Opinion Editorial: Moana: a view from Micronesia

moanaBy: Emelihter Kihleng - DEC 2016
Pohnpei Cinemas has been packed since Disney’s Moana opened on November 22 selling out more shows than the most recent Star Wars movie. I would know, as I’ve been to watch Moana twice, once on the Sunday morning of opening week and again this past Friday night. The film will have already made well over $100 million by the time this goes to print. It is no surprise that Moana is another “Disney Princess” blockbuster.
Pacific Islander academics were quick to criticize the film for the ways it continues to colonize our minds with manufactured feel good storylines and characters that are often culturally appropriated, and seek only to make Disney more money at the expense of our misrepresented indigenous Pacific cultures and peoples (scholars Teresia Teaiwa, Tēvita ʻŌ. Kaʻili and others have critiqued the film). They are right! Disney is a corporation that spends billions (yes, billions) of dollars on advertising alone; their main aim is to entertain and make a profit, not to be culturally sensitive. We in the Pacific are just as susceptible to Disney’s seduction as everyone else, and in the case of Moana, even more so because it is supposed to represent us.

Read more: Opinion Editorial: Moana: a view from Micronesia

Letter to the Editor : President Trump

DEC 2016

Dear Editor:
Were you as shocked as I was in knowing the outcome of the United States presidential election? The victory of Donald Trump over Hilary Clinton!
I had never monitored any United States elections as closely as the November 08, 2016. I followed it meticulously considering the character and moral values of this candidate running for the highest office in the United States of America as an outsider. By saying outsider because he has never held any position in the government but he is successful businessman as a billionaire. As many political experts pointed out, it was an unprecedented election in the history of the United States.
The most qualified candidate ever lost to the least qualified candidate. The winner of the election lost all three presidential debates. The polls were way off the predicted numbers. Most of his influential party members abandoned him in the final days of the campaign, he still managed to win. His campaign rhetoric was so nasty but he came out as the winner. Despite his victory, he was the first major party presidential candidate in modern history who did not file his tax returns.

Read more: Letter to the Editor : President Trump

Opinion Editorial: Asia’s taste for sea cucumbers roils South Pacific

MICHAEL FIELD, Contributing writer
Nikkei Asian Review
(reprinted with permission)
May 25, 2016
AUCKLAND, New Zealand -- A race to harvest one of the world's oddest looking marine delicacies is causing concern about environmental damage inflicted in the South Pacific.
Soaring demand for the sea cucumber, a seabed dwelling invertebrate also known as beche-de-mer and trepang, is driving record prices in China's luxury food market. One species, the Pacific sandfish, was selling recently in Hong Kong for $1,668 a kilo, while the Japanese spiky sea cucumber can go for $2,950 a kilo. Other species sell for between $15 and $385 a kilo, depending on size and condition.

sea cucumber

Read more: Opinion Editorial: Asia’s taste for sea cucumbers roils South Pacific