19 November 2012

Costa Rican politics

Talking to the locals here during the day trips, I learnt some fascinating things about Costa Rican politics. Some of the ideas, I would contend, are more advanced than many developed and developing countries.

1. Costa Ricans are obsessed with avoiding corruption in politics. If you are elected president, after one term, you have to wait out two terms before you can be president again.
2. If you

are a congressman who wishes to stand for re-election, you have to resign from the house at least one year before reelection!!
3. Outside of the three usual bodies – Executive, Legislative and Judiciary, there is a fourth body – Electoral Tribunal who takes over all law and order (e.g. Police is moved under this body) two months before election till one month after election to maintain fairness.

Some other tidbits:
1. The president appoints 2 vice presidents. Nobody has been able to tell me why.
2. Costa Rica disbanded the Army (Navy and Airforce also) half a century back to focus on diverting the money to economic development!!!

For a country of 4.3 million where over 1 million are immigrants, it appears they have made impressive progress.

18 November 2012

Sunday night date

Sunday evening. Like every Sunday evening, it is a date night with Sharmila. With a few twists… Instead of our usual Milton’s, it is a sports bar at Alajuela in Costa Rica. Instead of Meiomi Pinot Noir, it is a Costa Rican sugarcane based local drink Guaro. Instead of Alexis, Nate, Austin et. al. at the bar, it is Estaban, Andrea and all. One thing still remains the same. We are watching NFL!!! — with Sharmila Roy at Bar El Almendro.