Why State Legislators Shouldn’t be Proud of Home Rule

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I’ve noticed that several legislators have been celebrating the “home rule” issue when the Right the Farm act was being discussed.  Home rule essentially means that counties can enact whatever laws that they feel necessary at their level.  Many emails, tweets, and Facebook posts were posted by these leaders who decided to release their rightful reign on this issues to rogue counties like the Big Island and Kauai.

I’m not sure why these legislators are so proud of letting counties have more power in dictating farm laws when the reality is, the state has the necessary resources to enforce and enact such laws.  As I see it, these lawmakers have decided to not beef up their resources in their bills to address such issues, and failed to take care of the perceived problem, if any.

The message I get from this kind of celebration is, “I have clearly failed my constituents to take care of their concerns at my level, so I will burden the counties with such issues.”  The people asking for county laws claim that they have been failed by the state so that is why they are seeking county rule.  Why are state legislators celebrating their supposed miserable failure to take care of this issue?  If these people feel there was real harm done by the negligence of the state, why didn’t they take the state to court and sue them?

While these lawmakers keep pushing the home rule issue, they are also talking on the other side of coin about food sustainability for Hawaii and keeping the country country.  A certain handful of lawmakers have grandiose ideas of everyone in Hawaii having their own sustainable gardens to feed themselves.  Of course, these will only feed themselves and not others.  Certain lawmakers side with the keep the country country folks but don’t even take the time to hear the farmers out.

The reality is that this kind of idea is shortsighted and poorly thought out.  This will lead to many unintended consequences.  With counties having to create their own regulating bodies to enforced these rogue laws, the money has to come from their residents.  Residents will have to pay for all of this with increased taxes and fees.  With the high cost of living already an issue, who has the time and money to start up their own gardens to feed just themselves?  Financially, working a 9-5 job allows one to afford much more food than tending to a garden and more reliable for our food supply.  How are the other residents like the seniors and disabled going to bear the burden of higher costs of living?  Is this really the right way to do things for everyone?

I guess in Hawaii, we celebrate our failure to constituents by letting others make bad laws that ultimately costs everyone along the line.  It’s easy to talk about what is pono but apparently no one has really figured out how to walk the talk.

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Johnny Gordines: A Farmer Caught in the Crossfire

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When most people think of Hawaii, they have the image of beauty.  Beauty of the mountains, the white sandy beaches and bright blue oceans and also the natural fauna of our islands.   The florals of our islands are truly unique and has become a synonymous with what we think of Hawaii.   We are so lucky to have many small farmers who make up the Hawaii floriculture industry.  Many of them have been at their work for a long time sending that bit of aloha around the world.  One of those farms is run by Johnny and Terry Gordines, who owns Tropical Flowers Express on Kauai.

When the issue of Bill 2491 hit the island of Kauai last year, some farmers, who know the agriculture issues in Hawaii, spoke out.  Johnny was one of them.  Others stood in the background instead of taking the risk of being a target.  Little did he know that he was not dealing with local folks, and was barraged with disrespect and hate for submitting testimony for the bill and for a letter in The Garden Island paper.

Here’s his testimony that he sent it which was publicly filed and viewable to all.

July 26, 2013

 

To Kauai County Council members:

 

It would be wonderful if farmers could stand in their fields, wave their arms and weeds, insects and plant diseases would magically disappear. It is too bad this cannot happen.

 

Instead, to banish pests and disease, farmers rely on sound scientific practices. They use pesticides and seeds resistant to insects and diseases. Their crops thrive and people all over enjoy a bounty of healthful fruits and vegetables and beautiful flowers.

 

Farmers use pesticides with great care and regard for themselves, their families, the people who work in their fields and their neighboring communities. Authorities in the State of Hawai’i and the U.S. government monitor farmers and all of the work that goes into pesticide development and application.

 

With its Bill 2491, the Kaua’i County Council seeks to insert itself into regulating pesticides and GMO crops — the exact same things our state and federal governments are already doing. It would take years and untold millions of dollars for our county to develop the same expertise and professional staffing to do what Hawai’i and the federal government are already doing.

 

The bill will impose many of these costs on the commercial seed growers in Kaua’i. Faced with these new costs, the growers will probably close down their farms, layoff their workers and leave Kaua’i.  It has been stated by Mr. Gary Hooser, the introducer of the Bill 2491, that it will not affect the small farmers here on Kauai.  On the contrary, if the seed companies are forced out of business, the chemical supply companies here on Kauai (Crop Production Services and C.Brewer Chemical Co.) will be forced to go out of business. This scenario will be devastating to the farmers on Kauai. We presently purchase chemicals, soil amendments, irrigation supplies as well as organic materials from them!  This will have a major impact on my business Tropical Flowers Express. Please consider the impact on the Kauai farmers.

 

I do know that, as the former farm manager for the Kauai Ag Research Center operated by the University of Hawai’i, College of Tropical Agriculture, this bill would devastate our work. I have applied restricted use (RUP) and general use pesticides in my work at the University for the past 32 years and have been a certified Category 10 licensed applicator. Our employer has provided physical exams yearly as well as a cholinesterase exam.  Department of Labor & Industries rule (WAC 296-307-148) requires agriculture employers to provide blood testing to workers who handle pesticides that can lower “cholinesterase” in the body. In my 32 years of service for the U.H., neither mine nor any of the employees’ level of pesticide exposure or handling, has ever been at a level that was detrimental to our general health! I am now 63 years old.

 

I am also the president of the Hawaii Tropical Flowers and Foliage Association on Kauai and a Director for Kauai on the Hawaii Floriculture and Nursery Association our statewide umbrella organization. The Floriculture industry is a vanity industry where the newest and unique catches the attention of the market. This means for our industry to remain competitive we need to have new and cutting-edge flowers and foliage in new colors and styles. An important tool for this is to be able to get new varieties, longer lasting varieties, and healthier varieties through the use of science, technology and innovation, such as GMO.

 

We believe it is important to look to the future of our agricultural industry and not handicap ourselves with laws that seek to close the door on technology. It is important that we keep finding solutions to pest and diseases that currently attack our plants and crops. With disease and pest resistant plants, we would be able to use less pesticides, which would lower costs for farmers and have a greater yield of product, allowing our sector in agriculture to improve efficiencies.

 

Please, County Council members, before you vote on this bill consider the damage it can do to agriculture on Kaua’i — the jobs it can destroy and the businesses and communities that will suffer. Please think wisely and vote “No” on Bill 2491.

 

Sincerely,

 

Johnny Gordines

Usually in Hawaii, most people are pretty respectful of differences, however on Kauai, the story is completely different.  What happened on the social media was totally shocking to most levelheaded folks.  The anti-GMO mob decided to attack his business online through his Facebook page and his Yelp page.  Just see what this small farmer and business owner had to contend with, a bunch of bullies right in his backyard.

This is what was being said about his business online in public posts on Facebook after he spoke out.

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One activist even posted this comment on his Facebook business page too.

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They went on Yelp too and disparaged his business.  Some review have been removed but others persist.

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You can read the corresponding reviews below to the above clip since they have since been removed.

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This issue goes well beyond the corporate hate and government distrust that these activists share.  It hurts everyone in the process.  The attacking of small farmers like this, who know the technology and tools available and speak up, ultimately pay the price for doing so.  That is why so many farmers like Johnny Gordines and others look to the leaders, to address this issue first and foremost, with facts and evidence, and not the loudest voices of opinion.

Farmers keep our country country and help the spread the beauty of Hawaii around the world. The support of the legislators is crucial in perpetuating this because you can’t tear apart agriculture, because doing so hurts it as a whole.  We need leaders’ support to keep Johnny at his work to spread that bit of aloha around the world!  Support the Hawaii Right to Farm Bill and stand up for what is right!

Visit Johnny’s work at Kauaiflowers.com and on Facebook at Tropical Flowers Express.

Support the farmers with local voices!

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Priced out of Paradise: What’s Hawaii Leaders Doing?

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Tweet made by Rep. Wooley back in March 2013.

Last night at the Kaneohe Neighborhood Meeting, I had the opportunity to talk to a fellow resident. She came to the meeting because she wanted to speak out about an issue she was having with where she lived. Her and fellow tenants live in an affordable housing complex and were being subjected to a huge increase in rent because the units were sold by the City and County to a mainland developer.

She continued to share her story with me about her life and why she came to the meeting. She has worked as an educational assistant at Castle High School. She’s employed but doesn’t make a whole lot of money so a rent increase will leave her with only $100 left over each month. She could live with her daughter but wants to remain as independent as possible.  It’s a struggle to make ends meet but she does it.

I really started to think about this more later on. There are a lot if people who are in a similar situation to her. Any local person will tell you that cost of living here in Hawaii has been rising. We hear and see it everywhere. Everything is going up: gas, electricity, basic groceries, property taxes, rents, car registrations, sewer fees, and so on. The only thing not going up is our income to keep up with this, and that is a major problem.  So many folks are struggling and living paycheck to paycheck as well as working multiple jobs to get by.  How can one have quality of life when most your time is spent working just to survive?

Earlier in the year, there was a Star Advertiser article that looked at the poverty issue here in Hawaii with kids.  The percentage of kids living in poverty was 12.5% in 2005.  This year’s Kid’s Count Report found that there were 51,000 kids living in poverty, which is up to 17%!  Then when you look at poverty in seniors, the AARP has found that nearly 20% fall into that category.  There are a lot of people in need in our state and what is being done to address this?  How can we make peoples’ lives better?

As I listened to her story, I really thought about the politicians of Hawaii and how they get into offices making lots of promises that we know can’t be kept.  Or there are issues that they bring up that don’t really help anyone other than their own personal agendas most of the time.  It was really nice to see many local looking folks, most of whom were born and raised here and had long time established families in our communities.  As the residents of Kulana Nani apartments sat in the meeting waiting for their turn to speak up, I could not help but think more about this issue.

In the back of the room, I noticed that Rep. Jessica Wooley came in and sat in the back.  When it was her turn to speak up, I had to ask her my question.  “As you know, many people are struggling to keep up with the cost of living here.  What are you planning to do as ag chair to help address this issue to keep things affordable as well as keep farmers in business?”

Her answer was that she realized that many farmers are at risk for going out of business and that we need them and she has various programs and things in the works to address this.  We all know that when costs go up for farmers, their products will cost more also, which is why local produce tends to be more pricey.  Not once did she go on about the labeling issue for biotech food in this answer.  I know for a fact that the labeling will mean that food costs will go up since manufacturers will have to specially label food just for our state.  How is that really going to help keep basic foodstuffs affordable for people who are already struggling?  She didn’t bring up that issue until my second question for her, which I’ll continue on another blog post.

Politicians like Wooley and others like her who have decided to align with the activist groups like Hawaii SEED, the Babes Against Biotech, Hawaii GMO Justice Coalition, Hawaii Farmers Union United, and the Hawaii Organic Farming Industry are all about self serving their own interests.  They are pushing to grow their industry that may increase availability of organic produce but at a cost that most folks can’t afford.  They have plenty of money to fly between islands, stay in hotels or other accommodations, or get funded by their supporters through subscriptions or gofundme.com and don’t have to work like the real local people.

When you have a lawyer for a husband who makes a decent salary and a property in San Francisco, it is easy to tout your agenda.  It’s easy to listen to activists’ cries for a label for food that many of them consume for the sake of pushing your agenda and forget about your real constituents that struggle for years.  Have some empathy for these people Rep. Wooley for they are who you need to work for.  A good leader will look at all the issues, use evidence and best practices to help solve the problem, which is always more complex that what it appears.  Remember that you were elected by the very people in your community and should be lending your ear to them first and foremost, and not to a Babes Against Biotech activist or an outside environmental attorney, whom you fondly call Andy Kimbrell.

1000 Good Reasons to Label GMO Food: A Guide for Politicians

You really should be contacting your legislator now to demand that GMO foods be labeled!  Listed are some reasons that you can include in your letter to prove your points also.  Feel free to use it.

1) Monsanto owns everything and anything, including the sky.  You’ve heard it from your aunty and your uncle and your brother’s friend’s sister that Monsanto owns the whole world. Yes, the seed companies don’t even make the top 25 biotech companies in the world but you still believe everything that is told to you.  And because of it, you think they control everything including the weather with their purchase of the Climate Corporation. When one person tells you that the skies are filled with chemtrails, you trust them and believe them. That also explains why there is always rain predicted on your anti-GMO marches.
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2) Natural News told you that you will get cancer from it.  Natural News also suggested that you to rub urushiol oil as the ultimate sunscreen to protect yourself from skin cancer.

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3) The last issue of the Hawaiian Electric Company’s Green Hawaii Magazine stated that you must cook chemical free.  GMOs all have chemicals in it.  You don’t quite know which ones and don’t even realize that you yourself are made up of chemicals either.

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4) WALTER RITTE TYPES ALL IN CAPS AND IT MUST MEAN THAT WHAT HE SAYS IS TRUE.  YOU CAN ALWAYS TRUST SOMEONE WHO TYPES LIKE THIS.  HE FINDS HIS EXPERTISE IN SURFERS FOR HIS FOOD KNOWLEDGE AND EDUCATION.

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5) The Babes Against Biotech show folks that less clothes means more expertise in what is natural food.  That includes silicone and some botox tucked in the right places.  When they tell you to demand a label, you can trust a woman in a bikini.

6) You can trust a bus driver grandma who is a self professed expert on GMOs that you need that label.  When someone reads the latest things off of the internet, you can bet that it is true without a doubt.

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7) GMO Free Kauai has a very long and thorough list of scientists to prove that GMOs are dangerous.  That list includes world renown scientists like Dr. Dennis Poopy, Organic Eater, Dr. Ye Hua with 20K piece of art in China.

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8) When a holier than thou art food store tells you to demand a label, you should.  Forget the fact that the more they advertise their GMO free foods they profit nicely also.  Fuel the fear and you will get more people to buy into your scheme and demand that label!

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9) Hawaii wants papayas from Mexico, Thailand, and Brazil instead of local.  Keep demanding that label so Hawaiian papayas are shunned by customers.  That’s the goal of Hawaii SEED is to kill off just a few more farmers.

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10) Roseanne Barr told you that GMO are bad and that Hawaiians support crop destruction.

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11) A wealthy bunch of transplant lawyers from Earthjustice told you to speak up but don’t be rude when you make demands.  They can easily afford organic food for their families but you’ll have to wait until you get that label to make it affordable.  They have to keep getting in environmental lawsuits against the state so that they can collect on their court costs to keep them buying organic.  And these same lawyers quickly turn around and eat GMO food with anti-GMO county council members too right after telling others that it is dangerous.

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12) You can become allergic to any and every antibiotic there is on earth from eating GMO food.  If this man says its true, then by golly goodness it sure is!  Forget the fact that we’ve been modifying genetics in food for thousands of years, DNA has antibiotics and chemicals that will trigger immunosuppression in your shikimate pathway and cause symbiotic endotropy escalation.  Yes, it is that bad.

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13) There is thalidomide in transgenic papayas and you must demand a label for it because Terez Amato says so.

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14) GMO Free Mom also knows that transgenic papayas need labels because it contains Bt in it.  

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15) Sol Kahn believes that if people disagree with him at the farmers’ markets then he has a right to that label as well as a right to say bad things about him on the social media.

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16) Jessica Mitchell of the Babes Against Biotech believes that her organized thinking and expertise in chemicals and plants support her claim to a label.

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17) Twitter user CILoveU can’t believe that the sun can alter DNA and as a result of watching “Seeds of Death,” she has a right to know what she thinks she knows.

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18)  Apa Romano knows that there is an alteration in one’s body fauna when she consumes GMO and needs a label to know it.  Now what is body fauna?

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19) If Tulsi Gabbard associates with the Babes Against Biotech then you know that she is getting expert advice.  She can even tell what groups are shills and will tell her constituents also.  She’s also part conspiracy theorist too and believe in the Monsanto Protection Act.

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20) Consumers need a label because it is all about transparency and obeying the law and doing what is right.  These leader stands up for what is pono, including death threats to the mayor.

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21) Jessica Mitchell doesn’t need a science class to know anything which is why she demands a label of her food.  She might not be able to know what all the ingredients are but she has to have that label!  Please don’t tell her that organic foods do indeed use pesticides!

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22) Sol Kahn has been telling many residents that if you live by a seed farm, you’re living by poison.  Home values are going down and he can’t figure out his relationship to why it’s happening.  Label it, disclose it, whatever.

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23) Celeste Harvel demands that GE food be labeled and she wants farmer’s crops to be chopped down too.  She also nicely articulates her point of what’s wrong with it and shows her expertise in her comments.

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24) Lori Wilson Patch believes that this issue should be one where we must sit down and pray for people because her religion has told her so.  You can be sure that god is asking her to pray for this evil called GMO.

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25) Carolyn Fay Spector thinks that she needs to put a wanted poster for Dr. Brewbaker since he donated a million dollars to help CTAHR.  You can bet she will be front and center asking for a label.

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26) Merci Ritte doesn’t realize that we are made up of chemicals but believes that there are indeed chemicals being grown.  She has a right to know these chemicals!

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27) Sherrie Moore demands a right to know and will openly boycott local farmers who speak out for biotech.  She deserves to to have her food labeled but truly wants her food GMO free.

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28) Karen Chun knows that GMO papayas didn’t save the industry because she doesn’t grow it or even own a farm.  She has no clue that her talking bad about papayas is the real reason why people don’t accept biotech food.  She right there front and center demanding her right to know what she’s eating!

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29) Dustin Barca feels that anyone who speaks against Ohana O Kauai must be committing a crime against humanity.  That’s why he has to have his food labeled.

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30) Nomi Carmona of the Babes Against Biotech can’t imagine that anyone would speak up against activists and will encourage others to block such attempts.  You can be sure that she’ll be visiting legislators and demand that she needs her food labeled.

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32) Sky Wittenbach does know his genetics and how to sort fantasy from fiction.  When he talks, you should listen to his expertise.

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31 and beyond) Some of the best reasons to create a law to label GE foods is because these constituents that are asking you for it REALLY LOVE THEIR FARMERS.  Just read below for what they have told farmers…

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So politicians of Hawaii, are you going to listen to these people demanding a label and more regulations on farmers?  Your loud constituents are really helping all farmers and doing our islands a huge favor.  Thank you for listening to them and not listening to the farmers.  

Rep. Jessica Wooley stated that she would like GE food labeled and would support an education campaign.  How do you plan on educating these folks Rep. Wooley, when you yourself make up stuff by stating there is no regulations around it and bungle up the GMO is the same as pesticide issue? 

We appreciate all the support we get from the leaders of our islands as we work on our farms.  The future generations are very secure in knowing that you’re supporting them.  Or are they really?

***All comments listed have been publicly posted on the social media.  You said it and you should be held accountable for what you say.***

Listen to the Farmers Representative Wooley

A few weeks ago at the Kaneohe Neighborhood Board meeting, I had the chance to talk in person to Representative Wooley.  She mentioned that we can contact her as to what laws she’d like us to consider for the upcoming session.  I decided to take her up on it and sent her this email tonight.  If you’d like to share a word or two with her you can contact her at repwooley@gmail.com or repwooley@capitol.hawaii.gov

Aloha Rep. Wooley,

I spoke with you the other night at the Kaneohe Neighborhood Board meeting and would like to take you up on the offer as far as what kind of legislation I’d like to see regarding agriculture in Hawaii.
As a daughter of a long time farmer and farming family for nearly 4 decades, I really think that as a leader, Hawaii needs to consider the bigger picture.  Your statement to me that we need to change the meaning of agriculture is very disturbing because for Hawaii. It is not only food that needs to be grown here.  We have many other thriving industries here from seeds to nursery plants and other non-food crops that would not fall under your umbrella definition.  If we want to grow more food, just going after the seed industry isn’t going to solve the problem.  As a leader, I would hope that you could see that.  That is a very linear way of looking at the problem which ultimately never solves anything.
If the goal is to grow more food in Hawaii, we have to look at all the issues that affect why we aren’t more self sufficient.  Look at the whole system to address the best way to reach the intended goal.  When you look at those issues like energy costs, labor, supplies, land issues, and the other factors, you can have a better view of a more holistic plan of solving this issue.  The problem has to be solved systemically.  Your simple solution of changing the meaning of agriculture to growing of food and asking for label for biotech food does nothing to make food more likely to be grown in Hawaii. It places a line between farmers and that is not what is needed.  As a leader for the agriculture committee, how can you best serve the farmers, not just a certain faction of them but all farmers?
Does siding with one kind of farmer do anyone any favors?  No, it doesn’t.  You as a leader need to band together all farmers to solve these problems.  That is the responsible thing to do.  Where does the research and evidence lead to?  That should be your guide through all of this.
I must also note that your broad statement that there is no regulation about GMOs is patently false.  If that were the case, why is it taking such a long time to get through the process to be approved?  I’d really appreciate it if you’d be more honest when talking about the issues.  You know darn well that there is many tests that have to be presented before anything is approved by the FDA, EPA, and USDA.  You may not be happy with the process, but don’t state outright lies about the issue.
I’m counting on you, as well as many the younger generation of farmers, who are hesitant on whether or not to continue family farms in this current environment.  They need to know if you are really going to be a proponent of agriculture and education and plan to secure the future of ag technologies in Hawaii since you stated that there will be an education campaign.  It may not make you popular to your activists but do the responsible thing for the real people who work and support agriculture in Hawaii.

Hawaii SEED Wants to Destroy Papaya Farmers

The Hawaii SEED version of Greenpeace photo shot.

Walter Ritte and his Hawaii SEED group are definitely helping farmers deal with issues, especially with papayas.  They are spending lots of money to test for GMO “contamination” so they claim but what have they done to solve the real problem that was happening?  *Crickets*

They did nothing.  That’s right, literally nothing. When farmers were getting hit in the 1990’s by the ringspot virus, they were no where to be found.  Nada, not around nothing.  Here’s what Hawaii SEED has to say about themselves: 

Hawai`i SEED incorporated as a non profit 501(c)(3) in September of 2005.

The corporation is organized for charitable, educational and scientific purposes to educate the public, government and business community about locally-based agricultural systems that create real food security for Hawai‘i and about the risk posed by certain agricultural and food systems while protecting human health and the environment.

Activities of Hawai‘i SEED include bolstering the community of sustainable farms and farmers throughout the state of Hawai‘i. By providing workshops to farmers, we hope to deemonstrate alternatives to genetic engineering. Hawai“i SEED facilitated the public testing of papayas for citizens throughout the state to determine if their fruit is contaminated with genetically engineered organisms.

Hawai‘i SEED also conducts general outreach to raise awareness about genetic engineering and alternatives to genetic engineering at public speaking events, and media outreach. We also give presentations to agricultural and other community groups about GMOs and their alternatives.

Note that they are not about research and contributing to agriculture but more about blocking what has been done with papayas.  What is even more disturbing is this statement:

While the GMO Papaya is resistant to papaya ringspot virus, it brought many more problems than it solved. The GMO Papaya has closed lucrative export and organic markets and always has a low price point. This technology has come with too many strings attached and Hawaii has lost almost half of its papaya farmers.

This group constantly touts anti-GMO wording like contamination and so on to disparage papaya farmers and wonders why papayas don’t sell well.  They proudly proclaim how they help test for GMO papayas but what good is that?  Why not spend that money creating your non-GMO virus resistant papaya if you really want to have sustainable agriculture?  

Then Hawaii SEED has to go on complaining how Hawaiian papaya is not being accepted in the worldwide market.  Um, if you’d stop spreading untruths about it, maybe more consumers would not be so afraid of our Hawaiian fruit.  Support all papaya farmers and maybe you can sell it better to help all farmers.  Hawaii SEED is not about doing farmers good, they are about taking things away like all activists.  They contribute nothing to Hawaii agriculture.  That’s the bottom line with these folks because it is all about taking and not giving.  

This group is a far cry from local folks too as we know it is being funded by outside contributors big time.  The truth is that Mr. Ritte enjoys his papayas and doesn’t care if it is GMO or not because he knows that it is fine.  Remember the March ag day Mr. Ritte?

How to Make Use of 4000 Anti-GMO Marchers

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Characters of the anti-GMO club of Kauai.

As I have followed so many commenters from the anti-GMO club there is definitely a pattern.  One one end you have the very vile, nasty, ones that have been fear mongered beyond recognition of a rational being.  On the other end you have those that believe that consuming organic food is much more holier than thou art and wanting a label.  Somewhere in between you have those that are anti-corporation, conspiracy theorists, and just plain old science deniers and earth saver greenie folks.  Also in the mix you’ll find the ban it all group, who really have no clue the extent of this technology.  It’s no wonder there are social workers, bus drivers, grandmas, pseudoscientists, criminals, entertainers, models, nurses, chemical sprayed doctors, religious preachers, radio hosts, MMA fighters, and surfers all in this mix.  Approximately 4000 of these folks supposedly marched on Kauai a few months ago to speak for the people.

You know, if 4000 really were a true number of people joining in, can you imagine the manpower you have there in one area?  They all marched along Rice Street for some distance that means the majority are all able bodied and has the potential to do something good with their energy.  That energy and planning should be put to good use to put their money where their mouth is.  I have a few suggestions for these marchers as far as how they could really strengthen their cause.

Help Kauai County Go Pesticide Free

We all know that they want less pesticide use by the seed corn farms that use 13% of the county’s total.  Who is using the most pesticides then?  It’s the county themselves!

Maybe on the next march, they can coordinate with the Kauai County to do a highway weed pulling patrol.  Spread out 4000 people along the highway to pull at least 50 to 100 yards of weed each and wow, imagine how much less spraying will be done and less contamination too?  You could do this every month and cut back or completely be pesticide free!

Another way that these marchers could help reduce pesticide use is to take advantage of the natural instincts of our little chihuahua terrier mixes that are so popular now.  If may be 20 marchers brought out their little dogs to the power plants or kept them tied to the power poles a few days a week, we could cut down the need for using rat poison since these little dogs are bred to kill rats.  Chemical free, all natural pest control at best which is what the anti-GMO club is demanding.

Start up the Save True Kauai Farms

It is pretty well known that Bette Midler is an anti-GMO activist also and she has lots of land on Kauai.  She has 1400 acres of it too!  We’d better alert Jessica Wooley because she doesn’t want to farm it for food but possibly grow hardwood trees on it.  Wouldn’t it be great if she donated a nice piece of her land to start up a Save True Kauai Farm there?  Or maybe a GMO/Pesticide Free farm there?  You could get that guy who couldn’t lease land from the seed companies and maybe 100 of the marchers to even work on that farm.  They appear to have lots of time since they were able to camp out at many of the hearings and stay really late there too.  The anti-GMO club can have their dream turned in to reality where they can feed the people their way.

Many people there also hate the dust from tractors plowing the lands.  If you take about 50 to 100 marchers and handed them a shovel and pick axe, you could plow a one acre field in no time with little to no dust cloud either.  Then instead of using heavy equipment to plant the seeds, each of these folks can hand plant it all.  Every few weeks they could come in again and do weed patrol too so that they don’t have to spray the dreaded weedkillers.  You can also bring in more marchers to do bug patrol too and pick off bugs from the plants to keep less pesticides off of it.  What a great way to teach the keiki to how to grow your own food and keep the dust and pesticides away!

Open an Ohana O Kauai Feed the Hungry Shelter

There are a lot of needy people across our islands and Kauai has its share.  The anti-GMO club staunchly believe that the seed companies are not feeding the world in any way or form.  With several thousands to volunteer and donate time, money, and energy, they could start showing the world their plan to feed the hungry because it is obviously more superior than what the other companies are doing.  This would truly be a great and innovating cause to show how much they malama the people and the land.

Then End of the Poisoning of Paradise

The potential conversion of marchers and people rising up to support this way of agriculture is truly amazing because it can be put to good use.  No one would have time to be sending death threats to the mayor, writing comments all over the social media, be exposed to less scary images on their Facebook feeds, accusing seed farm workers of killing babies and committing crimes against humanity, and will be able to live the natural healthy life that they all preach about.  Human energy can be converted to good when you put your money where your mouth is.  Volunteers anyone?

Last but not least…

Let’s do some math here…  4000 x $1.50 is $6000.  If all the marchers paid a mere $1.50, their bill would be covered.  Enough to pay the county back for their march and restore the county’s funds.  If some of the attendees could afford plane tickets, I’m pretty sure they could afford that pocket change to participate.  So has the Kauai County received some money to cover it yet???