Letters for Monday, July 22, 2013

What a disgraceCool heads needed when it comes to 2491Les Mis is not to be missed

What a disgrace

Unbelievable. Jimmy Pflueger, multimillionaire land owner on the island Kauai got a plea bargain pass on the deaths of seven people when he covered the spill way on his dam and caused a flood of water wiping out the lives of these innocent victims.

Seven counts of manslaughter and he gets five years probation. It’s disgusting, it’s another demonstration of a justice system that works in your favor if you’re rich and can hire big lawyers.

I have lost all respect for the judges, I don’t trust the system, I don’t trust the prosecutors. What an insult, disgraceful. If there is a demonstration on my island I am going to show for it.

Thomas McCall


Cool heads needed when it comes to 2491

A cool head would think that it is quite reasonable to expect the biggest users of restricted use pesticides (herbicides such as atrazine, paraquat, dicamba, alachlor and insecticides such as synthetic pyrethroids, carbamates, organophosphates) to disclose to their neighboring communities what is being applied, as a simple courtesy at least.

A cool head would read the proposed County Council Bill 2491 and understand what it says instead of fantasizing about the bill ultimately applying to “farms of all sizes.”

Nobody likes somebody else looking over their shoulder legislating more paperwork and greater scrutiny. But who wants the potential legacy of deadened soils, sickened people, polluted water, and less productive coastlines, especially on this green speck of an island in the vast blueness of the Pacific Ocean?

Cool headed farmers certainly not. Some of the largest chemical companies in the world? I’m not so sure. Especially when they threaten to sue at the first hint of the public looking at their poisonous farming practices. I heard it myself in the Council chambers the day Bill 2491 was first presented.

How big are these chemical companies that bought seed companies that operate on Kauai?

• BASF is a German chemical company with 110,000 employees, 380 production sites around the world, and 2012 sales over $50 billion.

• DUPONT PIONEER has 12,300 employees, over 150 research and development sites worldwide and 2012 sales of $6.3 billion DuPont, its parent company, has 70,000 employees 317 production sites worldwide and 2012 sales of $34.8 billion.

• DOW AGROSCIENCES has 7,700 employees with 62 research and development sites, 56 manufacturing sites and 2012 sales of $6.4 billion. The parent company, Dow Chemical Company, has 53,000 employees, 188 production sites in 36 countries and 2012 sales of $ 56.8 billion.

• SYNGENTA is a Swiss agrochemical company with 27,000 employees, 57 manufacturing sites with 2012 sales of $ 14.2 billion.

A cool head would see that equating the interests of these international chemical/seed corporations with the family farmers of Kauai is a long reach. It would be very difficult to farm organically if they were your neighbor employing their current production technologies. The bylaws of the Kauai County Farm Bureau state that the purpose of the organization is to support “the opportunity for happiness and prosperity” in the realm of agriculture. May it be so.

Ned Whitlock

Organic Farmer Farm Bureau Member since 2002


Les Mis is not to be missed

My husband and I have lived on Kauai for over 20 years and have attended almost every local theater production during that time. We have been consistently amazed by the quality of performances, sets, costumes and production.

The continuing flow of talent on Kauai supplies excellent casts, from small children to adults. Last night we attended the Hawaii Children’s Theatre production of Les Miserables, a very ambitious project and one of the very best we have ever seen.

Les Mis is one of the most successful and revered pieces of musical theater in the world. It is no small feat to put it on. I love Les Mis and just hoped for the best that a local, amateur theater company could do, in a small warehouse theater setting.  

It turned out that I was totally blown away by the quality of my experience. From start to finish, the show was superbly performed by a large cast of talented adults and children.   

HCT made the very most of their small theater, with the production actually surrounding the audience. The sets, costumes. The tragedy, passion and humor. The incredible music. The quality of the voices and acting. The audience was fully engaged throughout the whole show and on their feet for a loud, enthusiastic standing ovation the minute it ended.

I was deeply moved, highly entertained and enthralled the whole time. I won’t single out any particular performer, because literally everyone worked very hard and was excellent. And, the Les Mis stars truly shone.  

If ever there was a show not to be missed on Kauai, it is HCT’s Les Miserables. It is very difficult to get the rights to produce Les Mis and they persisted. This opportunity may not come again to Kauai for a long time, if ever. We are blessed by their efforts. There are performances Thursday through Sunday for the next two weekends. For more information call 246-8985 or visit www.hawaiichildrenstheatre.com

Roxanne MacDougall

Wailua Homesteads


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