Sunday, August 29, 2010

Taking an extended hiatus


I will not be blogging for awhile.

I am in mourning for my daughter. I thank everyone for their kokua.

I will go back to blogging eventually. My heart is just not in it for now.


Sunday, August 22, 2010

Fundraiser planned for Donovan’s funeral

Fundraiser planned for Donovan’s funeral

This is my Daughter, SHanarae Kaulananapuaikaikamaolino DOnova, who passed away suddenly and tragically last week. We are desperately trying to raise the funds for her funeral, which has been schedualed for Aloha CHurch in Lihue, on this upcoming Friday from 12-5 . We are having fundraisers and asking the community for help. As you can see from this article, my daughter was an accomplished young woman, only 18 and was about to start a wonderful life.

We are humbly asking for any help you can give. Go to any bank of Hawaii to donate.

Mahalo, Anne, (mom), and her sister, Kanani (Seanne) Donovan RIchards.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Kukui‘ula Not Defferred-A Roundup Of Council Decorum

Council loosens Kukuiula project lease conditions

This was the Garden Island Newspapers take on the meeting yesterday. I have a completely take on the last several council meetings, and the last planning commission meeting I attended, and it has nothing to do with the issues that were being discussed. It has to do with the completely embarrassing way that commissioners and legislators have been acting lately. Especially in the Council Chambers.

Yelling, raised voices, essentially calling each other liars, whining, pompous statements, pandering, essentially acting like children, cutting off the general public when they are trying to speak,m shamelessly using public attorneys to help them as individuals to stop another councilmember from speaking, interrupting each other, making faces, walking out of the room, addressing the audience, to cut down another colleague. Its absolutely reprehensible the lack of decorum on this particular council. Yesterday was probably one of the lower points in council decorum history.

The funny thing is none of them see it. But from a general public perspective it looks terrible. I was there yesterday, and literally walked out of the room, be cause I could not stand watching them. It was an utter embarrassment. Other members of the audience were frankly shocked, embarrassed, our outright laughing at their total lack of respect for each other.

When I came back from picking up my daughter at school, guess what, they were still going at it with each other.

I testified yesterday in favor of a 2 week deferral for the Kukuiula bill. But for very different reasons that Joanne did. I feel that Council does everyone a disservice when we do not get complex issues explained in more common man terms so that we can understand the issues better. The Kukuiula situation is highly complex. Of course there is a reason for that. Its actually very simple, if you craft it simply, and state what it is for plainly. But they don't they make It so full of numbers, and other features that it actually seems a lot more complex then it actually is.

This, I have discovered after going to many of these meetings on and off throughout the years when my personal schedule allowed it, is a common maneuvering tactic to actually debase the public knowledge and awareness on issues. It is coupled with the fact that the general public was denied its rights to access from a petrified council who just didn't want to modernize enough to put documents online. That is being deferred to December. But we couldn't postpone Kukuiula 2 weeks so the general public could become aware of what the reasons were for Kukuiula wanting to move now on downgrading the buyback from 90 years to 25.

When Uncle Kaipo brought up the apples and oranges argument, frankly I was a bit disappointed. He compared the New Development in:Kalapaki by the Marriot to Kukuiula. However these units were already build out. they had a 80 year buyback and got theirs reduced. The state has much lower standards. However, Kauai is unique and Kukuiula is unique. And each development must stand on its own and has different criteria. You cannot compare the one with the other.

The issue I had yesterday with Jay Furfaros comments, were that a lot of the general public got to many meetings to fight for those conditions. He made it sound like it was just them that fought for it. Jay also called for a comprehensive housing policy. Well yeah, dud. But will poeple like myself, the meat abd bones of the general public be allowed to participate in that? Not likely. He talked alot about the general plan update. With my coalition being extremely active the last three years, think I will be invited to site at that table? not likely. In fact, they just don't give credit to any of the hard work and testimony that the general public fights for on any issue. In the end they also make it sound like it was all their idea. Sad, isn't it?

Some say I am arrogant, self serving and pretty pompous myself. Nope. I am just like the rest of the general public., We want some credit for having some good ideas. But wait....yesterday some miracles did occur.

Miraculously they did give me some credit for stuff. But it was a small gallery yesterday and they didn't have much to choose from. They needed to praise someone, and an ally somewhere. hence I got some praise on camera. It made me wonder why, since all the other times I have testified, when there were cooler people in the room I never got any. Oh well, guess I shouldn't whine about that, huh? Just be grateful,. take my pat on the head and you know the rest of it. It was a viscous hostile room yesterday, and made everyone in the audience uncomfortable. The planning commission wasn't much better. three against three, and there was some hot contention. But they act way better then the council does. They definitely have a lot more decorum. But not much.

Yesterday, when the issue of Bynums bill came up, it was blaringly apparent they needed to tweak their rules. So, I asked Peter to ask Uncle Kaipo if I could speak. TO his credit he let me. I felt like I was addressing a bunch of rowdy schoolchildren, and I very politely told them that they looked pretty bad when they acted like that., That they have to make equitable rules for doing legislation. If one document needs scrutiny before getting on the agenda, they all do. Not the ones you just don't like. I suggested that all documents should be scrutinized like the state draft bills are. I realized that if this were done, the County Attornies would have already given their approval, and then if they kept getting up and dissented, that would be on their side for not doing their job. Hence we cut the whole "County Opinion" need to essentially zero, since they already would have given it on each bill. I then told them that they need to understand that Tim was just trying to keep the ag package together and moving at the same time. There were three bills for Ag that did not move forewords with the others. Then Uncle said, ok, well I am calling a recess so that they can be read individually if any councilmembers have a problem with what you think is the illegality you can just vote no to put it on the agenda. Darryl was dead set against it and voted no. the rest, voted yes so the three bills went on the agenda. It is anyones guess if they will move through before the next council.

Another point I brought up is if the county attorney doesn't give his opinion in a certain amount of time, a bill automatically moves to the agenda. which is fair, since Tim asked a year ago for it to be scrutinized. Another thing is that at the state level, both staff and the attorneys approve and ok bills, before the Representative or Senator takes it to the floor. It seemed to rub both Tim and Lani the wrong way. You could see the mistrust of both in their opinions. I think Tim was feeling pretty beat up by the council yesterday. And that brings me to my biggest issue with running for council.

If you don't have a spine of steel, don't run. That means, be like Derek. Now Derek, through this whole thing yesterday was calm, cool and collected. But you could hear it in his voice. He was speaking slowly, clearly and politely. That was to keep himself in check. I am sure he was steaming on the inside but he kept his decorum. And I entirely applaud him for that. Dickie as well, did not engage in the hatefest that was going on there yesterday. However, having a spine of steel does not mean straight up, arguing with each other, loudly and rudely to prove how "tuff" you are, and how you can "hold your own" on the council. All that does, is show how easily ruffled you are, and you can't control your emotions. That does not make you come off as a candidate that can "hold your own" and has a "spine of steell". That just makes you looki ridiculous.

As I told Jay yesterday. "You know I miss the days when we the audience members were the rabblerousers, and you people were all calm, and professional and just let us rant. Now, its us that are calm, and you are the ranters." He got a good chuckle out of that, and agreed with me that the council had acted in an undecorous manner. Then, in his closing statements, he thanked the council, for "working together and acting in a decorous manner", Welcome to Kauai politics. Its do as I say, not as I do.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Dismantling the Mufi Hype

Breaking up the hype about Mufi. In this amazing video, Mufi claims his pride in his grandfather, who ceded two islands in Samoa to the US. So, how can Mufi Hanneman be in support of anything for Native Hawaiian Sovereignty? He can't. Because his values are to cede and deed lands to the US. That is his families heritage.

I will grant that Mufi has amazing accomplishments in his life, and I applaud him for that. However, after attending Harvard and being a Fulbright scholar, you would of thought that the man would have been more sensitive to the needs of the poor and homeless. Yet his policies have been cruel and heartless towards the homeless in his area.

You would have thought also, having attended Harvard and been a Fulbright Scholar that Mufi would have been more about the equal rights of others, such as gays. But Mufi has actively campaigned against gay rights.

Mufi is a Mormon. This religion cannot legislate fairly because of its many prejudices and personal philosophies. I know.; I am an ex-Mormon. I know what the Mormon church stands for. And it isn't equality and Justice for all.  The Mormon Church is an ultra conservative right leaning institution that only in recent history has allowed people of color to be full members of their church. That is a fact that cannot be denied. The Mormon Church has heavy influences in Samoa and Tonga, and fully most of the islands there are Mormons.

Hypocrisies about in his statements. He says that the people of Oahu gave a mandate in favor of the rail. However we know that there is large opposition to it in Honolulu and is as contentious as our own bike path has been.

In Kalihi where there has been a crack down against housing residents and curfews against other ethnicity's other then Samoans, (such as Tongans, the hereditary enemies of the Samoans, and others such as Micronesians) one can see where one sided tribal loyalties may significantly affect his ability to rule on matters regarding other Polynesian people such as Tongans, Cook Islanders and Micronesians. He has a new CD out in many languages including Hawaiian (Olelo). However, it is the University of Hawaii dialect. Something that many elderly speakers, and no Niihauans can understand well or at all.  Which shows no sensitivity to the outer Islands, especially Niihauans, who being very conservative Christians would probably like him./ If they could understand what the CD said. But his concern is not for the poeple of Niihau understanding him, obviously.

As far as Native Hawaiian rights go, Mufi has clearly stated that he is from a heritage that supported annexxation to the US. So how can Native Hawaiian rights get a fair deal under Mufi?  Since he is proud of the fact that his family ceded and happily the lands under their stewardship to the US, rather then continuing the heritage of the chiefly class. In Tonga, and in Samoa, many chiefs did not sign away the lands. That is why we have American Samoa, and Samoa, and Tonga separated. They still have their chiefly class.

Mufi claims to be  Democrat. Yet on many issues, He has sided more with Republicans then with Democrats, and has caused much division within the Democratic party because of it. His policies are not progressive, and he has proven that he legislated and makes decisions on issues based on his political and religiousbeliefs and does not accept the separation of church and state. This is  blaringly evident in his very vocal and public opposition to Bill 444. He is a vocal opponent of gay rights, and supports his religious belief's over the freedoms of others. On the environment Mufi has only done lip service to this, and was in favor of the SUperferry not doing an EIS before coming to the outer islands. This flew in the face of logic, and eventually the law. Thus the failure of the  Superferry of which he was a strong supporter. He had the audacity to make sttements here on Kauai that he would bring the Superferry back. It did not get a kind response from the audience. Which just goes to show how completely far removed he is from the feeling and sensitivities of the outer islands.

He has designed a railway system that has caused deep division among the people of Oahu. Will he want one here on Kauai" That is their biggest problem I have with Mufi. His Oahu ego centrism. Mufi, in this video says nothing about the outer islands. Not one single word. And I believe that is how he would Govern as well. From Oahu, for Oahu, by Oahu, all for Oahu. This is the single biggest issue facing outer island people today. The fact that we do not want to be ruled by Oahu any More, and are frankly sick of Oahu treating our islands like their back yards, and like second class citizens. I see nothing in Mufis record, or this video that changes my mind. Because he doesn't even talk about the other islands. Only Oahu.

Democratic leaders in name only who push a conservative Republican agenda. So, what really happens, is that Mufie and Dukie are both the same.
He stated, is that he is the first "native born" Mayor in 40 years.  That may be true, but he wouldcertainlynot be the first Native Born Governor. So that is a glass ceiling that has already been broken. I want a native born Governor that  isn't a coconut sell out. That's what I want.

What is really surprising, shocking and saddening to me, is that here we have two native sons, handsome Polynesian men with amazing educations and all of the opportunities in the world to really show how much about equality, equity, fairness and Love of land, love of people they can be. Yet, these two have chosen to both go to the conservative agendas. And the last candidate standing, although a bit shorter is a Caucasian gentlemen who has shown more understanding of what really matters to most local people then these two has. That truly makes me upset. It seems as if being a front for Conservative Christian White Jihad Domestic Terrorists in Hawaii has been the way of local politicians too long. To the point where it has become an embarrassment and a travesty.t

The election of Neil AMbercrombie would send a strong message to local politicians. The days of having to be conservative, and pander to white special interests so that they can put a local face on their prejudiced and racist agendas is no more. Those days are over. You can now really do, speak, say and be the way you really want to be. And Neil AMbercrombie not being and egocentristic person bent only on the interests of Oahu and being in favor of equal rights for all, and far more sensitive to native Hawaiian rights then Mufie or Duckie is, in my book a huge wake up call for both of them. This must transcend race, religion and familial alliances. This must be a logical decision that will not dishearten the people any more. The people can't take anymore. We need a champion that will fight for US.

And that for me is certainly not the conservative, gay bashing ego centristic all for Oahu Mayor of Honolulu.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Kuku'iula 90 year reduction -Paanau low income hostage

Kukuiula project redux(garden Island Newspaper)

Other potential "hostage" projects
more here:More potential "hostage" projects

My Take is here:

Well, the council gave Kuku'iula project the green light to go from a 90 year by back to a 25 year by back. Although the reasons are masterfully convoluted and brilliantly confusing as they are meant to be, and the average human cannot even begin to comprehend the rollercoaster ride of rates and incomes, and means and the market, even the council I suspect, the original bargainer is not buying it.

Joanne Yukimura, slightly a bit tarnished in my eyes due to the whole TVR issue, has gotten herself back into my good graces. We have had many discussions about housing, and she is a member of my Kaua'i Fair Housing Law Coalition. It was Joann who helped to set conditions for Kukuiula in the first place. What she has always tried to make me understand, is that we really do need all types of housing on the island at all income brackets. I will say that Joann has helped me to understand the intricacies of how that all works and makes things better for everyone.

When you are on the very bottom of the economic scale like I am, it is hard sometimes to comprehend these concepts. But Joann at least was able to shed some light on this issue for me.

That is why when I testified on this issue as late, many times representing the Coalition I have been hesitant to say no to it. Why, do you ask?

For a very simple reason. Paanau Village expansion project lies in Kukuiulas hands. If I want the low income housing finished for Kauai's neediest residents, then I can't go around jumping down their throats for anything. If I want the people to get a better living wage and nicer looking housing, I can't rock the boat. Even when the boat is questionable and has leaks in it.

Now, is this right or ethical? Have I sold out? Nope. This is politics. Plain and simple. This isn't about housing. However, for me, some players involved in Kukuiula are Friends. Would they lie to me? Well, that's up for debate. Do I have to see a conspiracy theory in everything? Contrary to popular belief, no. DO I completely understand this whole buy back option exception? Nope. But I do understand that if they are going to complete Paanau expansion, they need, in their minds to get a break somewhere in the original conditions and this is the break they want, otherwise funding for Paanau may not happen.

So what do I do? I trust Kukuiula? Not exactly. I watch, wait, see what happens. They have told me that they are ready to start hiring people. Good. I will wait, watch and see what happens. DO any of us really know how this whole buy back thing will play out? Nope, not even Kukuiula, I suspect. Do I completely understand the need to provide housing for well paid managers? Yes, and I will tell you why.

It just goes to prove that we have a housing crisis here, where even middle management needs affordable housing. that says a lot to me. Do I agree with Joann's opinions on this? One hundred percent. DO I agree with Kukuiula? I have too. They hold the keys to the doors of Paanau. Does that put me between a rock and a hardplace? Absolutely. I have already stated my opinions that I want the housing to stay in the hands of the people that need it most. That I do not like the 90 year exemption down to 25 years. However do I have a choice, and put Paanau Low Income housing in jeopardy? No choice there.

But what I am hoping for is that every one will watch this situation carefully, and a  new council can go ahead and redux this again, and try to get back some of the ground that was lost on this issue. But that would require a mandate of the people to get into the voting booth and vote in some new blood that could tackle the double speak and confusing jargon, get it into simple speak for the rest of us, and make sure that developers cannot hold housing for housing hostages again.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Princeville Ag Gated Home in 25 Acre Tree Farm

So, according to the video, the emphasis was on the "Ocean View", and also, there was absolutely nothing said about the supposed agricultural nature of the "tree Farm", which was pretty much planted all around the house, and served more as a privacy blocker, since the forest was very close to one of the windows. Will be very interesting when the supposed tree s are harvested, in oh about 10 to 15 years.

Another thing that gave me red flags, was the price, a million and a half bucks and also, the comment from the realtor which reads:

@lehuastouch Aloha - yes it is a unique opportunity!  Listed this week at $1,050,000 - it looks like they'll be receiving an offer soon. If it's of interest, time to write an offer and include time to visit and inspect! Not sure the exact kind of trees - believe they are hardwood. I took a video of the drive into the home, and can email it to you. "Princeville Ag" is a country estate subdivision with a homeowners assocation and building guidelines. Please call or email for more info. Mahalo!
Susie4Kauai 1 week ago

SO, did this give you red flags yet? This is exactly the type of thing we wish to stop here on Kaua'i If you agree with me, then please, help to vote in people that will stop this sort of blatant abuse of our ag lands. Planting a "tree farm" is a misnomer, when your trees are 10 to 15 feet away from a million dollar house. The harvesting operation for trees such as this, and also you can also see that the trees are planted more as a bush line or windbreak. As a former tree farmer on a 50 thousand acre plantation and irrigater, I can tell you that for these trees to be harvestable, in about 10-15 years, you would have to cull about 9 out of 10 sapling trees on this property, or the trees would not be able to grow properly, and they would be sucking up exceptional amounts of soil and water from the soil layer, thus denegrating the soil badly.

Further, if you take this to its more logical conclusion, I defy the millionaire that lives here to be happy when workers start cutting down the trees 10 to 15 feet from the window.

Rest assured, the clearing will begin soon with a new prospective owner. The reason? Subtle little hints throughout the video, hint at clearing out some of the trees to get a better look at that ocean, of which you can only get a peek, and the forest (Not the trees for farming, it is called a forest), is kinda in the way.

This land will get the right to clear the land of a majority of its trees, because in order to be harvestable, it will have to be.  Clever, huh? I also love how this is booked to a prospective owner. Not as a farm, with a working operation but as a " country estate subdivision with a homeowners assocation and building guidelines".

Uh huh. 

Kaua'iCounty manager proposal killed-question will not be on the ballot this election cycle

County manager proposal killed

It is a no brainer that the proponent of this ideology and bill will bring it back up to this commission until it gets on the ballot. The question for me is, everytime some group doesn't like the Mayor, or can't get their way all the time, this issue will continue to resurface. Do I think that if there was a County Manager instead of a Mayor things would change? Not likely. The Mayoral staff is actually the defacto manager now. In the current case, that would be Gary Heu.

One of the problems that I have with this, is much like our Police Chief situation, the need to hire a good head hunter, ect, and look for someone outside of our community seems to be the underlying sentiment and impetus for this bill. I however, would rather see local talent to fill the slot. Many newcomers to our island, do not yet understand that this is not the mainland, and that Kauai is very unique among our island chain. Those who argue that this island is rife with corruption, and a "local " mentality, or a "plantation mentality".

Well, if you aren't local, or have never been here when the plantations were thriving you cannot understand the meaning of those words. When people move here the first thing they want to do is change things. They think they have all the answers and they can do things better. People talk about corruption and the ineptness of our county government. Well of course.

When I see these sentiments, I just cannot help but feel that it absolutely smacks of a kind of antagonistic attitude towards local people, being essentially inept to run their own affairs, and we must need someone with "an education and experience" to run our affairs. That pompous attitude is very thinly disguised racism. I believe that we have enough intelligent and talented individuals right here3, homegrown on the Garden Island. I do not see the need to go outside to manage our system.

If people do not like the way things are being done, then make your voice heard in the voting booth, or attend meetings, make phone calls, or email testimony and write letters. Start a blog. DO something about it. But I truly see this issue as a "newcomer, locals can't govern themselves" issue. Frank,ly I find the arguments put forth as rather offensive. Now to the mainland mentality, that is those that think we fuss about nothing, and then don't fuss enough about other things they fail to understand the uniqueness of Kaua'i. It is for that exact reason that I do not feel that at this time we need a County Manager form of Government.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Outing Myself- Pumpkin Crunch and the Kauai Beer Summit:The Backstory

Yes, it is time to out myself. Wherever you see the words pumpkin crunch lately, there I am, or there I have been. Why? What is the reason for this?

Well, for one thing, pumpkin crunch as made by the one and only Suzy Tasaka of Hanalei is really the only Pumpkin Crunch I would jump of a cliff on fire for.

So what really is this whole "pumpkin crunch" thing all about?  And what in the world does it have to do with the now famous Kaua'i Beer Summit?

Well lemme tell ya........

It really all started with the Kauai Beer Summit, and not pumpkin crunch. The insinuation was that Dickie Chang, a truly sweet soul, who is really very genuine and a total innocent babe in the woods as far as the council goes was visited by three of the county attorneys who brought beer to his house and they all sat down to talk about the TVR bill. Now, at first flush I was pretty mad about that, and fired off a lot of crazy postings on my patient friend Joan's blog, who puts up with my visiting craziness on her blog whioch I think is very sweet of her.

Now it seems that we all seem to coagulate, er I mean cohabitate er, um..I mean descend upon Joans blog for some reason. So all of the good action always happens over there. Anyways, after thinking about the beer summit the night before the meeting I got this crazy idea of saying at the mike "I would only change my vote for pumpkin crunch."  So of course I said it. I am a little nuts, as everyone knows. There was a smattering of nervous laughter in the room after that.

But during the breaks, in the parking lot ect, the county attorneys and me kept joking back and forth. They would say.."Hey I will bring some pumkin crunch!", and I would answer "You better make it a big pan of it!". SO, it sort of became this joke about how I would sell my soul and change my mind for pumpkin crunch.

So, the whole "pumpkin crunch" thing, is really saying: I will only sell my soul for pumpkin crunch. Beer won't work with me. I need food to feed this big belly of mine to change my mind." Hilarious but true. However, I forgot to tell them that it has to be made by hand, by Suzy Tasaka for it to work. See I left that part out.

So what am I really saying? You can't buy me off with anything. Including pumpkin crunch.  I don't change my mind that easily.

So, as the days have worn on after the whole TVR controversy, I keep using the whole pumpkin crunch analogy in my posts, signing off with things like, "gotta go, my pumkin crunch is ready", "gotta go, I gotta wash the pumpkin crunch pan", or to my many detractors and critics,l "hands you a slice of pumpkin crunch with a smile."

It has sort of gotten a bit viral on Joan's blog. So I thought I would explain the inside joke here on my blog. Maybe it might make its way over to Joan's blog. Who knows. So that's the inside joke. I can't be bought for beer, or even pumpkin crunch.....unless Suzy Tasaka brings it to my house with a 6 pack. That's a triple threat. Might work. But probably not.

As for the Kaua'i Beer Summit, Dickie did change his vote from a "no" vote to a "yes" vote. But he did have serious reservations about doing so. I think he might be with my idea now, and ask for pumpkin crunch next time instead of beer.

And a side note for all of you who are still wondering if it is worth being an activist on Kaua'i, I will share with you the video that keeps me pumped up for the fight!

Christina Aquilera's "Fighter."

Also, don't forget to sign the petition to take to the Mayors office, to ask him to VETO the TVR bill.

Gotta go. My pumpkin crunch looks so lonely all by itself in the fridge. I am gonna go keep it company.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Dear Mayor Carvalho, VETO the "TVR DUE PROCESS" Bill-a letter

The Honorable Mayor Bernard Carvalho
The Citizens of Kaua'i
Dear Mr. Mayor

We humbly implore you to veto the current TVR "Due Process" bill before you.

We realize that TVR's that wish to be "grandfathered" into an exempted class may or may not have been legal. There are various legal opinions on this. However, we also stand by the State Attorney General Opinions in which it has been stated that overnight uses shall not be allowed, and this applies to TVR use, which is not considered an accessory to a farm use, because there is no farming occurring on the properties.

We have heard numerous testimonies from TVR owners that they cannot farm their land, which is why they need to have expensive, palatial mansions costing up to 10,000 dollars a week, and in some cases up to 9,000 dollars a night, for rent on the property to "afford" to "support" their families.

We beg to differ, Sir. Local farmers who bought agricultural land, and who have been farming their lands did not put up palatial mansions on them, and are also struggling to support their families. They did not engage in this questionable activity and farmed their lands. It is highly unfair to favor one class of people over another on land zoned exactly the same. Therefore if you give an exemption to the TVR owner over the law abiding farmer what will that do to the character and dare we say it the very fiber and soul of this island?

Further, Mr. Mayor many politicians and public officials have stated over and over again about the importance of "sustainability", and the "promotion" of sustainable practices on our island. How can the practice of TVR accommodations on agricultural lands be seen as sustainable? There is numerous testimony on record from TVR owners, that they landscape and garden their property in one breath, but then the next statements are clearly to the effect that they cannot farm their land because it is unsustainable for food production. We find this to be highly suspect given the fact that Kauai has sustained food production for centuries virtually over its entire surface and the soil is easily amended. If you can grow landscape plants and grass you can also grow crops.

Further these TVR owners claim to be a major source of employing people. However, we submit to you Sir, that these jobs are menial, and unsustainable. No one working for these TVR owners will be able to afford land themselves due to the fact that the owners are driving up land prices on Kauai to astronomical proportions, even in the current down economy.

Further, Mr. Mayor the creation of Visitor Destinations, or VDA were created for just such types of commercial activity that caters to the tourism industry. These types of operations take directly away from Hotels, smaller lodging facilities and other commercial operations that are operating legally out of the VDA.

It is inconsistant, and frankly just bad policy to allow some to obey the law, and others to be exempt from it.
By allowing certain businesses to operate certain types of operations in certain areas where other operations catering to the exact same type of clientelle (IE Transient Visitors) to not have an equitable opportunity to secure those clients is unfair. It hurts all of those businesses and their employees, and shows favoritism.

Also, another point is the issue of the matter of lawsuits against the county should these operators not be allowed their "due process", however we submit to you that not only will operators sue if they are not accepted and allowed to continue to operate, but that there will be numerous counter suits filed.

The best course of action we believe, would be to veto this bill, and go to the state legislature for clarity and a bill that would be far more equitable to all concerned.  This current bill has had to be amended often, and has caused a large rift in our community. We beg you to reconsider picking up the pen that allows this, and refuse to sign this bill into law, then allow for a much better process and bill to proceed in the future.

The citizens of Kaua'i.

Friday, July 30, 2010



Here is the website I have made today.

The petition and letter to the Mayor is all there.

Please download, share, and spread the word on this.

Everyone sign the petitions, email me and I will arrange a pickup.

Signwaving to be announced.

Lets stop feeling frustrated and do something.


There are only three for now. I will be making the last four endorsements next week.

They are:

Derek Kawakami
Kipukai Kuali'i
Nadine Nakamura

Here are the websites of these fine candidates. Please cast your vote in the direction of these Kaua'i residents, who for me, have demonstrated the worthiness to sit on the council.

Why am I endorsing these three candidates? I do not give out my endorsements easily. I have specific criteria. One of them is that they have to have an even personality, a calm demeaner, without appearing cold, and they have to have roots to this island in some way. Another criteria I have is flipping and flopping. I do not like wishy washy candidates, who copy opthers rhetoric, or talk about the great "I am", or have a pompous attitude, or who do not listen to other peoples ideas even though they may make sense, but conflict with their own. I do not like candidates who cause dissension and disharmony and who try to take the credit for everything, and act like spoiled Divas on the council.

For me, Derek, as a freshman Council member has behaved admirably well,. He has not displayed any of the red flag behaviors I have seen others display when on the council that would point to a bad policy maker. He has done excellently well, and he is fair and balanced. He can disagree with you without making you feel like you are beneath him or not as good as he is. Others, sad to say display extrfmely pompous behavior, and think only they have the good ideas, and yours are really worth nothing. That is why DEREK KAWAKAMI is getting my vote.

Kipukai for me, is a no brainer to be on the council. Besides carrying one of the most noble names on our island, and being a direct lineal descendents of one of the highest Pio Lines Ali'i Mo'i of our island, (King) by the name of Kuali'i, who in history actually has the credit of being the first to actually unite the islands BEFORE Kamehameha did it, Kipukai has all of the birthright of his famous ancestor, and truly is an ali'i in the old style of the word.

He is highly intelligent, exceptionally even tempered, and listens to others opinions. He actually attends important meetings and has spoken out on the issues and does not have a pompous bone in his body. He treats everyone with respect, and does not mock poeple or raise his voice to people or try to shut them down when they may express an opposing viewpoint. I see Kipukai as someone who truly can work with everyone, and still create legislation that will actually be for the good of Kauais people.

Nadine is a fresh female face for the council which we sorely need with the evacuation of Lani Kawahara on the council. Although the council chambers has had a hard time keeping its female council members inside it, I believe that Nadine is finally the fresh face that can take the heat in the council chambers and keep at it for as long as the voters are willing to keep her there. She has an exemplary history and is even tempered an not pompous or a Diva in any way. She has a vast store of knowledge and is an empathetic person. She is not wishy washy, or a flip flop. She is confident without being stuck up. I support Nadine whole heartedly.

So please, give these fresh and deserving faces an opportunity to truly serve the people of Kauai.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Of TVR's, Farm Worker Housing, and other strange tales of Kaua'i

HERE IS THE ULTIMATE AGRICULTURAL LAND TVR-GOES FOR up to  TEN THOUSAND BUCKS A NIGHT. yep. Should these guys get a permit under the new TVR Bill? Evern if these people are the nicest people in the world, still this isn't right. Honestly. Come on, people. If you have this much money, then you have the money to do farming RIGHT. Big operation. Lots of empolyees, read: FARM WORKERS. NICE accomodations for your farm laborers. big contracts with major food companies. Hydroponics. If your landscape plants work well, then you can grow crops on your land. When they purchased this land, it was zoned ag. No excuses. Lease out the land. Something. Anything. Build yourself a nice home. OK, whatever. BUT NOT THIS!! THIS IS A PLANNED USE, ie they bought it with the intention of using it for THIS, and not ag. That's my problem with it. Plus, the name is absolute GIBBERISH. "Palama Huna Hale?" Huh? No such thing as huna. New age garbage. Palama? As in 

Palama 1

Definition: A membrane extending between the toes of a bird, and uniting them more or less closely together. , which is NOT a Hawaiian word. Or is a Hindi word of some sort? Or is it named after the district of Palama in Honolulu?  get the picture yet? Gibberish.

And here it is: The luxury vacation rental on the north shore, that goes for 10,500 dollars a WEEK! Oh yeas, we NEED this on Kaua'i! Absolutely! This is the future of Kaua'i! This will make us all propepsrous. Hey don't be hatin cuz I can get a house for vacationin and you can't!! take a look at this abomination, here at:, Yeah, here, take our land, and make 10,500 bucks a week off it. Enjoy. Yeah. Sure. Aloha Spirit, brah!

Here is their availability calender. They seem prety booked up. Lets count the money shall we? From now, until November, so far this year looks like they will be making 80 grand. Of course that doesn't include the first part of the year. I would say probably when the bookings are all down and all of the dough has been counted pretty cose to a cool million, since the potential is 40-50 thousand a month.

You might be surprised at what you see on this "availability calender".  Is this property on "ag land". Probably not. BUT is this a TVR outside of the VDA? Forget that. Is it just morally and ethically wrong? My ohana is from this area. They dont charge 10,500 dollars a week to live there. In fact many of my ohana regularly took in people with no place to stay and never charged them anything. Some of them grew up to be real estate agents in Hanalei. Think about that. The surrounding properties in this area actually are inhabited by some very poor and humble poeple, who would offer you the shirt of their backs, a hot meal and a spot on their counches. Just think about that for a second. And then you wonder just why some of us fight against these things. ALoha spirit my a$$

For my take on yesterdays meetings, PLEASE SCROLL DOWN HERE:

Well, it was a very long day, (and night) at the council chambers. If you ever want to know what going through a marathon ride of emotions, ranging from mental exhaustion, elation, fear, anger, indignation, happiness, hopefullness, forgiveness, and every other emotion there is just go to one of these meetings. You will be physically and mentally exhausted afterwards, trust me. I know I was. I wonder why I do this. I must be a glutton for punishment, a complete idiot, or completely insane, or all three. Frankly after waking up this morning with a Council Meeting Hangover, commonly known as a CMH, in council-speak, I think I am all three most definatly.

IT was really Kauai political theatre at its best. In its strange incubatorial world of nether reality we live encased in this bubble of a hub engrossed in influencing each other both on and off camera, a nd as usual, the audience area serves as the hub for the "shadow council", as we cut our deals amung ourselves, try to influence our opponents into common sense and out of their own opinions and self interests, and other strange alternative reality activities.

Our audience area is a strange sea of flotsom and jetsom, punctuated by a few leaky rowboats, and Cruise ships all maneuvering and banging heads in the same salty water of acidic verbal discourse thinly disguised by politeness while gritting your teeth from the inside.

Occasionally, councilmemebers attempot to swim into our turbulent waters and navigate through our lines of communication often, I am sure regretting their attempt to do so without water wings, or a good inflatable. We, for our part, are like Sirens, calling from the rocks to cajole our helpless victims into the water, to swim the dangerous currents that are the Citizen Gallery while the beleagered staff actually tries to keep everyone happy.

Another great sideshow is the Bull Pen of attornies which is always fun to watch if the rhetoric at the mike on either side of the bar gets a little boring. Whispering, postulating, getting up and down, getting their turns at the mike, which they relish almost as much as we do. We really can't complain, as we are all part of the same theatre group, and everyone has their parts down to a "t". We also do our share of getting up, and down, grabbing mysterious peices of paper scribble down as much as the attornies to, in a beautiful ballet of futility at times. But we have learned the ploys, the plays, the eye contacts, hand signals. When you have been in this Theatre of Fools long enough, you learn well.

It is always facinating as the camera gets turned off, and the breaks go through we exoplode, or implode into a cackling sea of hens where we really spark up the charm, or the ploys, or acts of sheer desperation. When the cameras go on again, at least 7 new alliances have been made, and 126 new deals have been struck. All within a blink of an eye. Its real Twighlight Zone stuff. Facinating to participate in.

So it was yesterday,the play played itself out, with calls for recusals, and the bringing up of infamous blog posts, and a litany of people claiming they can't farm and the only way to save themselves was by having TVR's. Then there were rthe assurances that the issue would be looked at sternly by the planning commission. Then there was the presentation that frankly pissed me the hell off. I do not beleive that anyone who has to so ostentatiousely show off there wealth does not have an emotional compensation problem.

The strangest thing to me was that we were all sort of in a dream trance there. Some internalized among each other. Those of us who were rowing the leaky little row boats in the seas of contention knew that we could not plead our case to change the outcome. It was a done deal. Frankly I was already into the "kill em with kindness " mode, and shook the hands of the ones who were seen as the biggest abusers and problems in the TVR's issue. Why? I wanted to see them as human beings. To look into their eyes.  To dfind out what makes them tick. To see how to work on these poeple. TO get them to see the other side.  Wel,l, I am sure its a pipe dream. But idiots and fools always hope for impossible thijngs. Maybe I don't have the spine of steel I like to think I have. Maybe I like to think that anyone can see reason somehow. THe onwe thing I did get to say is that how can you expect me, from my lowest rung to come here and support you on the highest rung when I myself have no support from you? WHere is my motivation! Is that selfigsh and heartless? Perhaps. But then remember this is a play, theatre, a dance.

ANd then the curtain falls. Reality sets in. There are repercussions to two bnills that passed yesterday. Tvr's on Ag lands. The opportunity for "fairness" and to "plead their case", and to have "due porocess". The problem is the people of Kauai do not feel like they have any of those things. The perception is that there is coprruption, back door deals, all sorts of things going on and that the poeple will always lose. That there is no hope. That it is over for Kauai.

Then, we got the farm worker housing bill. For me, that was a victory. Because it was caused by the housing crunch caused by the very same TVR situations. Those that claimed to be doing ag would now have to prove it. What better way, then to need farm worker housing. What better testament to the fact that all of these rich peoples mansions have caused homelessness, a lack of housing, and the very need to build housing for their help. Look at Kukuiula they have to have housing for their middle management earning a decent living wage because their is no housing. Look at the homeless issue. Neglecting to build housing for the minimum wage earners has caused an absolute nightmare.

What better situatioln for the massahs on the hill. Now they will need to build housing for their slaves as they work the feilds. People who will never be able to afford their own land or own their own house, or aI dare say every have their own TVR, because now there will be no more. Now, these people will have a monopoly on the TVR market. Is that fair? Due Process? Equitable? Becasue local farmers followed the law, weren't greedy, and  didnd't build themselves a ten bedroom mansioin and charge 50 thousand dollars for a one week stay there, we should somehow be sympathetic, empathetic, and helpful to them. Why?  Will they be gifting the little laborers any land? Permanent housing? Nope. Because the farm worker housing bill does not allow for that. All of the housing-is temporary. Therefore showing the confidence in the farmers. Which is pretty much zero. If the council had beleived these were really farmers? They would have made the housing poermanent. But it is temporary in anticipation of the inevitable flipping of properties, or the IAL, which I can assure you will be downgrading almost all of these lands out of ag, thus making all of this a huge moot point.

FOr me, as for nmmany others we now know that the IAL process will be the biggest loophole possible for these people. It will be willy nilly happily downgrading perfectly salvageable and usable farm lands, by making the ludicruous claim that only plus 4 and 3 land should be considered important. Lesser soils should be downgraded. Don't beleive me? Just wait, until after the next 20 meetings they have. The criteria and rules they are to go by will convuolute the process and confuse those on the board, as it is meant to do. That is the first step. NEver allow complete copmprehensioin of anything. If people do actually start to comprehend these bills, then it needs to be ammended, the rules changed, or something thrown in there to slow down the process. This is what I have learned from the theatre that is Council Chambers. Expect the same with the IAL bill. It will take our of ag those lands where a lot of those mansions are sitting, trust me. Forever. Even if those lands could have been ammended, and planted. Is this sustainable? Is this what is known aws food security? Is this what a beautiful and countrified Kauai looks like? Or am I a bitter old jealous fool, just a ranting old middle aged woman who has failed to be prosperous and should now be seen as the laughingstock pathetic idiot desperately grasping at anything to shoot poisonous venom at those who have done much better then I have? Why don't I bow down? Why don't I aquiesce with some grace and dignity? Why must I parade myself and make a fool of myself defending the rights of the impoverished and diesenfranchised? Why can't I just shut up and resist the urge to attend these meetings, and put in my worthless two cents, while other people fdar more important then me must wait there turn! Why, ideed. WHy indeed.

For the massahs on the hill, the problem has come home to roost and nest, and fester. Now lets see if we can separate the theatre and the reality and come to some pergatory of normalicy and some sense of fairness and justice. Is it or will it ever be possible on this little unique island of Kauai?

And while the homeless can't find a home, and the public housing residents live in fdear that even though they have followed all the rules and paid their rents they may be tossed out onto the street to house the homeless that are currently on the street becasue we have not cared about providing housing for those who need to work for the rich, and the rich and wealthy have won the due process to stay in their homes and continue their american dream, while we struggle to prevent a nightmare form happening, the world continues to turn and Kauai right along with it. Will we spin into each other, and see each other for what we are? Will we be able to look into each others eyes and make a theraputic break through?

I for one am willing to keep trying. I have not put down my armour yet. I wil continue to try. I still have hope.

Do You?

gotta go. Pumpkin crunch is ready.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Mel Rapozo : Blog Just say NO to the TVR bill-TODAY AT COUNTY COUNCIL

Mel Rapozo for Kauai County Council : Blog

I stand with Mel Rapozo, encouraging everyone to please vote no on th TVR ag bill exemption process which has become tainted with the many antics both in the council chambers and out of it. THe latest antics, are what is being called the "beer summit", when county attorneys visited Dickie Chang with beer, and they discussed the TVR bill at his house.

This bill is flawed for many reasons. It allows TVRs that were operating to come foreward for a exemption and to be allowed to continue to operate. It is being proposed out of fear that 77 landowners will sue the county if they can't have thier cake and eat i9t too. Screw us, screw real ag, these guys want the mansions on the hills, and the "gardeners and landscapers", to make it look pretty for the million dollar guests they will be bringing to the property. Forget food production. Forget farming. These are NOT farmers.

ALSO: today is the vote for the "farm worker housing bill". I have told council over and over, there is a Federal law, that says if someone is on your property as a farm laborer you HAVE to provide housing for them. This bill is too restrictive, and prevents some farmers from providing housing. It also gives a HUGE loophole for "woofing", which is actually tourism, and a step down from the luxury accommodations of some TVRs, but its the same thing, different smwell.

In BOITH cases, the county is trying to recreate the wheel. The process for TVR's is already written into chapter 205. The process for farm ag workers is already written into the State, and Federal law. Further, in thye case of the farm worker bill, the structures haver to be temporary, therefor,, true farmers cannot ask for federal help to build the housing, as that has tpo be permanent.

Please come to council today. For more on the beer summit, visit Joan Conrows blog, Kauaieclectic.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Another Public Housing Whitewash Article, and I will be calling up Shaun on Monday!

new ideas for public housing - Hawaii News -

With the flurry of public debate, and my relentless fight to attempt to get someone to listen to the actual housing residents, it has been my biggest problem to find poeple willing to speak out. WHy? From the exact fear, you hear echoed in these and other articles. I for one do not fear speaking out. But many others do. Perhaps it is becasue on Kauai we have a very good management team here that is empathetic, takes calls about repair issues, fixes them promptly as best as they can, and the office staff is kind and considerate.

But in other parts of this state, that is obviousely NOT the case. When it comes to repairs, we, in our housing complex are currently awaiting a new sewer system to fix the one that has been backlogging and causing a horrible stench now for ovwer a year, backflowing into our yards. We have 2an entire building that is boarded up and uninhabitable, as well as another 2 bedroom unit. Since we only have 8 units here, it is very noticeable. We have heard that these units will be getting repaired soon. People have been here, looking at it, and we are hopeful that those units will soon have families in them, since the building has 2 four bedroom units and can accommodate 2 large families.

The plan to evict law abiding, rule following and good tenants is for one thing, more then likely unconstitutional, and as I continue my quest for an attorney to represent us should that happen for a class action lawsuit more then likely very expensive for the state. I plan on contacting Sean Donovan's office, hopefully my last name (maiden) might help since it is the same as his, and we can get some dialogue going on this.

Public housing is currently the ONLY permanent housing solution for Hawaii residents who sincerely cannot afford more then 30 percvent of their incomes. Besides some minimal county projects, this is it. So, if you evict people who have been there for years, because there IS NO OTHER OPTION, not because they are "lazy, and need a wake up call, and need to go back to the beach to wake themselves up", a more or less direct quote from the rogue Democrat Representative Cabanilla. you are asking for the state to potentially be paying out millions of dollars in legal fees and restitution to those possibly slated to be evicted.

This is trul;y the states negligence, the real estate industries greed, and the legislature and the governors short sightedness on the true housing issues in this state.

While they have waxed blossomed cheeked over their apperent "triumphs" of so called "affordable housing", and so called "gap housing" for the middle class, the truly suffering have really had no options. As I have said time and time again, these are single mothers with kids, who just can't make it out there in the housing market who need a roof over their kids heads, so they are following the rules, keeping their hyeads down and trying to be good tenants so they can stay year after year in order to raise their children.

As to any idiotic fools who think that anyone in housing gets a free ride, you have to pay rent to live in public housing, as well as pay utility costs as well. SO what in the heck are you talmking about? The general public seems blind to the fact that the residents of public housing are elderly, disabled, and the WORKING poor, many si9ngle parents. Where would you like them to go? On the streets? As a punishment for WHAT exactly? The crime of being elderly? The crime of being disabled? The crlime of being single, working poor parents of children? This is somehow a crime punishable by eviction? You want top put these people out on the sreet to put in the homeless that are on the street now? So they can liove there another 10 yhears or so, while you still WHINE about the homeless on the street? Does anyone else think this is ludicrous, preposterous, and also might I add unconstitutional and defendable in a court of law, where the outcome is state=0, evicted residents of public housing =one million per ?

Use your heads, and get a grip. Shaun, my freind, I got ya on speed dial. Talk to ya on Monday!!