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Capitalism and Settler Colonialism in

Honolulus Construction Boom
Oahu has reached kind of a tipping point in terms of our development, said
Anthony Aalto, head of the Oahu chapter of the Sierra Club. The organization is
spearheading a lawsuit contesting the state Land Use Commission's decision to
allow the project to proceed.

We now have the most congested freeways in the nation," he said. "We have
already paved over 50 percent of our best farmland. We cannot continue
developing as we have until now. (Hofschneider, 2013)

We practice and perpetuate Hawaiian cultural traditions and respect our genealogical
connection to the !ina (land); this includes Kleana and homestead and landholders.
We respect our ancestors, our iwi kupuna (bones), and the traditional and customary
rights of Native Hawaiians, the indigenous people of this land.

We believe that the natural environment of Koolau Loa, as well as the rest of
Hawaii, holds the resources to provide a reliable food source for its people. But
sustainability can only be achieved with the spirit of mlama !ina (care of the land),
and without excessive development. (Aloha Aina No Koolau Loa Facebook)
On a practical level: How can we fundamentally challenge
the overdevelopment and corporate exploitation of
Hawaii, by working towards a socially conscious
multiethnic movement rooted in a sense of place and
history that recognizes varying claims to land and

On a theoretical level: How can we insert the issue of
occupation and decolonization into the settler social
imaginary and put critiques of capitalist and settler
colonial violence in conversation with each other, without
losing sense of the particularity of positionality within the
context of occupation and colonization?
Settler Colonialism
Patrick Wolfe: Settler invasion is a structure not an event
Logic of Elimination with negative and positive
dimensions; destroying and replacing
Through the violence of dispossession, families priced out of
Through discursive elimination: limiting discourse to an intra-settler
discussion and neglectingor actively seekingto erase native
claims to land and sovereignty
Creates new spaces for settlers, in the image of American society
Local Identity
Naturalizes settler colonialism in Hawaii
Urbanization and Capitalist Expansion
Creative Destruction
urbanization has played a crucial role in the absorption of
capital surpluses but at the price of creative destruction
that entails the dispossession of the urban masses of any
right to the city whatsoever. (David Harvey)
For the settlers, Indigenous peoples are in the way and,
in the destruction of Indigenous peoples, Indigenous
communities, and over time and through law and policy,
Indigenous peoples claims to land under settler regimes,
land is recast as property and as a resource. Indigenous
peoples must be erased, must be made into
ghosts. (Tuck and Yang, 6)
Paradoxical Space
Who is Kakaako for?
Real workforce housing is for essential workersIn
Honolulu, the median household salary for 15 essential
worker occupations is only $48,000 (assuming 1.5
workers per household). Such households would qualify
for HUDs low-income or moderate-income housing
units priced under $215,000. But HCDAs figures show 92
percent of units in its pipeline are priced above Honolulus
medianby definition not affordable to half of us.
(Moriwaki and Nunies, 2014)
Neoliberal Hegemony
Our projects are funded approximately 98 percent, by the
returns from the endowment fund; so the endowment fund
produces returns through activities like renting space,
developing real estate, and we also have a global
portfolio, so that Pauahis money is put to work around the
world to earn money to support the mission of
Kamehameha Schools Elizabeth Hokada
I think those who are able to go to the school and benefit
from it are going to be the beneficiaries because they are
going to be able to afford it, and twenty years ago they
wouldnt have been able to afford it. Audience member
Save Our Kakaako: Aloha "ina