PDHblog This is a place for members of Progressive Democrats of Hawai‘i to express their thoughts, hopes and exasperations about political happenings.

September 28, 2010

Congresswoman Mazie Hirono Completes Survey

Filed under: Elections,HI Politics,National Politics — frosty @ 7:40 pm


1. What steps do you think Congress should take to rebuild our economy on a more sustainable, yet economically viable basis?

We need to make sure that people have jobs, and we need to make sure that the measures we pass have a proven economic benefit. I voted for the Recovery Act because it would produce jobs. And in spite of the Republican rhetoric about the Recovery Act, “not doing anything,” the fact is that the Act has brought over a billion dollars back to Hawaii and put firefighters and police and construction workers and teachers — all here in Hawaii — back to work. I voted for the extension of unemployment benefits because statistics show that it would — far more than tax cuts to the rich — help stimulate the economy.

Stimulating the economy is also about preserving and diversifying our economy here in Hawaii. For example, I voted for a bill that provides tax incentives to the solar energy industry. I met with people working in that industry here in Hawaii, and they told me that if this bill didn’t pass, then they’d have to lay off many of their employees. So I helped pass the bill to help preserve that local “green” industry. (more…)

April 29, 2010

Rafael del Castillo Completes PDH 1st Congressional Survey

Filed under: 5Economics,Elections,HI Politics,National Politics — Tags: , — frosty @ 8:44 am


The U.S. is in the midst of a prolonged economic crisis. Globally, we are also facing a long-term environmental crisis. In recent campaigns, there has been talk of creating “green collar” jobs and reducing our carbon footprint.

1. What steps do you think Congress should take to rebuild our economy on a more sustainable, yet economically viable basis?

As outlined in my subsequent remarks, we must eliminate from national economic policy the trickle-down theory at transferred from the Bush Administration to President Obama’s Administration in the bailout elements of the stimulus. Our policy must be recommitted to ameliorating the maldistribution of income. We must undertake tax reforms that eliminate regressive policies from taxation of the vast majority of Americans, as discussed below and on my website. Those policies will stimulate savings and investment and increase income and wealth in the middle and working classes, which is the best policy for moderating the effects of future economic variations. We must be vigilant in eliminating the type of profiteering that turned our financial sector into a free for all, instead of a reliable national partner for economic safety and stability. We the need creativity that resides there to meet the needs of broadening wealth, but we must insist that all financial instruments are regulated and protected by adequate reserves, among other things. (more…)

April 9, 2010

PDH Testifies in Support of HCR 282

Filed under: Elections,HI Politics,Legislature,National Politics — Tags: , — frosty @ 9:10 am

Thursday, April 8, 2010
House Committee on Judiciary
In Support of House Concurrent Resolution 282

TO: House Committee on Judiciary
Chair Karamatsu, Vice-Chair Ito

FROM: Progressive Democrats of Hawai‘i
Co-Chair Josh Frost

Aloha Chair Karamatsu, Vice-Chair Ito, and Committee Members,

I am here, testifying before you today, on behalf of the Progressive Democrats of Hawai‘i (PDH) in support of HCR 282. (more…)

February 12, 2010

Hanabusa Completes PDH Survey

Filed under: Elections,HI Politics,National Politics — Tags: , — frosty @ 10:07 am

Here’s Senate President, Colleen Hanabusa’s responses to our survey:


What steps do you think Congress should take to rebuild our economy on a more sustainable, yet economically viable basis?

My first priority in Congress will be to put people back to work and to get our economy moving again.

I support increasing our investments in America’s people and infrastructure, including aggressively expanding education and training initiatives, preparing America’s students to compete with the best and brightest around the world. Our students can only do this if we provide them with the tools that will let them excel.

I’ll also work to strengthen America’s technology sector, energy policy, educational systems, and transportation infrastructure so that our students and America remain at the cutting edge. These investments will lead to fostering and sustaining America’s economic strength.

While the rising national debt continues to remain a concern, I do know that the more prosperous America is, the faster we can pay off the debt incurred. (more…)

February 6, 2010

Case Completes PDH Survey

Filed under: Elections,HI Politics,National Politics — Tags: , — frosty @ 10:00 pm

PDH is in receipt of surveys from both Senate President Colleen Hanabusa and former Congressman Ed Case. However since Ed completed the survey first, I thought it only fair his responses be posted first. Look for Colleen’s responses to follow in the coming days.


What steps do you think Congress should take to rebuild our economy on a more sustainable, yet economically viable basis?

All sustainable economies rest on three foundations: (1) the facilitation of private effort encouraging economic activity to enable people to pursue the lives they seek and to generate fair tax revenue for collective efforts through our government; (2) reasonable levels of taxation and regulation that do not stifle individual initiative yet do curb abuses and provide for common needs; and (3) stable societies where wealth is fairly distributed and collective needs are addressed. Congress must set the big pictures balance for all three, especially in terms of taxation and regulation and establishment of funding of core government efforts such as education, but cannot and should not micromanage economic activity. (more…)

February 4, 2010

Afghanistan Resolution

Filed under: 1Stop War,National Politics,SHAPES platform — rachel @ 3:56 pm

At our January general membership meeting, we discussed and passed a resolution regarding the situation in Afghanistan. It is now a month later and I am getting ready to go to our Feb general membership meeting… but I figured this was worth posting for people to see anyway.

If you agree with the sentiment, call your Congressional Representatives and let them know!

Afghanistan Resolution:

The dispatch of thirty thousand additional troops to Afghanistan is a profound mistake that is likely to undermine the credibility of the Obama administration and any of the progressive reforms it is trying to enact. Our soldiers will be used to prop up one of the world’s most corrupt regimes, one that has recently “won” a fraudulent election and has little if any appeal to the people of the country. In fact, its power does not extend outside of Kabul. American soldiers and firepower will alienate Afghans and drive them to support the Taliban.

The scenario we are following is familiar from Vietnam. As Under Secretary of State George Ball (the one senior advisor to advise Lyndon Johnson to withdraw) later recalled: “Nobody was prepared to concede that any particular step would require any further step.” We will send more and more troops under the guise that “progress” is being made. The casualties we take and treasure we expend will become justifications for deeper and deeper involvement. President Obama’s decision is sending us into a new quagmire which will split the Democratic Party and sabotage hope for genuine “change.” We urge the Hawaii Democratic Party to insist on withdrawal of all troops from Afghanistan.

January 3, 2010

Progressives Come Out Asking Obama To Do Better

Filed under: 2Healthcare,5Economics,Barack Obama,General,National Politics — frosty @ 4:15 pm

This past Saturday, a number of progressive activists, including a number of PDHers come out to Kailua to urge President Obama to do more, to do better.

A number of us have been disappointed by his position on a number of issues, including the health care reform bill that could be much, much better, and has provisions that don’t solve the problem, but rather serve as a boondoggle for private insurance companies. While many of us strongly support a Single-Payer system of health insurance, given the political realities we’re today faced with, we were happy to settle with a ‘strong’ public option, which is in danger of being excluded from the final language.

We’re also unhappy about Obama’s decision to send more troops into Afghanistan, escalating a war that’s been waging for the better part of a decade, with no end in sight.

We also haven’t seen the financial reform he promised during the campaign. Instead, its been more of the same complicit favoritism toward the same financial firms and banks who’s irresponsible practices caused the worldwide financial meltdown and current economic crisis.

Obama can and must do better.

Here’s some pictures from the morning.

December 4, 2009

Howard Dean: Is the Current Healthcare Bill Worth Supporting?

Filed under: 2Healthcare,National Politics — Bart @ 7:09 pm

As the healthcare reform bills move through Congress, many progressives are starting to wonder if the bills are worthy of support. Former DNC Chair, Dr. Howard Dean, was a recent guest host on the Rachel Maddow Show and addressed this very question. An excerpt:

In order to have insurance reform, you need two things. The first is making sure insurance companies can‘t turn you down for any medical reason. That‘s called guaranteed issue—and that‘s in the bill. But that‘s only effective if you make sure that the coverage is affordable. And that‘s not in the bill.

As the bill is written now, the insurance companies will still be allowed to gouge their customers if they have illnesses, to charge you two or three times what your neighbor gets charged.

A lot of the insurance reform in this bill is gone. The only real reform that‘s left is the public option. If that‘s compromised away, this bill is no longer health care reform. It‘s just a huge gift to the health insurance industry from the same people who bailed AIG out, the American taxpayers.

Howard Dean discusses the bill with Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt):

Dr. Dean interviews Rep. Anthony Weiner to get a perspective from the House. That video after the bump. (more…)

June 22, 2009

Support Booming for ‘Public Option’

Filed under: National Politics,SHAPES platform — frosty @ 8:59 pm

in a recent new york times/cbs news poll, reuteres reports, 85% of respondents

wanted major healthcare reforms and most would be willing to pay higher taxes to ensure everyone had health insurance.

this is HUGE. most people usually respond to the notion of higher taxes with some level of annoyance or anger. but in this case, the opposite seems to be the case. while i don’t know that we have obama to thank for the results of this poll, though. instead, i think people understand, as some fundamental level, that real and major changes are need to fix our health care system. (more…)

April 25, 2009

Sen. Inouye in the Loop?

Filed under: HI Politics,National Politics — Tags: , , , — BobSchacht @ 4:42 pm

There has been a flood of new information lately on “The Program” of warrantless wiretapping and torture conducted by the Bush administration (see The Torture Document Dump Timeline, by: emptywheel, Saturday April 25, 2009)

Lost in this blizzard of news has been the role played by our own Sen. Inouye. But his role has not escaped the notice of the intrepid Marcy Wheeler (aka “Emptywheel”) in one of her recent diaries, on Pelosi: Of Hidden Memos and Covert Ops Hidden in Supplementals

We know that BushCo briefed Toobz Stevens and Daniel Inouye on the warrantless wiretap program in December 2001. … I wonder if they got more substantive briefings than the Gang of Four?

…And finally, a point klynn and Sara have been making–the guys who did this torture were contractors, not CIA officers. Which means they only had to get Uncle Toobz and his buddy Inouye to approve a contract in an emergency supplemental. And voila! We’ve got state-sanctioned torture!

We need to find out what Sen. Inouye knows about these matters. Did he aid and abet the Bush Administration in what may be war crimes? What was his role?

(Blogger Emptywheel has been on a roll lately, having been cited twice by the New York Times and then by the Washington Post for her work exposing that Khalid Sheik Mohammed had been waterboarded 183 times in a month. She has recently been the subject of several online tributes at DailyKos and FireDogLake.)


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