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Off the News

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Slom’s up, a party of 1

That state senator wearing the black cowboy hat?

No, no, not Clayton Hee. It was self-styled "Lone Ranger" Sam Slom, the sole Republican in the Senate, addressing his colleagues and visiting dignitaries during yesterday’s opening session of the Legislature. Slom’s message: Government needs to get smaller, spend less and encourage individual achievement, especially since the state has little money.

"We have encouraged an entire generation to shelve their self-reliance and become government dependent," he said. The government listened politely and applauded. After all, with a nearly $800 million budget deficit, Slom had a point. 

Satellite radio? Sort of ……

Yes, those cars equipped uselessly with satellite radios here may finally start carrying programming from Sirius XM Radio Inc. The Federal Communications Commission has issued a temporary permit to Sirius to deliver service to Honolulu.

But the truth is, Hawaii is still not in the "footprint" of the satellite and can’t capture the signal from above. There’s some hope that may change someday, but meanwhile the programming will be piped in some other way and sent out at relatively low power, from a more conventional radio tower.

That means it would be smart to check out how well the broadcast will cover the island before subscribing. If you like shock-jock Howard Stern in your car, better be sure you can hear him. It’s not really satellite radio — yet.

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