Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Another “No Opinion” on Rail, Aiona this Time

According to a Honolulu Advertiser report today, Lieutenant Governor Duke Aiona says he doesn’t know what to think about rail transit – nope, doesn’t have an opinion one way or the other, not even after all these years of discussion, public hearings, media coverage and debate.

To be charitable, Aiona is following the lead of his boss, who also has no opinion and is still assessing public opinion. No doubt both will have revised and extended their remarks by the time the final election results are in if the rail question ever gets on the ballot.

The Real Issue

Aiona said today that litigation over whether the rail issue will qualify for a vote “will distract from what the real issue is.”

What do you suppose the lieutenant governor thinks that issue is? Anyone paying attention to rail should know by now that rail will restore mobility along the east-west corridor between town and Kapolei by giving commuters an alternative to sitting in traffic. That’s why you build it....and he doesn't have an opinion on it?

Protests to the contrary, the State’s top two elected leaders obviously do have opinions – or one opinion – about rail. They just don’t want to go public in case they find themselves out of step with the majority view.

Making Our Case

We noted yesterday that the thread connecting many rail opponents is that they’ll never use the train and therefore are against it. Here’s a comment below today’s online Aiona story in the Advertiser:

"EVERY tax payer in Honolulu has a right to voice an opinion on this issue. I am paying for the design, planning, construction, and operation of a rail system that I am 98% sure I will never use. If you think only those who live on the Leeward Coast should be able to speak out on rail, then perhaps they should be the only ones paying for it. I'm open to transit, but don't appreciate rail shoved down my pocketbook." 

In other words, you’ll ride it, not me, and I’m not going to pay for it!  (Stomp foot now.)

It’s self-interest vs community interest played out daily in the papers’ Comments section. What ever happened to “everybody’s in the boat together”?

PS:  Don't miss my FULL DISCLOSURE ALERT by scrolling down here.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Lingle & Aiona are making a h-u-g-e mistake throwing their lot in the the anti-rail crowd. Call it a flip-flop, call it wishy-washy, call it whatever, but Lingle & Aiona are making a 180 degree turn from their earlier tacit support of rail.

And let's face it those anti-rail clowns couldn't even get straight whether they want a ballot question in November, as their website says, or in a special election, which is what the petition says.

Worst of all, people aren't supporting the anti-rail folks. Even with a ton of media attention, the anti-railites are struggling to even gather 40,000 signatures.