Sunday, August 2, 2015

FROTH AND FOAM AND BARKS AND BITES... OH MY

There are two important measures on the Kaua`i County Council agenda this Wednesday. One bill, up for final approval, would repeal in its entirety the "incessantly barking dogs" ordinance passed last year after decades of debate. Even though every councilmember agreed that what if anything it really needs is amending, it appears fated for repeal.


The other is a resolution, up for a final vote, that would ask voters if they want to repeal the Kaua`i County Charter provision for term limits for councilmembers, which passed in a landslide in 2006.


Both are the brain-children of Councilmember Ross Kagawa and during the hours of council and public debate he dominated the discussions of incessant barks, making viewing as painful as any incising bites.


The law is apparently working well despite what can only be described as Ross' always torturous and sometimes tortuous attempts to misrepresent both the facts and the underlying issue.


According to testimony, including that of the Kaua`i Police Department (KPD), the Prosecuting Attorney (PA) and the Kaua`i Humane Society (KHS)- the latter of which handles the complaints- of 76 original cases filed with KHS since the law was passed last year all but eight have been resolved. almost all by getting dog owners to stop the barking. They all agreed that this has been because the law established "consequences" if owners of incessantly barking dogs do not make use of educational materials provided by the KHS.


None of the cases were linked to any abuse of the dogs, according to KHS.


Although Kagawa repeatedly tried to establish that "100%" of the cases that were adjudicated were found "not guilty." first off that number was exactly TWO- count 'em- TWO. Secondly Kagawa was adamant about not including a third dog-owner that plead "no contest," a plea that is "treated the same as guilty in the eyes of the law."


Five cases are still in the prosecutor's office awaiting processing.


When Councilmembers JoAnn Yukimura and Gary Hooser brought this third case to his attention, Kagawa, at times doing his best Steve McGarrett cum Colombo impression, at others apparently portraying some sort of comical, tongue-tied, Bizarro-World Perry Mason, resorted to attempting to divine a reason for that no contest plea. He then simply discarded the case because no one could say exactly why the dog-owner had plead guilty (including the Prosecuting Attorney himself which Kagawa decided was occasion to verbally "spike the ball"), apparently rejecting the theory that it was because he actually might have been guilty.


Hooser said his operating theory of lawmaking, based on almost two decades as a legislator, including a stint as state Senate Majority Leader, is that the intent of passing a law is not to fine or even jail people. Rather, it's to discourage people from certain behaviors, likening it to establishing a speed limit to slow people down, not as a cash cow.


From the testimony, apparently Ross and the three other members of Council Chair Mel Rapozo's "Tea Party" faction either don't get that or are simply playing politics because they all voted for repeal when the bill passed out of committee almost two weeks ago.


Wednesday's council meeting beings at 8:45 a.m. and will be live-streamed on-line. Bills and Resolutions are generally taken up toward the end of meetings although there is no guarentee that that will be the case.


Hooser has posted a message on Facebook saying:


"I encourage Kauai residents to let all Councilmembers know how you feel about these two issues - repealing the barking dog ordinance and repealing term limits. PLEASE SEND IN YOUR TESTIMONY TODAY TO counciltestimony@kauai.gov, before Wednesday August 5, especially on the proposed repeal of Kauai's barking dog ordinance which is scheduled for a final vote that day. I share the concerns expressed by The Garden Island Newspaper and will be voting against both proposals. Both proposals have been introduced by Councilmember Kagawa and I respect his right to promote his values but disagree strongly with him on the these two issues."

Saturday, August 1, 2015

(PNN) MEDIA ABANDONS COVERAGE OF MAUNA KEA ARRESTS- USES DOCARE VIDEO/REPORTS INSTEAD;


Star-Advertiser's Hurley Calls It "Setback For Opponents Of Mountaintop Telescope Development" But No TMT Personnel Or Trucks Were There.


by Andy Parx



(PNN- Parx News Net) In a somewhat bizarre display of a combination of sycophancy and laziness some corporate media called the arrests and citation of "Protectors of Mauna a Wakea " (Mauna Kea) early Friday morning "a setback for opponents of mountaintop telescope development," despite the fact that nothing else took place.


After being banned by DLNR from coverage, members of the corporate media- especially Honolulu Star Bulletin reporter Timothy Hurley- apparently did not even witness the arrests and seemingly just reported (paywall) what he was told by the Division of Conservation And Resource Enforcement (DOCARE).


Hurley's characterization of the arrests as a "setback for opponents" came despite the fact that there were no trucks or attempts at any actions related to development of the proposed "Thirty Meter Telescope " (TMT).


Na`au News Now, an alternative news outlet organized on behalf of the presence of the "Protectors" on the sacred mountain, reported in a Facebook video Thursday from the mountain, interviewing kanaka maoli (Native Hawaiians) cultural and religious practitioners who said that they expected arrests and citations as soon as that night and were prepared.


Thursday afternoon PNN had reported that "(DLNR spokesperson Dan) Dennison said the state has also decided to restrict the media’s access during any enforcement action. The decision, he said, was made in part because of the difficult logistics of carrying out a mission late at night," via a statement buried at the end of a Star-Advertiser. article that day.


Instead DOCARE took their own video and apparently handed it out to corporate television and print news outlets such as one broadcast on KHON, Ch 2


Although Hawai`i News Now (HNN) used Hurley's language in an early report, reporter Jim Mendoza later filed a report using a "MAUNA KEA, HAWAII" dateline, describing the arrests at the 9,000 ft level (by the visitor center) that left ambiguous whether he actually had visited and witnessed what happened at the arrest site or just saw the DOCARE video.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

SUIT CHALLENGES STATE RESTRICTIONS ON FAITH PRACTITIONERS ON MAUNA KEA; SEEKS TRO AT HEARING THURSDAY.


(PNN) July 8-- A lawsuit has been flied in US District Court challenging restrictions placed upon faith practitioners who hold Mauna a Wākea (Mauna Kea) to be sacred, according to a press release from Hawai`i Island attorney Lanny Sinkin.


Practitioners consider the proposed Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) on the Mountain to be a desecration of a sacred site.


A hearing is scheduled on a temporary restraining order (TRO) at 9:00 a.m. Thursday (7/9/15) before Judge Derrick Watson, United States District Court, 300 Ala Moana Blvd., Honolulu.


The petition for the (TRO) is directed to Governor of Hawai`i David Y. Ige; Suzanne Case, Chairperson, Department of Land and Natural Resources, State of Hawai`i (DLNR); Kekoa Kaluhiwa, First Deputy, Department of Land and Natural Resources, State of Hawai`i; Gregory Moerrs, Chair, Maunakea Management Board; and Donald Straney, Chancellor, University of Hawai`i at Hilo.


The release says that the TRO seeks to prevent the imposition of severe restrictions on the rights of those practicing Hawaiian traditional faith. Those restrictions include allowing faith practitioners to ascend the mountain to their sacred sites only at 1:00 p.m. daily for a limited time, limiting the number of practitioners that can ascend to ten and requiring the presence of a Ranger from the Office of Mauna Kea Management (OMKM) to accompany the practitioners.


The suit alleges that these limitations violate the US Constitution’s First Amendment guarantee of rights to religious practice and that differential treatment amounts to religious discrimination against the traditional faith under the US Constitution's Fourteenth Amendment guarantee of equal protection of the law.


Astronomers, water trucks, nitrogen trucks, and others freely access the road to the summit with no restrictions.


The suit was filed Monday, July 6, on behalf of plaintiff Frank Kamehaloha Anuumealani Nobriga, Kahuna of the Temple of Lono according to the filing.


In a statement filed in the case, Nobriga said that “in the eyes of the Temple, the disrespect shown for the traditional faith of the Hawaiian people is a matter of record for more than 100 years and most recently found expression through State of Hawai`i actions that either suppressed the traditional faith, limited traditional faith practice, or relegated traditional faith practitioners to a second class citizenship unprotected by the Constitution and laws of the United States."


According to the release the case also brings to the attention of the court new rules issued by the OMKM and DLNR which, taken all together, are designed to drive the "Protectors" off the Mountain and prevent another blockage from stopping the desecration.


On June 24, 2015, the Protectors of Mauna a Wākea, numbering around 750, prevented the construction workers for the TMT from ascending the Mountain. The Protectors have kept a 24 hour vigil at the 9,000 foot level for more than 100 days.


The new rules include shutting down the Visitor Center at the 9,000 foot level, closing all the bathrooms at that level, cutting off the water at that level, no camping, limiting groups that can access the Mountain to no more than ten people, creating a zone within one mile around the road up the Mountain that essentially excludes anyone not specifically allowed up by the OMKM, and otherwise limits activities in a manner specifically designed to prevent the Protectors from once again being successful.


For more information call Lanny Sinkin at (808) 936-4428.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

THE "BIG" STORY?

THE "BIG" STORY?


Today a few of my favorite activists ridiculed media coverage of the transgender "coming out" by the former Bruce, now Caitlyn, Jenner, basically saying there are bigger environmental, economic justice, etc, stories for the corporate media to report rather than this "Kardashian" infotainment.


And I suppose if you aren't transgender perhaps the issue is not important to you... or perhaps the murders and suicide rates are so high among trans people that you don't hear about it enough to care.

But the story of a famous person going public about who she is attracts the kind of media attention that is essential to spreading a message of acceptance of transgender- the "T" in LGBTQ- community members in a world that has been and still is for the most part, hostile to them.


At a time when the same acceptance and civil rights they seek are finally on the verge of being won by lesbian, gay and bisexual persons, it's a story that is just as important as "same sex marriage" or any LGB story was one, five or ten years ago... whether it was "Ellen" or your neighbor down the block.

This is a crucial time for transgender persons, especially children. We don't need another generation growing up with an almost 50% suicide rate. And seeing themselves positively portrayed on TV is the beginning of the end of discrimination and the kind of religious atrocities that directly cause those deaths.


It could take years before laws fully catch up and it will take a sea change in attitudes to get there. But until then reporting the story with sensitivity and acceptance- as most if not all media are doing now- will remain as important as anything. If it takes a "Kardashian" to move the issue to a new level it will be following the same path that LGB and before that racial integration stories took when famous people "came out" to help reverse bigotry and make acceptance the norm.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Neil Young + Promise Of The Real “A Rock Star Bucks A Coffee Shop

Promise Of The Real “A Rock Star Bucks A Coffee Shop” Official Video and Lyrics Contrary to the misleading information coming from Starbucks, the coffee company is in alliance with other Food Giants, including Monsanto, in suing the state of Vermont to overturn the GMO labeling laws voted for by the people. If you don’t like a rock star bucks a coffee shop Well you better change your station cause that ain’t all that we got Yeah, I want a cup of coffee but I don’t want a GMO I like to start my day off without helping Monsanto Monsanto, let our farmers grow What they wanna grow From the fields of Nebraska to the banks of the Ohio Farmers won’t be free to grow what they wanna grow If corporate control takes over the American farm With fascist politicians and chemical giants walking arm in arm Monsanto, let our farmers grow What they wanna grow When the people of Vermont voted to label our food with GMOs So they could find out what was in what the farmer grows Monsanto and Starbucks grew the grocery manufacturer mice [?] It sued the state of Vermont to overturn the people’s will Monsanto — and Starbucks — others want to know What they feed their children Monsanto, let our farmers grow What they wanna grow -----------------------------

Sunday, May 31, 2015

WELCOME TO MY FANTASY

Tuesday's Mother Jones article on Bernie Sanders younger days gave rise to today's misogynist corporate press rantings over his 1972 piece that gives incredible insight into the state of the women’s movement in that year, publishing a blurry yet readable scan of a Sanders' Freudian essay called "Man and Woman" from the "Vermont Freeman."

Of course the puerile obsessions of the Chuck Todd-crowd that surfaced over the piece on the Sunday blather-fests demonstrates that those who didn't get it them still fail to comprehend the dominant-subservient dynamic of the rape culture that Sanders understood even 42 years ago.


At the time, despite the era's "revolution in the air," movement gatherings were still male-dominated affairs where women were kept in the kitchen and condescendingly told how "cute" their all-female "consciousness raising" sessions were.


Press accounts have "keyed in" the most prurient parts of an essay that was apparently meant to demonstrate the social science behind men's knee-jerk rejection of social equality and women's internalization of basic troglodytic male insecurities. But of course they've left the insightful parts that follow on the cutting room floor because four decades have done nothing to bring these suits and hair-dos into the 21st century.


If "news"- and I use the term loosely- of this smear hasn't reached you yet, it will. It took a while to follow the links to find the original amidst the breathlessly and selectively out-of-context excerpts to find the original article. I doubt you'll be seeing the full text any time soon.


In 1972 few men were able to grasp the concept of a social component and go beyond "equal pay" type issues being raised by the nascent women's movement of the day. Sanders on the other hand, got it then the same way he does today. Sanders continues to be in the progressive forefront of the battle, especially in the military, citing current legislative efforts as woefully inadequate.


And by the way, do read the rest of MJ's profile of his younger days.


I'm not about to revoke my Green Party affiliation to join the Hawai`i Democratic Party to vote in the caucuses but I'll be doing everything I can to see if we can raise Sanders' already incredibly 15% showing in the national polls to 51%- despite the clueless, gotcha, issue-free, industrial press- by grabbing the potential of the so-called "social" media by it's horns and rallying people to utilize it for our own designs. All we have to do is reverse the perverted, self-fulfilling reasoning of the "he can't win so I won't vote for him" loons.


Hey- it could happen.


My "now you see it, now you don't" eyes ain't what they used to be and I'm really bad at keying in text. So scroll down, squint a little and read Sanders' essay in full. And if you don't see what it really says perhaps that's a clue as to why despite the gains in the treatment of women over forty-plus years we, as a still-male-dominated society, still have so far to go.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

UNFORTUNATE TRUTH

The last thing in the world you'd think this peace-pursuin'-pup would watch was last night's White House Musical Tribute to the Military (or some such jingoistic gibberish). But when I saw John Forgerty on the schedule my first though was "will he do it- does he have the chutzpah to speak truth to power?

So I recorded it and today buzzed though Obama and the "rah-rah. let's hear it for war" part. And when John came on he did "Bad Moon Rising."


Well, close enough. After all it has the lyric:

"Hope you got your things together.
Hope you are quite prepared to die.
Looks like we're in for nasty weather.
One eye is taken for an eye."


And seeing Obama's cabinet-o-war and the rest of the military-elite jangling their medals and clapping and singing along was surreal in it's own right.


But I kept zipping and sure enough, my faith was given Credence as the first chords of "Unfortunate Son"* rang out to the mostly clueless gaggle of dress-uniformed baby-killers, some actually singing along... although shots of the murderer-in-chief revealed he knew exactly what was going on, exhibiting one of his infamous sh*t-eatin', anger-just-below-the-surface grins.


I harkened back to the early 90's on the eve of the first Iraqacle-debacle, the night before the the first phoney Bushy invasion began- the one that got the ISIS ball rolling in the first place- to the Grammy Awards where Dylan came out, drunk as a skunk, and screamed a Zimm-a-lacious version of "Masters of War" that was unintelligible to anyone who wasn't intimately conversant in Bob-speak.


But now, amidst today's bipartisan calls by decrepit and feeble-minded politicians, generals and pugnacious pundits for another seemingly inevitable bloodbath of gullible American youth in a return to the sanguine Sumerian sands, it was nice to see at least five minutes of sanity thrown in the faces of the insane.


Speaking truth to power is easy when you post it on Facebook or a blog. But when you get up there and do it right in the faces of those that need to hear it most well, John Fogerty you certainly are a Fortunate Son-of-a-Bitch.


Happy Dead Soldiers Day all.


-----------------


*Some folks are born, made to wave the flag
Ooo, their red, white and blue
And when the band plays "Hail to the Chief"
Ooo, they point the cannon at you, Lord


It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no senator's son, son
It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no fortunate one, no
Some folks are born, silver spoon in hand
Lord, don't they help themselves, y'all
But when the taxman comes to the door
Lord, the house looks like a rummage sale, yeah


It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no millionaire's son, no, no
It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no fortunate one, no


Yeah, yeah
Some folks inherit star spangled eyes
Ooh, they send you down to war, Lord
And when you ask 'em, "How much should we give?"
Ooh, they only answer "More! More! More!", y'all


It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no military son, son
It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no fortunate one, one
It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no fortunate one, no, no, no
It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no fortunate son, no, no, no