Letters for Tuesday • May 16, 2006

• Remembering the Ka Loko lost

• Development issues in need of discourse

• On presidential double-standards

Remembering the Ka Loko lost

The Dingwall and Fehring families have received wondrous island-style support, thoughts and prayers ever since the March 14 breach of the Ka Loko dam, and for that we are eternally grateful. Many in our larger community have not, thus far, had an opportunity to grieve with us and to publicly celebrate the lives of Aurora, Alan and Rowan Dingwall-Fehring, Wayne “Banyan” Rotstein, Tim Noonan Jr, Daniel Arroyo and Christina “Sunny” McNees.

Those wishing to honor the victims are respectfully invited to join us at 9:30 a.m. on Sunday, May 21 along the makai side Wailapa Road in Kilauea. From nearby 4320 Wailapa, we will walk in a procession along Wailapa and down the beach access road to the beach, where we plan to offer a blessing circle and to share remembrances and talk story about the dearly departed. This will be followed by a paddle out to sea to spread the ashes of Aurora and Alan.

Attendees are encouraged to remember to bring drinking water and sun protection, perhaps a snack, and a short verse or any other offering of choice.

Mahalo nui loa, a hui ho,

  • Bruce and Cyndee Fehring

Development issues in need of discourse

There have been many letters lately demanding the end of all development on our island. No one wants to see rampant development, and we all suffer from the same traffic problems, but realistically, in order to support our island life and provide a place for our young, we must either expand reasonably or wither on the vine.

One of the letter writers gives his address as Princeville. This is much like the pot calling the kettle black. Many here can remember how nice it was on the North Shore before the dreaded developers got their hands on Princeville. In those days one could drive to Lihu‘e without passing another car, and there was one traffic light on the island (on a cane haul road). Somebody who lives in Princeville and calls for the end of all development is saying ‘I got mine — to heck with anyone else.’

Another letter writer talks of training our youth to be accountants, doctors, lawyers and other highly paid professions. A noble goal but for whom will these executives perform their services? Our island is not, nor is it likely ever to be, self-sufficient. It will be many years before renewables make a dent in our energy imports. Our county administration spends hundred-of-thousands of dollars a year on outside consultants. A quick stroll through the supermarket shows how much of our food comes from off island — yet no mention is made of low paying farming jobs for our youth. We are unlikely to ever have a factory to make cars, TVs, or even iPods. To get to the real basics of life, remember how stocks of toilet paper disappear from island shelves at the mere mention of a dock strike.

Since we must pay for all this imported stuff, as well as the costs to bring it here, we need a source of outside money. As near as I can tell, there are only three ways to get it. The ideal source of money would be exports to offset the imports. Our classic export product, sugar, has lost out to cheaper producers elsewhere and newer agricultural products such as coffee and papayas will never come close to matching the sugar revenue. One potential agricultural export, GM seeds, is vilified by a large and vocal contingent on our island that will surely make the seed companies reluctant to invest in our island economy. Manufactured exports are an even less likely source of income since we have a dearth of raw materials. The high cost of transporting components and finished products along with much lower labor costs elsewhere would seem to be severely limiting factors.

A second source of outside money is the military and its payroll. The military’s presence is not without cost to our lifestyle and many of the anti-development people are equally anti-military activity of any kind.

Which leaves tourism, the traditional kind, as well as eco-tourism and health-tourism, to patronize all those doctors we will train. It would seem to be inescapable, no matter how much we might wish otherwise, that tourism will remain the primary source of off-island dollars needed to support our need for toilet paper. Yes, tourists cause problems. But killing the goose that lays the golden egg is not the answer. We need rational development at a pace we can live with. Besides tourist-oriented development, we also need to increase the amount of local housing by rezoning and refining our building codes to make it possible to actually build affordable homes. We have had enough rhetoric — now we need to have some give and take discourse.

  • Stan Godes

On presidential double-standards

What kind of a double-standard do we have in this country? During the Clinton administration we were willing to go through lengthy and costly impeachment procedures simply because our President lied when he said that he didn’t have sexual relations with a woman.

But with the Bush administration the President has repeatedly lied to the American people and to our governing bodies in an effort to serve his agendas. He has also violated his legal parameters in the name of “National Security.” It’s time for our elected officials to stand up and do what’s right … initiate impeachment proceedings immediately before there is any further erosion in our Civil and Inalienable Rights.

We’re facing a heavy loss in national confidence that our elected leadership on Capitol Hill is willing to apply the checks and balances of power which are inherent in our system of government. Please take America out of the hands of these blatant few who serve cronyism and personal gain at the expense of our nation. Deliver control of America back into the hands of the many — that’s the basic tenet and the future of Democracy. Begin impreachment precedings now.

  • David Perugini

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