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Monday, September 03, 2018
September 3, 2018 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 4:50 PM :: 592 Views

Akina: Don't Give up on OHA Elections

Hawaii Congressional Delegation: How They Voted September 1, 2018

News media fails to call out bogus “war crime” concerns

ILind: …The war crimes claim came up a few years ago when Sai pursued a quasi-legal claim on behalf of a Kauai man, alleging that being required to pay taxes constituted a crime of war by the local and federal governments. When I interviewed the supposed victim, he quickly backpedaled.  (See: “War Crimes on Kauai?“, Civil Beat, November 11, 2015.)

Having an elected official raise the silly “war crimes” argument is one thing. Heaven knows politicians are prone to doing some very silly things on a regular basis.

But, in my view, the news media has failed the public by not providing careful, critical, and sustained reporting on the issue, providing the facts to debunk these claims, which have largely been given a pass by reporters and editors.

Ruggles relies on an argument that has been peddled by David Keanu Sai, who claims to be the titular head of the long-lost Hawaiian Kingdom (although, of course, that’s a claim disputed by any number of rival claimants to the same Kingdom’s throne).

In its simplest form, Sai and his followers argue that the annexation of Hawaii by the United States was illegal because it was done via a joint resolution of Congress rather than a treaty of annexation. And, if the annexation was illegal, then it must be that Hawaii has been subject to an illegal military occupation for the past 120 years.

Of course, the U.S. Supreme Court–the final arbiter of what’s legal and what isn’t in the United State–long ago upheld the legality of annexation via the joint resolution route, so the argument quickly fails. And then there’s that inconvenient fact that island residents, including Hawaiians, quickly obtained U.S. citizenship and have wielded it now for 120 years, including half a century during which Hawaiians were politically allied with the Republican-controlled territorial government and dominated the patronage that it dispensed.

But that hasn’t deterred its proponents from continuing to misrepresent and selectively quote sources in their continuing quest for evidence of “occupation” along with some semblance of legitimacy.

Back in 2011, I commented on the role of the media and the lazy “he said, she said” reporting style in prolonging this lame debate.

Sai and others making similar arguments don’t get their fair share of serious criticism, constructive or otherwise. In part, there’s political correctness involved. People are just reluctant to be seen as publicly critical of things Hawaiian. Hawaiians ourselves are usually more inclined to shy away from open criticism and conflict, and just work around differences. It’s an island thing we grow up with. We live on an island, so don’t fight unless absolutely necessary. The media, along with most politicians, also seem to believe Hawaiian issues are another “third rail” of public life to be avoided.

The situation hasn’t changed in the intervening time.

In my view, this has some very unfortunate political effects.

First, it requires believers to accept an unhealthy dose of magical thinking, and to venture into a Trump-like world of alternative “facts” that ignore the political realities of more than a century.

Second, it demeans and trivializes the experience of contemporary victims of actual war crimes to compare their experience of violence, pillaging, and wars of occupation to that of Hawaii residents. There just isn’t a rational comparison to be made there.

And, third, it takes the legitimate debate over what should be done to build an entity capable of pursuing Hawaiian sovereignty and self-determination, and pushes that much needed discussion off to the sidelines, while vocal proponents of the “war crimes” and “annexation never happened” theories are allowed to take center stage to spout their views that taxes=war crimes, that the Kingdom lives on, and Hawaii is nothing more than a “fake” state.

Background: With Daddy up on Drug Charges, Hawaii County Councilmember Suddenly Tries to Join 'Hawaiian Kingdom'

read … News media fails to call out bogus “war crime” concerns

Real Scientist Debunks Latest Anti-Pesticide Hysteria 

KGI: …After reading Jessica Else’s “Honey Expose” in The Garden Island on Aug. 6, I am disappointed that you omitted the most salient details. Even more so, I am appalled that the editor of The Garden Island has published this substandard piece of reporting. A conclusion without supporting evidence is more than worthless. In this era of deception, you are sliding your way into “fake news.”

In your report, where do you tell us the credentials of the “Kauai scientists?” Not every scientist is qualified to conduct such a study. Nor do you cite a source of the “peer-reviewed study.” A reasonable thinker would want to see the report herself. As a scientist, I certainly want to see the hypothesis, the methods and materials, the data and the results. I am interested in reading the authors’ conclusions, but as a scientist, I would make my own conclusions based on the information presented….

Asking your readers to accept the conclusions of these six “Kauai scientists” without supporting data is equivalent to using the infamous “people say …” in order to defend a personal belief….

The most important fact I learned from my research on Roundup is that the source being tested can interfere with the chemistry of the test, frequently resulting in “false positives.” I am not aware that any test for glyphosate has been developed, validated and calibrated with honey as the source.

The omission of a link to the “study” you cite prevents the public from knowing the facts. Rather, you and The Garden Island, at best, have been duped by these “Kauai scientists.” Or worse, you and The Garden Island have given front-page, above-the-fold status to a shoddy piece of reporting that could, in fact, contain false information.

In this sensational “exposé” you ignore the controversy regarding the safety of glyphosate. A simple internet search reveals that the single agency (IARC) that classified glyphosate as a probable carcinogen was tainted by a leader who withheld data from the reviewers because of his own personal bias (https://www.forbes.com/sites/geoffreykabat/ 2017/10/23/iarcs-glyphosate- gate-scandal/).

Background: Kauai Eco-Hypesters Combine Hysterias: Bees, GMOs, Pesticides All-in-One

read … ‘Honey Expose’ lacked scientific credibility

Homeless begin Destroying Thomas Square Again

HNN: …Just weeks after reopening, problems have returned to the once troubled Thomas Square.

Saturday morning, police arrested a man suspected of destroying a parking meter on Victoria street with a hammer and then uprooting it from the ground.

Police said the 37-year old then fled with the coins from inside the meter. The suspect was then tracked down and arrested for habitual property crimes. He remains in custody.

The park has been a hot spot for crime and homeless campers. It recently reopened after undergoing major renovations that began in 2016.

City workers cleared the homeless, improved landscaping and installed a $250,000 statue of King Kamehameha III. A ceremony to dedicate the statue and officially reopen the park was held last month with dozens in attendance.

In April, police investigated a stabbing near the park in which the suspect fled.

And as far back as 2011, the park was home to the controversial Occupy Honolulu protesters who camped out for months to protest corporate greed.

The park was the scene of many battles between protesters and the city as many camping out were cited, fined and even arrested for obstructing a public space….

SA: Police located the man about an hour later and arrested him for investigation of habitual property crime.

More Homeless Mayhem?

read … Apply More Force

Petitioners want Haseko’s Ewa Beach lagoon opened to ocean 

SA: …A Change.org petition advocates that the predominantly freshwater lagoon dug into coastal Ewa Beach land at Hoakalei Resort be modified so that it’s more like the Ko Olina Resort & Marina lagoons with a big opening to the ocean.

Proponents of the idea claim such a change would resolve a problem that arose in May when the state Department of Health told the developer of the largely residential Hoakalei Resort, Haseko Hawaii Inc., that it faced fines up to $1,000 a day if people were allowed to continue swimming in the lagoon….

Hasheme Trevino, one of about 1,500 Hoakalei homeowners, wrote in a supportive petition comment that she was promised the lagoon as an amenity when she bought a home in 2015 but now considers the situation a mess.

“Help make it safe by forcing Haseko to do the right thing to open it up to the ocean,” she wrote.

About 480 people have backed the petition.

Erik Pegg, who bought a Hoakalei home last year, created the petition, in which he claims that nutrient-rich fresh water feeding the brackish lagoon could produce a toxic algae bloom and that the lagoon could become a breeding ground for mosquitoes that spread diseases such as dengue fever.

These issues, some Hoakalei residents believe, could become a liability when Haseko finishes developing the community and turns over ownership of and responsibility for the lagoon to the community association….

read … Petitioners want Haseko’s Ewa Beach lagoon opened to ocean 

Star-Adv: Can Progressive Activism Replace Labor Unions?

SA: …A generational shift has occurred, with younger workers entering the job force, a cohort less backed by a collective-bargaining unit and more left to their own devices.

This is what’s described with the breezy expression, “the gig economy.” There’s something to be said for the independence of the self-employed worker who is pounding the pavement in search of assignments for their sole-proprietorship business, or for the between-jobs worker who fills in the gap with ride-hailing work or other freelancing initiatives.

But it’s a painful slog, too, one without the security of health coverage or other conventional lures. Especially for those burdened by college debt and other financial challenges, this is no long-term solution.

One of the last robust sectors of organized labor, public-employee unions, was dealt a serious blow recently with the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Janus v. American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees.

Essentially, the court held that employees represented by the unions must receive the same negotiated wages, conditions and benefits, regardless of whether they pay union dues. This, the unions fear, will weaken their clout with their members, and as a bargaining power.

However, there is also a countervailing force in some sectors, with organized protests over minimum- wage increases and better conditions for public school teachers gaining support, even in some conservative states.

Just how this new dynamic will play out remains to be seen. Whether or not the workforce is able to re-establish middle-class standards will hinge on whether people can effectively advocate for policies to narrow the income gap.

Union or no union, that has to be a collective effort….

Reality: Progressive Activists are the Main Cause of Inequality

read … Editorial: Wages don’t keep pace with costs

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