Friday, October 07, 2005

The Strangle Hold

If the Democratic Party moves forward with their socialistic agendas, Hawaii's economic growth will be stifled. Hawaii’s isolation from the continental United States and a culture of complacent people allow the socialist agenda of the democratic state government to control all aspects of our lives. Examples of this is higher taxes in the form of G.E.T. increases; price controls on free enterprise with the Gas Cap; creating employee policies for employers by requiring paid breaks; and controlling the masses through Unions.

When I read both Mr. Walden’s article post of Hawaii Free Press at The Hawaii Reporter in conjunction with a recent article in our local Mainstream Media "The Honolulu Advertiser"(AKA the Democratic Party's Free publication paper) (read it below), it is clear that the local Democratic party will do almost anything to maintain their oligarchy on the state of Hawaii.

Mr. Walden points out
• Hawaii’s two airlines are maintained on the brink of bankruptcy with a high-ticket cost duopoly on inter-island air travel in order to extract tax revenues, plum jobs, campaign contributions and maintain the huge bureaucratic job trust known as the state Department of Transportation.
• Competing smaller airlines -- except Island Air, which was sold to its current owners by Aloha -- are sabotaged with poor landing rights and out-of-the-way terminal assignments in order to maintain the duopoly and keep the Democrat cash machine going. Watch what happens as newcomer Mesa Air tries to enter the inter-island market next year.



Ron Burkle, new bidder for Aloha Airlines has his own ties to the national Democratic party. I have posted the whole article here as I do not think you will have access to the article after 10/10/05.



By Rick Daysog
Advertiser Staff Writer

Burkle




When former President Bill Clinton needed to raise money, he often turned to his friend Ron Burkle.
Now, Aloha Airlines is doing the same.
The 52-year-old supermarket baron's investment firm has emerged as the prime mover behind the $100 million-plus plan to acquire Aloha Airlines and bring the state's second largest carrier out of bankruptcy by the end of the year.
While the deal was initiated by Burkle's partner, former professional football star Willie Gault, Burkle's Los Angeles-based investment firm, Yucaipa Companies, is putting up most of the money and will serve as Aloha's controlling shareholder.
Burkle, a billionaire, is head of Los Angeles-based Yucaipa Companies, which has taken part in more than $30 billion in mergers and acquisitions since its inception in 1986, including investments in well-known grocers such as Ralph's, Food 4 Less, Kroger and Fred Meyer.
Like Dole Food Co.'s David Murdock and former First Hawaiian Bank Chief Executive Walter Dods, Burkle is one of those rare breed of dealmakers who move between the business world and the political arena.
Besides Clinton, who serves as a senior adviser to Yucaipa, Burkle counts many of the world's leading financial and government figures among his friends and associates, including Warren Buffett, George Soros, Michael Milken and John Kerry, according to The Associated Press. In 2004, he served as vice chairman of John Kerry's presidential campaign.
He also lists pop star Sean "Diddy" Combs and hockey star Mario Lemieux among his business partners.
"He's an extensive mover and shaker in California," said Robert Stern, president of the nonpartisan Center for Governmental Studies in Los Angeles.
A spokesman for Burkle's company did not respond to inquiries. Aloha also declined response for this story.
Yucaipa's bid to purchase Aloha, which filed for bankruptcy protection in December, has attracted competition. A second Mainland group, which includes former Hawaiian Airlines Chief Executive Bruce Nobles, has emerged with a bid for the airline.
Burkle's political connections aren't likely to have any influence on the federal bankruptcy court, which has the final say on any buyout of the airline, but it's "the elephant in the room nobody is talking about," said Neal Milner, a political science professor at the University of Hawai'i.
Burkle's political connections will be an asset for Aloha when it deals with various regulatory agencies in Washington, D.C., Milner said.
"Given his business success, he clearly knows how Washington works and how to work with the various agencies," Milner said.
In many ways, Burkle's political cachet is closely tied to that of Clinton.
Burkle has hosted a number of star-studded fundraisers for Clinton at his 40-room Beverly Hills mansion, which was once owned by silent screen star Harold Lloyd.
He pledged millions to Clinton's effort to built a presidential library in Little Rock, Ark., and contributed $10,000 to Clinton's legal defense fund during the height of the Monica Lewinsky scandal.
Burkle and his family also were among the hundreds of Clinton donors and friends who stayed overnight at the Lincoln Bedroom at the White House during Clinton's presidency, according to a list published by the Washington Post.
Burkle also is a major supporter of other Democratic candidates.
Since 1992, Burkle, his ex-wife, Janet Burkle, and several Yucaipa executives have contributed more than $750,000 to more than a dozen Democratic candidates for Congress, according to Opensecrets.org, a Web site of the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics in Washington, D.C.
The contributions, which did not exceed legal limits, went to Democrats including Sens. Barbara Boxer of California, Christopher Dodd of Connecticut, Joseph Biden of Delaware and Barack Obama of Illinois.
During that same period, Yucaipa contributed more than $1.7 million in unregulated soft money to various Democratic committees, according to Open secrets.org.
Burkle, Yucaipa and its affiliated companies made more than $2 million in monetary and nonmonetary contributions to dozens of candidates and a host of ballot issues in Burkle's home state of California, according to campaign finance records kept by the California Secretary of State.
Those contributions included more $200,000 to former Gov. Gray Davis and $40,000 to a group that opposed Davis' 2003 recall.
Yucaipa also gave $100,000 to Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's California Recovery Team last year.
Burkle began his career in the grocery business doing odd jobs at a Stater Bros. supermarket in Claremont, Calif., which was managed by his father, according to a 1998 profile by The Associated Press.
In 1973, he dropped out of college to take an executive position with Stater Bros. and later joined his father in proposing buying out the chain.
Despite the support of Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway investment group, Burkle's offer was rejected and he and his father were fired, according to The Associated Press.
He founded Yucaipa in 1986 and went on to build the firm into one of the largest and most successful investors in the grocery business.
"In terms of credential and experience, this person is clearly a step above the type of buyer you'd expect" in Aloha Airlines, said UH's Milner


When I read the above article I see it as one of the best free publicity for Aloha and the Democratic Party. Compare that to Mr. Walden who points out that it sure looks like the democratic leaders are trying to control the life blood of Hawaii. Gas/oil business, the airlines, the tourist and cruise line industry, the construction industry, keeping the masses at a certain level and never allowing them opportunities for success, and with the unions controlling our harbors, we are in big trouble people.

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