Letters for Tuesday, April 3, 2007

• May common sense prevail

• Wilcox hospital staff live aloha

• Spending trillions to fight terror

May common sense prevail

Barbara Elmore’s Guest Viewpoint (“The weather’s always changing, the climate needs stability,” Forum, April 2) regarding Mike Hough’s editorial on alternative accommodations (“The weather’s the same, but the climate may be changing,” Forum, March 30) paints Mr. Hough as deceitful, sly, and even immoral.

I suggest that there are at least two sides to every story, and often a great deal more. Let’s face it … to one degree or other, we all act out of self interest — even Ms. Elmore — and few of us are truly impartial on issues that directly impact us. That is why a solid argument can be made for those councilmembers who are employed by, or who derive a good deal of their income from, hotel and resort corporations who stand to benefit from passage of Bill 2204, recusing themselves discussing or voting on the issue when it is on the council chamber table. But I digress …

Lest I arouse Ms. Elmore’s criticism regarding my vested interest in the matter, let me state for the record that I am a farmer, a Realtor, a husband, a father and the owner/operator of two vacation rentals. I am proud of all my achievements. I support fairly applied law and order, I vote, and I do not allow myself to be led blindly by anyone. I understand there are real problems to be sorted out in the Hanalei-Ha‘ena area regarding the regulation of vacation rentals there. However, I am offended by Ms. Elmore’s assertion that reasonable people should oppose laws supported by Realtors. Realtors support, among a multitude of laws like those prohibiting robbery and vandalism, private property rights, which should not be disregarded. And, contrary to what Ms. Elmore would have readers believe, my wife and I and many others in similar situations of rising costs and taxes, do, in part, supplement our income, pay our taxes, and provide for our family with income from our rentals.

Ms. Elmore argues that other employers would love to hire some of the people we employ to help us maintain our rentals. Of course they would, at salaries which necessitate working multiple jobs to survive. We hire independent contractors, and pay them well. That fosters not only entrepreneurship on the part of these workers, but keeps competitive pressure on the hotel/resort corporations to pay workers a living wage.

Who do you think will be the major beneficiaries if all paying visitors to Kaua‘i are corralled into the hotel/resort zones?

Further, who is Ms. Elmore to say to alternative accommodation visitors who would choose not to return to Kaua‘i if boxed into a VDA, “You missed the entire point of your stay”? Return visitors to Kaua‘i who prefer alternative accommodations place great value on the ambiance and privacy of their accommodations.

No, we do not worship “visitor dollars,” but we welcome them. And then we spend the lion’s share of them right here on Kaua‘i, supporting other local businesses. Ask at Kawamuras or Tanakas or Aloha Lumber, or at a myriad of other locally owned businesses if they value our patronage. Curtailing our income, along with that of hundreds, if not thousands of other Kaua‘i residents is not a sensible or sustainable policy.

May common sense prevail.

Bruce Fehring


Wilcox hospital staff live aloha

Since Thanksgiving, I have used Wilcox Memorial Hospital six times: for an operation; for diagnostic endoscopies; and for four emergency room visits.

I was well treated by all doctors, nurses and staff that I encountered. The facilities were very clean and well provisioned for the different centers allocated to them. Everyone was aware that I was uncomfortable because of pain and other symptoms, but they each made me feel better through the professional, friendly care that they provided. I have been in clinics and hospitals in many parts of the country and they are rapidly embracing “assembly-line” medicine.

We are fortunate here, that we still have a small-town environment at Wilcox, except that the people and equipment are first-rate. In short, the doctors, nurses and staff really do care about you and your comfort, and they go the extra mile to ensure it.

One example illustrates their attitude. On an emergency room visit, my problem was diagnosed and well treated. Then, I recuperated for several hours. The doctor determined that I was well enough to not admit me as a regular patient. He also explained that the emergency room did all it could for me, and that I could benefit from bed-rest at home. However, I was too unsteady to be allowed to proceed home alone. After obtaining proper authorization, it was decided that nurse Jeanne Ferrari-Amas and security guard Scott Taba could take me home — by wheelchair.

Now, please do not expect this treatment as a regular course of action. My circumstances were unusual. This presented a problem that the personnel involved huddled and solved, and I am grateful that they did.

Before complaining of your treatment at Wilcox, please consider that you are there because you have a problem and that you will not be at your best walking in the door. Give the folks that you meet there a chance to help and they will.

Be grateful that you are at Wilcox and not at Walter-Reed, and show it.

Jay L. Politzer


Spending trillions to fight terror

Does our government really believe that spending trillions of dollars to fight a war on terror will really work?


They are just helping a handful of war profiteers get exceedingly rich at the expense of every other person on the planet. To stop terror all you have to do is change U.S. policy. Remove U.S. troops from Muslim countries, and rather than spending trillions on bombs, spend millions on aid. The rest of the world hates the United States because we make up a small percentage of the world’s population and yet we use more resources than any other country. Our troops are essentially corporate mercenaries assuring that other countries resources end up in the U.S.

Wake up America, our government is the real cause of terrorism.

Jason S. Nichols



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