SNORKEL BOB LOVES KANIELA ING SO MUCH HE LOANED HIM NEARLY 2GS
So apparently the Hawaii Republican Party is quite scared of South Maui state representative candidate Kaniela Ing, because they’re filing multitudes of campaign spending complaints against him. A whole mess of them are detailed in an Oct. 5 Maui News story, along with Ing’s explanations and denials of wrongdoing. But one particular allegation–that Ing violated state law by accepting more than $2,000 from a contributor–caught our attention:
“He disputes the accusation that his campaign accepted a contribution in excess of the $2,000 legal limit for his race,” reported the paper. “Ing explained that he received both a $1,000 contribution and a $1,895 campaign loan from the same individual, as reflected in his campaign spending reports online. ‘In statute, if you fail to report a loan, it has to be counted as a contribution,’ he said. ‘The person who gave us the loan also gave $1,000, so it would be over the limit, but it’s been reported as a loan with all the paperwork sent in, so that claim has no standing.’”
Um, what individual? For some reason, The Maui News chose not to name the “individual” who loaned Ing $1,895 and gave him $1,000, even though all campaign contributions and loans are a matter of public record, so I will:
That’s right, folks: Snorkel Bob, one of Hawaii’s most famous marine writers and photographers, cut Ing a check for one grand on June 28 and then, on Aug. 9, loaned him nearly two grand.
“He’s a young guy with a lot of natural instincts,” Wintner told me this morning. “He was very persistent in seeking support from me. He speaks very clearly and he doesn’t blow smoke.” Wintner also said that also supported Ing because he was appalled at Republican incumbent George Fontaine’s negative mailers against former Representative Joe Bertram III.
Wintner said he loaned Ing the money because Ing miscalculated when he would receive public matching funds.
“He qualified for matching funds,” Wintner said. “They did not arrive when he thought they would. He might not get them for a week or so, so I loaned him the money.” Wintner added that Ing has since repaid him.
Wintner’s support for Ing is hardly a surprise for Maui News readers–on Sept. 28, the paper published a pro-Ing letter from Wintner:
“I have met with Kaniela Ing. I care not one zip about who was born where or years here or there. I assess on integrity and aloha and stated pledge to stand up for our reefs. I assess Kaniela Ing as the right man for the job.”
As for the controversy over his loan, Wintner was unconcerned.
“This ain’t my first rodeo,” Wintner said when I asked him about his other political advocacy. “I’m all in for [U.S. Senate candidate] Mazie Hirono and [Oahu Representative candidate/Speaker Calvin Say opponent] Keiko Bonk.”
MAUI CATTLE CO. CONSIDERING ENDING GRASS-FED BEEF
You know what’s depressing these days? The weather. Oh, I’m sure climate change-denying Republicans probably consider it comedy of the highest order, but for those of us who accept (notice I did not use the word “believe”) that science provides the most accurate explanation of the known universe to date, reading current weather reports is pretty dismal.
“Based on the Palmer Drought Index, severe to extreme drought affected about 39 percent of the contiguous United States as of the end of August 2012,” states the current National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)’s State of the Climate website (the website offers no data beyond August at this time). “About 55 percent of the contiguous U.S. fell in the moderate to extreme drought categories (based on the Palmer Drought Index) at the end of August.”
The online U.S. Drought Monitor, which is produced by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and NOAA, says things haven’t changed all that much since August. “The Upper Midwest, northern half of the Great Plains, and the West received little to no precipitation during the past 7-days,” states the Drought Monitor website, which was last updated on Oct. 2. “Temperatures for the period were generally above normal in the West (as much as 8 degrees above normal in the northern High Plains), 2-4 degrees below normal in the Great Lakes, Northeast, and Ohio Valley, and 2-4 degrees above normal in the Southeast.”
For many months now, virtually all of the western United States has been mired in drought conditions not seen since the 1950s. Even out here in Hawaii, reports the U.S. Drought Monitor, “Abnormally Dry” to “Extreme Drought” conditions exist over the entire state except the Hilo side of Hawaii Island, East Maui and the Northshore of Oahu.
And now, the Associated Press says drought conditions are taking a severe toll on the state’s domestic beef industry:
“Maui Cattle Co., a partnership of several local ranchers who supply grocers, including Whole Foods Market, has been particularly hard hit,” the news service reported on Oct. 6. “The company has been sending 18 animals to market each week, reducing its herd by 60 percent since June 2011. It has let more than half of its employees go and now has only six.”
Even worse, the AP reported that Maui Cattle Co.–so hard hit by drought conditions that have all but eliminated the grass the company famously uses to feed its herds, is considering giving the cattle a “high-protein byproduct” instead of grass. When the news service asked if this would hurt the company’s reputation, Maui Cattle Co. Managing Director Alex Franco said simply, “Our customers may consider this is a better option than having no cattle and no cattle industry.”
Talk about unhappy cows…