Friday, September 13, 2019

Telescope controversy continues...

and spills into California...

Attorney Michael Green is representing a couple that’s threatening to sue people who are spreading rumors that Gov. Ige has financial ties to the Thirty Meter Telescope.

The Governor strongly denies the online allegations. Social media posts claim documents show that Gov. Ige has financial ties to TMT, and that amounts to bribery and a conflict of interest. However it’s unclear who started the allegations.

TMT paid $3 million to Private Security Group run by Charles Long since 2015 for security at its construction site at Mauna Kea.

Long’s wife, Melanie, is the owner of the property management company for Ige’s personal home. Green says the rumors could lead to a defamation lawsuit and he believes anger over Mauna Kea has become vicious.

“Protest, everyone has a right to do that, but don’t be so vile so vicious to do something to this husband and his wife and their family,” said Green, Long’s attorney. The high profile attorney does not represent the Ige’s...

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Nearly a week after state crews used a saw to cut through the door of an illegal structure at a Mauna Kea protest camp, Governor Ige has accused activists of baiting law enforcement crews with the Hawaiian flag that had been affixed to the building.

Before the illegal structure was removed from Mauna Kea last Friday, an officer used the saw to cut through a boarded up door to make sure no one was inside. In doing so, he also cut through a Hawaiian flag that was affixed to the door.

The action quickly grew condemnation from protesters, who said the action amounted to desecration.

TMT opposition leader, Andre Perez, says the image incited anger and could have easily been avoided if law enforcement cut around the flag.

“They consciously chose to cut through the middle of the flag and I find that an egregious act of disrespect to Hawaiian people every where,” he said.

In a social media post published on Thursday, Gov. Ige said that the state’s law enforcement officers ‘serve proudly under the state flag’ and blamed activists for the incident...

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The state Department of Land and Natural Resources is investigating how the occupation of Maunakea Access Road might be harming a rare native Hawaiian plant and several other endangered species.

In particular, the DLNR’s Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement is concerned about the health of the ‘anunu vine (also known as the alpine bur cucumber or largeleaf bur cucumber), a particularly uncommon flowering plant only found on the Big Island. Investigators are determining whether specimens of the vine were possibly destroyed at Pu‘u Huluhulu, where the U.S. Army had attempted to reintroduce the plant...

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Native Hawaiian opponents of a giant telescope planned for Hawaii’s tallest mountain plan to protest outside the California home of one of the observatory’s major backers.

The opponents plan to gather outside the Redwood City home of Intel co-founder Gordon Moore and his wife today. The couple’s foundation has pledged $250 million toward the $1.4 billion Thirty Meter Telescope.

Protesters have occupied a road to Mauna Kea’s summit since mid-July to block construction. They say building a new telescope there will further desecrate a sacred place that already hosts 13 observatories.

Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation spokeswoman Holly Potter says the foundation recognizes strong feelings in support and opposition to the telescope. She says the foundation respects the right of all to express their points of view. She asks that the Moores be respected as private citizens...

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