Tuesday, May 17, 2022 |
Share this story
• Ethanol support
• Vexatious Requesters Please VOTE NO on SB 3185
• Iraq torture
Contrary to a recent article, “Lingle likely to approve ethanol bill” (April 26, 2004), Governor Lingle did not have a “change of heart” on supporting energy-efficiency including alternative fuels such as ethanol. Her support has always been consistent, and to say anything otherwise, such as Rep. Hermina Morita has hinted, is a misrepresentation of the Governor’s position.
The ethanol facility tax credit has been on the books since 2000; it is not something new. Since then, however, certain flaws in the original legislation have emerged.
First, as pointed out by the ethanol industry, it was unclear as to what expenditures qualified for the credit. Second, the 2001-2003 Tax Review Commission pointed out that a taxpayer could potentially get back 240 percent of their investment as a refundable tax credit.
In view of these developments, the legislation proposed by the Lingle Administration seeks to fix these problems by clarifying what the qualifying expenditures are and limiting the credit to a still very generous 100 percent of the investment. While the administration’s bills died this session, Senate Bill 3207 currently includes much of what was in the administration’s proposals.
It is therefore somewhat puzzling as to why Rep. Morita accuses the Tax Department of holding up this legislation when that clearly is not the case.
Furthermore, if being “bean counters” means that we are serious about ensuring that the public’s tax dollars are wisely spent, then we will gladly accept that moniker.
Director State Department of Taxation
Vexatious Requesters Please VOTE NO on SB 3185
From the perspective of an activist citizen or investigative journalist concerned with transparency, oversight, and accountability upon which good government depends, this over-broad bill permits discretionary subjectivity to be the primary bases for public records denial without recourse to a contested case hearing.
This bill is aimed at the wrong target. “Vexatious Requesters” are not the problem; “Vexatious Responders” are. This bill would shift the focus of OIP from requiring reluctant agencies to respond to requests for public documents, and instead allow the reluctant responding agencies to redirect OIP’s limited resources and efforts toward making determinations classifying citizens as Vexatious Requesters. The charge that this bill is aimed at the wrong target is not theoretical. I have a concrete example of a Vexatious Responder that misappropriated funds and engaged in a multi year cover up to suppress public inspection of documents. These documents, once obtained, detail board member’s fiduciary breech of responsibility
After a multi-year investigation and almost seven years after the event occurred, I have uncovered public documents which reveal that Ho`ike: Kauai Community Television board members and staff colluded to misappropriate public monies. Other board members and staff engaged in a multi-year cover up intended to hide this misappropriation of funds from the public (and the media). Some of the board members and staff that engaged in this conduct still sit on the board, and continue to be employed by state mandated public funding.
In the public interest, and for the first time since the misappropriation occurred (February 20, 1998), I am making digital scans of the many public documents I obtained through HRS 92F that detail the misappropriation and subsequent cover up. These documents are (and updates will be) made available to the public on the World Wide Web at the following URL: http://kauai.net/helpkauai
Regarding the atrocities committed by American soldiers against Iraqi prisoners of war:
1. It is mind-boggling to hear people excuse such behavior by saying those soldiers “had not received adequate training.” No adult needs special training to know that you just don’t treat people that way. There is no excuse for what happened!
2. It is true that, out on the battlefield, fighting and killing each other is expected. However, once enemy soldiers have been captured, they are no longer armed combatants on an equal footing with their captors, and battlefield rules no longer apply. These Iraqi prisoners had been captured, their weapons had been confiscated, and they were now locked in a prison, guarded day and night, under the total control of the U.S. military.
3. Our already declining status in the world community has now sharply plummeted to a new low-and rightly so. It was arrogant of the Bush administration to invade Iraq in the first place. Now that these abusive, degrading pictures have come to light, it convinces other countries even more that we had no right to go out as knights in shining armor to impose our “values” on another country. How dare President Bush and the Republicans, in all their self-righteousness, have the audacity to talk about bringing American-style freedoms to Iraq, when our own soldiers cannot treat prisoners humanely!
4. Apparently, these actions came to light within our military last fall-yet the public only heard about it at the very end of April. This secrecy is all too typical of the Bush administration. I have a feeling Bush, Rumsfeld, Cheney, et al, would have preferred that such news never see the light of day.
5. Today, Rush Limbaugh, in his unflagging support of anything Bush, had the gall to say this torture of prisoners by U.S. soldiers is somehow related to 9/11. Incredibly, he went on to say that the appalling pictures were merely evidence of a “softening-up technique” used to prepare the Iraqi prisoners for interrogation!
In light of these humiliating pictures and the excuses made by Bush apologists, how can anyone go to the polls in November and support Bush?
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *
By participating in online discussions you
acknowledge that you have agreed to the TERMS OF SERVICE. An insightful
discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments
are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. To report comments that you believe do not follow our guidelines,
send us an email.