You can add a possible income tax increase for wealthier residents and perhaps a bump in the state tax levy on imported oil to the list of tax increases that Gov. David Ige is considering to cope with the state budget shortfall. But, nowhere can you find the definition of “wealthier.”
I guess that would be anyone who still has a job.
Pahoa, Hawaii island
Outstanding choice for secretary of defense
I am glad that retired Gen. Lloyd J. Austin III has been confirmed and sworn in as our nation’s new secretary of defense. He had to first overcome the hurdle of getting a waiver from both the House and the Senate, since he did not have seven years’ separation from active duty (“Congress approves waiver for defense secretary choice,” Star-Advertiser, Jan. 22).
President Joe Biden selected him as his nominee due to their working relationship and confidence in him. Austin has an outstanding military record, and served on a few corporate boards since retirement from the Army. He was the commander-in-chief of Central Command, which gives him firsthand experience and knowledge of a very troubled area of the world.
Austin faces tough challenges: Southwest Asia, China, Russia, North Korea and more. I believe he is up to the job and will do well. He’ll also be a tremendous role model for minorities as he is the first African American to be the defense secretary. I wish him well.
Lawrence M.O. Chun
Good sports needed for democracy to survive
How long would any sport last if the losing side claimed the other players, coaches and referees all cheated, and that it was all fixed? And never accept defeat?
I think we all know the answer: The sport wouldn’t last; it would end. Instead, we see the losing side and the winning side shake hands, from coaches to players.
That’s how sports and democracy will last forever.
Kokua Line helps public navigate UI problems
I wanted to make you aware how helpful the Kokua Line column by Christine Donnelly has been during these pandemic times — in particular the information regarding unemployment insurance as well as the other federal programs to help the unemployed.
If not for Donnelly’s information, I would still be floundering in the sea of the unknown created by those in the labor department. Please recognize her valuable contributions.
After Trump, Hawaii GOP must be desperate
I read Shirlene DelaCruz Santiago Ostrov’s commentary, astonished by the timing of the article (“After 70 years of Democratic failings, turn to Hawaii GOP,” Star-Advertiser, Island Voices, Jan. 25). It is ironic that the Hawaii GOP expressed support for QAnon conspiracy theorists in Tweets posted Saturday night on @GOPHawaii. On Sunday night, Hawaii GOP vice chairman of communications Edwin Boyette resigned, saying “the discussion of the Q-Conspiracy was an error of judgment.”
Well, I think the opinion of the chairwoman of the Hawaii GOP is another error of judgment. The GOP has decided that the state’s response to the pandemic is punitive to the citizens? What number of deaths would be acceptable to the GOP before it agrees that we should or must protect the people?
After one year of a failed national response to the pandemic by President Donald Trump, America turned to the Democrats. Now Ostrov wants Hawaii to turn to the Hawaii GOP, the party of Nick Ochs, the leader of the Hawaii Proud Boys, and the QAnon members?
The Hawaii GOP is truly desperate and lacking credibility. Wow!
Former president must be convicted by Senate
Former President Donald Trump should be convicted of sedition by the U.S. Senate and prevented from holding public office again. If he is reelected in 2024, he will continue his seditious efforts to give himself the power to rule for life. It is clear now that that always has been his intention.
No one, including the U.S. Capitol police department, was prepared for the attack on the Capitol on Jan. 6.
If congressional legislators were injured or killed in the fracas by Trump loyalists and right-wing fanatics, our democracy would have been severely harmed.
Let’s not take the chance of a recurrence of the attack. Convict Trump of sedition and prevent him from becoming president again.
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