The Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP, negotiations are in their final phase and the policy debate is in full swing. Unfortunately, it's shaping up as a debate about trees, not forests; it ignores the central goal of the TPP: to renew the Asia-Pacific trading system and firm up America's role in it.
This spring, President Barack Obama and Republican leaders in Congress want to use an outdated process used to pass the North American Free Trade Agreement more than 20 years ago — a rule called "fast track" — to force through trade deals without a real debate or any amendments.
Tony Green happily points out one of the advantages of voting by mail that many in his community enjoy the most: Once they send in the ballot, they drop off the list of undecided voters that campaign robo-callers care about.
Hawaiian Electric is at the forefront in addressing a vast array of complex issues associated with Hawaii's clean energy transformation, and its goals -- including increasing renewables to 65 percent, tripling distributed solar and lowering customer bills 20 percent in real terms by 2030 -- are among the most ambitious in the nation.
When Cynthia Cantero decided to cut her energy bill by installing a solar array on her home in Ewa Beach, she had no idea she was becoming a reluctant foot soldier in the battle over the future of the electricity system.
Stress perennially rises this time of year for high-school seniors waiting to hear where they've been accepted to college, especially for those seeking entrance to the Ivy League and other extremely selective institutions.
Forty years ago today, the voyaging canoe Hōkūle‘a embarked from Hakipu‘u/Kualoa on Oahu, on a journey to Tahiti; it was the first open-ocean voyage from Hawaii in 600 years using traditional, non-instrument wayfinding.
When Hōkūle‘a entered the water for the first time in Kualoa 40 years ago, it was the beginning of a sail plan that has spanned generations and taken us on a 150,000-nautical-mile journey to reconnect a Pacific Ocean family of many people and cultures that share a history of voyaging and exploration.
Something profound had changed in the cosmos when the Hōkūle‘a first glided across the sands and entered the shimmering waters of sacred Kualoa in 1975 — it had been many centuries since a double-hulled voyaging canoe had graced Hawaiian waters.
Most Hawaii electricity customers are not in a position to own a piece of the utility, as the members of the Kauai Island Utility Cooperative do, and prospects for doing so remain a long way off at best.
Historically, Hawaii residents have felt powerless where electric power is concerned — most are customers of Hawaiian Electric Industries (HEI) subsidiaries, all privately owned utilities. But history has been changing.
The new "yes means yes" policy at the University of Hawaii is but the first step in the cultural shift needed not only to cull sexual predators from college campuses, but to instill healthier attitudes and behavior among even well-meaning young adults navigating an ever-evolving social landscape.
The classic understatement would be that the University of Hawaii Athletics Department has had a rotten year — or two or three — but that gives no cover to Ahahui Koa Anuenue, which has to be there with the money, in good times and bad.
Hawaii is still a long way from having liquefied natural gas as a major component in its energy portfolio, replacing some of the oil used in electrical generation and filling the needs of customers who use gas directly.
As we begin a new year and a new Congress, we have opportunities to accomplish a great deal to build a sustainable future that creates educational opportunities for our keiki, protects Medicare and Social Security for our kupuna, and strengthens our middle-class families for a healthy and secure economy.
As the 114th Congress begins, I look forward to continuing to represent the people of Hawaii in the U.S. Senate. The landscape has changed with Republicans now in the majority, and new strategies will be needed to meet the challenges ahead.
I'm grateful to you — the people of Hawaii — for the privilege of serving our great state and country. We have much to share with the rest of the country, and the world, because only by embracing the spirit of aloha can Congress transcend the partisanship and self-interest that leads to gridlock.
It was a year of mysteries. To list some of the more baffling ones: A huge airliner simply vanished, and to this day nobody has any idea what happened to it, despite literally thousands of hours of intensive speculation on CNN.
Skyrocketing use of electronic smoking devices (ESDs) by Hawaii youth, who "vape" nicotine at much higher rates than the national average, has galvanized anti-smoking advocates who want e-cigarettes treated the same as combustible cigarettes under state law.
Harrison Rue is administrator of the city's transit-oriented development (TOD) program, helping to direct the way the city intersects — and how all the other transit modes connect — with the rail project.
By John Delmar Anderson, Lauren Fay Bruner, Louis A. Conter, Donald Gay Stratton
Today, Dec. 7, as has happened yearly for seven decades, survivors of the attack on Pearl Harbor and dedicated others were to gather at dawn to mark the calamitous event that plunged America into World War II.
This year's theme for the 73rd anniversary of Pearl Harbor is "Preserving the Memory." Some may ask: Why does the preservation of our national memory of December 7th garner such importance? How will the National Park Service at WWII Valor in the Pacific carry out the mission of preserving memory?
When I met Neil Abercrombie in 2009, he asked me to be his deputy campaign manager. I was a person he didn't know, with no experience and, frankly, no interest in Hawaii politics. He put his trust in me, so I put my trust in him.
Neil Abercrombie and I go way back. We first began our journey in the 1960s as University of Hawaii graduate students. When he was a freshman member of the House of Representatives, we worked together to save Operation Manong, a tutorial program for immigrant Filipino students.
The legacy idea as it relates to Neil Abercrombie assumes there really was a legacy but it got lost in the shuffle of political defeat. In this tradition, I would have to credit the departing governor with appointing good Supreme Court justices.
The call for school empowerment has intensified over the past year, as dictates by the federal government and the state Department of Education galvanized some principals and teachers to warn that students will suffer as local communities lose control of their neighborhood schools.
The Hawaii Housing Finance & Development Corp. was created in 2006, when lawmakers decided that a single agency managing both public housing and the development of affordable housing through public-private partnerships was less effective than it could be.
America is a proud nation, where many leave their native countries for the dream of democracy and freedom. Yet, many men and women who risked their lives to protect our freedom and safety are homeless and broken.
The state Department of Health, with the Healthcare Association of Hawaii, has convened a working group to plan how Hawaii would respond in the event of a patient turning up with a history that makes them suspect for an Ebola infection.
The hospitals and long-term care facilities of the Hawaii Health System Corp. (HHSC) provide critical and essential health care services that form the "safety net" for many of our neighbor island and rural communities.
Health care costs are rising and government coffers are shrinking. Who should we protect? Should we protect our poor and indigent and neighbor island residents, or should we protect our government systems like education?
In June, the United Nations' cultural agency, UNESCO, granted world heritage status to the Inca trail system, recognizing that trails can rank alongside the Acropolis in Greece or the Cathedral of Notre Dame in France as some of the world's most important cultural treasures.
There is a public perception that the constitutional amendment for preschool is going to improve our keiki's education and provide a leveled playing field for poor and middle-class children, but in reality, the ConAm to give public money to private preschools is indicative of the poor treatment we give to public schools in the U.S.
The consensus of the five executives who met Wednesday with the Honolulu Star-Advertiser's editorial board: Hawaii's public schools have made remarkable progress overall, and individual schools are generally much better than they're given credit for.
Larry Geller, a longtime community activist for various organizations but testifying before the City Council as an individual, said he "bristled" upon hearing Mayor Kirk Caldwell describing Honolulu as on the "vanguard" for Housing First.
We view the transformation of Hawaii's energy future through the lens of "Faster, Better and Cheaper." For us, faster is vital because of the detrimental impact of high oil prices on the average resident and business.
On Aug. 26, the Hawaiian Electric Companies (HECO) will release much-awaited plans for its vision of Hawaii's energy future. HECO is in good company: States everywhere are taking a fresh look at energy and the companies that provide it.
One hundred years ago today -- Aug. 24, 1914 -- a Hawaiian Electric ad in the Honolulu Star-Bulletin promoted Westinghouse electric fans, asking readers to "count up the minutes and hours lost on account of the heat at the desk that has no fan."
Any agricultural project that is sustainable will be well received. But it is absolutely essential that the definition of sustainability includes environmental stewardship -- both with respect to the land involved, as well as the communities surrounding the land.
Coming off a tumultuous period that saw a group of retired principals publicly, albeit unsuccessfully, seek her ouster, Hawaii schools Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi looks forward to the 2014-15 school year as one that will prove the worth of enormously hard work carried out in public schools over the past few years.
Honolulu leaders have wrestled over what role city government should play in managing Oahu's affordable housing since the city shuttered its Department of Housing and Community Development in the wake of a corruption scandal in 1998.
Fireworks, flags, face painting, family and food is how we in Hawaii celebrate the Fourth of July. Of course, the real celebration is to honor our founding fathers and the 238th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence.
Hawaii's opposition to the death penalty was enacted in law only a few years before it became a state. But it arose from a basic mistrust, originating decades earlier, that government justice can be fair to all the people in its multicultural society.
To the residents of Honolulu in the year 2039: Twenty-five years from the day I write this letter, I am optimistic that you, the citizens of Honolulu, will be living in one of the world's great cities, a city that thrives, because of the strong infrastructure that supports it.
History has shown us that the most worthwhile endeavors are not without challenges or controversy. Hawaii's first metro rail system is no different. For more than 40 years, this rail project has been debated and discussed.
By Benjamin Cayetano, Walter Heen, Randall Roth and Cliff Slater
Even pro-rail optimists would have a hard time describing a bright future for Honolulu 25 years from now. The environmental impact statement made clear that traffic congestion would be substantially worse with rail than it was back in 2014.
Waiting, waiting for cars to move •
Oahu left to the rail and the rich •
An eyesore for 20 miles •
Technology may outpace a train •
Traffic woes need fixing •
A better lifestyle for isle residents and more
The recent revelations over wait times at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs have severely shaken the trust that veterans, their families and the general public should have in the VA health system.
Ongoing concerns about our VA health care system and a recent Access Audit by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs have left policymakers, veterans and the general public searching for answers on how to provide the men and women who have served our nation with the health care they earned and deserve.
Imagine if your son or daughter, or your brother or sister, was sick or injured, and needed urgent care, but couldn't see a doctor for three months, six months, or more than a year. This scenario would be unacceptable to all of us.
For people driving into town from East Kapolei. the line of concrete columns seen from Kualakai Parkway are a long-established part of the landscape. Now the impact of Honolulu's 20-mile elevated rail project will be seen and felt by an ever-growing number of Leeward Oahu residents.
How parents talk to their children has a huge impact on whether the kids believe that their intelligence, talent and ability can grow with hard work. Instilling this "growth mindset" has lifelong benefits, just as the pitfalls of a failure-fearing, challenge-averse "fixed mindset" also linger.
Why does one 4-year-old try again and again to solve the toughest puzzle in the toybox, while another refuses to attempt the task even once? Why does a talented young athlete resist the practice that would take him from good to great?
The Compact of Free Association (COFA) comprise a series of treaties between the United States and three countries: the Federated States of Micronesia (Yap, Chuuk, Pohnpei and Kosrae), the Republic of Palau and the Republic of the Marshall Islands.
The Hatfields and the McCoys. Mention either of these families and thoughts of unpardonable sins, generational grievances, and collateral damage come to mind. But despite all that had happened between these two families, at some point, peace was finally restored.
As our community works together to raise awareness of the heartbreaking results of child abuse during Prevent Child Abuse Month in April, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser is bringing to light how important it is to be vigilant and persistent in reporting suspected abuse and neglect.
Recently there have been several stories about children who were killed while in the care of adults who should have been protecting them. It appears that in two of these cases the parents were overwhelmed, and didn't have the knowledge and skills necessary to care for these children.
Each year, April is Child Abuse Prevention Awareness Month and this serves as a reminder of our nation's need to focus on healthy child development. Given our nation's rank in child well-being according to UNICEF, we need to focus extra hard this year.
Whoever it was that coined the moniker "The Forbidden Island" to describe Niihau, the label stuck and an air of mystery has hung over the privately owned island ever since. But mysteries soon run up against modern realities.
There are no paved roads, no cars, no stores and that's only the start of what makes "The Forbidden Island" distinct. Niihau is home to about 130 permanent inhabitants, nearly all of whom are Native Hawaiians, speaking a dialect of Hawaiian as their first language.