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Monday, August 19, 2019
August 19, 2019 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 4:22 PM :: 2834 Views

Two mass killings a world apart share a common theme: ‘ecofascism’

Grassroot: Are we doomed to run out of resources?

Hawaii Among Least Innovative States

First Class Bribery: Honolulu Rail COO David Uchiyama

ETN: … David Uchiyama is a man with many jobs in a short time. A true example of the still very active Good Old Boy network that has ruled the Hawaii business industry since Statehood and before.

In 2006 when  HART just started David Uchiyama served as vice president of sales and marketing for Hawaii Gas. After this, he became vice president of brand management for the Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) from 2007 to 2015.  He was in charge of international marketing for the State’s largest industry.

In 2017 Uchiyama was fined $2,500.00 by State regulators what some said was a bribery attempt by airlines. The offense: Uchiyama along with other top leaders of HTA asked for an upgrade to first class on business trips when he worked for the Hawaii Tourism Authority….

About one year after interisland carrier Island Air abruptly ceased operations the airline’s former CEO David Uchiyama has taken an executive role with Roberts Hawaii, the state’s largest tour and transportation company.

It’s not clear why Uchiyama left Roberts Hawaii just some short months later. The local tour company has many reasons to be part of the good old boy network, so the reason why Uchiyama was hired in a leading position and left months later may never surface.

Last week 61 years old David H. Uchiyama was named the first Chief Operating Officer (COO) of the Honolulu Rail Authority (HART).

By the time rail is fully operational it will be time for Uchiyama to retire… 

SA: David Uchiyama named chief operating officer for HART

read … Honolulu Rail: A First Class Section suggested by new COO David Uchiyama?

How A Design Detail Caused A Multi-Million Dollar Headache For Honolulu Rail

CB: … Canopy arms, meant to anchor the sail-like fabric covers for the stations, were already plagued with design and construction problems. Then, they started cracking….

read … How A Design Detail Caused A Multi-Million Dollar Headache For Honolulu Rail

How Maui Got its Telescope Built—Despite Protesters Objections

SA: … Construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope has been blocked at Mauna Kea for more than a month by a Native Hawaiian protest that seeks to safeguard what many regard a sacred mountain against a lawfully permitted project.

Meanwhile, another cutting-edge observatory, the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope atop Haleakala, is nearing completion after escaping a similar fate during protests in 2015 and 2017 involving some of the same people embroiled in the TMT protests.

While the Maui incidents weren’t exactly on the same scale, former Maui Mayor Alan Arakawa says authorities handling the TMT protest would have been wise to follow Maui’s example.

“We didn’t fool around,” Arakawa recalled. “It was, this is what the law is, and this is how you enforce it.”

Arakawa said the time for negotiation with TMT protesters was long past as the $1.4 billion project survived a lengthy governmental review plus legal challenges that went all the way to the state Supreme Court.

“It comes down to a simple question: Are we a community of laws, or are we a community where anyone who raises an objection can defy those laws?” he said. “We are legally bound to uphold the laws of the state of Hawaii and the U.S. That’s our obligation.

“We’re going to let a handful of people stop what most people believe is a good project? It hardly makes sense in a democratic society,” he said.

Arakawa said authorities should have taken decisive action at the beginning of the TMT protest because the task is only going to get harder….

After demonstrators blocked an initial shipment, Maui police were ready for subsequent ones, moving decisively to enforce the law twice in 2015 and once in 2017, each time facing between 100 and 200 demonstrators, some of whom traveled to Maui from other islands.

Police arrested 34 people over the three protests, including 20 in one night in 2015. Among those arrested were Kahookahi Kanuha, Kaleaikoa Kaeo and Lanakila Manguil, each of them leaders of the Mauna Kea “protectors.”

Arakawa said Maui police gave clear instructions about what would happen if the demonstrators deliberately tried to obstruct the trucks. They also came with enough officers to handle the job when the activists did get in the way, he said.

“Nobody was beaten up or physically hurt,” he said….

Related: SHOPO: Police plans to arrest TMT protesters Disrupted by ‘Politics’

read … Hawaii leaders needed to be more decisive in enforcing law on Mauna Kea, former Maui mayor says

Leaders of TMT protest out for own power gain

SA: … Maui Office of Hawaiian Affairs Trustee Carmen Hulu Lindsay’s TV news performance while being arrested for protesting the Thirty Meter Telescope was vile.

This Realtor who sells Hawaii to the highest bidder lives in a posh Kula neighborhood on Maui with more than 9,500 square feet of living space on two acres. I had ohana die on the Hawaiian Homes list who never got land.

OHA and the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands should be dismantled. Like the greedy fat cats who run them, I believe the “leaders” of the TMT protests, many of whom own land, are manipulating disenfranchised kanaka around a false narrative for their own power gain.

I do not feel sorry for a very tiny number who claim they can’t pray on the mauna, while I get on a plane once again, leaving my ohana, because I can’t afford a home. Step aside and let the TMT be built. Address substantive issues….

SA: “The lieutenant governor, a doctor, has seemingly written off possibility of discovery through TMT as well.”

read … Leaders of TMT protest out for own power gain

Telescope Protesters Live in Gated Communities to Keep the Rest of us Out

SA: …“I wish that the Hollywood celebrities trying to stop the Thirty Meter Telescope would help us stop overdevelopment, but many of them are probably living in these communities that are designed to keep us out.”….

KITV: 'They would die for our Aina': Native Hawaiian superstar Nicole Scherzinger

read … Celebrutards Slammed

Law can’t be based on recognizing a religion

SA: … The First Amendment to the Constitution states Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof. Hawaii’s laws must comport with the Constitution.

As such, state legal decisions based upon recognition of Hawaiian natural religion (e.g., worshipping Mauna Kea) are prohibited. Individuals may worship Mauna Kea as they see fit….

read … Law can’t be based on recognizing a religion

Sonny Kaniho and the road to Mauna Kea

ILind: … A state Senate committee hearing this past week raised questions about legal ownership of parts of the Mauna Kea access road where the current protests are taking place, potentially weakening the state’s ability to take more aggressive actions to clear TMT opponents from the access road….

It called to mind a 1974 protest by a Hawaii Island rancher, Sonny Kaniho, who had been on the Hawaiian Homes waiting list for a number of years. Kaniho was seeking a lease of pasture land, and became increasingly distressed by the granting of pasture leases to commercial interests, including Parker Ranch, while qualified Hawaiian lessees remained in waiting list limbo.

Finally, in May 1974, Kaniho took direct action, backed up by a small group of supporters. Together they removed a gate in to a 375-acre pasture leased to Parker Ranch, and symbolically “occupied” the pasture.

Hawaii County police issued trespass citations, and those cited were ordered to face trial on the charges in the district court in Waimea.

I’m familiar with the case because I was one of those charged with trespass and facing trial….

Kaniho and 17 supporters went to trial in August 1974. During the trial, attorney Robert “Gil” Johnston elicited testimony showing that the Parker Ranch lease had expired at the end of 1973. This prompted Judge Norman Olds ruled the land had reverted to state ownership at the expiration of the lease, and that as a result the defendants had not trespassed on Parker Ranch property. Trespass charges dismissed!…

The decision to rely on commercial leases for income, while understandable as a reaction to chronic underfunding, could again be reasonably seen as putting private commercial interests ahead of those of DHHL beneficiaries.

Then add the broader context provided by the 1983 report of a joint federal-state task force, which determined that thousands of acres of Hawaiian Homes Commission land was illegally taken from the homestead program by executive orders between 1923 and 1969, including land under the Hilo Airport.

In 1985, Gov. George Ariyoshi approved approved returning to the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands 27,836 acres that had been illegally transferred over the years.

And a decade later, the state agreed to pay $600 million, and to take other steps (including the land swap for the Mauna Kea access road) as compensation for past illegal use by the state. But when the agreed upon land swap didn’t happen, it was again Hawaiian interests suffered.

Whether or not the failure to make the land swap back in the 1990s leaves the State Department of Transportation in the same position as Parker Ranch in 1974 is an open question.

However, it does add to the series of transactions in which Hawaiians were promised, but did not receive, their due.

And there are many more examples, including the Hawaii Supreme Court’s finding several years ago that the legislature breached its constitutional duties by failing to provide sufficient funds for the DHHL administrative budget….

ILind: A bit of fake news from the protectors

read … Another link between TMT and 1974 protest by Sonny Kaniho

Ethics Comm Member Tries to Defend Kealoha Coverup

SA: “…I see no reason to doubt Commission Chairwoman Victoria Marks’ statement that Totto was not fired or forced to resign as a result of his investigations of the Kealohas. DeCaires left after the city managing director determined that her long series of short-term contracts violated city hiring policy and ordered that no further renewals be granted….”

Best Comment: “Lots of people are not buying what this clown is selling”

read … A swing and a miss

Some Hawaii visitors stranded because of potential vacation rental cancellations

HNN: … A new law that hopes to enforce illegal vacation rentals is causing a headache for some.

"I paid half a deposit because that was something I got nervous about, I'm not paying a full until I know for sure this is an okay place," Toni Jenschke, a North Carolina resident, said.

Jenschke is coming to Hawaii for the first time next month. She put down a $400 deposit for her Airbnb in Waikiki. Now she's not sure if she has a place to stay when she gets here because the unit might be outside of the city permitted areas.

"I don't know what I should be doing. I don't wanna get an email a week out saying you don't have a place to stay and I'm coming from North Carolina," Jenschke said….

"I think it's real bad for tourism because it puts a bad taste in the tourist's mouth and it shows we don't have aloha for these people who are now stranded," Bruce Fisher, Hawaii Aloha Travel, said.

Fisher is a travel agent and customers have been calling him for help since the new law went into effect….

read … Some Hawaii visitors stranded because of potential vacation rental cancellations

Some Six-Figure Salaries At The State’s Watchdog Agencies

CB: … At look at the payrolls of the State Auditor’s Office, Ethics Commission and Ombudsman’s Office …

read … Some Six-Figure Salaries At The State’s Watchdog Agencies

Money Flows into Project that Does not Get the Homeless off the Streets

SA: … Recognizing that there was a need to…decrease the over-utilization of emergency room and EMS services for the homeless, a public-private partnership was formed to establish H4. Two temporary locations have been established in Iwilei and Chinatown, and a third location just opened in Kaneohe on Saturday…. 

SA Editorial: Expand homeless outreach centers

Related: $82K Per Bum: Hospitals Rake in $1.2B Treating Homeless Shelter-Refusers

read … Homeless Healthcare Hui can change lives for better

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