The death of democracy – and 3 action steps to take NOW at the local level

No time for chit chat – For those interested in personal stuff such as pictures of my family or my dog Maximus Aurelius “Max”, please scroll down to the bottom.  If you want to know about me, you can visit

Frankly, there are too many bad things happening and too many things each of us need to do NOW to make meaningful change happen. The planet is burning and people are dying.

Please take the time to “click-through” the below links, read and take action. The change we need will happen only when we collectively take ownership and responsibility for our government.

“If you do not take an interest in the affairs of your government, then you are doomed to live under the rule of fools.” Plato

International – Waiting for the other shoe to drop: This past Friday President Trump ordered the assassination of a high ranking representative of an independent sovereign nation (Iran). I get it that General Qassem Soleimani was a very bad actor, but assassination is a war crime as defined by many international agreements. A U.S. executive order has also been in place since 1976 forbidding the U.S. from carrying out political assassinations. READ Was the drone attack on Iranian general an assassination?  President Trump needs to be removed from office by whatever legal means possible, as soon as is possible.

National – A deep dive into the death of western democracies  Read: This is how a society dies by Umair Haque The reading is a bit dense but is thought-provoking and worth the time.

“People who are made to live right at the edge must battle each other for self-preservationSuch a society has to eat through whatever public goods and social systems it has, just to survive…Society melts down…, as ever-increasing poverty brings hate, violence, fear, and rage with it. Trust erodes, democracy corrodes, social bonds are torn apart, and the only norms left are Darwinian-fascist ones: the strong survive, and the weak must perish…”

Think global and act local – This is the only real way to maintain sanity and hope.  We must fight back and WIN.  The reason I write and send out these emails is that I believe we here in Hawaii can win and set an example for the rest of the world – no hyperbole – no exaggeration.  But it takes work and it takes all of us chipping in. Here are three things I need to ask your help with today – PLEASE

  1. Oahu friends – Join FACE, RaiseUP, PHI, Living Wage Hawaii and many others at 4:30pm this Wednesday, January 8th at the State Capitol Rotunda in support of increasing Hawaii’s minimum wage to $17 per hour.  PLEASE TAKE THE TIME – YOUR PHYSICAL PRESENCE IS IMPORTANT Read more at Raise Up Hawaii
  2. Big Island Ohana – Ditto in support of over-riding Mayor Kim’s veto of Bill 101 banning herbicides on County property!  Please take the time to physically be there @ 9am on Wednesday, January 8th, in the Hilo Chambers. More info on Bill 101 and the current status is HERE at Greener Hawaii
  3. Kauai friends and family – Please comment on the application for a long-term lease (65 years) of the waters from Wai`ale`ale and Waikoko Streams, all comments must be filed by midnight Tuesday, January 7, 2020.  Submit comments to DLNR’s Ian Hirokawa and copies to SSFM International, Inc. (Consultant),; and Kaua’i Island Utility Cooperative (Applicant),  There has never been an EIS for the Wai`ale`ale and Waikoko (Blue hole) diversions. When water is diverted for commercial use from streams, HRS 171-58 requires and EIS and DLNR should accept nothing less from Kauai Island Utility Coop.  READ Draft EA HERE Bottom line for me: The water taken must be limited to the minimum needed by KIUC, the lease period should not exceed 10-year increments AND sufficient water must always remain in the stream to maintain the ecological health of the stream. Main point – Please demand a full Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) be completed!

FINALLY – After you have done your reading and taken the action steps listed above – Please think about the upcoming 2020 elections from a local state and county perspective.  We need qualified candidates who support a living wage, who know the importance of protecting our streams, and who will put people and the planet first. Interested candidates should Contact the HAPA Kuleana Academy (2020 dates are forthcoming) and consider applying for the next session.  Candidates are also welcome to contact me directly if they have questions or need more information.

We also need to register our friends and family to vote which you can easily do HERE

Read from my blog – “Turning Marchers Into Voters”

Please know that I get that the above is a lot to digest in a single email and that 24 hours or even 48 hours is a short fuse and more notice would be much better.  I get it…and am doing the best I can.  So please, just do the same if you can – hang in there with me and let’s do this.

Sincerely yours,

Gary Hooser

NOTE: If you receive this email from a friend and are not on my regular email list – Please consider subscribing HERE.

About garyhooser

This blog represents my thoughts as an individual person and does not represent the official position of any organization I may be affiliated with. I presently serve as volunteer President of the Hawaii Alliance for Progressive Action (H.A.P.A.) I am the former Vice-Chair of the Democratic Party of Hawaii. In another past life, I was an elected member of the Kauai County Council, a Hawaii State Senator, and Majority Leader, and the Director of Environmental Quality Control for the State of Hawaii - in an even earlier incarnation I was an entrepreneur and small business owner. Yes, I am one of the luckiest guys on the planet. Please visit my website AND sign up for my newsletter (unlike any email newsletter you have ever gotten, of that I am sure) - “Come to the edge.” “We can’t. We’re afraid.” “Come to the edge.” “We can’t. We will fall!” “Come to the edge.” And they came. And he pushed them. And they flew. - Christopher Logue (b.1926)
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1 Response to The death of democracy – and 3 action steps to take NOW at the local level

  1. DianeFell says:

    Thank you for sharing this information. Pesticides should be banned from use on all the islands on county land. Our water must be protected from pesticides and other dangerous waste.

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