We navigate from the slimy to the nuclear in our "flASHback" on the week’s news that amused and confused:
» The Department of Education hasn’t decided whether to remove a controversial ground-beef filler dubbed "pink slime" from school lunches. It’s worried that feeding the bodies better will raise expectations for the minds.
» Gov. Neil Abercrombie said the latest contract proposal from the teachers union "is fiscally irresponsible and devoid of reasonable policy," while the union complained that the governor is "not listening to what the teachers have to say." Can we please get some cheese with that whine?
» North Korea is vowing to test a rocket that could eventually deliver a nuclear warhead to Hawaii. It may be the fastest way to end the teachers’ contract theatrics.
» The Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation brushed off City Council criticism that it wasted taxpayer money by publishing a coloring book to promote the city’s $5.27 billion rail project. A comic rendering was the only way to properly explain the city’s financial plan for rail.
» Police motorcycle officers issued more than 500 traffic citations in a five-hour crackdown on the Leeward Coast. HART gets the proceeds to pair the coloring books with bobblehead dolls of Don Horner and Toru Hamayasu.
» Instead of fixing potholes on the road to the North Shore, authorities put up a sign advising drivers to beware of the gaping pukas. Our local government should hang up a sign of defeat already.
» There’s been a lull in Oahu pothole repairs because most of the state’s filler material was sent to Kauai after the recent storms. In the meantime, Oahu’s roads are being paved with good intentions that lead to you-know-where.
» Hawaii got a surprise visit from "The Biggest Loser" TV show. The timing couldn’t have been more perfect; that competition is expected to serve as a model for our U.S. Senate race.
» State Senate Majority Leader Brickwood Galuteria is organizing a Kupuna Power event at the Capitol to encourage exercise and other healthy activities for seniors. It’s never too early for the Democrats to start grooming their next generation of U.S. Senate candidates.
» An online real estate index lists Honolulu as one of only two major U.S. cities where it’s considered more advantageous to rent a home than buy. That way, we’ll have less to lose when North Korea blows us to smithereens.
And the quote of the week … from the Health Department’s Gary Gill on a disease-spreading mosquito that’s threatening Hawaii: "It may have something to do with the feeding habits of the mosquito itself. This aegypti tends to take a little bite out of a lot of people." It’s the same feeding pattern that makes fundraising politicians so noxious.
Reach David Shapiro at firstname.lastname@example.org or blog.volcanicash.net.