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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Saturday, January 9, 2010

Less time for same junk job is sensible

By David Shapiro

The president is gone and the Legislature is coming back as we start our 2010 "flASHback" on the week's news that amused and confused:

• President Obama returned to dodging political bullets in Washington after his Hawai'i holiday. He already misses the days when all he needed to get out of trouble was his sand wedge.

• Lawmakers will shorten the 2010 Hawai'i Legislature by a week. They learned from public school furloughs that it's possible to achieve the same poor results in less time.

• Local economists said their expert analysis shows the worst of the recession is over and we've begun a slow recovery. It's about time we got a good coin flip.

• Sen. Gary Hooser complained that certain bloggers, columnists and armchair pundits have made whipping boys of lieutenant governor candidates. That would be a waste of good lashing leather. Politicians who yearn to be LG come pre-whipped.

• Visiting radio host Rush Limbaugh said doctors at Queen's couldn't find anything wrong with his heart despite chest pains. The conservative icon was too chagrined to say so, but actually they couldn't find a heart.

• Patricia Hamamoto said her abrupt retirement as state superintendent of education was for personal reasons. Yeah, her personal sanity.

• School board Chairman Garrett Toguchi described Gov. Linda Lingle's second rejection of a plan to reduce teacher furlough days as "a devastating setback for public education." Almost as devastating as the original furlough plan he helped engineer.

• Only two Chinatown vendors showed up for a state workshop on how to control rats. Merchants were turned off when they heard the keynote speaker would be Chuck E. Cheese.

• Bales of fetid garbage are piling up at Campbell Industrial Park while a city contractor awaits permits to ship it to the Mainland. That's one way to coax the rats away from Chinatown.

• Big Island Councilman Kelly Greenwell withdrew his angry threat to resign if colleagues didn't support his resolution to legalize marijuana. His outburst was just the Kona Gold talking.

• A survey ranking the most religious states put Hawai'i below the national average. I tried to warn you that "ainokea" is no substitute for "amen."

And the quote of the week ... from first lady Michelle Obama when asked if she was ready to end her Hawai'i vacation: "Let's stay. We'll all stay. Are we all in? I'm trying to mount a coup." Rush Limbaugh supports her 100 percent.