Tuesday, December 22, 2015


   The Mark Zuckerberg clan was kind enough today to post to my Facebook "Timeline" what appears to be a "Seasons Greetings" note reading:
   "It's the first day of winter, Andy! We're sending warm wishes your way today and throughout the season."
   Can't ya just feel the corporate love? I look forward to that sort of analytics-derived sincerity from, no doubt, the very bottom of Mark's and Priscilla's altruistic, silicon-based, little hearts. (The informality of the exclamation point following my name was really special touch "Mark"... if I may be so bold)..
   I'm sure Mr Z and Ms Chan will want to personally take some time-out from their busy schedule of writing checks with eye-popping numbers of extra zeros on the end buying-up a kuleana or three- all the while constructing fences that block points along the thousand-year-old "ala loa" shoreline-access-trail and posting "no trespassing" signs at Lepa`uli beach. Then they will have all the time- and privacy- they need so as to sort through all that mega-data to generate notification of these vitally informative messages of Aloha on my list of all the other "events" I didn't ask to be made aware of but will nonetheless be there for my perusal "throughout the season." .
I'm sure that wouldn't be the season of genocide. No- I guess you just meant the winter.
   Your Kaua`i Pal,

Tuesday, November 24, 2015


   There are no "radicalized" people, only the abused, the disaffected, the marginalized, the oppressed... and so, often, the deluded.
  If you have strong "beliefs,"- especially those made of whole-cloth- and will fight for them, you are the one you seek to wage war upon.
  Belief is a mental illness. Knowledge is the cure. There's nothing wrong with not knowing. The scourge is only in thinking you know when you don't.
  "It" is not a "warped view" or "wrong interpretation" of others' religions, it is rather your own religious indoctrination- your very need for religion itself- that clouds your mind and heart.
  And if you have deluded yourself into thinking you are only "spiritual" and that's any different than being religious (i.e. if you "believe" in and throw around the "G-word," use abstract concepts and call them knowledge), if your very lifestyle is offensive to the rest of the world and you think it's because they are "jealous" of your exceptionalism-induced "freedoms"  and finally, if you think there must be a "better way to wage this war," YOU ARE THE PROBLEM.

  A more effective war does not lead to peace. The truism "you cannot simultaneously prepare for war and work for peace" always pertains.

    What a fool believes he sees, the wise man has the power to reason away...

  Please rejoin the "peace movement. It's a time for Peace- I swear it's not too late....

Saturday, September 19, 2015


(Read the Laurie Cicotello article below)

by Andy Parx

(PNN) -- September 19 -- An "Editorial Viewpoint" refuting articles and letters portraying State Representative James K. Tokioka's campaign spending violations conviction as being a result of nothing more than "a simple mistake" has been refused publication on the web site of the local Kaua`i newspaper.

Despite the on-line publication of three articles and a letter to the editor that were seen by many in the community on social media as slanted to be exculpatory in nature toward Tokioka's actions, the commentary by Kaua`i resident Laurie Cicotello was published in print on Sunday September 13 but was never posted in the on-line edition of The Garden Island's (TGI) thus preventing statewide distribution.

Tokioka's unsubstantiated and unconfirmed claim that he took and "passed" a lie detector test was given prominent play in all three articles, the first on June 28 and the final two on August 28 and September 1 upon his "no contest" plea. A September 16 letter to the editor defending Tokioka (D- District 15- Wailua Homesteads, Hanamaulu, Lihu`e, Puhi, Old Koloa Town) and condemning Cicotello was the only on-line indication that the commentary had been published in Sunday's print edition.

As of press time TGI Editor Bill Burley did not respond to a Friday morning email requesting comment. A source close to the paper told PNN that they never post so-called "Editorial Viewpoint" articles however it was apparently given that moniker by the paper and many other "one-and-off" commentaries have appeared on-line under Burley.

In the unposted piece Cicotello points out that the "Campaign Spending Commission (CSC) investigates dozens of 'mistakes' regarding the untimely or inaccurate filing of campaign spending reports... then assesses a $50 administrative fine for such an honest mistake.

"But in Tokioka's case," Cicotello explained "the Commission referred the matter to the Attorney General (AG) who investigated and then prosecuted Tokioka for violating campaign spending laws with criminal intent.

"In exchange for pleading no contest and accepting criminal responsibility for his actions, the Attorney General charged him with one count of 'reckless' untimely filing and inaccurate reporting," she reported.

Tokioka was sentenced to pay a $1,000 fine and make a public apology on his Friends of Tokioka Facebook page. He received a "deferred acceptance" to his plea that will clear his record if he stays out of trouble for six months.

Cicotello went on to describe the series of events following two Tokioka fundraisers in Honolulu that collected "$27,000 before the primary and then failed to report those contributions" and how, despite repeated attempts by the CSC to give him "the benefit of the doubt," he did not report collecting the money and/or file with the body in previous reports and/or by the final report deadline before the election, as required by law. He finally filed the report six weeks later, well after the primary election where the former Republican Kaua`i Councilmember faced his first serious challenge since changing parties and being appointed to the state post.

Even after the sentencing hearing where Tokioka told the judge that he took "full responsibility" for the matter, when meeting with reporters outside the courtroom Tokioka showed no remorse and attempted to blame it all on "his campaign volunteers and his CPA campaign treasurer," stated Cicotello, who attended the sentencing.

In the August 2014 Democratic primary election Tokioka defeated his opponent Dylan Hooser.

Cicotello was a volunteer supporter of Hooser's campaign and, with Maui "good government" attorney Lance Collins, pursued the case with the CSC and AG after she and others- including PNN- made repeated attempts to get Tokioka to acknowledge and file reports of the contributions with the CSC.

A press release from Collins following Tokioka's conviction and describing the case was ignored by TGI in its two post-conviction articles.

During the waning days of the campaign Tokioka repeatedly stonewalled attempts at communication regarding the fundraiser and the lacking reports.

Yet in a TGI article dated July 26, 2014 Tokioka admitted to holding the two fundraisers and failing to list the money collected but he apparently falsely, according to what he told the judge, claimed that leaving them off previous reports was a "clerical error" that he would correct.

But in the final report before the election he failed to do so.

The contributions were primarily from developers, corporations and their employees and lobbyists and included contributions from members of the "biotech" and chemical industry. such as DuPont.

Tokioka has been a staunch supporter of positions on state legislation supported by local subsidiaries of the international chemical cartel in their attempts to defeat proposed GMO labeling laws and, more importantly, to block local county governments from regulating Restricted Use Pesticide (RUP) use and the growing of genetically modified foods.

Tokioka's ex-wife Beth Tokioka recently became a spokesperson for one of the self-styled "seed growers" in Waimea and Kekaha on Kaua`i after acting as an operative for and advisor to Kaua`i Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. in his opposition to Bill 2491 which required disclosure of the location and amount of use of RUPs and imposed modest buffer zones primarily around schools, waterways and highways.

The bill passed over Carvalho's veto.

The issue was in the forefront of the campaign. Tokioka's opponent Dylan Hooser, was a prominent supporter of the bill and critic of the chemical industry. Hooser's father, long time Kaua`i Councilmember and former State Senate Majority Leader Gary Hooser, introduced Bill 2491.

The bill became Ordinance 960 but the industry sued the county and it was struck down by a federal magistrate with familial ties to the chemical/biotech industry. The ruling was based on supposed "implied" state preemption despite the fact that no state law explicitly prevents regulation by the counties. Tokioka has since supported failed attempts during the 2015 legislative session to have state law explicitly preempt county regulation of pesticides and "genetically modified" materials.

The decision is on appeal to the federal 9th Circuit court.

Watch for more on Tokioka's campaign finances, legislative votes and industry ties in an upcoming PNN articles.


The following is the article as submitted by Ms Cicotello

Representative James Tokioka pleaded no contest to a criminal charge of failing to timely file or provide accurate campaign spending reports during the primary election last year.

While he told the Honolulu court that he accepts full responsibility and has told the media that it was a “mistake,” his own actions say otherwise.

A mistake is “a wrong action or statement proceeding from faulty judgment, inadequate knowledge or inattention.”

The Campaign Spending Commission investigates dozens of “mistakes” regarding the untimely or inaccurate filing of campaign spending reports.

In most cases, the candidate is dispelled of their faulty judgment, inadequate knowledge or inattention, and they correct the error. The Commission then assesses a $50 administrative fine for such an honest mistake.

But in Tokioka's case, the Commission referred the matter to the Attorney General who investigated and then prosecuted Tokioka for violating campaign spending laws with criminal intent.

In exchange for pleading no contest and accepting criminal responsibility for his actions, the Attorney General charged him with one count of “reckless” untimely filing and inaccurate reporting.

Tokioka held two fundraisers in Honolulu and earned more than $27,000 before the primary and then failed to report those contributions.

The Commission gave Tokioka the benefit of the doubt and directed him to correct his mistake immediately to ensure primary voters would be informed.

Instead, Tokioka did not make complete and full disclosure until six weeks later, after the primary.

What does reckless mean? Law Professor C. Stanhope Kenny said, “Intention cannot exist without foresight, but foresight can exist without intention. For a man may foresee the possible or even probable consequences of his conduct and yet not desire them to occur; none the less if he persists on his course he knowingly runs the risk of bringing about the unwished result. To describe this state of mind the word 'reckless' is the most appropriate.”

In other words, Tokioka was prosecuted because he persisted in a course of conduct knowingly running the risk that his actions would violate the law – to prevent the public from knowing his campaign's finances during the election.

That is criminal intent.

Tokioka told the judge that he was taking full responsibility during sentencing.

Then he went outside the courtroom to waiting reporters and blamed his campaign volunteers and his CPA campaign treasurer for his crime.

If they had committed a crime, they would have been prosecuted, but nobody else was prosecuted.

Tokioka's attorney then told reporters that the prosecution was motivated by Tokioka's opponents – insinuating it wasn't based on Tokioka's criminal conduct or the Attorney General's judgment to prosecute him.

Tokioka has shown no acceptance of responsibility for his crime. He has shown no remorse.

There were no mistakes, just reckless disregard for the law.

His statements to the media after his conviction demonstrates that he continues to show arrogant and reckless disregard for the law.

Tokioka should show some shame for the crime he was convicted of and stop trying to excuse it or blame others.

Friday, August 28, 2015


So I'm gettin' outta my car just outside my beautiful new home and this puffed-up 4"x6" piece of green plastic starts blowing down the driveway headed for the yard. It lands a yard past my feet and I go to pick it up and of course a wind gust lofts it once again and deposits another three feet away- a dynamic that repeats itself twice before I finally stomp on it and it goes "POP," as does my back.

I bend down anyway now that I've slain the Jabberwock and pick it up. And all it says on it, in big. black. bold letters, is "GREENEARTH" with "100% recycled material" in tiny letters below it.

I'm getting too old for this. Irony stopped existing decades ago- around the same time people's misuse of the term became ironic. Everything is ironic these days to the point where irony can only be found in the most sincere, mundane circumstance.

I'm taking a nap- a nice long one.

Sunday, August 2, 2015


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


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


(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



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


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


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

Tuesday, May 5, 2015


"Blood bath" isn't too strong a term for today's Hawai`i State Senate shake-up. And social media has eleven fingers to point in explaining how and why three of the biggest advocates for food safety and sustainability- Senate Health Committee Chairman Josh Green, Water and Land Chairwoman Laura Thielen, and Agriculture Chairman Russell Ruderman- were reportedly ousted from their committee leadership positions.

It would be easy, if not simplistic, to think that it was just an early yet predicable coup for the chemical and Frankenfood cartel. But the demise of conservative Senate President Donna Kim, along with the survival of other allies of those opposed to the indiscriminate use of pesticides and genetically-modified-food experiments, makes that look like a less than compelling argument.

It would be easier still to blame Green's at-many-times abrasive style and intransigence over the medical cannabis dispensary bill for his ouster as conference committee chair precipitating the falling dominoes that led to a 19-6 vote to replace Kim with Kaua`i Sen. Ron Kouchi.

But perhaps because of the neophyte nature of the corporate media reporters covering the legislature, those perplexed at the way majorities shifted have little idea of how the legislature- and moreover the state senate- has operated for decades.

Neither officeholders nor staffers are eager to talk on-the-record about the politically functional dystopia that is the Hawai`i Legislature. But when they do talk they start and end by saying it's a lot like prison where survival means joining a gang that will "cover your ass."

Though usually depicted using such niceties as "coalitions" or "caucuses" with names (used more by reporters than members) like "Opihi," and "Chess Club" or, more traditionally, with the name of the leader, they are more like the La Nuestra Familia and the Texas Syndicate because no one survives alone in the Hawai`i Senate. You can't be everywhere at once and without "family" you WILL be stabbed in the back.

In the legislature's hurry-up-and-wait, four-month rigid schedule you can never be at every committee meeting, hearing or- more importantly in a body that's exempt from the state's Sunshine Law- back room deal-making session to protect your interests.

So you join a gang. You join the one that reflects your interests, whether that means environmental protection, good governance and "doing good" or money, power and "doing well." You'll either find it or, by joining with those disenfranchised or generally disgusted with the current selection of gangs, form a new one.

That of course means that "you can't always get what you want but if you try sometimes, you just might find, you get what you need." Because when all is said and done it's a game of "Political Survivor" - Outwit, Outplay, Outlast.

And as every prisoner knows the gang will help you as long as you are useful to them but if you burn them or make them look bad they will turn on you like a pit bull in heat.

So what you don't want to do is make the others look bad. Like in prison, it's a matter of "honor." You may not support the legislative goals of your own gang members. Some put more or less of an emphasis on supporting each others' priorities. But if you make them look bad in front of the other gangs with whom they make have made the necessary side deals required to engender support for their priority legislation, you will be put on a flaming boat and set adrift like a used-up Viking warrior.

And that's what Sen. Green did. And did with such an egotistical zeal that he brought down the whole gang with him... except for those who, out of self-preservation, jumped away from his flaming ship.

It wasn't just the medical marijuana dispensary bill. Green's penchant for "my-way-or-the-highway" has sowed the destruction of a slim sub-faction of his so-called "Chess Club" gang long before last Friday's debacle when he was dumped in a vain attempt by Kim and others to save their own asses.

Perhaps the most telling thing we found in press reports was this (pay-walled) from a Honolulu Star-Advertiser’s coverage of the Saturday morning massacre and Green's removal as head conferee:
Lawmakers had made a dispensary program one of their top priorities in this year's session, and the effort had progressed smoothly until last week's conference talks, which at times grew heated.

Some dispensary advocates were irked by what they saw as a hard-line approach by Green.
During a conference hearing Friday, Green had said he declined to meet with the governor's staff about the dispensary measure. He added he would not change his position on certain provisions even if that might cost Ige's support and signature.

"The governor doesn't know half of what I know or you know or Sen. (Will) Espero knows about this program," Green told (House Conference Committee Chair Della) Au Belatti during conference Friday. "He's a fantastic guy but he's not in the trenches."
Whether Green was always a babe in the woods politically, as many observers have long contended, or whether the presence of a "27th Senator" in the form of the well-connected and popular among his former colleagues in the senate, Governor David Ige changed the equation this year and Green simply never recalculated is subject to more discussion. At best he exhibited a head-shaking political naivety. At worst, the emergency room physician displayed an egotistical "God Complex" on many health-care-related bills.

It hasn't helped that his campaign donor list reads like a who's who of corporate heath care lobbyists and physicians in a time when donor lists are becoming ever more available for scrutinization by the media and public.

No one is shocked- unless they are "shocked, shocked"- that there's politics afoot at the legislature. Unless that someone is Senator Josh Green.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015


More than forty years ago Kanaka Maoli and those in allegiance began to dream of reclaiming political and cultural sovereignty over Hawai`i nei.

In the 1970's after more than a century and a half of an often brutal repression of spirit, culture and language- with a US military overthrow and occupation thrown in- what's been called a "renaissance" emerged in not just direct actions like the reclamation of the bombed-out yet still sacred island of Kaho`olawe, but the resurrection of the language, culture and very soul of a great people which had been viciously repressed.

As with black families in the Jim Crowe south, or the native people in British colonial India, parents felt they had to have "the talk" with their children... "give up your dignity, give up your language, don't rebel against the white man- it's a losing battle."

The culture and spiritual identity was literally beaten out of the children. Much like aboriginal children across the globe, they were taken from their homes to indoctrination camps where they were "de-educated" and forced to be white in everything but skin color.

The political arm of the renaissance blossomed into what's been loosely called the "sovereignty" movement and, as scholars documented the illegality and brutality of the overthrow and yes the genocide, kanaka and allied kanaka-at-heart realized that the key was "education."

Surely once the colonizers in America and across the world understood what happened, the wrongs would be righted- although how it should happen and what a resulting model would look like was and still is fodder for extensive debate.

Yet as the years passed it began to seem like despite successes in that effort to educate ourselves and the "outside" world, kanaka lands were still held "in trust" in the hands of the state which, US courts have ruled, "owns" what are now called "ceded lands" even though no such ceding ever took place.

Those lands have continued to be stolen in new and innovative ways as, despite protections built into the State constitution. western money and paradigms are moving to "steal the land one last time- fair and square" via things like the Akaka Bill and the increasingly cash-conscious Hawai`i State Office of Hawaiian Affairs.

Some of us who were in our 20's then and are now getting used to being called "uncle" have wondered of late what to make of it. Were we wrong? Was "education" always going to be an exercise in futility because there are many who just don't care or don't want to be "educated?"

But on April 4 something extraordinary happened. Following a seven year "legal" process that just ignored the long-standing, oft-stated opposition to development of the place where the kanaka creation story took place, 31 people were arrested for blocking the beginning of earth moving for a new multi-billion-dollar Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT).

There are 13 other telescopes at the top of the mountain but the 14th desecration of Mauna a Wakea (commonly called Mauna Kea) has since proven to be one slight too many.

As Moloka`i kupuna Walter Ritte has said, people are saying "enough is enough."

Many of those with vested or even casual interest in the TMT have tried to characterize those engaging in the astonishing uprising of not just kanaka and kama`aina but legions of the now apparently "educated" across the US and the world, as being misguided, some going as far as to say it's about "science vs superstition." They say it's all about astronomy and discovery, some even attempting to twist the story of pre-western-contact voyaging Polynesians using celestial navigation in traveling to Hawai`i (something pooh-poohed by the self-same academics just a couple of generations back) to claim we are misguided in protecting the sacred mountain "because Hawaiians were always 'about' science."

But this has nothing to do with "discovery of the beginning of time and space." There are plenty of other mountains in the world for that.

While the precipitating incident has occurred surrounding the occupation and physical degradation and desecration of Mauna a Wakea, this isn't simply about one battle to stop one telescope any more.

It's about how, as Uncle Walter told the TMT corporation, "you got greedy. You had 13 other telescopes but it wasn't enough. Now we want them all gone. And we're not going away"

People will ask if the project is really about astronomy or whether "science," as it is many times, is being used as a smokescreen for a cash-cow that has been projected by some to potentially garner anywhere up to a million dollars a night for its use, were it to be constructed.

Others will argue about the wisdom of TMT's unnecessary "in your face" attempt to bulldoze around some dirt even before funding is in place- years before actual construction is set begin. They will question trying to do so while legal cases are still on appeal.

But this is about the fruits of education that many still dream will lead to demilitarization, deoccupation and decolonization. It may not happen in the lifetimes of those of us who had the vision in the 70's. But the protection action on Mauna a Wakea gives us what a dream always needs to survive... hope.

Sunday, April 5, 2015


Reefer Madness is coming to Wednesday's Kaua`i County Council meeting when long-time pot-foe, Chair Mel Rapozo, will introduce Resolution 2015-37 demanding the state legislature kill bills that would set up "compassion centers" to provide medicinal cannabis patients in Hawai`i with a place to purchase their medicine.

Most other states with medical marijuana programs provide for "stores" where patients can buy their medicine and the programs have generally been a great success. Some states- Colorado and Washington and the District of Columbia- and some local jurisdictions have also approved the recreational use of marijuana and the US congress is considering a bill to remove it from it's ":Schedule 1" classification which falsely states that it has no medicinal value.

Resolution 2015-37 appears to be solely the brain-child of long-time pot-fear-mongerer Rapozo with no other "introducers" listed. The resolution notes that the police departments of Honolulu, Maui and Hawai`i Island and the Honolulu Prosecuting Attorney have submitted testimony opposing House Bill 321 with Kaua`i PD and Prosecuting Attorney notable for their absence from the list.

Apparently Rapozo didn't properly research his resolution because the companion bill to HB321 is SB 1029 not Senate Bill 879 (as the resolution says) which is a decriminalization bill that passed the senate and is currently in the house.

The resolution asks that if the legislature doesn't abandon HB321- which appears poised for passage this year after Hawai`i became the first state legislature to okay medical marijuana more than a decade ago- a long list of draconian restrictions be added to the bill including one allowing the "counties to... restrict or (even) prohibit growing or selling" what many patients call "the blessed herb."

The resolution claims that "marijuana trafficking remains a source of violence, crime and social degradation" much as the now-ridiculed 1936 film "Reefer Madness" claimed.

The resolution also asks that "should the legislature choose to adopt the bill(s)" that they:

1) establish a two-year residency requirement, presumably even for those who only have months or even weeks to live or have just found out they need chemotherapy (the latter being one of the qualifying uses cited in current state law);

2) ban "home grown cultivation and production" phasing out the current grow-your-own program;

3) establish a "closed system that ties a specific cardholder and proscribed limitation to a specific grower/retailer;"

4) allow only for a "pilot program" and

5) "explicitly prohibit... reciprocity provisions between Hawai`i and other states and counties."

Long time council observers and medical marijuana advocates anticipate the presence of Rapozo's ally in the tiny, cult-like and assuredly-anachronistic pot-prohibition cabal in Hawai`i, Keith Kamita- the the zealously anti-weed Deputy Director of the Department of Public Safety who has notably traveled the state ranting about the dubious so-called dangers of marijuana use, speaking to any group that will listen... including, in the past at Rapozo's behest, the Kaua`i County Council.

Some even predict the presence of bible-thumping union-boss Tenari Maafala. The President of the State of Hawaii Organization of Police Officers (SHOPO) has long-joined Kamita and Rapozo in their fanaticism and SHOPO opposition is also cited in the resolution. As an example of Maafala's other world-views he once said "you would have to kill me" to get him to enforce a ban on gay marriage because, according to multiple media reports, it would be "contrary to his religious views."

A crowd is anticipated for the meeting that begins at 9 a.m at the Historic County Building by the Royal Palm park on Rice St. But Council Chair Rapozo has been infamous for manipulating the order of disposition of items on the agenda in order to either stultify or enhance the numbers of those giving testimony... often dependent on his own stance on an issue

If taken in order, the resolution itself may not come up until the afternoon. However those who want to testify on the matter at the beginning of the meeting can testify on Communication C2015-113- a technical agenda item asking to have the resolution itself placed on the agenda. It appears on something called the "Consent Calendar" (CC) and that is always voted upon at the very beginning of a meeting. It is listed under "#7" of the CC and you must request it be reassigned from the CC for public testimony. Ask the clerk before the meeting starts or raise your hand when the consent calendar is announced.

Medical Marijuana reform activists are asking for anyone- especially current or prospective patients and/or those who have not been able to obtain their medicine under the current program- to come and testify. If you cannot attend the meeting you can email testimony to counciltestimony@kauai.gov with "Oppose Resolution 2015-37- Support current HB 321" in the subject line.

The meeting will be live streamed.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015


(From 2009)

(PNN)-- April 1— LIHU`E--
More than ten thousand people on island of Kaua`i were indicted and arrested on racketeering charges today as a result of what the FBI called “the biggest corruption and fraud investigation in the bureau’s history.”

“We finally pulled the trigger and busted em all” said Special Agent Richard Stauber. “We were going to arrest just the mayor, his department heads, the county council and most business leaders but after extensive investigation we found complicity from almost every citizen on Kaua`i. most of whom knew about it all but “nevah like say nahting” .

“We busted the whole lot of ‘em with the exception of a few radical activists who turned in the rest and a handful of hippies living in Kalalau Valley and on Secret Beach along with some organic farmers who were blissfully ignorant of anything political.”

“I told ya so,” said news commentator and blogger Andy Parx who, in his daily on-line column, ratted out his neighbors and what he called “my good friends down at the county offices”.

“I knew the corruption ran deep but even I never knew the depth of the entrenched good old boy’s and girls network who either turned a blind eye or actively perpetuated the multitudinous revolving-door, pay-to-play scams, extortion rackets and kickback schemes” said Parx whose reports also served as grand jury evidence.

Standing before a 50 foot by fifty foot chart diagramming the connections between those arrested, Stauber, who spent years undercover disguised as “that funny foreign guy who harasses the county council”, explained how he “disappeared” a few years back after he had gathered enough evidence to start putting together the cases.

“I can’t believe they all fell for the German accent and the slightly off-kilter persona” he said. “It just goes to show the arrogance that made the case so easy.”

Since only one local attorney, Daniel Hempey wasn’t arrested he was appointed to defend those who are currently being held at Vidinha Stadium awaiting processing.

“I have little hope for the higher-ups but am considering pleading “plantation mentality” on the part of the regular working people who didn’t benefit from the system but who knew and were silent” he said.

The cases will be tried in federal court because there were no Kaua`i judges that escaped arrest either.

“Why me” asked Mayor Bernard Carvalho from the federal detention center in Honolulu where he and Council Chair Kaipo Asing are sharing a cell.

“I just got here and was just doing what mayors have done for years- hiring my friends and big campaign contributors for county jobs and looking the other way while everybody took their cut... as long as I got mine” said the 300 pound behemoth while downing a box of malasadas.

Also indicted but not arrested were former Mayor Bryan Baptiste who, it was revealed in the indictments, faked his death last year and escaped to somewhere in South America, shortly after being interrogated by the FBI.

Parx said he’s not surprised but is dismayed because now he won’t have endless daily material for his column.

“With all these guys finally off the streets, I got nothin’ in the immediate future. But I am confident that Kaua`i people will do what they’ve always done- elect some equally or even more corrupt politicians to take their places” he said.

Former Mayor Maryanne Kusaka and Police Chief Darryl Perry escaped arrest and are believed to be hold up in a secret love-nest/fortress in Koke`e where they are reportedly intent on setting up a government-in-exile.

State Department of Conservation and Enforcement officers are said to be closing in on them after the pair stumbled into DLNR’s meth lab in the Alaka`i swamp.

In other news today paramedics rushed to the offices of Governor Linda Lingle where she and Attorney General Mark Bennett were working on legal strategies for the ceded lands and Superferry cases. Efforts to remove their heads from their butts were as yet unsuccessful at press time.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015


Everyone complains about the recent rampant over-development in the Kapa`a "Coconut Coast" corridor on Kaua`i with at least three new resorts already in the pipeline, all approved in willy-nilly fashion by the Kaua`i Planning Commission (PC)... with more slated for approval soon.

And tomorrow (Wednesday 3/25) at 8:30 a.m. people can try to do something about it.

On the Kaua`i County Council agenda is a nomination which, long-time observers say, will likely make things worse.

The nominee is Kimo M. Keawe, a resort and hotel owner who has spent his entire life in management in the resort industry. But the crazy part is that, if approved, he would fill one of two legally-mandated "Environmental" slots on the commission- an area in which Keawe apparently has no experience or credentials.

His "interview" with the council will take place at 8:30 a.m. with the vote scheduled to come up later in the day.

Keawe retired late last year after what the local Kaua`i newspaper described in January as "a four-decade legacy in resort management starting with Coco Palms in the 1970s." The paper said that "over the years he managed and owned several more, including the Hotel Molokai, before serving as manager of The Cliffs at Princeville for the past 14 years.

The environment never came up in the "talk story" interview with the closest description being that he is "an outdoorsman and spent all my off time hunting and fishing."

He is a huge proponent of time shares penning an article in "Time Share Today" in May 2013 entitled "The Cliffs at Princeville- A Self Managed Success Story."

In the 90's Kaua`i Kaua`i voters approved a County Charter Amendment that called for the seven Planning Commission slots to be filled by two each from the environmental, business and labor communities with one position remaining "at-large." But the amendment didn't specify how that requirement would be enforced or even define those three terms. And the council and the commission has failed to pass legislation or rules to give any guidance.

This has allowed people like Keawe- with absolutely no credentials as an environmentalist- to fill those slots.

If you're one of those who complains about the planning commission's recent decisions- especially the approval of Coco Palms and other new resorts in the traffic nightmare of the Kapa`a corridor- show up tomorrow at the council meeting at the historic county building in Lihu`e and ask the council to enforce the charter and reject Keawe. And ask Mayor Bernard Carvalho to nominate a real environmentalist to the commission. Or you can email testimony to counciltestimony@kauai,gov with the subject line "Oppose Keawe nomination for Environmental Planning Co9mmission slot."

The meeting will be live streamed.

Thursday, March 5, 2015


In "The Liar's Paradox" episode of the TV program Star Trek Captain Kirk and Mr. Spock use logic to kill the android by telling it that "everything 'Harry' says is a lie" after which "Harry" tells the android "I am lying."

Smoke begins coming out of the robot's ears as he says "You say you are lying, but if everything you say is a lie, then you are telling the truth, but you cannot tell the truth because everything you say is a lie, but you lie... You tell the truth but you cannot for you lie... illogical! Illogical! Please explain! You are human. Only humans can explain their behavior! Please explain!"

That's sort of how most of us feel when hearing that the international chemical companies in Hawai`i are okay with "voluntarily disclosing" the dates, locations and types of highly toxic "Restricted Use Pesticides (RUPs)" they use in their open-air, biotech experiments but oppose a bill under consideration in the state legislature that would make mandatory the disclosure of that information.

Although they also oppose establishing buffer zones and other health and safety related measures- including allowing the counties to effectively regulate them after the well-documented failures of the state's Departments of Health and Agriculture to do so- let's just focus in on disclosure.

Now what possible reason could there be for their opposition to establishing a law requiring them to do what they claim they are already doing out of the goodness of their black little hearts?

Well in today's local Kaua`i newspaper Paul Oshiro, spokesman for Alexander and Baldwin condescendingly said that "(b)y imposing these mandatory pesticide disclosure requirements without accompanying public education on federal and state pesticide oversight and regulation, this may result in an increase in the number of inquiries, complaints, and non-science based comments and concerns.”

Education? It's been over 60 years since Rachael Carson published the book "Silent Spring," which, according to Wikipedia was "an environmental science book (that) documented the detrimental effects on the environment—particularly on birds—of the indiscriminate use of pesticides. Carson accused the chemical industry of spreading disinformation and public officials of accepting industry claims unquestioningly."

Apparently there are still people who do actually need education. But it's not we androids.

Let's suppose the legislature in all their wisdom decided that "voluntarily disclosing" that you have a valid drivers' license and registration in your possession is all you need when you get pulled over and asked to produce them.

"Oh, s'okay," Keone Bulai tells the officer. "I no like hand 'em ovah. No huhu- I get 'em already."

"Alright- be on your way. The law says that's enough for me," says the officer. "I'm sure glad the legislature made producing documentation voluntary because otherwise it could result in an increase in the number of inquiries, complaints, and non-science based comments and concerns."

So why would Keone refuse to produce his papers but be okay volunteering the information that he has them? Well, it might be because he knows his rights and is simply exercising them because he can. And we don't want to cast aspersions of Mr Bulai's character but his status as a constitutional scholar aside, the only other reason we can think of is because HE IS LYING THROUGH HIS TEETH.

And they wonder why many think the chemical companies are shall we say, being something less than truthful under the voluntary "Good Neighbor" program originally designed to provide political cover to Kaua`i Mayor Bernard Carvalho and the island's contingent of state legislators in their opposition to passage of a local Kaua`i ordinance that established mandatory disclosure (and buffer zones) until it was vetoed by the mayor, overridden by the council and then struck down by a federal judge.

The stream coming out of our ears is, like the android presented with the Liar's Paradox, the result of being unable to process claims like "pesticides are safe," "we always follow the law," "no one is getting sick or injured" and, our favorite, "it's just science you Luddite."

The truth is that it doesn't take a scientist to understand that RUPs are chemicals that are so dangerous that they are not available without special federal licensing and are to be used only after reading, understanding (often by people for whom English is, at best, a second language) and complying with a virtual book-length set of instructions for their use. Or to understand that those directions include a zero tolerance for the pesticides escaping the boundaries of the property upon which they are sprayed- some bordering on schools, hospitals, homes and waterways- in areas where high-speed, swirling winds can pick up without warning.

It certainly doesn't take a scientist to notice the smoke coming out of our ears or for us to know when we're being lied to.

Sunday, February 15, 2015


RE: My piece the other day about the comparisons between statements made by the con man played by Dan Aykroyd on SNL and those of Ag Dept. head Scott Enright in testimony at the buffer zone public hearing at the legislature Thursday.

At the hearing Enright cited that infamous half-assed DOH "study" which tried to say that the amounts of especially toxic Restricted Use Pesticides found in stream bed sediment and other places downwind of the chemical companies open-air pesticide experiments, were safe. The study actually said that the levels were "within acceptable limits" to which someone on Facebook commented that "there are no acceptable amounts of pesticides."

I felt compelled to answer that that's not strictly true, saying:

"Well maybe, although if there were truly one molecule in an ocean of water I wouldn't obsess over it. The problem is that when you find any amounts- even a molecule- in stream sediment as the DOH's so-called "study" did, it is an indicator of there having been massive amounts nearby- enough so that there a presence left where ongoing diffusion has been and is taking place.

Even if you accept that there is an amount that is "acceptable" in a glass of drinking water (usually expressed in "X" parts per million or even billion) it is bad science to presume that that amount is applicable to finding remnant amounts in a nearby stream bed.

In other words if you drink a glass of straight undiluted poison you'll die on the spot. But if you take one drop of that concentrated poison and dilute it in a million gallons of clean water- and keep putting one drop of the new solution in another million gallons of clean water a few times- eventually the resultant mixture would probably be pretty much innocuous... just like having a stream running continuously over the bed.

But that doesn't mean that somewhere, right nearby in that "original source" glass of straight poison that promulgated the eventually "innocuous" solution, there isn't some really toxic stuff.

Friday, February 13, 2015


Despite the seriousness of the subject of Thursday's State Senate hearing on establishing buffer zones for the use of Restricted Use Pesticides (RUP), the almost comic routine by international chemical cartel mouthpieces and second banana Scott Enright, the head of the Department of Agriculture, had many guffawing at the benign "nothing to see here- go back to your pesticide-laden homes" portrayal of some of the most toxic substances on the face of the earth.

It was reminiscent of the classic Dan Aykroyd "Bag o' Glass" Saturday Night Live sketch from the 70's where Aykroyd plays Erwin Mainway, President of Mainway Toys.

Using many of the same ploys that poison-purveyors like Syngenta, Dow and of course Monsanto use to get convince us we're just a bunch of hysterical nut cases, Aykroyd does his con-man best to try to convince "Consumer Probe" host Candice Bergen that what she calls his "so-called harmless playthings"- playthings like Pretty Peggy Ear Piercing Set, Mr. Skin Grafter, General Tron's Secret Police Confession Kit Doggie Dentist and Teddy Bear Chainsaw- are nothing to worry about.

And of the Bag of Glass- a big plastic bag full of, yes, shards of broken glass- Mainway scoffs at the dangers like Enright et. al. defending the use of deadly chemicals adjacent to schools, hospitals, homes in towns like Waimea on Kaua`i.

Ask yourself if this type of folderol sound familiar? As Aykroyd tells Curtain:

"Yeah, well, look - you know, the average kid, he picks up, you know, broken glass anywhere, you know? The beach, the street, garbage cans, parking lots, all over the place in any big city. We're just packaging what the kids want! I mean, it's a creative toy, you know? If you hold this up, you know, you see colors, every color of the rainbow! I mean, it teaches him about light refraction, you know? Prisms, and that stuff! You know what I mean?"

Yeah- it's all just science- whaddaya some kinda Luddite?

"Look, we put a label on every bag that says, 'Kid! Be careful - broken glass!' I mean, we sell a lot of products in the "Bag O'" line.. like Bag O' Glass, Bag O' Nails, Bag O' Bugs, Bag O' Vipers, Bag O' Sulfuric Acid. They're decent toys, you know what I mean?"

Just like RUPs- it's all right there on the label. Everything is safe as long as it's on the label.

There's also action figure Johnny Switchblade Adventure Punk which Aykroyd dismisses by saying "So Barbie takes a knife or Ken gets cut every once in a while. I mean there's no harm in it as far as I can see," later demonstrating the dangers choking on a runaway Nerf Ball.

Finally when Bergen presents him with Alphabet Blocks as an example of a safe toy Aykroyd screams "C'mon, this is harmless? Alright, okay, you call this harmless? [holds block in hand] I mean.. [plays with block and fakes injury] Aagghh!! I got a splinter in here, look at that! This is wood! This is unsanded wood, it's rough!"

Kind of reminds one of industry PR flacks who, with a straight face, try to convince legislators that the REAL problem isn't the literally tons of RUPs blowing all over town but rather the home gardener who uses a few tablespoons of non-RUP Round-up a couple of times a year.

Just like kids want those toys we're told people want pesticides- even in the DNA of their corn, soy beans and glow-in-the-dark goldfish. And hey- what's a few perfectly innocuous pesticides among play-friends?

Just like Mr. Mainway dismisses the dangers of his products, what does it matter if people's homes are coated with neuro-toxins or if they get a giant whiff of them when the winds suddenly pick up. As long as we don't have brown spots on our papayas who cares what happens to a few brown people. We're too busy feeding the world to worry about that.

Saturday, January 10, 2015


Ironic isn't nearly a strong enough term for how corporate pundits use solemn tones in tearful defense of "free speech" when condemning the assassination of the Charlie Hebdo cartoonists, all while actually censoring their work by refusing to re-publish the actual images (much less with translations).

Rolling Stone's Matt Taibbi approached that kind of critique yesterday after he delved into a tangential comparison with the AP's archiving of an image of Andres Serrano's "Piss Christ," which Matt describes as "a set piece of a crucifix submerged in the artist's own urine, caused Serrano to receive death threats back in the day."

But unusually for Taibbi he approaches but missed the mark in his tome.

Here's the Associated Press' lame excuse for condemning the gun-assisted censorship out of one side of their mouths while essentially censoring the cartoons out of the other:

"We’ve taken the view that we don’t want to publish hate speech or spectacles that offend, provoke or intimidate, or anything that desecrates religious symbols or angers people along religious or ethnic lines...We don’t feel that’s useful."

What a pile of horsesh*t.

The reality is that "without fear or favor"- at least in the case of the former- is anything but in play here. It's actually a matter of a lack of any semblance of the courage that presenting the background necessary to understand the "news" would entail. After all, isn't "in depth reporting" what they all claim they strive to do?

Now no one is saying that Brian Williams and Wolf Blitzer need to put their lives on the line and surround themselves with armed bodyguards in order to protect free speech. Fear, if not outright cowardice, is a perfectly acceptable excuse here. But don't give us some gobbledygook about propriety as you present the nightly infotaining celebrity blood-letting which you laughingly call the news.

If The NY times- which issued a similar convoluted "explanation" today- is scared to reproduce these cartoons and inform people as to what exactly these raving religious lunatics had their panties in a bunch over, just say so. But don't hide behind some sort of moralistic doubletalk all the while claiming to stand in solidarity with the people who really have the courage to satirize those who so richly deserve it.