Watching and reporting about Hawaii politics and government.

4:30 p.m. Poet Merwin Says Humans Are Failing

W.S. Merwin, Maui resident and the nation’s poet laureate, told scientists and others working to protect Hawaii’s natural resources that they are doing work of “desperate importance” as species become extinct at a rapid rate:

“It’s irrevocable. You can’t put them back. You can’t say, ‘Whoops, sorry,’ and ‘I’ll fix that.’ You’re not ever going to fix it,” Merwin said while delivering the keynote address of this year’s Hawaii Conservation Conference.

Merwin said humans were failing not only other animals but themselves and the planet.

3:03 p.m. Micronesians in Hawaii

If you haven’t yet seen it, check out this Honolulu magazine article on Micronesians in the islands.

Great story by Michael Keany, and terrific photos by Elyse Butler and Matt Mallams.

Civil Beat’s recent articles on Micronesians can be viewed here (on discrimination) and here (on media portrayals).

11 a.m. Abercrombie Needs Cash

Civil Beat reports that Neil Abercrombie‘s latest campaign spending report is in the red.

To that end, the governor has a fundraiser set for Aug. 25 at the Hilton Hawaiian Village (cocktails begin at 5 p.m.).

It ain’t cheap, though: Tickets start at $300 and range all the way to $12,000 (referred to as the Pikake level).

10:24 a.m. Cops Seize 300 Pot Plants

Check out the latest in Neighbor Island government news:

More than 300 pot plants seized on Big Isle

Kauai Fire Chief: County chopper improves liability

Maui Tea Party head to be radio guest

Preliminary Big Isle legislative districts to be unveiled

Maui Realtors: Difficult to comply with sign rules

Study advises on dealing with Kauai drownings

Big Isle Council rethinks building code

8:12 a.m. DSCC Criticizes Case Poll

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee says Ed Case is not being honest with his recent poll numbers concerning the U.S. Senate race.

Read about it in our DC808 blog. Our gal in D.C. also has a follow up item on the matter.

Visionary on 2050 for CSG-WEST

Joel Kotkin is the keynote speaker at the Council of State Governments-WEST conference, which wraps up today at the Sheraton Waikiki.

Kotkin’s talk is titled “The Next Hundred Million: America in 2050.”

Kotkin, by the way, shared with Civil Beat in a recent Fact Check this observation:

“You want to see what America will look like in 10 years, go to California. If you want to see what it will look like in 30 years, look at Hawaii.”

Juror Questionnaires Coming Soon

The Hawaii State Judiciary, beginning Aug. 8, will mail 230,000 juror questionnaires to 85,000 Oahu residents, 50,000 on Maui, 70,000 on the Big Island and 25,000 on Kauai.

The questionnaires will be used to help select eligible jurors in 2012.

“Those who receive a questionnaire have 10 days to complete and return the questionnaire to the Jury Pool Office,” according to a press release. “Anyone who fails to respond may be penalized.”       

It’s Breastfeeding Week, Month

Neil Abercrombie, Peter Carlisle, Billy Kenoi, Alan Arakawa and Bernard Carvalho have proclaimed Aug. 1-7 Breastfeeding Week for the state and the counties.

For more information, click here and here.

Meeting: Stimulus

The Legislative Federal Economic Stimulus Program Oversight Commission is scheduled to meet this morning.

The agenda includes a presentation by the Department of Health.

Where’s Neil?

He’s on the Big Island:

Keaukaha Elementary School, Aquaponic System briefing, 8:10 a.m.          

Hilo Medical Center, Trauma Level 3 celebration, 9 a.m.

University of Hawaii-Hilo, Science and Technology Building dedication, 10:10 a.m.        

Imiloa Astronomy Center, Hawaii Island Chamber luncheon, 11:30 a.m.

East Hawaii State Office, office blessing, 2 p.m.

Catch up on previous coverage:

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