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Thursday, March 15, 2018
March 15, 2018 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 5:57 PM :: 3073 Views

State House to honor Hawaii wounded warrior Brian Kolfage

Will DLNR Use Sea Level Rise as Excuse to Wipe out Banyan Drive Properties?

Ige Appoints Russell Suzuki Attorney General

Hawaii AG: Gay Weddings are Mandatory

Honolulu 2nd-Skinniest City in USA

HB1900: Highlights of House Budget

DoA Pesticide Report: Science vs Hysteria

Lawsuit: UPW Prison Guards 'Take Down' Pregnant Prisoner

Suicide: Top Corporate Lobbyist Just Won’t Die

CB: John Radcliffe was given six months to live by presumably the best doctors he could afford, and he’s still kicking after 14-plus months (“Denby Fawcett: John Radcliffe’s Last Fight Is For His Own Right To Die”).

John’s awesome doctors, who have excellent knowledge, training and experience, got it so awesomely wrong. So presumably two not-so-awesome doctors (not everyone can afford what John can) will certify you’ll be dead in six, so you can be comforted the end is near.

Is John not secretly embarrassed at his own hypocrisy (of being the living illogic) of telling others “believe in the doctors that you’ll be dead anyway?” What if they knew they’d live as long as John, even get better? Oops, the doctors were wrong, change my mind!

I gave a eulogy for my friend on the 23rd of February who was given six months to live in 2002. He project-managed and was directly involved in constructing a school and renovating a couple of churches in Fiji after his six months were up!

Who were his awesome doctors? They were from Stanford and the Kettering Cancer Center. My friend, Pat Sabey, went (16 years later) when God called him, not when some super smart guys told him….

read … Not-So-Awesome Doctors

Audit: Majority of Honolulu airport workers not in compliance with security requirements

HNN: The majority of Honolulu airport's 23,000 employees are not in compliance with security requirements, an audit has found.

A Security Threat Assessment, completed a few weeks ago, was directed by the Transportation Security Administration.

The audit included a review of all workers with badges, which allow them access to secure areas at the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport.

Among the 23,000 employees are airline crews, food handlers, custodians, security personnel and contractors.

"We have been notified by the TSA that there have been some compliance issues," said Timothy Sakahara, spokesman for the state Department of Transportation. He said that although he is unable to provide specific numbers since the audit is incomplete, the biggest issue was employees not updating their personal information….

State senators on the state Transportation Committee say the widespread inconsistencies are a concern.

"Making sure that the information that the state and federal government has is up to date on all the employees, that's very important," said state Sen. Will Espero, vice chair of the committee. He said that name changes are a problem because people on a no-fly list can try to change their names to gain access.

Sakahara said that the thousands of employees found to be "non-compliant" will get a letter notifying them that they have 60 days to fix the issue or they could be denied entrance.  He said this is not considered a security threat, but if workers are denied security clearance they cannot report for duty. 

State Sen. Maile Shimabukuro, who is also on the Transportation Committee, worries staffing shortages could halt operations….

The audit was only done at Honolulu's airport, but more assessments could be conducted at other airports throughout the state.

read … Audit: Majority of Honolulu airport workers not in compliance with security requirements

Waianae squatter ‘sweep’ averted? Or just more fake news from Civil Beat?

HHC: …Did Governor Ige capitulate and call off a “sweep” of the Waianae Boat Harbor squatter encampment?

Or did he merely explain that no “sweep” had ever been planned, despite what Civil Beat has been shrieking?

It’s a little hard to tell, especially since the governor’s office is not commenting publicly.  But the latter interpretation sure seems more plausible.

State officials have said repeatedly that they had no plans to “sweep” the illegal encampment, and least not any time soon.

The latest public statement by the state’s homeless honcho was that “We are looking at a number of different options in order to try to find housing for the people there, including looking for available land.  Our goal is to try and transition individuals from that property by early June.”

That’s what he said, video from a public meeting clearly shows, and that’s even what Civil Beat later reported.

The problem is that Civil Beat also immediately declared that the stated goal of finding housing for people by June automatically equated to an impending “sweep” of the property.  Other stupid media people immediately adopted that narrative and repeated it without question.

That was very irresponsible, heightened tensions in the community, and probably made it a lot more difficult for the state to work out a reasonable transition….

It’s obvious that Civil Beat wants to appear to champion the squatters and perhaps be their “savior.”

Maybe they’re trying a little too hard.  It sure seems that they’ve crossed over from reasonable objectivity to advocacy that, at the very least, sometimes borders on fabrication.

I guess claiming victory is easier than saying you were wrong, so they’ve now doubled down on the “sweep” narrative.  Others have predictably followed along like lost puppies….

read … Waianae squatter ‘sweep’ averted? Or just more fake news from Civil Beat?

Back In Court As TMT's April Deadline Looms

HPR: Opponents of the Thirty Meter Telescope are back in court today. Hawaiʻi Supreme Court justices will hear arguments about whether anti-TMT forces are entitled to another contested case hearing – this time, on the telescope’s sublease….

Big Island educator and cultural practitioner Kalani Flores opposes the project and considers the mountain to be sacred.

“At Mauna a Wakea, what has happened is people have forgotten their connection to these places,” says Flores, “Decision-makers, politicians, developers are ignoring the significance of these places.”

Flores is at the center of today’s court battle. David Kauila Kopper, an attorney with the Native Hawaiian Legal Corporation, is representing Flores in the case. 

“Well this case is really about the rights of native Hawaiians to have a voice in state decision-making when those decisions could affect their cultural resources or native Hawaiian traditional, customary practices,” says Kopper….

In a separate legal matter, telescope opponents are appealing TMT’s construction permit. Brief filings for that case wrap this spring and the high court is expected to schedule oral arguments by the end of the year….

TMT could not confirm whether a decision on the matter is scheduled for next month. In an emailed statement they said, “Maunakea is still our preferred site for the Thirty Meter Telescope.”

Opening arguments begin today at 10:30 a.m. at the Hawai‘i State Supreme Court.

Reality: Enviros win 90% in Hawaii Supreme Court

read … Back In Court As TMT's April Deadline Looms

Feds Say UH Manoa Overcharged Disabled Dorm Residents

CB: …The university has refunded about $100,000 to more than 40 students to resolve a federal complaint….

PDF: US DoE Letter

read … Feds Say UH Manoa Overcharged Disabled Dorm Residents

Activists Move to Shut Down Tour Boat Operations: Environmental Court Allows Lawsuit to Proceed

MN: After denying a state request to dismiss a lawsuit challenging the issuing of permits to tour boat operators to anchor off Kaanapali Beach, a judge suggested that both sides work to resolve the case.

During an Environmental Court hearing Wednesday, 2nd Circuit Judge Joseph Cardoza also denied a plaintiffs’ motion seeking to stop activities related to the commercial-use permits until environmental assessments are done.

Na Papa’i Wawae ‘Ula’ula, the West Maui Preservation Association and West Maui waterman Randy Draper filed the lawsuit last year against the Department of Land and Natural Resources over the current permitting system for operators of personal watercraft and parasailing, snorkeling and whale-watch tours off Kaanapali Beach.

At the time, 25 permits had been issued for ocean-based operations at the anchorage directly offshore from Kaanapali Beach.

The plaintiffs argued that the environmental impacts of the tour boat operations have not been reviewed….

KHON: High bacteria levels detected at Lanikai Beach

read … Sides in dispute over sea permits urged to work it out

Could Organic food cause Hawaii's high cancer rates?

KITV: …Certain foods can harbor bad bacteria, fungi and parasites which may be a factor in forming cancer. 

Hawaii lawmakers are debating whether the state should pay for research to see if that is the reason behind Hawaii's nation leading rates of stomach and intestinal cancers….

For example watercress, a vegetable which many people eat raw. Acosda and others don't though because of how it is grown in water.

"The water is not clean, you are eating bacteria. It will upset your digestive system, the bacteria is crawling there, it is not dead," said Acosda.

Bacteria may not be the only thing to worry about.

"Liver flukes are parasitic flatworms. The eggs can attach to the flesh of fresh water fish and vegetables that grow in water," said Dr. Wei Jia with the University of Hawaii Cancer Center.

Cooking vegetables or fish will kill liver flukes, which is important because...

"The eggs of this parasites can survive in our body. They live in our bile ducts for 15, 20, even 30 years and cause chronic inflammation," said Jia.

Jia who studies cancer of the liver and intestinal track says chronically inflamed organs are more susceptible to the disease.

Hawaii has the highest rates of liver and stomach cancer in the nation, even though contributing factors like hepatitis C and heavy alcohol rates are the same as the rest of the country.

"Which suggests there might be other risk factors unique to our population and environment here," said Jia, who believes it may in the foods we eat.

Or because our moist, tropical climate, may help spread a type of fungus that produces a powerful cancer causing toxin known as aflatoxin.

The fungus can be found on contaminated rice, peanuts or tree nuts.

"When people store their foods for a long time, a half year, a year or 2, if the foods are slightly contaminated the fungi can grow very, very fast," said Jia.

He's already discovered minute amount of the aflatoxin on teas found here, which are not affected by being heated or cooked.

"They are not going to be killed by cooking. The aflatoxin is very robust and strong and can tolerate the heat," stated Jia.

He is asking the legislature to fund a three year study to see how widespread liver flukes and aflatoxins are in Hawaii….

read … Could Organic food cause Hawaii's high cancer rates?

Cop Allegedly Steals Drugs Allowed to Retire

HTH: Police say criminal and administrative investigations were initiated in October 2017 after it was discovered that cocaine recovered as evidence in 2014 was found to be lighter than reported during its initial recovery.

According to a written statement issued today by Police Chief Paul Ferreira, the criminal investigation was turned over to the Office of the Prosecuting Attorney on March 2 for their review and possible further action….

Police say the investigation quickly identified a sworn employee — which means an officer — as a person of interest in the missing portion of the drug.

The officer was immediately placed on unpaid administrative leave and subsequent audits of other evidence recovered by the officer revealed weight discrepancies in hashish from two separate investigations. The investigations from which the evidence came from had been suspended as those cases had no suspects.

Police say the officer has since retired and is no longer a county employee….

read … Evidence

Family of Seth Rich sues Malia Zimmerman

AP: The parents of Seth Rich, the young Democratic aide whose unsolved murder became grist for right-wing conspiracy theories about the 2016 presidential race, filed a lawsuit on Tuesday against Fox News, claiming that the network’s coverage helped fuel damaging rumors about their son.

Also named in the suit is former Hawaii reporter Malia Zimmerman, who wrote the story for Fox News.

The suit, filed in the U.S. District Court in Manhattan, accuses Fox News of “extreme and outrageous” conduct. It claims that Zimmerman and a regular Fox News guest, Ed Butowsky, intentionally fabricated a story that portrayed Rich as the person who leaked thousands of internal Democratic National Committee emails to WikiLeaks in 2016, which released them to the public in an act that proved damaging to Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.

That story, published on the Fox News website on May 16, 2017, implied that the murder of Rich on the streets of Washington occurred in retaliation for his having leaked the emails. No evidence to support that theory emerged during an investigation by the Washington Metropolitan Police Department, and Rich’s family said they believed that Rich, 27, was killed during an attempted robbery.

Fox News retracted the article a week after it was published, saying that it did not meet network standards….

PDF: Lawsuit

read … Lawsuit

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