For Tuesday, November 8, 2011
POSTED: 01:30 a.m. HST, Nov 08, 2011
New land agency a threat to democracy
Are we headed toward an oligarchic government here in the islands, one where the government hands itself license to do as it will, negating the checks and balances that have been put in place to protect the people, the land and the environment? People should be incensed by the slightest maneuver that undermines this integrity.
The Public Lands Development Corp. has been given carte blanche to make important decisions as to land ownership and use, irrespective of those laws and regulations it deems unnecessary. This is a travesty of justice, an egregious affair, wresting away from the public its right to partake in the democratic, transparent process that generations have fought to put in place. Can we stand by and say nothing?
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Tall buildings, rail are not island style
Soon we'll be saying, "Remember when we could see sky and ocean?" Then we'll know there are two more certainties besides death and taxes. Good things disappear and a few always benefit handsomely, in a monetary way.
Donald Trump blocked out a big hunk of sky and water toward Diamond Head. Hilton's new building by the Ilikai created a complete wall where Ala Moana curves toward Kalia Road. Two more buildings are planned. When the Wakiki wall is complete, expect the Kakaako wall.
And since when is "density" a good word? People escape density for breathing space, a better quality of life. Who imagines rail when thinking paradise? Rail is a money pit and eyesore, making streets claustrophobic. Buildings 650 feet high around rail stations don't scream island life.
We are losing this island's soul, parcel by parcel, and once lost it cannot be retrieved.
Protesters ignoring needs of 99 percent
It's almost 12 at night, where normally there's just the occasional siren and car driving by; instead, there is the vapid chanting of protesters. This is coupled with people shouting from their lanais: "Shut up! We're trying to sleep!" This only makes the chanting louder.
I understand people's right to protest and I applaud their stamina, but at this point, my roommate and I are trying our best not to hate them and their cause. We're working citizens. So is everyone in our building. Students, office workers, cooks, retail … we are part of the 99 percent, aren't we? So after a long day of work and for many, an early morning, why aren't we allowed to sleep? I don't feel these people are representing anything to do with us, because otherwise they might have more consideration for those of us who are trying to earn a living the best way we know how.
Clinton set example for Cain to follow
So Herman Cain is accused of sexual harassment in the previous millennium. Really?
After President Bill Clinton, what's the big deal?
Government graft is getting ridiculous
The theft of $500,000 from Waipahu High School is no beeg ting, according to our judicial system ("Ex-worker at school accused of stealing $500,000," Star-Advertiser, Nov. 5).
In fact, Denise Hayashi received probation after stealing $68,000 and Janel Echiberi got community service after the theft of $13,000. So Harada's theft is no beeg ting, according to our so-called judicial system.
Warren S. Harada can only hope that he is tried before Judge Randal Shintani, who gave former City Councilman Rod Tam two whole days in jail for the 26 counts against him.
Lucky we live Hawaii!
Don't try to make excuse for stealing
It is appalling that individuals justify theft from grocery stores by saying that "shoppers associate stores with being an acceptable place to munch," and "where I grew up in a small town, it's not seen as stealing for sure" ("Sandwich case raises questions about eating food before paying," Star-Advertiser, Nov. 5) — all in an attempt to make Safeway the bad guy in this unfortunate situation.
To take items off a shelf in a supermarket, eat them and not pay for them is theft. I can understand a person being tired and distracted with a child in the store honestly forgetting to pay, apologizing and trying to make things right. But to justify behavior that constitutes theft as "it's no big deal" and "it's acceptable" is lame and a sad commentary on our societal values.
Electricity rates go up but not income
Bravo for greedy Hawaiian Electric Industries, which has realized a 49 percent jump in profits compared with last year ("Rate hikes fuel 49% jump in HEI profit," Star-Advertiser, Nov. 4).
I'm retired and live on a fixed income, and my total electricity charges for the quarter increased 52.5 percent compared with last year. I've struggled to reduce the electricity usage in my small condo, but my portion of the electric fees for the common areas actually increased a whopping 67 percent for the same period!