Tuesday 28 March 2023

The Alternative Fact” Of The ‘Platina’

Paying the bills


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25 March 2023 - At The Banks - BCCR

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This is what the bridge will look like, if it ever gets finished.

TICO BULL by Rico – It’s been a while since I have posted anything here, February 8 to be exact. You see I have been busy, busy sitting in traffic all caused by the damn ‘platina’ bridge.

Before the closure of this all important bridge traffic around the San Jose area was no picnic. But since, the yahoos at the ministry that doesn’t do anything closed half the bridge and then split the two remaining lanes to one in each direction, “calvario” the Spanish word for ‘siege’ is the only way to describe conditions.

I have spent an additional two hours or more in my daily routine just sitting in traffic. For those who know me or have followed me here, know I live in Santa Ana. A trip to Pricesmart in Escazu, for example, is less than 7 minutes, normally.

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Over the last couple of week the same trip took more than 20 minutes. Getting to Lagunilla in Heredia, a 15 minute drive at 2:00am, took more than one hour in the mornings and more than 90 minutes in the afternoons.

The ‘platina’ bridge re-construction from the bottom up

Fortunately, the gig getting me on the roads in the morning and afternoons ended. I am back to normal. But I feel for the drivers who have to do it every single morning to get to and from work.

What is the point of my drivel? The insult to injury that was yesterday, the fricking minister that can’t get anything moving, promised, yes, promised, the platina would be ready by April 30.

This is the same minister that promised the bridge would be ready by the end of February or he would quit.

His boss, the President, you know the guy who spends more time travelling abroad that taking care of things at home, called him on it, at the beginning of last year, pointing his finger to his minister before the television camers, said firmly, “this is on you”. See the video from February 2016.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EVjRklb0CWI]

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Everyone except all those at the ministry of non-transport knew that no way the bridge would be ready on February 28. Or March 8. Or March 15, the last assured date before the last one yesterday.

It didn’t take an engineering degree or even completing grade school to know that the work was not far enough advance to even come close to the March 15 date. I still doubt April 30 is a realistic date.

Back to the minister quitting.

Last November, the first hurricane ever touched land. Hurricane Otto caused destruction. It was said machinery and manpower was diverted from the work at the bridge to meet the emergency. Understandable.

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This also gave the President a way out from firing his minister, his third during his almost three-year term. Blame it on the hurricane to cause delays at the platina. Minister gets a hall pass.

But, wait, is the work at the platina being carried out by a private contractor? So, I ask, what is the private contract machinery and manpower doing in Upala? And if that was the case, wouldn’t work have stopped completely at the platina? It didn’t.

As far as I can tell there was no public explanation of that, no list of what machinery and equipment was derailed from the platina project. Or what manpower was missing and for how long.

This is the land of Pura Vida.This is how things are done here. Politicians promise. We believe them even though we know they are giving up the ‘alternative facts’. Life goes. We adapt.

Article originally appeared on Tico Bull and is republished here with permission.

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"Rico" is the crazy mind behind the Q media websites, a series of online magazines where everything is Q! In these times of new normal, stay at home. Stay safe. Stay healthy.

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