New Milestone For Hawaii! How Does Your State Measure Up?

August 22, 2013

Hat-tip Sam Slom of Smart Business Hawaii:

Hawaii now spends more on welfare & subsidies than it does on public education!

Hawaii is number one nationally in providing generous welfare benefits by a wide margin. As predicted years ago, Hawaii now spends more on welfare ($2.75 BILLION annually) and subsidies than it does on public education. That’s not right. A mother of two children, ages 1 and 4, in Hawaii receives nearly $49,000 in welfare benefits, and it is tax free. The rest of us would need to have a job that paid $60,000 a year to get the equivalent salary.

According to the Cato Institute the federal government funds 126 separate programs targeted towards low-income people, 72 of which provide either cash or in-kind benefits to individuals. Of course not, no individual or family gets benefits from all 72 programs, but many do get aid from a number of them at any point in time. And the federal government goes out of its way to make sure anyone on any federal program knows what other programs are available to them.

Looking at benefits paid to a family of 3 (single mother, 2 children) receiving benefits in New York including Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, Medicaid, food stamps, WIC, public housing, utility assistance and free commodities (like milk and cheese) would have a package of benefits worth $38,004, the seventh-highest in the nation. Okay, doesn’t sound so excessive, but remember this income is tax-free. A wage-earner in New York would need to earn $21/hour to be better off than they would be on welfare.

The Cato study found that the wage-equivalent value of benefits for a mother and two children ranged from a high of $60,590 in Hawaii to a low of $11,150 in Idaho. In 33 states and the District of Columbia, welfare pays more than an $8-an-hour job. In 12 states and DC, the welfare package is more generous than a $15-an-hour job.

There are certainly people who need and deserve a hand up. I met one at the airport yesterday -a single father who had been hit by a drunk driver over 2 months ago, wiping out half of his foot. He can’t work and still faces multiple surgeries. Our veterans could be treated better and quicker if the federal government did not squander funds on keeping able-bodied people dependent on government hand-outs. If you pay people more not to work than they can earn by working, many will choose not to work.

obama rodeo clown

But oh, I forgot Obama promises not to stop working on job creation from now till the end of his term -killing them through regulations, taxes, Obamacare subsidies to Congress, waivers to the IRS, union buddies and big donors. Just ask the Missouri State rodeo clown.

Aloha, Mikie ~just a blogger (fightin’ like a girl)

Hawaii U.S. Senate Seat Race & The Typical Lefty News Slant

September 24, 2012

I nearly spewed my coffee this morning reading our paper’s rendition of the candidate forum held yesterday for Hawaii’s opening U.S. Senate seat.

Following is my rebuttal to the article in our morning paper:

Reporting Critique on Candidate Forum

The candidate forum was very well attended considering its Sunday afternoon venue on a beautiful West Hawaii day. But I feel compelled since I was in the audience to make a couple quick comments regarding the forum as reported in West Hawaii Today by Carolyn Lucas-Zenk.

She nailed the subhead, ‘HIRONO A NO-SHOW’ accurately characterizing Mazie’s overall performance in this very important race for U.S. Senator. The headline however, “Lingle attempts to woo W. Hawaii voters at forum” makes it sound like she missed the mark when that certainly was not the case.

I didn’t like everything Lingle did in her eight years as governor, but I was happy to have the teacher furloughs clarified since she’s taken heat for the furlough Friday fiasco since 2009. But we didn’t learn the truth about the furloughs directly from Lingle yesterday so much as her mention of the latest issue of Honolulu Magazine calling out Hirono’s misleading campaign video laying blame for Furlough Fridays entirely on Lingle. The article states the union (HSTA) and the DOE themselves chose to cut 17 instructional days -all Fridays (presumably to most negatively impact students and parents) when Lingle wanted planning and waiver days cut. Additionally, Lingle secured a $10 million line of credit from local banks trying to avoid the furloughs, but the union and teachers were firmly dug in and so we got Furlough Fridays.

Lastly, had you not been at the forum you would surmise from Lucas-Zenk’s reporting that when elected Lingle would be calling for a constitutional amendment banning abortion when in fact Lingle (who is pro-choice) made it clear she believed that would never happen and that social issues like ‘who can marry who and abortion’ were distractions when there were far more critical issues like the economy and national security needing our full attention.

All I can say is make sure you attend the next Lingle/Hirono forum October 10th in Waimea and see for yourselves who we need most in the Senate.


Michelle “Mikie” Kerr

Aloha, Mikie ~just a blogger (fightin’ like a girl)

Tango May Be To Buenos Aires What Hula Is To Hawaii

February 7, 2012

Saw this cool schematic on a sidewalk while wandering around looking for a place to eat last night in the neighborhood (Palermo Soho) we are staying.

And according to my trusty Spanish translation website –, it literally means “Sidewalk of Tango“. But I can tell you, it will take a little more than a few footprints on concrete to learn the Tango! We saw a couple demonstrating a few steps today at Plaza Dorrego in San Telmo. It is beautiful and so sexy, and I am forever and completely amazed that the women wear spiked heels to dance in – and in this particular situation, on a very uneven cobblestone street.


Excuse the blurriness- they're in motion!

Tango may be to Buenos Aires something like what Hula is to Hawaii at least in the old days. Remember the old Kodak Hula show in Kapiolani Park? They did it for the tourists everyday just like what we saw in Plaza Dorrego today!

Aloha, Mikie

Honokohau Parking Gone Wild!

May 1, 2010

Did you say, ‘Cheerleaders Gone Wild’? Oh no, that’s something else and a lot more fun. This is dead serious. Here’s an update on the proposed fees at the Honokohau Harbor in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii.

In my Silence is Consent post, I mentioned the State of Hawaii, like all over-extended entitlement and public-employee sugar daddy states in the country, are up against the wall finding the till empty and fewer and fewer people or entities they can squeeze more money out of.

But Hawaii has been at this a long time and they are desperate and inventive, so the DLNR (Dept of Land & Natural Resources) has come up with parking fees at Honokohau Harbor.

The powers that be in Hawaii are in Honolulu -5 islands NW of the Big Island (counting the uninhabited island of Kaho’olawe). So even though you know what (rhymes with spit . . . ;>) flows downhill, it’s a lot easier to impose fines and take the heat from a distance. How ridiculous are the proposed fees. Take a look:

  • 40¢/hour for general public with no time limit (but are you going to go for a couple of fish tacos at $2.50 a pop and pay 40¢/hour to park? Probably not.
  • $1.00/day not to exceed $25/month for crew of the boats -if they’re willing to walk between a block and 4 blocks away from the boats!
  • $90/month for crew who wish to park next to their boats
  • $90/month for employees (directly impacting business owners who cannot pass this on to their workers)
  • $25/month stickers/boat (limited to two) to park anywhere in the harbor
  • $10/for a 24-hour pass for slip owners to have for guests (paying customers!)

Ed Underwood, administrator of the Dept. of Boating and Ocean Recreation (DOBOR) strongly believes the parking fees can and should be implemented quickly to solve the Dept’s $200,000 deficit.

THE BOTTOM LINE – Ed Underwood and (DOBOR) does not believe that the Parking Fee will be a burden on harbor users, business owners, tourists or anyone else that uses the harbor. If we are to change their minds it has to be in this area.

If you are concerned about the steep and sudden fees soon to be imposed on the harbor please get involved. You can do it here with this simple/sample letter with email addresses of the key people.

Aloha, Mikie

Remember in November!

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