Editorials: Sad ending; and Will the B section run?

In reality, a Panameñista campaign ad. But because it’s posted on the president’s Twitter feed instead of on billboards, the Electoral Tribunal will see it otherwise.

At long last, it comes to this

President Varela took farms and homes from people and gave them to the subsidiary of US-owned Dole. The people evicted were offered irrisory compensation, nothing all close to replacement value.

Ancient petroglyphs considered holy to many of the Ngäbe people were flooded over and destroyed, as a gift to Honduran hustlers, European investors and a rabiblanco law firm who got a dam concession with a fraudulent environmental impact  statement. Varela said that foreign interests trump those of Panamanians.

Panamanian neutrality as our main defense of the Panama Canal? Varela takes orders from the Pentagon, takes sides with the most atrocious human rights abusers in the Middle East and has given an excuse to a wide variety of fanatics in many places to see Panama as an enemy power. So of course his administration ends with the overt return of US forces to the isthmus.

Look and listen carefully to the candidates. Is there someone who will lead Panama back toward independence?


This raucous, squabbling party will have a crowded 2020 presidential primary field. That’s not a bad thing. Those who are busy trying to “clear the field” by defaming candidates do neither America nor the Democratic Party any service.

The “killer” Bs…

Enough of the dangerous fiend imagery.

There is all the time in the world for things to change but polls suggest that the GOP base is sticking with Donald Trump and that any of the many candidates of possible candidates for the 2020 Democratic nomination would beat Trump. Alarmist stuff about how the Democrats die if they go to the left, or go to the right, or try someone new, or get stuck on someone old – that’s just nonsense.

Are there foreign voices in the crowd? Perhaps, but surely this is mainly homespun by operatives and pundits, or wannabe operative or pundits, looking for advantage in what will be a large crowd of candidates.

Speculation about the so-far undeclared ones is more interesting than the vilification of those already announced. Will Biden run? Will Beto jump in? Will Bernie take the plunge?

Could be that we get these three men in the race, in a year when Democrats are looking for a woman. Could be that anyone with any sort of record in public life gets it cherry picked for that one obscure datum that can bludgeon a campaign to death. Perhaps….

If any or all of these guys decide to run for president, they should be welcomed and respectfully heard. If anyone runs a “Stop B…” or stop anybody else campaign, the purveyors of that are the ones who ought to be outed and stopped. This time Democrats should get to vote for whom they want without threat or stigma.

The mortal threat to Democrats this time around is the possibility of would-be power brokers rigging or appearing to rig the primaries. That could leave people whose votes the eventual Democratic nominee needs unenthusiastic about voting in the fall.

Bear in mind…

In a world where carpenters get resurrected, everything is possible.

Eleanor of Aquitaine

Man is a clever animal who behaves like an imbecile.

Albert Schweitzer

Some third person decides your fate: this is the whole essence of bureaucracy.

Alexandra Kollontai

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