by Andrew Walden
Why is it OK for Obama to accept advice from Al Sharpton but not OK for Trump to accept advice from Steve Bannon?
Its an argument made by some Trump defenders before the white nationalist Bannon was booted from the White House.
Here’s a better question: What has Al Sharpton ever done for black people (besides the one black person named Al Sharpton) and why would white people want their own Al Sharpton?
Naturally this leads us to the October 30 Hawaii State Supreme Court 4-1 decision allowing Thirty-Meter Telescope construction on Mauna Kea.
The Office of Hawaiian Affairs and anti-Telescope protesters call Mauna Kea ‘sacred’ but in reality they have been demanding rent money. OHA’s hand-picked protest leader Kealoha Pisciotta says $50M will do.
Are the interests of Native Hawaiians best served by shaking down scientific projects for cash Al Sharpton style?
Science is the road to the future. Some people are going to be travelling that road and others will be standing by the side of the road attempting to collect tolls. The toll collectors are eventually going to be left behind—as they were October 30.
It is absurd to believe that a culture founded on star-based navigation would be against astronomy. Instead of demanding rent money—which we all know will be stolen and squandered by OHA insiders—Hawaiians should be demanding improved education so their children can be the scientists of tomorrow.
This isn’t happening because political cronies haven’t figured out how to grab a cut of your kid’s PhD salary—and there is no leadership which consistently challenges the rent-seeking political culture.
Meanwhile the tourism industry long ago figured out how to profit from Hawaiian culture and exploit Hawaii’s false image of ecotopia as a selling point for that Hawaii dream vacation. OHA insiders cash in on nebulous “Hawaiian sense of place” deals with developers—who then magically don’t get protested. Hotels sic protesters on other industries—such as the seed industry, Kauai’s proposed dairy, Maui’s last cane plantation, and TVRs which compete with the hotel monopoly. Resort operators eagerly jump on every eco-hysteria—banning sunscreen and plastic for instance—thus propounding the hype and allowing money-grubbing greenmailers to grab a cut of the tourism industry’s business by peddling so-called green products.
Soon tourism will be the only private sector left in Hawaii.
Now you know why.