The Panama News: a dozen things, stuff to do, etc.
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Kitchen wildlife, here at the outer edge of the inner boonies.

Rector Magnifico gives himself a severance bonus

What Democrats are saying

The Panama News blog links, August 18, 2016

Gandásegui, Las guerras sin fin

Grayson, Another DNC email leak

La Feria Internacional del Libro, ya en ATLAPA

Festival de Percusión, ya en el Casco Viejo

Editorials: No trade war; and Disarm the Middle East

¿Wappin? Even country buays get to be old buzzards

COMENENAL, ¿Otra autoridad?

What Republicans are saying

Gandásegui, Transparencia y democracia en Panamá

Please click here.

The Panamanian team from Aguadulce began the Little League World Series with a terrible massacre, annihilating the Mexicans 10-0. Panama has been in Williamsport before, but never won the whole thing. Maybe this will be the year.


President Varela has nominated and the cabinet has rubber-stamped public defender and former diplomat Asunción María Alonso Mojica as the suplente for the embattled presiding magistrate of the Supreme Court, José Ayú Prado. She replaces Gabriel Fernández, who died in December of last year, and if confirmed her term would run through 2023. Ayú Prado is facing a plethora of allegations, the most serious one at the moment for bypassing judicial civil service rules and using traditional sordid favoritism to select the staff for the new criminal court system for the eastern part of the country in which most Panamanians live. He was one of the worst of the worst of the Martinelli gang, whom Juan Carlos Varela asked to resign shortly after his 2014 election. If Ayú Prado is forced out it would not, according to the high court's rules, make heMs. Alonso the new presiding magistrate. She would just be an acting magistrate who might have to go back to being a suplente if somebody else were chosen to replace Ayú Prado.


There is a new short-term parking area at Tocumen Airport, with access via the Corredor Sur and free parking. It will allegedly ease some of the traffic problems in front of the airport. Now let's see just how the new line of the Metro commuter train system, which will pass by the airport, works into the transportation mix.


After three days of depositions (indagatorias), Ricardo Martinelli's designee to run the Cambio Democratico party in his absence, Alma Cortés, remains in jail under preventive detention. The accusation is that while serving as labor minister she accumulated some $3.5 million in assets, the legitimate provenance of which she is unable to show. Within the party and before the Electoral Tribunal the legitimacy of her functions as a party leader had already been subject to challenge. It's hard to see how the purge that she had begun against 16 of the 25 CD legislators -- on Martinelli's orders -- can proceed with her behind bars. That circumstance, of course, is asserted by the few remaining Martinelli loyalists as one of the proofs that what's happening to Cortés is a political frame-up.


Mexico's leftist leader Andrés Manuel López Obrador -- AMLO -- was here for the Book Fair. He's written a biography of Catarino Erasmo Garza Rodríguez, whom some call a bandit and others a revolutionary.


So what's with the Israeli US campaign propaganda -- via official statements and NGOs like The Israel Project and such -- accusing Democrats of paying ransom to Iran to get US hostages released? There were a number of American citizens being held in jails and prisons on various charges in Iran, and the United States held -- and still holds -- a lot of Iranian assets that were seized by the US Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Asset Control more than 35 years ago. It's a ten-digit sum. Part of the thaw in US-Iranian relations is Washington's undertaking to return -- without interest -- these assets. A $400 million installment was paid, but the Obama administration insisted that the payment would not go through so long as the prisoners in question were still held. The jailed Americans came home, the money was transferred to Iran. But of course Mr. Netanyahu, who has been working the US Congress to promote a foolhardy US war against Iran, puts it as a betrayal of both Israel and himself personally. But Israel and its benighted leaders are not owed any American explanation of US foreign policy. The last time I checked, the US Constitution does not provide that the the State of Israel has any veto power over White House executive orders.


This week The Panama News surpassed 3,700 friends plus followers on Faceook page and 600 followers of the Twitter feed.


Foolish American jocks go to an Olympics in a Latin American country, file a false police report and seem to think that the impunity that prevails for their caste on many US university campuses would apply there. It's a microcosm of something much bigger and more serious in hemispheric relations, but a misdemeanor and a penalty to be paid as the world moves on.


The PelePolicias hand-held database checkers were not an inherently bad idea, but they were used to harass labor union members, for racial profiling and to unjustly arrest journalists, and there were acts of police violence when people objected. Then there were the issues of the criminal justice data not having been updated, and in some cases apparently having been falsified with the specific intention of hassling specific individuals. The contracts with Pele Systems were overpriced and it seems that the monotonous pattern of paying too much with the excess being kicked back to politicians was repeated in this set of transactions. It turns out that some of the payments to the contractor were made to or through Lourdes Castillo, one of the sleazier members of the Panama Canal Authority board of directors. But it is argued that she was just a conduit. To whom? Well, Panamanian corporate secrecy law says that you and me -- and the investigating prosecutors -- have no right to know who is the beneficial owner of Pele Systems. The Panama Papers scandal is not just about foreign gangsters and tax cheats. It's about impunity for the worst of Panama's rabiblanco families and political caste. Cases like this are a vivid illustration of why all Panamanians should take offense at suggestions that the causes of banking and corporate secrecy are somehow patriotic.


The police have kicked the undocumented migrants out of the bus terminal in Albrook. They are being moved to a shelter in Clayton. It was a reasonable move in the face of an unreasonable situation, and the government's vacillating approach to it does not help.

Cartelera Cultural



* Historias de cronopios y de famas–Julio Cortázar (Argentina) – El extraordinario Cortázar describe a los actores sociales de su época. La clase alta, la burguesía argentina de los años 50-60, es representada por los famas. Existe un juego con el sentido de las palabras: los Famas eran seres alados que dispersaban las malas noticias; los cronopios (crono = tiempo) pueden ser entendidos como la clase media argentina de esa época que quieren imitar a los famas, pero son mediocres, quieren que sus hijos sean de sangre de fama, pero los educan como cronopios; y los esperanzas representan las clases bajas de la sociedad, a la espera, apáticos. Es un libro entretenido, que desmenuza y hace burla de lo rutinario.

* Feria internacional del Libro- ATLAPA- del 16 al 21 de agosto.

* Conversando con Juan Andrés Castillo- salón Chaquira- 21 de agosto- 11:a.m.- Feria Internacional del Libro



* Luna llena de tambores- sábado 20 de agosto- 6:p.m. a 9:p.m. – pista de patinaje del parque Omar- evento gratuito

* Certamen de cantalantes- sábado 20 de agosto- Iglesia Cristo Redentor, San Miguelito- 2:p.m.

* Escuela de música del Municipio de Panamá- clases para niños de 7 años en adelante- guitarra, flauta dulce, saxofón, violín y trompeta- clases gratuitas- información:<>



* Exposición obras gráficas de Salvador Dalí- por primera vez en Panamá- La Casa del Soldado (Casco Viejo)- hasta el domingo 28 de agosto- dos de las colecciones más reconocidas del artista: ‘Las cenas de Gala' y ‘Los sueños caprichosos de Pantagruel'.

* Plaza de Francia- Casco Viejo- 50 reproducciones tamaño real de obras del Museo del Prado- hasta el 18 de septiembre

* Exhibición PanaChina- Museo de Arte Contemporáneo-exhibición de arte de artistas chinos y panameños para celebrar esta relación intercultural histórica.



* Que el diablo te acompañe- hasta el 11 de septiembre- Teatro: La Estación - Director: Renán Fernández- Información: 203-6662

* Le prénom- hasta el 31 de agosto- Teatro en Círculo- Dirección: Hannia Woodman- Información: 261-5375

* Mi querido dinosaurio- hasta el 11 de septiembre- Teatro ABA- Dirección: Carlos Quintana- solo domingos- Información: 260-6316

* El triunfo de Rapuntzel- todos los domingos de agosto- Teatro El Ángel- 11:00 am y 2:00 pm.- Dirección: Daniel Gómez Natez- Información: 6321-6118

* Bodas de Sangre- Teatro ABA- 22 y 29 de agosto- 8:p.m.- Dirección: Abdiel Tapia- Información: 6605-4452

* Villanos en apuros- Teatro Bambalinas- hasta el 11 de septiembre- Dirección: Tatiana Salamín- Información: 394-4815

* Gorda- Teatro La Estación- septiembre 20 a octubre 23- Dirección: Gabriel Perez Mateo- Información:<>



* Festival de la rana dorada- del 13 al 21 de agosto – eventos varios- El Valle de Antón



* Centro de Visitantes de Miraflores- abierto todos los días de 9am a 5pm. - Tel: 276-8617 y el 276-8427

* Centro de Observación de la Ampliación- Gatún- abierto todos los días de 8am a 4pm- Tel: 443-5727

* Museo del Canal Interoceánico, abierto de martes a domingo de 9:am a 5:pm.- Tel: 211-1649/211-1650.

* Museo de la biodiversidad- Amador- Lunes 10:00am-4:00pm- miércoles y jueves 10:00 am - 4:00 pm- Viernes, sábado y domingo 10:00am - 5:00pm- Martes Cerrado

* Zoológico El Níspero- en El Valle de Antón- abierto todos los días de 7:a.m. a 5:p.m.

* Parque Natural Metropolitano- Abierto de todos los días de 6:a.m. a 5:p.m.- Tels: 232-5552/ 5516

* Parque Arqueológico El Caño- martes a domingo de 8:00 a 4 p.m.- lunes y días feriados: cerrado.

* Iglesia de Natá- visita con guía especializada del INAC- martes a sábado de 8:00 a 4:00 p.m.

* Museo Explora- museo interactivo para niños- Condado del Rey

* Museo Antropológico y etnográfico Dr. Roberto de la Guardia- ubicado en el colegio Félix Olivares de David- abierto al público de lunes a viernes- de 9:am a 12 mediodía y de 1:pm a 3:pm- visitas guiadas- Información: 775-2854



* Una aventura de robots- 28 de agosto al 25 de septiembre- Dirección: Félix Gómez- Información: 6671-7577

* El fantasma de la Ópera- Teatro Anayansi- 23, 24 & 25 de septiembre únicamente- Dirección: Aaron Zebede- Información: Panatickets

* La comedia “Morirse es un error”- de Enrique Jardiel Poncela- en octubre bajo la dirección de Marielena Mena

* Magia- musical estudiantil- 29 de septiembre al 2 de octubre-Teatro del Colegio San Agustín- Dirección: Arturo Wong

* Festival Internacional de Danza Contemporánea Prisma- del 6 al 9 de octubre- en los teatros Anita Villalaz, Ateneo de Ciudad del Saber y Anayansi- participarán compañías de Corea del Sur, Italia, Estados Unidos, España, Argentina, Colombia, Francia, Canadá, Austria, Hungría, Alemania y Panamá.

* "Un Dios Salvaje"- inauguración del nuevo teatro La Plaza- a partir del 6 de octubre- Dirección: Aaron Zebede- Información: Panatickets

* La otra cara de la señora B- del 7 al 18 de septiembre- Moliere Petit Studio- Dirección: Yamil Salomón- Información: 62941326

* Los locos Adams- del 6 al 10 de septiembre- Teatro Ascanio Arosemena- Dirección: Juliette Roy- Información: AIPTheater- teatro estudiantil-


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(507) 6-632-6343
Eric Jackson, editor