Name on ballot:
PARRISH, Michael L. (Mike)
State House – District 19
Previous job history:
Previous elected office, if any:
No answer submitted
Please describe your qualifications to represent the people of Hawaii.
I am qualified to represent House District 19 because I am 56 years-old, I have been a permanent resident of District 19 for more than 40-years, and I am a qualified voter in the District. Those facts satisfy the criteria under Article III Section 6 of The Constitution of the State of Hawai’i. Moreover, I am uniquely qualified to represent individuals in District 19 because I am a Non-Partisan. I know the dangers of speaking out against the party. I’ve witnessed enough recrimination, blatant retaliation, ostracization and every synonym thereof. I experienced it personally. I don’t care anymore. I promise to give voice to the silent minority, and many of the silent majority. I will stand up for individuals who will not express their political opinions publicly for fear of reprisal. I expect much reprisal, but it must be done.
I was a city prosecutor and deputy attorney general for more than 25-years. I am intimately familiar with the machinations of our legislative branch. I have drafted legislation. I have submitted that legislation to both houses. I have testified before committees from both houses in support of legislation. I’ve screened legislation for its constitutionality. I am also intimately familiar with the machinations of our executive branch. I have responded to inquiries from governors and their staffers. I have provided legal advice to the executive branch when called upon to do so. I have attended briefing sessions with the executive to discuss legislation I drafted that passed both houses, and which the executive had to choose whether to sign into law. Lastly, I am intimately familiar with the judicial branch, its rules, and the quality of the individuals in that branch who serve the people well.
I’d like to bring government to heel. This is a democratic constitutional republic, not a tyrannical or despotic state. This will begin with the application of first principles. The primary principle is Article I Section 1 of The Constitution of the State of Hawai’i. “All political power of this State is inherent in the [P]eople and the responsibility for the exercise thereof rests with the [P]eople. All government is founded on this authority.”. I intend to lead the charge.
If you wish to see the documents I reference you can find them at the Hawai’i State Legislature website. In the largest blue box on the left you will find a link that says “Browse HRS Sections”. Click the box and you will find the entire book of law there.
What will be your top priority if elected?
My top legislative priority is to submit a bill to amend Section 127A(a)(13)(2) of our Emergency Management act. This law currently enables one individual to determine the fate of 1.4-million individuals. Literally. Our representatives and senators sheepishly conferred their only constitutional authority and purpose to the governor; the authority to make law. In our constitution the executive branch enforces law. As a consequence of that statute our governor, can order individuals to stay home, wear a mask in public, force hardship on a family business that shutters it forever, release felons from prison while simultaneously subverting the restriction of government infringement of every individual’s explicit constitutional right to self-defense, and all are his laws. There is no accountability for any of these transgressions. I will submit legislation that terminates any executive proclamation within 72 hours of its issuance unless: within those 72 hours the legislature convenes in a public forum, accessible to all citizens, debates, and each individual member casts a vote, on the record, to extend the proclamation in one week increments, or let it terminate naturally.
Simultaneously I intend to submit legislation that will require all public high schools to teach students about the United States Constitution, The Constitution of the State of Hawai’i, the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights, and original associated documents. No law, no commentary, no interpretation, just original source information. Let our children learn for themselves the first principles of our country. I talked with a lot of individuals during my quest for nomination. It is stupefying that the overwhelming majority weren’t versed in the nature of our Democratic Constitutional Republic. The minority who were tended to be kupuna. They had a different education. They learned these principles in school, both public and private, and without any agenda, just facts. We should be ashamed to leave another generation civically ignorant and apathetic. Without our children and theirs learning first principles our state of affairs will continue to grow progressively worse, as will our children’s tax burden and loss of liberty from overbearing government.
As Hawaii faces the COVID-19 pandemic, what more can be done to protect residents’ health?
The decision makers need to take look at the real data, take a step back, and do the following:
1. Rely on relevant, timely, original data from reliable sources. No projections or estimates. Just the facts. Period.
2. Stop emphasizing the number of new positive tests and deaths and just post them on the COVID website.
3. Categorize and report causes of death accurately. COVID only deaths. Deaths where COVID is a contributing factor. And, COVID positive deaths where COVID was neither the cause nor a contributing factor. Post this information on the COVID website.
4. Focus on ensuring the best possible protection of our kupuna.
5. Focus on ensuring the best possible protection for our families and neighbors who have underlying conditions that COVID exploits in order to kill its host.
6. Send the children back to school as soon as possible.
7. Open up the economy and our state completely.
Daily death count reports and new positive test numbers have little practical value. No one of a right mind could possibly think that the only individuals who have or had the virus in our Aloha state are those the government and media dutifully report every day. These needless reports cause many individuals to think that the death rate is extraordinarily high when in fact it is not. It would be helpful if our government would post a link to the CDC excess deaths updates on the CDC website. There is a lag, however the data is accurate up to and including its release date. It is the most accurate and relevant information available. Decide for yourself how serious this virus is rather than leaving it to government and media spoon-feed you its collective filtered version of the events unfolding before our eyes.
The overwhelming majority of medical resources, presently at the government’s disposal, should be directed to benefit and protect our kupuna and individuals with underlying health conditions which put all of them at greater risk for poor outcomes. Everyone else should exercise caution by doing their best to avoid contact with kupuna and people suffering from chronic illnesses.
Kids should be in school as soon as possible. As of July 15, 2020, according to the CDC Provisional Death Count, across our entire nation, since February 1, 2020, there have been exactly 188 deaths of people under the age of 24 related to COVID-19. 157 of them were between the ages of 15 and 24 years. According to the CDC, as of July 18, 2020, 3,630,587 individuals have tested positive and 138,782 have died as a direct result of the virus, or as a contributing factor thereof. That puts the national death rate at 3.822%, but only if it is absolutely true that a mere 3,630,587 have or had the virus. Only a shortsighted, dull headed, individual could believe that only 3,630,587 people in this country had or have the virus as of July 18. Even if we rely on our local government’s grim view, and apparent fixation with the official number of positive tests and related deaths, we see as of July 18th that Hawai’i’s COVID death rate is 8.979%. As a matter of fact this ratio is way off because because not everyone has been tested, and most individuals who have the virus are asymptomatic or hardly affected. If our government’s position is that its draconian measures have kept the virus death rate at a mere 8.979%, then we are in big trouble and they all need to go, because an 8.979% death rate is inexcusable in an advanced society. If the government claims that its policies have kept the spread and death rate lower than expected, thereby protecting the citizenry, then the burden rests with the government to prove exactly how and exactly how much. It should also immediately investigate and publish how many individuals died because they did not seek or receive medical treatment because of the governor’s unilateral proclamations. It should, also count how many died from drug overdose, suicide, domestic abuse, or other causes where the virus was not a physiological cause or contributing factor, but proximately caused the death. Our politicians habitually exploit every opportunity to control citizens and curtail liberty in conjunction with tragic events. They are unable to contain their irresistible urges to force us to conform to their ideals and ideas because they sincerely believe we are not competent enough to care for ourselves, and because the power is intoxicating. We the People must get on the same page when it concerns how much latitude we want to confer on the government in so-called emergency situations. Only then can we control our government. In this instance, should there be a spike, we simply cannot let the governor shut the state down again. Our legislature needs to stop hiding, step up, and legislate us around the quagmire that is a shutdown. I will when I’m elected.
What more can be done to help residents who have been economically affected by the COVID-19 pandemic?
First off, we need to take back the language. Rather than calling taxpayer money “federal money” “state money” “government funds”, and the like, we need to call it exactly what it is; our money, taxpayer money. Small businesses shut down by the governor should pay no state taxes for 2020. Individuals who suffered loss of income, and took no taxpayer money, should pay no state taxes for 2020. The legislature should resolve to have the counties suspend 2020 property taxes for individuals who took no money from other taxpayers. For individuals who took and take money from other taxpayers there should be no tax holiday, and they should be required to pay taxes on the income they received from the government’s wealth redistribution schemes. We must immediately and unconditionally open the entire economy and put it where it was before the first gubernatorial orders. Let individuals decide for themselves what protections are in order rather than treating us as one big group of hapless babies with only one solution; more government with more senseless rules. That breeds division among and between the people. We can never let the government divide us which is exactly what it is accomplishing now.
Should public worker furloughs, pay cuts or downsizing be used to help the state deal with lower tax revenues and higher expenses during the pandemic? Why or why not?
No. Our politicians (specifically those who sought and received donations and endorsements from public employee unions) are directly responsible for this particular economic burden they foisted upon we taxpayers. Employees should not be punished because their unions negotiated sweetheart deals with politicians that gave the employees statutory protections which require that they continue to be paid under circumstances such as these. Much like my legislative priority to amend away indefinite gubernatorial tyranny, I will also put forward legislation to amend HRS 127A-(8)(a). That section of the Emergency Management act classifies every state employee as an emergency worker, thereby virtually ensuring that their compensation will not be altered or discontinued during an emergency or disaster. To be crystal clear, the problem is not unions. The problem is power hungry politicians who want contributions and endorsements from public worker unions, while simultaneously bargaining with the same unions over wages and benefits. The amendment I will propose will parse out truly essential workers from non-essential workers. Truly essential workers will be treated the same as they are under the present statute. Truly non-essential workers (generally those who have not been inside an office or behind a desk or physically present at a worksite during these gubernatorial proclamations) will be treated like any private sector employee. That would include furloughs and pay cuts. As a stop gap measure the truly non-essential government employees should have unfettered use of their accumulated vacation and sick leave should they choose to continue to be fully compensated during the then existing crisis. Those benefits will have already been earned under the contracts, and it’s only fair to permit them access to their earnings.
Income related taxes and ridiculous and unnecessary regulations should be cut dramatically in order to increase investment, innovation, economic diversity, and taxpayer revenue. The GET should be increased between one and two percent for a period of three to four years only. The difference will cover much of the taxpayer revenue deficit caused by the gubernatorial proclamations.
Hawaii’s tourism-dependent economy has suffered greatly due to the pandemic. If elected, what would you propose to support and diversify the state’s economy?
I do not agree with your premise. It is the governor and lame duck legislature who caused our economy to suffer. The virus was merely a pretense for our failed politicians’ attempt to have the federal government (national taxpayers) pay down our state (local taxpayer) debt. No doubt there will be pleas for federal taxpayer aid from our executive and legislative branches to obscure their horrible fiscal decisions, particularly unfunded pension liabilities that will exist indefinitely, thereby ruining our children’s future. If there is a different explanation I’m happy to entertain it and change my position if it is fact based and verifiable. Presently there is no other reasonable explanation for this meandering strategy.
I’ll go ahead and beat a dead horse. Taxes should be cut drastically, and so should regulations that are little more than power trips and revenue sources. Get government out of the way and the economy will diversify itself. The state should relinquish a substantial portion of the land it controls and as a consequence lays fallow while the government pours millions of our dollars into so-called affordable-housing plans yada yada. In short: some state controlled land should be relinquished to individuals at no cost and at market price. Hawaiians won’t need to rely on OHA for this. Instead, based on quantum and financial means, kanaka maoli will get tracts and lots in fee simple, with no property taxes. The tracts will be adjacent to tracts sold to private individuals regardless of their race. The property taxes lodged against private individuals who purchase property adjacent to kanaka maoli tracts will fund the infrastructure for both tracts. There is truly no good reason for the state to control virtually 80% of the land, especially when Hawaiians are living in tents along Waimanalo beach and Waianae beaches. Additionally, state controlled land should be let to business ventures at minimal rent, particularly for agriculture and livestock ventures. This is self sustainability. Coupled with serious tax and regulation cuts these ideas won’t scare away individuals who are willing to risk their fortunes to generate more fortune. Those acts coupled with across the board tax cuts and regulatory cuts will cause our economy will diversify itself. The only way government can diversify an economy is by getting out of the way of smart, enterprising, individuals. Presently, government is the only thing holding back investment, innovation, and diversity.
Do you support reforms to policing in Hawaii? If yes, please explain what reforms you support.
Yes, absolutely! I support tripling or quadrupling the number of law enforcement officers statewide. I support doubling or tripling their salaries. There are not enough police given the size of our population. At any given time 1/3 of the police force are on duty. Daily they encounter dozens of individuals for myriad reasons. Sometimes the encounters are dangerous, and other times they are unpredictable and stressful. This stress can cause ordinary people to do extraordinarily bad acts. Police reform can mean many different things, including knee jerk reactions to non-issues that result in worse circumstances than those causing the knee-jerk reactions. If we turn away from the national news and concern ourselves with our home, access local original source information, and act prudently with that knowledge, then we can figure out exactly what other reform, if any, is necessary. Having worked in law enforcement for more than 25-years I now shout from the highest mountain that there is not a problem with our police. There is overwhelmingly good, some bad, and a little ugly. The little bit of ugly can be gotten rid of with more stringent minimal employment standards bargained for directly with police union contracts in exchange for larger salaries. Fewer hurdles to expulsion. The bad can be addressed like any other employment issue and can be coupled with disarmament. The good should be rewarded with more money. That is reform that will work. Punishing all law enforcement for the acts of few is as dumb as punishing any group for the acts of a few of its members. It never helps, it only hurts.
Do you support or oppose the construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope on the Big Island and why?
I support a sale of the land to the highest private bidder. If there are opposing parties they can work out their differences in court. Let’s be done with it already, we have more pressing issues to address. Just look at your questionnaire and its order.
Is there anything more that you would like voters to know about you?
I am grateful for my great wife, wonderful children and grandchildren, awesome friends and neighbors, and that I live in the best place on earth; despite the progressive movement’s determination to destroy our country and state in order to lord over every aspect of our lives. I’m going to do my best to keep family and friends out of the fray. I know that I am going to suffer personally and financially because I refuse to tow the party line. I view it as a binary choice, and the other option is to continue to suffer while evils are sufferable. I’m tired of that. I’d rather abolish the stranglehold that one political party has around the collective necks of 1.4 million individuals. I am a Non-Partisan. I am not tethered to any political party, its platform, nor any plank therein. All three of my opponents pledged their allegiance to a party; one republican, one consumer shopper, and one democrat. All of them pledged their allegiance to a party and every single plank in that party’s platform. I refuse to use the arrows in my quiver to harm or denigrate any individual. All arrows are for the sole purpose of ensuring that District 19 has a representative who is beholden to the will of its residents and my own conscience. I have no regard for any political party and am not beholden to any special interest group. I like my odds. Aloha, and Mahalo. Mike
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