POSTED: 01:30 a.m. HST, Jun 11, 2011
When I joked a couple of times that the "Big Wind" energy project was named after Gov. Neil Abercrombie, a reader suggested that if I'm going to call Abercrombie "Big Wind," then I should refer to Honolulu Mayor Peter Carlisle as "Little Wind."
I liked that, and it got me thinking that all politicians should have their own wind names. So I consulted my weather glossary and folk song anthology and came up with these, classified by levels of government:
Federal: Sen. Daniel Inouye: "Mighty Wind"; Sen. Daniel Akaka: "Gentle Wind"; Rep. Mazie Hirono: "Light Wind"; Rep. Colleen Hanabusa: "Hesitant Wind"
State: Lt. Gov. Brian Schatz: "Second Wind"; Senate President Shan Tsutsui: "Lost Wind"; Senate VP Donna Mercado Kim: "Whipping Wind"; Senate Minority Leader Sam Slom: "Blustery Wind"; House Speaker Calvin Say: "Lingering Wind"; House Finance Chairman Marcus Oshiro: "Slashing Wind"
City: Prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro: "Punishing Wind"; Council Chairman Nestor Garcia: "Scattered Wind"; Councilwoman Tulsi Gabbard: "Fickle Wind"; Councilman Tom Berg: "Passing Wind"
Comeback Kids: Former Gov. Linda Lingle: "Yesterday's Wind"; former Mayor Mufi Hannemann: "Threatening Wind"; former U.S. Rep. Ed Case: "Desperate Wind"; former U.S. Rep. Charles Djou: "Bitter Wind"
On to a few "flASHbacks" on the week's news that amused and confused:
» Abercrombie's budget director said the governor will likely drain all $117 million left in the Hurricane Relief Fund to balance this year's budget. He'd better hope he's the biggest wind to hit the state on his watch.
» The state is spending $35,000 to install netting on the Capitol to keep away birds that soil the seat of government with their droppings. If only it was as cheap to clean up what the Legislature leaves behind.
» Abercrombie signed a bill that increases penalties for prostitution near schools and parks. The unions objected to outsourcing sex education.
» The Campaign Spending Commission dismissed a Democratic complaint that James "Duke" Aiona improperly coordinated advertising with national Republicans in his unsuccessful campaign for governor. No point beating a dead pachyderm.
» Nearly 14,000 lightning bolts flashed over Oahu in a monstrous thunderstorm. The night sky was so bright that Carlisle and Councilman Stanley Chang could see home from their host-paid junket to Taiwan and China.
» A new study is shifting assumptions on how the Hawaiian Islands were formed. The old hypothesis about a volcanic hot spot is giving way to a theory that the islands were created by Dan Inouye for his fourth-grade science project.
And the quote of the week … from Abercrombie in a rant against paying $4 million to wealthy NFL owners and players to bring the Pro Bowl here: "What do they do with all that? I mean, how many sandwiches can you eat?" With or without his foot in his mouth?
David Shapiro can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or blog.volcanicash.net.