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(506) 2223-1327                    Published Wednesday, March 20, 2013,  in Vol. 13, No. 56                Email us
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Semana Santa also is a time to prepare for May Day
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

While many Costa Ricans go on vacation next week for Semana Santa, some who have a gripe will be getting ready for the May 1 workers' day parade.

The Asociación Nacional de Empleados Públicos y Privados says that its union members will be working all April to prepare signs and banners. But they will not be the only ones.

International labor Day will be celebrated for the 100th time May 1 in Costa Rica. Coincidentally this year is the runup to the February 2014 presidential and legislative elections.

So the traditional May Day parade from Parque la Merced to the legislature also will be a time to express preferences.
The political parties who have united to oppose San José Mayor Johnny Araya and his Partido Liberación Nacional have yet to put forth a champion.

May 1 also is the day that the Asamblea legislative elects a leadership for the coming year. And President Laura Chinchilla will give her state of the nation speech.

But the fun will be earlier that day outside. Anyone can join the May Day parade line of march. Certainly a large contingent will be there to oppose genetically modified corn and the planting of such seeds in Costa Rica. Also there will be those who oppose drilling for petroleum in northern Costa Rica, the construction of a $1 billion container handling facility in Moín and maybe even the rice farmers who want a higher price from the state for their product.


10K race Saturday is run completely on beach sand
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Anyone who runs knows how exciting sand can be. But hundreds will do so in Puntarenas this Saturday. The race is the 10K Sol y Arena from  Calle La China in El Roble to the Paseo de los Turistas in Puntarenas Centro.

The race, which is run totally on beach sand, is so unusual and different from others that the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social issued a special bulletin.

The Caja wants racers to prepare themselves for the run in the coastal sun by drinking lots of fluids before and after. The Caja suggests at least eight glasses of water before and after.  Plus it urges participants to chow down on fresh, juicy fruit.

The start is at 4 p.m., which provides a little relief from the blazing sun. The course is along nearly the entire south side of the Puntarenas Centro peninsula. And those participating should not forget the sun block, the Caja notes.
beach
                        run
Sol y Arena photo
Participants in a prior race fill the beach


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San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, March 20, 2013,  Vol. 13, No. 56 
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Our readers' opinions
Brownie laced with marijuana
is minor compared to other woes

Dear A.M. Costa Rica:

It's good to know that the intrepid law enforcement officials down the hill in Quepos are on the job protecting the public from the high octane brownies that were allegedly on sale at the farmer's market there recently. Who knew we were that close to Armageddon? But now we're safe from the Brownie Bogey Man. Thank God! (Not!) What a preposterous waste of resources in a town that's sorely lacking in every category of public service imaginable!

There hasn't been a cop in my 'hood after dark in 10 years. There are virtually no services available for battered women or abused kids. The transit police resort to harassing motorists at roadblocks because they don't have enough gas money to patrol the roads to protect drivers from the hordes of testosterone-driven young idiots in their pathetic little Hyundais who regularly use the main highway as a high speed road course. The potholes in the road outside of my home are so big that one of those noisy motorists may soon just disappear into one of them. (One can only hope.) The list of municipal shortcomings hereabouts is both endless and very typical of the rest of the country.

I've known the vendor in question for years and buy every weekend the delicious food that he and his family make. And while I've never availed myself of his psychotropic desserts, I'm sure their quality is equal to his other offerings. Coincidentally, he was one of the vendors at the market who was threatened with arrest and prosecution last year just before Christmas by a rogue health department inspector who decided that the public needed to be protected from the same food they'd been buying there for decades because it wasn't labeled. (This same inspector tried to cancel the New Year's fireworks display in Quepos and was run out of town!)

The cost to label the food? $100 per item and a lengthy laboratory analysis by the health department in San Jose, which would have rejected the application if there was even the slightest variance between the declared ingredients/amounts and the actual contents. My friend, the vendor, told me that it would cost him almost a year's profits to pay off the costs of the labeling because of the variety of his offerings.

The Costa Rican government should stop nitpicking and harassing small business owners and citizens over laws that are either unenforced or unenforceable and focus on the issues that are the most pressing to the public and the economy: security, health care, education, infrastructure and social services. Clearly, somebody whose brain is still stuck in the paranoid and uninformed "Reefer Madness" mentality of the U.S. in the 1930s felt threatened by the availability of magic pastries down at the feria, but it would have been SO much simpler, time effective and cheaper for a cop to just go down there and say " Hey, Bubba! Knock it off!" What ever happened to common sense?

Dean Barbour
Manuel Antonio

It's just the end of an ice age
and all part of a long cycle


Dear A.M. Costa Rica:

I just finished reading the last of many articles about global warming and the rant by politicians from areas most likely to be affected by rising sea levels for the need to find someone to blame and pay for the inevitable changes to coast lines caused by melting ice caps.  Accompanying that is the farce of buying and exchanging energy credits and carbon credits. Which as we know are just another way of wrangling money out of those least likely to profit from the exchange.

I sympathize with folks whose properties may at some time be washed away by rising sea waters, but I really have issues with those who are so egocentric that they think the puniness of man’s technology over the last 200 years is to blame.

Granted, I am no scientist, but I do read and study geology and the changes that have occurred on earth during the milineas.  It seems that only a few individuals have awakened to see that we are simply coming out of an ice age that started thousands of years ago.

It is pretty well established that the extinction of large animals in North America 10,000 years ago happened as a result of warming climate that no longer provided the habitat needed for the great mammoths, saber tooth tigers, and other large beasts.

If one looks back to the beginnings of North American history since the arrival of the Europeans, there are countless articles about the impassibility of the Inland Passage from Alaska to Seattle because of the great ice sheets that covered the waterways.

Ice sheets have been covering and receding across North America for eons.  Each time they retreated, coast lines were flooded and those living in sea margins were inundated or forced to leave their homes.

At the same time, those living in the prairies saw the increase in grasses and woodlands.  Some saw the advances of arid conditions. It is a cycle that has been occurring long before man started using fossil fuels.

The other thing to remember is that after each period of rising temperature, the cold returned.  It, too, brought drought to certain areas.  If we are to fear anything, it should be the return of the ice ages.  We can modify our existence to grow food a few more or less latitudes from the equator, regardless of the sea levels.  But once the ice age returns, those areas will shrink exponentially and our need for food and fuel will greatly outweigh our ability to provide for the billions of people on the earth.  The ice ages, not global warming, are what nations need to be most concerned about. The most important thing people can do about the rising sea level is to move.

Changes in climate happen in cycles regardless of man’s intervention.  The biggest problem for man is that he has been mobile in the past, and now population is so great and man is so vested in his infrastructure that mass populations is difficult and those in coastal areas will be most affected by the changes.

Deborah Gallagher
Silverton, Oregon

 
Find out what the papers
said today in Spanish


By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Here is the section where you can scan short summaries from the Spanish-language press. If you want to know more, just click on a link and you will see and longer summary and have the opportunity to read the entire news story on the page of the Spanish-language newspaper but translated into English.

Translations may be a bit rough, but software is improving every day.

When you see the Summary in English of news stories not covered today by A.M. Costa Rica, you will have a chance to comment.

This is a new service of A.M. Costa Rica called Costa Rica Report. Editor is Daniel Woodall, and you can contact him
 HERE!
From the Costa Rican press
News items posted Monday through Friday by 8 a.m.
Click a story for the summary











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San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, March 20, 2013,  Vol. 13, No. 56 
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U.S. will help set up centers for victims of family violence
By Kayla Pearson
of the A.M. Costa Rica staff

In Costa Rica, 50 percent of the population is not safe in their house, according to U. S. Ambassador Anne Andrew. She was speaking at a gathering to announce funds to fight domestic violence here.

To combat these statistics, the U. S. government is partnering with Costa Rican organization Fundación Paniamor and the government to develop programs to reduce domestic violence and the demand for drugs in the country.  The programs will use a donation of $1.67 million from government institutions and non-governmental organizations. 

The aim is to improve Costa Rica's security problems which will ensure economic growth and meet educational and health challenges, said Ms. Andrew.

This fight will come in two parts, explained William Brownfield, assistant secretary of State for the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs.  It will be a program of mutual support where the government puts priority in the communities.  The second part will be an effort to incorporate more partnerships.  Brownfield delivered this announcement during the gathering Tuesday in San José.
An immediate effect will be that victims of abuse, whether they are children or adults in a violent relationship, will be able to receive direct help.

Currently, women who seek help must travel long distances using public transportation and end up in places where they can't shower or even comb their hair, said Ms. Andrews.

In the plan are three centers across the country.  The locations are Liberia, Puntarenas and Cartago.

Also, the Costa Rican government will have the opportunity to collect more evidence of crimes as the victims will be given more opportunities to present their case.  This will create more justice, Brownfield said.

“Together I believe we can construct a better future,” he said.

“Domestic violence is one of the most serious forms of violence that threaten Central America, surpassed only by the violence generated by organized crime in its various manifestations,” said Marcela Chacón Castro, vice minister of  Gobernación in a release. 

Brownfield is spending two days here, according to the State Department. He came from Honduras.


Unhappy service station owners prepare for work stoppage
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Gasoline service stations are gearing up for a work stoppage because the price regulating agency cut their profit by about 5 colons per liter of gasoline.

The Autoridad Reguladora de Servicios Públicos said Tuesday it had rejected an appeal by an organization of service station owners.

The service station owners had appealed the cuts.

The Autoridad not only sets the price of gasoline and other petroleum fuels but it also establishes a profit margin for service stations.

In the case of gasoline that was 43.45 colons per liter. The Autoridad cut that to 37.97 colons. The margin was around 8 U.S. cents. The Autoridad cut that by one cent.

The margin for diesel got a 6-colon cut.
The change in the profit margin came from elaborate computations made by the Autoridad. The service station appeal was based on the specifics of these techniques.

The Autoridad also said that stations have a legal obligation to provide service. It urged residents to call the free complaint line,  8000-273737, if they encounter service stations conducting a work stoppage.

The cut in the gross profit margin does not become effective until the decision is published in the La Gaceta official newspaper. That should be later this week. In the meantime, central government officials will try to avoid a work stoppage with negotiations.

Costa Rica has one source for petroleum products, the Refinadora Costarricense de Petróleo S.A., a government agency. Consequently the price regulating agency has a lot of control. All petroleum is imported even though Costa Rica may have vast deposits of petroleum. The current administration does not want to exploit these resources.

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San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, March 20, 2013,  Vol. 13, No. 56 
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Starbucks purchasing farm near Volcán Poás to conduct coffee research   
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Starbucks is purchasing a 240-hectare (593-acre) Costa Rican farm to convert to global agronomy research and development center, the coffee firm said Tuesday. The center also will conduct research on climate change mitigation and long-term crop stability programs.

The center also will conduct research on coffee rust that is affected more than half of the country's coffee farms.

The Seattle, Washington, firm has been a big buyer of Costa Rica premium coffee.

The coffee farm is on the slopes of Volcán Poás, said the firm, although the
exact location was not given. The deal is expected to close in May.

The firm also will be developing coffee variety that can result in new blends, it said.

"The work happening on this farm will enable the company to expand its coffee and farming equity practice, the industry-leading ethical sourcing model developed in partnership with Conservation International which ensures coffee quality while promoting social, environmental and economic standards," said the firm in a release. Starbucks bought 545 million pounds of coffee in 2012.

Starbucks already has a farmer support center which opened in San Jose, in 2004. The firm also has retail outlets here.

 
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7699-3/4/14

Costa Rica Vacations
Customized, all inclusive Costa Rica vacations planned by our team of in-country travel experts. Call us Toll Free: 1-800-606-1860 or locally in San Jose: 2296-7715. Sit back and relax while we plan your trip or dream Costa Rica Honeymoon.
7698-1/14/14

Panama Vacations
Custom, all-inclusive vacations to Panama by 100% locally based experts in Panama.  See "the new Costa Rica" before the secret gets out!  We offer customized trips to the best all inclusive Panama hotels and Panama resorts. Call 1-866-393-4192 if from the U.S. or 00 (507)-264-1279 from Costa Rica.
7697-12/24/13

Costa Rica Fishing Experts
Customized, upscale fishing packages & Costa Rica fishing vacations designed by 100% local experts. Call Toll Free: 1-866-901-0683
7697-11/2/13



Here's reasonable medical care
Costa Rica's world class medical specialists are at your command. Get the top care for much less than U.S. prices. It is really a great way to spend a vacation. See our list of recommended professionals HERE!amcr-prom


Need a book about Costa Rica?


Check out our special selections available at Amazon logo

HERE!


A.M. Costa Rica
Real estate rentals
Real estate rental agents
Real estate for rent
Business
wanted
Real estate wanted

Real estate rental services (paid category)

See our listing of real estate brokers on the for-sale page.

Real estate for rent (paid category)
COMPLETELY and nicely furnished apartments
apartment view
in San José, and one condo in Escazú. Fast Internet, cable TV, hot water. Large American appliances including washer and dryer. Both convenient locations. No pets. $600 per month. Contact: rentnowcr@gmail.com or call 8555-9819.
7881-4/13/13

Anywhere Costa Rica educates visitors about the numerous 

Anywhere
in-country travel experiences available to them and creates a personalized  travel plan.

We believe the best way to enjoy
Costa Rica's beautiful environment
and people is to have a personalized trip plan.

Call 1-888-456-3212 or local 2479-8811 to get started.

Mountain cabin for rent
Sacramento, Barva de Heredia
We offer for rent three furnished, 2-bedroom mountain homes located on the slopes of Barva Volcano, Sacramento, Heredia. The cabin-style homes are adjacent to the Braulio Carillo National Park and walking distance to the Barva Volcano crater lake. Enjoy a spacious living room, kitchen, fireplace and garage. Take in breathtaking views of the Irazú Volcano and the Central Valley. Observe dozens of bird species, to include the occasional Resplendent Quetzal, and a pristine cloud forest. We can also offer you an occasional ride on one of our beautiful mares. Contact Allan or Cristina at HPCattleCR@aol.com, or or for more information HERE! $850 USD/month. We can also offer a weekend or short-stay package.
7875-4/11/13

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 
tropical
                                    homes
of Costa Rica. We are offering homes for every budget and every need. Please visit our Web page at www.tropicalhomesofcostarica.com or contact us at rentals@tropicalhomesofcostarica.com or call at (506) 2654-5442.
7833-8/15/13

Looking 4 Costa Rica Villas?
Rent our all-inclusive, 7 bedroom rental home in Guanacaste.  Just 20 minutes from the Liberia airport, this deluxe ocean view mansion sleeps 6-22 guests.  Ideal for company events & Costa Rica weddings. With 3 meals served daily and a full-time staff to pamper guests, it's more than a Costa Rica vacation rental ...It's your own Private Resort!  Call toll free: 1-800-606-1860.
7695-1/19/14

Lovely cottage on private coffee farm
One spacious bedroom, one bath, office room/spare room with high speed DSL internet, fully equipped kitchen, phone line,
Sarchi cottage
balcony with beautiful view, especially at night with the far off lights of San José. Farm is gated and guarded, private and peaceful, owner on-site. Sarchi is a quiet small town about 30-40 min from the airport, a perfect base to explore from and also get a
feel for normal, day-to-day Tico life. Rental is $575 per month, 3 months minimum. All utilities included. Shorter stays at $45 per night, 2 nights minimum. $225 per week, and $30 per additional night. Sorry, no pets.  Contact jogya345@yahoo.com or 8308-7732.
7840-3/11/13

Palmares
                                    rental properties
Homes for rent
in Palmares, Alajuela

Visit our Web page for more information.
www.palmarescostarica.us
7819-4/29/13

prime
                                    properties
ATTENTION EXPATS:
 
We have many prime properties available for long-term rentals.
Rohrmoser
Escazú
Santa Ana
 

  rentals.sanjose@gmail.com
7894-4/13/13

Beautiful Golfito house for rent
in Costa Rica: $300/month

Available now and please see the video!
New construction includes some wooden stairs to the main gate and a small pavilion above the house overlooking the village. The distance to Golfito harbor/downtown is 7 kms and you can get there by car, taxi or bus. The rent is $300/month, which is very reasonable for those who want to live near sea and Panamá in an inexpensive lifestyle. It was so nice to live near Panamá where people can shop for much lower prices including for groceries. Please contact me at berosyyourlife@hotmail.com for more details. Thank you.
7800-2/22/13

Palacio condo
Beautiful 2-bedroom, 2-bath modern condo for rent.
(Only 6 years old).
Great Secure Area, Next to 5-Star Hotel Palacio (La Uruca). Gated community, 24-hour security, 5 minutes to San José. Swimming Pool, washer/dryer, covered parking, high-speed Internet, cable TV, home phone! $900 per month, fully furnished, 6-Month minimum! Please Call: 001-954-782-0200 or email jas21358@comcast.net
7780-2/21/13

ALAJUELA – SERENE LIVING – MONTHLY $800 TO $1,200
Villas Casa Loma has everything you are looking for.  Best vistas, climate, value.  Four unique homes in a secure private compound on a ridge near Alajuela overlooking the entire Central Valley.  Two are available fully furnished and equipped, each a complete home accommodating 4 persons in two bedrooms with ensuite baths.  Pool, rancho, mirador, other features.  Ask about part-month rates.  Call Gerry at (506) 2441-8796 or e-mail at gerrybuilt2000@yahoo.com.  See virtual tour of accommodations HERE!
Get to know the real Costa Rica – you may want to live here someday.

7857-5/4/13





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The contents of this page and this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2013 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details


A.M. Costa Rica's
Fifth news page
Cat trees
San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, March 20, 2013, Vol. 13, No. 56
Sports
Calendar
Opinion
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Real Estate
Lifestyle
Food
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bookstore promoe



drone
Voice of America photo
Jordi Muñoz  watches one of his drones maneuver

Drone manufacturing plant
started with a mother's gift

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

For a young Mexican immigrant, a hobby building toy helicopters has grown into a multi-million-dollar business.  The immigrant and his company are flying high with airborne drones.

It began with a remote-controlled helicopter that Jordi Muñoz got as a gift from his mother.  Muñoz, who is now 26, used a game controller and a component he bought online to modify the toy five years ago.

“It did not work, the first version, but that is the beginning of everything," said Muñoz.

As he stabilized and improved the toy aircraft, Muñoz built an online following of hobbyists through a blog.  With money borrowed from a friend, editor-in-chief of Wired Magazine Chris Anderson, Muñoz bought the parts to build more drones and advertised online.

“And then I sold them in one day," he said. "So I multiplied the money by a factor of four in 24 hours.”

With his friend Anderson, Muñoz founded the company 3D Robotics.  Anderson left his journalism job to become the company's chief executive.

3D Robotics manufacturers its own computer chips, the brain of the devices, and sells to hobbyists and businesses worldwide.  The drones cost just a fraction of the price of military versions, selling for hundreds - not thousands - of dollars.

The company employs 30 workers in the United States and 25 across the Mexican border in Tijuana, and the Tijuana plant is being expanded. 

As privately-owned drones have become more popular, some are raising concerns about privacy issues.  Yet with demand increasing, Muñoz says he wants to build his business along the U.S.-Mexico border, instead of manufacturing more cheaply in Asia.

“It is better if we keep the money on this side of the continent, rather than sending money to China and manufacture over there," he said.

Muñoz says the drones can be used for security, research and other serious applications, or flown by hobbyists just for fun, and that his company has helped create a market for this new technology.


U.S. High Court hears
Arizona voting rules appeal


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments Monday on whether the state of Arizona has the right to craft its own voting laws to prevent illegal immigrants from casting ballots, a process critics say opens the door to discrimination against legal voters.

Arizona, which shares a border with Mexico, has some of the strongest anti-immigration laws in the United States and the voting rights case is the latest in its efforts to deal with non-U.S. citizens illegally in the state.

It is asking the Supreme Court to uphold a 2004 state law requiring local voting applicants to provide physical proof of citizenship, such as a birth certificate, passport, tribal forms or a driver’s license.

Opponents of Arizona’s voter-approved Proposition 200 say it violates the decade-old National Voter Registration Act, a federal law requiring voting applicants to state they are U.S. citizens without providing any proof. People caught lying can face perjury charges.

Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne argued the constitutionality of Proposition 200 before the Court Monday, saying an honor system is not strong enough to prevent voter fraud.

Jesus Gonzalez is the lead plaintiff in the case. He tried to register to vote right after becoming a U.S. citizen but was rejected twice by state officials. Gonzalez used both his driver’s license and his naturalization certificate number, but officials said they still could not confirm his citizenship.

Civil rights groups supporting Gonzalez say his story is not uncommon. In a legal brief submitted to the court, the groups say more than 31,000 voting applicants were rejected between January 2005 and September 2007. Of that number, 11,000 eventually succeeded in registering to vote after repeated attempts.

The groups say Proposition 200 violates the U.S. Constitution “because it requires naturalized citizens - predominantly Latinos and Asians - to surmount additional and unique hurdles to exercise their fundamental right to vote.”

“The unique obstacles presented by the law effectively relegated this population to second-class citizenship,” they write in the brief.

The Obama administration is on their side, although it is focusing on another aspect of the case. It has filed court documents supporting the ruling of a federal appeals court, which ruled against Proposition 200 because it said federal law overrides state law.

The outcome of the case could determine how other states approach the issue. If the Supreme Court upholds Arizona’s request to determine its own voting guidelines, other states could follow suit, opening the door for new sets of rules like Florida’s attempt in 2005 to require voter applicants to prove their mental capacity.

Voter rights groups, including the Constitutional Accountability Center, expressed cautious optimism after Monday’s court arguments.

"A majority of the court, including Justice Kennedy, appeared to recognize that the entire point of having a single federal form was to streamline the voter registration process, and that approving Arizona's law would pave the way for a patchwork of 50 state forms," Doug Kendall, the group’s president, said in a statement.

Even after the Supreme Court decides on this case, the battle over immigration is far from over. Arizona is at the center of a national debate on how to secure the country’s borders and treat the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S. The issue is being tackled by lawmakers in Congress and advocacy groups across America.


Venezuelan president's claims
generate growing concern


By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Venezuela's acting President Nicolas Maduro has been making unsubstantiated accusations against Washington, also accusing the United States of plotting to kill Venezuela's opposition candidate for president. Maduro's allegations are being interpreted as campaign rhetoric for now. But there is growing concern they could incite political violence and further damage relations with the United States.
 
Maduro contends Washington has been plotting to assassinate opposition leader Henrique Capriles, and has specifically named two former U.S. officials as part of the alleged conspiracy. They worked in the Bush administration, but are not current U.S. government employees. 

“I’m addressing President Obama and Roger Noriega and Otto Reich, Pentagon officials and the CIA. They are behind a plan to kill the presidential candidate of the Venezuelan right wing, to create chaos in Venezuela,” said Maduro.

The U.S. State Department has dismissed the accusation.

"The United States categorically rejects allegations of any U.S. government involvement in any plot to destabilize the Venezuelan government or to harm anyone in Venezuela," said State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland.

And so, too, does former assistant secretary of State Roger Noriega, now an analyst at the American Enterprise Institute.

“I don’t have any relation with the U.S. government. I was an administration official in the past, and really I have been quite critical of the current administration,” said Noriega.
 
Cynthia Arnson, a Latin American analyst at the Wilson Center in Washington, said that Maduro's accusation is similar to those made by President Hugo Chávez during election cycles. 

“We have seen in the past the use of the international threat from the United States of imperialism to maintain a united Chavista base,” said Ms. Arnson.

Noriega offers his own theory. He said that Maduro, with help from Cuba, may raise the threat of U.S. intervention to sanction political violence against his opponents. 

“My concern is that maybe Maduro, or I should say his Cubans who are manipulating the succession in Venezuela, are signaling the possible use of political violence in Venezuela,” he said.

Arnson said the Obama administration should be cautious.  

“Maintain silence for now. Don’t say too much. Don’t be a factor in the electoral campaign in Venezuela. This is what has been the strategy for a long time, including in 2012, and they should continue like this,” said Ms. Arnson.

And if the situation does not deteriorate, she said that after the election there still might be an opening for the U.S. and Venezuela to repair their relationship.


bad fly
North Carolina State University /Hannah Burrack
Male and female Drosophila suzukii on a berry.

Invasive fruit fly threatens
crops all over United States


By the North Carolina State University news service

Humans aren’t the only species with a sweet tooth. Research from North Carolina State University shows that the invasive spotted-wing vinegar fly (Drosophila suzukii) also prefers sweet, soft fruit – giving us new insight into a species that has spread across the United States over the past four years and threatens to cause hundreds of millions of dollars in damage to U.S. fruit crops.

“Because we know that D. suzukii prefers softer, sweeter fruit, we can focus our research efforts into which wild fruits may serve as reservoirs for this species and help identify new crops that might be at risk,” says Hannah Burrack, an assistant professor of entomology at North Caroina State and lead author of a paper on the research. “These findings may also be a starting point for plant breeders interested in developing new fruit varieties that are more resistant to D. suzukii.”

Originally from east Asia, D. suzukii were first detected in California in 2008. They have since spread to states from Wisconsin to North Carolina to Florida. The female flies use serrated blades on the tip of their abdomens to cut through the skin of ripe fruit and lay their eggs. The eggs hatch into larvae that feed on the flesh of the fruit until they reach maturity – ruining the fruit in the process.

Sellers go to great pains to remove infested fruit before it reaches the marketplace, so consumers won’t notice a difference in fruit quality. But infestations can cause significant economic problems for fruit growers. For example, researchers estimate that D. suzukii has the potential to destroy 40 percent of blackberry and raspberry crops in the eastern U.S., which would affect berry prices and availability.

D. suzukii already causes tens of millions of dollars in crop damage annually to cherries, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries and strawberries. But researchers estimate that losses could climb into the hundreds of millions of dollars per year if the pest can’t be controlled.

While ongoing studies explore pesticide-based approaches to control D. suzukii, the new research should help scientists and farmers with other control options.

For example, the study found that D. suzukii are more likely to infest certain varieties of raspberries and blackberries. This means growers may be able to limit crop damage by planting more of the varieties that D. suzukii tend to avoid. Similarly, this information allows farmers to focus pesticide treatment on varieties that are most susceptible to infestation.

The three-year study evaluated D. suzukii impacts in commercial blackberry and raspberry crops in North Carolina, and also encompassed laboratory experiments to help researchers determine which characteristics made fruits more likely to be infested.

The paper containing the study findings was published online in Pest Management Science.


Tsunami readiness to be tested

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

All the countries of Central American with a Caribbean coastline will participate today in a simulated tsunami.
Costa Rica's efforts will be in the province of Limón.

The national emergency omission will be activating its local committees, and communication links will be checked. Also being tested is a link with the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center.

Countries as far north at the United States and Canada also will be involved.


Towers can be different color

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Those cell telephone towers are red and white because that is a rule to help pilots of aircraft.

But there are 35 cantons in Costa Rica that are not near enough to airports for the rule to be in effect.

That means the local municipalities can choose to paint the towers a different color, said the Superintendencia de Telecomunicaciones.

The towers have been controversial particularly because the new, private telecom companies had to put up their own.
Real estate-related services (paid category)

Bid on Costa Rican properties to be foreclosed!
Win big with Costa Rican foreclosures.
Full service team at your service

English-speaking team of lawyers, translators and other experts will help and guide you to make the right decision. Complete support including legal research and accurate description of all documents. Legal support all through the process.
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WE GET RESULTS!
7873-4/7/13

Real estate bro
kers and agents
(paid category)

If your looking for the best, then this is the home for you
Miramar villa
Miramar Mediterranean style villa for sale owner motivated Call Andy Tel: +(506) 8336 3002 mail: info@costaricaeye.com

CostaRicaEye.com is a Costa Rica real estate company specializing in rental and investment properties.. For more information as well as property listings, visit our Web site today!
7796-2/15/13

The #1 Authority in Costa Rica Real Estate

Costa Rica real estate
Since 1996, CRREC has been providing the most valuable resource for discovering real estate in Costa Rica. Our Costa Rica properties database contains some of the most exclusive and hard to find properties in the country. Not to mention how affordable some of our Costa Rica homes for sale are. So if you're in the market for Costa Rica real estate then we encourage you to
visit our Costa Rica MLS and discover for yourself why people call CRREC the #1 authority in Costa Rica real estate.
Call Today @ 506-2654-5507 (Costa Rica) or 1-888-414-1836 (Toll-Free) Email: info@costaricarealestate.com
7721-4/29/13

Swimming pool at night
A Buyer’s Broker offering the best
of Costa Rica Real Estate.
For those looking for quality properties and service at quality prices. Central Valley Rentals. Offering honesty, experience and knowledge. Your Villa Real Expert. Call us now  Toll Free (877) 845-4533. In Costa Rica 2228-5961 or 8339-2112. www.costaricarealtyone.com
7876-4/5/13



Costa Rica,

Central America
Houses, lots and farms in Grecia,
western Central Valley.
Great climate
and safe communities.
Grecia new
This is a property with real character offered at $1.2 million. Click HERE!
San Lis home
Incredible view of the Central Valley from San Luis $282,000 Click HERE!
 Great deals for you!
SEE OUR OFFERS HERE
Visit our Web Site:
 www.greciarealestate.com
 English: (Cristian Arce)
English:  (Luis Arce)
 Español: (Luis G. Jiménez)

   (506) 8538-6186
   (506) 7100-8489
   (506) 8707-4016

  Send us your request to our email: info@greciarealestate.com
7685-2/7/12

Real estate for sale (paid category)

Las Escadas
Welcome to our Paradise
Las Escadas – Condomimium & Club
San Juan del Sur – Nicaragua

1 and 2 bedroom condos from $ 39,900.
Las Escadas Condominiums & Club is the best Investment opportunity for those who want to live surrounded on all sides with nature and very closes to many beautiful beaches, amazing places with rich history and culture.
Security entrance – Administrative office – Swimming pool – Children's playground – Reserved parking available – Basketball court – pathways – Underground utilities.
Only $ 99 to reserve your Unit. Limited time offer
Contact: info@lasescadas.com    www.lasescadas.com
Cell English +505 8588-9827 – Cell Spanish/English 8551-4391
7895-4/20/13
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Nicoya views
Property with ocean and gulf view for sale
Tranquil million dollar view, 5,000-sq.meter property with 3/2 home built to American standards, artistically designed and decorated, 16-foot ceilings of mango and tamarindo, appliances, plunge pool, rancho, caretaker apartment, workshop, covered parking, views of Gulf of Nicoya and ocean, in countryside near San José to Caldera highway. Near the lovely town of Esparza. Can provide extra income from bed and breakfast room rental and stellar Tripadvisor reviews. www.oasisbytheseabandb.com $180,000 506-8869-9274.
7882-4/15/13

View from Orosi home

Majestically situated overlooking the Orosi Valley and the tropical rain forest, this 2-bedroom, 2½-bath home with a separate office is offered at $550,000.  From the extensive use of glass windows visitors are easily captivated by the unbelievably 7 acres of pure, natural Costa Rican landscape.   The property is located 15 minutes from the Cartago metropolitan area, an hour from San José, 1¼ hours to the Juan Santamaria International Airport, 2 hours to the beaches of the Pacific West Coast, or 3 ½  hours to the beaches of the southern Caribbean coast.
http://ackermanrealtyinternational.com
USA 678-799-8803
CR Cell 011-506-8-910-2904
Margo@ackermanrealtyinternational.com


FOR SALE BY OWNER
You can purchase property in Costa Rica legally without paying Land Transfer Tax; this plus the usual real estate commission of 5% will reduce your purchase price by approximately 11%. Save over $50,000.00 on the purchase of this $465,000.00 property. Large 5000+ sq.ft. House. Ideal for business executive, B & B or large family. E-mail for photos and more information to landofpalms@hotmail.com.
7869-4/6/13

ALAJUELA – PRIVATE COMPOUND OF 4 HOMES - $850,000 TURNKEY
Spectacular view property on a ridge near Alajuela.  Large home and 3 rental homes totaling 7,300 square feet (678 square meters) live-in construction.  Property area is 3,376 square meters (0.83 acres) including a vacant lot for expansion options.  In total there are 10 bedrooms, each with an ensuite bath.  Property has pool, rancho, mirador, courtyard and covered parking.  Homes have romantic fireplaces, built-ins, storage, other luxury features.  Turnkey sale includes all appliances, furniture, fixtures, equipment.  Call Gerry at (506) 2441-8796 or e-mail at gerrybuilt2000@yahoo.com.  See property video here:

See virtual tour of accommodations here:

For more details go to:
7856-5/4/13

For Sale By Owner
1 lot (1.5 acres)  at SIBU (8 lots total) amongst 50 acres of protected jungle gardens with sunset ocean views of Playa Nosara. Underground electric and water.13 minutes from Playa Guiones. Gated. In house financing available. Home of SIBU Sanctuary. jungalow@gmail.com.
7845-8/18/13

Montemar montage
Gated community near the beach
SALE on our last 4 lots! Starting at just $20k with financing available.
Deep discounts for cash sales!
Reserve today with just $5,000 down
Great retirement, vacation, or investment option!
Lots of wildlife on the property. Gated front entrance, caretakers house.
Water and power on site.
http://www.haciendamontemar.com/
USA Toll Free 1 866 833-4005
CR Cell 011 506 8718-9891
7830-5/8/13

Rich Coast Montage
RichCoastRealty.com
Central Pacific Coast Real Estate
- 2-bedroom house in gated community, $92,500.
- Lots in gated community from $20k w/financing available.
- 3-bedroom house in gated community, furnished, walk to the beach, $125k
- 3-bedroom oceanview house on 5 acres subdividable, $270k
- 58-acre oceanview property subdividable, $169k
Oceanfront residential Lot $58k
and much more....
http://www.richcoastrealty.com/
USA Toll Free 1 866 833 4005
CR Cell 011 506 8718 9891
Brendan@RichCoastRealty.com
7829-5/8/13

Ocean view home
Georgeous House For Sale In Costa Rica
Gorgeous house built 5 years ago to U.S. standards on 37,000 sq. ft TITLED property. This is a very special and rare property because of the INCREDIBLE OCEAN VIEW and excellent location. This one of a kind home and property is truly a must see. Ocean view Only $345 000.00 US More details: http://www.monalbum.fr/Album=E3GLBJQX
Jack 506-2778-8172    Email: quadtours@yahoo.ca
7789-2/14/13

Luxurious new beach home for sale
Top of the line construction!
This titled property is located on a dead end road only 300 meters from the beach at Esterillos Este. It's a ''one of a kind'' construction with natural diamond Brite pool!
Top of Line construction
1st master bedroom with full bath and loft area. 2nd master bedroom with full bath and outdoor shower. Sells completely furnished with front-loading washer-dryer, commercial refri/freezer and deluxe furniture. Storage area and carport. $289,000.00 USD Call 2778-8408 or 8707-1037 or email marietta234@yahoo.es
www.beachfrontcentralpacific.com
7788-3/14/13

just reduced
Just Reduced to $169,000!!!
58-acre oceanview and mountainview property

Segregated into 9 lots, Excellent Development Potential!
20 minutes from the beach Central Pacific Coast, between Jacó and Quepos.
http://www.richcoastrealty.com/1060.html
Brendan@RichCoastRealty.com
USA Toll Free 1 866 833-4005  CR Cell 8718-9891
7766-6/17/13

montage ofr photos
ALAZAN Eco-Friendly Community

- Ocean, mountain, and river views, built in harmony with nature
- 70% sold out, 1.25 acre + lots available from $75,000
- All lots held in separate corporations
- Functioning HOA with 24-hour security and gated front entrance
- 100% custom homes, turnkey construction
- Community homes have been featured in Su Casa Architectural Magazine
- Abundant wildlife on the property, access to 45-acre nature preserve
- Organic Permaculture farm coming soon
- Build your custom dream home and join our community of friends in paradise!
Brokers Welcome
http://www.richcoastrealty.com/1011.html
USA Toll Free 1 866 833 4005
CR Cell 011 (506) 8718-9891
7725-xxxx

beachfront one
beachfronttwo
beachfront three
Price slashed for quick sale.
Beautiful, completely remodeled beachfront home for sale.

Great location in between Quepos and Parrita. Please visit this Web site for complete details: www.tomstewartinsurance.com/CostaRica. Price recently reduced for quick sale. Email  tomstewart0001@gmail.com or call 713-775-9283.
7600-3/7/13

Costa Azul view
costa azul ocean
Properties in Osa near the ocean.
50% discount from the valuation price, starting at $30.000.
Financing available. Contact us at +506 2233-7778 or +506 8815-6476.
Grupo Costa Azul – A property waiting for you!
www.grupocostaazulcr.com
7484-9/11/12

Real estate services
Real estate for sale
Businesses for sale

Business for sale or lease (paid category)7115-12/16/11

Papitos
Would you like to start a chain of pizzerias  in Costa Rica?
If you have the money,   I have the ideas and the basis to start. Buy the place,
and I'll work for you! Only serious inquiries. Money or property in C.R.
Call  Mike  (506) 8375 4287 or after 1 p.m. Call to  (506) 2241 1068.
7868-4/6/13

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.

Real estate services
Real estate for sale
Businesses for sale

Some of our other titles:
A.M. Panama
A.M. Colombia
A.M. Guatemala
A.M. Honduras
A.M. Cuba
A.M. Nicaragua
A.M. Venezuela
A.M. Central America
A.M.
Dominican Republic

A.M. Ecuador A.M. San Salvador
A.M. Bolivia

Sports
Calendar
Opinion
Classifieds
Real Estate
Lifestyle
Food
About us
What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
The contents of this page and this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2013 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details



A.M. Costa Rica's
sixth news page


San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, March 20, 2013, Vol. 13, No. 56
Sports
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About us

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Green tea plus coffee lower
the risk of having a stroke


By the American Heart Association news service

Green tea and coffee may help lower the risk of having a stroke, especially when both are a regular part of the diet, according to research published in Stroke: Journal of the American Heart Association.

“This is the first large-scale study to examine the combined effects of both green tea and coffee on stroke risks,” said Yoshihiro Kokubo, lead author of the study at Japan’s National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center. “You may make a small but positive lifestyle change to help lower the risk of stroke by adding daily green tea to your diet.”

Researchers asked 83,269 Japanese adults about their green tea and coffee drinking habits, following them for an average 13 years. They found that the more green tea or coffee people drink, the lower their stroke risks.

• People who drank at least one cup of coffee daily had about a 20 percent lower risk of stroke compared to those who rarely drank it.

• People who drank two to three cups of green tea daily had a 14 percent lower risk of stroke and those who had at least four cups had a 20 percent lower risk, compared to those who rarely drank it.

• People who drank at least one cup of coffee or two cups of green tea daily had a 32 percent lower risk of intracerebral hemorrhage, compared to those who rarely drank either beverage.

Participants in the study were 45 to 74 years old, almost evenly divided in gender, and were free from cancer and cardiovascular disease.

During the 13-years of follow-up, researchers reviewed participants’ hospital medical records and death certificates, collecting data about heart disease, strokes and causes of death. They adjusted their findings to account for age, sex and lifestyle factors like smoking, alcohol, weight, diet and exercise.

Green tea drinkers in the study were more likely to exercise compared to non-drinkers.

Previous limited research has shown green tea’s link to lower death risks from heart disease, but has only touched on its association with lower stroke risks. Other studies have shown inconsistent connections between coffee and stroke risks.

Initial study results showed that drinking more than two cups of coffee daily was linked to increasing coronary heart disease rates in age- and sex-adjusted analysis. But researchers didn’t find the association after factoring in the effects of cigarette smoking — underscoring smoking’s negative health impact on heart and stroke health.

A typical cup of coffee or tea in Japan was approximately six ounces. “However, our self-reported data may be reasonably accurate, because nationwide annual health screenings produced similar results, and our validation study showed relatively high validity.” Kokubo said. “The regular action of drinking tea, coffee, largely benefits cardiovascular health because it partly keeps blood clots from forming.”

Tea and coffee are the most popular drinks in the world after water, suggesting that these results may apply in America and other countries.

It’s unclear how green tea affects stroke risks. A compound group known as catechins may provide some protection. Catechins have an antioxidant anti-inflammatory effect, increasing plasma antioxidant capacity and anti-thrombogenic effects.

Some chemicals in coffee include chlorogenic acid, thus cutting stroke risks by lowering the chances of developing type 2 diabetes.

Further research could clarify how the interaction between coffee and green tea might help further lower stroke risks, Kokubo said.



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