Letters for Saturday — November 19, 2005

• Attempted pet abduction

• Information omitted

• Passing lanes aren’t being treated like passing lanes

• Hawai’i buyers getting a raw deal

Attempted pet abduction

Last week someone tried to abduct one of my beloved dogs while she was visiting the neighbors and their dog. Fortunately, that neighbor was able to scare off the would-be kidnappers just as they were picking Chloe up.

Both of my dogs have chips and collars, so whoever was going to do this could not mistake her for a stray. They are in a fenced yard but I do let them out when I get home from work to do their business on the front lawn.

Yes, yes, I know. Never let your pets out of your sight. I consider them to be my kids, and they were in the company of friends at the time. We live on a deadend road off Kuamo’o in Wailua, so anyone who drives in has to do so intentionally.

Have there been other missing dogs in the area recently? Maybe they did’nt actually run away. If you are missing a precious pet I feel for you. My wife and I are deeply disturbed that anyone would try to steal someone’s pet for no good. I will be watching my animals a lot closer from now on, and they will be protected with force if need be. A true pet owner would understand this.

This person is driving a light-colored Jeep Cherokee in the Wailua area. If you’re reading this letter, you know who you are so knock it off! The authorities have been notified. We WILL be watching for you.

  • Stephen Shioi

Information omitted

In the Wednesday Forum, Glenn Micken’s “I told you so” letter extolls the virtues of self-described County “nitpickers” who in 2002, along with Walter Lewis, warned us not to allow the Coop KIUC to purchase the utility.

Like the reporter he admires, Mr. Mickens omits some very significant information from his story. Back then, Mr. Lewis was part of a fourperson committee that, along with the Mayor that appointed them to do so, were trying to persuade us to have Kauai County purchase and run the utility. At the time, it was the only legitimate alternative to KIUC. This is the same County that Mr. Lewis, Mr. Mickens, and the other members of Ohana Kauai are now alternating weekly letters against. These letters contain various forms of name-calling and unfounded, unproven charges of conspiracy and whatever.

They were poor sports and losers then and they are poor sports and losers now. Year after year and cause after cause, these nitpickers and Ohana Kauaians just look more and more like retirees with grudges and not enough else to do.

  • Pete Antonson

Passing lanes aren’t being treated like passing lanes

Sometimes I think all passing lanes on Kauai should be eliminated. What’s the point of having them if drivers don’t use them in a manner that makes passing safe?

For some drivers, calling them speeding areas would be more accurate. These are the drivers who mosey along at 40 to 45 mph then speed up to 55 or so in the “speeding area” so anyone wanting to pass them cannot (or can if they go really fast), then slow back down to 40 when the passing lane ends, creating road rage in those drivers who are stuck behind them. Drivers who want to drive at 40 to 45 mph should move to the right lane in the passing lane area and maintain that same speed so those wanting to go 50 or 55 can pass them at a safe speed.

Then there are those drivers who create the roadblock phenomenon by always driving in the left lane. There are signs saying slower traffic keep right at the beginning of every passing lane area. Some drivers obey the signs and move into the right lane. But others ignore the signs. They like that left lane, so they stay there, creating a situation with one in the right and one in the left going the same speed, hence the roadblock where no one can pass. (This one is really hard for me to understand, because the right lane is much safer because it is farther away from oncoming traffic). More road rage is created in those wishing to pass and sometimes they try to pass anyway swerving in and out to get around the slower traffic in both lanes, or passing after the passing lane.

A solution to these problems is to remove the signs suggesting slower drivers use the right lane and replace them with signs saying the left lane is for passing only, and to have the police enforce it. Warnings could be given for awhile until drivers get used to the new rule. Then tickets should be given for anyone driving in the left lane who is not passing. This way there would truly be a lane for passing safely, in a straight line, no more swerving in and out, and a lot less road rage. This system is used very successfully in many countries and should work well here.

  • Bruce Savage

Hawai’i buyers getting a raw deal

You think we get a raw deal from the oil companies and KIUC? I just received a barbeque repair kit from Grill Lovers in Midland GA. The cost of the 5 lb. kit was $44.99, shipping and handling $29.95. It came US Priority Mail. I received the same kit 3 years ago and only paid $6.95 for shipping.

I recently ordered a small battery from Uniden in Fort Worth. The battery cost $5, shipping and handling $17 Fedex second day.

Kee auto tops shipped me a 14-oz. bottle of convertible top preservative. The product was $14.95, shipping $22.95 Fedex.

I have had many of these experiences where companies charge extra or ship FEDEX for no other reason than they are shipping to Hawai’i. In each case I have asked companies to mail the product, and some do. In the case of the barbeque kit, they still charged $20 more despite the fact that they pack and ship the same way in the mainland and USPS costs the same no matter where you send it in the United States. The supervisor I talked to could or would not give an explanation, only that “this was their policy for Hawai’i, Alaska and Puerto Rico.”

Many companies have free shipping or use the US Mail and charge reasonably, such as QVC and Dell Computers. I have protested to all the companies that overcharge, and for the most part have received total or partial refunds. Regarding the barbeque kit, after the supervisor basically told me where I could go, I called Citibank to dispute the credit card charge. Since they did not want to deal with pursuing $20, they just credited my account. At least this was a monetary if not moral victory.

Bottom line. We get discriminated against because some of these companies have an archaic notion of what or where Hawai’i is. This should be a subject of inquiry for our state government. Individuals should call the companies and protest these overcharges … if you don’t get monetary satisfaction, at least you can yell at one of the supervisors.

  • Tommy Thompson

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