Hate mail from two guys and some more rational discourse
I hope I get to close this webpage
Just like Noriegaville, I have taken the task of sending e-mails to each and every one of people who have advertisements in your webpage, asking them to actually look at your webpage and stop paying for banners. Believe me, I will continue doing it until enough of them stop.
I really cannot believe a foreigner can come here with this kind of negativity. While this country is trying to progress through foreign income, you are scaring away potential tourists... and don't even try saying that you have actually convinced many to come, because this website gives an extremely negative notion of my country. While unsuccesful (tourism to Panama has multiplied), it is sad to see that the only thing you can do is critisize anything and everything that happens. As a US citizen (born there) and member of the Democratic Party, I see that you are just part of the people in my party who want to do nothing more but sit down and write negative news about the inner dealings of other countries. Critisizing is not a sin, and I am not the happiest person with this government; I didn't vote for it, and my family had a very negative experience with the military. However, instead of investigating before you write articles, you just take the most negative facts from the most anti-everything source, no matter where this information was taken, and create news. Instead of promoting a real discussion website, where you investigate, explore, publish and give a real opinion, you have a pre-conceived notion that everything the government wants to do is bad.
This notion ends up in every article you have. Now, I will give you some examples of facts which you have posted that, on top of the fact that can be easily proven wrong, demonstrate the sources you use are just negative for being negative.
- Official reports have suggested that deaths in Seguro Social are less than 30; there might be more in the future, but news is not about what a reporter imagines something could be in the future, written in present tense.
- The "yes" lead on the campaign was never slim, as you always mention it, and the "no" campaign was never in momentum. Polls taken at every stage show that most people were always going to vote "yes". The "no" campaign had a hard time getting to the media because they had no people, and with no people, no money.
- Actually, if you had just gone to Google and made the lowest level of research you could do, you would have found out that the abstention rate in the campaign for the reelection of Ernesto Perez-Balladares was much higher (only 30% of the population voted). And, if you would have mided to investigate a bit more, you would have found out that there is a worldwide tendency to go to the polls in referendums when the election of public officials is not on the ballot is much lower.
- The lowest base wage you can get as an educator is not 260$ per month. In public education, interns with the lowest wages get 387.50$ a month, while permanent professors earing the minimum wage in education get 410.00$ per month. Average salary for interns is 462.50, while average salary for permanent teachers is 491.83, which is almost double what you claim.
- Torrijos doesn't have an "iron grip" on the media in Panama. If he did, this website wouldn't exist. Even though press freedom should be far better than what it is, press freedom is ranked relatively well worldwide.
His brother-in-law does own a publicity company, but then again, he didn't choose this; its a natural advantage.
- Studies that have been done about salinization after the expansion don't claim that salt water will go into the Gatun Lake. They simply talk about options for avoid this from happening. These measures are included in the budget for the expansion proposal. I actually read the ones the opposition posted. In addition, if you really don't believe in the study done by the ACP (which includes budget and saturation), then you shouldn't believe anything about salinization, because those studies were run by contractors of the ACP. Or... wait... maybe you just believe in the studies that say anything NEGATIVE?
- La Prensa wasn't held by the Panamanian military? It simply stopped printing after the PRD and the military told them what they could write and what they could't. Your hero and ideological soulmate, Jorge Illueca, was a puppet president for the PRD in the days of the military (which probably had something to do with censoring the press).
-The consulting group for the Big Dig is not the same one as the consulting group contracted here; they have similar names, but the again, why look at the details if it talks bad about the expansion?
Don't try saying that you are actually critisizing the country so people can see the corruption and inequality and change it. If you want to do this, investigate about what you are about to post, tell people the truth, and eliminate your pre-conceived notions of the world. Then, you might be able to call yourself a shitty underground blog poster, which would be an upgrade.
Arturo de la Guardia
(these italicized data filled in by the editor)
Editor's note: Read on. This is the letter that he has been sending to people who advertise in The Panama News:
Subject: Note about advertisement
Date: Tue, October 24, 2006 9:26 am
Hello! My name is Arturo de la Guardia. I am a 22 year old panamanian student. This e-mail is to inform you that www.panamanews.com, a website where you seem to pay for advertisement, has nothing but negative criticism about my country, with no positive news. I believe people who visit this site would never want to come visit Panama, and paying for advertisement in this site can never be beneficial to our tourism industry. I would just like you to explore this site and decide if you really want to pay for advertisement in this site. I am interested in the future of my country, and this is bad for our tourism.
Response/Letter to: "Torrijos-Aleman Zubieta
Plan Wins Big On PRD Party-Line Vote"
Hi there Eric "Liberal Weenie Head Know-It-All" Jackson:
43% is about par for the course for referendums in Panama, just so you know, you fricken' know-it-all assbite!! 1992 and 1998 were in the 42% range. Elections generally have a turnout close to 70% vs. around 50% in the United States.
The United States has such apathetic citizens when it comes time to vote, that it's very sad that men have died in order to give the Gringos the right to vote, my friend!!! So stick that in your "ugly American living overseas butt" and rotate, baby!!! In elections there are some 9,000 candidates that drag people to vote.
Referendums do not generate as much enthusiasm.
And now you know "the rest of the story", asshole!!
Paul Harvey, news and commentary!!! LOL
[it is believed that this letter was fraudulently signed in another person's name]
Hey Eric: "Jenna Bush is a public figure"????
TOO DARN FUNNY!!!!!
BOY OH BOY: WHAT AN "ETHICAL" PUBLICATION!!!! WOW!!!!
THIS ERIC JACKSON IS AN OUTSTANDING CITIZEN AND PATRIOT OF "LA REPUBLICA DE PANAMA" AND TRIES HIS HARDEST NOT TO SMEAR PEOPLE'S NAMES IN HIS DRIVEL ON LINE NEWSPAPER!!!! LOL
HE IS VERY RESPECTIVE AND ETHICAL TOWARDS JENNA BUSH....TOO FUNNY FROM A LIBERAL.
WHAT A HYPOCRITE!!!!! TOO FUNNY ERIC THE WAY YOU JUGGLE THE BALLS WHILE DOING YOUR "SONG AND DANCE" WITH A TON OF SPIN....LOL
[it is believed that this letter was fraudulently signed in another person's name]
Editor's note: The individual who wrote the above two screeds habitually sends multiple copies of hate mail like this, often with huge attachments, to both of my email boxes. He has been reported to Google and Yahoo and other email providers for his spam assaults and has been told to cease and desist on a number of occasions, but he continues by just creating new email addresses.
It's a problem because there is a concerted effort to shut down The Panama News email boxes by sending huge volumes of spam, signing me up for pornographic email groups, sending spams with large attachments and so on. I am told that this man is in the real estate business in Panama.
Your article about Boswell alias Freeman
Thanks for taking the time to write this article. Unfortunately, I became a 'minor' victim of his scam before your article appeared, but fortunately, I walked away relatively unscathed by his unscrupulous antics. I'd like to share this episode with you, as I'm sure that you can relate to it, based upon your experience with his artful dodging techniques and his supposed affiliation with respected individuals and organizations.
I became a member of The Sovereign Society in the States, which is a very professional organization that works with individuals to teach the legal practices of international investing, dual citizenships/passports, asset protection, trust services, etc. In one of their recent newsletters, they announced the services of Jack Crooks, a highly respected currency expert and Forex trader. Jack was brought on board to develop educational programs and investment alternatives for members interested in tapping into the currency markets. The Sovereign Society did a very nice write-up on him. Several days later, the EXACT same article appeared in Rex's VRG Yahoo group message board, but he substituted all reference to The Sovereign Society with his own group's name! I was aghast!
Now you tell me, from a journalistic perspective, why wouldn't anyone NOT be mislead?!?! When I saw that post, I couldn't help myself. I replied with, "That sure was a smooth response." He screens all member postings and replies before launching the public posting, so very few member replies/posts ever see the light of day. You can certainly be sure that mine didn't!
Anyway, thanks again for your expose. I enjoyed reading it, and hope that you enjoyed my follow-up to your research. Keep me in mind if you ever need a source for a follow-up article!
Editor's note: I did not include the attachment that came with the above letter.
Beware of corruption
Panamanians need to be alert to corruption on the canal expansion, and must demand vigilant oversight every step of the way.
Let me compare the project to a public works debacle in Boston, Massachusetts, called the Big Dig. An elevated highway through downtown Boston was replaced with a tunnel. Panamanians are welcome to use the Internet to find out more about the massive corruption and budget overruns.
More recently, a panel of concrete fell out of the tunnel ceiling onto a car, killing one person.
Nashua, New Hampshire
Mr. Jackson, thank you for being on the front lines of news in Panama. MY name is Wayne Blake, 50 years young, married 29 of them, and my question is this: Is it possible that you could let me know who the companies are that are or will be bidding (working) on the canal? I have spent a good bit of time researching Panama and its resources and would like to experience it first hand with my family. We are a middle class family. I am a heavy equipment operator with 25 years experience in that field. If you could let me know I can take care of the rest, my resume, passport and family is ready. Thank you.
Editor's note: Although some suspicious people think that the contracts and subcontracts for the canal expansion project are already arranged, and the appointment of Second Vice President Rubén Arosemena to oversee the ethics of the contracting process should leave no well informed person reassured, the Panama Canal Authority says that the contracts will be put out for bids at a future date and we have no hard information to lead us to believe that this is not the case. (I personally expect that many of the world's big construction firms --- Bechtel, Halliburton and Parsons-Brinckerhoff from the USA, Odebrecht from Brazil and so on --- will be the leading bidders to be general contractors on the different major parts of the job, and that smaller Panamanian construction companies will get their pieces of the action primarily as subcontractors.) In any case, only those foreign workers with special skills not available in Panama and management or technical personnel from winning foreign bidders are likely to be allowed the work permits that allow them to be employed on this project. Skilled foreign workers and professionals who have the resources to start their own small Panamanian companies that hire some Panamanian citizens might also have a chance with some of the subcontracting.
Happy birthday on the 50th anniversary of UNESCO
Respected folks at UNESCO: Happy birthday to UNESCO (1946-2006), to the staff, members, associates and World Heritage Center (WHC)!
We are letting the world know our concerns as Historic Center residents, as artisans in an area admitted to the WHC List on December 6, 1997 in Naples, Italy. The WHC recognizes the Casco Viejo, and the Salon Bolivar as world historical sites and also in 2003 declared Panama Viejo to be a world archaeological site.
The families of the Artisans United of Casco Antiguo (AUCA) denounce the forced evictions and the violations of human rights that abolish the right to live without fear in times of peace, the arresting Kuna indigenous families and confiscating their arts and crafts.
The Republic of Panama does not respect the National Constitution nor the legislation that protect peoples rights.
The President, Martín Torrijos Espino, knows of the situation of the United Artisans of Casco Antiguo (AUCA).
The Mayor of Panama City, Juan Carlos Navarro Quelqueju, and the head of the Justice and Legal Department of the Mayor´s Office, Juan García, also know.
These authorities do not respect the Constitutional Stay of Execution Guarantees, Sentence No. 57, 30 December 2005, Superior Court, confirmed by 2nd Instance Supreme Court, which verifies the Stay of Execution and Constitutional Guarantees issue on 17 March 2006 by the 2nd Superior Tribunal.
The Panama state is sovereign, but very corrupt at all levels!
The UNESCO Director General, Dr. Koichiro Matsura, has sent consultants over the last few years, as well as, Dr. Francesco Bandarin, Director, World Heritage Center. The chief of the Latin America and Caribbean Unit, Dr. Jim Williams, and others in the past know of our situation of social holocaust and ethnic cleansing.
What has resulted with the destruction of the Central Market, has been de eradication of the community. With the laws prohibiting sales on sidewalk and in plazas and open spaces, the Panamaninan state, Panama City's mayor and the National Police have destroyed the community and have plagued the Artisans United of Casco Antiguo (AUCA) and their families with hunger and misery!
This is the result of our community having been declared a World Heritage Site!
Adan Cerrud Sánchez
About some alarming emails and phone calls from Sora
Editor's note: I received some communications from readers about a supposed outbreak of screw worms afflicting humans and pets in the Sora area. But it turns out that the problems were not with the screw worm that the US Department of Agriculture and the Panamanian Ministry of Agricultural Development have been working to eliminate via the COPEG program, but with infestations by another, larger species of insect larvae that make nuisances of themselves but are not nearly so life threatening or agriculturally destructive as the screw worm.
The screw worm has pretty much been eliminated from Panama, but there are other insect pests that residents of rural areas need to be aware of. Get medical attention for that insect bite that festers instead of heals, and veterinary care for your pet who gets one of those.