Not long ago, you had to come up with a good reason why your product or service wasn’t doing well — economic downturn, change in the luxury market, decline in spotted trout populations, or the like — but in the last few years, the blame industry has run dry, and it’s all the fault of those young whippersnappers, the millennials. Millennials are killing the paper napkin industry, millennials are killing the diamond market, millennials are killing the housing market.
When reading the news, there is a perception that we are a nation more divided than ever. There are problems with that perception. There was a serious division in 1862 that took some difficult years to resolve and some of those attitudes still linger. More recently, but just barely within my memory, were the McCarthy hearings of the early ’50s. In between there were some horrible times that we tend to forget and it would be pointless to revive them.
Hotel occupancy on this island is now over 80 percent with room rates exceeding $200 per night. To institute a ban or additional oversight by the county of vacation rentals in private homes invites a decline in tourism, which is the economic life blood of our island.
A friendly reminder, the mass of floating plastic north and east of the Hawaiian islands is increasing, covering an estimated area twice the size of the state of Texas, and weighing grossly estimated at 7 million tons. It is increasing at an exponential rate now due to steadily increasing production rates of all plastics by industry. That is the bad news.