Is the U.S. Government Spying on Costa Ricans and Storing Their Personal Data?

Costa Rica is no stranger to surveillance; it has always been Central/South America's hub of eavesdropping.  Back in the early 1980s the U.S. Embassy in San Jose, Costa Rica was undergoing a remodeling and when finished, the roofs were covered with various sizes of satellite dishes and antennas. These CIA surveillance equipment targeted the conflict areas of Nicaragua, El Salvador, and … [Read more...]

Costa Rica’s “New” Internet Cybercrime Law

It’s always good when some sort of controversy happens is to first sit back. So when President Laura Chinchilla of Costa Rica signed into law Ley 9048 [July 10, 2012], which sought to expand the definition of cybercrime, we listened before writing this post. As expected, the Costa Rica bloggers, newspapers, etc.  had a field day,  claiming a violation of internet freedom and a … [Read more...]

Dogs In Costa Rica – Stray, Puppy Mills and Abuse

  About 2 to four times a month we get these heartbreaking emails from animal lovers about stray dogs that wander the streets.  And of course the story of the man who took a machete to a street dog, who only survived by a generous veterinary,  pretty much had animals lovers in rage. Those loving and caring pet owner know that owning pets, especially dogs, is a big responsibility. … [Read more...]

Costa Rica’s Dry Law – Eliminate the Prohibition Ley Seca?

One of the things that Gringo's have always been puzzled on is Costa Rica' very old "dry law” (Ley Seca); a liberal law that prohibits sales of liquor, wine and beer at Easter and Christmas, besides elections and such sectarian holidays as Sept. 15 (Independence Day). Bars are supposed to be closed … but as most know, it usually is the front door only! Establishments … [Read more...]

What Does SOPA and PIPA Have To Do With Costa Rica?

Yesterday many websites were in a World-Wide Blackout against The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) bill, and it's sister bill, Protect IP Act (PIPA), that is currently working their way through the United States Congress and the Senate. These new bills threaten every facet of the internet by letting government regulate what can and can not be seen; a form of censorship -  just like China and Iraq … [Read more...]

Higher Traffic Fines, Tolls, Corporation Tax in Costa Rica

One again, as the New Year gets started, Costa Rican's will find themselves paying more to the government. Ticos by nature are non-aggressive, but this time the government may experience what American's have seen, "country wide protests" and what some of the Bloggers are writing about, "WTF - The don't understand land!" Starting today (Jan 1, 2012) Costa Rica will see ( to name the few) … [Read more...]

IRS Goes After US Income Expats in Costa Rica

Once again the media hammered the public with the new IRS threat, that they are going after US expats that have failed to pay US income taxes! Back in February of 2011 the IRS announced a program for U.S. taxpayers who have overseas accounts, income, or other foreign assets that have not been previously reported and/or taxed. This is called the “2011 Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Initiative,” … [Read more...]

Uranium Weapons Banned in Costa Rica – No Free Trade Zone

This week Costa Rica got a lot of world-wide attention with three hot news stories. A Costa Rican court sentenced former president Miguel Angel Rodriguez to five years in prison Wednesday after finding him guilty of taking bribes from French telecoms giant Alcatel. Alcatel is no stranger to kickbacks,  in Dec, 2010,  US Securities and Exchange Commission nailed them with  137 million U.S. … [Read more...]

Limon’s Redevelopment – Stalemate Between Union and Government

If you love historical redevelopment, it is so easy to see how Limon would be the perfect candidate,  and at the same time become a world-class port bringing in billions to Costa Rica. Its shipyards with historical railroad equipment, the downtown look of Caribbean/New Orleans, with its Victorian homes flaunting long balconies and colorful façades add old-world charm . And not counting a gateway … [Read more...]

Costa Rica Sportfishing Vessel Attacked Off Garza – Tourists Threatened

Helicopter drops explosive devices as Venezuela tuna seiner threatens tourists; tenth attack in past two years ... GARZA, Costa Rica and FT. LAUDERDALE, Florida, USA --- A U.S. based world fisheries conservation association is demanding disciplinary action after the attack by a commercial Venezuelan tuna purse seining vessel and its helicopter on a sportfishing boat off the coast of … [Read more...]

Costa Rica Commercial Fishing Fleet Is being Tracked by Satellite

In Sept, 2009  Costa Rican Fishing Institute (Incopesca) and with the help of organizations like The Billfish Association, established a satellite monitoring system to monitor and control the activity of the fishing vessels engaged in tuna fishing with purse seines in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of Costa Rica. Generally, a countries EEZ extends to a distance of 200 nautical miles (370 km) … [Read more...]

Costa Rica’s Future – US Marines, Drugs, Investments, Tourism, and Oil

Last week our email box was pretty much filled with, “Why the US Marines were invading Costa Rica?” Even at our Facebook  account, a few commented on right-wing political BS, “It's all about the oil, about building a military base in Costa Rica, and of keeping an eye on all the other dangerous countries around like Venezuela." However, I would like to comment on the one of the insanely … [Read more...]