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Allanamientos sobre supuestas irregularidades en Pandeportes

Video por el Ministerio Público.

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Richardson & Bendib, Abortion laws and inequality

Laws restricting reproductive freedom come out of a culture that doesn’t see women’s sexuality as equal to men’s. Cartoon by Khalil Bendib — OtherWords.

The disparity behind anti-abortion laws

by Jill Richardson — OtherWords

In the past few weeks, my Facebook feed has exploded with posts about abortion. If you use Facebook, probably yours has too.

There’s a lot to say about abortion, especially now that Georgia, Alabama, Missouri, and Ohio have passed extremely restrictive laws banning abortions in cases where they previously would be legal. But I think there’s a bigger picture to look at too.

The bigger picture is women’s sexuality. Straight men’s sexuality is treated as more legit than women’s. The differences start at a young age.

How many families teach boys the correct names for their genitals, but do not do the same for little girls? Some families simply do not talk about female genitalia, or they call it something euphemistic (I’ve heard “privates,” “bottom,” and even “front butt”).

Consider the movie Pitch Perfect 2, in which a fictional a cappella group gets in trouble after Rebel Wilson accidentally flashes President Obama. In the film, the incident is reported on the news, but the very name of the body part is portrayed as so taboo that the news bleeps it out.

Little boys talk about their penises openly, and later they discuss masturbation and even porn with one another. While parents might not want their preteen or teen boys consuming porn, they often shrug off boys’ expressions of sexuality because “boys will be boys.”

In sex ed at home and at school, girls learn about avoiding sexual harassment and assault, pregnancy, and diseases. It’s taken for granted that men want and enjoy sex and that they will be the sexual aggressors. Often not discussed? Women’s desire for sex and sexual pleasure.

Science on female sexual pleasure is lacking because funders of science saw it as a frivolous topic to study. Many women experience pain during sex and are often written off by doctors.

How are women supposed to enter safely and healthily into sexual relationships when they are taught from the start that their sex organs are so shameful they are unspeakable? And that their role in sexual relationships is saying “no” until someday, at an appropriate time (once they are married?), they will say yes and then everything will magically fall into place?

Author Linda Kay Klein wrote about how impossible it is for women to simply shut down their sexuality for years and then, once married, instantly turn it back on again.

Men regulating women’s bodies through restrictive abortion laws is the tip of an iceberg in which women’s sexuality is stigmatized, de-legitimized, silenced, controlled, and misunderstood, even by women themselves.

Women and girls try to walk the impossible line between being seen as a prude or a slut, while hookup culture makes young straight women feel they need to give men access to their bodies in hopes that eventually the man may want to start a relationship. Sociologists study the “pleasure gap” in which men are more likely to climax than women in heterosexual sexual encounters.

Banning abortion denies women autonomy over their own bodies and treats women as if they lack the agency to know what is best for themselves. So does this larger picture of how society treats women’s sexuality.

Raising girls who understand and do not feel shame for normal, healthy sexuality — and boys who see women as sexual agents in their own right, not objects for male pleasure — is a first step toward reducing sexual assault and unwanted pregnancy.

And towards raising a generation of young people who will be capable of creating smarter policies around reproductive rights and health.


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Editorial: Trump’s envoy incites anti-Chinese racism here

Top of the title page of the most infamous work of Panamanian racism.
In 1941 Panamanians of Chinese descent were among those stripped of citizenship.

Donald Trump sees urgent business to do in Panama, above and beyond retrieving the management contract for the hotel and condo complex in Punta Pacifica that he lost in bankruptcy proceedings in the US federal court for the Southern District of New York. His big priorities are to overthrow the governments of Venezuela and Nicaragua, and to draft the whole world into his economic war with China. So he sent this hardcore right-wing Cuban-American fanatic, Mauricio Claver-Carone, to be his special envoy with messages for outgoing President Varela, President-Elect Cortizo, the Panamanian public via the Debate Abierto television show, Panama Canal administrator Jorge Quijano and various reputed economic and political power brokers here.

The conversations with Varela and Cortizo were separate. The reported plea with Varela was for Panamanian participation in the overthrow of the governments of Venezuela and Nicaragua. With Cortizo the discussions were reportedly more general. In all discussions an attack on the Chinese was salient. Claver-Carone demanded that Panama prevent tankers carrying Venezuelan oil to China from passing through the canal, notwithstanding the treaty on canal neutrality. He warned about sinister military purposes in Huawei cell phones and communications networks. Without making any competing US offers, he warned against doing business with the Chinese in general.

And he told Panamanians to be “very cautious about Chinese tourists.”

Claver-Carone not only heads the ultra-rightist US-Cuba Democracy PAC that Trump is counting on for help in carrying Florida in 2020. He is not only an international radio show host. He is not only a former US Treasury Department lawyer. He is also a professor of law at the Catholic University of America and at George Washington University. He well knows the long history of anti-Chinese racism in Panama. He knows that this racism was once embedded in our constitution.

Claver-Carone, and Donald Trump, know the race card they are playing. They are appealing to Panamanians to look with suspicion not only against Chinese tourists, but against every Panamanian who looks Chinese.

Panama has laws against foreigners coming here and preaching racism. These should be invoked. Claver-Carone ought to be declared persona non grata. Let him preach racism in Miami, but not in Panama.


Protesters at the Minnesota state capitol. Photo by Lorie Shaull.

Bear in mind…

Beware the fury of a patient man.


One thing life has taught me: if you are interested, you never have to look for new interests. They come to you. When you are genuinely interested in one thing, it will always lead to something else.

Eleanor Roosevelt


I am certain there is too much certainty in the world.
Michael Crichton



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Varela slaps down business groups’ constitutional scheme

“The Constitution belongs to the Panamanian people. It does not belong to a party or to an elected president or to an outgoing president. The constitutional debate belongs to four million Panamanians.” Photo by the Presidencia of Varela at the May 21 dedication of the Museum of Freedom and Democracy. His statements on the constitution came later that day at an appearance with President-Elect Cortizo at the C5 National Security Center.

Varela rebukes Chamber of Commerce, rejects call for special legislative session

by Eric Jackson

The elite business groups’ move to make undisclosed amendments to Panama’s constitution seems to have failed. The plan was to get the current National Assembly and then the incoming one after its July 1 inauguration to pass the Chamber or Commerce (CCIAP) and National Private Enterprise Council’s (CoNEP’s) reported but never published 27 pages of constitutional changes.

The regular sessions of the current legislature ended on April 30 and for a special session to take up the matter, there would have to be a presidential call for this. Starting on Monday, May 27 the assembly will be called into special session for about a dozen different things — lame duck appointments, ratification of what was an illegal contract that after changes of hands is now the basis for the huge copper project in Donoso and so on.

However, President Juan Carlos Varela, in remarks during a May 21 visit with President-Elect Nito Cortizo and incoming National Security Minister Rolando Mirones to the C5 National Security Center, that he would not put constitutional changes on the agenda.

Under Panama’s constitution a special legislative session may only consider things put on its agenda by the president. The business groups’ plan is thus dead.

Varela, whose family owns and runs Panama’s biggest liquor distilling business, has had strained relations with the Chamber of Commerce in particular for some time. You won’t find in his statements any acknowledgement that the Chamber represents “business” in general. (It doesn’t — where are the Chinese merchants, or the informal micro-businesses, or the nonwhite majority of business owners in the photos of Chamber of Commerce events?) And in rejecting the Chamber’s demand, Varela took a scolding tone telling Chamber of Commerce president Jorge Juan de la Guardia to:

Focus on economic issues and specific issues of economic reactivation. On issues of state policy, I think it is important to be led by the whole society, together with the authorities.

Varela’s own proposal to put the subject of convening a constitutional convention on the May 5 ballot was killed by a legislative committee, at the urging of the CCIAP and CoNEP. There was no political debt to be repaid, unless one wants to look at Varela’s position as payback.

Cortizo supported the CCIAP and CoNEP process and he will be the next president, but he comes in having won but one-third of the popular vote. Without the previous legislature giving the new one a proposal to ratify, any constitutional process would have to start anew. Historically, that’s a problem for presidents, an opportunity for people and parties that don’t get along with one another on other matters to join forces to vote against whatever the president with only a plurality mandate proposes. The president who loses a vote like that tends to become a lame duck, although in Cortizo’s case he would probably maintain a working legislative majority.

Call Varela what people may, a fake populist or a real one, just another oligarch or a different sort of one, a pathetic failure or a man of principle, he was systemic and categorical in his rejection of constitutional change by stealth, but an unelected group who have only wealth and surnames as their credentials. Beyond the warning that the public business is not to be privatized by relatively small groups, Varela also made the pragmatic argument about the two legislature approach to changing the constitution at this time:

I have ruled out that possibility. I feel that the constitutional issue deserves a much broader debate than doing something in 40 days. That would not be the right thing for the Panamanian people, who always hope for a new constitution and the improvement of the political system so as to improve their quality of life.

Back to the drawing board? Likely nobody is going to listen to the CCIAP or CoNEP about things constitutional for at least a little while. Cortizo has some political calculations, which he might offload onto someone else by along with the legislature calling for a constitutional convention and leaving it and its work to those delegates that may be elected and to the voters. He might take the risk of submitting particular changes to the voters in a referendum.

Then there are the usual dissidents and independents, now organizing as the Citizens United for a Constituent Assembly (CUCO) and contemplating a petition drive to force the question to the referendum.

The ultimate checks, balances and dangers are that if there is such a convention, whether originating as in the delegates taking charge of all government branches or parallel as in the delegates drafting what they will and perhaps having to put up with the president, legislature or courts interfering with their work, is that if the voters don’t like the end product they can vote “no” and end the process.

Bernal's take
CUCO leader Miguel Antonio Bernal’s take on the situation.

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The Panama News blog links, May 21, 2019


The Panama News blog links

a Panama-centric selection of other people’s work
una selección Panamá-céntrica de las obras de otras personas

Canal, Maritime & Transportation / Canal, Marítima & Transporte

Freight Waves, Draft restrictions cut PanCanal cargo loads by one-fifth

La Prensa, De Saint Malo retire su nombre como directora de la ACP

La Estrella, En octubre estará operativa la Terminal de Cruceros en Amador 

Seatrade: Hamburg Süd expands in Central America, Caribbean and South America

Sports / Deportes

El Siglo, Johan Camargo un pelotero clave para los Bravos

Loop Jamaica: Jamaican women 3, Panamanians 1

Sookenews, Panamanian midfielder Alexander González signs to play in Canada

TVN, Concacaf publicó la lista de 40 jugadores de la selección de Panamá

Economy / Economía

La Prensa, Minera exportará concentrado de cobre desde junio

Newsroom Panama, Panama exports plummet in first quarter

El País, México pretende poner fin a la evasión fiscal de grandes contribuyentes

CNBC, US business debt rising but Fed chair thinks it’s not serious

Science & Technology / Ciencia & Tecnología

Nature, STRI maps dry season soil water potential on Barro Colorado Island plot

BBC, ¿Qué es el Corredor Seco?

The Guardian, Google blocks Android updates to Huawei

El Capital Financiero, Aún no identifican la plaga que afecta a los árboles de marañón

BBC, Scientists say why we should appreciate wasps

El Siglo, ‘El cambio climático llegó y tenemos que prepararnos’

News / Noticias

La Estrella, Diputados independientes forman una bancada

US State Department, Pompeo’s phone call to Cortizo

La Prensa, Tribunal Electoral recibe por menos 20 impugnaciones

Mongabay, Indigenous women unite against Bolsonaro

Truthout, Abortion: the “Auntie Network” already exists

El Nuevo Día, El chef José Andrés exalta a cocinera despedida por regalar almuerzo

Daily Kos, While anti-vaxxers throw measles parties 1,200 dead in Madagascar 

Coutto, A beginner’s guide to the European elections

Opinion / Opiniones

Roubini, The global consequences of a Sino-American Cold War

Baker, Trump’s trade war with China is waged to make the rich richer 

Varoufakis, A Greek canary in a global gold mine

Majority Report, Mexico in the era of AMLO (video with Laura Carlsen)

López Levy, Why Trump’s Cuba policy is so wrong

Boff, Love in times of rage and hatred

Blades, El silencio del después

Sagel, Marca país

Culture / Cultura

La Nación, Cien Años de Margot Fonteyn

Xinhua, World championship of medieval combat held near Kiev

The Guardian, Sting & Shaggy: pop-reggae odd couple are far from boombastic

Ms., What growing up X taught Ilyasah Shabazz about feminism

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Bernal, Constitutional con

coin toss
Heads we win, tails you lose! ICMA photo.

Reforms that are less than meet the eye

by Miguel Antonio Bernal

Constitutional Law teaches us that “reforming” the Constitution means altering something in its articles without changing its essence or substance. The militarist constitution in force since 1972 has been reformed four times, but its reforms have not been able to strip it of its authoritarian barracks origins, nor of its essential oppostion to citizen participation.

This time the so-called “Concertación” concurs to claim, again, based on a text proposed by a good number of those who participated in the imposition of ‘72 and several who have been present, by action or omission, in the previous reforms behind the citizens’ back, to reform so as not to change.

The main feature of what has been presented so far? They’ll dress up the monkey in silk. There are no real proposals, no constitutional innovations, no updates, nothing corrected, nothing explained.

This is extremely worrying given that they confirm for us that in Panama what they call democracy has degenerated into an oligocracy dominated by kleptomaniacs. These people haven’t the least disposition to give up the control they have over political power. It matters even less to them whether we have a democratic constitutional government in which it is understood and perceived that power is based in the people, that there is what they say.

The methodology used for these deceptive reforms sets aside human dignity, whose respect and protection is supposed to be a fundamental obligation of the state. That’s enshrined in the basic principles of treaties to which Panama is a party but ignored by the scriveners of this new deception.

One of the main teachings of the glorious French Revolution of 1789, which the deceivers would have us forget, establishes that “The constituent power can do everything and is not subject to any prior constitution.” That is why they resort to all the tricks, sophisms, fallacies and deceptions in their uncompromising desire to prevent the empowerment of citizens to fully exercise their rights, to deny citizens the protection of all the guarantees.

That is why we must bear in mind how urgent it is to demand a participatory constituent process, so that we can have the true rebirth that the country requires.


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Gandasegui, Where’s Nito going?

Varela & Cortizo
Juan Carlos Varela and Nito Cortizo. Photo from Cortizo’s Twitter feed.

Where’s Nito going? Seguro Social, the Panama Canal and Venezuela

by Marco A. Ganásegui, hijo

When Laurentino Cortizo was proclaimed president-elect, he reiterated in his speech his intention to stick to a neo-liberal government program, similar to all governments following the US military invasion in 1989. It means more privatizations, greater flexibility in worker-employer relations, and deregulation of public functions public-private initiatives’).

In the field of foreign policy at one moment in the campaign he mentioned his intention to review the free trade treaty with the United States, especially in reference to the section on agriculture. Moreover, he indicated the possibility of respecting the right of self-determination for people who are in a confrontation with the USA.

There are indications from te Cortizo and PRD camps that these two proposals will be difficult to carry out. He appointed his vice-president-elect, Juan Gabriel Carrizo, a young businessman who was his private assistant, to head the transition team with the outgoing president. The composition of that team, and the upcoming appointments to the future cabinet, will define more clearly the direction that the new president will take starting July 1, 2019.

The political parties that ran against Cortizo in the recent elections have not commented on the president-elect’s plans. All of them appear to be deeply involved in internal reconstruction tasks on their respective houses. Outgoing ruling party, the Panameñistas, will convene a special convention to restructure the organization’s leadership. Cambio Democratico (CD), is concerned about the unfolding trial of former President Ricardo Martinelli. The Broad Front for Democracy (FAD) is analyzing its unfavorable election results.

In a meeting held by the Panamanian unions the problem of the Social Security Fund (CSS) was raised, which for years has been poorly managed and, according to its directors, is in a financial situation close to bankruptcy. A union spokesman pointed out that the CSS has to return to the solidarity system that governed until the 2005 pension system changes.

President-elect Cortizo mentioned social security as one of his government priorities. However, his approach does not seem to match that of the workers. Cortizo met with the outgoing president, Juan Carlos Varela, to begin the transfer of power. Before leaving Varela wants the Assembly to approve the appointments of a magistrate in the Supreme Court of Justice and a director in the Panama Canal Authority (ACP). It will be very difficult for that to happen given the correlation of party forces in the legislature.

The Panama Canal was one of the issues that was not discussed during the election campaign. Since 1994 when the economic powers that be agreed to introduce a constitutional amendment on the canal, the issue has been out of bounds. Only the protests of the workers and the corruption scandals on the board of directors are considered newsworthy. However, recent statements by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo about the melting of the Arctic and the opening of new routes connecting East Asia with the markets of the North Atlantic should attract the attention of the new ruler. The announcement highlights the need to create a scientific commission to thoroughly study global warming and its impact on the Panama Canal’s commercial future.

It must be clear that the interoceanic route can’t be discussed with the United States. On many occasions — and its current administration has been forceful — Washington has said that its national interests are not to be negotiated. In the 1970s, however, Panama managed to put the waterway’s transfer on the US agenda, along with the evacuation of its military bases and the end of the Canal Zone. We must demand that Pompeo first consult with Panama before making statements about the future of maritime trade between the Pacific and the Atlantic.

Cortizo referred to Venezuela and mentioned the creation of something similar to the Contadora Group, which was created by General Torrijos to deal with the conflict in Nicaragua in the 1970s. The initiative would not be for a ‘regime change’ that Trump wants, but to find a solution to the conflict. The proposal would replace the United States (via the OAS and the Lima group) as a central actor in a war against Venezuela and would put Latin America in a central role in the solution to the conflict.



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Beluche, ¿Mal augurio?

la vaina usual
La política de la calle, como siempre. Foto por Polo Ciudadano.

Una elección plagada de irregularidades, ¿mal augurio?

por Olmedo Beluche – Polo Ciudadano

En treinta años desde que se instauró el actual régimen político panameño, sobre los cadáveres y las ruinas de la invasión norteamericana de 1989, nunca se había hecho tan evidente su carácter antidemocrático y fraudulento, nunca habían quedado al desnudo los métodos mafiosos y el clientelismo de los partidos que pactaron las reglas del juego bajo la tutela del Comando Sur y el Pentágono.

Los hechos…

Las irregularidades empiezan desde la vigencia de un Código Electoral sustentado sobre el poder del dinero, el clientelismo y la hegemonía de los partidos políticos fundantes del régimen político: PRD, Panameñista, Molirena a los que se ha sumado desde hace 15 años Cambio Democrático.

A lo que hay que agregar el poder de los grandes medios de comunicación dominados por dos grupos empresariales, que coinciden en la junta directiva de un banco, que actúan como verdaderos fabricantes de ilusiones, manipuladores de imágenes, vendedores de políticos y no tan sutiles difamadores cuando les conviene. Pero esto es lo de siempre, aunque no es tan evidente para el ciudadano de a pie.

Lo novedoso de la elección de 2019 es que, iniciado el conteo, hacia las 4:00 p.m., el candidato que todos los medios daban por ganador por más de 10 puntos, Laurentino Cortizo del PRD, empezó a aparecer en las pantallas virtualmente empatado con el segundo en intención de voto, Rómulo Roux, de Cambio Democrático. Empate que se mantuvo hasta casi la media noche con el supuesto conteo extraoficial de más del 90% de las urnas.

En el interín, hacia las 6:00 p.m. el candidato Rómulo Roux denuncia que el distrito más populoso de la ciudad de Panamá, San Miguelito, se habían dejado de escrutar actas que contenían 50 mil votos a su favor, las cuales le daban supuestamente la victoria electoral y que no iba a reconocer el triunfo de nadie hasta que no se diera el recuento oficial del 100 % de las actas por la Junta Nacional de Escrutinio.

En algún momento de la noche del 5 de mayo, y en los días posteriores el Tribunal Electoral sacó de su web el sistema de Transmisión Extraoficial de Resultados (TER), por aparentes y evidentes inconsistencias, lo que acentuó la impresión en un sector de la ciudadanía de que se estaba cometiendo un fraude electoral. Hacia la medianoche los magistrados del Tribunal dan por ganador a Cortizo con una diferencia no mayor del 2% de los votos emitidos en el conteo extraoficial.

La siguiente sorpresa se dio al amanecer del 6 de mayo, cuando Roux aún no reconocía el triunfo de su oponente y esperaba el recuento oficial, llegó a los medios de comunicación el saludo del expresidente del país y fundador de Cambio Democrático, Ricardo Martinelli, al virtualmente electo Laurentino Cortizo. Martinelli, se encuentra preso en la cárcel El Renacer acusado de espionaje a sus opositores cuando fue presidente de la república.

Preguntas incómodas

¿Por qué Martinelli se adelanta a su candidato Roux en el reconocimiento de la derrota de su propio partido? Tal vez porque el maquiavelismo de la política panameña ya ha demostrado que asestar puñaladas por la espalda a sus copartidarios es una manera de pelear por el control del partido a futuro. Algunos se preguntan si, ¿habrán aprovechado Martinelli y sus abogados la incertidumbre de la noche del 5 de mayo para negociar el reconocimiento de Cortizo a cambio de su libertad?

Otros se preguntan cómo es posible que el Tribunal Electoral diga que el partido Cambio Democrático ganó en las provincias de Panamá, Panamá Oeste y Colón, que tienen casi el 70% de la población, pero perdió la elección presidencial.

La interpretación del resultado presidencial: la ciudadanía castigo al gobierno oligárquico de Varela dejando a su partido en cuarto lugar; parte del descontento se canalizó hacia los candidatos por libre postulación, con casi 25% de los votos emitidos; una pequeña vanguardia lo hizo por el único partido de izquierdas, el FAD, que sacó el 0,7% de los electores según el TER, aunque su dirigencia denuncia un fraude electoral para negarle el 2%, que habría obtenido en la franja de alcaldes, requerido para la subsistencia legal del partido.

Los sectores más pauperizados canalizaron su descontento a través de Cambio Democrático con la ilusión de que el martinelismo traería un gobierno que cree empleos y drene riqueza, que es el mito construido en torno a la figura del expresidente. Laurentino Cortizo, supuestamente ganó, no solo por estrecho margen, sino que el 75% de la ciudadanía no lo eligió.

Alteración, robo de actas y “chanchullerias”

Si esto sucedía en las presidenciales, en las elecciones a representantes de corregimientos, alcaldes y diputados salieron a la luz toda clase de malos manejos, manipulaciones hasta violencia en torno a los centros de votación y juntas circuitales. Desde días antes hubo denuncias de clientelismo con “regalos” de dinero, bolsas de comida y materiales de construcción, que son tradicionales en la política panameña.

El propio día de la votación, los grandes medios de comunicación rompieron la veda electoral y se sumaron a la campaña promoviendo algunos candidatos con entrevistas y declaraciones que claramente están prohibidas por la ley.

Mientras que el electorado castigó a un buen número de diputados cuestionados de corrupción que querían elegirse, sobre todo en circuitos uninominales, votando por nuevos figuras, aunque la mayoría de los partidos tradicionales; en los circuitos plurinominales, la aplicación anómala de la asignación de curules por cociente, mediocociente y residuos, permitió a algunos reelegirse mediante mañas que pueden ser calificadas de fraudulentas.

El PRD, que al inicio del conteo no tenía mayoría absoluta en la Asamblea Nacional, mediante estos métodos cuestionables se hizo con el control de más del 49% de las curules, y junto con su aliado Molirena se aseguró más del 55%. Las denuncias llovieron incluso de candidatos de su propio partido que se sintieron afectados por la manipulación de los números y de las actas para imponer a políticos de vieja data y muy desprestigiados.

Hubo protestas, agitación y quema de vehículos en el circuito 1-1, contra la reelección como diputado del presidente del PRD, Benicio Robinson; en la ciudad de Colón hubo denuncias de fraude contra la elección del alcalde del PRD; así mismo, hubo protestas y empujones en la designación de curules en los circuitos 8-6 y 8-7 de la ciudad de Panamá, donde hubo denuncias de manipulación de los residuos.

Lo que se trama…

El objetivo de estos cuestionables actos es imponer al presidente por el que el grueso de la burguesía panameña había demostrado preferencias, y luego darle estabilidad a un gobierno con una mayoría legislativa de dudosa honestidad para imponer las reformas neoliberales y antipopulares que se vienen y que la Cámara de Comercio ha exigido en su documento Agenda País 2019-2024.

Dos son las amenazas principales: por un lado, una reforma constitucional por la vía antidemocrática de que sean aprobadas por la actual y percibida como corrupta Asamblea Nacional y ratificada por la próxima, que toma posesión el 1 de julio, electa en las condiciones con las mañas que hemos descrito; por otro lado, se pretende una reforma contra el sistema de pensiones y jubilaciones y el sistema de salud, con afectación a los derechos de la clase trabajadora.

En política internacional, algunos “progresistas” latinoamericanos han creído ver en Cortizo un hombre de “izquierdas”, pero se equivocan. El PRD es un partido de centro derecha, neoliberal y controlado por la oligarquía panameña. Además de que el secretario de Estado, M. Pompeo, lo llamó y le leyó la cartilla a Cortizo, el cual, para el caso venezolano, lo pintan como “mediador”, pero ya reconoció a Juan Guaidó como presidente de ese país.

¿Qué hacer?

Es de Perogrullo la urgencia de la unidad popular para enfrentar el plan neoliberal que se trama. El Polo Ciudadano ha propuesto la necesidad de un gran Frente Popular de defensa de los derechos económicos y sociales, primer peldaño en la continuada construcción de una alternativa política, en la que el FAD sin duda debe estar incluido, pero también debe abarcar a otros sectores que, por diversos motivos, no estuvimos en esa propuesta.







¿Wappin? Seriously / En serio

Depression – not talking here about the fleeting sadness from life’s setbacks or tragedies but the profound and prolonged, sometimes wired-in, funk that provides work for mental health care professionals and tests of love and friendship – can be deadly. Rising above its effects just enough to write words or compose music, it can also be the setting for sparks of creativity. It comes in various forms and gradations. If you can die from it or the consequences or situations that often follow – suicide, addiction, reckless or abusive behavior and so on – there are also a variety of strategies to manage the condition and get on with a productive life. Photo by Pexels.
Depresión: puedes morir a causa de ella, o vivir como enterrado. Es mucho mejor encontrar maneras de vivir con ella. Foto por Pexels.

Music to save lives
Música para salvar vidas

Joan Osborne – What Becomes Of The Broken Hearted

Robbie Robertson – Fallen Angel

Tracy Chapman – Behind the Wall

Suzanne Vega – Luka

Faithless – Insomnia

Iggy Pop – Some Weird Sin

Cienfue – Medio Alcoholico Melancolico

Janis Joplin – Ball and Chain

The Velvet Underground – Heroin

Disturbed – A Reason To Fight

David Gilmour – Wish You Were Here

Hello Seahorse – La Flotadera

Bob Marley – Redemption Song

Norah Jones – Begin Again

Aretha Franklin – People Get Ready


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Larvas misteriosas en ambos océanos de Panamá

plankton sm
Con aspecto de extraterrestres, estas larvas de foronídeos se recolectaron en la Bahía de Panamá (Océano Pacífico). A-E muestra una larva en diferentes etapas de crecimiento. A es la más joven y E es un gusano juvenil. F y G muestran dos especímenes diferentes. Y H e I son vistas diferentes del mismo espécimen. Foto por Michael Boyle. Para una versión más grande de este gráfico toque aquí.

Se descubren larvas misteriosas
en ambos océanos de Panamá

por Sonia Tejada – STRI (in English, click here)

Estas pequeñas larvas flotan libremente en el agua salada, mientras que sus padres viven en el fondo del mar, generalmente sin ser detectados. Los estudios genéticos nos proporcionan pistas de que hay más especies por descubrir.

Las fotos de muestras de agua de mar tomadas con microscopios, revelan la etapa larval de estas poco conocidas criaturas marinas llamadas foronídeos, pero contrary a sus padres es otra historia. Aunque estas extravagantes larvas llamaron la atención de los científicos que desde el siglo XIX estudian el plancton, pequeñas plantas y animales que flotan en los océanos, hasta el momento, sólo hay unas 15 especies de foronídeos conocidos en el mundo, basados en especímenes adultos. Un estudio de las larvas, publicado esta semana por científicos del Instituto Smithsonian de Investigaciones Tropicales (STRI) en Panamá detectó ocho especies potencialmente nuevas.

“La diversidad global de animales marinos pequeños y raros como los foronídeos, está muy subestimada”, comentó Rachel Collin, científica de STRI. “No sabemos qué animales hay por ahí, y sabemos aún menos sobre cuál podría ser su papel en los océanos del mundo”.

RC in Bocas
Rachel Collin, científica del Instituto Smithsonian de Investigaciones Tropicales y directora de la Estación de Investigación de Bocas del Toro, donde se llevan a cabo cursos de capacitación en taxonomía. Crédito: Archivos STRI.

Debido a que las larvas de foronídeos flotan en el agua de mar, a menudo son más fáciles de muestrear que los adultos, que viven en el lecho marino enterrados la arena, en sedimentos o en escombros. Y las larvas no se parecen a los adultos, lo que dificulta saber qué larva pertenece a qué adulto sin hacer una especie de prueba de paternidad: comparar las secuencias de ADN larvales con el ADN de sus posibles padres.

Llamados así en honor a la diosa egipcia Phoronis, los foronídeos, de cuerpos tubulares, anclan sus cuerpos a rocas o corales y agitan una corona de tentáculos para capturar pequeñas partículas de alimentos. Para reproducirse, producen huevos y espermatozoides. Cuando los huevos eclosionan, las larvas salen al agua y se convierten en parte del plancton.

Las larvas tienen cuerpos cilíndricos con un anillo de tentáculos en la parte superior y una gran capucha que sirve para capturar alimentos. Algunos están decorados con manchas de pigmento amarillo y en otros es posible ver manchas rojizas o rosadas de células sanguíneas a través de sus cuerpos translúcidos. Finalmente, descienden al lecho marino, se convierten en adultos y completan su ciclo de vida, considerado el ciclo más común en el reino animal.

Los científicos recolectaron plancton de la Bahía de Panamá en la costa del Pacífico y de Bocas del Toro en la costa del Caribe. Al examinar el plancton utilizando un estereomicroscopio, encontraron más de 50 larvas de foronídeos, 23 del Pacífico y 29 del Atlántico. Utilizando una técnica genética llamada código de barras, basada en la secuenciación del ADN, pudieron distinguir tres tipos de plancton de foronídeos en la Bahía de Panamá y cuatro tipos en el Caribe.

El ADN de genes particulares de cada uno de estos animales era distinto de cualquier otro registrado en GenBank, la colección global de ADN de más de 300,000 organismos, lo que significa que todos pueden ser especies nuevas para la ciencia. Sin embargo, encontrar a los adultos de estas especies puede llevar años, especialmente porque muy pocos científicos estudian foronídeos.

mb in Panama Bay
Michael Boyle, ex becario postdoctoral Tupper en STRI y ahora biólogo e investigador principal del Programa Life Histories en la Estación Marina Smithsonian en Fort Pierce, Florida. Se muestra aquí recogiendo larvas. Crédito: Archivos STRI.

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