Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Musings: Kooky

Ever get the feeling the Islands have gotten kinda kooky?

Over on the Big Island, telescope technician Tony Sylvester posted this Facebook account of a frightening incident that occurred yesterday morning at the Very Long Baseline Array, just below the Mauna Kea summit:

Attacked and assaulted today just because we work at one of the telescopes on Mauna Kea. The suspect gained entry by ramming our gates then used his vehicle to ram our outer steel doors multiple times and proceed to beat on our inner doors so much that we had to barricade the doors with desks and chairs till the police arrived.
The suspect was so full of hate as he peered through the crack between the doors. What a horrible and terrifying experience. Tomorrow is a special event held at the Mauna Kea visitors center to celebrate the one year anniversary of the TMT protest. It is so sad to see what Hawaii has become.
Here is the vehicle used to break down our doors. Lucky, we were able to get out of the way before getting crushed by this action. We were terrorized for one and a half hours before help arrived. The suspect destroyed our communications box so we were trapped and lost contact with the police dispatch. Our vehicles were also damaged by the suspect."
James Coleman — a haole guy from Kona — was arrested on suspicion of criminal property damage. He may also face charges of burglary and terroristic threatening, according to the Hawaii Tribune-Herald.

Meanwhile, it's nothing but “love and collaboration” over on Maui, where they're plotting the seizure of the HC&S sugar cane land.

“This is something we're doing out of love, not out of anger,” said Bruce Douglas, co-founder of SHAKA, the group that pushed the Maui anti-GMO moratorium that got thrown out of court. 

Now he's peddling an initiative that would condemn the sugar lands so they could be turned into “regenerative agriculture,” instead of gentleman's estates. You know, like the ones sold by SHAKA co-founder and Realtor Mark Sheehan.

Lorin Pang, the anti-GMO activist who moonlights as the Maui state health officer, admitted the idea came about because the antis ran out of ammo when their enduring enemy, HC&S, announced its closure:

“Now we're a little bit stuck, yeah. We can't say, stop those bad things. They say, we did.”

So instead of just being against everything, they had to find something they could be for. 

Their solution: Condemn A&B's sugar cane land, using money from general revenue bonds, so it can be turned over to all the wanna-bee farmers who are currently being denied, according to Douglas, their constitutional right to “agriculturally suitable lands.”

“It's for the public good,” Pang said. “It's not for profit.”

Meanwhile, Douglas was promising “full employment” for the island with this profit-less venture, which no doubt will be embraced by all the altruistic farmers who want to toil in the fields solely for the love of the aina and their fellow human beings.

And that was just the tip of the bullshit iceberg. Among Douglas' other wrong claims: Maui is the only county that elects Council members at large (hello, what about Kauai?); HC&S brought in and burned coal so its sugar ships didn't have to return empty from the mainland (uh, those ships came back empty 80% of the time); Maui sea turtle tumors are caused by “pesticides and nutrients from chemical fertilizers” (last I heard, sewage injection wells were to blame; Correx: there is no documented cause ); “Oahu has already developed all their prime ag land (well, except for the acreage that's growing more food than anywhere in the state); the Important Ag Land designation can be “changed with the stroke of a pen” (no, a two-thirds vote is required.)

Then there was that big whopper, where Douglas lied to HPR on Monday and claimed they weren't targeting the HC&S land, which he said is "dead and lifeless" — though somehow growing cane — and will require several years of remediation. No word on who is going to pay for that.

I'm sure there were more fibs, but I have to admit I kind of zoned out while listening when I Googled Bruce Douglas and learned he's a big chem trail activist, which may be how he and Pang got together.

My ears pricked, though, when I heard Pang say the Maui activists are different than A&B because “we're transparent.”

Oh, so that explains the email thread I saw on the activists' political strategy to end A&B's Maui water rights, where Sandra Ann Kauionalani Pratt says:

“We don't want to tell the community too much or we will confuse them.”

Yes, God forbid people should actually start thinking for themselves. And if they ask any questions, borrow a move from the awesomely transparent anti-GMO movement and attack, ostracize and silence them immediately. 


Anonymous said...

Thank you for this revealing post, Ms. Just-the-Facts-Joan!

How can people fall for all these schemers and scammers? Hawaii seems to have far more than its share.

Anonymous said...


HONOLULU – The Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) is releasing Part 1 of a Sanitary Survey of Waiopili Ditch at Mahaulepu on Kauai. The study was conducted in response to concerns raised by the Surfrider Kauai Chapter about high enterococci bacteria levels in Waiopili Ditch, and their request to have the Ditch posted with warning signs.
“The Department of Health has investigated the high bacteria level in Waiopili Stream to see if it is caused by sewage, and our survey found no human sources,” said Keith Kawaoka, DOH deputy director of Environmental Health. “The high bacteria appear to be from animal sources and soil, enhanced by the natural canopy of trees that prevent sunlight from killing bacteria in the ditch. These sources present a considerably lower health risk than human sewage contamination.”
The sanitary survey was conducted in Mahaulepu Valley on Kauai – the site of a proposed dairy farm. The survey also focused on water quality in the man-made irrigation ditch, sometimes referred to as Waiopili Stream, in Mahaulepu Valley. The survey results showed high levels of enterococci bacterial, most likely from “background natural sources” such as sediment, feral and domesticated animals, decaying organic matter, birds, insects, vegetation and soil, and a canopy over Waiopili Ditch, but there was no indication of the more serious human fecal contamination.
The sanitary survey looked at the history of the area, geology, hydrology (how quickly water seeps through the ground), past and present land use and farming practices, feral and domestic animals, sewer systems, and cultural practices in the Mahaulepu watershed. The survey also looked at adjacent watershed activities that may be responsible for the high enterococci levels. In the adjacent Waikomo Watershed, better known as Poipu/Koloa Watershed, the study identified a large number of cesspools and injections wells, a Karst topography/lava tube system that may connect to Makauwahi Sinkhole/Cave next to Waiopili Ditch, and a sludge disposal practice that was used to grow forage.
Kawaoka added, “Based on what was discovered with part one of the survey, we have turned our attention to the more serious issue of human fecal contamination that may exist in the Poipu-Koloa watershed.”
The department has determined a need to look into the impacts of the large number of cesspools and injection wells identified by the survey in the Poipu-Koloa watershed. The department conducted additional tests with the U.S. Geological Survey to review wastewater compound, nutrients source tracking, and pharmaceuticals in the Poipu/Koloa and Mahaulepu Watersheds to confirm that human fecal contamination was not the cause of the high enterococci levels. At the recommendation of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 9, the department is reviewing a contract with UC Berkeley Laboratories to conduct high tech molecular testing using their PhyloChip technology to better understand the enterococci levels present in the area.

The Sanitary Survey of Waiopili Ditch at Mahaulepu on Kauai is available at

Anonymous said...

Okay, you lost me here. Are you really criticizing the Maui people for trying to find an alternative to "gentleman farms" and development over ag land?

Are you pro-gentleman farms on Maui but against them on Kauai?

Anonymous said...

It would help immensely if the Maui folks advocating eminent domain over HC&S lands -- at a cost they want taxpayers to bear -- had a real business plan. That is to say, competent, proven farmers with working capital and established, receptive markets. But there's little evidence that they do. As Richard Ha, an accomplished farmer on the Big Island, often reminds folks, "if the farmer can make money, the farmer will farm." Yes, farming is a for-profit business. When it is not a for-profit business, the results are usually disastrous, or induce famines: Soviet collectives displacing traditional kulaks in Russia and Ukraine, or the mass starvation that ensued when the Khmer Rouge expelled millions of Cambodians to the countryside. Trustafarian-style Bolshevism is a highly dubious project. The challenge for A&B, having declared some 27,000 acres "important ag lands," is to find commercial farmers with working capital to farm those IAL lands. Utterly wishful thinkers need not apply, and certainly not at the taxpayer's expense.

Anonymous said...

makes you want to carry a gun. Too many crazies out there.

Anonymous said...

Bring back the Monarchy. The King would deal with the protesters in the appropriate fashion.

Anonymous said...

The plan is to grow pot. Increasing the number visitors and eventual "settlers". The tax on pot should be enough to off set the cost of the land restoration.

Say goodbye to Hawaii independence!

Anonymous said...

Violence is the only option for the uneducated or factually incorrect. When you can not prove your point or even "get it across" you resort to violence out of frustration and cognitive dissonance.

There is a compromise to be found in Science vs. Culture at Mauna Kea. Violence is not it.

Anonymous said...

FYI Joan, there hasn't been a documented cause for the sea turtle tumors. The Maui injection wells have their share of problems, but the sick turtles aren't one of them. It's not pesticides either.

Joan Conrow said...

Thanks. I did a little more research and I stand corrected and have corrected the post.

Anonymous said...

When the people with money create their own science and alter the science of others with threats and intimidation from lawyers, what should be done?

Anonymous said...

Create their own science? Like the universe?

Anonymous said...

Like elsewhere in the state where plantations have closed, the majority of the land will be converted to pasture. What happens to the water systems that irritated that land is the big question.

Anonymous said...

You can't alter science. You/we can, and often do, misinterpret it; but never alter it.

Anonymous said...

This is one of the many reasons you have a strong and loyal are willing to listen and learn.

Anonymous said...

yet again yet another local Hawaiian bnr here vilified. What gives Joan on one hand it seems your journal is slanted against snowbirds and part time residents such as yourself and then anytime a local a Hawaiian or a kamaaina bnr ( born and raised) any racial make up protests anything you rag on them. So which is it? whatever happened at Mauna Kea was horrific and was not done by a local so why drag Pratts name in the mud? I just don't get it sometimes i really enjoy your writing but when someone who isn't a full-time resident consistently picks on people from here especially kanaka and anyone who supports them especially if they are fighting big corporations you pile it on! Why are you so inconsistent with your witting? It's confusing Mahalo for reading this comment.

Anonymous said...

Like elsewhere in the state where plantations have closed, the majority of the land will be converted to pasture. What happens to the water systems that irritated that land is the big question.

March 31, 2016 at 7:59 AM

L ove that Freudian slip "irritated".

Joan Conrow said...

2:14 --Part-time resident? Snowbirds? Vilifying Hawaiians? Picking on kanaka? WTF? Yes, you're confused alright, but don't blame it on me. My writing is very consistent. I call out fools, liars, fear-mongerers and suckers regardless of race, religion or locale. But guess sometimes it just hits a bit too close to home for your comfort level.

Manuahi said...

3:10 - development of AIL will never happen. Period. So forget that.

Anonymous said...

OMG. Pigs in Poipu. The hotels had better arm the doormen, outfit Bridget Hammerquist in a cheerleader outfit, borrow some hunting dogs and send the lot of them to Waiopili on a Grand Hyatt Pigsticking Poipu Protection Hunt. Maybe Kauai Visitor Bureau will chip in some TAT kala to help them out and add it to the area visitor festival roster.