Letters for Wednesday, September 3, 2014

• There needs to be a bar for politicians • Council should think of options beyond tax raises • Government can’t solve all our problems

There needs to be a bar for politicians

Would you want a surgeon who was a high school dropout? Would you want a lawyer defending you who was a high school dropout? Do you want a high school dropout as one of your elected politicians making major life, death and financial decisions for you?

I believe there should be standard educational backgrounds for those running for public office.

Politicians run the country, yet anybody, even a high school dropout, can run for political office. Lawyers must pass the bar exam. Doctors have approximately eight years of school, an internship and residency before becoming a full fledged doctor. Politicians need zero education or prior experience. It’s usually on the job training. There needs to be a bar for politicians, too, and I’m not talking of an alcohol bar — although there are plenty of those.

A phrase I learned while hunting in Alaska is my method determining who to vote for, “keep your nose in the wind and eye on the back trail.”

“Politics is supposed to be the second oldest profession. I have come to realize that it bears a very close resemblance to the first.”

Ronald Reagan.

According to the late George Carlin, the real reason we cannot have the 10 commandments in a courthouse:

You cannot post thou shall not steal, thou shall not commit adultery and thou shall not lie in a building full of lawyers, judges and politicians. It creates a hostile work environment.

James “Kimo” Rosen, Kapaa

Council should think of options beyond tax raises

In response to Frank Kelly’s letter Aug. 31. Thanks for your input Mr. Kelly. My letter was mostly about making people aware that there are many creative ways, as well as the most dramatic ways, to solve problems such as privatizing government run public employed services.

Unfortunately, solution ideas from the “private sector” for cutting county spending and budget balancing falls on the deaf ears of some councilmembers, who have learned over the years how to continually run the county business as they do. It’s from the inherited (business as usual) ways of using property taxes that creates the mentality to assume that only the property taxes will be their never-ending sustainable means of income to provide the costs of county services. I don’t imagine there is a law on the books that says “county councilmembers are not allowed to be creative and find ways to raise revenue and must only use property taxes for providing county services.” We are overwhelmingly a tourist destination. 

Why are we being taxed off our properties? A big decrease to property taxes, a 1/4 increase to our excise tax and privatizing most county services will create a better balance of who is and who’s not paying a share in the costs involved in providing county services to everyone. 

Steve Martin, Kapaa

Government can’t solve all our problems

Sustainable …

Gary Hooser’s biggest fault with the GMO decision was that the state of Hawaii wouldn’t hire more pesticide inspectors. With all the legislative mandates, the state of Hawaii doesn’t have the cash flow to fund existing positions. Sustainable government means that we have to take more responsibility for ourselves! We have to quit looking to more government to solve our problems. That money’s already been spent, by legislators who can’t even fund their own retirement system. Every piece of legislation should carry a cost-benefit analysis. Then, maybe fiscal priorities will be more obvious. In the meantime, we are responsible for our own sustainable lives. Grow like weeds!

Michael Curtis, Koloa


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