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Friday, September 30, 2011
Letters to the Editor, September, 2011
By Letters to the Editor @ 6:38 PM :: 8679 Views

Paper or Plastic: Let us decide for ourselves

Dear Editor:

Our county council is still considering a law banning plastic bags from retail stores, forcing us all to either paper or reusable shopping bags instead. This is supposedly in our best interests from litter and environmental reasoning, despite that it will definitely increase our cost of living, increase the hassle levels of daily life, increase the volume of our land fill, and is unproven in any venue to actually have decreased the net level of litter. In fact, many communities have faced lawsuits based on increasing damage to the environment as a result of increased use of paper over plastic bags.

Plastic bag use is widely considered a cheap and valued convenience by our community. This sort of micro-management of our daily lives is unwanted by most citizens, as they correctly view this sort of manini intrusion as excessive, and beyond the proper role our government should take. The implications are that many Councilmen consider most citizens too stupid to act in their own best interests, and so must be forced in to details of behavior by the more enlightened wisdom of a mere majority of the council.

These sorts of decisions should be made by the community as a whole, and should be submitted to the people as a referendum.

All citizens who vote are capable of weighing these pros and cons, and making their own decisions on these matters. This isn’t that hard.

Stop passing laws that increase our cost of living and make our lives harder, without asking our permission first.

We therefore urge the council to put this and all similar measures to a vote by referendum, and allow the community as a whole to decide.

Walter Moe, President

Edward Gutteling, V.P

The Conservative Forum for Hawaii

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Thanks Councilmen for Rejecting Impact Fees

Dear Editor,    9-23-11

Thank You Councilmen Ikeda, Onishi, Pilago, Yagong, and Yoshimoto from protecting us from another bad law which would have raised our cost of living and made our lives even harder by voting down the law on new building impact fees.


Walter Moe, President

Ed Gutteling, Vice President

Conservative Forum of Hawaii

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Sakamoto Forced Medical Tourism on Maui

Dear Editor,       Sept. 21, 2011

In Hawaii it is easy for elected officials to politically maneuver on Oahu, and expect that the neighbor islands won’t catch on. Well, it used to be easy before computers and political watchdogs.

Do you all remember when Dr. David Sakamoto was previously the administrator for the State Health Planning and Development Agency - also known as SHPDA?

Sakamoto turned down the Certificate of Need that would have allowed the construction of a desperately needed hospital on Maui. There was no legitimate reason to turn down the application for this hospital filed by well-known and well-respected Dr. Ron Kwon. Sakamoto “left” SHPDA shortly after this ruling.

Those who profit from our current monopoly hospital system on Maui are:

  • Oahu hospitals that receive Maui patients and millions of their health care dollars;
  • Oahu rental car companies, restaurants and hotels;
  • The Hawaii Health Systems Corporation, which operates several state hospitals in Hawaii;
  • and of course, since the state hospital system is unionized, the Hawaii Government Employees Association also benefits.

This “forced Medical Tourism” means we on Maui must go to Oahu to get full medical care. Sakamoto made sure money kept flowing from Maui pockets into Oahu pockets. Sakamoto also made sure all those good hospital jobs went to Oahu.

Some politicians profit from this arrangement in the form of political donations. Each HGEA employee is forced to pay union dues. Some of this money is used to donate to political puppet candidates. Gov. Neil Abercrombie receives a great deal of union financing and support. Even if union members didn’t vote for Abercrombie, their money did.

Governor Abercrombie has now appointed Dr. Sakamoto Deputy Director of the Department of Health. Is the Governor unaware of our plight? Did he not do his homework?

I’m just asking, who is really running the government?


Jan Shields L.V.T., B.S.N., R.N.C.-NIC

Kahana, Maui 

Related: Appointments: Abercrombie lays three eggs, Wings off to Paris

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Hawaii County Impact Fees Unfair To Those Building Their Own Homes

Dear Editor,            September 19, 2011

Bill 304 that is before the County Council, which implements impact fees, should be amended to exempt everyone except developers. Councilman Hoffmann has previously stated that residents oppose impact fees, but that developers welcome them. This will appease everyone while bringing the County into compliance with HRS.

A single home does not make a significant impact to the surrounding community. Large developments do. This bill will create a hardship on residents trying to build their own home and cause the County to spend additional revenue that it does not have to cover the impact fees for affordable housing.

Bill 304 still has many flaws that I hope the Council will address before passing it.

Lee McIntosh

Discovery Harbour, Hawaii

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Abercrombie Appointment an Insult to Maui

Aloha, September 19, 2011

In response to Gov Neil Abercrombie's appointment of former State Health Planning and Development Agency administrator David Sakamoto to be a Department of Health Deputy Director:

What a shame Governor. Now we know how you feel about Maui ever having quality health care! Maui desperately needs a State of the Art Medical Center. Sakamoto ruled against it in 2006 by blocking one from being built. The funds would not have come out of the state, still it was blocked. Even though Maui only has one hospital which does not compare to Oahu's Hospitals, still Sakamoto blocked it.

Well Maui remember this. Election time is right around the corner. Vote for progressive minded candidates that CARE about you and your loved ones. Care that we get the best.

And wonder why are they blocking it. What are they afraid of? It all comes down to money in someone's pocket. How sad for Maui. I look forward to hearing from our representatives that are still fighting for our new hospital.

Lisa Dunn

Kihei, Maui

Related: Appointments: Abercrombie lays three eggs, Wings off to Paris

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2% for 'Open Space' is a Tax

Dear Editor, September 18, 2011

The Hawaii County Council is preparing to allow the voters the option of a permanent 1% or 2% allocation in property taxes for the Open Spaces Fund whereby a handful of political appointees will decide what historic lands to preserve for the “public benefit”. This unnecessary “tax” – this year estimated to be about $2-$4 million - is redundant and bad public policy. Laws already on the books allow for obtaining private lands for the good of the public, without further tax increases, from money already in the same pot. Eminent domain, zoning laws, tax rates, building codes, etc, already provide the means.

When Mayor Kenoi wanted to sell the Hamakua Lands, some members of the council wanted to include provisions whereby the buyers would be required to disclose the intent of their purchase, how much it would cost and when they intended to make their improvements. How about we apply the same idea to government? Let’s require the Open Spaces committee to disclose the intent of their proposed purchases, when they intended to implement their plan, how much it will cost, where the money is coming from, what is the extended annual cost to the taxpayers for upkeep and maintenance and what is the source of funds for that. Let’s also add that the purchase of private properties by government removes it from the property tax base, reducing the base and making the remaining taxpayers liable for that tax shortage and encumbers further liabilities for the county. Additionally, Councilmember Ford wants the Open Spaces fund in perpetuity – forever – thereby binding future councilmembers to this bad public policy under unforeseeable future circumstances. I believe it might even be illegal to do that.

Just weeks ago we read about the deteriorating conditions at our existing public parks and the Panaewa Equestrian Center, problems that have existed for at least a decade or more, with no resolution = no money. We hear about the proposal to impose “hefty building taxes” to pay for police and fire. How much police or fire could we pay for with the estimated $2 -$4 million taken for open spaces, every year?

Let’s put it on the ballot, Open Spaces Fund Yes or NO.

Rick Toledo

Hilo, Hawaii

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2012 Is All About Trust

Dear Editor, September 17, 2012

In my opinion, the next election isn’t about jobs so much as it will be about trust. I say trust, because I don’t trust this Administration. I mean why would I? There is no transparency. This President ran on transparency and instead installed mirrors. This President who appears to have never held a job in the private sector or earned a nickel based upon a product (other than words, that is), is attempting to micromanage the greatest economy on the planet, apparently molecule by molecule, brick by brick.

To me, this administration is interventionist. They also act as if they don’t trust us. Don’t trust me, why trust you? Security breeds trust in our society. When you don’t have this security, you lose trust. Well this Administration is breeding trust issues with the productive sectors of America.

Truth is. Whether it is taught or not is certainly relevant, but does the institution itself even know the truth? Innovation comes from competition, in my opinion. When you have competition, you have a need to have a marketplace to profit by that competition, but unfortunately, the various Departments of Education, which should be teaching competition, are the bastions of limited choice.

Omnivores survive because they have the capacity to survive and compete. An organism with a specialized digestive tract oftentimes needs abundant manipulation and support to survive, usually at great cost to more productive segments of the environment. Just look at the Palila bird, or look at the Endangered Species Act in total. In my opinion, the teachers unions are a specialized digestive tract and should vie for listing with the EPA except that if I get my wish, I’d then have to pay for it, in order to keep their unproductive specialized digestive tracts comfortable at taxpayer expense.

The Administration has insisted that every company in the land have pro-union posters conspicuously displayed. What would be the penalty to having no-union posters I wonder? The National Labor Relations Board is pushing for reduced days for an organization to respond to union activity, thus forcing balance towards unions and counter to private enterprise. NLRB is attacking Boeing Aircraft Company for wanting to create a new plant in a right to work state and non-union jobs. Is this trust? Is this the requisite security necessary nourish an expanding economy?

Farmers, nationwide, like the sugar industry's woes with the EPA, will now potentially have bad dust issues with the same. Make people responsible. Don’t be responsible for them as an intrusive government.

In my opinion this next election will not be about jobs, it will be about trust and morality. Government can be said to be immoral, as it trades in force. Capitalism can, by extension, be considered moral, as it trades in innovation and free trade, competition, and self-determination. Jobs will, like an incursion into any pristine environment, be slow to stake out their niche or product, but as the atmosphere develops, business will flourish. That's what the Jobs Creation Act is supposed to be about, but where is the trust?

Tom Lodge

Keaau, Hawaii

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Hawaii Council Impact Fee Making Affordable Housing Out of Reach

Dear Editor,

Once again, our Hawaii County Council is ready to make our lives harder and more expensive.

This time, it is by a new law demanding an additional $4400 to $7000 tax for each newly built house as an “impact fee.” This is in addition to their many controversial and unnecessary new building code changes that will add potentially $25,000 to each new home cost.

“It’s a necessary tool to bring needed services and infrastructure to deserving communities like mine” said Councilwoman Brittany Smart.

Yet the biggest need for infrastructure is in the private subdivisions where 42% of us live and most new houses are built, and where the county is forbidden by law to spend public monies.

All this tax will do is make affordable housing that more out of reach for those who can least afford it already. But maybe that’s their whole point, to drive people away. What’s next, “impact fees” for each live birth?

It is apparent that our council never misses an opportunity to take money from the people, raise our cost of living higher and make our lives more difficult.

When was the last time they passed a law that lowered our costs of living, or made our lives easier? Maybe never. Especially in these severe economic times, the last thing we need is a county government that just doesn’t “get it.”

Edward Gutteling, Vice President
Walter Moe, President,
Conservative Forum of Hawaii

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Ron Paul Supporter: 9-11 Commemoration Should Honor Conspiracy Theorists

Dear Editor, 9-13-2011

Four 9/11 widows, the Jersey girls, who were the main family members who demanded a 9/11 investigation have a video called Press for Truth which is free online. They endorse those who say that it is impossible that jet fuel brought down towers on 9/11 and this group, headed by Richard Gage, also have a free video on line called 9/11 Blueprint for Truth.

Rather that repeating all the lies we heard ten years ago, why not honor the 30% of Americans (in 2006) who feel 9/11 was an inside job?

Why not give some support for active duty soldiers in Iraq sending most of their campaign contributions to the only anti-war Presidential candidate, Ron Paul.

The war on terror was based on a lie.

Ray Songtree


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