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Editor’s note: For Hawaii’s Aug. 9 primary, Civil Beat asked candidates to answer some questions.
The following came from Alain Schiller, a Libertarian candidate for state senator for District 4. There are also two Democratic candidates, Malama Solomon and Lorraine Inouye.
District 4 covers the northern portion of the Big Island.
Name: Alain Schiller
Office: State Senate, District 4
Profession: Massage therapist
Education: One year in French law school.
Community organizations: Friends with Alain 4 Liberty
1. Why are you running for the Hawaii Legislature?
I was asked to run for State Senate in my District 4 by the Libertarian Party Chairperson for Hawaii (Big Island). I don’t like politics in general and I don’t trust the two-party system. They both answer to the corporate interest rather than the well being of the people at large. They are two distinct ways to get us to the same place and I see catastrophe as the end result. The first time I voted in my life was for Ron Paul in the 2012 presidential primary. The Libertarian philosophy and agenda fit my belief. We need to protect self determination and individual responsibility. The pursuit of liberty is a must for a free country. I believe in a smaller government, that money should not be a determinant factor in promoting a candidate and should be kept out of politics, I believe in peaceful means of action, in standing on principles rather than politically correct agendas. Those are few of the reasons I choose to help and serve under the Libertarian ticket.
2. Are you satisfied with the current plans to pay for the state’s unfunded liabilities? If not, how would you propose to meet pension and health obligations for public workers?
I reserve my reply for a later time when when I will be more informed about this issue.
3. Local officials and advocates have worked to address homelessness for years, yet the crisis is growing. What proposals do you have for this complicated issue?
Cheap housings, like small movable houses or caravan villages, should be created by the state which could create new jobs allowing the non-working population to be put to work in exchange for those temporary housings for those willing to become active and productive rather than to be satisfied with entitlement benefits. Only people willing to accept those jobs should be helped with cheap and affordable housing.
4. Where do you stand on labeling genetically engineered food and pesticide regulation? Are these public safety issues, or are the dangers exaggerated?
I strongly favor labeling genetically engineered food. We the people have a right to be informed and be the judge of what we are willing to put in our body as far as food is concerned. It is a public safety issue indeed. We need to have more research done by non-interested parties on genetically engineered food. I do not believe that all GMO might be a health issue but until real science proves it, people need to have their right to choose protected by the law. No new experimentation in open fields should be permitted in Hawaii. Also, the fact that in many cases the local farmers may be forced to buy their seeds from a corporate monopoly is rather damaging to their God’s given right to grow their own food. I oppose patenting natural food seeds, since when all farming will be contaminated with GMO,the farmers will not have any more choice but to buy from the monopoly.
5. Hawaii’s cost of living is the highest in the country by many indicators. What can really be done to make things like housing, food and transportation less expensive?
Housing and rents are expensive because the cost of building is so high. We need to encourage competition in the shipping industry. A monopoly as we have now, will keep the high cost of shipping building materials and food supplies to our islands.
6. Would you support using liquified natural gas as part of the state’s energy sources? And how can we improve the electrical distribution system so more renewable energy can be utilized to bring costs down?
Hawaii should be a leader nationwide in clean and renewable energy. Our volcanic islands have a lot of thermal and natural gas potential. If gas could be harvested from the volcano in a clean and efficient way without causing harm to the eco-system, I would favor research. Yet no fracking should be done on our lands. Also the vast non-productive lava fields should be used to build large solar farms. Hawaii should be the first state where all vehicles are electric. We could then attract ecologic-minded tourism to the only state with no man-made pollution.
7. Hawaii’s public records law mandates that public records be made available whenever possible. Yet many citizens are unable to afford the costs that state and local government agencies impose.Would you support eliminating search and redaction charges and making records free to the public except for basic copying costs?
Public records should be provided free to the public at minimal cost to cover basic copying costs. On line should be free.
8. Are you satisfied with the way Hawaii’s public school system is run? How can it be run better?
We need to pay our school teachers better, we need to reward them when accomplishing success with their students and give them back the tools to teach our children self determination and positive critical thinking, rather than indoctrinate them with politically correct curriculum. Education is a family duty but “Common Core” is a set of nationalized standards, which are the first steps toward a national curriculum, where the federal government has complete control over what children are taught in school. That needs to stop. Take the government out of education and of the private life of its citizen. That will start with our children and the school system.
9. There is a desire to grow the economy through new development yet also a need to protect our limited environmental resources. How would you balance these competing interests?
Create and give tax incentives to research centers for new technologies to extract clean thermal energy from the volcano and develop new types of solar industries, and encouraging a growing fleet of electric vehicles to become soon the first all-electric-cars state in America.
10. What other important issue would you like to discuss here?
The protection of Common Law civil unions rights for gay couple and the protection of Religious Rights and liberty of conscience for people of faith.
Encourage home birth and protect the legal statute of our midwives.
Legalize marijuana and create cannabis oil industry for medical use. Develop hemp manufacturing industries.
Reduce the size of our state government.