Letter for Friday, March 15, 2019

Southwest, the double-edged sword

Southwest Airlines coming to Hawaii is like the second coming to many. Champagne corks were metaphorically bursting all over the 50th state when Southwest announced their March 17 inaugural schedule of flights between San Francisco and Honolulu for as low as $49 one way on select flights.

The good news: cheap flights! The bad news: our already stressed tourism industry which brings on overstressed statewide infrastructures will be even more stressed.

The Garden Island is already experiencing record tourism, which effects everything from standstill traffic jams, long lines at the grocery stores and walk-in clinics. My latest pet peeve is even my favorite spot to bike and walk my dog, the beautiful Eastside pedestrian/bike trail, is now like a human highway with bicycle rentals. It’s no longer the peaceful/meditative experience it once was.

The great news: cheap flights; the bad news: even more visitors will saturate our islands, further stressing our roads, sewage systems, and other crucial infrastructures which can barely accommodate the 70,000-plus residents currently residing here, with these inexpensive airfares.

I am delighted travel will finally be affordable. I am saddened and depressed that Hawaii will never be what it was, but then again that’s the price we pay for “progress?”

Therefore, on the bright side, like The Mamas and Papas song of the ‘60s says, “So if you’re going to San Francisco, make sure to wear some flowers in your hair!”

I guess you call it a double-edged sword.

James “Kimo” Rosen, Kapaa

  1. Jake March 15, 2019 2:32 am Reply

    Ok, I guess I need to play the broken record yet again…….

    Any finger pointing about too many visitors, the poor infrastructure, poor roads, too much traffic, lines too long at supermarkets, sewage problems, or the water is not blue enough………wait for it……….should be pointed at your pandering elected government officials and the “I have no sense of urgency” Government Workers on these islands.

    The Government, in the 1950’s, saw the end of the Plantations coming, and through alllllllllll their chips in to TOURISM, because after the Plantations, these islands produce NOTHING but sun, surf, and nice beaches year round.

    Tourism is not the root cause of all your problems. It is the inept “born and raised”, government workers, elected officials, that really have no incentive to think outside the box and change things. They don’t want to change things! Like you, they yearn for their childhood, when Hawaii had less buildings, less tourists, less people, and less traffic. I got news for you ……… the population is not going to go down, so start planning for even more people. No accountability Government is the problem.

  2. kauaiboy March 15, 2019 7:31 am Reply

    Hey Kimo,

    We all feel really sorry that the multi-million Eastside pedestrian/bike trail is no longer just for your meditative experience, and that you must share it with both locals and visitors alike. Get real. It is for everyone to enjoy. Try go at 6AM. I’m sure you will be able to wade through all the bicycle rentals at that time.

    Maybe you should consider lightening the load on the island’s infrastructure, and facilitation your need for a meditative open space by flying to a desert location, and be sure to take your dog with you.

  3. james March 15, 2019 7:43 am Reply

    When balancing the prospect of slightly cheaper airfares with the increased influx of people on our Island, I could live without slightly cheaper airfares.

  4. gordon oswald March 15, 2019 9:48 am Reply

    The song was not made famous by the Mamas and Papas. It was a hit and sung by Scott Mckenzie, not the Mamas and Papas. It was written by a member of the Mamas and Papas. Not made famous by it!

  5. 5MillionAmile March 15, 2019 10:32 pm Reply

    The county of Kauai paid 5 million dollar a mile for concrete slabs. How many miles they coveted? It was the biggest fraudulent heist the county made of federal dollars. The recreational scenic bike path was deemed a multinational pedestrian transportation route.

    You all wonder why they raised taxes? This pork poject made the powers friends and families RICH over fraud, waste, and abuse. 25-50+ million on a luxury item like Eiwa and Rice st while county roads and parks are ghetto AF! Then the powers come up with another heist called the GET tax increase to fix county roaks and now they say it’s not enough. Get ready for another state and county collusion to raise phony taxes to pay for their nepotism and ineptitude.

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