Now that Vandana Shiva and Center for Food Safety have declared 2015 the “year of home rule” — by which they mean blindly following the directives of folks based in India and Washington, D.C. — we're going to see that catch phrase popping up in all sorts of unlikely places.
Like water use. Or more specifically, calls to designate Lihue and the Keauhou area of the Big Island as ground water management areas.
Somehow, both actions are being hailed as “home rule,” when in reality, they're taking control of water resources out of county hands, and giving it to the state Commission on Water Resource Management (CWRM).
Unfortunately, ill-informed activists don't have a clue what's going down, as evidenced by their fawning response to Hawaii Island Mayor Billy Kenoi's testimony at a Dec. 10 meeting of CWRM.
Billy was clearly speaking against a petition by the National Parks Serviceto designate the Keauhou Aquifer System Area in North Kona a Ground Water Management Area when he testified:
….And when we see this come, get this whiff of paternalism. We feel like the county being paternalistically patted on the head to say, you guys don't know what you're doing. We gotta come in and help you guys because you don't know what you're doing.
Show me the science, show me the law, show me the violation. Nobody need come in tell us we doing something wrong. I'd be the first one to hold the Department of Water Supply, the Water Commission accountable.
You look at the petition, get words like “threaten, degradation, imminent harm, diminishing of resources and you're like wow.... so I go through it one by one. No more the threaten, no more the harm. Oh, but it's in the future, they say.
Bring out the science. Show the facts. It's not about ideology or political leanings. It hurts, I'm offended, when people say us, them, you and not me.
I started getting small time hurt because you feel like you trying to smile, but you really saying we don't know what we doing, or we don't know how, or we don't care and that's not the case I think. So this petition should be looked at through the science, through the facts, through the law.
Yet misguided folks like Dustin Barca and his followers somehow came to believe that Billy was speaking in favor of the ground water management area, and that such a designation is a good thing, in terms of “home rule.” Nor did they seem to realize that Kauai Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. is on the same page as Billy on this issue.
As Dustin wrote on Facebook in posting a link to Billy's videotaped testimony:
Carvalho is having Lihue development celebrations as if Grove Farm's money is already in the bank, ignoring the native pleas to save our water ways and designate Lihu'e a water management area so that our ancient lo'i can survive. EVERYBODY wake up there is a silent battle going on in Lihu'e at this very moment!
It was followed by a string of comments:
Joanna Wheeler CastrodelaMata Time for another march?
Kevan Kraushaar Now, that's a leader who deserves his position. Who understands the permanence of kuleana over the impermanence of money. I voted for you because I believed that you could do the same for Kauai
D.j. Halligan I have to say after watching this entire video, the mayor is probably the most honest politician I've ever seen, speaking from. The heart, very few in this world today!
Patnitz Nakaula Loved every speech by Mayor Kenoi. And that's true what he stated, being caregivers to the land as elected officials and government employees is temporary, but what they leave behind is permanent. The island of Kauai really needs someone of high integrity like Mayor Kenoi.
Tomasso Gambino I think working outside of politics and democracy is what is needed now.
Polli C. Oliver So inspiring. Thanks for sharing. One could only hope & pray for that kind of enlightened leadership
James Chuck Ridings Been out of touch a bit....What's Billy's speech on turning the biotech companies around or out of Hawaii permanently....???? Move to Ban All Gmos and the unnecessary use of herbicides and man-made toxic chemicals...yesterday.....!!!!!
Nathan Ubando "BILLY" 4 "GOVERNOR""" "OUTSTANDING" "SPEAKER""""" One "SMART HAWAIIAN" HEeeeeee Pono,,,,,,,,,,,
Fabienne Christe MARCH!MARCH!MARCH! Impeach the Mayor! Is he not sitting illegal on his throne?
Thomas K. Bogar He is the poison that affects the land
Marleen Brown Planning commission is where you have to be on..and now..no excuse..be there
Kanai Durant via Migz Graham
Everybody should watch this!!! Blew my mind! Amazing man! Carvalho should take notes!
Jon Barretto Ask um to come Kauai! ·
OMG! Can people really be this ignorant, this misinformed?
Sadly, the answer is yes. Which is why they're so easily manipulated, just as they were with the GMO/pesticide issue.
Supporters of both the Lihue and West Hawaii petitions claim the goal is not to stop development, only to make sure water is “used responsibly.”
But in the case of Lihue, the aim is clearly to stop Grove Farm from any further development, as Dustin's call to action makes plain.
A water management designation wouldn't stop Grove Farm from selling vast swaths of land to billionaires, as happened at Kipu Kai, or developing ag land into upscale gentleman's estates.
However, it could stymie plans to build low-to-middle income housing in the area between Hanamaulu and Lihue.
And once again, like in the GMO fight, we see this curious alliance between environmentalists and the tourism industry. According to the West Hawaii petition (emphasis added):
“Waters that support fisheries, tourism, subsistence, and cultural heritage are at risk.”
WTF? Since when have tourism, subsistence, and cultural heritage been compatible? And why is tourism a top priority for water use, right up there with subsistence and cultural heritage?
Ground water management areas can be useful tools for protecting water. But as Billy Kenoi points out, they should be based on science and facts, not ideology and politics.
Unfortunately, with sheeple like Barca and Kauai County Councilman Gary Hooser pushing the petition, facts and science are once again being overlooked in favor of political ideology, hysteria, misinformation and meaningless slogans.
So long as Vandana Shiva and CFS are leading Hawaii "progressives" by the nose, it looks like 2015 is destined to be a rehash of 2014, in terms of community polarization, no meaningful political gains, bad legal precedents and the celebration of ignorance.
To borrow a line from Dustin:
EVERYBODY wake up
Especially you, Dustin. Puhleeze.