of the Splintered Paddle, or Mamalahoa Kanawai, that Kamehameha consecrated at the mouth of the Wailuku river, and named in honor of one of his most favorite and loyal supporter who was a steersman in one of his canoes, killed in skirmishes when Kamehameha was making his way back to Hilo side from Puna.

Kaopio is correct as to the underpinnings of that law, and the reasons and rationale for its consecration now memorialized as a part of Hawaii's history.

The balancing act between the unarguable precepts laid bare before us by Kaopio's excellent letter, is counter-weighed by our HPD officer's lives and safety that, in this situation, were placed in jeopardy, and clearly subjected the officer whose arm was caught in the vehicle, to serious bodily harm, if not death.

We all know there have been incidents where our Officers may have, and were found that did over-react, using excessive force, harming a citizen, homeless or not, BUT ended up costing us Honolulu tax-payers even more money paid to the "victims."

We know of the incident where the crazy homeless lady by Kalakaua and King Street was shot by an officer, when it looked like she really did not need to be shot.

The HPD officer who fired the shots was a rookie, really, with not more than a year under his belt on the clock. That may work against him.

BUT, if you see your partner getting dragged down the street, what the hell else are you supposed to do?
bumpercrop

Ewa Beach, HI

#6 Nov 26, 2009
Kamehameha I's "Law of the Splintered Paddle" was not made to protect criminals, especially todays modern criminals. Unfortunately the modern homeless think they are above the law and can get away with any thing they want. This is evident in our parks, in Waikiki, Chinatown, etc. That old Hawaiian law was made to protect honest travlers as they went on their way, not to flee a crime.

Since: Nov 09

Keauhou, HI

#7 Nov 26, 2009
Mark Oto really has a lively imagination if he believes that only Oahu residents are being subjected to the 1/2% GET increase. All goods that enter the state through Honolulu are also subject to the added tax, regardless of their ultimate destination within the state.
But the part that really amused me was his assertion that Honolulu's rail system will benefit the entire state. Please tell us how.
As a side note, Kiewitt Pacific (who won the bid for the first leg) plans to hire 700 people instead of the thousands predicted by Mufi and his consultants. Further, when Kiewitt built their section of Drum Road for the military, they brought in a lot of mainland talent for the design and engineering work. We should expect that Kiewitt will probably again do that. We should also expect that other construction companies will do the same.
So Mark, thanks for the laugh on this Thanksgiving morning.
BozoNemesis

AOL

#8 Nov 26, 2009
"Finally, Simpson fails to understand that the entire state stands to benefit from Honolulu's rail project. Its construction and related development will create jobs and help the economy, while providing a much-needed transportation alternative." Pure, unadulterated BS from a political hack.'Nuff said...
Marboro

Las Vegas, NV

#9 Nov 26, 2009
D.C. and Hawaii have similar issues on poor student performances, school board and teachers' union. SB readers may be interested in yesterday's editorial in the Washington Post:

Ms. Rhee's court vindication
A judge's ruling on layoffs puts some phony criticism to rest.
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
THE DECISION by a D.C. Superior Court judge to uphold D.C. Schools Chancellor Michelle A. Rhee's dismissal of 388 school employees is more than an important legal victory. It is a refutation of accusations that she manufactured a budget crisis as pretext to fire teachers she didn't want. The unequivocal findings should abash Ms. Rhee's critics and, we hope, help her reach needed accord with the teachers' union.
Judge Judith Bartnoff on Tuesday issued a 23-page decision rejecting a bid by the Washington Teachers' Union to reinstate 266 teachers and other staff members laid off on Oct. 2. The judge ruled that the union failed to prove any of its arguments. She also accepted -- without qualification -- Ms. Rhee's contention that budget cuts by the D.C. Council forced the reduction in force. The judge chronicled the events leading up to the layoffs and concluded there was "undisputed evidence" that the schools budget was sufficient to support existing staff members and newly hired teachers "until the Council reduced the budget by $21 million only two weeks before the new teachers were scheduled to report."
Equally significant was the judge's rejection of the union's claim that the dismissals are subject to arbitration under the city's collective bargaining agreement with the teachers' union. In essence, the judge told the union it could try to fight the layoffs through arbitration but that it would lose. Attorney General Peter J. Nickles correctly termed the decision a "slam-dunk" for the city.
It should not, however, be an occasion for gloating. The layoffs, while necessary, were disruptive -- to the affected schools as well as to the individuals who lost jobs. Now is the time for those who care about the schools to focus on the future. Foremost is for Ms. Rhee and union officials to resolve their differences over the teachers' contract. Negotiations have dragged on for more than two years. Mediation by an outside facilitator has yet to produce results. Union officials who are mulling whether to appeal Judge Bartnoff's ruling would do better to try to reach accommodations that serve their members at the bargaining table. Likewise, Ms. Rhee now has the opportunity to show her willingness to collaborate.
Finally, we hope there is some soul-searching on the part of D.C. Council members who wrongly assailed Ms. Rhee's integrity. They would serve the city better if they joined with her in trying to improve the schools.
BuildRailNow

Waimea, HI

#10 Nov 26, 2009
Dman wrote:
I wonder if Mark Oto took his medicine before writing his opinion? This is just another Mufi hack holding on to his job. Oto does make a good point for all to consider, if the Mufi wins the Governor's race you can rest assured that all of Hawaii will pay for the rail, not just Oahu. As far as statewide benefits, Ah C'mon Mark it is Thanksgiving not April Fool's day!
Unfortunately, Thanksgiving morning is just another opportunity for name-calling and ugly insinuations by the anti-rail contingent, including this person.

Mark Oto has it exactly right: In addition to being the alternative to sitting in traffic that does not now exist, thousands of our fellow citizens will be employed during the project's construction. Surely, that's something even the name-calling crowd can be thankful for......or not.
BuildRailNow

Waimea, HI

#11 Nov 26, 2009
BozoNemesis wrote:
"Finally, Simpson fails to understand that the entire state stands to benefit from Honolulu's rail project. Its construction and related development will create jobs and help the economy, while providing a much-needed transportation alternative." Pure, unadulterated BS from a political hack.'Nuff said...
More name-calling from Bozo. Nothing substantive, as usual.

CALLING ALL ANTI-RAILERS: We've posted this challenge previously and do it again on Thanksgiving. What is your alternative to the gridlock that grips Honolulu commuters twice a day along the east-west corridor in our community? Give us your plan, not your anger and invective. Tell us how you would give commuters a trouble-free, no-traffic-hassle experience twice a day to and from work. It has to be workable -- i.e., no grand carpool plans, which obviously don't work, and no new highways, equally undoable. Just tell us the plan without dipping into Mufi-hating, name-calling jerkness.

So far, you've all failed to provide a workable alternative to sitting in traffic -- which is what Honolulu rail will be. But try....please try ever so hard on Thanksgiving to put another section of your brain to work and give the hate-filled sector a rest.
Hookaumaha

Kapaa, HI

#12 Nov 26, 2009
Captain Cook wrote:
Apparently Kamehameha I's "Law of the Splintered Paddle" didn't apply to Hawaiians living on Maui, Lanai, Kahoolawe, Molokai and Oahu. They were not protected from senseless attack by those more powerful. Many of them were brutally killed when an invader from the island of Hawaii attacked their islands in a bloodthirsty land and power grab. Basic civil rights of life and safe passage seem to have been suspended while Oahu natives were getting shoved off the Pali cliffs. The people of Kauai would have met a similar fate except that the great Hawaiian mariners and navigators (or so we are led to believe) couldn't manage to sail the few extra miles to get there. My point? Let's stop pretending that native Hawaiians lived in an idyllic paradise free from violence and hardship. Let's stop advocating a return to a monarchy when nobody else thinks hereditary authoritarian government is a good idea. And let's stop fantasizing that life was so much better when living in the stone age.
On this Thanksgiving Day ,one should remember the Native people on North America helped the first European settlers survive their initial years. Their actions were humanitarian. Unlike the European motives of exploitation. As for Hawaiians, we had our own Country, and Non-Hawaiians decided We did not deserve this land.
mufi hack

Honolulu, HI

#13 Nov 26, 2009
I see mufi's administration of self-serving, self-enriching opportunists operating under the cloak of "rail," are trying for get holiday pay or double time, for pouring more effluent into the Honolulu community stream of consciousness.

A redundant, worn out "You need rail" by BuildRailWeCantAfford, works like mufi's unecessary rail propaganda polluting the radio and t.v. airwaves.

It's propaganda folks, that assumes regular People are stupid, and will be beaten into submission if you keep repeating the same old lies.

Heck, even the City's own studies prove this thing will not reduce traffic.

In fact, it will be made worse. This rail defeats itself because it is promoting development of more homes, which means more bodies, cluttering an already over-populated area.

BuildRailWeCantAfford, should give it a rest.

Maybe it is April Fools Day, cuz mufi's hack trying to play us as fools.

Fool.
Spock

AOL

#14 Nov 26, 2009
BuildRailNow wrote:
<quoted text>
More name-calling from Bozo. Nothing substantive, as usual.
CALLING ALL ANTI-RAILERS: We've posted this challenge previously and do it again on Thanksgiving. What is your alternative to the gridlock that grips Honolulu commuters twice a day along the east-west corridor in our community? Give us your plan, not your anger and invective. Tell us how you would give commuters a trouble-free, no-traffic-hassle experience twice a day to and from work. It has to be workable -- i.e., no grand carpool plans, which obviously don't work, and no new highways, equally undoable. Just tell us the plan without dipping into Mufi-hating, name-calling jerkness.
So far, you've all failed to provide a workable alternative to sitting in traffic -- which is what Honolulu rail will be. But try....please try ever so **** Thanksgiving to put another section of your brain to work and give the hate-filled sector a rest.
OK, here it is again, a list of alternatives to building rail. The important point to understand is that traffic is a symptom of a more basic problem: people living in one place and working or going to school in another place.

1. Build a real West Oahu campus for UH to take students off the road during rush hour. Everyone knows traffic is lighter when UH is not in session. As an added bonus, Windward students commuting to a West Oahu campus will take H-3, thus easing traffic on the Pali.
2. Build a real second city in Kapolei, not the joke that we have now. That will put more jobs in Kapolei and move those jobs closer to where people live. At the same time put a few office towers or complexes in Mililani.
3. Move more state offices to Kapolei. Many states (CA, OR, WA, NV, TX) do not have their capital in their biggest city. Taking state jobs out of downtown Honolulu and putting them closer to where workers live will also free up traffic.
4. Build affordable high-rise housing in central Honolulu so that people who work in Waikiki or downtown can live closer to their jobs and don't have to commute from Ewa or the Leeward Coast.

All of these measure would put jobs and school in closer proximity to homes. By cutting down on commuting we would ease traffic and remove the need for alternative transportation. Will these things take time and money? Of course, but less than building a twenty mile rail line. And we wouldn't have to pay huge annual subsidies to maintain and operate this fix - like we will have to do with rail. We could even pay for some of it by selling or redeveloping surplus state property in high-priced downtown once government offices have moved to Kapolei.

So, now you have it: a sensible, practical and more affordable alternative to building rail. The one thing this plan lacks is a way for Mayor Mufi to hand out contracts fast enough to get himself elected Governor. That, after all, is what rail is really all about.
Unbiased

Honolulu, HI

#15 Nov 26, 2009
Mr. Build---several alternatives have been suggested. HOT Lanes, toll roads, double-decker freeway, Pearl Harbor tunnel, staggering commute times of public workers, and many more.

All of have been discounted or minimalized or shot down by the group in power--most of the time with very little discussion--in order to advocate what you and your union cronies want.

It's as if the old saying was "Damn the alternatives, full speed ahead!"
BuildRailNow

Waimea, HI

#16 Nov 26, 2009
Spock wrote:
<quoted text>
OK, here it is again, a list of alternatives to building rail. The important point to understand is that traffic is a symptom of a more basic problem: people living in one place and working or going to school in another place.
1. Build a real West Oahu campus for UH to take students off the road during rush hour. Everyone knows traffic is lighter when UH is not in session. As an added bonus, Windward students commuting to a West Oahu campus will take H-3, thus easing traffic on the Pali.
2. Build a real second city in Kapolei, not the joke that we have now. That will put more jobs in Kapolei and move those jobs closer to where people live. At the same time put a few office towers or complexes in Mililani.
3. Move more state offices to Kapolei. Many states (CA, OR, WA, NV, TX) do not have their capital in their biggest city. Taking state jobs out of downtown Honolulu and putting them closer to where workers live will also free up traffic.
4. Build affordable high-rise housing in central Honolulu so that people who work in Waikiki or downtown can live closer to their jobs and don't have to commute from Ewa or the Leeward Coast.
All of these measure would put jobs and school in closer proximity to homes. By cutting down on commuting we would ease traffic and remove the need for alternative transportation. Will these things take time and money? Of course, but less than building a twenty mile rail line. And we wouldn't have to pay huge annual subsidies to maintain and operate this fix - like we will have to do with rail. We could even pay for some of it by selling or redeveloping surplus state property in high-priced downtown once government offices have moved to Kapolei.
So, now you have it: a sensible, practical and more affordable alternative to building rail. The one thing this plan lacks is a way for Mayor Mufi to hand out contracts fast enough to get himself elected Governor. That, after all, is what rail is really all about.
That's a good attempt, Spock, and I applaud your thoughtful, invective-free suggestions -- right up to your gratuitous anti-Mufi comment. Aside for that tarnish, may your post be a model for others who oppose rail.

But as much as every one of these suggestions would help, they don't address the real challenge of future traffic growth that will continue to equate to gridlock. You can build up Kapolei to double its current size and create a campus that puts UH Manoa to shame, and the need for an alternative to traffic congestion between downtown and West Oahu will still exist. None of your suggestions will eliminate that need.

So to rephrase the challenge: Vehicle and traffic growth will increase as Oahu's population does the same, creating an ongoing traffic gridlock situation during and outside of rush hours between downtown Honolulu and West Oahu. That being a certainty, what are your alternatives to sitting in traffic in the east-west corridor? Honolulu's rail project will be that alternative for decades to come, even as traffic congestion continues due to an ever-increasing population.
BuildRailNow

Waimea, HI

#17 Nov 26, 2009
Unbiased wrote:
Mr. Build---several alternatives have been suggested. HOT Lanes, toll roads, double-decker freeway, Pearl Harbor tunnel, staggering commute times of public workers, and many more.
All of have been discounted or minimalized or shot down by the group in power--most of the time with very little discussion--in order to advocate what you and your union cronies want.
It's as if the old saying was "Damn the alternatives, full speed ahead!"
Unbiased....please see response to Spock. Our challenge specifically mentions workable alternatives, and we eliminated additional highways (car-dependent, oil-dependent) from the prospective list. You suggest a Pearl Harbor tunnel -- and you're worried about cost? Simply unworkable. Sure, stagger commute times; it would help.

And I have to hand it to you. Your post was pretty invective-free, except if my pro-rail friends are "cronies," who are the anti-railers? Might they be "cronies," too?

So please try again with the most recently-stated challenge included in my response to Spock. What's the alternative to sitting in the heavy traffic that surely will be a fact of life in the future, no matter how much you stagger commute times?

PS: Notwithstanding your assertion, all the alternatives were exhaustively analyzed. Read the Alternatives Analysis and all its supporting documentation for verification of that fact.
BuildRailNow

Waimea, HI

#18 Nov 26, 2009
mufi hack wrote:
I see mufi's administration of self-serving, self-enriching opportunists operating under the cloak of "rail," are trying for get holiday pay or double time, for pouring more effluent into the Honolulu community stream of consciousness.
A redundant, worn out "You need rail" by BuildRailWeCantAfford, works like mufi's unecessary rail propaganda polluting the radio and t.v. airwaves.
It's propaganda folks, that assumes regular People are stupid, and will be beaten into submission if you keep repeating the same old lies.
Heck, even the City's own studies prove this thing will not reduce traffic.
In fact, it will be made worse. This rail defeats itself because it is promoting development of more homes, which means more bodies, cluttering an already over-populated area.
BuildRailWeCantAfford, should give it a rest.
Maybe it is April Fools Day, cuz mufi's hack trying to play us as fools.
Fool.
mufi hack: please see Spock's post for a lesson on how to conduct your side of the argument without resorting to child-like name-calling off-subject behavior. Spock shows it can be done. Also, please note our responses to Spock and Unbiased. You want to blame the Mayor for increased population growth that inevitably will increase traffic congestion? Traffic will increase along with the population. Maybe you want to cap the population, but that also belongs in the unworkable category.

As for the project promoting development, you're absolutely right -- Transit-Oriented Developed. It's quite a developed concept in cities that have substituted transit for the automobile in planning how their communities will evolve.

Take a break, mufi hack, and think through the myriad of issues. Rail is the only alternative to sitting in traffic congestion that inevitably will be a fact of life in the future. You can name-call all you want and that won't alter this fact. Pick up our challenge: give us a workable alternative to avoiding that traffic. We're still waiting for a workable, realistic, environment-friendly and affordable way to avoid being caught in traffic congestion aside from the rail project. We're convinced there is none, but you're always welcome to try.
alice

Hanalei, HI

#19 Nov 26, 2009
Please use rail money to feed our famileis and to send children to school. Hawaii, under Lingle, has become a third world, impoverished country. We don't need rail;. People are leaving thne west side in droves. Please provide critical services first
Lup Cheong

Kailua Kona, HI

#20 Nov 26, 2009
Unbiased wrote:
Mr. Build---several alternatives have been suggested. HOT Lanes, toll roads, double-decker freeway, Pearl Harbor tunnel, staggering commute times of public workers, and many more.
All of have been discounted or minimalized or shot down by the group in power--most of the time with very little discussion--in order to advocate what you and your union cronies want.
It's as if the old saying was "Damn the alternatives, full speed ahead!"
I have to agree with Mr. Build. The city rejected these so called "alternatives" because they won't work and most of them are a joke. HOT lanes? I'm not going to pay $10 bucks each time I get on the "pay as you go" highway just to get stuck in traffic when I get into or out of town, and neither are you. A tunnel under Pearl Harbor would cost over $10 Billion and only serve Ewa Beach to Aiea. What about all commuters in between, from Waipahu and Pearl city. They won't back track 8-12 miles to Ewa beach to take the tunnel. Neither would commuters from Mililani, who would rather use a park and ride at Pearl Highlands and take rail. And staggering work times for public workers? Now that's rich. The state and city can't even get them to do flex time, or come in early and stay late when needed right now, so what makes you think they'll agree to anything that may inconvenience their current schedules? The union contract would never allow it. Car pools and van pools? We've had them for over 15 years, and how many cars do you think are taken off the road by these carpools and van pools or the HOV lane...LOL!

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