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President’s Corner

‘Jenga’ budgeting is no game

Last week, I accidentally demolished the state budget. What’s more, I was helped by Maui residents who attended the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii’s recent event in Wailuku concerning “The real state of Hawaii’s finances.” The guest speaker for the event was Sheila Weinberg of Truth in Accounting, an organization dedicated

Read More →

One step forward, two steps back

Hawaii leaders should take notice: Everywhere you look, there are indications that people are losing patience with the current style of governance and the uncertainty of living under executive orders. The opaque nature of the tier system and emergency orders raises an important question: Has the lack of real discussion over the

Read More →

Are we witnessing an unacceptable attack on liberty?

Gov. David Ige’s latest round of COVID-19 emergency rules prompts me to ask a troubling question: When does a temporary state of emergency end and an unacceptable attack upon liberty begin? In Hawaii, we now find ourselves facing hard questions about liberty and government power that were easy to dodge

Read More →

From ‘E komo mai’ to ‘Stay away’?

Hawaii is more than happy to tax the golden goose of tourism. But when it comes to feeding, caring for and cleaning up after it, we can’t seem to get on the same page. Last week, the Hawaii Tourism Authority announced a plan to decrease tourism on Oahu. Yes, the

Read More →

State law never meant to create indefinite emergency

With the state awash in rumors about new COVID-19 restrictions — or even another lockdown — we are witnessing the breakdown in trust that occurs when there is not enough transparency in government decision-making. For more than a year, we have been living under a different kind of governance, with

Read More →

Where’s the aloha for Hawaii bar owners?

No local businesses have had an easy time navigating Hawaii’s state and county lockdowns. But Hawaii’s bars might be among those that have suffered the most under the confusing COVID-19 tier system. Even now, many local bars and restaurants are struggling to handle the demands of Tier 5, which requires

Read More →

Coalitions critical if we hope to reform the Jones Act

Webinar panelists were, from left, Bob Gunter, Bethany Marcum, Rafael Velez and Colin Grabow. “If an enemy has alliances, the problem is grave and the enemy’s position strong; if he has no alliances, the problem is minor and the enemy’s position weak.” ~ Sun Tzu in “The Art of War.”

Read More →

State tourism policy truly is a mish-mash

If you want to find something that perfectly captures Hawaii’s schizophrenic tourism policy, you couldn’t do much better than House Bill 862. The bill sends an inconsistent message about tourism, suggesting that the industry shouldn’t have government funding while simultaneously making it more vital to state revenues. It was one

Read More →

High taxes pushing family and friends to leave

When you live in Hawaii, you get accustomed to saying goodbye. As a father, I’ve watched my children leave for the mainland to start college or their careers. And I know there’s a good chance they won’t be coming back, except for short visits. I am not alone. Who hasn’t

Read More →

‘Jenga’ budgeting is no game

Last week, I accidentally demolished the state budget. What’s more, I was helped by Maui residents who attended the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii’s recent event in Wailuku concerning “The real state of Hawaii’s finances.” The guest speaker for the event was Sheila Weinberg of Truth in Accounting, an organization dedicated

Read More →

One step forward, two steps back

Hawaii leaders should take notice: Everywhere you look, there are indications that people are losing patience with the current style of governance and the uncertainty of living under executive orders. The opaque nature of the tier system and emergency orders raises an important question: Has the lack of real discussion over the

Read More →

Are we witnessing an unacceptable attack on liberty?

Gov. David Ige’s latest round of COVID-19 emergency rules prompts me to ask a troubling question: When does a temporary state of emergency end and an unacceptable attack upon liberty begin? In Hawaii, we now find ourselves facing hard questions about liberty and government power that were easy to dodge

Read More →

From ‘E komo mai’ to ‘Stay away’?

Hawaii is more than happy to tax the golden goose of tourism. But when it comes to feeding, caring for and cleaning up after it, we can’t seem to get on the same page. Last week, the Hawaii Tourism Authority announced a plan to decrease tourism on Oahu. Yes, the

Read More →

State law never meant to create indefinite emergency

With the state awash in rumors about new COVID-19 restrictions — or even another lockdown — we are witnessing the breakdown in trust that occurs when there is not enough transparency in government decision-making. For more than a year, we have been living under a different kind of governance, with

Read More →

Where’s the aloha for Hawaii bar owners?

No local businesses have had an easy time navigating Hawaii’s state and county lockdowns. But Hawaii’s bars might be among those that have suffered the most under the confusing COVID-19 tier system. Even now, many local bars and restaurants are struggling to handle the demands of Tier 5, which requires

Read More →

Coalitions critical if we hope to reform the Jones Act

Webinar panelists were, from left, Bob Gunter, Bethany Marcum, Rafael Velez and Colin Grabow. “If an enemy has alliances, the problem is grave and the enemy’s position strong; if he has no alliances, the problem is minor and the enemy’s position weak.” ~ Sun Tzu in “The Art of War.”

Read More →

State tourism policy truly is a mish-mash

If you want to find something that perfectly captures Hawaii’s schizophrenic tourism policy, you couldn’t do much better than House Bill 862. The bill sends an inconsistent message about tourism, suggesting that the industry shouldn’t have government funding while simultaneously making it more vital to state revenues. It was one

Read More →

High taxes pushing family and friends to leave

When you live in Hawaii, you get accustomed to saying goodbye. As a father, I’ve watched my children leave for the mainland to start college or their careers. And I know there’s a good chance they won’t be coming back, except for short visits. I am not alone. Who hasn’t

Read More →