Dear Friend: October 8, 2012
I support Ben Cayetano for Mayor of the City and County of Honolulu. Here's why:
Leading through tough times. O'ahu (like all of Hawai'i) is entering a make-or-break third generation since statehood. The growth of the last two generations has brought many benefits but is not sustainable, not economically, fiscally, environmentally. At least not with business as usual, not if we want to preserve what makes our home special.
The specific challenges are formidable: assuring good jobs; containing urbanization and preserving our natural resources; completing over $10 billion in needed sewer, water, road and other infrastructure; affording core government services and escalating employee costs. All with more retirees to fewer workers and without crushing property tax, fee and other increases.
What's needed is leadership. Leadership that thinks clearly and realistically, gets the big picture, looks to the longterm, talks straight, asks questions and makes decisions. Cayetano will lead.
Reclaiming our government. From the Big Five to Land and Power in Hawaii, The Machine and Broken Trust, we've fallen prey too often to monopolizations of power acting for a few at the expense of the rest of us. Today's version among big business, big labor and big government is especially threatening to our ability to find workable and lasting solutions for all.
What's needed is independent leadership. That's not directed by and dependent on special interests, but able to consider different perspectives and break through obstacles. Cayetano will work with all, but for nobody but us.
Rejecting negative campaigning. Make no mistake: the big business/labor/government interests secretly funding the character assassination campaign against Cayetano coldly calculate that more voters will accept and believe it than will vote against it. If they succeed, you can guarantee that this will become the new standard for political campaigns in Hawai'i, and any dissenting ideas and candidates will be shouted down amidst similar attack campaigns. There's only one way to say no and that's to vote for Cayetano.
A word on rail, because I've long supported mass transit for O'ahu. But far more is at stake in this election than just whether this particular project is built at this time, and the choice between candidates on who will provide positive independent leadership to solve the challenges of a generation couldn't be starker. As well, I'm convinced that Cayetano's FAST plan is a reasonable alternative and that he will devote his administration to a workable, affordable, sustainable transportation solution for O'ahu.
A word to supporters of Mayor Carlisle, from one who's also supported him, believes he's done a good job, and hopes his days in public service are not over. If you did so because of the causes he championed like revitalizing our economy, running an efficient, affordable and honest government, and keeping special interests at bay, the only candidate now that will achieve our goals is Cayetano.
Make no mistake: the election for Honolulu's next Mayor presents two very different paths, not just for O'ahu but for all of Hawai'i, and not just for today but well down the road. I have no doubt that the Cayetano path will make things better for us and our children while the other path will make them worse.
Mahalo and aloha,