Priorities

In just a few days, the World Conservation Congress will be convening in Hawaii to talk about the environment.  President Obama will also fly here and make an official announcement of the Papahanaumokuakea Monument expansion.  We are also in the midst of a tropical storm and a hurricane.  It’s a culmination of some interesting events but only telling of our priorities.

As an island state, we are highly dependent on outside sources of food and basic necessities.  It’s estimated that some 90% of our basic goods are imported because we can’t produce these necessary items here.  Not only are the local people dependent upon imports but so are all of the tourists that come year.  That includes all of the attendees of the conference too.  Everything from rice, bottled water, and even toilet paper tend to be hot ticket items when a possible storm hits us.  The canned goods also go flying off the shelf when we know that there might not be any food or power.

When we are forced to deal with the effects of Mother Nature, we won’t be turning to a tree hugger for our needs.  While environmentalists in Hawaii are celebrating the loss of ocean access to our fishermen, I mourn the loss of some of the most essential people in our state.  When there is no food, we will need to turn to those who are skilled in providing it.  They are the farmers, fishermen, and hunters of our islands who will be there to provide us with sustenance.

Every single one of us in Hawaii will turn to those that have their hands in the soil, oceans, or forests.  The farmers are the people who know how to use that soil to turn it into food.  They also have heavy equipment that’s very useful for unplugging flooded streams or moving large boulders.  Their large delivery trucks can help get food and supplies across the island to those who are in need.

The fishermen have the skills and know how to gather food from the oceans.  They have the gear to fish for those who can’t fish or feed themselves.  They also have boats that can help transport good across the state to other when other access points aren’t available.  These folks have amazing skills in catching food, but also traversing the oceans.  The fishermen can help provide additional rescue services if there is a need as they know the oceans like the back of their hands.

The hunters are skilled in knowing the landscape and forests.  They too can gather food from the wild animals and feed many people with their skill sets.  They know the terrains and the forests to recognize changes in the landscape.  When the markets have no meat, the hunters can set forth in the forests to find food for people who can’t.

So if that storm hits us, I hope that it’s a wake up call to President Obama and all the environmentalists celebrating the loss of fishing in Hawaii.  The environmental movement has decided to focus on taking away access and tools to the farmers, fishermen, and hunters.  It’s easy to do when you’re refrigerators are full and you’ve got all what you need.  Those who feed us can’t keep doing our jobs if we are faced with attacks that impeded our ability to preserve our ways of living.  What the tree huggers don’t realize is that when all is said and done, they will be turning to us to feed them.  All of the environmentalists depend on someone to feed them because they can’t feed themselves when worst comes to worst.

Even the politicians like President Obama, Senator Brian Schatz, Senator Mazie Hirono, and our Governor can’t feed the masses and have never fed the masses.  None of them have any skill set to turn that soil into productive land for generations or can turn to the ocean and feed hundreds of people with what they catch.  None have shown that they can go into the forests to find food to feed families year after year and for generations to come.  However, despite their lack of skills, they are more than eager to make policies that affect Hawaii’s ability to feed itself.

There’s something very wrong with the environmental industry in Hawaii when it sets forth to put those who feed us out of business.  The very people who have the skills and resources to nourish us deserve praise and appreciation for the hard work that they do, not demonization that have no factual basis.  When it comes down to the reality, you know that the tree huggers will ultimately have to eat and who will they turn to?  The very people they disparage.  Is that really the pono thing to do?

If someone tells you that the farmer, fisherman, or hunter are just terrible people, before you believe it, ask that person if they can feed you.  It’s most likely that the person saying those things can’t ever feed themselves.  It’s about time that we realize who we really need in Hawaii.  If that tree hugger isn’t feeding you, should they be the ones taking away the way of life from those who actually are?

Environmental policies must be evidence based and should never be used to take away resources that feed the population without good reason.  The green movement has to stop misinforming people and either show a better way to do this or get out of the way.  When there is no food, you know that you’ll be turning to those who are providing the food.

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Fake Food Group: The Center for Food Safety

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Since June 12, 2016, Hawaii has been experiencing a hepatitis A outbreak.  This indeed is a food safety issue that the Hawaii Department of Health has been trying to solve.  Some 206 cases have been reported and the source has been found, frozen scallops from the Philippines.

Since June, there has been no peep from the Hawaii Center for Food Safety or its parent group, the Center for Food Safety, warning the public of this at all.  Now if this were truly a food safety group, wouldn’t they be focused on this very real issue sickening people? Even more so, you’d think they’d even be helping people get information on where to get the hepatitis A vaccination also.  None of this was ever posted on any of their media to notify the public.  It wasn’t until this past Wednesday that they actually posted that comment on their Facebook page.

So what prompted them to address the issue nearly 2 months late? I decided to post a comment on the Civil Beat article asking why they were doing nothing about it.  Well, it clearly shows that Ashley Lukens and her boss, Andrew Kimbrell, aren’t anything about food safety.  They represent nothing other than a front group for the organic industry.  Look at their hashtags and the truth is shown.

Their comment on supporting local food is even more funny because the increased demand for organic foods have forced much of it to be grown internationally!  Is organic food from China safer that what we grow in Hawaii?  They supported a ban of GM papayas that saved one more  local source of food here!

I’d love to pressure CFS to even question the expansion of the Papahanaumokuakea monument if keeping food local is so important.  They should be against the expansion that would increase our need for foreign seafood sources.  They even should drop their lawsuit against the GMO salmon if we want more domestic food sources!

The kicker of this whole issue is that they are proposing to block the GMO mosquito too, which has nothing to do with food safety.  I wouldn’t be surprised if CFS is behind the scare campaigns being launched in various cities to block GM mosquitos and pesticide spraying.  Maybe CFS wants us to be the human experiment of what happens to people when they ignore or block science.

Then again, their might be an agenda that we aren’t really seeing here.  If more organic food is recalled for contamination, it means more hospital stays and in hepatitis A, a vaccination.  If I thought like an anti-Monsanto conspiracy theorist, it might be that CFS is really a big pharma to get people vaccinated!  You know that we don’t want to become human guinea pigs!

 

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Well, the Center for Food Safety must be getting pretty desperate when they pull the “woo” over folks by bringing in the Food Babe.  That estimated $15k they are paying her to come makes for a great vacation in Honolulu where she will face living in GMO ground zero.  She’ll have to eat her GMO hotel food and sleep on Monsanto cotton sheets too.  How dreadful!

I know I must be creeping under their skin when I get a hashtag too, #GMOjoni.  I honestly am not intimidated by their personal attacks.  I basically want a few things from them if they wish I’d stop calling this stuff out.  Ashley and her wanna be farm folks need to stop lying about farmers and learn first.  She needs to take a tour or visit CTAHR professors other than Dr. Valenzuela.  Then I want her sugar daddy’s group to drop those lawsuits against the salmon and GM mosquito.  Let progress happen instead of blocking things and giving no alternative.  Take your political science and law degree to learn how you can use science to improve people’s lives instead of endangering all of us by stirring up ignorance and the angry mob.  Got that Ashley?

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Pain and Suffering

I felt plain old horrible yesterday.  I had some major pain along my ribs that ached.  I suspected that it was caused by the crack I heard after being smashed by 185 lbs of children on a carnival ride.  I had to breathe shallow and hunch to avoid pain.  Even with some ibuprofen, I still felt awful.

I took myself and my 3 kids to the urgent care right after work.  Luckily my husband could pick them up since it would mean a long night.  I waited over two hours to get seen and have an x-ray.  Luckily, nothing was broken, but I did have mastitis, which contributed to my pain.  The doctor gave me pain meds and a course of antibiotics.

With each of my kids, I’ve tried to nurse them as long as possible.  My eldest nursed until she was 27 months old.  My second child took the cake and kept at it well past 3 years old.  I had to take a trip to get her to stop.  My son is still nursing at 20 months.  He’s my erratic nursing monster so I’ve had my share of mastitis with him.

Usually, I’m able to take care of it without medication, but this time, I could not.  It was unbelievably sore, to the point where I cried in pain when my chest was bumped by him trying to snuggle.  My poor son was so confused as to why I wouldn’t let him jump on me.

Thankfully, I managed to get in a dose of antibiotics that reduced my infection significantly this morning.  After suffering yesterday, I couldn’t imagine what would happen if I didn’t get medication.  Then it hit me how important antibiotics can be for animals too.

While many activists are demonizing the use of antibiotics and food companies are jumping on the bandwagon, I can’t help but think how cruel this antibiotic free label is for animals.  If someone denied me medicine, I’d be suffering.  If a sick animal was not given medicine, it would be suffering also just because a non-food producing activist doesn’t understand the process.

The more I see these non-profit advocacy groups trying to fear monger and dictate policy, I can see that these poorly vetted decisions indeed cause suffering.  These food fads aren’t making agriculture any better.  It actually promotes the very thing that we want to avoid in many cases.

After feeling so sick last night, I’m going to avoid any food company who touts anti-scientific food fads. Those behind those bad decisions aren’t helping anyone but marketing to ignorance and fear.  The ignorance and fear industry can only criticize but haven’t shown us a better way of doing things.  If they can’t come up with an actual better practice, they are only talk.  Those talkers need to do some science and prove that their way is better.  image

 

 

Fleeting Beauty

imageAs I’ve gotten older and have had several relatives pass away, I’ve come to realize how short life is and the value of the time we have on earth is so temporary.

When my maternal grandfather passed away nearly 15 years ago, our family had the arduous task of going through his belongings.  It was very painful to have to give up the things that reminded me of him.  I didn’t want to part with those aloha shirts that he loved to wear to parties.   They weren’t any brand names or fancy prints.  These shirts were just the typical Sears or JCPenny types.   To me, that was my grandpa.

As the years went on and my heart healed from his passing, I found it wasn’t the things that gave me comfort.  The pieces of clothing eventually made its way to Goodwill for someone else to bring life to again.  What I did manage to do was years before his passing, I made a tape recording of us talking story about the day Pearl Harbor was bombed.  Hearing his voice and his story was so comforting.  Even all the pictures I took with him were stories of the time I had with him.

I’ve lost so many dear relatives in the last several years and I miss them so much.   None were rich but they all left me with rich memories that money could never buy.  They taught me so many lessons in life about generosity, kindness, and happiness.  Those are things a million dollars could not give anyone.

In the age of social media and selfies, I’m not one to be there posting about me.  I don’t wear expensive designer clothes or drive a fancy car.  Nor do I spend tons of money on any makeup or beauty products.

For a short time in college I almost got swept up into the materialism of makeup and clothes but reality hit when it came time to go to grad school and I had to foot my own bill.  My folks were not wealthy so it meant working my way through school.  I gave up on the outer beauty expenses and focused on what I could do to give back to my community with education.

I still believe in the power of education today and my hope is that my children will also have that opportunity to better their lives.  We can talk about solving problems like climate change politically, but the real problem solvers will be those who are educated to solve them.  We will turn to science to track these issues and figure out ways to do things better for the next generation.

You won’t see me spending $7939 on media opportunities ever.  My white hair is showing as well as the wrinkles and age spots on my face.  I’ll still go to my hair dresser who has cut my hair for the last 30 years at a local salon.  I’ll still drive my 8 year old car with all the secondhand car seats in it.  I’ll still shop at Times Supermarket in search of the best deals.

What you will see me doing is giving support for education and leading by example to my children in the fulfilling their maximal potential for the future. I will teach them to not fear hard work and critical thinking.  I hope that they will have a sense of appreciation for the life they have and where we came from.  I hope that they will always strive to do their best and give it their all in life.  My journey will help to create the paths for them to follow and eventually go on their own path.  I won’t need a Coach bag or a $1000 spa day to do that either.