Front Desk

Wake-up, Hawaiians

Maybe it's island fever or too many years in an idyllic climate, but the residents of Hawaii are nuts. A recent survey for the Hawaii Tourism Authority showed that three-fourths of residents don't want any more hotels built in the state. Paradoxically, about the same number of people believe the state's tourism industry brings more benefits than problems. So what is it, folks: Is tourism a good thing or a bad thing?

They had better conclude that a healthy tourism industry—and the additional resort development it brings—is what the state needs. After all, there aren't many economic alternatives, given that agriculture is no longer a dominant industry on the islands and auto manufacturers aren't clamoring to build factories on Oahu. And, by contrast, tourism is a clean business that generates wheelbarrows full of tax revenues and creates thousands of stable, good paying jobs with advancement opportunities.

Wake-up, Hawaiians.

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