Hawaii’s Mainstream Media Deliberately Stokes Division with Shoddy Journalism

Recent Spate of Silly Attempts by Hawaii Media Outlets to Inform about Ala Wai Harbor Serves Only to Divide Community

Failing Mainstream Media Outlets in Hawaii Desperate for Attention


A recent series of reports by Hawaii's mainstream print media outlets have been misreporting, perhaps out of ignorance, or lack of qualified talent, the events unfolding at the Ala Wai Small Boat Harbor in Honolulu.

A recent article in the Star Advertiser (April 9, 2019) seems almost desperate in its attempt to convince whoever still reads this newspaper, that Suzanne Case's rapidly sinking DLNR and it's ethics-compromised DOBOR division are doing the people of Hawaii a favor by handing over public lands and assets to for-profit private financial self-interests because these same properties have been so mismanaged over the years.  The good folks over at the Star-Advertiser certainly didn't let facts get in the way of their reporting on this issue; what they left out, among other things, was the fact that DLNR/DOBOR, whose singular responsibility to the State's public harbor system has been its management, has utterly failed in that commitment. For years, the public's harbor system has been grossly mismanaged to the point where harbor revenues diminished irretrievably, facilities became dilapidated and dangerous, and row after row of empty slips, despite high demand, go unfilled because of a huge paperwork quagmire brought about by Case and Underwood's unwillingness to implement modern management techniques.

Civil Beat's article, on the same subject (March 25, 2019), was just plain silly, and appeared to us to be written by a five-year old that had never even heard of the Ala Wai Small Boat Harbor before -- certainly uninformed and poorly researched writing.

One of the misconceptions that mainstream media would have us believe, obviously to stoke division in order to increase click-bait, is that the Ala Wai Small Boat Harbor is funded by public taxpayer revenue.  Actually, no, the public harbor system is not paid for by taxpayer dollars.  The public's harbor system is paid for by the Special Boating Fund, a reserve funded by harbor property revenues, slip rents and user fees.

The Ala Wai Small Boat Harbor is a mess, and the blame sits squarely in the lap of those who were charged with its care and management: Suzanne Case's DLNR, and Ed Underwood's DOBOR.  Read public testimony after public testimony on this subject here.

By handing over public properties to private interests, the State of Hawaii, Suzanne Case, and Ed Underwood are making a clear statement:  We have not the business acumen, intelligence, nor desire to manage public assets and will find every excuse to divest ourselves of this responsibility, even if it's at the expense of Hawaii's public. 

Because there is so much money involved in the transfer of oceanfront public assets to private, for-profit interests, the very real possibility exists that there is illegal collusion between some of Hawaii's State Agency operatives, some State legislators, and the private interests who stand to gain so much from a successful takeover of public lands.  There is some evidence for this collusion and a further investigation is underway.

Unfortunately, these media outlets are where some few people in Hawaii still get their news.  Thank goodness for the Web!

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sam monet
5 years ago

thanks for the help