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Blount Report: Affairs in Hawaii

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              HAWAIIAN  ISLANDS.	795

employed, liquor was allowed to run in a tide, promises of office were given, intimidation was resorted to, 
and in one district a number of soldiers were taken up to outvote the opposition candidate, while in another 
the voting lists were openly tampered with.
With a Legislature composed of such materials, and obtained by such means, it is not surprising that the 
right of free speech was cut off, and that a reckless disregard for the rights of capital and brains reigned 
supreme.
The session lasted from April 30 to October 16-a period of 170 days. The results were an appropriation 
bill of somewhat over four and a hull' millions of dollars, the income of the country being about two 
millions. A loan bill was passed authorizing the Government to borrow $2,000,000, the affair to be 
managed by a syndicate in London. A free-liquor bill had been passed in the Legislature of 1884, 
and that of 1886 gave an opium bill, which was so framed that bribery could be freely used to obtain 
the license. The results of this bill will be seen later on. Then there was an army bill, authorizing the 
expenditure of a very large sum of money, and creating generals, colonels, intelligence officers, and no 
end of frippery. The buying and lit ting out of a man-of-war was authorized, and the vote for foreign 
missions was still further increased. One thing was made clear, during the session, and that was the 
ministerial view of the constitution. In open debate the question was argued: "Where lies, or should 
lie, the preponderating, the actual ruling power*" One of the independent members maintained "In 
the legislature;" the ministry held "In the crown;" and the latter theory was acted upon.
Great dissatisfaction was felt at the close of the Legislature; but matters were not so bad yet as to 
cause all men to unite. What the Government intended to do soon o began to be developed. An 
embassy, under charge of John E. Bush, was sent at great expense to Samoa. A large sum of money 
was expended over festivities in honor of the King's birthday. The Explorer (re-named the 
Kaimiloa)-a vessel totally unstated for the purpose - was purchased by the Government for 
$20,000, and some $50,000 or $60,000 were expended in turning her into a man-of-war. The crew 
was largely made up of boys from the Reformatory School, and their conduct, together with, that of 
some of the officers, created a perfect scandal. On the evening before the day appointed for the sailing 
of the vessel a mutiny broke out, and several of the officers were summarily dismissed. Meantime, 
money was very scarce, the loan was bungled, and though the money had been subscribed in 
England, it was not forthcoming in Hawaii. The roads all over the group were in a terrible condition; 
the harbor had not been dredged for months, no funds being forthcoming for the purpose; the 
landings were neglected and Government indebtedness was not liquidated.
So bad had things become that men sot seriously to work to right them, and early ill the present year a 
number of gentlemen in Honolulu and on the other islands began to consider the boat means for 
putting an end to the then state of affairs, and placing the Government of the country on a basis 
which should for the future do away with the system of corruption and fraud which had ruled so 
long. For this purpose arms were imported, and every preparation made beforehand. The organ-
ization took the name of the Hawaiian League, and had enrolled among its members some of the 
weightiest men in the city.
The agitation was progressing favorably, when a weapon was put into the hands of the patriotic party 
which served to unite the whole population as one man against the regime under which such iniquities 
could be perpetrated.
We nave spoken above of the opium law which was passed in the Legislature of 1886, and which had 
received the King's signature in spite of the most vigorous protests from all classes of the 
community. The bill provided that a license for the sale of opium, at the rate of $30,000 per annum, 
should be given to whomsoever the minister of the interior might choose.
The facts in the matter, furnished on undeniable authority, were published in the Hawaiian Gazette of 
May 17, and from that paper we quote. The paper said:
"Early in November, 1886, one Junius Kaae, heretofore conspicuous for nothing except being a 
'palace hanger-on' (since promoted to the office of 'register of deeds), went to a Chinese rice-planter 
named Aki and asked him if he did not want the opium license. Aki said he did. Kaae then informed 
him that he could help him to get it, and that the first step necessary was to pay the King the sum of 
$60,000. but that he must hurry up about it, because there were others trying to get the King to give it 
to them. After some discussion, Aki agreed to act upon Kaae's suggestion. About the 6th of 
December, in the afternoon. $20,000 were taken to the palace in a basket. The King, seeing others 
around, told the bearers to come in the evening. They came in the evening and met the King, who 
directed them to see Kaae. Kaae, being present, conferred with the King, and then went to the King's 
private office, and he there received the $20,000, and put it in the King's private drawer. A few days 
after, the King stated to the owner that he had received the $20,000. Shortly after a check on the 
bank for $10,000 was handed to the King personally. The same day Kaae returned it, saying that 
they preferred coin to




 

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