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expat99

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Everything posted by expat99

  1. identity theft in progress

  2. Thanks Eleanorcr, CRF, and Tibas9 and others for your info. I am currently affiliated with CAJA directly/voluntario since April. I was previously affiliated with CAJA years ago through my employer. I don’t plan on dropping it after naturalization. I do have mixed feelings about it (regarding the lack of grandfathering). But since the affiliation fee is so small ($45 through ARCR) (or less for some voluntarios) then it is simply an academic argument without much practical merit. And it is not an argument for myself. It is just that I know there are others who have set there budgets years ago and can’t afford an increase. But as I said, that is not a big issue for the vast majority as long as costs remain low.
  3. Eleanorcr and CF, I'm curious to know if you are permanent residents or not (regarding your affiliation with the CAJA), and if you have applied for the CAJA recently since March or April.
  4. Yes, you got a good deal, congratulations. If my earlier calculations are correct they assigned your income at 150,000 colons. 8,300 is approximately 5.5% of 150,000. If you are still a pensionado resident (under the old income minimum of approximately 300,000 colones) and not yet a permanent resident, they cut your income at least in half to 150,000. And the fact they didn’t ask for an income is a doubly super deal. But if you are a permanent resident then that’s a different story because permanent residents are not required to have an income nor produce any documentation regarding income. On an earlier thread a new resident was asked to fork over 225,000 per month! He went to ARCR for the $45 option.
  5. I’m not trying to promote or detract from joining ARCR here. I’m just adding up the numbers with the various options regarding CAJA affiliation. And I have no interest either way. In the interest of full disclosure I am personally not a member. It is worthwhile to join ARCR if only for the savings on the obligatory CAJA affiliation for almost all new Rentistas and Pensionados (temporary residents). After three years of residency and one decides to become an RP (Residente Permanente) it then depends on your income (if any) and expenses as noted in my earlier post and whether one gets a better deal from CAJA directly or through the ARCR group discount of $45. A Rentista or Pensionado is required to have a documented income (ingreso) an RP is not required to have anything nor prove anything. Speaking strictly from a CAJA affiliation perspective, regardless of one’s location, if one is getting a cheaper rate directly with CAJA and is a permanent resident (or pensionado at the $600 rate under the old law), then in that case it would not make financial sense to join ARCR. But I understand that many join and continue membership for other reasons.
  6. I cannot guarantee how CAJA will handle each case but I have personally navigated through their system to affiliate. Although I am personally not a member of ARCR I recognize that membership is a good deal for most expats and I do recommend to most that they join. Especially when it comes to the obligatory affiliation of CAJA I think perhaps 95% of the North American residents would be well served to sign up with ARCR for the $45 per month CAJA group discount. If you have an income of even just $1000 then you are better off joining the ARCR. I have done everything on my own (including residency and naturalization) but that is more personal preference and in addition I am married to a Tica which gives me an edge compared to most expats in navigating the various governmental hazards. For the average expat there are only two ways to join CAJA. Either by filling out the formulario voluntario (voluntary form) and walking into CAJA to submit your form and paying CAJA directly a percentage of your income (or imputed/assumed income), or by joining through ARCR. Any employee by the way is signed up by their employers’ who must make a deduction from their pay, add to it and then forward it all on to CAJA. The vast majority of CAJA revenues come from Costa Rican employees and their employers. Regarding the fees for the voluntario, it is 5.5% of your income if you are over 55 and 11.5% if you are under 55. So you can see that even at the minimum pensionado rate of $1000 you’d be paying $55 (which is more than you’d pay through ARCR). In addition, joining directly can be kind of a crap shoot as to how much they will actually charge. In the case of Retistas and Pensionados (Temporary Residents) they pretty much have you pegged. You will be asked for your bank receipts as a minimum and they are not going to let a pensionado off the hook for less than $55 unless you came in under the old law with a $600 pension and can prove it. The confusion and gray area comes in with RP (Residentes Permanentes) because now you can have no official income. You don’t even need to have a bank in Costa Rica. Of course you have expenses. So you list all of your expenses. CAJA really hasn’t made up their mind in any consistent official way as to how to handle this quandary. In some cases they will just charge you a percentage of your expenses, and in other cases they will charge you some minimum imputed/assumed figure less than your true expenses. In other words they will assign you a minimum income (ingreso) of something less than your expenses and you will then pay a percentage (5.5% or 11.5%) of that amount. If you are a permanent resident and don’t like the amount you’ve been assigned you can stop the interview and walk out. You then have two options. Go over to ARCR for a better rate or try through the CAJA again later but with a different clerk. Regarding the difference in the percentage (5.5% or 11.5%) based on age (55), the additional 6% for those under 55 goes to CAJA, but to the IVM within CAJA which is the pension department. To my knowledge you cannot sign up for just the pension. In other words you cannot get the pension benefit without paying for the healthcare part first. If you do pay for both parts (healthcare and pension) you would be eligible for a (relatively small compared to U.S. standards) reduced pension at age 65 and after paying at least 15 years into both systems.
  7. http://www.tricare.mil/mybenefit/ProfileFilter.do?puri=%2Fhome%2FPrescriptions%2FFillingPrescriptions%2FTMOP I copied the below off the above Tricare web site. Unfortunately if you are retired military an APO/FPO is no longer an option at the U.S. Embassy. I think your next best option is to use something like Aerocasillas; try using their “prealert” option to inform Costa Rican customs that the package is your prescription medicines and maybe that would help it speed through customs (just a guess). “Prescriptions may be mailed to any address in the United States and its territories, including temporary and APO/FPO addresses. If you are assigned to an embassy and do not have an APO/FPO address, you must use the embassy address. Prescriptions cannot be mailed to private foreign addresses. Refrigerated medications cannot be shipped to APO/FPO addresses.”
  8. Has Costa Rica ever legislated that guns be mandatory in homes (at least in high crime areas)? The first weapon could be issued by the government and additional weapons could be purchased by the resident and/or citizen. I think the increase in accidental shootings would be more than offset by a decline in home invasions. A neighborhood night out once a month where all residents are encouraged to fire their weapons into the air together, in a barrage for a minute or so would send a clear message to would be delinquents.
  9. Along those lines of privatization what do you think about the old argument as a practical and pragmatic approach to regulate rather than outlaw much of the drug trade? As we now do with the production, distribution, sale and consumption of alcohol. You can drink if over 18 but can't drive. You can produce and sell it if you have a license. It would still require a heavy law enforcement effort in the short term until the cartels were destroyed or morphed to conform to standard civilized business practices of a legal profit motive; no assassinations etc.
  10. So your point is that we should reject anything tangentially associated with the U.S. military because … well, because it’s the U.S. military. If you chose to stand on principal that’s fine as long as you are willing to accept for yourself and others (Costa Ricans in this case) the consequences of your decision. And what if you are wrong? then what? What if Costa Rica were to go the way of the northern states in Central America in regards to the influence and violence of the Mexican drug cartels? I hear your argument all the time. Do you think that Costa Rica would enjoy the fruits of no military if not for the military of the United States? The fact that Costa Rica has voted to partnership with the U.S. and its military and law enforcement efforts on many occasions is evidence that the country sees the wisdom and advantage in dealing with what some refer to as the “Evil Yankee Empire”. Do you then reject all militaries? Do you then reject all assistance and law enforcement partnership efforts, from any country with a military? Or are you selectively accepting of cold cash from a country that spends some of its revenues on maintaining and training a standing military. Are you willing to trade with the Evil Empire? Here’s an article from the 26th of July regarding the growing narcotic trafficking problem in Central America. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/07/26/AR2010072605661_pf.html Mexican drug cartels bring violence with them in move to Central America By Nick Miroff and William Booth Washington Post staff writers Tuesday, July 27, 2010; A01 “… The Mexican cartels "are spreading their horizons to states where they feel, quite frankly, more comfortable. These governments in Central America face a very real challenge in confronting these organizations," said David Gaddis, chief of operations for the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. …”
  11. You left out “open and transparent” Obama and his cronies. In the manmade natural disaster in the Gulf he turned away help from other nations, shut down drilling (because they’re too deep?) while his cronies (Soros and company) will now make billions on deeper wells in Brazil. And how about that latest bill he just signed for financial reform (to protect the American people?) Now open and transparent Obama has made the SEC a secret society. We, the American people can no longer obtain SEC info on bailouts etc. via FOIA. They are exempt!!!! Those are just the latest two; all in the name of protecting the American people. I think dialogs the world over love a good crisis and low level chaos. It allows them to ram through their world view to “fix” the problem.
  12. I stumbled across these sites on fire arm ownership in Costa Rica as I was looking for info on "armas blancas".
  13. The Iwo Jima which I notice is number 44 on the list posted earlier has just deployed on a humanitarian mission to Costa Rica and the region. "USS Iwo Jima deploys in support of Continuing Promise Posted On: Jul 13 2010 12:29PM USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7) departed Naval Station Norfolk July 12 in support of Continuing Promise 2010 (CP10). Continuing Promise is an annual humanitarian civic assistance operation that provides opportunities to establish new partnerships with other nations, non-government organizations (NGOs), international government organizations and learn from host nations and civilian experts. During the scheduled four-month surge, relief operations will be conducted in Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Panama and Suriname. CP10 is a U.S. Southern Command (USSOUTHCOM) directed operation implemented by U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command and U.S. 4th Fleet (COMUSNAVSO/C4F). There are more than 1,600 Sailors, Marines, Soldiers, Airmen and civilians including Commander Amphibious Squadron 6, Fleet Surgical Team 2, Navy Construction Battalion Maintenance Unit (CBMU) 202, Maritime Civil Affairs Team 206, Special Purpose Marine Air Ground Task Force (SPMAGTF), CLR-25 Medical Detachment and contingents of medical personnel from the armed forces of The Netherlands, Canada and Germany and various other satellite commands embarked on board Iwo Jima. ..."
  14. As the author of the above I have to admit to everyone that it is 50% hyperbole. It was written to highlight the hypocrisy of the bloggers'/protesters' position on other outlets rather than to criticize their right to protest. The U.S. is indirectly responsible for Costa Rica enjoying to this day a state with no army! I just find that so ironic and humorous in the present context of anti U.S. sentiment. A question was raised in an earlier post as to the nature of the visit and character/type of ships. Below are two references addressing the above. I've also included the letter from the U.S. Embassy debated in the Costa Rican legislature which includes a list of ships. To break the code: USS is a U.S. navy war ship, USNS is a civilian ship owned by the U.S. Navy and crewed by both civilians and navy personnel, USCG is a Coast Guard ship (I don't see any on this list). And to clear up the confusion on the "marines" the Spanish word for sailor is "marinaro". They don't really have a word for what we know as a marine which is a service member in our U.S. Marine Corps. So the term crew members gets translated to tripulantes and then gets further mistranslated to marines. Bottom line: we will have both sailors (civilian, navy, and maybe coastguardsmen on navy ships) and marines from the Marine Corps (on navy ships) enjoying some shore leave in Costa Rica. Although the ships are not Coast Guard ships as you can see, they will be under the authority of the Coast Guard which has added to the confusion and controversy. On another list (which I am currently searching for) I thought I also saw a list of Coast Guard ships as well; but I'm not sure about that now. La Embajada de los Estados Unidos de América presenta sus saludos al Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores de la República de Costa Rica y desea informar sobre la posible llegada de varios buques de la Marina los Estados Unidos de América durante el período comprendido entre el 1 de Julio del 2010 al 30 de junio del 2011, de conformidad con el Protocolo de Actuación para el Trámite y Ejecución de Solicitudes de Atraque y Permanencia en Puertos Costarricenses de Embarcaciones del Gobierno de los Estados Unidos que Participan en Operaciones Derivadas del Acuerdo de Patrullaje Conjunto. Un informe sobre los resultados operacionales de las embarcaciones de los Estados Unidos para el cumplimiento de la ley que visitaron puertos costarricenses desde el 1 de enero hasta el 30 de mayo del 2010 se ha incluido como Anexo A. Las siguientes embarcaciones de la Marina de los Estados Unidos, todas con equipos del Guardacostas de los Estados Unidos para el cumplimiento de la ley, forman parte de los buques para el cumplimiento de la ley que están programados para operar en o cerca de la zona económica exclusiva de Costa Rica en los Océanos Pacífico y Atlántico y que desean realizar visitas a puertos costarricenses de ser necesario, en apoyo a operaciones antidrogas en el cumplimiento del acuerdo marítimo bilateral durante el período mencionado anteriormente. La Embajada desea señalar que no todas las embarcaciones indicadas visitarán Costa Rica, solamente lo harán aquellas que necesitan hacer visitas cortas. 1) USS BOONE (FFG 28) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros SH-60B. 2) USS CARR (FFG 52) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros SH-60B. 3) USS CROMMELIN (FFG 37) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros SH-60B. 4) USS CURTS (FFG 38) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 5) USS DE WERT (FFG 45) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 6) USS DOYLE (FFG 39) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. ACTA N.º 39 DE 1-7-2010 ÁREA DE ACTAS, SONIDO Y GRABACIÓN 39 Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 7) USS FORD (FFG 54) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 8) USS GARY (FFG 51) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 9) USS HAL YBURTON (FFG 40) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 10) USS HA WES (FFG 53) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 11) USS JARRETT (FFG 33) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 12) USS JOHN L. HALL (FFG 32) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 13) USS INGRAHAM (FFG61) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 14) USS KAUFFMAN (FFG 59) Longitud: enlistados. 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 15) USS KLAKRING (FFG 42) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 16) USS MCCLUSKY (FFG 41) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 17) USS MCINERNEY (FFG 8) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 18) USS NICHOLAS (FFG 47) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronave s a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 19) USS RENTZ(FFG 46) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 20) USS ROBERT G. BRADLEY (FFG 49) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. ACTA N.º 39 DE 1-7-2010 ÁREA DE ACTAS, SONIDO Y GRABACIÓN 40 Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 21) USS RODNEY M. DAVIS (FFG 60) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 22) USS RUBEN JAMES (FFG 57) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 23) USS SAMUEL B. ROBERTS (FFG 58) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B 24) USS SIMPSON (FFG 56) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B 25) USS STEPHEN W. GROVES (FFG 29) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B 26) USS TAYLOR (FFG 50) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B 27) USS UNDERWOOD (FFG 36) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B 28) USS THA TCH (FFG 43) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 29) USS VANDERGRlFT(FFG 48) Longitud: 135 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 200 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60B. 30) USS SWIFT (HSV 2) Longitud: 98 metros. Tripulación máxima: 15 oficiales, 134 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves a bordo: (2) Helicópteros SH-60B. 31) USNS SATURN (T AFS 10) - Embarcación de suministros. Longitud: 160 metros. Tripulación máxima: 10 oficiales, 39 enlistados y 115 civiles. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves abordo: (2) Helicópteros CH-46 32) USS SUMNER (T-AGS-61)- Embarcación de reconocimiento Longitud: 101 metros. Tripulación máxima: 5 oficiales, 22 enlistados y 27 civiles. Embarcación artillada. No aeronaves abordo. 33) USNS COMFORT (T-AH-20) - Embarcación tipo hospital Longitud: 270 metros. Tripulación máxima: 110 oficiales, 710 enlistados y 73 civiles. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves abordo: No aeronaves abordo. 34) USNS ROBERT E. PEARY (T-AKE-5) Longitud: 210 metros. Tripulación máxima: 49 oficiales, 197 enlistados. ACTA N.º 39 DE 1-7-2010 ÁREA DE ACTAS, SONIDO Y GRABACIÓN 41 Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves abordo: (2) Helicópteros MH-60. 35) USS FREEDOM (LCS-l) Longitud: 115 metros. Tripulación máxima: 16 oficiales, 60 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves abordo: (2) Helicópteros MH-60R. 36) USS INDEPENDENCE (LCS-2) Longitud: 127 metros. Tripulación máxima: 8 oficiales, 32 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves abordo: (2) Helicópteros MH-60R. 37) USS CHAMPION (MCM-4) Longitud: 68 metros. Tripulación máxima: 6 oficiales, 75 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. No Aeronaves abordo. 38) USS PIONEER (MCM-9) Longitud: 68 metros. Tripulación máxima: 6 oficiales, 75 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. No Aeronaves abordo. 39) USS SENTRY (MCM-3) Longitud: 68 metros. Tripulación máxima: 6 oficiales, 75 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. No Aeronaves abordo. 40) USS DEVASTATOR Longitud: 68 metros. Tripulación máxima: 6 oficiales, 75 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. No Aeronaves abordo. 41) USS KEARSARGE (LHD-3) Longitud: 257 metros. Tripulación máxima: 104 oficiales, 1,004 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves abordo: (42) Helicópteros CH-46, (5) Aviones A V-8B Harrier y (6) Helicópteros HH-60 Blackhawks. 42) USS MAKIN ISLAND Longitud: 258 metros. Tripulación máxima: 102 oficiales, 1,449 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves abordo: (42) Helicópteros CH-46, (5) A V-8B Harrier y (6) Helicópteros HH-60 Black.hawks. 43) USS WALLY SCHIRRA (T-AKE-8) Longitud: 210 metros. Tripulación máxima: 8 oficiales, 42 enlistados y 123 civiles. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves abordo: (2) Helicópteros HH-60 Blackhawks. 44) USS IWO JIMA (LHD-7) Longitud: 257 metros. Tripulación máxima: 73 oficiales, 1,109 enlistados. Embarcación artillada. Aeronaves abordo: (10) Helicópteros CH-46, (5) y (6) Helicópteros HH-60 Blackhawks. 45) USS COMFOR Longitud: 272 metros. Tripulación máxima: 104 oficiales, 1,104 enlistados. Embarcación no artillada. No aeronaves abordo. 46) USS ELROD Longitud: 138 metros. Tripulación máxima: 21 oficiales, 205 enlistados. (2) Helicópteros SH-60 B LAMPS III La Embajada desea proponer que el personal de las Fuerzas Armadas, inclusive los miembros del Servicio de Guardacostas de los Estados Unidos
  15. People love to brag about Costa Rica as being a peace loving country, having no standing army since 1948. I argue it has a de facto military. Who ya gonna call next time Costa Rica? Ghost Busters or the U.S. military, again?!!! Grow up get real, and get off your so called peace loving high horses all you U.S. protesters. Who needs an expensive military of your own when you have the best in the world in your hip pocket for free? You protest against the U.S. and its military on the one hand and come crying to Uncle Sam for financial aid and military support on the other. So quit the hypocrisy already!! After the revolution of 48, the U.S. bailed Costa Rica out financially from its decade long economic slump. And who backed up your revolutionary hero, Figueres, who you still hold in high regard today? The U.S., that's who. So put up or shut up. Either pay your own way financially and defend yourself against all enemies foreign and domestic and retain bragging rights. Or continue to accept financial and military assistance and shut up about it already!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Every country on the planet (including Costa Rica with no current "standing" army) interacts with its neighbors and the world promoting in its own nationalistic self interests. The primary function of all responsible governments is the security and safety of its inhabitants. Costa Rica continues with no standing army because its leaders/people believe that is the best way to ensure the safety of its citizens. You can disagree with the strategy (no army) but the motivation of self interest is universal and is as applicable to Costa Rica as with any other country. Costa Rica's no army status is not now, and never has been for the promotion of peace outside its boarders!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The origin of the abolition of the army is mostly misunderstood by today's Costa Ricans and foreigners alike through a rewrite of the Costa Rican school curriculum and propaganda. My Costa Rican mother in law and other non Figueres supporters know and can tell you the true story. To the victors go the spoils of war and the rights to propaganda. The abolishment of the army was definitely not some kind of nirvana epiphany moment of peace, good will, and a love for its neighboring countries. It was simply a tactical maneuver to put the death nail into any potential opposing force and to consolidate power and control over the country by the revolutionary "hero", Jose Figueres. I say "hero" because that's the way history has been rewritten to favor the revolution. It was at that time (1948 – 1949) he also temporarily abolished the legislative branch of the government, trashed the constitution, and ruled Costa Rica through his revolutionary junta for a period of 18 months. Why only 18 months? Because he figured it would take him that long to firmly establish his power base through his newly formed political National Liberation Party (the same NLP party still active and in power today) and finish cleansing Costa Rica of his political opponents. Many social reforms taken for granted today by Costa Ricans such as the social security system, labor codes, housing for the poor, progressive income tax, and the reopening of the state university are incorrectly attributed to the revolutionary Jose Figueres when in fact they were instituted previously by his political opponent Calderon who was forced into exile to Nicaragua. Read on if you want to know how a violent traitor comes to be known as a hero. Basically Jose Figueres was a loud mouthed violent revolutionary with aspirations of absolute power. He started preparing and training a paramilitary force since 1942 for a military offensive and overthrow of the Costa Rican government. He conspired with other revolutionary types to expand their control throughout the Americas after they had finished the Costa Rican job. That plan never came to fruition. He was successful in unfairly labeling his political opponents Calderon, Mora, and the political party in power in Costa Rica as having more Communist ties and sympathies than was the case. The election dispute of 1948 and the severe prolonged economic crisis and resulting social upheaval presented him with his window of opportunity. He seized power, by overthrowing the legitimate government with his own military force backed by the threat of U.S. military intervention. At the time the U.S. was concerned with the expansion of communism throughout the Americas. The U.S. had ships stationed off the Coast of Panama. After a relatively short military campaign and 1000 to 2000 mainly civilian deaths, the legitimate governmental forces of Costa Rica capitulated to the military forces of Figueres; primarily because of the aforementioned threat of U.S. military intervention and a lack of supplies. Costa Rica's supply line to the north through Nicaragua had been blocked by Samosa; Figueres and his forces approached the government forces from the south. As a result the eventual outcome was a forgone conclusion. The only concern for then Costa Rican president Picado once defeat was determined to be inevitable was to save as many Costa Rican lives as possible. On the other hand, the violent revolutionary "hero" "Don Pepe" Figueres was prepared and would have killed as many opposing patriotic Costa Ricans as necessary to secure his grab for power. The real Costa Rican hero in the conflict was the overthrown legitimate head of government, President Picado for not pressing forward with what would have been a prolonged blood bath. Once in power Fegueres ruled through his revolutionary junta with an iron fist cleansing Costa Rica of his political opponents. He temporarily disbanded the legislature and abolished the constitution. Once he got all the institutional changes in place, he transferred power to Ulate (His man in the disputed election of 48) and then reauthorized the legislature. To this day, no one knows for sure who won the election of 1948, Ulate or Calderon. Figueres abolished the standing army early on as a strategy simply to hold onto power to and establish his political power base. He saw military allegiances as fickle and unstable and a threat to his retention of power. And after all, he had the U.S. military as his ace in the hole should anything truly threaten his hold on power and interfere with his plans. His newly secured political power base ensured his subsequent election as Costa Rican president after Ulate's term.
  16. Yes, you can easily find news and analysis on-line in the country's daily periodical La Nación in Spanish or AMCostaRica in English and elsewhere which give a more balanced report. Not all 46 ships will "descend" on Costa Rica at the same time. Probably no more than 3 to 5 ships will visit at a time. And probably not all 46 ships will even make a port call here. There is no military base being planned here. There are some Costa Ricans who oppose the authorization and want others to believe it is some kind of invasion planned to take over Costa Rica by militarizing the counter-narcotics trafficking operations here. That's not going to happen any more than Hugo Chavez is going to have his puppet government in place any time soon but some are hoping for that. If you want to stick with the left wing extremist radical socialist loving nut job propaganda outlets well that's your choice. But then don't complain about being misinformed. If you want to retire in Costa Rica, there's a group and a protest to join here for anyone and everyone. Don't worry.
  17. That part (about it being also a pejorative) is simply my opinion that anything used primarily by one political party against another political party to mischaracterize, confuse, or spread misinformation is pejorative in nature with the intent to gain political advantage over the other party rather than to educate the electorate. In this case it's the Democrats; but the Republicans have their share of political pejoratives too. I'm not siding with either party. "Everything is changing. People are taking their comedians seriously and the politicians as a joke." Will Rogers In the case of the doctrine of too-big-to-fail I stand partially corrected too. It was not Bush who started it. It has been going on for decades but he sent it on an astronomical trajectory. Obama then throttled up and made the insane seem normal. We, in the U.S. have something in between true capitalism and socialism. Often times the argument shifts from one of economics to political using the terms above to engender strong emotions on either side in an attempt to gain political support for a course of action. "Alexander Hamilton started the U.S. Treasury with nothing, and that was the closest our country has ever been to being even." Will Rogers http://www.trendfoll...epaper/bp52.pdf "… The doctrine that the Federal Reserve cannot allow very big institutions to fail, precisely because they are big, out of fear of the consequences of their failure for the financial system. That doctrine is a direct inducement for large institutions to act irresponsibly…" Kevin Dowd September 23, 1999!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! http://www.georgewas...yths-about.html Tuesday, October 13, 2009 <A href="http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2009/10/white-house-still-defending-myths-about.html">Debunking the "Too Big To Fail" Myth "… the Bush and Obama administrations' actions mean that the government is becoming the majority shareholder in the financial giants more or less permanently. … The number one reason the TBTF's aren't being broken up is [drumroll] . . . the 'ole 80's playbook is being used. As the New York Times wrote in February: … In other words, the nine biggest banks were all insolvent in the 1980s. … So the government's failure to break up the insolvent giants - even though virtually all independent experts say that is the only way to save the economy, and even though there is no good reason not to break them up - is nothing new. William K. Black's statement that the government's entire strategy now - as in the S&L crisis - is to cover up how bad things are ("the entire strategy is to keep people from getting the facts"). …"
  18. Usage of this term is mostly political and pejorative and has no basis in economics. http://www.capitalis...x.php?news=1115 "There has never been any school of economists who believed in a trickle down theory. No such theory can be found in even the most voluminous and learned books on the history of economics. It is a straw man." Thomas Sowell "The more you observe politics, the more you've got to admit that each party is worse than the other". Will Rogers
  19. The trickle down theory is a pejorative political term (not used by economists). Although neither the Republican Party nor the Democratic Party subscribe to this theory they both behave so in practice. The policy of “Too big to fail” started by Bush and enthusiastically continued by Obama is an example. It was and continues to be a political calculation, just one more tool in their bag of tricks, not an economic one despite the propaganda to the contrary. A problem is invented and the solution is rammed down the throats of the masses. Both Parties’ DNA is to amass money and power to further their end objectives. Eventually just amassing money and power become the end objective of both. No disaster man made or otherwise is allowed to pass without some political profit attempted.
  20. Timothy, I have appreciated you sharing your experiences, point of view, and training knowledge, as I’m sure many others on this forum have benefited as well. You’ve been a big help. I hope some time in the not too distant future you will be able to update us (without violating any rules). Regardless of where you decide to continue living, best of luck and blessings to you and your ...

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