Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Musings: Unpleasant Realities

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard has again shown herself to be a master at self-promotion, positioning herself prominently in the Standing Rock conflict at a time when she can make the most of the media attention.

Shoots, she even managed to get her picture in — though not on the cover of — Rolling Stone, where she holds forth on the "meaning" of the Army Corps of Engineers decision to conduct an EIS on alternative routes for the contested pipeline.

Nothing like eclipsing the natives, who surely they know more about the issue than she, for her own political gain. Heck, she was only there for a weekend. Just long enough to make a video for her Facebook page, give interviews and capitalize on the end to the standoff.

Tulsi opines:

Others are talking about where is the next fight to protect our water. There's a situation in Utah. There's a situation in New Mexico. There are people I met from Flint, Michigan who would like to see this same attention and resolve brought to resolve their situation there. You know, there's not a lack of things to do, unfortunately. 

Meanwhile, what has Tulsi done to address the very real and serious water conflicts in her home state of Hawaii? Oh, that's right. There's no national media spotlight for her in the Islands. Only the fawning coverage of Civil Beat, which followed her to North Dakota.

So it grated a bit to hear Tulsi opine:

Unless we protect our water there is no economy.

Which leads me to Waikiki, where I happen to be at this moment, sitting on a balcony on the 22nd floor of the Sheraton, which is perched on the very edge of the Pacific.
Bet they're hoping global warming is a hoax.

I'm attending meetings in Waikiki, where one gets hit in the face with the reality of tourism as the economic driver in Hawaii. And also tourism as the primary consumer of natural resources in the Islands.

It's absolutely boggling to think of the water that is consumed by these rows of 1,000+-room hotels, on an island that also supports the bulk of the state's population. 

Yet folks just keep on pretending the aquifer is gonna last forever and the seas are never gonna rise and we're gonna grow all our own food — organically, of course — and everybody's gonna live happily ever after.

It's all G! Have another mai tai! No worries!

Returning to the topic of media-hungry, opportunistic politicians — except in this case, we're talking about a failed politician — Gary Hooser is trying to relive his doubtful glory days with another trip to Switzerland this week:
I'm actually starting to feel sorry for Gary. Talk about pathetic. Does he truly believe that crashing the Syngenta shareholder's meeting had any impact at all, save for adding to the planet's carbon load? And does anyone, anywhere (except maybe Basel) give a shit what a few people in Basel think about what Syngenta is doing on Kauai? Especially since they don't know WTF they're talking about, if Hooser is their source of info.

It's almost as twisted as the fairy tale that the Brower family— Andrea, Rob and Laurel Brier — presented in The Garden Island today with their portrayal of St. Tim:

For exposing misconduct, challenging powerful interests, and supporting Bill 2491’s intent to protect residents from the harmful effects of pesticides, Tim was cruelly attacked in a well-funded smear campaign. False, callous ads were sent anonymously to island households from the mainland. Nobody has been held accountable, and hateful personal attacks continue even after his death in opinion pieces and blogs. Despite suffering personally, Tim always stood his ground for justice.

Oh, yes. When all else fails, play the victim card. Tim did some good things for Kauai, and he's been lauded for those accomplishments. But to claim that he was taken down because he dared to cross powerful interests — and to imply that the seed industry was behind it — is clearly revisionist history at its finest.

He lost re-election for the same reason as Gary: voters were tired of his schtick. I don't want to speak ill of the dead, but I'm also not going to stand by and let people make shit up to further their own political agendas.

Returning to water issues, I was walking the beach behind Lydgate the other day. Or rather, I was trying to. Like so many beaches in Hawaii, that one is getting increasingly narrow, due to a combination of erosion and encroachment by shoreline vegetation. It's the same story at Anahola, Anini, Haena, etc.

Though it wasn't high tide, or big surf, the beach was impassable in many places.
So I found myself returning along Ke Ala Hele Makalae — the coastal path.

I wasn't crazy about the path when it was first introduced. It seemed to me another move toward gentrification, another amenity intended to cater to tourists.

But I was wrong. It's not only proven to be popular among locals, it's becoming the only way to access the coastline in places where the beaches are shrinking. Which is a good thing.

Still, it's kind of sad, too. Because walking along a concrete path just isn't the same as feeling sand beneath bare feet.

And while the fight to move the path off Wailua Beach, and onto the highway fronting Coco Palms, was distorted by false claims that it would disturb burials in the sand, it was wise to take it off the beach.
Because it's shrinking, too. Which means it wouldn't have been long before that section of the path was consumed by the sea.

So what's going to happen to tourism if Hawaii can't sell its beaches? And what's going to happen to Hawaii if it's squandered all its resources on tourism?


Anonymous said...

Do us all a favor Joan, jump from the balcony.

Joan Conrow said...

How about if you just stop reading my blog if you can't handle it?

Anonymous said...

Wish i could go to Standing Rock to let them know that i too, stand with them. Tulsi stands with them and i am so glad that she was able and willing to go there. What is in our hearts should not be determined by others with their judgemental minds.

Anonymous said...

7:53 you do us a favor and jump on a plane back home to the mainland and stay there. Joan is awesome, Hooser and Bynum are Loosers. Felicia and Yukimura are irritating Hippies.

Anonymous said...

Great post Joan.

The problem is most cannot ponder, consider or think about the future either because they are too ignorant, too hungry (financially speaking), or too self absorbed.

Keep up the good fight.

Anonymous said...

Tusi! Fake! For her own self. I've said it before on your blog. she rode the reputation of Mr. Inouye. Now, it's all about her.

Show us the money! Bring home the money for our state! and next, she want's to move her job to another WDC seat. Shit, just like Case, never satisfied, going for the BBD!

This time, I'm so proud to be in the minority. I don't care. I see what I see about Tusi and it isn't anything for Hawaii! Tomorrow! Take picture with the Vet's, say a few words! all for personal promotion.

Now a 2 topic candidate. War and always safe environment. How about working for Hawaii's people, show us the actions (money) and not the fake (hot air) actions.

Have a Great Week Hawaii!

Anonymous said...

@ 7:53 AM,
Many of us out here know that if Joan were to jump, there'd be no problem....she'd fly.

That's how we feel about her. And with good reason.
And there are many of us.

Anonymous said...

"7:53 you do us a favor and jump on a plane back home to the mainland and stay there. Joan is awesome,"

Funny how you allow other people to be called out as mainlanders but steadfastly pretend you are "local." Such a phony!

And stop attacking real heroes like Tulsi Gabbard. That's the future President of the United Stated you're bashing.

And "Vegetation encroaching the beach" on the east side? Sooner or later you are going to have to realize that the "pristine sandy beaches" you wrote about it your travel brochures look a lot different on natural beaches. I guess you're going to blame the Brosnans for that too.

Anonymous said...

You do realize that the deadline for protesters to leave was 12/5 and were going to be forcefully removed. 2000 vets decided to show up before it happened and stand between the police and protesters. Tulsi was one of the 2000 vets. That's why she was there.

Joan Conrow said...

@10:11. I've never pretended to be local, but sorry to hear you're so sensitive about your own status. And if you actually think the coastal vegetation along the eastside is all natural, you really need to educate yourself.

@10:21 There was never any plan to forcibly remove protesters by Dec 5. In fact, law enforcement repeatedly said that wasn't going to happen.

Anonymous said...

Wailua Beach, like all beaches, erodes and accretes. It was only a few years ago that it was so narrow that the ironwoods next to the highway were falling over due to the erosion. Then the beach came back. Eventually climate change will amplify the cycle and the existing path and the highway will become compromised. Hope there's a backup plan for then but I doubt it.

Anonymous said...

@10:11. hero was yesterday. that we can remember. (that was action, whether she truly kicked ass or not, only she knows.) Today! Representative, so Represent Hawaii, show us the money. Do your freaking job and bring back Hawaii's share of money (not hot air action).

Tomorrow, president, maybe. For today! Represent! today, tomorrow she don't need to represent me, but she will need to represent Hawaii. and for now, she's representing HERSELF! Freaking Elected (by the people) official! you all wasted your vote. Hahahahaha! I wasted mine in protest. And I feel freaking great about it.

Anonymous said...

Tulsi certainly seems to be aiming for a much higher office!

Anonymous said...

Joan - we are trying to decide who is uglier and the least desirable, you or Joni. You win! Hands down! We have come to the conclusion that is why you are so angry is that you are so ugly. The 2491 Babes, Ashley and her entire CFS staff, Tulsi, they are all much nicer and far mor attractive than you are. This explains it!

Joan Conrow said...

I agree that Joni is better looking, but is that what this is all about? Who is prettiest? I guess that's what matters to a movement led by narcissists.

Anonymous said...

To 1:49 pm,

How pathetic are you to be so mean-spirited, immature, and irrelevant.
So typical of your movement.

Please grow up soon.

Anonymous said...

Child Please! Go to your corner and take a timeout.

Unknown said...

It's all fine and good to give more exposure to the finer elements of Tim Bynum's history. I'm all for that! But this article referenced is instead, a cynical effort to embed a whitewashing of a campaign for 2491 that was dishonest, based on emotional partisanship and divided the community in a way that could have, and should have, been avoided. It's written by some of the very people responsible.

Andrea Brower was completely radicalized at the University of California, Berkeley and brought divisive, radical Berkeley style activist tactics back to Kauai and applied them in an initial 2491 leadership position. For this, she did her former community a huge disservice!

Now the dishonesty continues with sly innuendo implying Mainland support. Let's focus instead on the millions from an antiGMO trust fund in Minnesota that financed the 2491 effort by Hawaii Seed and the Mainland activist groups that directed it and are STILL HERE, still dividing us, and still raising funds for their off Kauai activities!

Unknown said...

@ 4:49 There is no hope for @1:49 growing up. The anti-gmo movement is fueled by hate and that is why the movement is failing. Mainland farmers are rejecting organic farming in droves as they are put off by the movement's hate and lies.

Organic grain production:
Who is meeting the demand? Time to find a niche?

Wyatt Muse, merchandiser for Clarkson Grain Co., says organic poultry producers are the leading driver behind organic feed needs, and today they rely on imports for grain.

Other countries have recognized and met that demand faster than the U.S., says Peter Golbitz, with Agromeris, a consulting firm that advises companies in food processing, marketing and agribusiness. In 2015, Greece and Bulgaria entered the organic corn market, and Brazil and Spain jumped into the organic soybean market.

"The majority of organic soybean imports come from India, Ukraine, Argentina, China and Canada. Organic corn comes primarily from Romania, Turkey, Argentina, Canada and India.

Back in the United States, USDA reports indicate few farmers making the move to organic production. Organic transitional acres increased from 122,175 in 2014 to 150,880 in 2015.

To meet current organic feed demands, Golbitz says the U.S. needs 500,000 more organic acres, and counting."

In addition, all the movement's changes to organic standards board rules leave farmers in a sea of doubt to where they actually stand. That is causing organic farmers to transition back to conventional farming. Finally, few foodies actually want to undertake the task of starting their own organic farm. Put down Joni all you like; however, her family's farm is out growing "Out Grow Monsanto Maui" by leaps and bounds (or pounds). Wasn't BAB involved with OGMM? There are those who talk about changing the way things are done and there are those who lead by example. The antis are pissed because Joni's example is winning the conversation among farmers and we're the ones who ultimately feed the world. (Joan helps too, and she gets her fair share of hate because of the advocacy.)

Please don't let the hate bring you down Joni and Joan: farmers have your back completely. (Except Dustin Barca: that guy is only about himself.)

Anonymous said...

Joan- You have pulled the last straw, Rob Brower's last name is Brower...not Brier. Manhood gets eked away easily, but puhlease don't let the last vestige of manliness be plucked so easily away. He may have got his big dough from the wifee, but a man's name is still his name.
Many of us hold Tim's memory with fondness. But he blemished his few good works by harnessing himself to the Fistee force. Da Hoos and Tim lied together, shrieked together and did their best to divide Kauai together. May he rest in peace. A peace he never worked towards on Kauai.
To set the record straight.......on the Kapaa Bike Path. Tweren't Tim who was the force behind this. From the first days when LP was digging their Haul Cane Road up..it was a few Kapaa Business Gals 'n Guys that went to then Councilman Ron Kouchi, Mary Thronas, Mayor Kusaka and Caesar Porugal. Mary, Caesar and Ron were for it. At that time Mayor Kusaka was agin it.
Later after the Kealia Mauka/Makai drumroll came out. Mayor Kusaka was for it..and essentially is was her good maneuvering that this came to be. Mayor Baptiste picked up the baton and carried. Tim was no part of the origin or concept, except for the part by his splintering old weird wooden kid's play-pen (the pen that Rob Brower/Brier built)
But Ms Joan, that ol' bike path goes along portions of a beach that has been eroding for over 100 years. Not a smidgeon of global warming or rising seas to be felt or seen.
Global warming is a figment of chicken littles.

The Bike Path may be the longest stretch of public access in the State. And thank the Good God Above Us that the likes of hard bike-riding lady and Amy Awtry saw the opportunity for a the Bike Path via the exit of LP. These are the 2 gals that saw the potential of the the old haul cane road.......Tim had zippo to do with it.
So sayeth---a Vegetarian walking by the Vegetation
On another note- Joan you are a good looking lady. Haole or otherwise.

Anonymous said...

I got to say there are always hot chicks in health food stores buying organic food. Never seen one in a food mart filling up with GMO crap.

Joan Conrow said...

I see activist Andre Perez also called Tulsi on her BS, though CB didn't report on it until after it had issued its fawning coverage:


Anonymous said...

Is Andre Perez someone you like and admire Joan? Is he one of the good guys?

Anonymous said...

Yeah but behind that is the real facts: (1) most are from the mainland (2) EBT (tax payers) pay for their food (3) Quest (tax payers) pay for their crazy drugs and STD's (4) you can look good with all that time dolling yourself up when they don't have jobs or are paid for by nonprofits agendas.

Know what I'm saying Vern?

Anonymous said...

Keep up the great work Joan. Freedom of speech rings loud and clear. Some "readers" are having a bad day. Jump yet. Must be an asshole and they still read you loud and clear. We need informative reading material. Enjoy the comments. HaHaHa.

Anonymous said...

So it doesn't matter that tulsi was there with 2000 other vets?

Anonymous said...

Gabbard is without a doubt the most self serving, self absorbed and least constituent oriented representative in my political memory which goes back to when Jack burns was the Hawaii Delegate to Congress.She ranks high in theatricality and opportunism and low on representing the district, and in an informed electorate would never occupy a seat Burns held.

Anonymous said...

about tulsi

yep, she's a headline grabber and a self server. said so from day one. To hell with the democrats who voted her in, and that friends, are the people of Hawaii.

Anonymous said...

I'm still waiting for Ehren Watada to run for office. Hawaii being a democratic and anti war state would be a great move for the former Army 1st LT finance major from Honolulu.

Anonymous said...

Wailua sand has gone in and out my entire life. I panic every time, and then it grows bigger than ever. Doesn't mean it always will. But that is way it goes.

Anonymous said...

Wailua Beach Erosion
SUBHEAD: Wailua Beach is backed against a new highway and eroding quickly. Should we jam in a bike path?

By James Alalem & Ray Catania on 13 June 2012 in TGI -

Anonymous said...

Tulsi must be anti GMO or own a vacation rental to be so popular on this blog.

Anonymous said...

During the past 40 years there have only been a few things that have been achieved that are good for the people.
1- Turning Kauai Electric into KIUC (non-government)
2- Bike Path, a forever public ribbon on the beach (private sector idea and then Government involvement)
3- Getting Da Hoos out of office (non-government). Now all we have to do is get Mason and JoAnn out.
4- The Humane Society building (private sector idea. One man and one woman. Government assist.)
The worst things
1- The Kekaha Dump (Government made- AKA Mt Yukimura)
2- The Bus (Government made, cost to the public 50 million and counting)
3- Every Bike Path (Government made, cost to the public millions. Statistics show that for every mile ridden by a bike on a bike path equals 1 million per rider. The Puhi Bikepath has had a total of 7 bikes on it during the past year). Cost to the Public in frustration, priceless.

50 years of higher taxes, endless laws, rules and regulations. More government, less freedom and every day our County Departments make decisions that take the zest out of life and try to kill the human spirit to grow and thrive.
We are an island ---for the government, of the government and by the government.
No wait, actually the government workers are thriving. Getting more power and bigger pay every day.
Kauai County motto "You earn it, we will take it".
Kauai's people are the most helpful, kindest and caring citizens on the planet. How did we allow ourselves to be eaten up by Big Brother?
“Doublethink means the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one's mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them.” Council Planning Dep't motto
“Nothing was your own except the few cubic centimetres inside your skull. ” JoAnn's goal for the island
“Power is not a means; it is an end.” Planning Department
"The average Kauai family makes over $100,000 per year" Mason Chock - while explaining his support for higher Excise Tax.
“I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you.” Kauai citizen perception of the County

Anonymous said...

During the past 40 years there have only been a few things that have been achieved that are good for the people.
1- Turning Kauai Electric into KIUC (non-government)
2- Bike Path, a forever public ribbon on the beach (private sector idea and then Government involvement)
3- Getting Da Hoos out of office (non-government). Now all we have to do is get Mason and JoAnn out.
4- The Humane Society building (private sector idea. One man and one woman. Government assist.)

WTF over?

(1) KIUC is a rip off nepotism defrauding scheme. Higest rates in the nation and has the ability to be 100% renewable but won't because the nepotism GREED is as strong as the longshoreman monopoly and or like Hawaiian Airlines greedy monopoly.

(2) The multimodal path (bike path) is a 150 million dollar luxury wasted get rich quick scheme. Yes a 150 million dollars when that could have been used for alternate routes and also emergency bypasses. Now we have to wait 4-5 hours for the incompetents to milk the overtime pay on any and every accident scene.

(3) Gary Hooser was a good balance from the good old and gals plantation families sandlot kingdom. When he tried to play hero with 2491, he lost the support of many. He should have followed the state and federal processes to gather evidence to support such as bill. It would have taken him and his followers a few years but it would have a valid argument unlike shooting, aiming and then loading.

(4) That Kauai humane society animal killer ruined the definition of its name and lost all of its big donors and rightfully so.

The Mayor and the greedy unions have destroyed any trust, faith and confidence in county governance on Kauai and the state of Hawaii likewise with its representatives.

Joan Conrow said...

@10:58. Though your comment is misinformed in any ways, I'll just focus on #4. The Humane Society has been steadily reducing the euthanasia rates of animals over the years, and it has not lost all its big donors. Don't blame KHS for having to clean up the problem caused by irresponsible animal owners, landlords unwilling to let their tenants have pets, a long time feral cat problem and ignorant zealots who believe a no-kill facility can effectively deal with a massive animal population on a small island. It's more humane to euthanize an unwanted, unsocialized dog or sickly feral cat than let it languish in a kennel, let it get run over on the road or dump it in an unmanaged feral colony.

Anonymous said...

The Director of the KHS did run off their big donors and many good, caring employees. Just because she is on "Joan Conrow's Friends List" doesn't mean she didn't do irreparable damage to the reputation of the KHS.

Anonymous said...

Military females or females in genwral are opportunists. They know how to use their feminism and looks to get want they want, where they want and who they want. They surely know what's the most powerful thing to use in the military and Gen (retired) Paterus fell for that tramp trap.

It happens in the military on a daily basis. So don't hate if females know the game and knows how to play the game.

But in some cases as in:

The Kobe Bryant and Derek Rose case, you see those females motives were what gave bad names to the real victims of sexual assault cases.

Sarah Palin tried to do the same but she's too airheaded to actually accomplish what Tulsi is doing.

Joan Conrow said...

@11:08. I only met the former director a month ago. She didn't run off any donors or good employees. She was the victim of an orchestrated attack on her by the feral cat people. They are the ones who damaged the rep of KHS with their lies and unjust accusations.

Anonymous said...

@ 12:50 p.m. thank you for confirming the accusation. Tulsi is strutting to get what she wants. Not what Hawaii wants or needs.


Anonymous said...

Don't ask about how Ahuna got the Job as a county of Kauai planner but with county having no standards for employment, it shouldn't surprise anyone.

Anonymous said...

Ahuna is not a planner she's a volunteer on the commission but I'm not surprised that the haters here don't know their facts. She's alright, it's her husband Dan the jock oha rep that's the dummy.

Anonymous said...

Silly goose 1:36, planning commissioners are volunteer, there is no job, no pay

Anonymous said...

How you gonna volunteer for something you have no expertise or experience in?

It's another opportunist jockeying for another position.

Anonymous said...

Alright? You mean looks wise but she surely doesn't have any educational background in anything dealing with planning accept for-drum roll please... campaigning against Dan (don't call me Ron) Kouchi.

You people are the joke on Kauai.

This the answer to why Kauai's planning dept and commission is so fucked up!