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Monday, October 24, 2011
October 24, 2011 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 6:12 PM :: 10747 Views :: Kauai County News, DHHL, Maui County News, Congressional Delegation, Honolulu County News, Democratic Party, Hawaii State Government, Republican Party, National News, Development

49% Waste: Inspector General Slams Hawaii Navy Solar Projects

LifeNews: Lingle Faces Pro-Abortion Mazie Hirono in Hawaii Senate Race

Obama's Iraq Failure

Hirono to Maui News: Hawaii Can Lead on Wind Farms

Earlier, Hirono told The Maui News that she will support continued funding for research and development of alternative energy.

"Hawaii can be a lead on that," she said, adding that the state has many renewable energy resources, such as the sun, wind and ocean.

read … Wind Scam Maven

Abercrombie Administration Requests Fed Approval for Nation’s Most Limited Medicaid Hospitalization Coverage

Kaiser Health News: Arizona, which last year received national attention for stopping coverage of certain transplants for several months, plans to limit adult Medicaid recipients to 25 days of hospital coverage a year, starting as soon as the end of October.

Hawaii is going even further. In April 2012, it plans to cut Medicaid coverage to 10 days a year -- the fewest of any state, experts say.

Both efforts are pending federal approval, which state officials consider likely because several other states already restrict hospital coverage, among them Alabama (16 days), Arkansas (24 days), Florida (45 days), and Mississippi (30 days). Last year, Massachusetts started a 20-day per stay limit.

Private health insurers generally don’t limit hospital coverage, according to America’s Health Insurance Plans, a trade group….

Matt Salo, executive director of the National Association of Medicaid Directors, said the hospital coverage limits reflect how states are “desperately looking for any and all levers to reduce Medicaid costs,” without violating the law.

The federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services refused to comment on the hospital limits proposed by Arizona and Hawaii, saying they are under review.

read … Kaiser Health News

Billionaire’s Minion: “People need to break grip of private interests that control public policy”

Hilarious. This commentary in the Star-Advertiser is by Pierre Omidyar operative James Koshiba. A 5-billionaire is backing “Occupy Wall Street.” BTW Koshiba’s Kanu Hawaii first came to the attention of Hawai`i Free Press when Kanu—backed by Omidyar money--advocated a barrel tax which would jack up the price of oil to $100/barrel, thus increasing fuel and electricity prices for the poor and middle class.

Here’s the funniest line of all: "This 1 percent has made skillful use of lobbyists, political contributions and donated campaign labor to make Hawaii's government responsive to a few, while muffling the voice of the many."

Who could possibly be stupid enough not to recognize this column as a grotesque joke? –besides the Star-Advertiser editors….

read … More hypocrisy from the Star-Advertiser

Diplomat: APEC Traffic leads to Gnashing of Teeth

The Diplomat: On Monday, it took me about half an hour, and much weeping and gnashing of teeth, to circle around my hotel to find the parking lot. Turns out a preparatory meeting had just taken place there to plan events for the summit. The attendees were leaving at just the wrong time for my jetlagged self. Small wonder some of the locals are fretting over the dislocations likely to result from the event.

Meanwhile, road crews are working feverishly on Ala Moana Boulevard, one of the main thoroughfares linking Honolulu International Airport and downtown Honolulu with the resort area. The city has an ambitious agenda to all appearances. Crews are tearing up and resurfacing the road and replacing water mains, some of which date back a century. Given the scale of what they’re attempting – and the short window they have to accomplish it – I wish them luck. Landscaping crews are ripping up what looks like perfectly good grass and replacing it with fresh sod along the beach adjoining Kalakaua Avenue

read … The Diplomat

 

 

HECO’s Approach to Uncertainty

Henry Curtis: Decoupling is a complex concept. Many people in government and industrial readily admit they do not understand it. Decoupling can best be thought of as a code phrase meaning restructuring utility regulation to guarantee the utility a “reasonable” profit regardless of whether the utility is financially bloated or cost efficient, maintains grid reliability or doesn’t, and/or achieves or fails to achieve the goal of ending the use fossil fuel.

Big Wind is a code phrase for a costly, inefficient and reckless approach to getting off fossil fuel that will ultimately fail, leaving us stuck on fossil fuel, unless the people do something about it.

The utility got want it wants from regulators who adopted the decoupling mechanism. Now the utility and Governor Abercrombie are seeking to ram Big Wind down the throats of the citizens.

This public-private-partnership of government and Big Business was recently described by Steven G. Horwitz, Chair of the Department of Economics at St. Lawrence University in New York State.

Link: James Sinclair's Venn Diagram

read … HECO’s Approach to Uncertainty

CB: Is 2012 a repeat of 2002?

CB: In the summer of 2002, Democrat Ed Case was a four-term state House representative from Manoa who often challenged his party's leadership.

Republican Linda Lingle was a former Maui mayor and Council member who had run unsuccessfully for governor four years earlier and headed a political party mired in the minority.

And Democrat Mazie Hirono was the sitting lieutenant governor and heir apparent who had never lost an election since winning a seat in the state House in 1980.

By November 2002, however, Lingle would defeat Hirono in the governor's race and Case would be elected to the U.S. Congress. It represented a major shift in Hawaii's political landscape.

Nearly 10 years later, all three are together again — running for the same U.S. Senate seat

read … When Mazie Met Linda ... and Ed

GOP, Dems Benefit Equally From Hawaii's Big Donors

CB: The largest sum — $20,400 from a retired Kauai woman named Rosalie Danbury — went to Washington, D.C.-based DNC Services Corp., a Democratic political action committee, and President Barack Obama.

Four Republican donors gave a combined $41,410, just barely edging out the three Democrats who gave $40,400.

Some familiar names are on the list of Hawaii donors, including Abigail Kawananakoa, an heir to the James Campbell Estate who traces her ancestry to Hawaiian royalty. She gave $15,000 to the Republican National Committee. Honolulu dentist and philanthropist Lawrence Tseu gave $7,500 to the Hawaii Republican Party.

Oceanit CEO Patrick Sullivan gave $5,000 to Sen. Daniel K. Inouye's political action committee. He also gave $2,500 apiece to Reps. Mazie Hirono and Colleen Hanabusa, who are running for Senate and re-election in the House, respectively.

Here are the seven Hawaii residents who contributed the most between January and August….

read … Hawaii top Donors

Hooser Still Hinting at CD2 Run

“Mufi Hannemann will not go against the business and benefactors that have groomed and supported him for all these years. Of this you can be sure,” Hooser wrote. “So I face a choice, but you face one as well. You can help me do what is in my heart and soul which is to serve your interests in Congress, or you can choose the status quo and politics as usual.”

While Hooser is thus far avoiding sharing his fundraising records with the public, the Federal Election Commission requires that he will have to file paperwork showing the money he raised and spent to “test the waters” if he formally becomes a candidate.

Hooser’s Letter: 30 days

Hooser’s Putrid Heart: Sen. Gary Hooser campaign website linked to Holocaust deniers

Klompus: Mufi Hannemann Tries to Steal Linda Lingle's Thunder - Again

read … Hooser Still Hinting at CD2 Run

Governor, Media Director Both Penned Novels

CB: "Loveless in the Nam," according to the publisher, concerns the early life of Colonel Loveless, "a veteran of several wars and a highly decorated Army officer who, despite his acclaim, is revealed to be both self-centered and somewhat of a coward."

This week, Amazon ranked "Loveless in the Nam" at No. 1,037,211 on its best-sellers list. It sells for $23….

Amazon ranks Abercrombie’s "Blood of Patriots" at No. 2,942,642 on its best-sellers list.

Don’t forget the OTHER book: The Segregated Sisterhood of Neil Abercrombie and Nancie Caraway

read … Gov's Media Director Penned Vietnam Novel

Court: Kauai GOP Candidate should have not been Allowed Late Filing

Harry Williams filed his nomination papers for the 14th District seat, which covers Hanalei and Kapaa, two days after the July 20 deadline.

State election officials had allowed him to file late after Republican candidate David Hamman withdrew from the House race on July 19.

The officials told the Republican Party it had three days after the deadline to find a replacement candidate.

The Kauai Democratic Party filed a complaint seeking to declare Williams’ candidacy void, but Circuit Judge Randal Valenciano dismissed the complaint….

In the 10-page ruling today, a three-member panel of the Hawaii Intermediate Court of Appeals held that Hamman’s nomination papers were “void” because it wasn’t complete and should never have been accepted.

read … Kauai GOP

Obama Fishing Czar Divides Democrats

The next battle over President Obama’s job-killing regulations may take place on the Atlantic Coast, where fishermen, and the senators and congressmen who represent them, are voicing mounting frustration at the Obama administration’s “catch-share” rules for the fishing industry.

The Republican senator from Massachusetts, Scott Brown, on Saturday stood with fishermen in Gloucester and called on Mr. Obama to fire the administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Jane Lubchenco.

read … Obama Fishing Czar Divides Democrats

Styrofoam: Civil Beat reviews Military History in War on Restaurant Industry

In Hawaii, similar efforts to ban plastic foam stalled in 2008 and 2009.

Proponents of the ban say opposition from businesses convinced lawmakers to table bills that would have outlawed the containers.

“The industry came up and they made a big hoopla,” said Mike Victorino, the county councilman who proposed the ban in Maui in 2009.

Foes of the ban say switching from cheap polystyrene foam to biodegradable products will hurt businesses' bottom line.

"It’s a huge cost increase with very little benefit to the environment," said Lauren Zirbel, the interim director of the Hawaii Food Industry Association, which opposed the bans. Producing biodegradable alternatives can require agricultural land, she said.

Civil Beat searched the Hawaii Legislature’s archives for bills mentioning “polystyrene,” the chemical name for plastic foam. We found a handful of measures from the past few years.

Some attempted to ban polystyrene food containers outright. Others tried to set up studies on health risks and polystyrene alternatives. Today we’re focusing on the bans.

read … Strategic Review

Alleged Discoverer of ‘Pacific Garbage Patch’ speaks about new book

“One of the things that really impresses me now, is the fact that we’ve altered the habitat,” said Charles Moore, a self-described seafarer who inadvertently discovered what is now commonly referred to as the “Great Pacific Garbage Patch.”

“Not only are we killing things by ingestion and entanglement,” he said, “but we’re also creating a new world.”

Moore picked up a derelict fishing buoy that he’d collected from one of his expeditions to the “patch,” mid-way between Hawaii and the West Coast, and pointed to coral that had grown on it. “It’s a coral reef out in the middle of the ocean,” he said. Moore added that the fish typically associated with reefs in waters only 100 meters deep are now being found on these floating reefs out in the deep ocean.

The Long Beach resident had discovered the “garbage patch” on a voyage from Honolulu, Hawaii to Santa Barbara, Calif. in 1997.

Read … Discoverer of ‘Pacific Garbage Patch’ speaks about new book

Aala homeless leave, but leave mess behind

Too bad this enlightened and humane policy of forcing the homeless off the streets and into shelters will evaporate as soon as APEC leaves….

SA: Homeless tent city moved from Beretania Street sidewalk

read … APEC Ready?

Judge passes up plea deal, orders jail in welfare fraud

Saying he didn't believe a Kihei woman who said she was sorry after receiving more than $40,000 in welfare overpayments while running a shave ice business, a judge ordered her to spend four weekends in jail as part of five years' probation.

Julie Cosbey, 41, was ordered to pay $40,427 in restitution to the state Department of Human Services for the overpayments.

According to court records, she collected the benefits for herself and her three children from September 2008 to November 2010 while failing to report that her boyfriend, who is the father of two of her children, was living in her residence and receiving income.

read … When it’s the State’s money, they are suddenly tough on crime

Suit seeks to stop Halloween celebration

Maui News: A Native Hawaiian group has filed suit in 2nd Circuit Court seeking a restraining order to stop planned Halloween celebrations in Lahaina.

The organization Na Makua O'Maui and Kula resident Richard Dancil filed the suit Friday afternoon, claiming that Mayor Alan Arakawa improperly circumvented the county Cultural Resources Commission to move the event forward, and that staging the large, raucous Halloween party in a culturally sacred, historic site constitutes a violation of Native Hawaiians' civil rights….

In their court filing, the plaintiffs noted that the annual Lahaina Halloween party had been marketed as the "Mardi Gras of the Pacific," and that past events were "noted for offensive, (lewd) and lascivious behavior, drinking, nudity, profanity and the mocking of Hawaiians and their culture through inappropriate costumes and dress promoted both at the event and online."

It notes that Lahaina is a National Historic District, named by the Historic Hawaii Foundation in January as one of the most endangered historical places in Hawaii, and contains a number of culturally significant and sensitive sites.

"In fact, a sacred Hawaiian site known as the Moku'ula was used frequently for urination by Halloween participants," notes the complaint.

read … Lahaina

Stadium brawl shines light on problem with beer sales

SA: those who saw it call one of the worst brawls ever at a UH football game….

read … Beer

Bank of Hawaii 3Q Net Falls 1.7% On Weaker Revenue

Chairman and Chief Executive Peter S. Ho said Bank of Hawaii "continued to maintain strong expense control in light of the challenging environment."

read … BankoH

First Hawaiian's earnings fall as It runs out of Act 221 Tax Credits

First Hawaiian Bank's assets climbed to a record $15.4 billion in the third quarter, but the state's largest bank posted a 10.6 percent decline in net income due to an increase in income tax expenses.

The bank, scheduled to release its financial results today, said earnings fell to $50.4 million from $56.4 million in the year-earlier period because of reduced investment tax credits. Some of those tax credits came under the state's now-expired Act 221 for the bank's investment in its technology subsidiary that writes financial software.

read … Tax the Poor, Feed the bank


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