Thursday, March 19, 2009


Kauai March 18 press conference on Superferry shutdown

by Larry Geller

Throughout the short life of the Superferry’s run in Hawaii there have been deep divisions between islands. There’s no need to re-hash all the issues here. No matter what I say, there will be emotional opposition to it.

For now, in the spirit of assisting an eventual understanding, I’d just like to present the video that was made of yesterday’s press conference on Kauai. It’s just under 12 minutes.

Title: Kauai press conference on Superferry shutdown

This video was made by Koohan Paik, and could be a closing chapter to the book she co-wrote, The Superferry Chronicles, if only one could really mix media.

Speaking of closing chapters, Brad Parsons, who was one of the few who foresaw the reasoning expressed by justices in their recent Supreme Court ruling, is thinking of wrapping up his “unofficial”website. I put that in quotes, because it was really one of the best places to find information that should have been “official.”

I’ll snip one paragraph from Brad’s recent post, again, in the hopes it will lead to understanding:

This blog was a research project to actualize the phrase, "Ye shall seek the truth, and the truth shall make you free." Some of you may recognize where that phrase is used and comes from. I also wanted to back up the people on Kaua'i who intuitively knew right from wrong even if they were a couple years ahead of the official interpretation of the "law." Personally, I viewed it as a disgrace the the Governor would threaten mothers and children with violence when they were just standing up for righteousness and what the law should be, what our government is suppose to be founded upon. To this day I believe the Governor owes a number of individuals and the people of Kaua'i a personal apology.

I don’t expect our arrogant governor to offer that apology any time soon, but it would be a healing gesture. I also don’t expect that many people will move from their hardened positions on the Superferry and become sympathetic to its impact on Kauai and its people.

Perhaps there will be an interisland ferry one day, after an EIS is completed, operated either by the state or a private company, and sized appropriately to the task. The book is not closed on this story quite yet, though it’s never too early to get started doing things right. The Court decision simply reaffirms the correct path.

We can fight over the ghost of the Superferry, or we can start anew.

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Yes, it's time to start anew. The sustainable ferry of the future in Hawaii will have half the engine power of the Alaka'i. It will transport only a few commercial vehicles and no personal use vehicles. Capacity of 400 people would be plenty, Alaka'i rarely got up to that number. It would go a little slower. There might be 2 to 4 of them. And why not the state own them? In Washington state and Alaska state the states own their ferries. Those are the two most comparable locations to Hawaii. The state should own the ferries here. That's my idea on anew.

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