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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Saturday, May 22, 2004

Letters to the Editor

How can state have clear title to stolen land?

There are important legal questions that must be answered before the state begins to evict Hawaiians. Are the lands at Kahana ceded lands? Does the state have clear title to the so-called ceded lands?

U.S. Public Law 103-150 says that 1.8 million acres of Hawaiian Kingdom lands were "ceded" without consent or compensation to the Native Hawaiian people or their sovereign government. The same law says that the overthrow was "illegal." So the question is, how can the state have clear title to any lands that were taken illegally?

Steven Tayama

Mismanaged harbors need to be privatized

"The state owning 90 percent of harbors ... has led to a shortage of space for boats," wrote Stuart Hayashi in Thursday's Island Voices, adding that "20 percent of the slips have been closed."

Words cannot describe the condition of the state-managed harbors in Hawai'i. If you just retired or just moved to Hawai'i or just became interested in boating in this place we call Paradise — a string of islands surrounded by tradewind sailing, coastal or deep-sea fishing, and tropical weather — don't buy a boat.

In many state harbors, the waiting list exceeds a decade. On O'ahu, you may be able to get a slip at one of the private marinas, but there are no private harbors on the Neighbor Islands.

The state-managed harbors need more than $200 million to clear the maintenance backlog while newspaper headlines scream for more funding in education, police and teacher pay raises, drug programs, highway expansion and sewer improvements.

The state does not have $200 million to fix the harbors, nor can slip fees support such an amount.

Frustrated with the mismanagement of the state harbors, we have created www.HawaiiBoaters.org as a grassroots (barnacles up) organization advocating privatization of the state harbors. On the Web site, photos, reports and media articles detail the problems. It is time to convert this dysfunctional liability into a jewel that creates jobs, increases tax revenue and supports boating.

Dennis K. Biby
Founder, Hawai'iBoaters.org

Rainstorm couldn't spoil 120th anniversary

I would like to thank all the people who came out in the pouring rain Saturday, May 15, to help Kuhio Elementary School celebrate its 120th anniversary.

The Kuhio School Community Association (PTA) had been planning this lu'au celebration for about five months. With all the effort we put into it, we weren't going to let a rainstorm ruin it.

We had some great entertainment by the band Inoa'ole, Kalo's South Seas Revue, the Kuhio School Choir, the Kuhio Performance Group, a storyteller from McCully Library and conch shell blowers Poasa Aga, Steven Takeifanga and Michael Takeifanga. We also had a wonderful chant by Keanu Lockwood.

I would like to acknowledge the PTA board members who worked long hours to pull this off: Sharon Tsukahara-Odo (secretary), Ron Lockwood (treasurer), and Ane Aga and Derek Kauanoe (parents at large).

To everyone, mahalo for your support.

Darcy Takeifanga

Fans have a better deal just staying at home

So the University of Hawai'i athletic department is in the red because the "big four" ticket sales are down. It doesn't take much thinking on this many-years, multiple-sport, season-ticket-holder's part to figure out the reason.

Why should fans pay high ticket prices and deal with traffic, inadequate parking and less than fan-friendly stadium rules to attend games? They can stay home and watch the games live on TV free or at a fraction of what it would cost to actually attend.

Why buy the cow when the milk is free?

Sonya Richter-Smith

It's time to overhaul the bulky automobile

Carrying 2,000 to 3,000 pounds of steel and rubber around to commute to work each day does not convince me that it is an effective way of saving gas. We should aggressively use tax incentives, regulations and penalties to encourage the automakers in using lightweight materials and energy-efficient engines in car manufacturing.

The basic design of automobiles has not changed since the invention of the first gasoline-powered wagon a little over 100 years ago. Since then, cars have gotten bigger and heavier but not necessarily more energy efficient.

The demand for more processing power and more reliable software have prompted hardware and software manufacturers to make faster and more reliable computer chips and software. It took 20 years and global effort to force Microsoft into compliance and fixing its buggy software. I think it is time for the auto industry to do the same.

Peter Hwu