Tuesday 27 July 2021

Once Again the Train has Left the Station – Says Q

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 Without either comment or judgment, I have been very quiet on the Chinchilla – “airplane of shame” and the cast of players, including a former soccer player, Rolando Fonseca.

In this case, it is just too easy to point the finger and say, “him,” her” and “them”.

In a simplified conclusion: If the Presidenta, Laura Chinchilla would have told the legislature as the law requires, “I am leaving the country to attend a wedding in Peru for the son of my vice president,” nobody would have opened this can of worms.

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After all, she used that same private jet, provided by the same (alleged) villains to attend the funeral of Hugo Chavez in Venezuela and not a peep from the press.

But this time, she did not do that! Only after the wheels were off the ground did the press know she had left Costa Rica.

It was her weekend, her personal trip and one that probably ended in a dance, a toast, some talk and finally a 45 minute inconsequential meeting with the president of Peru. It’s just that she did not obtain permission from the legislature to fly away and the plane is owned by a highly questionable company and man where the word “narco” comes into play. A word that Costa Ricans deplore.

Just when we believe this is finally the end of the overwhelming scandals of the Chinchilla presidency, along comes one more, bigger and better than the last.

Sincerely, I believed nothing was going to top the Isla Calero, La Trocha, the road to San Ramon and let us not forget Karina Bolaños, Vice Minister of Youth’s semi-nude photos and hot sex tape….but the narco airplane ride to Peru is the daddy, if not the mother of all scandals and is good for at least two weeks of teeth sucking and “bad” talk which will result in “nada”; nothing since there is no impeachment process in Costa Rica. If there was, I suspect that doña Laura would be long gone from office.

The Dirección de Inteligencia y Seguridad (DIS), Mauricio Boraschi, who got fired over this scandal along with the president’s personal advisor, Irene Pacheco plus the Minister of Communications, Chacon, never followed up on the investigation of the airplane donator, Gabriel Morales who indeed used a false name to introduce himself and all the while knowing, or should have known, Morales was under scrutiny in his native born country Colombia. He In fact married an 18 year old Costa Rican girl and became a nationalized citizen, yet has been under investigation for both money laundering and drug trafficking since 2011. However, remember that as a Costa Rican citizen, you cannot be extradited.

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A clever move by Morales, sometimes known as O’Fallon.

However, once again after the train left the station and all this becomes a sudden priority.The concept of due diligence before the crisis has as yet to reach Costa Rica.

Most certainly we are not ready to achieve the Chinchilla quest of becoming a member of the developed world country club. And, that might be okay with me.

I sincerely believe that we have created an entire culture of corruption and greed in Pura Vida and it will remain the staple of this country for years to come.

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“It is all about me, the center of the universe,” Dr, William Wright of UCLA, said many times over when cut off in traffic or after being snubbed in a restaurant, almost like his mantra.

A once a proud nation far more civilized yet tangibly less developed than the 1st world, Costa Rica stood out and was respected for what it was, even with its limitations because we were what the world expected us to be: We were safe, peaceful, sustainable, eco correct to a fault and a power in the development of clean energy. The country certainly was not known as a narco-traffic hub, a global warehouse for cocaine, violence, the drug bridge between the U.S., and Colombia…no, this was not Costa Rica. And back then we never could imagine Pura Vida as we are now.

What doña Laura, et al did was nothing more than what can now be expected as the norm.

We have become a country that has adopted other Central American nation’s values and find ourselves in a morally defensive position on both an international level as well as domestic.

Reading the printed comments of La Nación and CR Hoy.Com written by Costa Ricans, the nation is up to its proverbial ears with poor management, naivety, stupidity, crime and paybacks. There are literally almost hundreds of negative comments and it is the people who take the time and make the effort to speak-up and publish.

Expats should not sit on their hands and ask, “Where are we going?” To protect your investments, to protect your residencies, to seek honesty, we need to speak up and make our voices heard as well.

Again, if publishing comments is too much, I urge everyone not to invest, try and reduce expenses if you have invested and understand that like the Ticos we also will not tolerate gifts of the corrupt. Before our wallets open further we want to see progress, a national sense of pride and a government that is not either naïve nor simply dumb…




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Juan Sebastian Campos
An expat from the U.S., educator and writer in English and Spanish since 1978 with a doctorate in business administrations (DBA) from the United States and Germany. A feature writer for ABC News, Copley Press and the Tribune Group with emphasis on Central America.

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