I awoke this morning to the flashing clock that told me the power had been out. Luckily, power had already been restored. More of life in Kaaawa.
This in from the Hawaii Newspaper Guild:
At noon Friday, union workers at The Honolulu Advertiser will rally in support of 54 co-workers who were notified that they will be laid off.
The rally will take place on the sidewalk in front of The Honolulu Advertiser, 605 Kapiolani Blvd, at the corner of South St.
Superferry watchers might be interested in my Honolulu Weekly column this week, which takes a peek at some of the gifts that exchanged hands at the State Capitol this past year.
On January 14, Gov. Linda Lingle and House Speaker Calvin Say each received replicas of the first Hawai’i Superferry vessel from John F. Lehman, the company’s chairman and its largest investor. The model ships, valued at $500 by Lingle and $200 by Say, were presented less than three months after Lingle called the Legislature back into an extraordinary special session that swept aside a Supreme Court decision in order to allow Hawai’i Superferry to begin interisland service.
Senate President Colleen Hanabusa was given a framed photo of the Superferry, valued at $50, back in November, just a week after the bill had been signed into law.
The State Ethics Code (Chapter 84 Hawai’i Revised Statutes) prohibits legislators or other state employees from soliciting, accepting or receiving any gift “under circumstances in which it can reasonably be inferred that the gift is intended to influence the legislator or employee in the performance” of their official duties “or is intended as a reward for any official action” on their part.
The law also requires public disclosure of any gifts from a single source, which, singly or in aggregate, are worth more than $200.
The recipients all properly reported the Superferry’s gifts to the ethics commission. But were they “intended as a reward” for successful passage of the bill that launched the ferry into service, and therefore prohibited?
Unfortunately, that ended up being a largely rhetorical question. Gifts are an area that still give the State Ethics Commission a headache, and many issues remain unresolved.
Last week’s Weekly column expanded my assessment of the Supreme Court’s recent campaign spending case on Hawaii’s new campaign spending law which, incidentally, became law last week without the governor’s signature.
Have you noticed that John McCain’s camaign themes include the catchy claim, “I know how to win wars.”
I wonder where he was supposed to learn that and what evidence there might be to support the claim?
Like Bush, McCain brags about being a poor student, making his “I was fifth from the bottom in my class” a routine part of his folksy pitch.
In any case, I don’t think it’s unfair to say that McCain’s military record just doesn’t seem to indicate that he was in any position to have proved his “I know how to win wars” claim.
News from Denver is that, sure enough, the transit stop closest to the Pepsi Center, where the Democratic National Convention will be held, is going to be closed during convention week. Delegates and others will have to walk from the next stop if they use transit, although there will be regular buses running between the delegate hotels and the Pepsi Center that should bypass this hangup.
This is Mr. Romeo surveying his domain. We notice that the cats are spending more time on the floor during this hot weather, taking advantage of the old “hot air rises” observaton.
In any case, click on Romeo’s photo for more Friday Felines.