Sponsored by:

Comment, blog & share photos

Log in | Become a member
The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Saturday, April 11, 2009

Musings of Nobel Fleece Prize

By David Shapiro

Economic gloom remains the big story, but other dubious doings spice our "flASHback" on the week's news that amused and confused:

  • The state is threatening to post names of Hawai'i's biggest tax delinquents on the Internet. I wonder if it'll include the 76 folks who gave a $75 million tax credit for a nonexistent Ko Olina aquarium.

  • Speaking of the Legislature, state senators congratulated themselves on their "sacrifice" for giving back 5 percent of their 36 percent pay raises. Looks like they're bucking for a Nobel Fleece Prize.

  • Maui Rep. Joe Bertram told a judge it was an "imaginary crime" when his friend arranged sex with a 14-year-old who turned out to be an undercover cop. That's what I'd call an imaginary conscience.

  • The state and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs are talking compromise to settle the ceded lands dispute without more lawsuits. The Centers for Disease Control is investigating the rare outbreak of common sense.

  • Hawai'i residents work 103 days to pay federal and local taxes before earning money for ourselves. With the Legislature's pay raise down to 31 percent, we can add 1.8 seconds to lunch on the 103rd day.

  • Windward council candidates Steve Holmes and Ikaika Anderson are accusing each other of inflated resumes. John Henry Felix is sitting it out until the debate turns to inflated egos.

  • A study by the Hawai'i Institute of Marine Biology suggests dolphins may not be as sensitive to Navy sonar as ecologists suggest. It must be the shrieking litigants making them deaf.

  • HMSA's proposed 12.7 percent rate hike for small businesses is the biggest increase in two decades. That's enough to make you sick if you can still afford it.

  • The Four Seasons Resort on Lana'i mistakenly warned guests to leave the beach for safety after North Korea launched a dud missile. Disappointed visitors must have drank enough at the bar to float Kim Jong Il's miserable economy.

  • Attorney Gerard Jervis got off with probation for his drunken car chase of teenagers who tossed eggs at his Lanikai home. With Jervis still in circulation, the Easter Bunny is hiring extra security.

    And the quote of the week ... from Transportation Director Wayne Yoshioka on an economical bus the city is testing: "This is kind of like your mama bear: not too big, not too small, just right." With our traffic, she'll need the Chicago Bears to block for her.

    David Shapiro, a veteran Hawai'i journalist, can be reached by e-mail at dave@volcanicash.net. His columns are archived at www.volcanicash.net. Read his blog, Volcanic Ash, at www.HonoluluAdvertiser.com/Blogs.

    Reach David Shapiro at (Unknown address).