Tuesday, May 30, 2006

It Was the Best of Times…

Most in attendance at the Hawaii Republican convention, observed that it was the best ever -- with most of the presentations being inspired, authentic, and extemporaneous. And when there wasn’t programming, there wasn’t a lull for the lack of an engaging conversation or discussion to erupt. The good feeling and high spirits was palpable.

The major caveat was not to get overconfident and complacent of too certain a victory in the pivotal governor’s race, which the strategists hope this time will also have long coattails.

While much has been made about the overwhelming odds against the Republicans in the legislature and attempts to suppress and frustrate them in presenting alternative viewpoints, they seemed to relish their gadfly roles and rise to every occasion allowed them. And if that was the “worst,” they’re looking forward to even better times -- with an unmistakable mood of euphoria just thinking about the coming elections and prospects for sustained improvement.

The Governor has a way of making anything seem possible -- and if she says something, it must be true. And so as proof that things have changed greatly even without the “emerging Republican majority” in the legislature having manifested yet, the progress in the administration and management of key departments (in social services most notably other than education), are very encouraging. They seem to have turned around the whole human services paradigm in a single term! -- to where it may be a model for the rest of the nation. When did we ever hear/say that before?

The presentations and panel discussions were very lively and informed. I’m sure that in typical fashion, the Democrats will accuse us of all being actors hired by a public relations firm because they cannot accept that it could actually be authentic. That’s what we hear all the time about the Lingle Administration -- that all the good news is just the product of the best public relations manufacturing possible -- because that‘s what they would do to get those same “results.”

Perhaps we all need to act more cynical, dejected and dispirited for the Dems to be able to relate to people like them as credible. Having been in attendance at one, I was told that the televised differences in the spirit and mood of both, was a sharp contrast between everything that could go right, and everything that could go wrong. The tension and depression at the other was palpable -- even to people not normally sensitive to such nuances. At one, people were all smiles and good feeling; at the other, everybody was angry and determined to oppress all those not in conformity with their own dictates of moral (political) correctness.

It was not the “contact high” we had participating in a model of goodwill and civil discourse at the Sheraton. Reports would filter in about the unfolding debacle at the Hilton -- which seemed to announce that the mighty Democratic Party had fallen from any semblance of grace. They thanked the two people who stepped up to run in the governor’s race.

The new chairman said unconvincingly but hopefully at the end, that the Democrats have always banded together in the past after bitter fights -- and hoped this time would be the same. Maybe it’s different this time. But we have our own party to tend to -- and they have their work cut out for them, doing what they do best, blaming somebody else for actually doing something.


At May 31, 2006 10:17 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

Emailed comment:

"I agree, I came home from
the convention feeling wonderful. It was so relaxing to be with people who are interesting and very smart. I was thinking about the differences and I told my family that the best part of being a Republican for me is to be in the presence of such interesting individuals with new ideas who are willing to explore new ways of approaching problems.

At June 02, 2006 1:18 PM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

It’s always been about the people.

Ultimately, the proof of the effectiveness of any government or party, is whether it produces a better society; we just happen to be the pioneers in that unfolding reality as Republicans. The other guys are still filled with hatred, resentment and outrage -- and that is all they express and campaign upon, hoping there is still someone out there who has already forgotten what Hawaii was like on 9/11/01.

I think the great part of having Linda Lingle as governor, is that one can count on seeing and hearing an intelligent person on the media regularly as a constant reminder that we do live in a world of goodness and rationality. Otherwise, we’d have the same explanations of why government wasn’t working as it should -- or that those who reported that Hawaii (government) was at the bottom of some new ranking, didn’t know what they were talking about because this was Hawaii -- where all the rules of common sense did not apply.

That’s the kind of world we lived in back then. But once President Bush acted decisively to ensure the safety of travel and Americans being anywhere without the fear of attacks by tyrants and terrorists, the country, and then the world, was quick to turn around into the great prosperity and tranquility of these times. Hawaii, not coincidentally shot to the head of most lists once Linda Lingle became governor and began a success story of government in Hawaii. There’s a reason those things happen.

Just that feeling of confidence in one another to be full participants on the world stage -- rather than justifying ourselves as “losers and victims,” is one of the great transformations of anywhere, anytime. We needed an attitude adjustment. We needed a symbol that we were truly the best in the world -- who could speak with credibility and authority to and with the best in the world. We’re not just people from a backwater state who are entitled to maximum federal funding because everything was going wrong and the situation was hopeless.

We became a dysfunctional culture that rewarded failure. The more we failed, the more it was justified that the federal and state governments needed to spend more. How much we spent became the measure of success -- rather than what we accomplished, in measurable results. Under the old regimes, “responsibility” and “accountability” became forgotten, if not forbidden, words.

That we can recognize and choose good people to be our leaders is a statement about ourselves -- that the pleas of despair and defeatism, no longer rule the land -- or are even acceptable in our company. But then, I couldn’t be at two conventions at one time. I think the choices are pretty clear this coming election season -- and now that we know what good government and good people are like, there’s no going back.

We like going forward.

At June 03, 2006 7:47 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

Whether Republican or Democrat -- every elected official must represent the interests of ALL the people -- and not just those who supported them; that is their job -- for which they were elected to.

That means choosing not one over the other, but taking into account all the interests, and distilling their own best solution. Unfortunately in the too recent past, many politicians, along with the social climate, came to regard that being a famously partisan person, was the duty of a leader and the height of intelligent and sophisticated behavior. That is unfortunately still true in many hopelessly divided, sectarian despotisms -- where the ruling tactic is to set one group against another in perpetual warfare so they cannot unite and overthrow their real oppressors -- the powers that be, who always wish to remain so. Critical to this objective is the work of an information agency to convince every faction of the imminent danger from every other.

George Orwell revealed the machinations of such an agency -- the Ministry of Truth, or minitrue, in his revelationary novel, 1984. The culmination of their efforts, was the five-minute hate everyone would go into on cue. Most people had no idea what made them act that way, but they could not resist. That was their conditioning, their programming, the constant messages they received about the world -- and could know no other.

It doesn’t matter how many half-truths one knows -- and thinks one knows it all; the simple truth lies in the whole truth, which is not many, but one. And that is the one thing, the agencies of “truth” don’t want us to know -- and that is that this partisanship, this fragmenting, this dividing of society, is the only problem. And so the propagandists work tirelessly to create such divisions, deceptions and manipulations that prevent clarity and thus encourage one to let others do their thinking for them.

That is how the newspapers and mass media saw their roles -- to do the thinking and speaking for the people -- because they did not have the capabilities to speak for themselves, as well as fend off all the assaults against their sensibilities. But then there came a revolution -- not of people killed and houses burned, but in the many ways people could relate to one another. Predictably, it horrified those who believed they had a perpetual monopoly to control others by granting and/or withholding information. Their instinctive reaction was that there was something horribly wrong with the notion that one should serve ALL the people; it had never been done -- and we could only repeat what had been done before -- and never create a new reality, new possibilities, “a new beginning.”

At June 04, 2006 6:06 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

June 4th, as every dutiful Republican in Hawaii is reminded, is Linda Lingle’s birthday.

The only question is, “One hundred years from now, will we still be celebrating her birthday?”

Happy Birthday, Governor!

“You’re Another Year Better.”

At June 04, 2006 6:08 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

I’ve always thought that that was her greatest contribution to Hawaii:

That she was a very visible, accessible, living example of someone who is always growing, improving, and wanting the best for EVERYONE.

That’s why she should be the governor.

At June 05, 2006 10:26 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...




On behalf of the Hawai'i Republican Party, I would like to thank the hundreds of delegates and guests who participated in the Hawai'i State Republican Party Convention last weekend, one of the most well-attended conventions we've seen.

The unity and energy at the convention were contagious, and we could not have done it without the many volunteers who put on a well-organized event. To the Sheraton Waikiki Hotel, we say thank you once again for your professionalism and attention to detail.

I would also like to congratulate Mike McCartney on his election as party chairman for the Democratic Party of Hawai'i. This election will be about the future of Hawai'i and the leaders who will guide us. I look forward to open and honest debates with Mr. McCartney.

The two major-party conventions this past weekend demonstrated the importance of having citizens involved in politics and taking time to know the issues and the candidates. I can assure you the Hawai'i Republican Party will do its share to offer candidates who will give the voters a clear choice on election day, and we will continue to work hard to ensure a strong two-party system in Hawai'i.

Sam Aiona
Chairman, Hawai'i Republican Party


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