Letters for Friday, February 12, 2021

Our island should be cherished

Aloha. Wanted to thank Gary Hooser for his letter regarding the desecration of the land where the former Coco Palms sat. It is so sad not one of our political leaders cares to make it right. Tear it down, possibly put a cultural center there, or resurrect it back to its formal working condition. Apathy is a heartless thing, meaning “lack of interest, enthusiasm or concern.”

My opinion is we have way too much of it here on our small island. Our island should be cherished, loved and taken care of to the best of our ability. Many discussions have taken place over the years regarding the poisoning the Hawaiian islands by the pesticide companies. Yet they are still here.Why is this? We know what they are doing is very harmful to our ocean, land, air, and especially to our people.

We don’t just have one of these destructive companies, we have five just on our island, and they are operating on all of the Hawaiian islands. We are being treated like ignorant people who do not know how to take care of ourselves and our islands. We need strong voices and action to prevent the harm these companies are causing. Are you OK with the fact that these companies are producing chemicals that have been studied and are now known to cause multiple health problems? Is it OK for our future generations to have children with birth defects, cancer, heart disease, autism, asthma, miscarriage, premature births, spina bifida, to name a few? Why is no one standing up for our people? I’m going to be nauseous. Is it all for money? Young people with young families, you need to say something.

We have to protect ourselves since our political people aren’t. It is going to be very embarrassing when we are telling our future generations the story of the pesticide companies that used to be here. They are going to look up at us with their innocent faces and say, “you used to eat poison?”

Linda Bothe, Kalaheo

Plenty of benefits in HB565/SB830

An open letter to our representatives when considering HB565/SB830 regarding telework. These bills require each county to establish a telework and alternative-work-schedule policy.

The bills would allow employees to act as caregivers as they telework and have alternative-work schedules. Many workers cannot have alternative-work schedules, such as essential workers (nurses, physicians, grocery store workers, janitorial staff, etc.), but for those who can, the benefits of telework impact their lives and the lives of the community:

• Employers: Assuring a smaller carbon foot print, lowering real-estate costs, recruiting a competitive workforce since workers can work from anywhere and do not have to be based in a specific area, reducing absenteeism and turnover, which adds up to approximately $11,000 per half-time telecommuter per year saved by employers;

• Employees: Employees will save $2,500 to $4,000 in reduced cost in travel, parking and food roughly 11 workdays per year in time spent commuting. Caregiving, lower child-care cost and caregiver cost while employed;

• Health advantages to both: Cleaner air with less commuting via bus, commuter trains or cars, which reduces pollution by 4%. Less stress, including the ability to manage triggers by staying away from germs and viruses causing illness in the workplace; less depression from things that impact the workday, such as demanding a boss or annoying coworkers; ability to do more physical activity, relax and eat better from home while being more productive for work.

• The new statistics include 48% of employees are likely to work remotely (38% before the pandemic);

• 50% of the U.S. workforce holds jobs that are compatible with at least partial telework;

• 33.4 million families (2/5ths of all families) include children under 18 years old who must be cared for (as of 2019);

• 65.7 million Americans (29% of adults in the U.S.) served as caregivers for ill or disabled relatives.

Women have disproportionately suffered pandemic-related job loss (53.9%) since February 2020. Ability to telework is seen as one of the benefits of a job, next to health care and flexible hours, to promote a better work-life balance while promoting a better balance to employers and employees.

Passage of these bills would benefit the worker, the employer and the community.

Beverley D. Tobias, Kapa‘a

A COVID vaccine mahalo

My husband and I had our first COVID shots at Mahelona on Jan. 22. We want to compliment Mahelona and all involved in organizing the vaccines.

Mahelona staff and others created a VERY efficient process filled with aloha: At entrance to parking, a check list, then at the doorstep, told to sit on two chairs while our forms and consents were checked, then move to another place, more checking, then told to enter the building and be checked into the computer. Awesome, fast, very-friendly process. Shots, then directed to an area and led to two chairs. A kitchen timer device was placed at our feet: told we could leave when it rings at 15 minutes. Given clear instructions on second dose.

Best part: On the way out the door, three freshly-baked cookies and coffee, served with big smiles.

Not only did we leave feeling very relieved to finally get this protection process begun, we also felt very well-cared for.

Big MAHALO to the staff and all who organized this! Today, at Pono Market, I overheard one of the staff mention the vaccination effort, told her how impressed we were. She smiled and said she would tell the staff. I want to tell everyone.

Judie Fernandez, Kapa‘a

Make travel safer, cancel HB 1286

I agree with Dr. Lee Evslin, M.D., that Hawai‘i’s bill HB1286 is dangerous to health and the economy.

This bill will eliminate the possibility of Mayor Kawakami implementing a second COVID-19 test after tourists arrive. Currently, they need a pre-travel test, but can pick up COVID-19 on the airplane or at the airports. A second COVID-19 test after traveling can reduce the spread of COVID by 30 to 40%, explains Dr. Evslin. Without our brilliant Mayor Kawakami implementing the second test because House Speaker Scott Saiki is blocking the mayor with HB1286, the spread of COVID-19 could accelerate on Kaua‘i, creating more fatalities and more financial destruction. House Speaker Saiki’s plan is the opposite of cost-effective; it is destructive for our economy.

No tourist will complain about getting a second test, which only takes a half hour at a clinic, because he or she knows it will contribute to the safety of all and thereby to a more prosperous economy.

My father, a Harvard-educated medical doctor, agrees with Dr. Lee Evslin. Let’s please convince House Speaker Scott Saiki to cancel HB1286 and really make travel much safer, cutting out the 30-to-40% higher spread rate from one pre-travel test by simply adding a cost-effective, second, post-travel COVID-19 test.

Will Davis, Lihu‘e

Letter to Dee Morikawa about HB1286

This is a reminder that you should be representing the people of Kaua‘i. As a cosponsor of HB1286, you are ignoring all the benefits of Mayor Kawakami’s approach in deciding how to strike a balance between public health and economic health. The results are impressive, compared to those on O‘ahu. Compare our results to Maui, which is following the state’s Safe Travels program, with problematic results, and you can understand our concern with HB1286.

Your support with the pressure from O‘ahu and its visitor industry is shameful and misguided. The so-called confusion to incoming visitors will benefit O‘ahu, where the state’s Safe Travels program is more relaxed, resulting in 50 to 100 new COVID-19 cases a day. For those visitors who are more concerned with exposure to COVID-19, and who do their homework, they will choose Kaua‘i, which has zero to one new cases a day. This is all the more important with the new variants of COVID-19 emerging, which may be resistant to the current vaccines.

If you take the time to read the op-ed article in the Sunday, Feb. 7, edition of The Garden Island, “Saiki’s travel-policy bill unsafe for Kaua‘i, Hawai‘i” by JoAnn Yukimura, Robert Weiner, M.D., and Chad K. Taniguchi, you will understand why HB1286 is a bad bill.

Will you represent Kaua‘i or O‘ahu on this? We are watching.

William Hackett and Yvette Bambas, Kalaheo

  1. I saw a Vampire once February 12, 2021 4:41 am Reply

    I don’t think the county has money to spend or take over the testing requirements from the state. So if the state lapse on the arrivals and its negative test results, it is because that passenger already had a test done or was vaccinated already. I don’t think it would be correct to go through this testing again. One negative test is sufficient. And a vaccination card to prove they have taken the vaccine would be enough.

    1. blindfolded February 12, 2021 4:48 pm Reply

      Honestly what do you know about viruses? The reason that second tests are used is because you can be infected with covid and test negative depending on how long before the test you were infected. Its pretty simple. Who would I trust more, a random guy online that doesn’t understand these basic facts or someone who has spent their whole career studying diseases?

      1. I saw a Vampire once February 12, 2021 10:13 pm Reply

        The county is hype. Leave it to the state to detect it. They’ll find it. Better equipped is them. I wouldn’t trust your legislation.

  2. I saw a Vampire once February 12, 2021 4:44 am Reply

    A negative test results would be enough. And a vaccine card to prove it would be enough. Upon arrival. No need any further debate on the issue of legislation. This is a useless piece of paper. The state has already set the protocols.

    1. Robert Weiner MD February 13, 2021 6:47 am Reply

      The two test system is not twice as good as 1 test for detecting Covid, It is about ten times as good. With one test it will be positive only if the patient contacted the virus about 6 days before the test. About half the infected people do not even know they are infected. With a second test done 6 or 7 days after arrival you can catch many of the people who were infected 5,4,3,2,and 1 day before arrival and those who became infected during travel to
      Hawaii. It simply takes several days for virus shedding in the nose to occur, and if you don’t
      wait to get that second test you will miss most of the cases. This is why Maui usually has about 20 times the new cases compared with Kauai. New variants can make things even worse!

  3. USAF Brat February 12, 2021 6:22 am Reply

    RICO Act
    a lot of guilty (not yet EXposed) Kealoha Stolen Mailboxes, some individuals have multiple stolen mail boxes!

    § 1961. Definitions

    As used in this chapter
    (1) racketeering activity means (A) any act or threat involving murder, kidnapping, gambling, arson, robbery, bribery, extortion, dealing in obscene matter, or dealing in a controlled substance or listed chemical (as defined in section 102 of the Controlled Substances Act), which is chargeable under State law and punishable by imprisonment for more than one year; (B) any act which is indictable under any of the following provisions of title 18, United States Code: Section 201 (relating to bribery), section 224 (relating to sports bribery), sections 471, 472, and 473 (relating to counterfeiting), section 659 (relating to theft from interstate shipment) if the act indictable under section 659 is felonious, section 664 (relating to embezzlement from pension and welfare funds), sections 891894 (relating to extortionate credit transactions), section 1028 (relating to fraud and related activity in connection with identification documents), section 1029 (relating to fraud and related activity in connection with access devices), section 1084 (relating to the transmission of gambling information), section 1341 (relating to mail fraud), section 1343 (relating to wire fraud), section 1344 (relating to financial institution fraud), section 1425 (relating to the procurement of citizenship or nationalization unlawfully), section 1426 (relating to the reproduction of naturalization or citizenship papers), section 1427 (relating to the sale of naturalization or citizenship papers), sections 14611465 (relating to obscene matter), section 1503 (relating to obstruction of justice), section 1510 (relating to obstruction of criminal investigations), section 1511 (relating to the obstruction of State or local law enforcement), section 1512 (relating to tampering with a witness, victim, or an informant), section 1513 (relating to retaliating against a witness, victim, or an informant), section 1542 (relating to false statement in application and use of passport), section 1543 (relating to forgery or false use of passport), section 1544 (relating to misuse of passport), section 1546 (relating to fraud and misuse of visas, permits, and other documents), sections 15811592 (relating to peonage, slavery, and trafficking in persons).,[1] section 1951 (relating to interference with commerce, robbery, or extortion), section 1952 (relating to racketeering), section 1953 (relating to interstate transportation of wagering paraphernalia), section 1954 (relating to unlawful welfare fund payments), section 1955 (relating to the prohibition of illegal gambling businesses), section 1956 (relating to the laundering of monetary instruments), section 1957 (relating to engaging in monetary transactions in property derived from specified unlawful activity), section 1958 (relating to use of interstate commerce facilities in the commission of murder-for-hire), section 1960 (relating to illegal money transmitters), sections 2251, 2251A, 2252, and 2260 (relating to sexual exploitation of children), sections 2312 and 2313 (relating to interstate transportation of stolen motor vehicles), sections 2314 and 2315 (relating to interstate transportation of stolen property), section 2318 (relating to trafficking in counterfeit labels for phonorecords, computer programs or computer program documentation or packaging and copies of motion pictures or other audiovisual works), section 2319 (relating to criminal infringement of a copyright), section 2319A (relating to unauthorized fixation of and trafficking in sound recordings and music videos of live musical performances), section 2320 (relating to trafficking in goods or services bearing counterfeit marks), section 2321 (relating to trafficking in certain motor vehicles or motor vehicle parts), sections 23412346 (relating to trafficking in contraband cigarettes), sections 242124 (relating to white slave traffic), sections 175178 (relating to biological weapons), sections 229229F (relating to chemical weapons), section 831 (relating to nuclear materials), (C) any act which is indictable under title 29, United States Code, section 186 (dealing with restrictions on payments and loans to labor organizations) or section 501 (c) (relating to embezzlement from union funds), (D) any offense involving fraud connected with a case under title 11 (except a case under section 157 of this title), fraud in the sale of securities, or the felonious manufacture, importation, receiving, concealment, buying, selling, or otherwise dealing in a controlled substance or listed chemical (as defined in section 102 of the Controlled Substances Act), punishable under any law of the United States, (E) any act which is indictable under the Currency and Foreign Transactions Reporting Act, (F) any act which is indictable under the Immigration and Nationality Act, section 274 (relating to bringing in and harboring certain aliens), section 277 (relating to aiding or assisting certain aliens to enter the United States), or section 278 (relating to importation of alien for immoral purpose) if the act indictable under such section of such Act was committed for the purpose of financial gain, or (G) any act that is indictable under any provision listed in section 2332b (g)(5)(B);
    (2) State means any State of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, any territory or possession of the United States, any political subdivision, or any department, agency, or instrumentality thereof;
    (3) person includes any individual or entity capable of holding a legal or beneficial interest in property;
    (4) enterprise includes any individual, partnership, corporation, association, or other legal entity, and any union or group of individuals associated in fact although not a legal entity;
    (5) pattern of racketeering activity requires at least two acts of racketeering activity, one of which occurred after the effective date of this chapter and the last of which occurred within ten years (excluding any period of imprisonment) after the commission of a prior act of racketeering activity;
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    (6) unlawful debt means a debt
    (A) incurred or contracted in gambling activity which was in violation of the law of the United States, a State or political subdivision thereof, or which is unenforceable under State or Federal law in whole or in part as to principal or interest because of the laws relating to usury, and
    (B) which was incurred in connection with the business of gambling in violation of the law of the United States, a State or political subdivision thereof, or the business of lending money or a thing of value at a rate usurious under State or Federal law, where the usurious rate is at least twice the enforceable rate;
    (7) racketeering investigator means any attorney or investigator so designated by the Attorney General and charged with the duty of enforcing or carrying into effect this chapter;
    (8) racketeering investigation means any inquiry conducted by any racketeering investigator for the purpose of ascertaining whether any person has been involved in any violation of this chapter or of any final order, judgment, or decree of any court of the United States, duly entered in any case or proceeding arising under this chapter;
    (9) documentary material includes any book, paper, document, record, recording, or other material; and
    (10) Attorney General includes the Attorney General of the United States, the Deputy Attorney General of the United States, the Associate Attorney General of the United States, any Assistant Attorney General of the United States, or any employee of the Department of Justice or any employee of any department or agency of the United States so designated by the Attorney General to carry out the powers conferred on the Attorney General by this chapter. Any department or agency so designated may use in investigations authorized by this chapter either the investigative provisions of this chapter or the investigative power of such department or agency otherwise conferred by law.
    § 1962. Prohibited activities

    (a) It shall be unlawful for any person who has received any income derived, directly or indirectly, from a pattern of racketeering activity or through collection of an unlawful debt in which such person has participated as a principal within the meaning of section 2, title 18, United States Code, to use or invest, directly or indirectly, any part of such income, or the proceeds of such income, in acquisition of any interest in, or the establishment or operation of, any enterprise which is engaged in, or the activities of which affect, interstate or foreign commerce. A purchase of securities on the open market for purposes of investment, and without the intention of controlling or participating in the control of the issuer, or of assisting another to do so, shall not be unlawful under this subsection if the securities of the issuer held by the purchaser, the members of his immediate family, and his or their accomplices in any pattern or racketeering activity or the collection of an unlawful debt after such purchase do not amount in the aggregate to one percent of the outstanding securities of any one class, and do not confer, either in law or in fact, the power to elect one or more directors of the issuer.
    (b) It shall be unlawful for any person through a pattern of racketeering activity or through collection of an unlawful debt to acquire or maintain, directly or indirectly, any interest in or control of any enterprise which is engaged in, or the activities of which affect, interstate or foreign commerce.
    (c) It shall be unlawful for any person employed by or associated with any enterprise engaged in, or the activities of which affect, interstate or foreign commerce, to conduct or participate, directly or indirectly, in the conduct of such enterprises affairs through a pattern of racketeering activity or collection of unlawful debt.
    (d) It shall be unlawful for any person to conspire to violate any of the provisions of subsection (a), (b), or (c) of this section. BoomKanani, REtroactive four decades+

    1. james February 13, 2021 6:41 am Reply

      So you can cut and paste a statute. Good for you. Did you have a point?

  4. kauaiboy February 12, 2021 6:56 am Reply

    Bravo, Linda Bothe! Calling out the “seed companies” for what they are: “PESTICIDE COMPANIES”. Gay and Robinson, the State of Hawaii, and any other landowners who lease land to these companies should be taken to task.

    Get rid of these vermin. Create a publicly held Cannabis Corporation with shares held by Kauai residents. Grow and market “Made on Kauai” hemp products produced by locally owned added value companies. Hemp helps to remediate poisoned soils. Keep the money on Kauai. That will enable us to lower our need for excessive tourism. Think about it.

    Hey Will Davis, nothing wrong with the idea of a second test, if one can be administered at the Lihue Airport upon arrival. The problem is these silly “bubble resorts”, where those who are awaiting a second test to see if they are infected with Covid, are mingling with local resort residents and workers. And who wants to come to jail, wearing an ankle bracelet, at exorbitant prices? No one I can think of…

  5. USAF Brat February 12, 2021 7:28 am Reply

    Biased much? Boycott The Garden Island Newspaper and the fraudulent puke skanks that comment and actually want us to believe their Rhetoric! Epsteininians are alive and Hewa Loa! Didnt your parents teach you about lies and how one lie leads to the next lie for decades. If you dont comply the Mob gonna get busy!

    1. Guy February 13, 2021 9:27 am Reply

      Yes, Brat, please do boycott it. At least the online edition.

  6. YuCalJoe February 12, 2021 7:41 am Reply

    In a previous post I mentioned that I have a reservation to visit Kauai in April. The reservations were made with the hope that COVID would be less of an issue by then. As a result of the current rules, I looked into adding 4 days to my current plan to see what the cost would be for transportation to a bubble resort, lodging at the resort for 4 days, getting the COVID tests (two of us), and transportation back to the airport so that I could rent a car and start my planned visit. The minimal cost for the aforementioned is an additional $1,500. And this does not include delivered food and groceries. Therefore, if the current rules are in place two weeks before my planned trip, I will need to cancel my trip. I can’t see paying an additional $1,500 to be confined to a resort, and incur other costs that can be avoided. On an aside, Los Angeles County has vaccinated over 1.3 million residents as of February 4, 2021. With the population of Kauai (without tourists) being over 72,000, why not ask for that many vaccines to be provided to Kauai residents at one time? Then the restrictions could be modified to ease the burden upon the residents and businesses on Kauai.

    1. nobody February 13, 2021 5:50 am Reply

      Take a test and fly into a neighbor island, wait three days and have fun, take another test and visit Kauai. No quarantine, no wasted time. The other islands have a lot to offer as well.

      I’m not sure why this idea is not promoted more? Anyone?

    2. james February 13, 2021 6:47 am Reply

      You don’t think we are trying to get the maximum number of vaccines as quickly as possible? Why would the State give us 100% of our population’s needed vaccines before other Counties? I know we are special, but not that special.

    3. Kara Thrace February 13, 2021 4:42 pm Reply

      Our whole population will not get vaccinated. Children, pregnant women, and anyone under 16. Not to mention you can still contract covid after vaccination. Hawaii News Now reported on it a few days ago. Not to mention a Maryland Senator as well. CDC also hasn’t concluded whether or not you can spread COVID post vaccination.

  7. John Patt February 12, 2021 8:32 am Reply

    I too am very disappointed in Rep Morikawa’s decision to weaken our defenses against COVID by supporting HB1286. Some of Mrs Morikawa’s close associates on Kauai are senior softball players. The overwhelming majority are over 70, and they are greatly concerned about COVID. To me, Rep Morikawa has turned her back on her ohana, her community, her island. I can only pray that she will have the strength to re-examine her views, and join na kupuna in our struggle until the virus has been vanquished.

    1. Dee Morikawa February 14, 2021 8:06 am Reply

      John Patt,
      I am Kupuna too. I test every week, because I travel for work. I protect myself everywhere I go by masking and distancing. My support for this bill is for the struggling unemployed and businesses. That is a huge health issue. We know what to do for protection from this virus, now we need to help those in poverty who haven’t gotten any unemployment relief. I am thinking about everyone. Most or all of the older Kupuna are retired and have income. Think about those without any money. Further, why are so many assuming that travelers are all infected. Be safe, help each other and be kind.

  8. Paulo February 12, 2021 8:51 am Reply

    A big thank you to Will Davis for his letter and also to William Hackett and Yvette Bambas who pointed out that in defiance of Mayor Kawakami’s stellar record in keeping Kauai’s caseloads low, Dee Morikawa was part of the reason for the HB 1286 bill as co sponsor.

    Nothing like having a Kauai rep trying to take our home rule options away when they are working better than those of the other counties and those of the state.

  9. Joe Public February 12, 2021 2:09 pm Reply

    William Hackett and Yvette Bambas, totally agree with you folks, seems like the longer the serve on Oahu, they THINK they are from Oahu. our Mayor helped us avoid the large infections…like Oahu.

    Maybe it is time to find a new representative for our island and Niihau

  10. Charlie February 15, 2021 7:36 am Reply

    Julie, the best part of the vaccine experience may just have been that cookie, you see you have been injected with an untested Experimental Gene Therapy that may take a few to discover what these unknown gene just might do to you and the others who got the cookies, was there Kool-Aid too ?

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