Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Musings: Witch Hunt

Just five days after The Garden Island printed a front-page article bashing the proposed dairy at Mahaulepu, it prints a guest editorial that essentially rehashes all the negativity of the original piece.

As a friend noted in a wry text:

Glad TGI managed to find room for more coverage of Bridget Hammerquist's petition.

To which I replied:

Can't have too much propaganda.

And propaganda is exactly what Jenica K Waymen and Michael Coon are advancing in their guest editorial, which raises the specter of “the eddy at Baby Beach in Poipu Beach Park covered with a scum of cow waste!” along with “stinking, black, fly-ridden, manure-polluted shores” and other such nonsense.

Particularly ironic was their fear that dairy operations would spawn “Pollution warning signs warn that the beaches are not safe for human use.”

Actually, Surfrider Kauai already plans to demand that Department of Health “post warning signs on the most polluted streams, whatever the source, as per EPA. Pigs are major reservoir for lepto and other diseases, so DOH should be warning folks.”

So the warning signs that Waymen and Coon dread should already be posted at Mahaulepu, Nawilwili, Wainiha, Hanamaulu and elsewhere, according to Surfrider.

And then what's next? A campaign to eradicate all the wild pigs?

At least Waymen and Coon made it clear where they really stand with the admonition that “Poipu tourism operators” are now duty-bound “to preserve the clean air, water and land that their future guests require and expect. Their loyalty ought to be directed to maintaining these resources for their clients and their businesses, rather than to the landowner, Grove Farm.”

In other words, it's no longer about protecting resources for kanaka, or future generations, or even for the sake of the overall environment, but simply to please the new alii: paying clients. Yet the anti-dairy folks are the first to scream that Hawaii Dairy Farms is all about the money.

But what bothers me even more than the hypocrisy and tourism worship is seeing the anti-diary activists use the same despicable tactics as the anti-GMO activists. Though HDF voluntarily agreed to conduct an EIS, it has already been convicted and sentenced to death, with no trial, facts and studies be damned.

Sadly, TGI reinforces this witch hunt mentality by printing without question articles and guest editorials that make outrageous, unsubstantiated claims. Once again, Kauai people are happily spreading misinformation, outright lies and fear without compunction, all in an effort to stop some perceived evil.

As a friend noted:

The whole thing is based on creating the maximum amount of fear, same with the anti-pesticide/gmo initiative, and it's working. One of the problems with this is that people who are really afraid are generally not thinking very clearly and tend to blindly follow someone who is going to "save them". It's at the root of all of the despotic shit we see coming down all over this planet.

I really don't care if the dairy lives or dies.

But I do worry about the future of agriculture, and common sense, when every viable farming initiative is opposed as “industrial” and “toxic” and a visitor industry that consumes more water and produces more shit than a dairy ever will, while generating tons of trash — and mountains of construction waste in the inevitable remodels — is revered as sustainable and benign.

And I care deeply about the downward slide of this community when I see people repeatedly taking the low road of dishonesty, fear-mongering and propaganda in order to get their way.  

Because where do you go from there? Burning at the stake? Lynch mobs? Nowhere good, that's for certain.

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

Ungulates--wild goats and pigs--are a big problem in Hawaii, which since 2003 has been addressed by various watershed partnerships on all the islands. Free roaming pigs destroy native habitat in the watershed and threaten our water supply and safety. Eradicating every pig may be impossible, but controlling them is essential, and local hunters play an important role. http://hawp.org/partnerships/kauai-watershed/what-we-do/

Joan Conrow said...

I am very familiar with the environmental issues associated with ungulates and the role that local hunters play in managing the population.

However, hunters want to maintain a population of game animals, which seems to conflict with the water quality goals of the anti-dairy folks and Surfrider.

Hunters should be aware that they could be the next target.

Anonymous said...

I think Monsanto makes a product that can get rid of the pigs...

Alan Gottlieb said...

Joan - I read that as well, and while I have always been sensitive to and supportive of our number one industry and economic driver, the visitor industry, it really boils my butt that Hotel folks on Kauai are suing legitimate ag interests and using the anti's to fight a dairy on ag land (isn't that hotel on rezoned ag land?). As contrary as it is to my beliefs, us aggies and our sane friends need to start to compile some statistics on how much manure and urine flow from their hotel guests in Poipu on a daily basis and is dumped in the ocean, as well as all the carbon produced from all that jet fuel every day and all the unsustainable waste that is the Kauai visitor industry. Two can play that game.

Anonymous said...

Wow. What a mess. So, now we have pro Dairy, and pro tourism. Or is that anti Dairy, and anti tourism?

I can't keep the antis and the pros straight anymore.

So, can someone be an anti gmo, pro dairy? Or perhaps, a Pro Tourism, pro gmo, anti dairy?

The combinations are literally endless.

Are they too be called Dairy Fistees now? Or Tourism Shills?

Which is it?

Bottom line is, every single development in the pipe will be done, at the same time, cumulatively. It will be impossible to fight them all, or figure out which side you are on any more.

Seriously. Is this the 2015 we all have to look forward too? More divisions? More name-calling? While we are all fighting these little fires against each other, our island is being totally changed, overrun, and transformed into something that none of us are even going to recognize five years from now.

Its over folks.

Tourism and developing million dollar homes for the rich, and affordable mansions for the trust fund babies won. That's it. Hands down.

It will be virtually impossible for a small farmer to exist anymore, and all organic farming will be wiped off the face of Kauai, along with the GMo's

Think I am wrong? See me in five years. It will be a concrete jungle, height limits will be gone, and we will have Waikiki in Hanalei.

Anonymous said...

There are conclusive, peer-reviewed studies that show that ungulates, if fed organic hemp, well...it reveals that their poop don't stink. And we can wear their skins for clothing as well.

Makaala Kaaumoana said...

It should be noted that in Hanalei 50% of the pollutants enter the river "above" habitation. Think about it!

Anonymous said...

The other 50% comes from vacation rentals. I'll take pigs over tourists any day.

Anonymous said...

@5:15 PM - And just how many vacation rentals are on the Hanalei River? None! Go back to bed, bozo.

Anonymous said...

What, you don't think anything in Hanalei town washes into the river? Wake up.

Anonymous said...

So 9:12 AM, since everything in Hanalei Town washes into the river as you claim, why did you before that blame solely vacation rentals that aren't even on the river as you indicated? Sounds like brainlessness to me. You must be an "Anti" with that logic. Surprised you're not blaming GMO's for the pollution in the Hanalei river.

Chuck Lasker said...

Alan Gottlieb - The Hyatt joined in the anti-dairy fear-mongering campaign simply to distract the antis from themselves. The dairy could have 10 times the cows and still be less polluting than the Hyatt.

It's the same reason Hawaii Life got behind the anti-GMO fear-mongering, to distract the antis from their massive push for more mansions (especially ag-exempted fake farms with mansions).

The reason the anti-dairy folks sound the same as the anti-GMO folks is they are the same folks. They're anti anything that will give them an excuse to be angry, to have free concerts, to convince themselves they're "saving the world" or at least "malamaing the aina." They scramble all over each other to be the most vocal, the most noticed of the antis, screaming, "look at me, I'm doing things not for myself, look, look at me being selfless! LOOK... AT... ME!"

Anonymous said...

Bad for marketing if the Hyatt loses. Will they tell their guests what they say in the lawsuit?