Think About It: APEC Aftermath - KFVE, K5-Hawaii News Now, Local Programming

November 21, 2011

Think About It: APEC Aftermath

You knew it would happen. As soon as APEC faded away, the Monday morning quarterbacks came out and suggested that the conference did not deliver, did not live up to expectations. We didn't see a $120-million spending bump. We didn't set records in terms of visiting journalists. Those who did come did not buy up everything in sight. Oh, and why didn't those leaders wear aloha shirts?

Well, here are a few thoughts. Number one- the $120-million spending figure was a bad number. Maybe it came from some of the same people who keep over-estimating our state revenue figures quarter after quarter. Simply put, there was a bump for some merchants, it just wasn't $120-million, which always sounded inflated for a five day event. Number two- no, the attendees did not go wild in their shopping. Maybe that's because they were here on business, busy in meetings or in transit most days, and not here on vacation. Remember, one of the goals was to showcase Hawaii as a business destination. Business people don't shop like tourists; they don't have time.

Three- plenty of media and second-tier administrators showed up, just not as many as some predicted. Again, bad guesswork by prognosticators. And finally, the aloha shirt angle would have been great and shown our style, but it might have suggested that we aren't serious workers here- which is unfortunate and incorrect, but not well understood elsewhere. A coat and tie indicate serious work to many people in the working world, which is ridiculous, but it is a sociological fact. Clothing does not indicate quality or quantity of work output.  APEC will be seen as a watershed event for Hawaii if we pursue opportunities gained and encourage more dialogue in the coming years. That's the reality we should look forward to. Oh, and thanks for sprucing up Nimitz Highway, even though most of the dignitaries came through town on the freeway. Think about it…

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