Gosh, things are getting serious on the Big Island, what with Mayor Billy Kenoi declaring a state of emergency around dengue fever.
Seems it's the largest outbreak in the Islands since the 1940s, with 250 confirmed cases.
As Reuters reports, in a story inexplicably accompanied by a photo of Waikiki:
As a result of [the emergency] order people on the Big Island will be allowed to resume disposing of old tires in landfills, since tires which are left lying around are a known breeding spot for mosquitoes.
Wow. Now that's some aggressive eradication action. For sure that's gonna stop the spread.
Looks like Monsanto is getting tired of being everybody's whipping boy. Today's edition of The Garden Island features a letter from Daniel Goldstein, the company's Science Affairs Lead and Associate Medical Director, who identifies himself as a pediatrician and a father before blasting the “incorrect and misleading information” about glyphosate (Roundup) contained in two recent letters to the editor. He goes on to say:
Contrary to unsubstantiated claims, often promoted by groups with political aims, it does not cause a litany of health harms.
Talk about a losing cause. Monsanto could have folks working round the clock, and they'd still never scratch the surface of all the “incorrect and misleading information” perpetuated by “groups with political aims.”
It brings to mind testimony submitted by Zachary Hitchcock, chair of the Oahu Surfrider chapter, on the pesticide disclosure bill:
Pesticides are dangerous. A combination of chemicals and pesticides is even more so.
Hmmm. Which chemicals do you suppose he meant? Hydrogen? Oxygen? Sodium? Chloride?
And this is the group that is conducting “scientific research” on Kauai and attempting to dictate agricultural policy statewide.
Speaking of groups with political aims, Gary Hooser's HAPA might want to check out the IRS rules a little more carefully. The group is hoping to develop candidates through its “Kuleana Academy,” which bills itself as “a non-partisan candidate training program” while offering workshops in “progressive values.”
According to IRS rules (emphasis added):
Training for political campaign workers; limited to one political party— An organization that operates a school to train individuals to fill responsible positions in political campaigns does not qualify for exemption under IRC 501(c)(3) where it fails to establish that it operates on a nonpartisan basis.
In American Campaign Academy v. Commissioner, 92 T.C. 1053 (1989), the court concluded that the organization, an outgrowth of similar training programs sponsored by the National Republican Congressional Committee, operated for the private benefit of Republican entities and candidates, who were not members of a charitable class. Although the organization had no formal requirement that candidates for admission be affiliated with any particular political party, the evidence suggested that most of its graduates went on to work in Republican campaigns, and the organization offered no evidence of a graduate who was affiliated with a domestic political party other than the Republican party.
Ain't no way HAPA can claim its Kuleana Academy is nonpartisan. Shoots, just look at its partners:
Community Alliance on Prisons, Hawaii Americans For Democratic Action, Hawaii Appleseed Center for Law & Economic Justice, Hawaii Center for Food Safety, Hawaii People's Fund, Hawaii SEED, Hawaii Thousand Friends, KAHEA, Life of the Land, Maui Tomorrow, and UNITE HERE! Local 5.
There's not a Republican within a mile of those folks.
But isn't that just like Gary, who believes the rules never apply to him.
Similarly, the Hawaii Center for Food Safety, which claims to be an educational nonprofit, just engaged in a blatant email appeal to secure $100,000 for lobbying:
HCFS is working hard on key food and agriculture legislation. To advance this platform, HCFS staff will collectively spend over 1,000 hours empowering our members to engage in the civic process. But this work costs money. The cost to develop educational materials and conduct trainings for grassroots advocacy during legislative session is nearly $100,000.
First, it's laughable to think they're spending $100,000 on “grassroots training” – more like fly people in to testify – or educational materials. What, they're printed with 14k gold ink? But they do need to pay the salary of Director Ashley Lukens, who is a registered lobbyist.
Ashley's operation is basically a branch office of the CFS national organization. So let's say she raises $100,000 to lobby the legislature ragged. I doubt that the Hawaii CFS office operates on a $500,000 annual budget. It would have to for the $100K to represent 20% of the overall budget in keeping with the IRS stipulation. But Hawaii CFS doesn't file an independent tax return. CFS in DC does. And the $100K for lobbying could easily fit their much larger expenditures.
Put it another way: For lobbying purposes, we're "ground zero" but for tax reporting purposes, we're incidental. Or, as W.C. Fields said, "the beautiful bozo, high and dry!"
And yet we have reporters like Nathan Eagle blithely describing CFS as a "nonprofit" and the gullible, like Michael Bishop in his rant against "industrial ag," still believing that this mainland-driven and funded anti-GMO movement is all about "home rule."