Obama, Navy both take hits
President Obama was on a White House high, the Navy belly-flopped and legislators had money on their minds as we "flASHback" on the week's news that amused and confused:
• The Obama administration is thinking about easing federal enforcement against medical marijuana laws like Hawai'i's. We're in trouble if the best medicine they can come up with for riding out this economy is getting us high.
• The $1 billion warship USS Port Royal ran aground a half-mile off of Honolulu Airport. The confused captain didn't know whether to cry "Mayday!" or "Land Ho!"
• The Navy neglected to inform local authorities that in the process of lightening the Port Royal for towing, they released 5,000 gallons of raw sewage. That's like a guest who crashes his car into your porch and then dumps in your yard.
• A bill in the Legislature would require people opening small businesses to take management classes from the state. Think about that, the state instructing people on how to manage money. Hahahahahahahahahahahahaha!
• Lawmakers are moving to reject federal funds for abstinence-only sex education in the schools. They're afraid if people learn to abstain from getting done nasty, they might become more particular about who they vote for.
• A House committee nixed a bill to ban roadside fundraising groups from sticking fish nets at motorists. Legislators want to keep open the option of extending dip nets from their committee chairs as lobbyists testify.
• Legislators may impose a 50 percent tax on the sale of fireworks. They know that taxing legal fireworks won't get rid of the illegal aerials that are the problem, but it might cover the cost of their 36 percent pay raises.
• The state paid out $70,142 last year to motorists whose cars were damaged by potholes. The really sad thing is they're touting pothole claims are one of our few areas of economic growth.
• The City Council directed the city clerk to study the viability of online voting in local elections. That would make it possible for nonvoters to not show up without getting dressed.
And the quote of the week ... from City Prosecutor Peter Carlisle on a proposed cyber-stalking law: "The goal is to expand the statute to cover all the nasty and cowardly creatures who use cell phones and computers and other devices to harass citizens." And that was just what he thought about people who don't turn off their phones at the movies.