Sent thru the etherBegin forwarded message:From: Conservative Forum Hawaii <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: December 19, 2011 6:30:01 PM HST
Subject: Plastic Bag Ban : last gasp
Your help is needed. If everyone adds a voice, the impact will be felt. Recent public feed-back has been very much against this law, and momentum is building.
Most councilmen have re-election on their minds, and are sensitive to the people's voices. The next and final council meeting on this is Wed, 21 December.
Please let them know how you feel, immediately, by sending them an email or fax. (Too late for US mail.)
Mr. Pilago is the key swing vote, and he can indeed be influenced for the better. Please do NOT let this drop.
It is just like the “broken window” theory of police work: allowing small crimes to go unpunished, like breaking windows, leads to massive larger crimes becoming common.
Allowing even the small loss of liberties to go unchecked inevitably leads the ratchet to go only one direction towards our loss of even greater liberties.
This has got to stop, and you can and must help. Our position as conservatives is that this bag ban law is another unwarranted micro-management of our lives that should not be the purview of our elected officials.
We also feel all the arguments by the progressive activists pushing this are all wrong, and the net effect would actually be harmful.
- We feel that litter is a behavioral problem, not an item problem. For example, we cannot reduce car accidents by banning just Toyotas.
- Plastic bags will be replaced by paper, which is less environmentally kind than plastic, takes even more landfill room, and actually introduces more carbon into the air than plastic bag production and use.
- Plastic bags do NOT contribute any significant content to the vast mass of sea-borne plastic debris.
- NO scientific studies show plastic bags are a significant harm to wildlife. None. Only a very few, rare, isolated and over-hyped photos contradict this, not any real science.
- Plastic bags will be replaced by paper, or re-usable bags, which are much less useful for the full spectrum that bags are currently used for (transparent, cheap, light, and water-proof)
- Paper bags will be more expensive than plastic, costs that the poorest among us can afford the least.
- Our government should be making life easier and cheaper, not harder and more expensive.
- These sorts of details of daily life are for individuals to decide, NOT the nanny-state government. Personal liberty is again lessened by this ban.
Time to take a stand and STOP this sort of bad government behavior. If not, they will just continue and repeat this again and again. It started with light bulbs and low-flow toilets and shower heads, and many more items. Next up: banning all Styrofoam.Your help is needed ! Councilmen Blas, Smart, Hoffman and Ford are all in favor of the ban.
Councilmen Onishi, Yoshimoto and Ikeda are all against the ban
- Smart, Hoffman and Ford are committed progressives, who WANT to micro-manage everyone's lives, and feel it is the purpose of government to do so.
- Blas has gone against all the conservative principles that he claimed to possess when we evaluated him pre-election, and this is just the latest example. It is clear he was not honest with us about his approach to government, does not care about saving tax payers additional expense (bond issues), nor on personal liberty issues nor on making our lives less costly and easier. Despite the fact that his district (Puna) has the highest poverty rate on the island, he will vote for this ban and so raise the cost of living for all his constituents anyway. He just doesn't care about that.)
- Yagong opposes this bag ban for all the reasons we have listed, but as the company he works for uses bags in their business, he feels voting would be a conflict of interest in this case, and so will not cast a vote.
- Pilago has voted for the ban previously, but may be persuaded by the logic of the arguments against it to change his vote.
I intend to testify on Wednesday. This is my prepared statement.
(1) Ladies and gentlemen, with all due respect. I come before you today to provide a reality check. The fact exists that it is implicit in the Hawaiian culture to be respectful and not say things people don't want to hear. But, sometimes, that fails as a strategy. It does so today, when the government goes off on the wrong track and either politeness or political ideology propels the train off the cliff instead of stopping it.
(2) We all, and it is not a secret, understand that each of you believe you were elected because of your great campaigning abilities and your vision of the future of Hawaii County. Some were elected because they believe their districts are not getting it's fair share of the pie, and you want more pie. That is the nature of politics.
(3) However, there is another open secret in this county. You, and EACH of you, were elected, not for your sterling abilities, of which I do not doubt. You were elected to get rid of the person you replaced because of the pitiful job they did. That is the reality.
(4) Further, this is a County Council, not a jury or a parole board. Your job is to make the lives of the people you serve as easy as possible and grace them with all of the benefits of liberty and the pursuit of happiness you can. Your job is NOT to sit behind closed doors and try to find ways to make life more unpleasant for the citizens. Simply being elected does not mean you automatically gain superior knowledge and become infallible – it merelt means you are less repugnant to the voters than someone else.
(5) As an example: Unless I am badly mistaken, we are gathered here today to consider, among other things, the mandatory removal of plastic grocery – and, presumably, trash bags, eventually, from the citizens of the rainiest city in the United States. Logic dictates that this is one of the places the use of such bags should be mandated. The simple fact is that neither cloth, which absorbs water ans molds, nor paper, which disintegrates in water, nor any other reasonably available substance will allow a person – especially a single mother with children – to shop for a family and get the groceries home in the rain.
I come from a generation in which paper bags were all that was available. The complaint then was that their use destroyed the forests. That is still true. But I also remember the nightmare of trying to get a cart full of groceries, in paper bags, into my mom's car in the rain. The bags broke and we lost a lot of food, not to mention making a huge mess in the parking lot and in my car. Then, when we got home, the bags had melted completely, and it was almost impossible to get the food inside – ESPECIALLY things that were not canned. Cereal, for instance. Pasta. Fresh bread. It was all ruined.
(6) Therefore, ladies and gentlemen, I ask you to think about where you are and what you are proposing. This is not El Paso, Texas. Look outside. Go to the store and buy groceries for your family. Ask for 'paper'. Then try to get it home. This is of the few places in the country where plastic is necessary, and should be mandated – and you want to ban it for impractical and non-sensical ideologies. Then, after a rainy winter, you think you will be re-elected because of brilliant decisions like this one.
(7) In closing, I thank you for your time and leave you with a thought. You have exactly the same power here to repeal the ridiculous actions of the people you replaced as you do to make yet more ridiculous choices which will cause you to be replaced in turn. Please consider repealing laws, not making new ones all the time. There are too many laws and we are not criminals. Until you pass another law. I seem to recall that a law was passed banning smoking in a car containing a minor. Watch the police drop their kids at school. They are smoking in the car. What was accomplished? Almost the entire council was tossed out. Learn when to say 'when'.
A hui hou, kakoa
Thomas C. Burnett
PO Box 2051
Pahoa, HI 96778
On Mon, Dec 19, 2011 at 21:25, Edward Gutteling <email@example.com> wrote: