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LETTERS for the July 25 issue

By Staff | Jul 25, 2019

Failing to prepare to plan is planning to fail!

West Maui Taxpayers Association met with the mayor and asked him to be sure to let us work together with the Maui Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) and to use the WMTA and our plan as a resource as we examine an After Action Report on the recent fires and flooding issues.

We lobbied the County Council to add two persons to the MEMA staff. Hurricane season is just around the corner. The brush has grown back where the fires were and become another fire hazard waiting to happen.

We need to find out what went right and what went wrong during these last fires and floods. Preparing in advance and placing importance on that now can literally save lives!

Through all the legwork, testifying and community rallies we have done, we have made small improvements, but with an ever-growing population and visitors in the islands, we need more.

The West Maui Community Plan (planning for the next 20 years) is in the works. A Community Plan Advisory Committee (CPAC) has been formed to be a voice on this plan that will become law.

I have been chosen to be on the committee, which brings hope because all that we have fought for now is closer to reality as the committee meets and discusses what will go in the plan. The West Maui Community Plan will become law.

Together, we can make a difference! Membership dues are the foundation of our organization, as it allows us the necessities to keep our administrative books in order and keep our presence in the community and important meetings. Today, we ask you go to beyond that. In addition, we want your support to our Political Action Effort for the 2020 elections, to provide you with our recommendations of who on the County Council and other governmental representatives should be elected, who understand fiscal responsibility and action over political rhetoric.

We have saved West Maui property owners millions of dollars in reduced fire insurance premiums when we built our own Napili Fire and Ambulance Station. Lives have been saved. Please consider how much money we saved you already. We know people who say that the ambulance from Napili literally saved their lives.

How much support from you is that worth? We ask you to join us in meeting our goal of $250,000 for our Political Campaign and hiring an executive director.

You can be a part of the solution or part of the problem. The choice is up to you. Please choose wisely and send us a generous donation today. Mahalo!



Hate-filled letter can’t go unanswered

I just caught up with a letter in Lahaina News a couple weeks ago attacking Sen. Mazie Hirono.

Normally I don’t write about current affairs, but the letter cannot go unanswered.

Bashing “left wing liberals” is divisive. We are one country. If we don’t stop looking at every issue through the prism of partisanship, we are not going to make much progress in solving the country’s many challenges.

The writer claims “all of a sudden, our environmental problems have been brought about by human behavior, and that is the fault of Trump.”

Thinking people do not say Trump is responsible for climate change. We do say that his policies on the environment are setting us back big time.

The Environmental Protection Agency was launched four decades ago. Under Trump, the Paris Accords, an all-world agreement to curtail emissions, was scrapped. Instead of better controls on oil and coal producers, the EPA head dropped rules that keep them from polluting waters and the air. Now you can drill in the Arctic and along the entire East Coast.

With this agency and many others, Trump has appointed lobbyists for the industries they are supposed to regulate.

One need only look at the record high temperatures (even on Maui), the unprecedented and more frequent wildfires in the west, the unprecedented swath of tornadoes plaguing almost a quarter of the nation, and unprecedented flooding throughout the south and extending even to Washington, D.C. (unheard of).

The EPA story of gutting regulations is repeated in agency after agency.

“Donald has brought about tremendous advantages to the general public, minorities, the elderly and youth and small business, and great programs,” the writer said.

So where are the great programs? Putting immigrant children into cages under unspeakable conditions? Reducing (not increasing) taxes for the rich – higher tax revenues that could improve infrastructure are not available. And by the way, where is the new infrastructure Trump promised?

Is a great program dropping the nuclear deal with Iran that brought their weapons program under control? Now they are back enriching uranium for bombs, with the boisterous posturing bringing us closer to war?

And how about actions that are destroying our decades-long solid relationships with our allies in Europe? And then being a terrible, undignified, immoral role model for our kids, who hear words they have never heard before from a president?

And denigrating women? And saying racists in Charlotte are nice people?

And what about his statement that Trump has increased “positivity,” whatever that is? So why are there unprecedented attacks on almost everyone who opposes the president? So why is America more decisive than ever before, and polls show Americans are saying the country is moving in the wrong direction.

We are lucky to have Mazie Hirono, who recently has become more prominent nationally.

Forgoing the temptation to call the letter writer names (like he does in numerous paragraphs) takes some restraint. The enlightened among us, however, would never do that. Instead, we will have our voices heard through the ballot box as soon as we have a chance.

NORM BEZANE, Kaanapali