Thursday, March 20, 2008

Musings: No Respect

Faint Venus brightened up when she freed herself from thick clouds and then was lost again in the glow of a yellow sun struggling to break through the gray gloom before it, too, gave up and gave in, suffusing charcoal rain clouds with pink.

Today is the vernal equinox, the day when the sun moves into Aries, signaling the start of spring, new life, new beginnings, hope springs eternal, that sort of thing. I must confess my own war-torn thoughts weren’t quite that bright and cheery as Koko and I went walking, but I could smell the promise of it all around us in the heady sweetness of citrus blossoms, the perfume of spider lily.

Ran into my neighbor Andy, who gave me a brief update on the contested case hearing that started this week over the mansion planned for Kilauea. Aside from the massiveness of the project, there’s the location to be considered. The guy wants to erect the monument to his wealth on land overlooking Kahili Beach, near the Kilauea river mouth.

It’s on land the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service had planned to buy next year to expand the Kilauea refuge and give the public access to the river and falls, but Mr. Big Bucks beat the feds to the punch. Guess the realtor just couldn’t wait to make the sale.

I got the figures wrong last time I wrote about this project. The house itself isn’t 35,000 square feet. Instead, that’s the combined total of the main house, the caretaker’s house and the barn, which itself comes in at 5,000 square feet. Kala mai.

Still, who really needs that much personal space? Used to be people who moved to Kauai tried to fit in, be a part of things, build houses that weren’t so outlandishly out of place and touch. But that concept has gone out the window.

As my friend Eddie, one of the Wainiha boyz, observed:

“The haoles are coming in so fast you can’t keep up. They taking over the place. With the haoles here now, it’s not so bad because they came in slow and we could teach ‘em. We gave some of them guys dirty lickins, but they learned the right way to do things and now they know. They paid their dues. They show respect. But now there’s so many of them, and they coming in so fast, we don’t even have time for give all these new guys dirty lickins. They getting in without paying their dues. They do any kine stuff. They got no respect.”

Meanwhile, at the other end of the island chain, we’re getting a good reminder of who’s really in charge in the Islands, who really deserves some respect. According to an article in The Advertiser:

The first explosive eruption at Kilauea volcano in almost a century scattered boulders and smaller rocks over 75 acres of Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park in the middle of the night when no one was around.

“Oh, but Pele stay up,” said a friend, who called early, when I read him that bit over the phone.

Yes, Pele stay up, and she’s restless. Wonder what other surprises she has in store?

It came as no surprise that Kauai had the biggest turnout in the state when the Superferry EIS scoping hearings were held here yesterday. I think The Garden Island summed up the sentiments pretty well:

Residents remain concerned about the impact that a large-capacity ferry service could have on the environment, traffic and culture in Hawai‘i but few seem to have faith in state officials’ ability or willingness to eliminate or mediate this threat.

Gee, I wonder when the citizens lost faith? Was it during the back room deals that led to the exemption from an environmental review in the first place? The arm twisting that got the Lege to adopt a Superferry-approved bill to let the big boat run without an EIS? The drydocking that takes the boat out of commission during the period when an oversight committee is supposed to be determining if the operating conditions imposed on the ferry in the interim are stringent enough?

I found the comments posted on the Star-Bulletin article about the meeting quite interesting. People sure have a strange idea about Kauai. Why do you suppose we get under their skin like that?

Anyway, if you missed the hearing and sitll want a chance to express your concerns, comments will be accepted through March 24. Fax to 808-538-7819 or mail to Lesley A Matsumoto, Belt Collins Hawaii Ltd, 2153 North King St., Suite 200, Honolulu, HI 96819.

Mahalo to LightLine for disseminating that info from John Tyler.


Andy Parx said...

And no email testimony... Wonder who made that decision? I'd love to hear the rationale for that.

Anonymous said...

RE: Pele. It was about time she got upset with all the bad stuff going on there!

Anonymous said...

I don't think I have ever heard of an explosion of that magnitude in Halemaumau crater in my lifetime here in Hawaii. Josephine

Andy Parx said...

The US Park Service says the last explosion was 1924. Glad we have the trades right now with all that SO2 in the air there.