Letters To The Editor
October 11, 2006 - MidWeek
Ballot box stuffers
Don Chapman’s column “Why We Don’t Endorse Candidate” was a breath of fresh air.
I’ve always felt uncomfortable when anonymous newspaper writers suggest our voting priorities. It insinuates that we as voters don’t know enough to make proper choice without their education. Perhaps they consider an “intelligent voter” an oxymoron.
In truth, I’ve always felt it was more like hooded inquisitors or the Ku Klux Klan using and hiding behind obscurity. But it’s more serious than that. Trying to swing voter’s opinion with incomplete or opinionated information, in essence, disenfranchises the voter and becomes a means of ballot box stuffing. The information they promulgate could not be disseminated near polling places on the day of the election but more importantly, the newspapers are trying to control the outcome of the election and are disingenuous if they state otherwise.
As an example, editorial opinions of the Honolulu Advertiser, whose editorial salaries are paid for by advertising and newspaper subscriptions, are now being used by the Akaka campaign as support for his candidacy. So my money is going to support a candidate for whom I may or may not wish to vote. This is being done not only in the guise of education via a theoretically well-reasoned article that presents Akaka’s pros and cons and damns Case with faint praise. Egregious? You bet! Although mentioning some of the minor problems Akaka has, nowhere in the Advertiser editorial supporting Akaka does it mention a most significant problem, Mr. Akaka’s age. Akaka is 82, and it’s a six-year term. What are the chances of his truly completing the term at age 88? Perhaps about as good a Gerald Coffee’s? Do you think an insurance company or any actuarial would feel otherwise?
Yet this very serious oversight, which can only be construed as intentional, suggests in this instance how strongly the Advertiser is trying to affect the outcome. Rest assured, Mr. Akaka and the Democratic Party are aware of Mr. Akaka’s frailties.
It’s my bet as an outsider that after a year or two and the Advertiser editorials’oversight has been long forgotten, Mr. Akaka will either become disabled or step aside allowing the Democratic Party to choose whom they want to carry out his term. Through biased reporting via an editorial, the voter has been in essence taken out of the loop. Who do you think his replacement will be? Well I suppose Neil Abercrombie. He’s paid his dues but isn’t very popular hence getting him in through the back door is a safer bet. Oh well, we’ll just have to see how it plays out.
Jack Scaff Jr. M.D.,
Manners = aloha
I appreciate MidWeek carrying the Miss Manners column. Our world, and our town, is so full of rudeness, you are providing a wonderful social service.
Really, good manners are no more than an expression of your aloha for other people.
Congratulations to MidWeek on being the best read newspaper in Hawaii. I’m not a journalist, but I am an avid reader, and it seems to me that MidWeek is so popular because it’s so local.
The Oct. 4 issue is a perfect example - stories about cleaning up alien seaweed, a profile on the symphony’s new executive director, a cover story on a landmark company changing names and management, and columns on everything from local politics to fashion to sports, plus photos of local events, Roy Chang’s cartoon and a free TV directory. Mix in a few columns from national figures and you’ve got everything I need. Oh, and I love the grocery savings, too. Thanks, and keep up the good work.
Good for Melveen
What a nice story (Old Friends) on Melveen Leed. Her singing has brought happiness to so many people, it’s great to see that Melveen is so happy in her life now, too.
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