In our sub-group at the LG speed dating event on Saturday, one of the topics we asked most candidates about was supporting quality agriculture land. In that group, the focus was largely about the Hoâ€˜opili development that may displace an existing farm if allowed to go forward. The concept of “food sustainability” has come up in conversations a lot lately. It seems to be on off-shoot of the standard “sustainability” buzz word that many people profess to support, yet few seem to take many tangible steps to make it a way of life.
Along those lines, for many months (years?) I have been thinking about signing up for one of those weekly vegetable boxes that some local farms offer. It is an idea that I have always liked, but never got around to implementing in my own life. Until now. A friend of mine recently used his status post on facebook to comment about his CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) vegie box that he just got from MAâ€˜O organic farms. Since I had been thinking about it already, that prompted to me to look into it once again. This time I followed through and purchased a subscription, so will now be receiving weekly boxes of fresh produce. 😀
According to CSAfarming.com, “At its heart Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) connects local farmers with local consumers.Â These consumers help cover the farmerâ€™s operating expenses in exchange for shares of produce grown or raised.Â Shares are usually purchased via varying types of memberships or subscriptions.” I chose to go with MAâ€˜O, partly because of the facebook-friend connection, but also because I know about their work in the community and have always admired what they do. There are other local farms that have this type of set up as well. Some are listed at this link, http://csafarming.com/hawaii-csa
If each of us does our part to support local agriculture, perhaps food sustainability can become more than just a concept in Hawaiâ€˜i. We need to push our elected officials to support saving quality agriculture land, but we also need to support those farmers ourselves as directly as possible.
We had our “political speed dating” event this morning with the 6 Democratic candidates for Lieutenant Governor. The turnout was a little less than we had hoped for, but I think that it went very well overall. Everyone that I talked to seemed to get something positive out of it.
Josh Frost started off with a few opening remarks while people milled about chatting and munching on refreshments. Barbara Polk introduced the six candidates while people made their way to their seats. In alphabetical order — Rep Lyla Berg, Sen Robert Bunda, Sen Gary Hooser, Rep Jon Riki Karamatsu, Sen Norman Sakamoto,& former Rep Brian Schatz. Then I had the pleasure of describing the logistics of how things would work — there were 6 clusters of chairs distributed in the room; each candidate would have 13mins with a group and then 2 mins to transition to the next group.
Our group started with Representative Jon Riki Karamatsu. He seemed a little unsure of how to proceed at first, but soon found his stride as he answered questions directed at him. As we went through the rounds, (more…)
An short excerpt from the CNN.Money website
Couples making more than $250,000 and individuals making more than $200,000 seem to be lawmakers’ answer to paying for … well, everything. Health reform, tax reform, random other legislative initiatives and, of course, deficit reduction.
The problem is that there’s just so much money that can be reasonably squeezed from this very small group of Americans.
“The president thinks we will somehow reduce the deficit and fix the tax code without raising taxes by a dime for those poor souls making a quarter million dollars-a-year or less. Unfortunately, that’s 95 percent of us. Can’t wait to see how he does it. ” Howard Gleckman, editor of the blog TaxVox wrote in a recent blog post.
The need to think (really big)
The only way to really lasso the debt situation, budget experts say, is to make a serious attempt to curb spending growth and boost taxes across the board (emphasis mine), but particularly with respect to Medicare and Social Security.
That will inevitably mean a reduction in the benefits promised to future retirees and a host of other castor-oil-type remedies that won’t garner much applause from the electorate.
Whether lawmakers will make that happen is an open question, Gleckman suggested.
“As long as politicians believe that fiscal discipline is career suicide, little will change.”
All I can say to the above is Amen.