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Sunday, September 5, 2010
September 5, 2010 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 1:26 PM :: 7810 Views

Star-Advertiser endorses Hannemann, Aiona

(Looks like Dan H Case lost the vote on this one...) For the past six years, as mayor of the nation's 12th-largest city, Hannemann has demonstrated the know-how and energy to lead with laserlike focus, as he's shown with the revival of rail transit for Oahu. He has shepherded a vision 40 years in the making over federal, city and private hurdles. Beyond being a sorely needed transportation option, rail and its future station communities will shape the direction and nature of smart growth via transit-oriented development.  (They want a strongman to rule over Hawaii.)

We want to see such intensity devoted to fixing the state's budget crisis.  (By raising taxes.)

REALITY: Good News: A small elite no longer runs Hawaii -- Bad News: Mufi thinks he can change that, Flip-Flop-Flip: Hannemann again refuses to take position on Gay Civil Unions

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Obama’s 9th Circuit nominations rejected by Senate

Just before the Senate recessed in early August, two key 9th Circuit appointments were sent back to the White House, effectively scuttling the chances of University of California-Berkeley law professor Goodwin Liu joining the appeals court or San Francisco Magistrate Judge Edward M. Chen being elevated to the U.S. District Court for Northern California.

REALITY: To rule over Hawaii: Obama nominates Gay Marriage activist to 9th Circuit Court, Kyl: Liu's writings 'vicious'

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18,000 new voters as Christians register and felons are knocked off rolls

Bernice Mau, Honolulu city clerk, said that on Oahu there were about 76,000 requests for permanent and regular absentee ballots as of Friday.

That's up from the 62,810 Oahu residents who requested absentee ballots before the 2008 primary. Of those, 51,415 residents returned their ballots and 13,027 voted at early-polling places for the primaries, she said.

In total, about 40 percent of voters voted by walk-in or absentee ballot on Oahu in 2008 and that percentage is on track to rise this year, Mau said.

"I think people see the convenience of the vote-by-mail," said Mau. She said residents may have appreciated the convenience of three recent mail-in elections, which led to the election of City Council members Ikaika Anderson and Ann Kobayashi and U.S. Rep. Charles Djou.

Meanwhile, registered voters in Hawaii dropped to 685,000 from 697,000 last week after officials updated the database, which included removing the names of the deceased and felons.

Mau said the number of registered voters will grow as people register for the general election in November, having already missed the primary deadline.

There are more registered voters this year than in the 2008 primary, when there were 667,647 registered voters, including 450,522 on Oahu. That year, 167,047 Oahu voters -- about 37 percent -- cast their ballots.

RELATED:  Cardines: “Improve the future of Hawaii’s families by voting”, Early Voting sites open now across state

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More Porkulus? Djou and Hanabusa clash on additional federal aid to states

Officials said Hawaii's share of the latest stimulus program is expected to be about $100 million.

"Hawaii's going to get a small portion of the bill, and of course I'm always happy when Hawaii gets additional resources from the federal government, but I think it is fundamentally unfair that we're asking Hawaii taxpayers to bail out other states that have been incredibly reckless in their budgeting process and have been unable to balance their budgets," Djou said.

State Sen. Colleen Hanabusa, Djou's likely Democratic opponent in the November general election, said she would have voted for the measure.  (Does pork still sell in Hawaii?  We will find out Nov 2.)

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Hawaii Political Dirty Tricks Go High Tech

When a political endorsement doesn’t go your way, why not just start a new group with almost the same name and have it endorse you so people think that the group you wanted to be endorsed by actually endorsed you in the first place.

Confused? That may be the plan of the Venture Capital Association of Hawaii, which last week announced its endorsement of Mufi Hannemann for Governor, Bobby Bunda for Lt. Governor, and Peter Carlisle for Mayor. The group just started up three week ago and has never held a public meeting.

AP: Venture capitalists split their support between Abercrombie and Hannemann

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GOP turncoat Anderson joins Hannemann campaign

Word is that veteran local pol D.G. “Andy” Anderson has joined the upper echelon of Mufi Hannemann’s campaign for governor for the stretch run.

Anderson, 80, is a former Hawai‘i Republican chief who was credited with engineering Frank Fasi’s comeback run for Honolulu mayor in the 1980s, but he hasn’t had success with other campaigns since.

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Abercrombie open to legalized gambling

Last week former Congressman Neil Abercrombie nudged open the door to making gaming an issue in this Democratic primary race for governor.

Asked if he would support gambling or even a lottery for education, Abercrombie rejected gambling, but added that some form of lottery might be worth studying.

Even that was tentative.

"Hawaii by itself could not support a lottery any more than it could support casino gambling. We simply don't have the population base and I don't think people come to Hawaii to enjoy that type of activity," Abercrombie said.

But he did break some new ground by saying, "It is something to be explored only if we put it in a mega-lottery context and I would be willing to discuss it and look to see if education or cultural and arts" would benefit from it.

Abercrombie's website later posted a clarification noting that he is opposed to legalized gambling and a state lottery, calling a lottery "essentially a form of taxation."

"Neil is open to the possibility of joining existing multi-state lotteries if they would be willing to offer Hawaii specific prizes. ... Neil does not believe that gambling in any form needs to be explored right now," his website said.

For his part, Mufi Hannemann has held an unambiguous position against gaming, gambling and lotteries.

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Maui mayoral race: Economy in spotlight as old political foes quarrel

While the idea was to give fresh perspectives in an unfiltered atmosphere, at least two old political foes, Mayor Charmaine Tavares and former Mayor Alan Arakawa, still managed to exchange some not-too-subtle barbs.

For instance, Arakawa repeated his refrain that government (i.e., Tavares) is attacking unpermitted, home-based businesses and transient vacation rentals at a time when the administration should be doing everything it can to help small-business owners.

"The county should not be closing down businesses during a downturn," Arakawa said to applause.

Arakawa went on to say that the economic crisis should not be blamed for Maui County's financial woes. When he was mayor, from 2002 to 2006, unemployment was less than 2 percent, he said.

"We are in an economic recovery not because of the government," but because residents are working through its hurdles, he said.

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Rivals protest endorsement of Tamayo by her nonprofit

"It's a matter of her campaigning illegally against the nine of us," said Bob Vieira, one of 10 people running in downtown District VI, which stretches from Kalihi Street to Makiki. "It's not a level playing field."

The nonprofit Stand Up for America was founded by Tamayo and her father, state Sen. Mike Gabbard, after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks to promote patriotism and America's unity as "one nation under God." It is exempt from paying income taxes and may receive tax-deductible contributions as a charitable organization under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Service code.

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State lauded for support of Guard and Reserve

The Hawaii state government has been awarded the 2010 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award, the highest recognition given by the U.S. government to employers for their outstanding support of their employees who serve in the National Guard and Reserve. The Hawaii State Government was selected as one of only 15 employers from across the nation to receive the 2010 Freedom Award.

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Hawaii human trafficking case covered world-wide

Hawaii electrical grid maxes out on intermittent power supplies

The boom in solar panel installations is already having an impact in smaller markets like parts of Molokai and Lanai, where electrical circuits have maxed out on their ability to take more solar power.

Recent installations of photovoltaic panels in Kaunakaki, Molokai, mean that an estimated 15 percent of the electrical generation comes from the sun, pushing the circuit to the maximum level for so-called distributed generation allowed by the Public Utility Commission. And Castle & Cooke's solar farm that provides electricity to homes and businesses on Lanai can operate at only half its capacity because at full output it could destabilize the island's tiny electrical grid.

The issue is top priority for officials at Hawaiian Electric Co. and the Kauai Island Utility Cooperative, who have agreed to work with the state to reach its goal of generating 40 percent of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030.

(And it’s going to cost you.)

REALITY: Wind Energy's Ghosts

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Hawaii 9-11 Truther comes back from Gaza to celebrate as anniversary approaches

(Ken O’Keefe) …when I was in America on 9-11 and everybody was ready to kick some “terrorist butt!” and fight the “War on terror”, I knew plain as day that the actual plan was to carry out yet another war of terror and kill a whole bunch of innocent people.  Sadly most of my fellow Americans could not understand double-speak (yep, 9-11 trooothers are ‘conscious, progressive, and enlightened’, they’re smarter than we are….)

Eventually I made it south to the “Land of the Free”, while in Hawaii visiting my mother I had a Special Agent of the FBI come to visit me; and so I we chatted for about two hours.  He seemed a nice enough chap, but I made clear his boss (FBI Director Robert Mueller) was a traitor with inside knowledge of 9-11….

I will be mostly in the Northwest; Washington, Oregon and California, with a planned visit to Kansas as well.

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Hawaii scammer defrauds deaf

Targeting the deaf: A Hawaii man and his company have been ordered to pay more than $6.2 million in restitution, fines and penalties for operating a Ponzi scheme that defrauded 125 investors, all of whom were deaf. Marvin Cooper and his Honolulu-based company, Billion Coupons, promised investment returns of 15% to 25% per month

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Matson cuts fuel surcharge

As a result of recent declines in bunker fuel prices, as well as benefits from Matson's fuel conservation and fleet optimization efforts, the company announced yesterday via press release that it is decreasing its fuel surcharge by 3.75 percentage points.

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