About The Kaʻū Calendar

Ka`u, Hawai`i, United States
A locally owned and run community newspaper (www.kaucalendar.com) distributed in print to all Ka`u District residents of Ocean View, Na`alehu, Pahala, Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park, Volcano Village and Miloli`i on the Big Island of Hawai`i. This blog is where you can catch up on what's happening daily with our news briefs. This blog is provided by The Ka`u Calendar Newspaper (kaucalendar.com), Pahala Plantation Cottages (pahalaplantationcottages.com), Local Productions, Inc. and the Edmund C. Olson Trust.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Ka`u News Briefs Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Derelict fishing nets and lines, collected from the Ka`u Coast, were packed into a 40-foot container on 
Saturday, to be shipped by Matson at no cost to Honolulu to be burned to make electricity. Nohea Ka`awa
winches the nets into a Hawai`i Wildlife Fund truck. See story below. Hawai`i Wildlife Fund photo
REP. TULSI GABBARD'S REQUEST FOR EVIDENCE is "an entirely reasonable position," writes Salon magazine writer Danielle Ryan — "but apparently, it’s a big problem for some Democrats." Gabbard has called for investigating and presenting evidence on the details of both the chemical weapons attack that killed people in Syria and the response of the U.S. firing missiles into Syria.
     In a Salon article on Tuesday, Ryan pointed to an attack on Gabbard by Neera Tanden, head of the Center for American Progress and former Hillary Clinton adviser. Tamden "tweeted a link to Gabbard’s appearance on CNN with Wolf Blitzer last week and essentially called out the congresswoman’s constituents for keeping her in office." Tanden tweeted, "People of Hawai`i's 2nd district - was it not enough for you that your rep met with a murderous dictator? Will this move you?" Tanden was referring to Gabbard's trip in January to meet with Syrian President Basjar Al-Assad, which Gabbard called information gathering and a peace mission. Former Democratic National Committee Chair Howard Dean tweeted that  Gabbard is a disgrace and "should not be in Congress."
     Ryan wrote in Salon that "Tulsi Gabbard is an Iraq war veteran. She put her life on the line for her country. Democrats like Howard Dean and Neera Tanden smearing her name for the crime of skepticism is the real disgrace....So what is Gabbard's high crime? Simply wanting solid evidence before getting tangled up in a new war."
     The Salon writer referred to Gabbard, warning a year ago that the U.S. working to overthrow Assad was strengthening the position of Islamic extremists. Ryan quoted Gabbard saying that extremists "will walk in and take over all of the country of Syria if Assad's government falls." Gabbard contended that U.S. arms were falling into the hands of these enemies like Al Qaueda and Al Nursa.
     The writer pointed out that "since last week's missile attack, the Hawai`i congresswoman has been tweeting using the hashtag #ResistTrumpsWar - a clear dig at Democrats who claimed to be part of the anti_Trump 'Resistance,' but who are now fully supportive of what she calls his 'reckless and short-sighted' airstrikes."
     When questioning both the air strikes and chemical weapons strikes and wanting evidence, writes Ryan, the problem is with the framing of the Syrian problem. It "gives people two options: Be patriotic and believe U.S. intelligence officials unquestioningly or side with Assad and the Russians," the Salon writer concluded.
     Gabbard tweeted on Tuesday, "We need to learn from Iraq and Libya - wars that were propagated as 'humanitarian' but actually increased human suffering many times over." She tweeted, "No leader -- of either party, for/against U.S. intervention -- should let POTUS escalate another regime change war without congressional approval," and, "Some of my friends never came home from Iraq war; we have the duty not to allow lies/speculation to drag us into regime change war again."

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Matson donated a container and the shipping for nets and line
from the Ka`u coast to be shipped to O`ahu to a power plant.
J.D.Services, LLC donated a tractor and operator.
Hawai`i Wildlife Fund Photo 
FIFTEEN THOUSAND POUNDS OF DERELICT FISHING NETS and bundles of line - most of it hauled off the Ka`u Coast - were loaded into a 40-foot Matson shipping container last Saturday, April 8. Hawai'i Wildlife Fund and eight volunteers filled the container. It was the tenth since 2005.  
     Hawai`i Wildlife Fund saves nets it collects from marine debris cleanup events along the shoreline for inclusion in NOAA's "nets to energy" partnership. Hawai'i was the first in the country to create this program, converting marine debris to electricity rather than tossing it into a landfill. Now, many ports around the mainland U.S. have similar strategies for this "fishing for energy" framework. 
     Megan Lamson, Hawai`i Wildlife Fund Program Director for Hawai`i Island, said, "This work would not be possible without the hundreds of volunteers who help Hawai`i Wildlife Fund with these ocean debris removal efforts every year. In particular, this net loading was made possible due to the generous donation by JD Services, LLC of a tractor and operator for the day, and the County of Hawai`i for allowing us to store these nets at the Nā‘āhelu transfer station in between container loads."
     Matson Navigation provides the 40-foot container and free shipping of the marine debris from Neighbor Islands to O'ahu where Schnitzer Steel, a metal recycling company, cuts the nets into smaller pieces before they are delivered to the Covanta H-power Plant in Kapolei. There, they are burned and converted to electricity for the City and County of Honolulu.
      The vast majority of nets shipped last weekend were pulled off the remote and rocky Ka'ū coastline. Also shipped were six large net bundles, weighing 1,200 lbs., pulled out of the ocean by boaters in West Hawai'i and dropped off at Honokōhau Harbor earlier in 2017.
Megan Lamson operates the winch to
putt nets into the truck to ship them
to an electrical plant.
Hawai`i Wildlife Fund Photo
        Lamson said that the Hawai`i Wildlife Fund is "committed to removing marine debris from along our shorelines and working with local residents, businesses and government representatives to reduce the amount of plastic that finds its way into the ocean. Plastic pollution is a serious problem that now impacts most life forms that live in the ocean or use the ocean as a food source. But, it's a problem with an obvious solution. We must start reducing our usage of plastics, especially single-use plastics in order to protect the health of the ocean, and the health of the wildlife and people who depend on the ocean - all of us!"

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Hei Demonstration, Wed, April 12, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m., Kīlauea Visitor Center lānai in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. No‘el Tagab-Cruz teaches protocol and meaning behind traditional Hawaiian string figures that are used with oli (chants) to tell stories and connect with elements around us. Free; park entrance fees apply. 

Red Cross Volunteer meeting, Thu, April 13, 7 p.m., HOVE Road Maintenance Corp. office. For volunteers and those interested in becoming volunteers. Hannah Uribes, 929-9953 

Recycling at Nā‘ālehu School, Sat, April 15, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m., Nā‘ālehu School Gym. Redeem your HI-5 sorted by type; receive 5 cents per container and additional 20 cents per pound on all aluminum. Atlas Recycling donates 20 cents per pound on all aluminum redeemed to the school. 939-2413, ext. 230.
Realms of Kahuku
Kahuku Unit of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park offers a two-mile, two-
hour guided hike on Saturday. NPS Photo

Realms and Divisions of Kahuku on Sat, April 15 from 9:30a.m. to11:30 a.m., is a moderately-difficult two-mile, two-hour guided hike on Kahuku Unit's newest trail, Pu'u Kahuku. Experience the sense of place that evolves through the inter-relationship of nature and culture. Explore the realms and divisions of the traditional Hawaiian classification system at Kahuku. Enter the Kahuku unit of Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park on the mauka (uphill) side of Highway 11 near mile marker 70.5, and meet near the parking area. Sturdy footwear, water, rain gear, sun protection, and a snack are recommended.

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Ka`u News Briefs Monday, April 10, 2017

Green Sand Beach is advertised by several helicopter tour companies. Photo by Peter Anderson
TOUR HELICOPTER & LIGHT PLANE FLIGHTS over special places like Green Sand Beach, with flight paths over homes, are expected to come up at congressional Town Hall meetings on Hawai`i Island this and next week. Hawai`i Coalition Malama Pono has issued a statement saying the group made progress recently in a meeting with members of Congress, the National Park Service, Hawai`i County Civil Defence and the FAA. According to the organization, the government officials were told "loud and clear: Hawai`i residents want relief from helicopter tour noise."
     While much of the concern is coming from home owners, particularly in Mountain View and Kea`au, people visiting remote Ka`u places are also occasionally under the flight paths of tour helicopters. Helicopter companies are advertising overflights of beaches found in Ka`u - particularly those made of green sand. 
     Says one description on a helicopter company tour website: "Papakolea, otherwise more commonly known as Green Sand Beach, is made of grains of greenish semi-precious stones known as Olivine, which erodes out of basalt (lava) flows. The crystals are heavier than most sand types on the beach and remain behind when lighter sand grains are washed away by strong wave activity. The Green Sand Beach is located at the bottom of an old cinder cone, Pu'u Mahana, near South Point. The trail to the Green Sand Beach is about two and a half miles long, and towards the end of it you'll get your first look at the remnants of the cinder cone - the source of the green sand. Visible just above the rim is a glimpse of the olivines being washed down the slope." Green Sand Beach is listed as one of the flyover places during flights from the Waikoloa resort area.
Black Sand beaches are also mentioned in helicopter
tour promotions. Photo by Peter Anderson
      Another helicopter company promotion states, "Enjoy the Hawai`i few people ever witness on our one-of-a-kind air adventures .....Whether flying Doors-Off over the volcano to feel the heat of the lava, hovering beside a 2,000 foot waterfall, landing for stunning views on an epic ridge top, or photographing the remote beauty of Hawai`i’s rare rain forest valleys, black and GREEN sand beaches..."
   A statement from the United Mountain View Coalition, concerning flights over houses, says, "As our economy improves, more visitors are making their way to the Big Island of Hawai`i. Many stay in the leeward area and charter helicopter flights from Kona to view the lava flow in the Puna District. These helicopter flights from Kona travel directly over the Mountain View area at low altitudes and reek havoc on our quiet neighborhoods. At times, they are as frequent as every five minutes. Often they fly low to provide their tour groups with beautiful views of our vista. However, they show very little consideration and many times fly directly over our homes, rattling everyone's nerves."
   A public meeting with Sen. Brian Schatz will be held April 18  from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the Sciences & Technology Building - Room 108, University of Hawaii `at Hilo. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard is also hosting Town Hall meetings in Kona on Tuesday from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at Kealakehe Elementary School and in Hilo on Tuesday, April 18 from 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Waiakea High School.

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WORRIED THAT THE U.S. IS HEADED DEEPER INTO WAR, with the missile strikes in Syria, Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard tweeted on Monday, "Those who've declared Trump a habitual liar now vilify those refusing to blindly follow him into another regime change war. Hypocrisy."
    She was referring to some political leaders, both Democrat and Republican, slamming her questioning of U.S. missile strikes on a Syrian airbase that President Donald Trump ordered. Trump said they were in retaliation for a Syrian military attack and killing of children and others with chemical weapons. 
    Gabbard stated: "I and thousands of my brothers and sisters-in-arms went to war in Iraq that was based on false intelligence and lies from our leaders. I believe it is the duty of every American to make sure this never happens again. We need to learn from Iraq and Libya--wars that were propagated as necessary to relieve human suffering, but actually increased human suffering many times over."
     U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, of Portugal, issued a statement "calling for restraint to avoid escalation of the situation in Syria, after the United States responded militarily to an alleged chemical weapons attack," according to a statement from the U.N. Said the U.N. Secretary-General, "Mindful of the risk of escalation, I appeal for restraint to avoid any acts that could deepen the suffering of the Syrian people. These events underscore my belief that there is no other way to solve the conflict than through a political solution." He urged all parties "to urgently renew their commitment to making progress in the Geneva talks."
U.N. Secretary General calls for restraint "to avoid any acts that could
deepen the suffering of the Syrian People." UN photo
       Gabbard pointed to a Washington Post opinion piece by Margaret Sullivan that reviewed the coverage of the missile firings by many journalists who came up with terms like "beautiful" and such statements as "Trump's Heart Came First," and "I think Trump became President of the United States tonight" after the missile strikes were carried out.
     After the 56 Tomahawk missiles sailed into a Syrian airbase from a U.S. ship in the Mediterranean Sea, Sullivan wrote in The Washington Post, "Why do so many in the news media love a show of force?" Sullivan quoted Ken Paulson, of the Newseum Institute's First Amendment Center: "There is no faster way to bring public support than to pursue military action. It's a pattern not only in American history, but in world history. We rally around the commander in chief and that's understandable."    
      Sullivan quoted Paulson saying that "news media 'seem to get bored with their own narrative' about Trump's failings and welcome a chance to switch it up. But that's not good enough, he said. 'The watchdog has to have clear vision and not just a sporadic bark.'"
     Wrote Sullivan, "Groupthink, and a lack of proper skepticism, is something that we’ve seen many times before as the American news media watches an administration step to the brink of war. Missile strikes may seem thrilling, and retaliation righteous. But journalists and commentators ought to remember the duller virtues, too, like skepticism, depth and context. And keep their eyes fixed firmly there, not on the spectacular images in the sky."
    Sen. Bernie Sanders, whom Gabbard endorsed for President last year, said after the missile strikes, "It is easy to go to war with other countries. It is not so easy to comprehend the unintended consequences of that war."

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Hei, traditional Hawaiian string figures used in chanting, will be
made at a demonstration on Wednesday at Kilauea Visitor Center.
NPS Photo
Hei Demonstration, Wed, April 12, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m., Kīlauea Visitor Center lānai in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. No‘el Tagab-Cruz teaches protocol and meaning behind traditional Hawaiian string figures that are used with oli (chants) to tell stories and connect with elements around us. Free; park entrance fees apply. 

Red Cross Volunteer meeting, Thu, April 13, 7 p.m., HOVE Road Maintenance Corp. office. For volunteers and those interested in becoming volunteers. Hannah Uribes, 929-9953

Recycling at Nā‘ālehu School, Sat, April 15, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m., Nā‘ālehu School Gym. Redeem your HI-5 sorted by type; receive 5 cents per container and additional 20 cents per pound on all aluminum. Atlas Recycling donates 20 cents per pound on all aluminum redeemed to the school. 939-2413, ext. 230.