“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Thursday, July 08, 2010

A good email making the rounds

Cows, The Constitution & The Ten Commandments

Everyone concentrates on the problems we're having in this country lately -- illegal immigration, hurricane recovery, alligators attacking people in Florida .

........ not me -- I concentrate on solutions for the problems -- it's a win-win situation.

* Dig a moat the length of the Mexican border.
* Send the dirt to New Orleans to raise the level of the levees.
* Put the Florida alligators in the moat along the Mexican border.

Any other problems you would like for me to solve today?

Think about this:
1. Cows
2. The Constitution
3. The Ten Commandments

Is it just me, or does anyone else find it amazing that during the mad cow epidemic our government could track a single cow, born in Canada almost three years ago, right to the stall where she slept in the state of Washington? And, they tracked her calves to their stalls. But they are unable to locate 11 million illegal aliens wandering around our country. Maybe we should give each of them a cow..

They keep talking about drafting a Constitution for Iraq .... why don't we just give them ours? It was written by a lot of really smart guys, it has worked for over 200 years, and we're not using it anymore.

The real reason that we can't have the Ten Commandments posted in a courthouse is this -- you cannot post 'Thou Shalt Not Steal' 'Thou Shalt Not Commit Adultery' and 'Thou Shall Not Lie' in a building full of lawyers, judges and politicians ... it creates a hostile work environment.

Also, think about this ... if you don't want to forward this for fear of offending someone -- YOU ARE PART OF THE PROBLEM!

It is time for America to speak up!

Yep, I passed it on


  1. All sorts of good stuff on the intertubes this morning. Crops that can grow in Salty soil

    There's about a Billion Acres of that, worldwide. Going to waste.

  2. Mangoe Report One;

    After Heavy Rains, Fishing Good All Along Pacific

    They say El Niño has ended, and that is usually good news for fishing in Costa Rica. Water temperatures are dropping, and the fishing has been good up and down the coast. We are a month or so into “green season,” and it seems to be starting off normally with mostly sunny days and some evening showers. Tropical Storm Agatha off the coast of Guatemala caused lots of rain and rough seas up and down the Pacific coast, but after the rains disappeared, the bite offshore was good for marlin, sailfish, tuna and mahimahi.

    The tarpon showed up in good numbers on the Caribbean side, and for a few days the ocean was flat and there were hundreds of tarpon near the river mouths.

    Northern Pacific. The guys on the Gamefisher II in Flamingo took out a group from Argentina recently and released seven sailfish. A single angler from Canada caught two marlin on the fly, both over 200 pounds. A few days later, they released five sailfish and two marlin with a group from the United States.

    Ralph Solano of Costa Rica Wild Fishing in Potrero Bay has been catching corvina, roosterfish and black tuna from the kayak.

    Petra Schoep of Tamarindo Sportfishing reports some great fishing after the storms moved out. The Salsa caught two sailfish on a recent half-day trip and followed it up with two blue marlin on a three-quarter-day trip. The Talking Fish caught a sail, a blue marlin and a handful of mahimahi on a full-day trip, while the OutCast caught a blue marlin, a sail and lots of yellowfin tuna and mahimahi.

    Capt. Lee Keidel on the Kingpin in Tamarindo says that after the recent rains the bite has been steady for sailfish, mahimahi, tuna and some marlin. The inshore fishing for roosterfish has been slow, but the bottom fishing around the reef has been good. Congrats to Mr. Tolbert of the U.S. city of Atlanta, who released his first sailfish recently on the Kingpin.

    Capt. Peter Heidenreich and Capt. Chris Watkins with Go Fish Costa Rica in Tamarindo went less than 20 miles offshore after the rains ended and started the morning with a nice-size mahimahi and went one for two on marlin and one for one on sailfish.

    Central Pacific. Joel Steinman and Michael Grossman, members of the Los Angeles Rod & Reel Club, were recently guests of Pam and Earl Warren at Los Sueños Resort and Marina. Their dream was to catch a trophy roosterfish, and each angler had his dream fulfilled as Capt. Jeff Dry put them both onto a trophy under less than ideal fishing conditions. Each guy caught and released an 80-pound roosterfish. They also caught a mixed bag of smaller roosters, jack crevalle, snapper and sierra. Both anglers said the big rooster was the fish of a lifetime and had the highest praise for Capt. Dry and their experience at Los Sueños.

    The Spanish Fly recently caught eight wahoo, three tuna and four mahimahi with the Laramee Family from the U.S. state of Florida. The Bite released three sailfish and one marlin with a father-and-son group. A few days earlier, The Bite released five marlin. The Super Fly released four sailfish and went two for five on marlin with Sara Goff's family. These Maverick boats all fish out of Los Sueños.


  3. Mangoe Report One; part two


    Capt. RJ Lillie on the Disco Pirate in Los Sueños released four sailfish and a striped marlin on a recent offshore trip. His group also caught a couple of 30-pound mahimahi for the grill. The day before, they fished a half-day at a local hot spot called the 26 Rock and caught a handful of wahoo, a couple of yellowfin tuna and a mahimahi.

    Capt. James Smith and the crew of the Dragin Fly in Los Sueños took a group from Hong Kong and Australia out for two full days of offshore fishing. They averaged a handful of sailfish, a marlin and some tuna and mahimahi each day.

    Capt. Dana Thomas on the Hoo's Your Daddy caught a blue marlin, a striped marlin, three sailfish and two mahimahi on a recent full-day, while Capt. Bill Kieldsen on the Sailfish released two marlin and four sails offshore, adding a nice mahimahi for the fish box.

    Capt. Chris Bernstel on the Kinembe II reports a good mix of fish being caught out of Quepos, including sailfish, marlin, tuna, mahimahi and roosterfish.

    The crew on the Blue Water III in Quepos caught 25 yellowfin tuna, two sailfish and a marlin with a group that fished two full days. They say the water has been a little choppy because of the big storms north of Costa Rica.

    The guys from Blue Pearl Sportfishing in Quepos have been doing well on half-day roosterfish trips, averaging two or three fish a trip.

    Southern Pacific. Capt. Bob Baker of Golfito Sportfishing reports a mix of yellowfin tuna, a few black marlin, a few sails and maybe a spare sailfish. Rains have been cooling the temperatures, and the pompano and snapper bite has been good inside. The corvina start to spawn this month, so expect some 30-pound-plus fish to be caught off Playa Zancudo.

    Caribbean. Capt. Eddie Brown on the Bull-shark in Tortuguero called me several times recently to report calm seas and hundreds of tarpon stacking up in the river mouths. Unfortunately, I don't think many anglers were around to enjoy the good fishing.

    Diann Sánchez of Río Colorado Lodge reports big schools of tarpon at the river mouths and lots of fish moving into the river. She says you can see them swimming by right off the dock.


  4. Mangoe Report Two; part one

    Why No Bio Fuel in Paradise?

    Energy Plan Unveiled
    Chinchilla's energy plan short on specifics regarding transportation

    By Mike McDonald
    Tico Times Staff |

    Costa Rica's executive branch presented its plan for the future of Costa Rica's energy sector on Wednesday.

    The strategy, “Toward a New Energy Model for our Country” acknowledges critical holes in Costa Rica's energy market and demands greater use of renewable energy sources.

    While the plan offers some concrete schemes for filling gaps in the country's electricity sector, its ideas for the transportation sector, where the majority of the country's foreign oil is consumed, lacked a coherent vision.

    And, in a press conference following Wednesday's presentation, the government's oil and transport gurus couldn't articulate specific proposals for reducing the country's dependence on fossil fuels.

    Energy Challenge: Officials have yet to present a plan to curb the country's rising fossil fuel consumption in the transportation sector, although the route to clean electricity is well-charted in the administration's new energy plan.

    Costa Rica produces upwards of 90 percent of its electricity from renewable energy sources, the majority from hydroelectric plants. And although the country has the capacity to produce 25 percent of the nation's energy needs from thermal plants, it has historically relied on these stations, which burn bunker fuel, for less than 10 percent of annual production.

    The new plan proposes phasing out the petroleum-based electricity generators over the next 10 years, achieving complete reliance on renewable energy sources for the production of electricity by 2021. The current administration is actively pushing for the legal and technical mechanisms to fall into place for this to happen.

    But the path for transforming the dependence on petroleum in the transportation sector isn't as clearly lit.

    Costa Rica produces no petroleum and imports close to three million tons of it per year. In 2008, these imports led to a record $2.1 billion tab, a sum expected to be similar this year. Approximately 80 percent of imported oil is used to fuel transport.

    Just as worrying is the rate of car purchases.



  5. Mangoe Report Two; part one

    Why No Bio Fuel in Paradise?

    Energy Plan Unveiled
    Chinchilla's energy plan short on specifics regarding transportation

    By Mike McDonald
    Tico Times Staff |

    In 1963, there was one car on the road for every 112 inhabitants in Costa Rica. By 2000, that number grew to one vehicle for every 5.8 inhabitants and, last year, reached one per 3.6 residents for a total of more than 1.2 million cars in a country of only 4.5 million people.

    “In a word, the situation in our transportation sector is ‘sad,'” said Teófilo de la Torre, Minister of the Environment, Energy and Telecommunications (MINAET). “And these vehicles are all part of the problem.”

    In hopes of easing the demand for petroleum, the new energy plan proposes to “progressively” introduce biofuels, and electric and hybrid vehicles to the national market as well as develop a more efficient road network.

    The strategy also discusses the possibility of using electricity and natural gas for public transit.

    While the country has recently adopted tax breaks for hybrid and electric vehicles, the reality is that these new models are still far out of the reach of most Costa Rican pocket books.

    Costa Rican President Laura Chinchilla said that the country will seek incentives for importing these cars to help soften prices at the dealer. She said that experts are working on a “master transportation plan” which will “define the strongest actions we have to take in the country in order to mitigate the demand for petroleum.”

    Chinchilla did not propose a deadline for this plan.

    Meanwhile, the biofuels program is nearly two years behind schedule.

    In October 2009, a year after the program was supposed to have been launched, the National Oil Refinery (RECOPE) announced that the national biofuels plan would be underway across the country “by March 31, 2010.” It's now July and gas pumps are still spitting out unmixed petrol.

    “It is a process that we are finishing,” said Jorge Villalobos, president of RECOPE.

    He noted that the refinery will be producing biodiesel within the first 100 days of his direction at RECOPE. That benchmark comes on Aug. 16.

    And while the use of cleaner natural gas has sprouted in some countries as a substitute for diesel or gasoline in mass transportation, it has never been tested on a large scale in Costa Rica. Thus, its potential here is unknown.

    “We aren't sure,” De la Torre said. “It is something we are studying with care.”

    Government officials on Wednesday seemed informed about the costly and unhealthy dependence on imported petroleum and were aware of the trends that can help reroute the oil slicked transportation sector.

    But when pressed about the details of implementing some of these new actions, officials couldn't provide specifics.

    “The transition to renewable energy has to be slow,” Villalobos said. “It's not something you do from one moment to the next. We have to plan the best scheme possible in order to move away from petroleum.”

    Without having defined the how, the what or the when, Chinchilla's team of experts left a room full of skeptical journalists with an unclear picture of Costa Rica's supposed future in renewable energy. The government that promised “a crusade” to reform the energy sector now is on the defensive.


  6. Life is quite obviously not the living hell I wish upon you every day.

    One can't have everything, now can one?

    Well. We are leaving here in a few hours for our week of document-worthy quality time with The Family. (Also the title of a great BBC miniseries from 2000 that sadly never made its way to DVD.)

    I'll bring back t-shirts.

  7. Have a great time, Trish. I already miss my paradise. It was very sad leaving and my eyes still fill with tears when I think about it.

  8. Thank you, Melody.

    It's been two years and we have newbies coming - out with the old and in with the new, you know; vetted, in a manner of speaking, by my mother - and it may be the most surprising and enjoyable yet.

  9. I'm sure you'll make them feel like it's all been done before. And I'm also sure you'll give them the most memorable and the most cherished memories for them to take home. Enjoy.

  10. tillman was shot with an M4 which has a burst mode which fires a volley of 3 rounds as one of its selections. it does not have a full auto mode but i am sure you knew that being rambo rat.

    it has an effecive range of 500 meters which means the rounds maintain their precision so you could fire all three rounds very close to each other in a tight group.

    as far as your decision to attract certain illegal clientele to our country in order to satiate your appetite for vengence is beyond reproach, especially coming from someone who throws as many stones as you.

  11. Palestinians Freak — No Direct Talks!

    Because the PA leadership can never make a deal with Israel and live, Netanyahu need only call the Obama-PA bluff by demanding face-to-face talks.