Letters for Saturday – February 04, 2006

• Frustrated veterans give up

• President’s energy reform lacking

• Signs are a blight

• A government for the wiretapping

• Child’s take on Kilauea plan

• Pedantic exhibitionism tiring

• Where are the antlers?


Frustrated veterans give up

This past week the Class Act Group closed shop after 10 years of lobbying Congress for full medical coverage for life for military retirees. In statements made to the public, they summed up their efforts as a good fight, but they know when to call it quits.

Congress over the last decade has given them some attention but ultimately veterans continue to lose ground. Recent efforts by the Bush administration to triple annual Tri-care premiums is likely to renew this debate but the effort will have to be championed by others.

This is not a Bush-bashing commentary, but it has become clear that someone needs to get hold of Rumsfeld and show him how we can fight a war, reorganize or transform the military, and simultaneously maintain the benefits to our older warriors – like Governor Lingle stated to Hawai”i’s citizens concerning tax cuts, “we can have it all.”

Ask any military officer in the service how to cut expenses and they’ll rattle off a hundred cost-reducing measures within a moments notice, so let’s cut the fat and return to veterans the promises made.

  • Noah Hough
    Honolulu

President’s energy reform lacking

President Bush’s track record on energy reform shows a consistent failure of reality to match his rhetoric.

Last year’s energy bill represented a stunning failure of leadership. It did nothing to reduce our dependence on foreign oil or lower energy prices.

While the president may talk the energy independence talk, the reality is that since 2002, the president has allowed energy efficiency research and development spending to decline by 15 percent. And, instead of increasing funding across the board, Bush’s 2005 budget request cut core renewable energy and energy efficiency programs – including a 16 percent cut to biomass programs.

All Americans should scrutinize the president’s latest energy reform rhetoric and look to see whether his newest crusade for energy independence is backed by a full tank of gas or – once again – whether George W. Bush is running on empty.

  • Ken Taylor
    Kapa’a

Signs are a blight

I am so disturbed by the signs that continue to go up on the fence at the park on the corner of Nani and Kaumuali’i Highway (across from KKC).

This is a blight on the community and I do not believe that the fence was intended for a sign board.

Today, I see there is a free-standing one in front now. How much longer will it be before we have a sign attached to the fence for Burger King or such.

This is blighting the beauty of our island.

  • Ramona Goodman
    Lihu’e

A government for the wiretapping

Our current administration views our constitutional rights as quaint concepts which can be manipulated, violated at will or flatly ignored.

This is a government of, for, and by “The People?” Not now! We demand Congress appoint a special prosecutor to investigate and act on the matter of domestic wiretaps. The people are sickened by the acts of those who represent them and the special interests they serve. Justice is the only medicine that can treat this illness. It is not manufactured and sold by corporations.

  • Tyler Barnes
    Koloa

Child’s take on Kilauea plan

Editor’s note: This letter was read by a 10-year-old before the Planning Commission on Jan. 24 during the Kilauea Plan portion of the commission’s meeting in Lihu’e.

The sun slowly sinking. People coming home from work. Kilauea Town slowly calming down when … the afternoon silence is broken by the sounds of jackhammers, construction, trucks reversing, noise filling the air.

A small boy, watching this chaos sadly. Why were they doing this? Why were they building these fancy houses and buildings? No one would be able to afford them anyway.

Let’s leave our small town of Kilauea be. Let’s leave this small island be. Limit the construction. Help stop the traffic problems we have now. Let this island breathe. Let it tell us what’s right. And let us listen.

This island is our home … it deserves our respect. Money won’t solve this problem. Neither will building. But maybe, we can.

  • Tykey Thompson, 10
    Kilauea

Pedantic exhibitionism tiring

The tide of pedantic exhibitionism surged to new heights of absurdity on Monday with the good reverend Oswald’s lecturing an atheist on the true meaning of atheism, while granting a sort of left-handed absolution to said atheist’s late atheist father. Not to be outdone, Vi Herbert proclaims that the flurry of religious arguments on the opinion page are “setting us back in time” and then proceeds to recite a 3,000 year old religious hymn to prove her point.

With opinions like these who needs a comic section?

  • Lokelani Dynes
    Wailua Homesteads

Where are the antlers?

Does anyone know the story of the antlers on the deer statue in Kukuiolono Park ?

I have a photo of my aunt and uncle from the 1920s sitting on the deer that had a full rack of antlers. When I was little in the 1950s we would often stop at Kukuiolono Park so I could play on the deer. In the photo of me sitting on the deer grabbing his ears there are no antlers. In a 1978 photo of my son jumping onto the deer it’s not clear if there are any antlers. In a 2002 photo, two of my grandkids are sitting on the deer which now has a stump of an antler on the right and two antler points on its left.

  • Marilyn MacQueen Santiago
    Port Angeles, Wash
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