Temas Especiales

08 de Mar de 2021

Nacional

Where are our priorities?

Take a look at the disparity. There are some 1.5 million eligible voters in Panama. As half of them don’t bother to vote, that leaves ar...

Take a look at the disparity. There are some 1.5 million eligible voters in Panama. As half of them don’t bother to vote, that leaves around 750,000 people the targets of the $32 million taxpayer funded spending spree, on behalf of those who would rule. Go figure, that’s about $43 per voting citizen.

The winners will spend the next five years rolling in the clover, or feeding at the public trough, with blanket immunity from prosecution for any misdemeanors they may get involved in.

Meanwhile, sitting waiting for resolution of their problems are dozens of women who need DNA evidence to support their paternity claims against deadbeat dads.

MISSING RESTAURANT. Another restaurant that has disappeared from my list of favorite dining spots. Xoko, on Calle 42, has closed it’s doors, driven away according to the owner-chef by the lines of diablos rojos that now roar past the door under the new Bella Vista traffic flow plan. At least this time, customers were alerted that the restaurant was going. Its Mediterranean cuisine served in a home lovingly refurbished by the owner, will be missed. Word was that he was looking for a new location in El Cangrejo. But nothing has surfaced, and the rumor mill says that the chef is now working in a hotel restaurant. If any reader has an update, please let us know.

PARING DOWN. When I wrote about the election night (November 4) soiree at the home of columnist Phil Emondston, I didn’t realize that I might be creating an invitation list problem. The get together is for a small circle of friends, but when I reported that the American Society vigil planned for the same night, had been cancelled, Phil and his charming wife (and gourmet chef) Michelle were swamped with requests for a seat inside the tent. My apologies to all involved. This is a private event, planned long ago, so folks, don’t feel hurt if you find that the invitation list is already full.

DOLLAR BLUES. If you are heading for Europe, or Canada, the rising U.S. dollar will help cut your costs when you arrive. But for expats awaiting pension payments from abroad, the news is not good. The Canadian dollar a few months ago was worth more than the greenback. This week it sank as low as 77 cents, which meant a 23 percent cut, plus bank charges, for pensioners or dividend earners. Don’t look for a rush of Canadians plumping down deposits in Panama’s housing market in the coming months.

FUNDRAISING. Miguel Antonio Bernal who, Peter Pan like, keeps popping up whenever there is a mayoral election is following in Barack Obama’s footsteps in using technology to try to achieve his goal of becoming the city’s independent leader. He is appealing for funds via prepaid cell phone cards. You can send donations from $1 to $25.

If he could raise a quarter of the $6 million that local enthusiasts put into the coffers of a group of corporations running a business called Latin American Idol, he would be well positioned to take on the party machines of his opponents. Alas, that’s not likely to happen, and the University of Panama professor is likely to once again be left sitting on the sidelines.

But if there was a reward for determination and consistency, it would go to him. He deserves support. $