The following is a list of posts about politics:
Costa Rica, the happy.
Yesterday I saw in the news that the happiest country in the world is Costa Rica. After they said something about the methodology used for calculating the “happiness Index” I guess I’m not one to argue the algebraic formulas that conclude that I live in the happiest country, let alone what it means to feel unhappy in the happiest country (you couldn’t feel any more miserable than that). But if you allow me being sort of the devil’s advocatte, I will point out some things that make people unhappy here
1. The cost of living: After four years of denial the past government had to admit that costarricans were poorer by the end of the past year than they had been during the last eight years. We pay only in the gasoline hikes, the highest prices for gas in Central America, and, who knows if not in America ($1u.s /a liter, $4 or so a gallon).
2. Crime: The rise in violence-related crimes and political corruption doesn’t make us feel good. With two ex-presidents being prosecuted and hundreds of other questionable public figures, certainly doesn’t make us look like a good people.
3. The Public Education Crisis: Public Education has proven so deficitary it’s becoming shameful to say that you are a student in a public institution in a country where not too long ago we boasted having the lowest illiteracy rate in Latin America (5%). Lots of schools are not only lacking teachers but also infra-structure, many without even desks for the students to sit.
4. The condition of the roads and other transportation facilities: I a country that wishes to maintain Tourism as it’s prime industry. Tourists (and not only tourists, everybody) complain that it’s practicaly impossible to travel through the country because of the bad roads. About 14% of the roads are in good condition, the rest are not suitable for traveling in modern cars.
However, it woudn’t be fair to complain without pointing out some of the solutions offered by this new Oscar Arias government (every new broom sweeps well, so they say).
1. Financing is on the way for the trans-pacific highway the which should connect all the Pacific Coast along Central America. Together with the re-vamping of The Liberia Airport so to comply with the stardards of an international airport.
2. The Training of a Tourist Police with English good enough to deal with the issues affecting visitors security here.
3. Increasing the budget for Education (from 4% of the Internal Brute Produce actually to an 8%).
4. How they are going to fight the high cost of living is still a good question, but if they took care a little more of the Social Security area that hasn’t been invited to the party for many years now, I guess that would help.
To wrap this the best as I can, I would only venture to say that if this country doesn’t make the leap forward, there doesn’t seem to be much of a chance that any other of the Central american
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