Why is there so little media investigation of the financing behind Barack Obama’s early political sponsor—and now convicted felon—Tony Rezko?
The dual US-Syrian citizen Rezko--who assisted Obama in the purchase of his Chicago mansion--was heavily funded by loans from Iraqi-British ex-Baathist billionaire Nadhmi Auchi. According to testimony at Rezko’s trial, Obama met Auchi at an April 3, 2004 event at Rezko’s home during Obama’s 2004 US Senate campaign. The Times of London reports discovering, “state documents in Illinois recording that Fintrade Services, a Panamanian company, lent money to Mr. Obama’s fundraiser in May 2005.” Fintrade directors, according to The Times “include Ibtisam Auchi, the name of Mr. Auchi’s wife”.
Media bias is an easy—and intellectually lazy--explanation. Journalists digging into stories involving Auchi often find themselves peppered with threats of libel litigation from a London law firm known as Carter-Ruck. Hawai'i Free Press has received several such letters.
If your senator or representative is on the committee, it is imperative that you send them a message today urging them to keep health care out of reconciliation. They are meeting THIS AFTERNOON, so time is of the essence. By far the most important two are Kent Conrad and Allen Boyd, Democrats who have been skeptical about using reconciliation.
Due to the state’s projected $2 billion revenue shortfall and decreases to the DLNR budget, it was not known when funds would be available to make repairs to reopen the road and park. The infusion of community volunteer energy made it possible for the park to be reopened sooner.
Thursday May 7 2009 State Capitol Auditorium 6:30-8:00 PM
HB519HD1SD2, includes the following section of the bill, which adds the provision of bringing women home first (On page 3, Section 2 (c), line 16): (c) The director of public safety shall return to Hawaii all women inmates that are detained or incarcerated in out-of-state prison or correctional facilities by December 31, 2011…”
The capital of Pakistan was under threat last night after Taliban fighters threatened to overrun the volatile country and came within 60 miles of Islamabad. It is feared the state is on the brink of collapse as Taliban fighters get closer to the nuclear powers of the country.
Another notable cash-on-hand total was the $150,000 reported by Honolulu City Councilman Charles Djou (R) in Hawaii’s 1st district....
Senate hikes Hawaii hotel room tax
Cataluna: Legislators need pay cuts, not retirees
Hawaii Legislature passes tax hikes on income, cigarettes
Tobacco settlement fund shift criticized
Democrats confident of prevailing on taxes
There's a new bogeyman lurking in the closet, and this one isn't imaginary. Us. One out of three children aged 6 to 11 fears that Ma Earth won't exist when they grow up, while more than half—56 percent—worry that the planet will be a blasted heath (or at least a very unpleasant place to live), according to a new survey.
Karen’s Law will be heard in conference committee Wednesday at 3:00pm in room 229. Please send testimonies in support of HB819....
Does terrorism work?
My goal and commitment to you in 2010 is to help elect a Republican Governor, a member of Congress and more Republicans to the legislature, council races and Board of Education. As Party Chairman, I will work to ensure that Republicans contest all Legislative seats so that Hawaii voters have real choices on election day.
April 15th, 2009 was just the beginning of something huge. We must keep our momentum going, and keep the pressure on our elected officials as they vote on how much more of our money they will spend, and how much more of our money they will confiscate. Congress is back in session this week, and the champions of big government will be working to pass a massive budget, a new national energy tax, government-run healthcare, and other policies that would cripple our economy even further.
If these bills are approved by April 21; the Legislature has a chance to override any veto before their scheduled adjournment on May 7:
With a Hawaii County internal investigation of Internet abuse by employees beginning to heat up as a political issue, perhaps the same people who chose to ignore now-mayor Billy Kenoi’s fundraising on behalf of Mafia murderer Malu Motta will become interested in questions about Kenoi’s possible campaign use of government computers, email accounts, office space, and telephones.
Before a boisterous crowd of approximately 20,000 in the Georgia Dome, the four Hawai‘i teams got down to business at the “Super Bowl off Smarts,” which started yesterday and wrapped up today. They competed with close to 350 other teams from Brazil, Canada, Israel, Mexico, the Philippines and the U.S. mainland. The competition challenged the students to use their critical thinking skills and knowledge of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) to maneuver robots they built themselves around a playing field.
The Legislature’s brief argues that the court’s ruling has “dangerously undermined” the Legislature’s constitutional authority to craft precise laws that reflect its policy choices....
(Since TV news viewers are being treated to daily spin on the remarks at and after the Austin TX Tea Party by Texas Governor Rick Perry, here is a flashback to another elected official who spoke about secession....)
KASTE: Democratic Senator Dan Akaka, himself a native, wants Congress to let Hawaiians re-establish their national identity. He says his bill would give them a kind of legal parity with tribal governments on the mainland, but he says this sovereignty could eventually go further, perhaps even leading to outright independence.
Sen. AKAKA: That could be. As far as what's going to happen at the other end, I'm leaving it up to my grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Joe Bertram believes sexual predators are clogging up our prisons and should be out of jail, free to lure more of our innocent children. I believe they belong behind bars and away from our communities. Bertram’s actions are not only disgusting, they are dangerous.
State House and Senate members passed a $4 billion tax increase on the people of Hawaii today on the eve of the largest anti-tax protest in the nation’s history.
The legislature wants every resident in the state of Hawaii to pay more for gas, and more in vehicle registration fees and vehicle weight fees (Senate Bill 1611).
The legislature also passed tax increases which could put hotel employees out of work by increasing the Transient Accommodations Tax. Leaders in the hotel industry say that this new tax would hurt the hotel business and their ability to compete with other tourist destinations, especially during a bad economy. (Senate Bill 1111).
A tax increase was also levied on Internet sales. (Senate Bill 1678)
Under Act 228, county permitting agencies were prohibited from issuing permits for demolition, construction or other alteration of such structures until after the building or homeowner provided the black-and-white photos to SHPD, which then determined if the structure could be modified or demolished.
We can all agree that our State is experiencing one of the worst economic downturns in its history. This 2009 Legislature has made numerous efforts to remedy this situation. Unfortunately, these efforts have resulted in high tax increases and anti-business legislation that will hurt rather than help our floundering economy.
I will be joining hundreds of other hard working Hawaii taxpayers at 4pm on April 15 at our state capitol to display our objection to government taking the easy way out and sending us a bigger tax bill. Families across the nation are tightening their belts to deal with these difficult economic times and instead of doing the same, all levels of government want to simply make these times harder and raise our taxes. This is unfair and unacceptable.
For those who feel they're paying too much and have a yen to vent, there's an event tomorrow just for you (assuming that you're not one of those last-minute procrastinators and have the time to attend). The "Tax Day Tea Party" will be held 4-7 p.m. at the state Capitol.
Here's the call to action from the organizer's Web site, www.overtaxedhawaii.com:
"Many of our elected state legislators in Hawaii are planning to enact massive tax increases in the weeks ahead when the legislative session ends on May 7th. YOU CAN HELP STOP THEM.
Once you start getting up to times 40 yes it can be a really powerful psychedelic, you'll see things shoot, you won't remember your name you'll start drooling a little bit your hands will sweat a little bit," said Sochocki.
"They become afraid may jump off buildings may do things like most hallucinogenic substances," said Kamita.
Individuals involved in ceded-lands litigation Kuroiwa v Lingle have issued two statements in response to Duke Aiona on Ceded Lands: High Court decision leaves no winners:
...while you might know it from Proposition 8's victory last year, voter initiatives to ban gay marriage are becoming harder and harder to pass every year.....
(This analysis is flawed by its reliance on 'white evangelicals' since in Hawaii opposition to gay marriage comes from evangelicals of all ethnic backgrounds. Also in California, opposition to Prop 8 came from black and Hispanic precincts. But the bottom line is the same. Church-goers better start registering to vote in the same percentages that union members do.)
(Be sure to check out the videos of West Hollywood gay protesters shouting the n-word after the approval of Prop 8.)
...several division presidents and secretary-treasurers, have been convicted since 2001 of felonies ranging from embezzlement, falsifying official reports to government, mail fraud and conspiracy....
The firm’s main office was raided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) last year.
Any general tax increases at this time will further damage the economy and prolong recovery. Higher taxes would be the straw that breaks the backs of many local businesses. Now is not the time to take money out of the economy.
SEVEN "Tax Day Tea Party" events are scheduled for Hawaii April 15 Here is a news release for the Hilo event as well as contact information and details for each of the seven events.
And after only eight days, all of the repairs were done, Pleas said. It was a shockingly quick fix to a problem that may have taken much longer if they waited for state money to funnel in."
Not just state money, state workers. Two years to complete the project, the state said, whatever it was, and four million bucks. And these people did it in eight days! Ivan Slack said, "'We can wait around for the state or federal government to make this move, or we can go out and do our part. Just like everyone's sitting around waiting for a stimulus check, we were waiting for this but decided we couldn't wait anymore.' ... Now, because of their hard work, volunteers hope they'll be ready to send that positive message -- right in time for the tourist season."
Debating where to draw the line in corporate spending, with Lt. Gov. James "Duke" Aiona, R-Hawaii and CNBC's Erin Burnett. (Obama administration back-pedaling against Obama's condemnation of business travel.)
Douglas Suhm from Tacoma, Washington and Dr. David Teuscher from Texas were in Oahu testifying about tort reform and Senators Baker and Ige were disrespectful enough to stand up and walk out of the room.
The best short credo of liberalism came from the pen of the literary historian Vernon Parrington in the late 1920s. "Rid society of the dictatorship of the middle class," Parrington insisted, referring to both democracy and capitalism, "and the artist and the scientist will erect in America a civilization that may become, what civilization was in earlier days, a thing to be respected."
Some public figures are using England's plaintiff-friendly laws to go after books they don't like. New York and Illinois have come to the defense of U.S. writers. Congress and California should too....
A newly formed group, the Hawaii Republican Assembly, is sponsoring a tax protesting "tea party" at the state Capitol on April 15. While the group's fliers don't contain a blatantly partisan message, they do claim a "revolution is brewing in Honolulu."
The bogus bonds are not sold through an investment firm or brokerage house, as legitimate bonds are. They also purport to represent ownership in a fictitious Hawaiian nation named Ko Hawaii Pae Aina, sponsored by the Hawaiiloa Foundation.
The companies pushing the bogus bonds, several claiming to be affiliated with Native Hawaiian sovereignty movements, are targeting Native Hawaiian homeowners and others who are facing foreclosure.
Have as many people show up in the Senate gallery tomorrow, APRIL 8, AT 11:30 AM in RED SHIRTS for the possible scheduling of HB 444 FOR DECISION MAKING. TANIGUCHI WILL NEED TO ASK FOR A WAIVER TO DO DECISION MAKING THAT AFTERNOON OR THURSDAY MORNING AT THE LATEST.
I’ve seen some bad politicians. But State Representative Joe Bertram stands out. Just last week, Bertram went to court to help a child predator avoid prison-time. A 52 year old man tried to lure a 14-year old girl over the Internet for sex. And Bertram didn’t think he should go to jail. That hits close to home… Polly was 12 when she was killed. As she was kidnapped from her room, she asked her killer to please not hurt her mom. In the worst moment, my brave little daughter thought of protecting others. Shouldn’t we expect the same from our elected officials?
In the report, Mr. Holmes questions Mr. Anderson's claim in a television advertisement that Anderson was former Councilwoman Barbara Marshall's senior aide for six years. Two former senior advisers to Marshall have also claimed this statement to be inaccurate.
In 1999, Mr. Holmes was unable to explain why he could not produce documentation of graduate and undergraduate degrees from the University of Iowa, despite his claim that he earned both a bachelors and master degree from the university. The University of Iowa has said that Holmes was a former student for three semesters, but earned no such degrees.
The recent U.S. Supreme Court decision regarding ceded lands should not be looked at in terms of “winners” or “losers.” Rather, it should serve as a clear reminder that we, as a community, must commit to reaching a fair and lasting resolution on ceded lands. Despite the disappointment being felt by some, the U.S. Supreme Court decision does not in any way affect our Administration’s ongoing commitment to the Native Hawaiian community.
Karen’s Law, HB819 HD2SD2 was heard in the Senate Judiciary and Government Operations Committee today. Chair Brian Taniguchi passed out Karen’s Law. However he amended the law to only include murder in the first degree.
As Pan Am Flight 830 descended toward Honolulu and passengers finished their breakfast, a blinding burst of light washed over them. And then, "BOOM!"
Flight plan filed by North Korea shows missile heading straight for Hawaii.
Plus latest updates from Japan, Korea, and NORAD....
BBC: North Korea had "ignored its international obligations, rejected unequivocal calls for restraint, and further isolated itself from the community of nations", Barack Obama said in a written statement. (And he stamped his feet....)
(No word on how close it came to Hawaii or Alaska)
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