Letters To The Editor

Don Chapman
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November 04, 2009 - MidWeek
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A cartoonish view

Here’s a question for Rick Hamada: Is there a point at which public services deteriorate so much that you would actually favor a tax increase to remedy the situation?

In his latest column, Mr. Hamada implies that a tax hike, even one aimed at helping our public schools, simply represents government “thirst” for more and more money. In addition to its extreme cynicism, this cartoon-ish portrayal of government as a thirsty vampire (substitute money for blood) offers no solution to the problem of adequately funding our public schools. Likewise, while advising Gov. Lingle to lay off the Hurricane Relief Fund, Mr. Hamada expressed no concern at all for the closed schools and the education lost.What happened to No Child Left Behind? It appears that when tax increases become a viable option, Mr. Hamada and his ilk prefer the slogan All Children Left Behind.

Todd Shelly
Hawaii Kai


No school taxes

I agreed with former teacher Ms. Murchison’s letter about the decision to cut school funding until her last paragraph: “Raise the damn taxes.“I assume she would never consider that Hawaii has the highest management structure of any state, yet we cut hours of education while management funding continues to grow. My son has his kids in private school because the public school system is a joke, yet Ms. Murchison wants more money to support children in a failed system. The system needs discipline, morality and revision in top-down structure to recover, not higher taxes.

Bill Baker

Remembering Rell

Mahalo to Ron Mizutani for a wonderful column on Rell Sunn. Everyone she touched was better for it. I used to think of Rell as a walking blessing. Can hardly wait to see the movie about her too-short life.

Emily Silva
Pearl City

Party town?

Regarding Bob Jones’ big idea to create a sort of “French Quarter"party area of Honolulu: Great, encourage people to drink and party more! Why not include a gay party area, too? That’ll really give us a good name.

Jack Lee

No responsibility

Larry Price has it exactly right: We’re in this terrible Furlough Friday situation precisely because nobody is really in charge, and not truly responsible for our schools. Can’t we create a better organization?

Helen Ikeda

Do your share

I continue to be amazed by the audacity of our government workers. When times are plump, these folks think nothing of taking raise after raise in pay - regardless of the fact that those members of the community in the private sector are looking at stagnant pay scales or reductions in jobs.

With the current economy requiring cutbacks,they whine and grumble about having to accept cutbacks in either pay or hours. When they receive raises, they loudly let the community know that there is no additional work to be expected for this raise in pay.

Likewise, why is there any different expectation when pay must be reduced for budget purposes? Why should the community expect that these employees should perform less for their reduced pay, anymore than the community can expect that these employees should perform more when they’ve received the increases in pay? I feel that the furlough program is more than generous in allowing the reduced payroll to be reflected in a reduction of work expected. I’d expect the government employees to continue to provide their full number of hours, as previously expected under their former pay scale,at the reduced payroll.

I find it exceptionally shameful that the University of Hawaii professional staff would accept raises of more than 8 percent in their last bargaining agreement,but will not accept a similar reduction based on the reduced state revenues - and then try to blame the administration for hurting the students.

Nancy Calhoun

Send your letters to MidWeek Letters, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., Suite 500, Honolulu, HI. 96813; by fax to 585-6324, or by email to dchapman@midweek.com. Please include your name, address and daytime and evening phone numbers. We print only the letters that include this information, but only your name and area of residence will appear in print. Letters may be edited for clarity and space.
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