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(506) 2223-1327                                  Published Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2015, Vol. 16, No. 222                                  Email us
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Early release of convicts deplored and defended
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The government's plan to give early release to hundreds of convicts is generating predictable discussion in the legislature.

Antonio Álvarez Desanti of the opposition Partido Liberación Nacional said that the release would expose society to new crimes. He said 1,000 convicts would be released. That number may be low.

Marco Feoli, a vice minister at the Ministerio de Justicia y Paz, said that the prison population was reduced 5 percent in recent weeks by transferring inmates to what are called semi-institutional locations, mainly halfway houses.

The ministry runs the prisons.

The problem is that prisons are overcrowded and various courts have ordered changes to reduce the populations.

The vice minister said that 65 women and 476 men had been transferred to these facilities from prisons all over the country. The individuals who were let out were those who would have completed their prison terms by 2020 anyway and had not been convicted of violent or drug crimes, he said.

In some cases the semi-institutional facilities only require prisoners to stay there one night a week.

As of Sept. 15, there were 13,889 persons in prisons where the capacity totals just 9,130, said Feoli.

This year 2,393 men and 194 women have been authorized to be transferred to these semi-institutional settings from Jan. 1 through Oct. 23. That is a monthly average of 259 persons, Feoli noted.

Between January and September 5,539

new neighbor
A.M. Costa Rica graphic


persons have entered the prison system, including 4,456 for preventative detention, he said.

The vice minister said that plans call for constructing more than 2,200 new spaces for prisoners next year.


Expats who have been jailed are unanimous that prison conditions are terrible. In some facilities, inmates have shifts to use the available beds. Crime is rampant.

Costa Rica has had prison problems for a long time. In 2002 the government tried to enlist the U.S. firm of Management & Training Corp. of Centerville, Utah, to build a maximum security facility in Pococi.

The 1,200-bed prison would have cost $72 million and had a  $750,000 monthly maintenance cost.

Then-president Able Pacheco fired José Miguel Villalobos, justice minister at the time, because he opposed the plan. A short time later the Sala IV constitutional court ordered more government involvement in the management of the facility. By 2006 Costa Rican officials had lost interest and said the need for a maximum security facility had declined.



Scientists do not expect surprise at Rincón de la Vieja
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Rincón de la Vieja volcano is not in any danger of a major eruption, according to a report from the Comisión Nacional de Emergencias.

The agency based its report on findings by the Observatorio Vulcanológico y Sismológico at the Universidad Nacional and the Red Sismológica Nacional at the Universidad de Costa Rica.

The volcano has been the site of small eruptions since last year, and the activity has increased since April, said the commission report.

The temperature of the acid lake in the crater has increased nearly 7 degrees C during those eight months, but there have been no dramatic changes, the two volcano monitoring agencies told the commission.

Scientists have been visiting the mountain 
volcano
Red Sismológica Nacional photo
The Rincón de la Vieja crater


and hiking to the crater over the last few weeks.

The volcano has been monitored closely for four decades, and since 2002 it appears to have entered a new stage with more gas emissions, the report said. The crater remains off limits for visitors but the surrounding park and trails are open, noted the Red.

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A.M. Costa Rica's 
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San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2015, Vol. 16, No. 222
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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

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Psychotherapy

Dr. Gray
Dr. Lucinda Gray
California Licensed
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US (310) 827-4241
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Insurance professionals

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 Accountants

 
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Legal services

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Drug dealing emerges as big business

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Anti-drug police say they have broken up 115 drug organizations in this year alone.

The number puts in perspective the likely number of drug distributors that operate in the country. The Policía de Control de Drogas said that 15 of these organizations were family-based.

There were 29 international organizations and 86 local ones. The local operations could be as modest as a woman selling crack out of her back door.

The international organizations probably had ties to Colombia and Mexico, and their logistics might include tractor-trailers, helicopters, fast boats and even shipping containers with false walls.

In the last nine years, the police agency said that it had broken up 1,026 drug organizations, including 745 local ones and 181 international operations. Confiscated were more than 14,000 kilos of cocaine and 30 kilos of heroin, plus other drugs, said the agency.


Researchers reduce running to skill scores

By the University of Tsukuba news staff

Running is one of the most popular sports. However, not many runners have received formal training on running. Associate Professor Shinichi Yamagiwa of the University of Tsukuba in Japan and his colleagues have developed a system for improving running skills based on big data analysis.
 
Yamagiwa and Associate Professor Yoshinobu Kawahara of Osaka University and Mizuno Corp. have jointly developed a technology that instructs the ideal running motions based on big data of motions collected by monitoring motions during running via sensors and videos.
 
The research team analyzed the running motion data of about 2,000 runners possessed by Mizuno by using the artificial intelligence technique and expressed them in numerical skill values. They discovered that the movements of the elbows, knees and ankles differed between high-rank marathon runners and beginners. Based on the findings, a technology called skill grouping was developed for assisting runners improve their skills by displaying the effects of the movements in easy-to-understand scores.
 
Skill grouping can also be used for time-sequential health care and motor capacity control such as during conditioning and rehabilitation. As it converts movements into objective values, it will enable information devices that have been difficult to generalize to be developed and is thus expected to lead to development of health care tools in the era of the Internet of Things such as mobile-phone application.

Another possible application of skill grouping is to assist transmission of traditional performance arts and design skills. Skill grouping is expected to realize a new system of artificial intelligence supporting transmission of traditional skills, which is one of globally urgent issues.


New stamp issue honors credit union

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The postal service has issued a stamp commemorating the 50th anniversary of  the Cooperativa de Ahorro y Crédito Coope Ande.

The 15,000 stamps have a face value of 600 colons. The graphic is part of a work by Costa Rican artist Adrián Gómez title "Tarde de merienda," translated as an afternoon snack.

Coope Ande primarily services educators.


 
More nets pulled from gulf of Nicoya

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Guardacostas officer said Monday that they had confiscated yet more illegal nets in the gulf of Nicoya. These totaled a kilometer in length, they said.

The nets were found in the vicinity of the Isla de Chira, they added.

The Servicio Nacional de Guardacostas said that the nets were illegal because the holes permitting young fish to escape were smaller than the law permits.


More U.S. prisoners being released today

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Forty-six more prisoners will get early release today, part of Obama's efforts to reform the U.S. criminal justice system. Obama has now commuted more prison sentences than any president since Lyndon Johnson in the 1960s.

Barbra Scrivner knows the struggles the new group will face. "It is really hard especially if you've been incarcerated for many, many years because everything out here is all changed.  You have to learn how to live life in this world."

Ms. Scrivner was released 10 years ahead of schedule after spending 21 years in a federal prison in California for drug conspiracy.

Scrivner submitted 100 job applications before she landed a part-time cleaning position.  "You learn lots of skills in prison.  But how do you relay that on paper?" she asks.  "And then the perspective employer says, 'Oh, you have a lot of skills!  Where did you get these skills?'"  She said that enthusiasm evaporates when the interviewer finds out she learned while serving prison time.

Through Obama's commutations and changes in sentencing laws, more than 6,000 will be released before he leaves office.  He sends a personally signed letter to all newly released inmates, encouraging them.

It warns that each of them has the potential to turn their lives around.  It reads, "It will not be easy and you will confront many who doubt people with criminal records can change . . . Remember that you have the capacity to make good choices."

Federal Judge Ancer Haggerty sentenced Ms. Scrivner to 30 years. He's now retired. Back then, Judge Haggerty couldn't lower her time because of mandatory minimum sentencing rules. He said it was during a time when methamphetamines were an epidemic in Portland, and the country was urging a get tough stance for drug criminals.

Ms. Scrivner said her husband was in the county jail on drug charges at the time and, as a new mom, she needed money to pay the bills. She claims she accepted one bag of methamphetamines and delivered it.

Her daughter, who grew up with both mom and dad in prison, is going through drug rehabilitation.

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A.M. Costa Rica

Third News Page


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San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2015, Vol. 16, No. 222
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There is not much relief in sight for those expat headaches
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Each week a handful of expats here voice their complaints via email to A.M. Costa Rica.

In most cases these complaints and concerns do not involve million dollar issues. Some, like the recent Banco de Costa Rica ruling on dollar emissions, are just inconveniences.

A unifying theme is that there has been no action by the current central government to ease the life of expats here. The reverse is true.

When Banco de Costa Rica decided to limit automatic teller emissions of U.S. dollars to about $105 a day for foreign credit and debit card transactions, there were a lot of questions. The bank responded to a reporter's questions with vague reasons.

So far there has been no response to requests for additional information.

Some expats figured that the bank action had something to do with the exchange rate with the U.S. dollar. Certainly by requiring expats to take out the bulk of their money in colons and convert it to dollars will assist central bank efforts to hold an artificially low exchange rate on U.S. currency.

The exchange rate has been another gripe by expats for years. The Banco Central claims it is subsidizing the U.S. dollar to prevent it from falling lower than the current 528/540 sell/buy rate. Yet elsewhere in the world the U.S. dollar is getting stronger. In Costa Rica commercial inflow of dollars has declined because agricultural sources report declines in pineapple and banana exports, key money generators.

There are big issues, but there are smaller ones that legislators could take action to ease the life of expats.

A continuing complaint is the problem of getting a driver's license. Foreigners have to have some form of legal residency to obtain one. The earlier policy of providing one to anyone who could show a valid license from elsewhere was a bit loose. But there are many expats who have filed for residency who still have to leave the country every 90 days to be able to drive their vehicles legally.

Those who do file for residency know that when approved they must join the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social. This is not a small bite. Many expats will not actually use the Caja, but they have to pay the monthly quota anyway. That can be as much as $400 a month for a rentista. The Caja does

headache
A.M. Costa Rica photo


not give credit for those expats who have valid medical insurance here, such as the retired members of the U.S. military, and U.S. seniors who are getting by on Medicare.

Plenty of North Americans only are here part of the year and enter on tourism visas. A number own luxury condos and houses. Yet they, too, must leave the country after 90 days to renew their visa. This is another gripe from long-term visitors here. Expat advocate thought this issue was resolved in the 2010 immigration law, but the final draft prohibited administrative renewal of visas issued for 90 days, the type given most North Americans.

Such badly drafted legislation does not equal good public relations. Not only that but North American snow birds with dwellings here probably also are paying the luxury home tax that was supposed to build homes for the poor.

Expats and long-term visitors alike are very concerned about the proposed changes in the tax laws. They fear that the government will slap a 15 percent assessment on money entering the country, even those at the Banco de Costa Rica automatic tellers.

Plenty of expats receive money from their home countries as pensions or dividends. And some are just getting by. Nothing has been settled yet on this issue in the legislature, and even the best intentions sometimes can become badly drafted law.

Many expats know that good manners prohibit becoming involved in Costa Rican politics. That rule does not apply when the issues directly affect the expats. Plus many have Costa Rica spouses.

So concerned expats have the option of writing lawmakers HERE!  They might be surprised to receive a response.



Another name added to the list of weekend murder victims
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Another name has been added to the weekend murder toll, and a second man suffered injuries, both Sunday evening.

Both men appear to have been victims of robberies.

A.M. Costa Rica reported Monday that seven persons died from Friday through Sunday. However, a 50-year-old man with the last name of Porras was not included in the total. He died about 5:50 p.m. Sunday in Parismina de Guácimo on Ruta 32.

His body was found in the middle of the highway, and
 investigators believe that he was the victim of a robbery while riding his motorcycle.

His motorcycle was not found, and the suspicion is that two men on a second motorcycle drove up behind him and shot him. Then one of the men drove off with the stolen motorcycle.

Porras was headed to Siquirres.

The wounded man has the last name of Herrera. He is 24. Investigators said he was confronted by four men in the La Carpio sector. They sought to rob him, but he resisted. He received three bullet wounds about 11 p.m.

You need to see Costa Rican tourism information HERE!

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New study suggests a much lower target for controlling blood pressure
By the University of Utah news staff

A new study finds that at least 16.8 million Americans could potentially benefit from lowering their systolic blood pressure to 120 mm. of mercury, much lower than current guidelines of 140 or 150 mm.

The collaborative investigation between the University of Utah, University of Alabama at Birmingham, and Columbia University, will be published online in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

The scientists calculated the potential impact of preliminary results from the Systolic Blood Pressure Intervention Trial that also will be published online in the New England Journal of Medicine. The initial analysis, reported in September, showed that using antihypertensive medications to reach a lower systolic target of 120 mm.  could greatly reduce risk for heart failure, heart attack, and death, compared to a target of 140 mm. Systolic is the top number in a blood pressure reading. It’s estimated that one in three U.S. adults have high blood pressure, or hypertension, a significant health concern.

The intervention trial could have broad implications, says lead author Adam Bress, assistant professor of pharmacotherapy at the University of Utah College of Pharmacy. “Millions of Americans whose blood pressure is under control according to current guidelines may be considered uncontrolled if new guidelines adopt the intensive target of less than 120 mm. Hg studied in SPRINT.”

While new medical guidelines for treating hypertension could be months to years away, this research finds that more than 16.8 million Americans, 7.6 percent of the population, could be recommended for intensive blood pressure management if guidelines incorporate a new, lower, systolic target. The number represents Americans who meet the same criteria as trial participants: They are age 50 or older, have a systolic

blood pressure between 130 and 180 mm., are at high risk for cardiovascular disease, and do not have diabetes or a history of stroke, among other inclusion and exclusion criteria.

The current study also reports that new guidelines may affect some segments of the population more than others. Compared to Caucasians, African Americans and Hispanics were less likely to meet intervention trial eligibility criteria (9 percent vs. 4.8 percent, 4.3 percent). The differences are largely due to the fact that these minority populations have a higher prevalence of diabetes and other health conditions that could preclude them from being eligible.

Men were also more likely to be eligible for the trial than women (8.8 percent vs. 6.5 percent), in part because unlike men, women tend not to show increased risk for cardiovascular disease until they are over 65.

However in practice, it’s common for physicians to prescribe treatments to patients who may have not been eligible for a clinical trial that demonstrated the efficacy and safety of a particular treatment. For example, some physicians may deviate from trial eligibility by aggressively treating the blood pressure of any adult over 50, even if they do not have a high risk of cardiovascular disease.

“Physicians are going to need to decide how far outside the SPRINT inclusion criteria to go,” says co-author Rachel Hess,  also a professor of internal medicine and population health sciences at the University of Utah School of Medicine. “It’s going to be a tough decision.”

New blood pressure guidelines will have to weight potential adverse effects that could overshadow its benefits, and whether increasing blood pressure medications over the course of multiple years is cost-effective. But the numbers obtained in this study offer a glimpse into the potentially wide ranging impact of changing blood pressure guidelines.

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.
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Click photo for another video

The Relocation/Retirement tour with the
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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!
http://www.vimeo.com/5656822

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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8577-2/15/15

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When you visit Costa Rica, you'll want to discover what you need to know to  make the right choice about moving to this tropical paradise.  Our familiarization tours have won hard-earned credentials that prove general excellence and the right focus.  These are the only retirement tours that are licensed and approved by the Costa Rican government and tourism institute  (ICT). In 2006 we were featured on the NBC Today Show and World News.  In 2010, we won the  prestigious Latin America-Asia Travel Excellence Award for the Best and Most Unique Tour in Latin America.

   * Discover how to make the right choices about moving here
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8479-9/11/14

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



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Real estate rentals
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Real estate for rent
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Real estate rental services (paid category)

Fully Furnished American style Apartments for Rent
2-bedroom, 2- bathroom, fully furnished American-style apartments with elevator in a secure building in Barrio Amó. Cable, Internet, water included. Shared laundry. Convenient to Parque Morazán,
hotels, restaurants, casinos, city government, national registry. $600-$650 per month plus electricity. ½ month security deposit. No lease.  The larger apartments are $650 per month. They have larger bedrooms, living rooms and kitchens. It would be best for the prospective tenants to visit
Barrio Amon
the building to see the apartments.   For more information contact: edificiomorazan@gmail.com  or call Hilda at 2221-7161.
8826-1/16/16



Beautiful Apartment

Lemur del Bosque
for Rent

San Francisco de Dos Ríos, El Bosque, furnished 2-bedroom,1-bath apartment, quiet area, free cable TV WiFi, large patio area, swimming pool, parking, security. Close to San José. $450/month. Retired persons preferred. Call 8375-6838. Email: jorge.jorgejim@gmail.com.
8810-11/24/15
Lemur

Plumita
COSTA RICA COZY APARTMENT ON THE BEACH!!
Unfurnished 400-sq. ft. apartment, with modern kitchen, located on beautiful Junquillal Beach is waiting for you. Sea Turtles are common to this beach. Great area for surfing one of C.R.'s premier surf spots or boogie boarding. Close to a market, restaurants and more touristy areas - Playa Negra and Tamarindo, if you want shopping, etc. This area is a great community. If you are looking for a nice relaxing area, this is it. $500 month + electric, visit our Web page - plumitapacifica.com  - for more info, photos and to view a video. Or call (506) 5004-3473.
8809-10/7/15

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
8784-2/19/16

Real estate for rent

house for rent
Beautiful fully furnished house for rent
2 bedrooms, 2 baths, fully furnished $800 + electric, includes cable TV, Wifi, Internet. Inside gated property close to town. Contact organicfarmhouserental@gmail.com.
8830-11/20/15

Oganic farm rental
2 bedroom, 1 bath, $700 includes electric, water, cable, Internet & WiFi. Fully furnished. Inside gated property close to town, Santa Bárbara de Heredia. No dogs please.
organicfarmhouserental@gmail.com
8800-10/16/1

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 
Timeshare
1- to 3-bedroom ocean and garden view timeshares available and most offer air conditioning, cable TV, fully equipped kitchens, and relaxing hammocks on private balconies. Enjoy the unique combination of seclusion and convenience as all resorts listed on our site are close to popular Costa Rican attractions and downtown 
centers, but are surrounded in lush, tropical forest. Villas are also available for sale in our inventory, so you can enjoy yearly vacations to this mesmerizing rainforest paradise. Please visit our rental inventory HERE!  or call us toll free at 877-815-4227, International: 603-516-0200.  Email: info@sellmytimesharenow.com
8766-7/30/16

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 baths, appliances included. High-speed internet installed, Direct TV via sling box on Internet.  Rent per month $750 plus utilities with free internet.  Price for Sale $179,000   Contact Mike: mmpeace@hotmail.com  Check out slide show HERE!
8670-6/30/15



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A.M. Costa Rica's
  
Fifth news page
Manuel Antonio
San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2015, Vol. 16, No. 222
Sports
Calendar
Opinion
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Real Estate
Lifestyle
Food
About us

VW plans to lavish gifts
on U.S. owners of diesels


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Volkswagen says it will offer $1,000 in gift cards and vouchers to the owners of 482,000 VW diesel vehicles in the U.S. that are linked to the German automaker's emissions cheating scandal.

VW said Monday the motorists, many of them angry at the company for selling them cars that are not as environmentally sensitive as it advertised, would get a $500 Visa gift card, a $500 card that could be used for service at VW dealerships and free roadside assistance for three years.

The payments come as VW, one of the world's largest auto manufacturers, struggles to determine a fix for the cars, which are equipped with software that turns on pollution controls during government tests and turns them off in normal driving.  With the switch in controls, U.S. environmental regulators say that as a result, the affected cars emit 10 to 40 times the allowable amount of harmful nitrogen oxide while they are being driven.

"We are working tirelessly to develop an approved remedy for affected vehicles,'' Michael Horn, VW's U.S. chief executive, said in a statement.  "In the meantime, we are providing this goodwill package as a first step towards regaining our customers' trust."

The payments will go to owners of several 2009 to 2015 VW models, including Jettas, Passats, Golfs and Beetles.  The company is recalling 8.5 million cars in Europe as a result of the bogus emissions tests and another 2.5 million are affected throughout the rest of the world.

American motorists have filed more than 200 class-action lawsuits against VW in the scandal, alleging the bogus emissions tests have decreased the value of the cars.  Acceptance of the gift cards does not prohibit motorists from suing VW.


Poultry manure problem
growing all over world


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

To the list of jobs you didn’t know existed, add this one: manure broker.

That’s one of the hats Ray Ellis wears. A poultry and grain farmer in Millsboro, Delaware, Ellis discovered years ago that there’s money to be made from what chickens leave behind.

According to him, the old folks here say the local soil didn’t used to grow much.

“But man," he said, "when they put the poultry manure on there, they just said it would wake the land up. That’s what the old guys always said. It would wake the land up.”

That’s a good thing, because there’s a whole lot of excess chicken manure on the Delmarva Peninsula, so named because the U.S. states of Delaware, Maryland and Virginia share the 5,500-square-mile tongue of land, bordered by the Atlantic Ocean on the east and the Chesapeake Bay on the west.

Delmarva poultry is a $3 billion industry. Farmers raised almost 570 million chickens last year, in giant barns that hold tens of thousands of birds at a time.

Cleaning out those barns is a dirty, smelly job. When Ellis got a small tractor that made the job easier, neighbors started asking him to do theirs. And his business grew from there.

Pretty soon, he had more manure than he needed for his farm.

“So, then we started selling manure to other farmers who didn’t have enough,” he explained. Now, he connects manure from about 600 chicken barns across Delmarva with farmers who want it.

But chicken manure has a downside (besides the smell). When it washes off fields and into the Chesapeake Bay, the same nutrients that make crops grow also make algae grow. A bumper crop of corn is good. On the other hand, a bumper crop of algae is mostly bad. Too much of the water weed blocks out light and oxygen to key aquatic plants and animals, triggering dead zones that kill fish, oysters and other life.

New rules aim to keep that manure out of the water. But Ellis says those rules will make it harder to find a place for the chicken waste. And if farmers can’t get rid of the manure, he says, that could throw a monkey wrench in Delmarva’s poultry industry, and the region’s entire economy.

The problem of nutrient pollution from agriculture is global. It’s a leading reason why the number of dead zones worldwide has grown exponentially since the 1960s. A 2008 study counted more than 400, covering a total of more than 9,000 square miles.

And as large-scale animal agriculture expands worldwide, experts say the problem may expand in kind.

Around the world, the demand for meat, milk and eggs is exploding. Growing numbers of people are rising out of poverty and can afford to eat them. That’s driving a global transformation from small, backyard herds and flocks to industrial-scale operations. These large, efficient facilities are bringing affordable animal products to more and more people. But handling the waste they produce without polluting the environment is proving to be a major challenge.

Chicken manure is especially high in phosphorus, one of the nutrients feeding algal growth in the Chesapeake Bay. And scientists have found that phosphorus is more likely to wash off fields and into waterways than they thought.

“The old science said if you manage erosion and kept the soil on your farm, phosphorus loss wasn’t an issue,” said Royden Powell, assistant secretary for resource conservation at the Maryland Department of Agriculture. “We now know better.”

But after decades of fertilizing with poultry manure, many Delmarva fields are overloaded with phosphorus. So the state of Maryland recently implemented new rules that bar farmers from applying any more.

That means that of the roughly 330,000 tons of chicken waste removed from poultry barns each year, Powell says about 200,000 tons will have to find a new home.

He adds that there are plenty of farms in the area that aren’t saturated with phosphorus and could use the manure. He estimates that only about a quarter to a third of Maryland’s farmers are using it now. The rest, he notes, are paying more for commercial fertilizer.

“There are more farmers looking for poultry litter today than supply can provide,” he said.

But Ellis is skeptical.

“That’s what I do. Nobody does it any more than I do,” he said. “The logistics are not gonna work and the customers aren't there. And it’s gonna snowball on them.”

And he worries about the fallout. “We’re talking about people’s livelihoods, we’re talking about an industry, we’re talking about the way of life on the Delmarva that’s been here for years.”

But where some see a waste-disposal crisis, others see opportunity.

Triea Technologies is developing a process that extracts the phosphorus from poultry manure to sell to farmers elsewhere. “The motto of Triea is, 'we turn manure into money,'” said CEO Chris Haug. “And when you’re talking about that kind of volume, you’re talking about a very, very attractive economic model.” Haug estimates the company will be able to produce phosphorus-free fertilizer for one-half to one-third the cost of commercial products.

And there are others plan to turn the manure into energy.

Irish company BHSL plans to build a plant that will burn poultry waste to heat chicken barns, generate electricity and produce phosphorus-rich ash that can be sold. The firm has similar operations in the United Kingdom and Ireland.

Others want to generate methane, bio-oil or other products from it.

Maryland is investing $2.5 million per year to develop new uses for chicken manure. Powell is optimistic that they’ll come up with something.

“It’s a very exciting time,” he said. “We’re smart. I mean, if you look at the progress we’ve made, we’ve put people in space, we’ve put people on the moon, we figure things out.”


Two top Missouri officials
quit their university posts

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The president of the University of Missouri and the chancellor of the flagship campus each announced Monday they are resigning their positions, giving in to a key demand of student protesters who said the leadership did not adequately deal with repeated instances of racial and other discrimination on campus.

Tim Wolfe, the school system’s president, made his emotional announcement at a meeting of the school's governing body at the main campus of the 35,000-student university in the central state of Missouri.

“I take full responsibility for this frustration, and I take full responsibility for the inaction that has occurred,” said Wolfe, who also called on students to use his resignation “to heal and start talking again.”

The issue attracted nationwide attention after the student government joined some faculty members and players on the school's football team in calling for Wolfe's ouster. Some teachers and students had threatened to walk out over the matter.

University Chancellor Bowen Lofton said he would move on to a new role on the Columbia campus dealing with research.

Greg Carr, chair of the Department of Afro-American Studies at Howard University in Washington, D.C., said students have been at the forefront of the U.S. civil rights movement since the mid-20th century.

“Most of the progress we’ve made in human rights and civil rights in this country have been through movements that were student led,” he said.

Many students at the overwhelmingly white campus are upset at racial slurs directed at some black students in recent weeks and a swastika drawn in human waste found in a dormitory bathroom.

Since then, a diverse array of student groups has joined the protest movement, speaking out against alleged acts of discrimination against other racial and sexual minority groups.  Others have been calling for the school to reverse cutbacks to graduate student benefits.

The protesters, however, appeared to be primarily motivated by racial issues.

A black graduate student, Jonathan Butler, started a hunger strike a week ago in protest, an action that has drawn increasing support on campus, including from 30 black football players who said they would not participate in any team related activities unless Wolfe quit or was fired. After Wolfe resigned, Butler said he ended his hunger strike.

The school's head football coach, Gary Pinkel, expressed solidarity with his player's decision to not play, a threat that if acted on, would have cost the school more than $1 million from next Saturday’s game.

Carr noted that the students wisely applied some powerful leverage to get action.

“So when you see the potential of student athletes, student athletes saying they won’t perform on athletic fields, this has a profound economic implication.  You’re talking about millions of dollars,” he said.

Jeremy Neely, an instructor of history at Missouri State University in Springfield, said one of the most encouraging parts of the student movement is the political assertiveness of the football team that was willing to speak up and take a stand against a climate of intolerance.

“It’s the second time in the past couple of years that the University of Missouri football team has become socially relevant on a national scale, because it was in 2013 that their teammate Michael Sam became the first college football player to come out. And he was supported by teammates, and I think that was remarkable," he said. "So this isn’t the first time that the football team has come out and taken a position to distinguish themselves from the university.”

Lofton said before Butler’s hunger strike began, the school had created a vice chancellor for inclusion, diversity and equity, planned required diversity training for all incoming students, committed to a campus climate survey, and mandated search committees to complete training aimed at diverse and inclusive hiring,  all with Wolfe’s support and endorsement.

The controversy comes amid ongoing nationwide racial tensions surrounding instances of police violence against unarmed black men. The University of Missouri is about 200 kilometers from where 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot after a confrontation with a white police officer in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson in 2014. Investigators ultimately determined the shooting was justified and the police officer was not charged.


Republican debate tonight
features just eight candidates


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The top Republican presidential contenders hold their fourth debate tonight in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, amid shifting poll numbers and increasing attacks on each other. This debate will feature the top eight candidates based on a minimum standing of at least 2.5 percent in the latest polls.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee have been demoted to the so-called undercard' debate, while Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and former New York governor George Pataki failed to qualify for either debate.

Tuesday's debate is sponsored by the Fox Business Network and will focus on the economy. But much of the spotlight is likely to be on the two top contenders at the moment, Donald Trump and Ben Carson. Carson has been on the defensive in recent days after numerous questions about incidents in his past including a claim that he once was offered a full scholarship to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York.

Carson can expect more questions about his past during the debate, but it also appears he will be ready with some feisty comebacks. At a Friday news conference in Florida, Carson said he wanted the focus on unfair treatment by the media.

Donald Trump was in the spotlight once again as he hosted NBC's "Saturday Night Live" even as anti-Trump protesters made their presence felt on the streets outside. Although one of the highest-rated SNL shows in recent years, a lot of critics thought the Trump-hosted show was dull.

The latest polls show Trump and Carson bunched at the top of the crowded Republican field with Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz also picking up steam. Rubio was considered a winner in last month's Republican debate, though most of the candidates complained that the questions from the CNBC moderators were biased and unfair.

Tuesday's debate will also be a test for Jeb Bush, who has slipped in recent polls and remains focused on a reboot of his campaign, now running under the theme of "Jeb Can Fix It."

"I will not trade in an optimistic outlook to put on the cloak of an angry agitator, and I will not make anyone feel small so I can feel big," Bush said during his relaunch in Florida.

A new book about the candid opinions of his father, former President George H.W. Bush, has become a distraction and a reminder of the unpopular presidency of his brother, George W. Bush.

Bush's slide in the polls has created an opening for other establishment contenders, according to Republican strategist Ford O'Connell.

"I think that Jeb Bush was the person they thought was mostly likely to do it,” O'Connell said. “But now the jury is out on Jeb Bush and it is giving a real opportunity to Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and Ohio Gov. John Kasich."

The success so far of Trump and Carson demonstrates the power of appeal of political outsiders. But there is doubt about how long they might survive once the primary and caucus voting begins on Feb. 1 in Iowa.

There is also an intense battle for the support of mainstream or establishment Republicans, largely among Jeb Bush, Chris Christie and Ohio Gov. John Kasich. "There will be a viable insider establishment candidate who can still win this nomination just based on long term and recent history of the Republican Party," said American University presidential historian Allan Lichtman."They tend to love these mavericks but they never nominate them."

But the competition between the Republican outsider and establishment wing is resolved, it will be important for the party to come back together once the primaries are over and a nominee is chosen, said John Fortier of the Bipartisan Policy Center in Washington. "There is a divide. There is an outsider caucus and one that for Republicans to win, they will have to put that caucus or coalition back together."


Real estate-related services (paid category)

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8725-12/23/15

Real estate brokers and agents (paid category)


Rich Coast Rollover
Thinking of Buying a Vacation or Retirement Home
in Costa Rica?

Rich Coast Realty is a full-service real estate company with property listings in Escazú, Santa Ana, Jacó, Esterillos, Bejuco, Palo Seco, Manuel Antonio, and beyond. We offer efficient, personalized service always protecting our client’s interests. We work hard to find you the property of your dreams, and assist with legal advice, residency, starting corporations, opening bank accounts, etc. Contact us today with your questions about buying property in, and relocating to Costa Rica. With 11 years experience in Costa Rica real estate, we look forward to hearing from you.
USA Toll Free 1 866 833-4005
CR Cell 011 506 8718-9891
Brendan@RichCoastRealty.com
www.RichCoastRealty.com
8790-2/28/15

Penthouse condominium in Playa Langosta, Tamarindo
Photo montage of penthouse
Are you  tired of wasting time searching your home….. with no results?
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Penthouse condominium in Playa Langosta, Tamarindo

* Located on 6th floor.
* Elevator.
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* Pool, BBQ area.
* 2 underground
        parking,  cellar.

* 3 bedrooms.
* 2 bathrooms.
* 2 terraces.
* Luxuriously
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8609-2/20/16

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Re/Max Ocean Surf and Sun:

The experts in buying property in Costa Rica, with more than 20 years experience and the largest networked team of agents in the country.  We can help you learn if investing in Costa Rica is right for you with our low-key, educational approach to sales. Our professional agents can tell you more about sCosta Rica properties, including condos, homes, lots and commercial real estate.  Call us: Ocean Surf and Sun Int. Realty Ldta at 011 (506) 2653-0073 or send us an email at: info@remax-oceansurf-cr.com
8583-1/27/16

Real estate for sale (paid category)


Fonseca two
Lovely east coast property for sale
This is a huge property surrounded by beautiful tropical gardens. The house is about 85% built, but I will give you the property completely finished.  The whole land includes 7,886 m2 or 84,884 ft2 of forest and gardens in a mountain area of Cimarrones, Limón, east coast. Full house with large master bedroom plus bathroom. One extra guest bedroom. Large dining room. Large kitchen area. Another extra bathroom for guests. Large laundry room and two cellars (storage areas). The house has wide corridors where you will see a breathtaking view of large gardens and forest.  I am open to hear your offer. The full property and land price is $125,000. Call Harold Fonseca, Phone number (506) 8702-4217, Email: hfonseca24@gmail.com
8847-112/10/15

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


Goetl in Palo Seco

Charming small oceanfront hotel for sale in Playa Palo Seco
Ideal oceanfront location with back up to a mangrove estuary. The
charming small hotel has a fully equipped kitchen, bar and restaurant and is exceptionnally well maintained. Located on a very private beach of the central Pacific Coast of Costa Rica 35 minutes north of Quepos-Manuel Antonio and 45 minutes south of  Playa Jacó. The main building is a two-storey house with 12 bedrooms. The lot measures 3,054 M2. Beautiful gardens around the large pool and exceptional flora and fauna. Well mentioned in tourist guides like Lonely Planet and Guide Ulysse. Offered at $999,000. USD
e-mail:  marietta234@yahoo.es 
or call (506) 8707-1037  (506) 2778-8408
Web   http://mariettedaignault.point2agent.com
8843-1/2/16

Cohen
For sale 5,200 m2 Escazú
Fantastic location for condo, hotel, restaurant.
Large lower lot, incredible views. Flexible zoning.
Easy to get liquor license. Low interest financing.
www.hotel4salecostarica.com
www.hotelsescazu.com
hotelescazu@aol.com
Toll free US phone 877-778-8515
410-975-6703
In Costa Rica 8307-0164
8828-12/19/15

Pacific Sur montagee

These 2 lots are in the Pacific southern zone,
Tres Rio/Coronado de Osa. 

Will give a great deal on one of these lots, only $29,990.  Both of these lots have water, phone lines, Internet accessibility, electricity, easy 3 kms. access to the Costanera.  2-wheel drive accessible.  Close to new hospital, beautiful beaches and county services.  Financing available.   Lote 234, This corner lote is excellently located in lower Tres Rios.  Has 2 well-sculptured lots for 2 houses or one for multiunit cabins.  Lote 236,  1 1/2 hectare.  Big lote for building a grand house, with a smaller plantel for a cabin.  Small ocean view with great sunsets.  Watch the videos for more information, Planos,  and details.   Email: escapetyranny2cr@gmail.com. CR phone   2786-5555. USA call  760-536-4717 YouTube link for more real estate deals. 
8827-11/19/15

Escazu villa
Escazú villa. spectacular 360 degree city and mountain views.
Enjoy the sunsets along with the sunrise

There are special properties, which are more than mere houses. Where you can appreciate moments where you build memories. Relaxing reading in the garden of 5000 sq. m. Places to enjoy moments with family or friends with large heated pool. Beautiful city views of San José with mountain view. Places, where you can enjoy the comforting warmth of the sun throughout the day with cool nights of living 1,300 meters up on your own Mountain Noel. You are away from all the noise of San José, yet you are only 15 minutes drive there. Costa Rica largest mall is also only 15-minutes drive away.
The main house four bedrooms with four bathrooms, large office with built-in wood cabinets, and beautiful hardwood ceilings throughout the whole house. The main house is 330 sq. m. For your guest, there is a self-contained apartment of 100 sq. m. consisting of two bedrooms and two baths. Nice layout with a living room and dining room and kitchen all have views. For being so near to the city and to have that much land is once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. The selling price is land value will throw in the house and the apartment. Price is $690,000. Contact jamescorreo@gmail.com.
8824-11/15/15

Osa home
Costa Rica Tropical Paradise Beach House For Sale
Tropical 5-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 km south of Puerto Jiménez on the way to Matapalo and Corcovado National Park. Great Price $775,000. Contact: osaroger@gmail.com
Watch this video for full details.
8816-1/2/16

montage
Big House for Sale in Playa Grande,
Santa Cruz, Guanacaste
834.62 square meters property with 326 square meters construction. Two-storey house with front porch, entry lobby, living room, dinning room, large kitchen, breakfast room, large cupboard, 3 ½ bathrooms, 3 large bedrooms, the main bedroom includes jacuzzi and balcony. Playground, office, laundry area, garage for two cars, own and municipal potable water supply, electricity service, cable TV system, A/C. Located 700 meters from Las Colinas Golf Course, near the airport, Tamarindo Beach and the best beaches of the country. Excellent construction and great details. Price $349,000. 2,866.33 square meters building lot with three terraces. Price $75,000. For more information, please contact us:
Email stanleystephendorn@yahoo.com Phone (506) 2653-6417.
Cell (506) 8825-8942 / (506) 8916-0734.
8789-11/27/15

private ranch home
Small private ranch for sale
This exceptional private ranch sits on a 9+ hectare lot and supports 15-20 horses. Only 2 hours south of San José, on the road to Puriscal. Roomy stalls all with drains, water hookup, lights and fans, grooming and shoeing área. Two-story house all furnished and cowboy house. Don't miss your chance on that turnkey operation.  Offered at $749,000.
E-mail:  marietta234@yahoo.es  or call (506) 8707-1037 
(506) 2778-8408 Web:   http://mariettedaignault.point2agent.com
8823-11/23/15

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   Check out slide show HERE!
8736-1/1/16

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: 8824-8113 or 8725-8176.  Email:  angelsdad@me.com
8779-10/24/15

Pavones
Aerial Ocean and Volcano Views with Boutique Coffee! 33 Acres $380,000. Click HERE!
8822-11/12/15

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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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San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2015, Vol. 16, No. 222
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Latin news from the BBC up to the minute
Anti-vaccination Web sites mix fear
with positive behaviors, study finds


By the Johns Hopkins University
Bloomberg School of Public Health news staff

A content analysis of nearly 500 anti-vaccination Web sites found that over two-thirds used what they represented as scientific evidence to support the idea that vaccines are dangerous and nearly one-third contained anecdotes that reinforced the perception.

The sites contained a considerable amount of misinformation and pseudoscience, with more than two-thirds suggesting that vaccines were dangerous, just under two-thirds suggesting they cause autism and just over four in 10 claiming vaccines cause brain injury. More than two-thirds used what they represented as scientific evidence that in fact was not, while about three in 10 used anecdotes to support these claims.

The sites also promoted positive behaviors, including eating healthy (18.5 percent of them), eating organic (5.2 percent) and breast feeding (5.5 percent).

"The biggest global takeaway is that we need to communicate to the vaccine-hesitant parent in a way that resonates with them and is sensitive to their concerns," says Meghan Moran, associate professor in the Bloomberg School's Department of Health, Behavior and Society and lead author of the study. "In our review, we saw communication for things we consider healthy, such as breast feeding, eating organic, the types of behavior public health officials want to encourage. I think we can leverage these good things and reframe our communication in a way that makes sense to those parents resisting vaccines for their children."

For their study, researchers looked at sites with content about childhood vaccines but did not break out their analysis by individual vaccine. They searched four search engines, Google, Bing, Yahoo and Ask Jeeves, using terms like "immunization dangers" and "vaccine danger" and others identified using Google Trends.

After eliminating duplicates, they had a mix of personal Web sites and blogs, Facebook pages and health Web sites. A team of four coded the content for the vaccine misinformation presented, the source of the vaccine misinformation and the types of persuasive tactics used. The staffers also coded for behaviors and values promoted by the Web sites that could help vaccine promotion efforts develop better-targeted materials.


Newcomers have sales event Sunday

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Newcomer's Club of Costa Rica plans its holiday shopping event,  Navidad en Noviembre, Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Cariari Country Club.

The event is free and open to the public, although most who attend end up purchasing Christmas gifts.


Man is suspected of robbing a 9 year old

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Fuerza Pública officers in  Alajuelita said Monday that they had detained a man who robbed a cell telephone from a 9 year old.

The robbery happened in the Parque Central where police routinely patrol.

The 22-year-old man fell into police hands shortly after the robbery was reported. Police said they recovered the telephone and remanded the man to the flagrancy court.

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From Page 7:


Slowing world trade seen hurting growth

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Faltering international trade may slow global economic growth, according to Monday's report from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.  The organization says global expansion will slow 0.1 to 2.9 percent this year.

Chief Economist Catherine Mann called the further sharp downturn in trade and emerging market economies deeply concerning.  She noted these levels of trade have previously been associated with global recession.

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development is a leading global policy organization, which also predicted slightly faster growth next year.

The report attributed some of the slowdown in trade to changes in the worlds second-biggest economy.  China has seen imports slow as it evolves from an export-driven manufacturing economy to one more focused on domestic demand and services. 

Slowing demand for raw materials in China has hurt commodity prices in the many emerging economies that depend on this huge market.

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development says the U.S. economy will remain solid, growing at 2.4 percent this year and a little faster next year.  The authors say the strong dollar hurts U.S. growth by making exports more expensive to foreign buyers, but predict that drag will be outweighed by rising private investment.  The organization also suggested that U.S. central bank proceed with a slight increase in interest rates that has been under discussion for some time. 

U.S. Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen and other top Fed officials give public speeches this week, and experts publish data on the health of the U.S. job market, inflation, retail sales, and consumer confidence.