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(506) 2223-1327                                Published Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2016, in Vol. 17, No. 13                                  Email us
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diablitos
Comisión Organizadora Juego de los Diablitos 2016 photo
The Boruca Diablitos are ready for another go at the bull. Our story is HERE!


Internet speed appears to be facing problems
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Internet service appears to be in a state of decline, but the reason still is unknown.

Customers of Cable Tica and the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad, known as ICE, report sharp declines in service, although a customer of Radiográfica Costarricense S.A. reported normal speed.

Tuesday night was the second night of problems with Cable Tica, and the company did not respond to repeated telephone calls.

In addition to very slow Internet speeds in the metro area, problems also were reported in Atenas. A recorded company message said there were no problems.
The strong winds were thought initially to be a reason for the sharp drop in Internet speed, but an ICE customer downtown hooks up through underground cables.

He reported a speed of 2 mps when he usually received service at 8.5 mps, he said.

This customer said that he has had problems for a week to the extent that online movies were being interrupted.

Cable Tica offers service of up to 20 mps, and ICE is pioneering a service with speeds of up to 100 mps, the company has reported.

The proliferation of online services, such as Netflix and YouTube, have created enormous demands for bandwidth.


Money laundering, terrorism cited for shareholder list
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The executive branch now says that it needs a list of all the shareholders in Costa Rican corporations to prevent fraud, money laundering and the financing of terrorists.

The finance ministry, which is battling hard for lawmakers to pass such measure, cited a report from the  little known Grupo de Acción Financiera de Latinoamérica in a release Tuesday. The group said that Costa Rica needs to tighten the controls it has over  sociedades anónimas and other commercial structures.

Some lawmakers and representatives of the business community object to the idea that firms will have to keep the Ministerio de Hacienda informed of the names of their shareholders. The requirement to create such a list is contained in tax fraud legislation being considered in the legislature.

The  Grupo de Acción Financiero de Latinoamérica issued 40 recommendations about the difficulty in tracking the real owners of corporations and those who profit from them, said the ministry.

Currently most corporations maintain lists of
 their shareholders, but these are not public. Only the names of management appear in the public record. However, in order to be listed by the government as a small or medium enterprise and take advantage of such programs, companies must disclose their shareholders under oath.

Tax investigators can get shareholder information on a case-by-case basis.

The ministry also receiveddd support from the Instituto Costarricense sobre Drogas and various international financial institutions.

Guillermo Araya, director general of the drug institute, was quoted saying that it is imperative to change the mentality and break paradigms that make investigations difficult.
He was speaking of money laundering and the financing of terrorism,.

He also spoke about the abusive creation and sale of  sociedades anónimas without lawyers knowing the real activity of clients.

The ministry warned that without the legislation the country would lose international standing and be placed on gray lists regarding its financial status.

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A.M. Costa Rica's  Second news page
San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 13
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Professional Directory
A.M. Costa Rica's professional directory is where business people who wish to reach the English-speaking community may invite responses. If you are interested in being represented here, please contact the editor.


Dentistry

Marco Cavallini & Associates
Dental Implants and Crowns

Dr. Marco A. Muñoz Cavallini has placed and
DR. Cavallini
Dr. Marco A. MuÏoz Cavallini
restored over 17,000 dental implants since 1980. The Dr. Marco Muñoz Cavallini Dental Clinic, is recognized as one of the best practices in Dental Reconstruction, Dental Implant placement and Cosmetic Dentistry in Costa Rica and the World. For more information, visit us today at: marcomunozcavallini.com
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Psychotherapy

Dr. Gray
Dr. Lucinda Gray
California Licensed
Psychologist
International Practice

• Anxiety
 • Depression
 • Relationship Problems
 
CR (506) 2228-2041
US (310) 827-4241
www.LucindaGray.com
New World Meditation
8610-8/23/15

Insurance professionals

The Garrett Insurance Group
Garrett
-Brokerage fully licensed by the
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More information HERE!
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Residency experts

Residency in Costa Rica
A full service immigration agency
U.S. and San José offices
Getting and authenticating documents can be a chore. —

We know how to do it. Experienced with many nationalities. Up-to-date on
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www.residencyincostarica.com
Tel: (323) 255-6116
8881-3/16/15

 Accountants

U.S. Income Tax Services
Marlene B. Summers, Tax Accountant
Licensed by the I.R.S.
 
Ms. Summers
Marlene B. Summers
U.S. citizens, plan now for your tax year. Let me help you pay only the tax  you must!
 
Take advantage of the foreign earned income exclusion.
 
If your filing is not up-to-date, the Streamlined Filing Procedure can be used to mitigate penalties.   Including  disclosure of foreign corporations to avoid future problems. 

File current or past due FBARs with no penalties to meet IRS requirements.
File your current or amended returns.


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(English spoken). Tamarindo office hours now available.  If you or anyone you know would like an appointment in Tamarindo, please call our San José office at 2288-2201 to make an appointment.
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FAX: 506 2231-3300
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James Brohl, C.P.A. & M.B.A.
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Business consulting to facilitate working in Costa Rica.

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Fine art restoration and conservation

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Master Art Restorer
European and U.S. standards. USPAP.
Carmichael
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Legal services

Valdivieco header
Lic. Eduardo Valdivieso
your legal adviser for criminal, civil,
commercial, and family law.  
Phone: ( 506 ) 8839-5010 
Email: legalservival@gmail.com
Web: www.legalservival.com
Address:  150 meters southwest from
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Real estate agents and services

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colinadelsol022515c.gif
* Colinas del Sol is a fenced and gated project  in a quiet area.
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launch
Ministerio de Seguridad Pública photo
Law officer relaxes on part of two tons of marijuana.

Yet another marijuana boat grabbed

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A sea chase early Tuesday failed to net the crew of a drug boat, but judicial agents managed to locate later one man they said was wet and wearing a life vest.

The action played out in Westfalia, Limón, where law officers said they found a boat abandoned with slightly more then two tons of marijuana aboard.

A crew of the  Servicio de Vigilancia Aérea spotted the craft while it still was at sea, and the crew jumped into the water and made for shore as the craft neared land, said the Judicial Investigating Organization.

The Ministerio de Seguridad Pública said that a microbus also was located abandoned near where the boat was found. The craft was one of those open boats similar to those used for fishing. Judicial agents said they think there was a crew of four.,

The  Servicio Nacional de Guardacostas has been successful in incorporating such boats into its own fleet.

Law officers did not report the origin of marijuana. Typically such craft bring the drug from Jamaica.


Airlines urged to learn from near misses

By the Brigham Young University news staff

When it comes to flight safety, U.S. airlines are pretty good at learning from accidents. But new research shows airlines should be learning more from accidents that never happen.

A new study led by organizational behavior professor Peter Madsen finds that airlines are flying past an opportunity to increase safety by ignoring too many near misses.

“Studies show pilots or crew members make at least one potentially hazardous error on 68 percent of commercial airline flights, but very few of these errors lead to an accident,” Madsen said. “Airlines need to institute policies that encourage learning from these seemingly innocuous near misses."

To be clear, Madsen is not talking about the near misses on the news. He and researchers from Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business poured over the safety data of 64 U.S. commercial airlines from 1990 to 2007 to determine where less obvious near-miss incidents were being ignored.

As expected, their study found airlines improve their safety performance in response to their own accidents and accidents experienced by other airlines. However, airlines only learn from near misses when there are obvious signs of risk.

Specifically, airlines pay attention to near misses that have led to accidents in the past, such as fire on the plane or ice build-up on wings, but don’t look closely at near misses that have yet to cause an accident. These would include incidents such as an airplane rolling on the runway when it should be stopped.

“We’re not saying airlines aren’t doing a good job. They are paying attention to near misses more than any other industry in the world,” the Brigham Young University professor  said. “That said, near misses that are considered benign might be slipping through the cracks.”

The researchers suggest airlines can improve in two ways:

• Continue successful data-collection efforts, but expand which near misses are reported.

• Remain vigilant toward deviations from normal and uncover root causes of the deviations.

Madsen said one way airline personnel can improve on the second point is by focusing on events the industry once considered unacceptable but now occur so often that they’ve come to be accepted as normal.

“It can be hard to learn from near misses because we’re wired to ignore them,” Madsen said. “But the difference between a near miss and a larger failure may only be good fortune.”

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The bull and the little devils are ready to have another encounter
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The end of January means that the Diablitos and the Toro will have another four-day contest in Rey Curré.

This is the traditional  Juego de los Diablitos that portrays the native encounter with the Spanish. In this version the natives or Diablitos win.

The Boruca Rey Curré community once again has invited the public to the event Jan. 28 to 31. The ancient traditions, the not-so-ancient juego, native foods and healthy doses of chicha mix in this fiesta.

The location is on the Interamericana Sur 32 kilometers south of Buenos Aires de Puntarenas. Francisco Corrales, the Museo Nacional anthropologist, calls the event one of the strongest expressions of the Boruca identity.

The Spanish were not known to be gentle colonizers, so the artistic encounter of the juego must stem from a more brutal actual event.

The juego begins Thursday night, Jan. 28, when the  Diablo Mayor sounds the horn from one of the nearby hills. This signifies that the Diablitos have been born. They wear the traditional Boruca masks and banana leaf garb.

For the next three days, the toro appears and vanquishes the Diablitos. But they magically resurrect and slay the bull. All takes place within the structure of dances.

toro
Comisión Organizadora Juego de los Diablitos 2016 photo
Diablitos fight with the figure called a toro.

The Borucas may be the descendants of those who made the iconic stone balls that also can be found on the southern Pacific coast near the Río Grande de Térraba

The event is being put on by the Comisión Organizadora Juego de los Diablitos 2016. There are about 600 residents of Rey Curré, and the Boruca language still is spoken.



State power company facing $209 million in claims from hydro firms
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The state power company said Tuesday that is is facing a series of claims amounting to $209 million by four companies that built private hydro projects.

The power company, the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad, known as ICE, said the claims are without merit. All are still in court.

The financial demands by the private companies are not new, but what is new is the accounting by ICE.

The companies are Hidroenergía del General, Unión Fenosa Generadora La Joya, PH Chucás and Hidrotárcoles.

All had agreements with ICE to build hydro projects and deliver the power generated to the state firm.

In at least one case, a company was slow in delivering electricity, and ICE issued a fine. The projects received varying degrees of protests from neighbors and environmentalists.

One company alone, PH Chucás, wants $182.5 million, ICE said in a press statement.


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Palermo Hotel

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A.M. Costa Rica's Fourth News page
San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 12
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Acupuncture and fake acupuncture seem to have the same effect
By the  University of Melbourne study news staff

A new study has revealed traditional Chinese acupuncture treatments are no better than fake acupuncture for treating menopause symptoms.

But, in a surprise finding, both the real and sham treatments showed a 40 per cent improvement in the severity and frequency of hot flushes at the end of eight weeks of treatment. The benefits were sustained at six months after treatment.

The University of Melbourne study is the largest of its kind to date. It was published in Annals of Internal Medicine.

Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese medicine treatment where thin needles are inserted into the body at specific points. A group of 327 Australian women aged over 40 who had at least seven moderate hot flushes a day were enrolled into the study.

Half the group was given 10 sessions of standard Chinese medicine acupuncture. The other half received fake or sham acupuncture, that is, stimulation of the skin using blunt-tipped needles, which has a milder effect without penetrating the skin.

Lead author of the study, the University of Melbourne’s Carolyn Ee, a general practitioner trained in Chinese medicine, said there were several plausible explanations for the improvement in both groups.

She said the placebo effect is one possible reason and attending a clinic to talk about symptoms could help and that hot flushes tend to improve spontaneously with time.

“This was a large and rigorous study and we are confident
needles
University of Melbourne photo
Acupuncture needles decorate a patient's back.


 there is no additional benefit from inserting needles compared with stimulation from pressuring the blunt needles without skin penetration for hot flushes,” Dr. Ee said.

“If women want to consider having acupuncture for hot flushes, they should know that although previous studies show it is better than doing nothing, our study demonstrates that needling does not appear to make a difference,” she said.  

She stressed that while acupuncture is a relatively safe treatment, women should also discuss other treatment options for their hot flushes with their doctor.

Previous studies have shown acupuncture is effective for chronic pain, including low back pain, neck pain, and osteoarthritis, tension-type headache, chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, period pain and hay fever.


Vacation, travel and hospitality


HIdden Garden 2016
Largest art gallery in Guanacaste
Drop in to see some of Costa Rica's finest art
at the largest gallery in Guanacaste.

The Hidden Garden Art Gallery near the Liberia airport is a great place to find quality remembrances of Costa Rica to take home or to decorate your home or office in Costa Rica.  We also offer commissioned pieces so you can create your own unique masterpiece to cherish forever.  With more than 60 artists on exhibit and fine art in 15 rooms full of paintings, prints, sculptures, and diverse artistic expressions, we are easy to locate just 5 kms west of the Daniel Oduber International Airport. Visit our Web site at
or contact us by email:
HiddenGarden@TheVanStoneGroup.com.   
Gallery hours: Tuesdays-Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tel. 2667-0592 / 8386-6872; U.S. telephone 702-953-7073. International shipping available.
8840-2/2/16

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The Relocation/Retirement tour with the
 *HIGHEST SUCCESS RATE
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Visit many rental options to actually experience the price/amenity options available in more of the areas chosen by Expats for security, comfort, and quality of life.

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See how to choose a Retirement tour video by past guest!
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Ask the others what you get for your money, and then compare the quality of accommodations, quality, quantity and variety of food and drink to measure the best value for your money. 

Learn how others “talk the talk” and learn who really can “walk the walk”

Please visit my Web site  to contact my references.
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Real estate-related services (paid category)
COSTA RICA SOLAR
Solr array
SOON with the coming of new power company regulations, we'll be installing PV (photo voltaic) for solar electricity. Yes, at last!
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Real estate rental services (paid category)

Spectacular rentals are available for low weekly prices on SellMyTimeshareNow.com at resorts such as Bahia Turquesa Residences and Villas Sol Playa Hermosa in Guanacaste. We have 
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Tropical Homes of Costa Rica is offering the best selection of vacation homes, condos and long-term rental homes in Playa Flamingo, Playa Potrero and Playa Brasilito on  the Pacific Gold Coast of Guanacaste. A wide selection of private residencies is providing an excellent choice for  your stay in this beautiful part
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Escazú rental
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Real estate for rent (paid category)
Fully Furnished American style Apartments for Rent
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the building to see the apartments.   For more information contact: edificiomorazan@gmail.com  or call Hilda at 2221-7161.
8909-4/17/15




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A.M. Costa Rica's  
Fifth news page
Salsa Lizano
San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 13
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Poll shows knowledge gaps
in understanding U.S. history

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Many people who live in the United States are alarmingly ignorant of America’s history and heritage, according to a new poll.

The poll found, for example, that 10 percent of American college graduates incorrectly think that the celebrity television judge, Judith Sheindlin, known as Judge Judy, is a member of the U.S. Supreme Court.

The poll, which was conducted in August of 2015, surveyed both college graduates and the general public and found many were lacking some basic knowledge about the U.S.

For example, only 20.6 percent of Americans were able to identify James Madison as the father of the Constitution, with more than 60 percent naming Thomas Jefferson, who was the primary author of the Declaration of Independence.

College graduates only scored marginally better.

The survey also found that roughly 60 percent of college graduates couldn’t correctly name a requirement for the ratification of a constitutional amendment, and 40 percent didn’t know Congress has the constitutional authority to declare war.

Not even half know that the Senate oversees presidential impeachments.

“These were not isolated findings,” said the American Council of Trustees and Alumni, which conducted the survey.

A 2012 council survey found that less than 20 percent of American college graduates could accurately identify the effect of the Emancipation Proclamation, less than half could identify George Washington as the American general at Yorktown and only 42 percent knew that the Battle of the Bulge occurred during World War II, the organization said.

The council found in another recent survey that of over 1,100 liberal arts colleges and universities, only 18 percent require a course in American history or government.

“When surveys repeatedly show that college graduates do not understand the fundamental processes of our government and the historical forces that shaped it, the problem is much greater than a simple lack of factual knowledge,” said the council. “It is a dangerous sign of civic disempowerment.”

The council describes itself as an independent, non-profit organization committed to academic freedom, excellence, and accountability at America's colleges and universities.

   
Major snow storm predicted
for the eastern United States


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

After a mild start, winter is about to make itself felt along the eastern United States at the end of this week.

Forecasters say a major winter snowstorm could affect tens of millions of people from Kentucky through New England late Friday through Sunday.

Most forecasters are not calling this a historic storm. But they say the various forecast models and readings that frequently disagree on the path of big storms all concur that it will be strong, coming up the Atlantic Coast and pulling in tons of moisture.

Some areas could get 61 centimeters (about 2 feet) of snow or more.

Because the storm is likely to hit after the traditional Monday through Friday workweek is over, the effect on schools and businesses is expected to be minimal, but travel will be difficult.

Although it's still early, computer forecast models all see a windy, strong, slow-moving storm. The big questions are where it will hit and how much moisture it will bring.

Rich Otto, lead forecaster at the National Weather Service's Weather Prediction Center outside Washington, said Tuesday that an upper-level disturbance in the air is moving from the Pacific Ocean to the Rockies to the Southern Plains. It should pass over Texas, hit the Ohio Valley, join with other unstable air and become a nor'easter Friday evening over the mid-Atlantic, then move up the coast Saturday.

A nor'easter gets its name from the northeasterly winds that blow in from the ocean ahead of the storm. These storms form along the U.S. East Coast as warm air from over the Atlantic Ocean clashes with arctic cold to the north and west.

Forecasters expect strong winds, beach erosion and possible flooding in the affected areas.

However, this storm is days from starting, which means there is still time for forecasts to shift.


United Nations asked to visit
Colombia to supervise peace


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Colombian peace negotiators and Marxist rebels asked the United Nations on Tuesday to monitor and verify peace between the two sides, another major step toward a final treaty.

The two sides made a joint request to the U.N. to send an unarmed observer mission to the country for one year as soon as a deal is signed.

The observers from Latin American and Caribbean countries will make sure the leftist rebels are laying down their weapons as promised and will intervene in any disputes that may emerge.

Colombia and the Fuerza Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia rebels have given themselves a March 23 deadline to sign a final peace deal that would end a 50-year guerrilla war aimed at toppling the Colombian government.

The fighting, kidnappings and other acts of violence have killed more than 220,000 people.


Hunger strikers are protesting
illegal immigrant
expulsions

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Nelson Zaragoza came to the United States 36 years ago, when Democrat Jimmy Carter was president.

He arrived illegally from El Salvador and years later earned his U.S. citizenship. But now, standing across the street from the White House in a bright yellow shirt, sunglasses and a brown hat, he is in his first day of no food.

"I think I'm going to lose some of the pounds I need to lose," he said. "At least they are going to listen." 

Zaragoza and three others are fasting, in hopes the White House listens to their plea to stop recent immigration raids. Over the course of two days earlier this month, the Obama administration raided homes in three Southern states and arrested more than 120 undocumented immigrants from Central America.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest says the immigrants who are being deported have exhausted their legal remedies, and the administration is targeting criminals.

"This is consistent with the way we've described our priorities, that we are seeking to deport felons, " Earnest said, "not break apart families."

The second part of the deportations, says Earnest, is at the border. People recently crossing into the U.S. are also priorities for removal, he said.

Over the past few years, more than 100,000 people have fled gang violence, political unrest or other bad situations and entered the southern United States illegally.

Immigration judges have had trouble keeping up with the cases.

Oftentimes, immigrants failed to show up for hearings, then disappeared.

The United States built detention centers to house the most recent immigrants, but quickly ran out of beds and space for the constant flow across the border.

In early January, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents targeted immigrants who have crossed the border since 2014 and who had been ordered out of the country by an immigration judge.

Those arrested had exhausted all appropriate legal remedies, said Jeh Johnson, Homeland Security secretary.

As a result of the recent raids, 77 people were deported to Honduras, Guatemala and Mexico.

"Wow. Seventy-seven? That's hardly anybody,” said Dan Stein, president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform. “Seventy-seven people came into this country illegally since we started talking." 

President Barack Obama has always encouraged illegal immigration by rewarding it, but now has started the raids for political reasons, Stein says.

"Obama sees Trump mowing down opponents, so he is taking steps to provide assurances to the American people that someone has to go home," Stein said, referring to Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump.

Hillary Clinton, a Democratic presidential candidate and former secretary of State under Obama, denounced the administration's raids as divisive and sowing discord and fear.

Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders wrote a letter to the president, asking for the raids to stop and for the country to protect the immigrants.

Meanwhile, Trump applauded the raids and took partial credit for them, claiming the pressure he placed on the administration had resulted in the deportations.


Strange First Amendment case
called bizarre in High Court


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The U.S. Supreme Court appeared divided Tuesday during oral arguments in what one justice termed a bizarre case between a New Jersey town and a former police officer who contends he was demoted as political payback.

The nation's highest court has never ruled on whether the right of free speech and association, guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution's First Amendment, prohibits the government from taking action against an employee based on its mistaken perception that he is asserting a political position.

But that's what happened to Jeffrey Heffernan, a 20-year police veteran in Paterson, N.J., who was spotted picking up a yard sign supporting an opposition candidate during the run-up to the city's 2006 mayoral election.

Heffernan said the sign was going to be put in the yard of his bedridden mother, who wanted it there to replace one that had been stolen. The policeman said he had no role in the election campaign, although he was a close friend of the candidate.

Heffernan, who has since left the Paterson force, was not even eligible to vote in the city, since he lived elsewhere.

Still, word spread of Heffernan's supposedly open political support for mayoral challenger Lawrence Spagnola.

The police chief and his executive officer, Heffernan's direct supervisor, supported the incumbent mayor, Jose Torres, who was running for re-election.

Heffernan, newly promoted to detective the year before, was quickly reassigned to foot patrol for overt involvement in a political election.

He sued, contending his First Amendment rights had been violated, and a federal jury initially awarded Heffernan $105,000 in damages.

But the judge retroactively recused himself, citing a conflict of interest, and the case was ultimately thrown out because Heffernan admitted he did not actively campaign for Spagnola or assert his political views. Two different trial judges and appellate panels ruled he could not invoke free speech protections because he was not actually exercising his rights.

The nine justices, who will rule on the case this year, appeared split over whether Heffernan was even exercising his First Amendment rights during the 2006 incident.

"This is a bizarre case, that comes . . . on the assumption that he is completely politically apathetic," argued Paterson's lawyer, Tom Goldstein, who contended that Heffernan could have a case under New Jersey's collective bargaining agreements or civil rights laws, but not under the Constitution.

"It is bizarre," agreed Justice Antonin Scalia, known for his conservative positions on many legal matters. Justice Samuel Alito called the case highly artificial.

But Heffernan's lawyers said the former policeman's demotion would have a chilling effect on political association everywhere unless the earlier court rulings were rejected.

They said if the ruling were left to stand, the government could fire any employee just on the belief, even incorrect, that he was a Democrat or Republican, causing the person to worry about misperceptions of his political views or actions.

Justice Elena Kagan took that position one step further.

She asked the city's lawyers if they believed a newly elected Democrat, for example, could dismiss "every person without a well-known political view, every couch potato out there," changing the entire character of the office, because the official preferred one political view over another.

"Part of the reason we have these protections is because we worry the government is doing things for impermissible reasons . . . that the government wants to create a world of speech in which everybody agrees with it and nobody opposes it," Justice Kagan said.


More plastics than fish seen
in oceans within 35 years


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

There will be more plastic than fish in the world’s oceans by 2050, according to a report by the World Economic Forum released Tuesday.

Plastic has become the most used material everywhere and every day in the modern economy for its combination of functionality and very low production costs. 

Its use, especially in packaging, which is the focus of the report, has increased 20 times in the past 50 years, to 311 million tons in 2014, and is expected to double again in 20 years.

Most plastic packaging is used only once and 95 percent of its value, worth $80 billion to $120 billion annually, is lost to the economy.

The report predicts that with the current pace, oceans will contain more plastic than fish by 2050 in terms of weight, estimating that by then, the amount of plastic produced globally will have increased three times to more than one billion tons.

The report considered more problematic the fact that almost a third of all plastic packaging escapes collection systems and ends up in nature or clogging infrastructure.

The World Economic Forum offers a vision for a global economy in which plastic never become waste, but is systematically collected and recycled.

That means offering people incentives to recycle plastic, use reusable packaging, and encourage countries to improve their waste collection infrastructure to prevent the material from leaking into nature.

The report is based on interviews with more than 180 experts and on analysis of more than 200 reports.


Oxfam says world wealth
is concentrated in a few


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The wealthiest 62 people own as much as half the world's population, as the super-rich have grown richer and the poor poorer, according to international charity Oxfam.

Five years ago, 388 people owned as much as half the world's population.
 
While the wealth of the poorest half of the world's population, more than 3.6 billion people, has fallen by a trillion dollars, or 41 percent, since 2010, Oxfam says the wealth of the super-elite has risen by around half a trillion dollars.

The group released its report before the World Economic Forum's annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland.

Almost half the super-rich individuals are from the United States, 17 from Europe, and the rest from countries including China, Brazil, Mexico, Japan and Saudi Arabia.

"World leaders' concern about the escalating inequality crisis has so far not translated into concrete action. The world has become a much more unequal place and the trend is accelerating," Oxfam International's executive director, Winnie Byanima, said in a statement accompanying the report.

Though acknowledging that dealing with inequalities has become a part of discussions in Davos, Oxfam said it is time for leaders to do more than just acknowledge the problem, especially if they want to hit poverty-reduction targets.
 
"We cannot continue to allow hundreds of millions of people to go hungry while resources that could be used to help them are sucked up by those at the top," added Ms. Byanima, who will again attend Davos, having co-chaired last year's event.

Tax havens, she said, are at the core of the rigged system that allows big corporations and wealthy individuals to avoid paying their fair share of tax.

Ensuring governments collect the taxes they are owed by companies and rich individuals will be vital if world leaders are to meet their goal to eliminate extreme poverty by 2030, one of 17 sustainable development goals set in September, Oxfam said.

Oxfam believes about $7.6 trillion of individuals' wealth sits offshore, around 12 percent of the total, and that around $190 billion could be made available for poverty-fighting initiatives if tax were paid on that wealth.
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Real estate for sale (paid category)


La Uruca condo
FURNISHED  APARTMENT for SALE.
CONDOMINIO SATURNO, LA URUCA,
OUTSKIRTS of SAN JOSE, COSTA RICA,
Situated three miles west of the capital, eight miles from the airport. Quiet, secluded area within walking distance to a commercial center including a hotel, six restaurants,  next to two bus line stops. Car ownership is not needed. January-March air temperatures are 72 to 80 degrees F. Apartment 1,200 sq. ft (100 sq. meters), on ground floor, indoor  patio. Large windows without bars, parquet floors. Spacious living room-dining area, two bedrooms, maid's room, two bathrooms, four closets  (including walk-in), fully equipped kitchen (refrigerator, washing machine, small appliances, all necessary utensils, work tools).  Many amenities, (pictures, indoor plants, sewing machine, books, keyboard, dishes, glassware, silverware). Annual cost of maintenance about $1,350 includes water, landscaping service, garbage disposal, 24-7 security and property taxes. Price $120,000. Available for viewing:  Mid-January to beginning of April. Contact:  USA :  585 544-4296. Costa Rica : 506 2231-0410
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Small private ranch for sale
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8901-1/24/15

Blakesmore one

Blakemoret  two

Costa Rica tropical paradise beach house for sale

Tropical five-acre forested beachfront property with custom house and guest casita on the Osa Península, south Pacific Coast. Abundant wildlife, exotic plants and fruits, secluded beach.  Located 8 kms. south of Puerto Jiménez on the way to Matapalo and Corcovado National Park. Great Price $750,000. Contact Roger. Phone number  (506) 6142-7228   Email:  osaroger@gmail.com. Watch this video for full details.
8898-xxxx

San
                          Ramon
Mountain home w/million dollar view near San Ramón
Beautiful home in the mountains near San Ramón with 180-degree view of the gulf of Nicoya. 7 miles from San Ramón, 1 mile from Interamericana highway. 3,200 foot elevation so temp is 65 to 75 year around. Electric gate, private drive. house built in 2010. 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, appliances included. High-speed internet installed,  Price for sale $179,000    Contact Mike: mmpeace@hotmail.com 
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8897-3/2/15

Lantz
A beautiful American style suburban home just reduced.

A beautiful American style suburban home, 2,700 sq ft of living space with 5 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, front and rear living rooms, laundry area, kitchen and small attached library nook, arched windows and doors and connected hallways, exotic wood interior ceilings and trim, tile floors thru-out.  The lot is 835 m2 with mature landscape and orchid nurseries surrounding the house. There is an enclosed workshop and BBQ area in the back yard with lots of storage under roof, plus a nursery for an herb/vegetable garden.  This is a very well-kept property with many upgrades, a private feel but yet only 5 minutes from the center of town.  Pérez Zeledón is the commercial hub of the southern zone and considered to be one of the best places to live in all of Costa Rica, the perfect size town, not too big and not too small.  The beach is 45 minutes to the west and a short drive to the cool mountains is to the east. In between, this large valley has a moderate climate.  Pérez has plenty of modern goods and services, an excellent farmers market, private schools, private doctors and clinics, all you need without having to go to the crazy madness of San José.    Just reduced to $199,000.  Call  Jeff:  8725-8176.  Email:  angelsdad@me.com
8883-2/26/16

windows

Caribbean paradise: CAHUITA

New home, beautiful well-built house 200 meters from a lovely beach. Very private, fully titled, excellent water well.  2 large bedrooms, 2 full baths, tub, large open floor plan 26-foot sliding glass doors open to covered porch. Encircling back yard are coral rocks 10 feet tall and behind jungle reserve. Lots of birds and wildlife. House 240 mts. sq, 2,400 sq ft. Lot 1,850 mts. or 19,000 sq. ft. Price $179,000. Very nice neighborhood. Contact 2755-0014 or scottlandtodd@live.com.   More photos HERE!
8858-1/16/16

Grecia casa
Mountain home for sale
in Grecia.
Less than a year old. Owners are motivated.  All information regarding the home as well as many photos can be found at Mountain view home for sale Grecia, Costa Rica.   Contact email:   djake888@yahoo.com
8846-4/10/16

puriscal photo
Costa Rica home for sale $163,500 / 2bedroom - 1,984 ft2

Central Valley view home: 10 minutes from Santiago de Puriscal and shopping, hospital services, and soon Maxi Pali. Only one hour to San José or Pacific beaches.
- On .55-acre lot with river on one boundary
- Area under roof, 1,984 sq. ft., Area inside walls, 925 sq. ft. Steel, recycled
      Styrofoam, and concrete construction.
- 2 ½ years old with central living room and kitchen, 2 bedrooms and 2 baths,
       ceramic tile throughout.
- Central Valley volcano and SJO airport views from every room.
- Vaulted ceilings give bright open feeling.
- Entrance from concrete road to large graveled parking area
- VERY energy efficient with VERY low property taxes.
- Covered attached carport with entrance to front door or laundry-guest bath
       door.
- 2 carport storage bodegas.
- 12 foot x 14 foot storage bodega
- Security lights, And Amcrest day & night video recorder system.
- Producing banana trees, and mango, bread fruit, and guanabana trees
     planted.

Includes: Refrigerator, gas stove & oven with electric grill element, microwave, electric washer-gas dryer stacked style, gas on demand whole house water heater. Other furnishings are negotiable. ICE electric service and land line phone. Bajo Burgos Water district. Metro-wireless WiFi is available. Tigo Star Satellite T.V. House is in a Costa Rican corporation, will transfer shares. Contract indyj5vw@yahoo.com or call 506 2416-9324.  Additional photos are available on Flickr album
8844-5/11/16

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Live the dream!
Several profitable businesses, including a regional radio station, are for sale in Costa Rica. Certain purchases can provide the new owner with residency as well as a great lifestyle. So live your dream while making a profit. Contact: manager@crbusiness.biz.

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A.M.
Costa
Rica
sixth
news page

San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 13
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Latin news from the BBC up to the minute
crosswalk
Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes photo
This is the new, repainted crosswalk

Hey! That's not your job

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Neighbors around the Universidad Latina in San Pedro de Montes de Oca installed over the weekend a crosswalk at an accident-prone location.

They also put black footprints in the broad white markings to make it distinctive.  Then someone called the television stations, which featured the neighborhood activity. Reporters interviewed residents about mishaps.

So naturally the Dirección General de Ingeniería de Tránsito was out there Tuesday morning to paint over the unique crosswalk. Officials complained that the paint was of the wrong type and that the lines did not conform to those in a manual.

They urged residents who want a crosswalk to submit and application to the appropriate office for a study and possible action.

But they did leave a crosswalk at the university site, and it has the proper dimensions and the reflective paint.

Amnesty claims kids are mining cobalt

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Amnesty International has accused Apple, Samsung, Sony and other companies of not ensuring their supply lines are free of minerals mined by children.

The human rights group said in a report about the mining of cobalt that children as young as 7 are working in dangerous conditions in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Cobalt is a key mineral used in the making of lithium-ion batteries used in electronic devices, and the Congo produces at least 50 percent of the world’s cobalt.

The tech firms have said they have a zero tolerance policy regarding child labor, but the Amnesty International report claimed miners faced potential long-term health issues and the risk of fatal accidents.

The report said at least 80 miners died underground in southern Democratic Republic of Congo between September 2014 and December 2015.

“The glamorous shop displays and marketing of state of the art technologies are a stark contrast to the children carrying bags of rocks, and miners in narrow manmade tunnels risking permanent lung damage,” said Mark Dummett, business and human rights researcher at Amnesty International.

“Millions of people enjoy the benefits of new technologies but rarely ask how they are made,” he added. “It is high time the big brands took some responsibility for the mining of the raw materials that make their lucrative products.”

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From Page 7:


Monetary Fund reduces economic predictions

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The International Monetary Fund has lowered its global economic growth forecast for 2016, citing risks to emerging markets due to a slowing Chinese economy.

The Washington-based Fund said Tuesday it believes the world economy will grow 3.4 percent in 2016 and 3.6 percent in 2017, two-tenths of a percentage point lower than previous estimates.

The Fund is maintaining its prediction that China's economy will grow 6.3 percent this year, then slow to 6.0 percent in 2017, as Beijing struggles to move from an investment and export-driven economy to one driven by consumer demand.

The switch will affect resource-rich nations such as Brazil, whose economies grew due to China's huge demand for raw materials.

Global markets have been rocked during the first three weeks of 2016 due to worries over China's economic slowdown and ever-falling oil prices.

"The coming year is going to be a year of great challenges," says Fund economist Maurice Obstfeld.

The Fund is predicting the U.S. economy will grow 2.6 percent for both 2016 and 2017, down 0.2 percent from its October forecast, thanks to a strong U.S. dollar which is causing the nation's manufacturing sector to shrink.