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kenn

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About kenn

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  1. I think the grand error is to equate public with private morality. The two domains really are different, and lots of good public figures have had their personal foibles. Of course, as sectorbets notes, when a politician (like Arnold) makes private morality a political issue, then fails to live up to that standard himself, you can't really let that politician slide. BTW, as a lefty, I must ask if Arnold-the-immigrant didn't confuse his parties when he got off the boat. To my mind he has always fit better in the contemporary Democratic Party than the Republican Party--and if he had just
  2. Hey ciclista, thanks for the links. Note however that Google (which only recanted under pressure from CR) is deferring to the US Department of State. Oh brother. This is the same outfit that still claims that Nicaragua's first free elections were in 1990, overlooking the earlier one that Ortega won in spite of US interference, and neglecting to mention that the first Bush administration spent more per vote to influence the 1990 elections in Nicaragua than Bush had spent on his own 1988 campaign and failing to note that Bush invaded Panama on the eve of Nicaragua's 1990 elections in part
  3. Well, as one of your directionless liberal arts types (and getting a little old to get a job unless there's an opening as a Wal-Mart greeter) I must congratulate you for being sort of right about the meaning of "third world." It was a Cold War concept, thunk up by our friends at the Pentagon, to denote those countries that were allied with neither the "free" nor the "communist" world. However, the way I heard it is that the "third world" was also where the Cold War was really fought. Hmmm, go figure, that's kind of what happened, wasn't it? The third world was the poor battleground for
  4. I forgot to mention the role of drug money in CR. AM Costa Rica mentioned this, and I suspect it's real. CR is increasingly seen as a safe place to park and spend drug money, which guess what is in dollars. I'm not forecasting nothing. The 700 colone to the dollar figure was just given by AM Costa Rica or some other such outlet (I forget) as what the exchange rate would me today IF CR had maintained its daily devaluation rather than switching to the market-band system. Oddly, this sounds right viscerally. I used to buy coffee at 500 colones and now keep seeing it at 700 colones.
  5. It probably depends upon exactly what you do. In general, gigging is a lost cause in CR. You can do it, but the pay is incredibly low. Most gringos who do it pass the hat and get a free bar tab, plus go semi-solo with an Ipod or the like. There is very rarely enough money to pay a full band. If you do instrument repair, it probably depends upon the instrument and you. Guitar shops abound, and labor rates are low. I'm a retired drummer who has yet to be lured back into the business. I would enjoy it, but when I calculate the costs I realize that I would almost have to pay to play, o
  6. Unless my thinking cap is on crooked (wouldn't be the first time) it's an issue of supply and demand. There are just more dollars in CR than before, and that drives the value of dollars down. Why are there more dollars? For starters, the IMF has pumped a bunch in for loans to fill the potholes and build the bridges that all the expats grumble about. Second, if anyone cares to note, CR exports continue to rise while imports remain flat. This brings more dollars into CR without sending them out. Coupled with this is more US businesses locating in CR. The declining value of the dollar is
  7. What if? Well, what if the Martians invaded and only Hershey bars would stop them? Man, I'd be in favor of Hershey bars! Really, I'm tired of these fictitious scenarios used to defend US military aggression. Right, IF Saddam had had weapons of mass destruction AND was intent upon deploying them against us, there would have been a reason to invade. But guess what? He didn't and he wasn't. So much for the justification for invasion (except for the 300,000 - 600,000 Iraqis the US slaughtered). IF CR actually needed US military support, THEN you would have a point. But it doesn't an
  8. I love these kinds of posts, because they are so easily rebutted! I assume that the poster is a Proud American and wants to see his country as better than it is, but except for the charge that the US "stands up and fights more than anyone else" (hard to discount, since the damn US military is just about everywhere, even in CR) the points are just factually incorrect. You can Google it for yourself, but here's a link I found right away about how the US ranks on foreign aid: http://www.cgdev.org/section/initiatives/_active/cdi/_country/united_states Not good? You got it! And we hav
  9. I hate to do shameless self promotion, but in the outside chance anyone is interested here is the Amazon link to my recent book about Nicaragua: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1556528086/ref=s9_simh_gw_p14_i1?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=center-2&pf_rd_r=0ZFKTSD4XT985ABKD520&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=470938631&pf_rd_i=507846 Regarding Nicaragua's elections, no, not till next year, and believe you me it is a can of worms. Gunboat (or at least dollar) diplomacy is though nothing new in Nicaragua (or CR for that matter). The US has consistently supported the Sandinista
  10. Don't dodge it, tens of thousands of lives are at stake. Sure, it's pretty much a slam dunk that pot should be legal, and no the effects of it and alcohol are NOT similar. Pot is way better from the standpoint of social harm. The US (and other societies) tolerates alcohol, and probably should, and it should accordingly tolerate pot. It gets tougher with some of the other drugs. To my mind cocaine is not a good thing. Its mere use (even if legal) has more casualties. So it's tough I think to be purely libertarian on this. However, when you consider how much harm making cocaine
  11. Nice "fact" to call me a draft dodger. And I'm supposed to be impressed that you spent 26 years sucking on the military teat and now collect a pension for same? Last I looked scant few Americans with real jobs get such early retirements. No wonder you believe what you do, otherwise you couldn't sleep at night. If you must know, I was among those who vowed to leave the US if my countrymen were bloodthirsty enough to reelect W, and I did. Rush Limbaugh and others taunted that it was an idle threat, and we pansies wouldn't really leave the land of opportunity. Well I did, and I chose
  12. And would you knock it off about emotions? Yours is a naive view in my opinion that emotion and reason conflict, and from what I see you find so-called facts to bolster your emotions. Give it a rest. Yes, people feel about things, and ideally that prompts them to seek out facts, but there isn't the conflict you imply, and unless you are Dr. Spock I don't believe you are any different.
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