Monday, December 31, 2012

Pickup in Belize for sale.

Red Nissan, 4 cylinder pickup for sale at my home. 
Will start putting it out on the street FOR SALE at $5800  OBO.  Wife wants an upgrade to a 2006 thereabouts.  Toyota or IZZUZU.

 Got two pickups, both good.  Will keep the TOYOTA for work horse. Sell the Nissan to get an upgrade.

Red Nissan, 4 cylinder pickup for sale at my home. Nissan 1997,   95,176 miles
Will start putting it out on the street FOR SALE at $5800  OBO.  Wife wants an upgrade to a 2006 thereabouts.  Toyota or IZZUZU.

 Got two pickups, both good.  Will keep the TOYOTA for work horse. Sell the Nissan to get an upgrade. Recently put a $1000 worth of new tires on my Toyota, have to get some of that investment back before selling that.

From: ""
Sent: Wednesday, January 2, 2013 5:00 PM
Subject: Re: Bz-Culture: pickup for sale. Time to go 4 wheel drive.

Ray can you give me some more info on the truck, year, two door mileage and that is Belize dollars?  Do you have a pix.

-----Original Message-----
From: Ray Auxillou
To: bz-culture <>
Sent: Mon, Dec 31, 2012 7:38 am
Subject: Bz-Culture: pickup for sale. Time to go 4 wheel drive.

Nissan 4 cylinder pickup for sale.  $5800   OBO.  Will start putting it out on the streetside in Hillview.  We looking for 2006  Izzu, or Toyota.

Saturday, December 29, 2012


25 PEOPLE OR MORE are undergoing chemo therapy treatment in Belize out of 330,000 population.  Covering all ages per month

  The next step is a radiation clinic.  Only we need one with a PET SCAN and few other things, to locate a cancer spewing cell source, then to guide a needle by sight, carrying a radiation pellet directly to the cancer source.  About ten years old in the USA this procedure is now favored to KILL cancer cells as they form, without the usual side effects of ordinary shotgun approach of current radiation treatment.

Cancer treatments that work are still primitive.  The trouble is, you have to KILL the cancer cells, which are MUTATED CELLS and do not fit any body part.

INDIA looks to be able to help Belize more than TAIWAN?

China is now the next world power.  India is also flexing their economic muscles with a world wide attempt to lock in trade partners and material resources.  About the 1970's The USA was supreme.  Then Japan copied and improved by innovation on US products to turn out quality stuff.  Since then China has surpassed Japan and South Korea also rose as a manufacturing giant.  China leads even the USA and Europe.  Little noticed is INDIA which was locked into a massive bureaucracy that created inertia.  India seems to be working it's way out of those problems now and is expanding out into the world in competition for markets and resources.

  The Indian Ambassador visited Belize from his station in Mexico City.  He says India is willing to lend money to Belize up to $10 million for infra-structure projects.  There are also available to Belize small GRANT FUNDS up to $1 million.

11 scholarships are offered to Belize.  Restricted mostly to government trainees.

Indian companies have $25 billion to invest and are interested in agro processing.

There are other opportunities in vocational fields.  India is willing to take students to India, to study things like assembling solar panels, making 5 and 10 hp steam engines to run generators.  How to make generators.  Casting and foundry and CNC lathe teaching work. TRAINERS can also come to Belize to train Belizeans in groups for technical small light industry fields.

Picking and choosing training sounds like a tricky subject for our civil service who themselves lack skills, or even basic vocational, small entrepreneurial ideas and abilities to create exports. Still, India sounds like a better partner than the Chinese.  Similar language and customs,  They are also more primitive in many fields whch suits the Belizean start up entrepreneur.  Most Chinese stuff is too advanced technology wise and we need a foundation of basic practical, applied physics and tools to work with yet, before we can match Chijnese technical help.

strawberries by hydroponics in South Miami Dec, 2012

  Ray and Silvia Auxillou visit strawberry U PICK hydroponics farm in South Miami, redlands.  We also visited a home tilapia project working fine in tanks.  Dec. 2012.

Ray at strawberry hydroponics in South Miami.



  With no hurricanes in 2012, the economy of Belize took an upswing.  Prime Minister New Years speech says ALL ECONOMIC INDICATORS SETTING NEW HIGHS for production.








Belize rated one of top six retirement havens in the world.


Friday, December 28, 2012



  Got my photo AND finger prints done at BELIZE IMMIGRATION DEPT. today;  For passport renewal. Reason for change in system, they have now, a new computer scanner, biometric machine, that records photo and fingerprints of right and left forefingers at one time.  Supposed to be INTERNATIONAL STANDARDS FOR BIG BROTHER SOCIETY.  NO FEE yet for it though.

Thursday, December 27, 2012


Nationwide, the BELIZE IMMIGRATION DEPARTMENT has put out of business about 40 private sector passport photo photographer shops NATIONWIDE  in the last month with a new photo MONOPOLY.

   Wife went last week for the fourth trip to put in my application for renewal of expired passport. 
All the way to Belmopan.  New rule, the photographs were invalid as the IMMIGRATION DEPARTMENT NOW REQUIRE YOU TO TAKE YOUR PASSPORT PHOTO in their Belmopan office, by their monopoly!  Trip before that, a month earlier they rejected my renewal application on the grounds that the it had to be witnessed by a JP in my community, who knew me.  Could not use Belmopan JP's.  Don't know any J.P.s personally.  But got it witnessed here in San Ignacio.

  Wife came back from Belmopan Immigration frustrated.  4 photos wasted money.  Old expired passport has my photo, I'm the same person.  Not good enough. Comparing old passport photo with new 10 year aged photo is beyond their ability????

  Somebody needs to give the unelected head of Immigration a KICK IN THE ASS.  Think thats a friend of mine, Senator Hulse.  He's whacko!  In my opinion.

  I' m bedridden with CANCER, wife told them.  They said they don't care.  Got to go in person.  Need to rent an ambulance tomorrow and try it again, on my guerney with two attendants.  Need renewed passport to go to Guatemala City for radiation treatments.  Not available in Belize.

  Bet you they say they don't take applications on a Friday now?  6 trips to Belmopan to get my passport renewed and no further ahead after 6 or 7 weeks..  I pity Belizeans out of the country.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Mayan Calendar a work in progress - see images


I have about 5 of them here at my place - they've replaced my networked media players which were old and had noisy fans. I have one running my file server for the media players - 4 x USB hard drives connected to it. One I am configuring up to be an Allstarlink/Echolink amateur radio network node using the Asterisk VoIP server, and another connected to a Thunderbolt GPS Disciplined Oscillator for some super accurate NTP time source. About to order some more to be data loggers and sensor nodes around the place (eg water management, weather station, power usage). To have a fully functional Linux PC for $35 just can't be beat.
Some issues I found with it are:
- OpenELEC with XBMC is a bit more stable than RaspBMC for use as a media player.
- need to have at least a 5V 1A power supply - some phone charger supplies just don't cut it and will cause brownout hangs when the ethernet starts up.
- the ethernet is provided over the USB2 bus so performance isn't great (although it is enough to stream 3 video streams at once with XviD codec
- the need to have a powered USB hub for some peripherals (eg wifi and bluetooth dongles) as the R-Pi can't source enough current to drive the devices
- It's only USB2 not USB3... bit of a 1st world problem.

I've been asked to give a talk on the R-Pi at the local Tasmanian Linux User's Group meeting in January. I'll post my talk slides when I've finished it, some of the links on it could be of interest.

Don't bother buying from RS Components (RatSh%t)... much quicker to order from Farnell/Element14.


Saturday, December 22, 2012


by Ray Auxillou, UHK, MC, BS



 A Baktun is 5125 years.  Fundamental Christians insist their man made religion marked the creation of the world, a baktun ago from the beginning..  The religious engineering by either Emperor Justin or Constantine who fabricated the Christian religion, to unite his Empire under a one God concept. Who are you going to believe Mayan or Christian?

Dec 21, 2012 marked the nearest point the solar system and planet Earth will be to the high concentrated radiation of the center of our a long Mayan count calendar of 52000 years.  There are 13 baktuns in a long count calendar.  This is the warm period between the ice ages, which are our normal condition on planet earth.

  The long count 52,000 years represents a great circle, between beginning and ending.  The solar system crosses the plane of the galaxy, then proceeds into space away from that plane.  13,000 years from now, the solar system will continue a returning circle to cross, the plane of the galaxy again in from now, 26,000 years.  Unfortunately, the solar system will then go out into space again away from the plane of the galaxy.  In  between hot periods there is 52,000 years..We divide the long count into quarters.  Or a circle into four pie pieces.  One 13,000 year piece is our warm period, such as now.  The other three pie pieces are ICE AGE.  There is a horizontal circle as well for our planet and solar system.  Our planet crosses the plane of the galaxy twice in 52,000 years.  The second time, the solar system is far away from the center of the galaxy, so we stay in an ice age.  Our ice age is three quarters of the long count circle.

  From now on, our planet and solar system will be moving further and further away from the concentrated radiation of the center of the galaxy.

  What we know from geological data and ice cores is that the next ICE AGE will happen dramatically and take less than 3 days to come to full force.  That time is approaching.  230 years from now is the earliest estimate and 2000 years the maximum.

  The USA needs to move Washington D.C. to Phoenix, Arizona. 

  After the ICE AGE STARTS IN A MATTER OF MONTHS, MOST OF THE HUMAN POPULATION WILL BE DEAD.  ICE AGE population figures run between  300,000 and 500,000 for planet EARTH.  Hunter gatherer living will be the norm.  Which is actually a superior way to live than industrialized society.

The place to be to survive is the AMAZON basin.  Kashmir, Northern Pakistan, Afghanistan, a valley in the Northern Pyrenees where the Basque tribe survived the last ice age,

  The Mahabharatta or SANSKRIT written VEDAS, indicate some technology survived in  N.W India, around Kashmir, from the last ICE AGE.

Friday, December 14, 2012


Central Farm owes discarded worker 4.5 months back pay.

 Listening to the sad tale of a couple of hardworking Belizeans, now down on their luck.  The man worked for the Chinese Agriculture Research Mission at Central Farm for 10 or 11 years and the family are hardworking campesino types.  The wife does house cleaning around the twin towns, but the man had  a full time job at Central Farm. They and their kids have PERMANENT RESIDENCY  and he has paid all his social security up.  But now he is out of a job and the family are in dire straits.

  Don't know the full story from the viewpoint of Central Farm, but the Taiwanese phased out of agriculture vegetable research and handed everything over to the Central Farm staff.  Since then the man has not been paid his salary for over 4 months.  They keep putting him off , UNTIL NEXT MONTH.  I presume the Central Farm are trying to deal with a budget that was fully committed and do not have the funds to pay up?  Or somebody in administration is getting set to steal the guy's job for a relative, as these sort of deals go with government workers? Anyway his job is gone for him.  He was lied to and told he didn't qualify as he was not a Belizean.  Lacks the knowledge to argue the point.  Certainly as PERMANENT RESIDENTS, they are full Belizeans.
  I've known them for most of the ten years and respect them greatly.  They came up from a small wooden one room shack in which they lived with their kids and rented.  We used to trade flowers we were potting together.  Eventually they got an empty lot in Hillview and have built their own house. Even bought a car.  The wife works one day a week for us, doing house cleaning. Has done so for at least 8 years.

  The thing is being illiterate, they are at a disadvantage in trying to deal with the Central Farm bureaucracy.  I was impressed by the man, he started as just a cheap vegetable farm worker and became FOREMAN.  What he knows about growing vegetables now is equal to all the Taiwanese mission expert workers that have been here doing experimental research.  Seems a waste of valuable talent?  The kids are going to need school fees, and books and all that, but now they are destitute living off charity, here in Hillview.

  Anybody around twin towns need a farm worker, will vouch for the guy.   Too bad I have cancer, or I would set up an ACQUAPONICS OPERATION and train him for that.

Around Belize in the northern winter times.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

The effect of sunshine and cloud cover on tropical Belize vegetable growing.


   I had an interesting query the other day.  About what vegetables you could grow in 1 acre backyard, to make a living in Belize.  The questions had to do with water, cloud cover and sunshine.

  My three year research in hydroponic vegetable growing, showed that irregardless of whether you tried to stagger your vegetable crops, to take advantage of temporary market shortages and thus get a better price.

  It didn't work out that way.  While hydroponics allows you to space crops, so you do not in theory have a glut.  What happened was that the dictating factors for ripening and picking, are the amount of cloud cover and sunshine.  All the vegetables more or less hit the local markets at the same time, irregardless if you were planting in soil, or via hydroponics.  There may be a few days difference, but essentially, when the sun shines, everything ripens at the same time.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012



( I have no idea why?)

  My first overnight visit to Dangriga on the coast for decades, since my daughter and her kids were raised there.  My impression over 40 years, is that Dangriga is now DOUBLE the size it used to be in forty years.  That said, there is a tremendous amount of speculative investment going on.  The town is spreading Westward about a half a mile.  Lot of new merchandizing emporiums going up.  There is big investment by Chinese in super stores, restaurants and hotels. Two or three hostels, the prices seemed high to me, at $25 bz a night per person.  Hardware stores about three.  Caribbean Tire also.  A Cancer Clinic offering chemo therapy here and radiation in Guatemala City.  The population is still Carib dominated, but a growing variety of ethnic populations. Guatemalan, Chinese, Caucasian,   Smaller than the twin towns area where I live.  But a beautiful atmosphere with rural scents, activities and smells.
  I can only conclude they are investing for future expansion, but am at a loss to see where any industry is going to come from?  Fishing and citrus are the major contributors to the economy.  Minor tourism.  Nice place to settle on a retirement income.  I don't see any growth in any of those established industries.  More hotel choices; though I stayed in the, center at Riverside Hotel, where I last stayed maybe 50 years ago.  I finally found a Chinese restaurant open on a Sunday, everybody else was closed.  We had a delicious Vegetable Chow Mein.  For breakfast, nobody opened up early enough, seems like to serve breakfasts, but we passed a dingy hole in the wall Guatemala restaurant we first passed by and rejected. that was open, and desperate at 7 a.m. for an early breakfast.  Took a chance later and it worked out perfect. Across from First
Caribbean Bank.  Highly recommend it. Jueves Rancheros, with sour cream and cheese and beans, lots of thick flour tortillas, eggs, etc.  The lady said she was from the Peten, San Bernito.  We chatted and when she found out I was going for cancer treatment, she took 10 % off the bill and gave me change.  I was touched and we left her money and OUR tip when we left, on the table.  People were generally friendly.  You know the street drunks, and hustler types.  But most people were polite and anywhere we walked, we had to nod and smile, and say good morning to each person.  It was that kind of rural setting.
  The wife got interested in prices of houses.  For the sea breeze.  I'm not in the mood for that sort of thing right now.  Though my feelings after the first chemo treatment have raised my estimate of being alive in three months at 40% a month ago, to 50 % in five months now.  There was one point in the chemo, where the stuff they were giving me, hit the back of the mouth where a lot of pain has come from.  That went off like a bomb.  Have no idea what happened, it was inside the neck, but I sure felt it happen. Not having trouble swallowing today.  Got through the night with no pain pills, though the tumor seems as large as ever.

Sunday, December 9, 2012



  From: Rendezvous
To: Ray Auxillou
Sent: Saturday, December 8, 2012 9:09 PM
Subject: Re:

I have been told not to say this Ray but I will anyway.
 I believe Peter Singfield has some notions that do work at almost no cost.
I understand your relationship is tenious to say the the least.
Never say never.
Best regards,Glenn Schwendinger
Rendezvous Restaurant & Winery
Tel. 011-501-226-3426

Friend Glenn, I learned from TRADING financials, that HOPE is not a workable strategy. Peter is my friend, so is Francis Gegg, but talk and salesmanship is not scientific evidence.  When they post FACTS on their websites, or whatever; so we can look at them, and judge.  Until then, they are like the SELF PROMOTED CONTRACTORS, with no bicycle, or tools.

Quack cancer cures!  There may be something out there for cancer cures someplace? The trouble in Belize, it is ALL ancedotal.  There are no facts.  No scientific method.  No statistics on treatment, number of patients, length of treatment, progress reports, success or failure rates, versus the type of cancer.  There are dozens if not hundreds of types of cancers.  Some cancers from diagnosis beginning, to death only take six months.  In Belize, they badly need diagnostic medical seminars.  Even the suspicion something MIGHT be cancer should to be told to the patient in my opinion.  I've wasted 2 years with mine, enriching the local and Guatemalan medical community by running tests through their newly bought diagnostic machines and taking a lard pail full of antibiotics.  All a WASTE OF VALUABLE TIME.  I might have caught mine correctly if I had been definitely told, when it was the size of a pea.  As a back o' bush country bumpkin, what the heck do I know about cancer? I am posting my progess on my blog as I go along, with hopes DEVELOPMENT WISE, that the KMH public health system, will take note and budgets and priorities be re-set, to be more responsive in the TIME ELEMENT.  In my opinion, they need a local medical seminar for doctors, on cancers and diagnosis and how to deal with these suspicions promptly.  My damn thing got the size of a GUAVA before I was even told in a whisper by a doctor in a hospital in Miami, that I EVEN had cancer.  ( two years later after my search for a medical problem. )  I figure I'm a gone goose!  Doesn't matter, I'll run it out as long as I can and see if my publicizing the problems locally in Belize, will somehow enhance the medical methodology in Belize, by EMBARRASSMENT type development methods.  For sure, a biopsy and pathology procedure lab system at KMH need a major boost and overall.  At a very minimum.  Two months for a pathology report is totally ridiculous. Two weeks for a biopsy appointment is also ridiculous.  50 % of older people over 65 will die in Belize, from cancer related complications.  As primitive as our medical system is, I firmly believe we can do better than that. It is just mostly re-prioritizing.
  Who can tell about Peter or any other jungle cancer expert and their abilities and cures?  They keep no records or statistics.  Without the scientific method, there is absolutely no way to separate the real thing from a QUACK medical promotion.  At least the Belize Cancer Clinic is posting statistics, for failure and success rates on website. These are apparently I'm learning, more related to accidental types of cancers.  Some cure easy and some don't.  There is NOBODY else in the country doing that. Not even KMH. Or even required to do so, by law.  Listening to boasters selling their cures, is like hiring a CONTRACTOR to build your house, who assures you he is the best, and then find out he has to come to work on a bicycle and needs money for some tools to do the job.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Ray with Belize breadfruit ! From his back yard. 2012

After a month long sojurn in Miami, Courtesy of my daughter Sharon and husband David, fighting to get Medicare B to do chemo therapy ( will get it, but in 7 months they say ) and Florida State supplementary ( under review for a month ) I returned home, to find my breadfruit tree was dropping fruit.  This is a breadfruit that fell from the tree.  It will sit on the kitchen table until it gets a bit soft, as it is hard right now.  With some brown spots on the green skin.  Then you slice it cross ways, into half inch thick  circular discs.  Cut those in half, to form two crescents and cut off the green hard skin.  The core is soft and cut that out and you are left with two half moon pieces of fruit.  This you fry in a small pan with coconut oil, until brown and crispy, flip it over and do the other side and you end up with excellent breadfruit for eating.  The hard part is like well done French Fries and the inner white soft part is like mashed potatoes.  A little salt, some avocado and voila you have a dish fit for a king.
  My breadfruit tree bears twice a year for about 3 months each time. Sits in the front corner of the yard by the street side.

  My cancer tumor you can see on the side of my face.  It has filled the right side of the neck and now protrudes the skin out, trying to find place to put dead cells, killed by the cancer. The tumor itself is entangled with the jugular vein, the pulmonary artery, the vein carrying blood and oxygen to the brain.  Mostly I get pain from the back side of the throat, where I guess a lymph node, one of a string in the neck must be encapsulated?  The most difficult pain is on the side of the face, and head, from the fan of nerves called the trigeminal nerve system.  Hurts like hell! Impossible to do surgery in the neck area, as it is a tiny space, jam packed with all kinds of essential nerves and veins.  I start Chemo therapy at the Belize Cancer Clinic here on the coast of Belize, run by a Belizean/USA  Dr. Grant from L.A. in the USA.  Come Monday in two days, I get my first session of four sessions over a two month period.  The plan after that, is to go to Guatemala City to an associate clinic for Dr. Grant to do radiation treatment for another six weeks to a month.  Very affordable by Belizean standards as Dr. Grant's clinic is a CHARITY CLINIC, one of many he apparently supports, here and in California. I've had some cash donations from my daughters, so that helps.
  I have hopes the chemo therapy will reduce the tumor, so the pressure will ease off the nerves and give me some peace and relief from pain.  But at this point this is all new and have no idea what to expect.  CANCER caught me by surprise.  I more thought I would get shot by a jealous husband, climbing out of a bedroom window, than this sneaky cancer invasion.  I kind of wonder if I will lose a lot of weight?  They say so.  I could stand it I suppose.  30 lbs would be good.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

San Ignacio Hotel in Western Belize, Cayo District



XUNANTUNICH: The Concert Event
Mon, December 3, 2012

On Friday, we told you about the plan to close Xunantunich until after Christmas. This is so that a giant stage and amenities can be built in the main plaza to accommodate a major international concert. And we're not talking a few acts flown in from Kingston,
according to UNOFFICIAL reports, organizers are hoping to book major American rock stars such as Neil Young and Sarah Mclachlan
The concert will be held on December 21st. to coincide with the end of the Mayan Calendar and will be transmitted to a global audience. It will also be shown on big screen at four venues in Belize - and there are also plans to stream it on YOUTUBE.
But the two week closure from December 12th to 26th doesn't sit well with the villagers form the nearby Succotz. Many of them make a living off selling their wares in Succotz and say they haven't been consulted.
Director of the Institute of Archaeology, Dr. JaIme Awe says he did hold a meeting in the village on Friday night - but only 20 villagers and no village leaders showed up.
He says the main purpose of the concert is to raise funds for Belize's Archaeological Parks - and the benefits will derive to the villagers, including the erection of a new craft center for the villagers.

Awe also noted that Tikal in Guatemala and Chichen Itza in Mexico are having their own December 21st concerts and those venues will also being closed for a few days to prepare.



    I am still running on some of my pills for pain and blood pressure left over from my week in the hospital up here in Miami.  I'm counting down the pills.  Got five days left supply in two bottles.  Had to get a new supply of the pain pills.,  Got a prescription from the specialist doctor in a hospital we visited the other day,. which cost basically $90 usa for the doctor and then the pills cost another $100,  Not sure how many they are?
   I tried to skip two of my pill bottles yesterday to stretch them out.  Had a helluva bad night for pain and this morning. ( Level 5 out of 10 )  Bad idea that..   The trouble was the doctor said; he could not give me prescriptions for two other pills I'm running low on.  It wasn't in his speciality.  He was not allowed to.
  I'm doing the rough financial math and four pills would cost be about $400 usa a week. Not including the extortion racket they run here with doctors writing prescriptions, or referring you to other doctors claiming specialities, that build up the money flow in the medical business around here. That is more money than my wife and I have as combined income on a monthly basis.  There is no way in HELL we can afford medicine in the USA.  We are officially below the poverty line for joint income, both in Belize and in the USA.
  Belize, like most Latin and Caribbean countries, imports GENERICS and most of the generics come from countries like Lithuiania, or Sri Lanka, Turkey and other odd ball places in the world.  Usually they also only contain the ACTIVE INGREDIENT only.  Compared to the USA this makes them modestly expensive to local wages and cost of living.  But nothing like the USA medicine costs.  It's amazing how many of the heavily touted advertised USA drugs are basically humbug, with doubtful statistics when you read up on them.  In the meantime.  I'm to do a STATE MEDICAID phone interview today.  See if I could acquire financial assistance for the future should it become necessary.,  Tomorrow we fly out of here back to Belize if possible.  To start CHEMO in Dangriga CANCER CLINIC, either end of week, or first day next week ? First thing on arrival is to go to drug store and renew the two bottles of pills I need replacements for. CAN'T TAKE THIS CONSTANT PAIN THINGY.
  If your old and sick, you need Medicare A,B and C in the USA.  Or you need MEDICAID which pays everything for older people, if you qualify. Which I don't.  Our below poverty level income flow is $70 usa a month over the level to qualify for Medicaid.
  Anyway just ruminating on the different costs for Belizeans and those with dual nationality that can access MEDICARE and or MEDICAID in old age. Or those who do not, and our SOCIALIST SYSTEM OF HEALTH CARE IN BELIZE., In my case for medical costs, BELIZE beats the USA hands down. NO CONTEST ! I wonder how the medical care costs are in Vienna where one of my daughter's has just moved to?

An opposing view from my oldest daughter.

 The cost of pills & medical care for the average belizean on average salary is still extremely expensive same as the US.  It may be inexpensive for an expat living in Belize with income from outside of Belize but not so for a belizean person who does not have such an income. Moreover, the belize health system is good for minor cuts & bruises but not much else.  One example is that you could  never in 1 1/2 yrs get a biopsy & results done there, you can't get radiation done there, open heart surgery is not available or done on a consistent basis there etc.-they lack the training, equipment and medicines needed. Much as you malign the USA, it it still the best place to get advanced medical services such as your biopsy and ct & PET scans and the appropriate medicines needed. Even the Belize prime minister's wife receives her breast cancer treatment at Baptist Hospital -Miami same as you did and does not have faith in the Belize sysem for a cure. If you want to survive an advanced illness in Belize you need to leave the country and seek treatment elsewhere otherwise you most likely will die there from lack of services.  There are pros and cons to each system.  I would much rather take my chances at great expense to get the proper care in a US hospital than to have cheap/inexpensive bungled up care where due to lack of training and equipment and procedures they can't tell what you have and misdiagnose you until you die. Over the counter pain pill cheap access does not cure an illness either, it just masks the symptoms of  disease.  Pretty scary that anyone can get a hold of any drugs so easily. That may also be one of the reasons the country is blacklisted as a drug haven.

I recall when we brought a boat down to Bze, must have been around '95, we stayed longer than we had planned and one of the fellows ran out of his meds. He was on three meds(have no idea what they were), but he was able to fill them at the Brodies pharmacy(I think it was). He would get a 30 day supply here, there they gave him a 90 day supply(same pills, not a different brand), for about 1/2(in Bze dollars) of the monthly $$ here.
Bze Kobuh,

That is very useful information Cindy.  I'm passing it on to my daughter Sharon.  I'm too damned sick myself to deal with a bureaucracy.

From: ""
Sent: Tuesday, December 4, 2012 6:23 PM
Subject: Re: Bz-Culture: from: Belize Western Hapopenings

Ray, do you qualify for a Medicaid deductible or "spend down" as it is called in some states?   You have a monthly deductible that is usually the same amount as the over income limit your case $70 per month.  Once you have $70 in out of pocket medical bills you turn them into your caseworker and they enter the medical payment you incurred into the computer system.  Medicaid covers most  anything over the $70 once the caseworker enters the verification in the computer, if the charges are Medicaid eligible.   Most of my clients fill their prescriptions on the first of every month, choosing the scrips that are closest to the deductible to fill first. 
Another option:  Check the websites for Walgreens, CVS, Target, Walmart and Sam's Club.  Most of them have free or low cost formularies.  See if any of your medications are available under their programs.  If not, take the lists to your physicians and ask if there is an appropriate substitute on that list.  In my area the medications that are on list are usually $4.00 for a one month supply.
Alternatively, most drug companies have a Patient Assistance Program that supplies medications.  You can google Patient Assistance program for (name of medication) to see what is out there.
If there is a Senior Center near you they sometimes have staff persons that can help you find resources and some of them even have DHS caseworkers assigned to them
I am posting this to the list, the info may help someone else. Feel free to contact me offlist if necessary.  Medicaid eligibility policy may vary from state to state.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

22,000 views per month average for this WESTERN BELIZE HAPPENINGS BLOG

Page views for November 2012  was 21,816.

  I seem to be stuck just around the 22,000 mark for viewers each month for my BLOG HERE.

The Dream job in Belize

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Typical Caye Caulker, Belize photo.





Friday, November 30, 2012


    Will cause much more trouble down the road than it is worth.

  Any ICJ process will exacerbate current good feelings between Guatemala and Belize as economic partners, and what is already an independent nation of Belize by United Nations vote.


   Ray - Colombia and Nicaragua are the countries you have in mind. Colombia didn't like the ICJ ruling on their land and sea dispute with Nicaragua so they have decided not to accept it and have now withdrawn from ever participating in the ICJ again.
   There are a number of lessons out of the mess as you call it (which is quite accurate) for Belize and the ICJ. The most obvious is that an ICJ ruling will not solve the problem and, in fact, increase the stress and tension levels for all involved. 
   There is a Facebook page dealing with the Belize/Guatemala issue called "Belize, Sovereign And Free - No ICJ!" should you be interested. There are some links to the Colombia/Nicaragua issue there in addition to the regular material....
   This particular page was set up by Mr. Paco Smith of Belize City. There was some interesting discussion and debate recently with a Guatemalan chap. He held up their side of the argument quite well and kept it all civilized despite several highly informed Belizeans like Paco, Wil Maheia, and others taking him on.
  His remarks convinced me more than ever that unless Guatemala were to agree to a total "de-Beliceization" campaign if they lose there is no point in carrying out this exercise. Their kids are taught in school from the get-go about the issue and it will take years for them to be de-programmed. All their textbooks will have to be changed, official maps in public facilities replaced, etc. It would cost a fortune and they will certainly never do it anyway. So the issue will never go away and a ruling in favor of Belize will likely change nothing. 
   I keep trying to find some merit in this ICJ process. I have followed Lisa Shoman's comments on this for quite some time. Certainly she is as informed on the issue as much as any Belizean out there. She is even part of the process. But every time I follow the process to the possible outcomes and look at the risk/reward ratio I see a bet I would not place. Too much risk for very little reward with a high financial cost on top of thanks...


7.4% GDP growth for first six months of 2012 really got the SUPERBOND CREDITORS HOPPING !

  It will be interesting to see what the calendar year GDP number is for 2012?  Most government revenues are earned in the first six months.  Tourism is dead in the last half of the year.  Sugar does not start until the last month of the year, and tourism does not start until last two weeks of the year.  The first half figure of 7.4% Gdp is interesting, but unlikely to be high at the end of 2012 for the 12 months of 2012.
  Guess estimates run between 2.0 % and 3.5 % Gdp growth for 2012 overall. The IMF is guessing for Belize in 2012 a gdp rate of 3.5%  It takes a growth rate of 3.5% to breakeven with the growth of population.  With an annual growth rate of 3.5% GDP you could say the economy is stagnant.  Neither losing or gaining ground. Below 3.5% Gdp and Belize would be losing ground economically speaking.  Over that magic number, you could say our economy is growing.

Thursday, November 29, 2012



 No matter what happens BTL/BEL will be the winners .
GOB agreed to a ring-fence around the dividend flows from BTL and BEL.
Not  sure investors will go for the 33% haircut (To pay off BTL/BEL lol ) and a 4.5% coupon for 5 years and a cap at 6.5%.  I suspect they will say pay the other 11 million that we missed and lets keep talking. Belize prob say well you gave me 60 days i did not ask for it  and you did accept a partial payment  and worst you applied it  so the law is all over the place when it comes to partial payments so you can't be sure that i technically missed the payment.  

On Thu, Nov 29, 2012 at 4:08 PM, innovate belize <> wrote:
Belize's government released two new proposals Thursday detailing how it could restructure the country's debt.
Belize and its creditors have been negotiating a debt restructuring ever since the Central American country defaulted in September, a month after it failed to make a payment on its $548.3 million debt.
Thursday's statement was the first public restructuring proposal since the default.
The new restructuring scenario asks creditors to forgive 33% of what they are owed, or allow the country to delay debt payments for 10 years. The terms are more favorable to creditors than the previous restructuring proposal, in which Belize asked bondholders to forgive 45% of what they are owed, or allow the country to delay any debt payments for 15 years.
"They're pushing for a pretty aggressive haircut" in the latest proposal, Moody's Investors Services analyst Edward Al-Hussainy said.
Belize has argued it needs the debt restructuring to close financing gaps from payments for company nationalizations, decreased tourism and declining oil revenues.
But the country's recent economic improvement could jeopardize its case for such a large debt reduction. In November, the International Monetary Fund said it expects Belize's economy to grow 3.5% in 2012, from 2.5% in 2011.
In the statement, the government said it will seek feedback from bondholders and will remain open to discussing alternative structures that yield comparable levels of debt relief.
On Nov. 21, Belize received a counterproposal from the creditors' committee. The three scenarios all proposed temporarily reducing the bond's current coupon rate while extending the life of the bond, and eventually returning to the current 8.5% coupon, according to the statement.
However, Belize said the creditors' proposal doesn't provide enough debt relief.
Belize Financial Secretary Joseph Waight couldn't be reached for comment Thursday.
The negotiations could be affected by the Argentina debt restructuring case currently in New York courts. If New York law equalizes the rights of holdouts to those of restructured bondholders, Belize may find it more difficult to reach the 75% participation rate necessary to invoke the collective action clause embedded in the bond.
"The prospect of holdouts may, in turn, force the government to moderate its position from the indicative restructuring terms proposed in August," Mr. Al-Hussainy said.




Belize Rejects Restructuring Offer on $544 Million Superbond

Belize rejected a debt restructuring proposal by creditors holding more than half of a $544 million defaulted bond three months after the government missed a coupon payment.
Belize rejected the bondholders’ Nov. 21 restructuring proposal, which is “wholly incompatible” with the country’s objective to make its debt sustainable, according to a statement posted on the central bank’s website today. The Central American country paid creditors $11.7 million on Sept. 20, about half of the $23 million coupon payment it failed to make Aug. 20.
“The government views the recently-submitted scenarios as unsustainable, and is disappointed that a counter-proposal of this nature has come five months after discussions with the Committee began,” according to the statement.
In response to the bondholders’ proposal, Belize countered with two debt restructuring scenarios. Belize’s counter proposals would reduce the coupon rate payment on the so-called superbond and provide a grace period of five to 10 years. The government said it will seek feedback from bondholders’ on the presented scenarios and “remain open to discussing alternative structures.”
“It seems like bondholders and the government still remain far apart with regards to acceptable terms,” said Joe Kogan, head of emerging-market strategy at Scotia Capital Markets. “The government has revised some assumptions and improved on its previous offer. That previous offer was very aggressive, however, and Belize’s growth of 7.4 percent in the first half of 2012 makes it even harder for Belize to justify the haircut they were requesting.”
To contact the reporter on this story: Adam Williams in San Jose, Costa Rica at
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Joshua Goodman at


Good news for the Belize economy and Belizean consumers, from the Statistical Institute. GDP grew at a whopping 7.4% rate in first half of 2012. Inflation is a mild 1.8%. Far better numbers than in the USA, EU or Canada.

Lans Sluder

Sunday, November 25, 2012


After consultations were held between all stakeholders, the Sugar Industry Control Board (SICB) has set Tuesday, November 27th to commence the 2013 sugar cane crop. The Tower Hill Sugar Factory will open its gates for cane delivery at 10:00 am on that date. The SICB has estimated cane production to be at 1,100,000 tons this crop, as compared to 1,070,000 tons in 2012. This should translate in increased sugar production once the cane quality meets or exceeds the levels of 2012.


SPANISH LOOKOUT SMALL GROUP want GMO corn seeds legal.

Grain growers meet, Biotech presented

On the evening of Wednesday, Nov. 7, the first public meeting of the newly-formed Belize Grain Growers Association was held in Spanish Lookout. The group was formed to promote the introduction of genetically-modified (GM) corn into Belize.
GM seed is prohibited by BAHA from being introduced into Belize because of the growing list of problems with genetically-modified organisms (GMOs) and the attractive though unqualified claims made about GM crops.

  A half dozen or so, larger acreage corn growers want to bring in GMO corn to Belize. They have been thwarted by those majority of public opposed to bringing GMO agriculture to Belize, because of the dangers involved.  None of which have been yet proven to be false dangers, but are considered around the world to be dangerous to local agriculture.  They claim a 15% possible production gain, but online statistics and research can find no statistical evidence this is true and solely advertising hype.  Nor can any evidence scientifically speaking prove that any gain would be temporary, IF IT EXISTS at all, other than in the imagination of those proposing the change.  To the contrary, ALL those in the business around the world are talking about the disasters that are occuring from new types of GMO weeds, lower production, lawsuits and spillovers of wind blown GMO corn.

Portable dehydrator for Belize tropical fruit slices!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Retiring in Belize.

Hi there, just read your 2008 article  - Retiring to Belize. I fell in love with Caye Caulker 4 yrs ago & can't keep away!
I'm an RN currently working for a school district in Oregon - originally from the UK.
Just wanted to say I thoroughly enjoyed your story and hope you are both well and living life to the fullest.
Property prices are soaring down there so I feel I may have missed the growing old in Belize boat!
Oh well, there's always a beach hut on C Caulker for rent!
I spent a month down there 2 yrs ago and bawled the day I flew home.
I'm more than happy with beans and fish , a hammock, great book and a G& Belize that's my Paradise.
Be healthy!
Roz RN

 ***** Try the West of Belize Rose.  Prices still affordable and living even half as cheap as Caye Caulker.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Forbes picks Belize as TOP RETIREMENT SPOT

Forbes Picks Belize as Top Retirement Spot
San Francisco Chronicle (press release)
Forbes Magazine's choice of Belize as a top retirement spot confirms the tiny Caribbean country's reputation as not only a desirable place to visit, but as a great place to live, Chaa Creek's business manager Peter Tonti said. (PRWEB) November 21, 2012 ...

Doctors die painless and peacefully, the rest of us get tortured to death.

How Doctors Die

It’s Not Like the Rest of Us, But It Should Be

docs_die_grave_pic Years ago, Charlie, a highly respected orthopedist and a mentor of mine, found a lump in his stomach. He had a surgeon explore the area, and the diagnosis was pancreatic cancer. This surgeon was one of the best in the country. He had even invented a new procedure for this exact cancer that could triple a patient’s five-year-survival odds–from 5 percent to 15 percent–albeit with a poor quality of life. Charlie was uninterested. He went home the next day, closed his practice, and never set foot in a hospital again. He focused on spending time with family and feeling as good as possible. Several months later, he died at home. He got no chemotherapy, radiation, or surgical treatment. Medicare didn’t spend much on him.
It’s not a frequent topic of discussion, but doctors die, too. And they don’t die like the rest of us. What’s unusual about them is not how much treatment they get compared to most Americans, but how little. For all the time they spend fending off the deaths of others, they tend to be fairly serene when faced with death themselves. They know exactly what is going to happen, they know the choices, and they generally have access to any sort of medical care they could want. But they go gently.
Of course, doctors don’t want to die; they want to live. But they know enough about modern medicine to know its limits. And they know enough about death to know what all people fear most: dying in pain, and dying alone. They’ve talked about this with their families. They want to be sure, when the time comes, that no heroic measures will happen–that they will never experience, during their last moments on earth, someone breaking their ribs in an attempt to resuscitate them with CPR (that’s what happens if CPR is done right).
Almost all medical professionals have seen what we call “futile care” being performed on people. That’s when doctors bring the cutting edge of technology to bear on a grievously ill person near the end of life. The patient will get cut open, perforated with tubes, hooked up to machines, and assaulted with drugs. All of this occurs in the Intensive Care Unit at a cost of tens of thousands of dollars a day. What it buys is misery we would not inflict on a terrorist. I cannot count the number of times fellow physicians have told me, in words that vary only slightly, “Promise me if you find me like this that you’ll kill me.” They mean it. Some medical personnel wear medallions stamped “NO CODE” to tell physicians not to perform CPR on them. I have even seen it as a tattoo.
To administer medical care that makes people suffer is anguishing. Physicians are trained to gather information without revealing any of their own feelings, but in private, among fellow doctors, they’ll vent. “How can anyone do that to their family members?” they’ll ask. I suspect it’s one reason physicians have higher rates of alcohol abuse and depression than professionals in most other fields. I know it’s one reason I stopped participating in hospital care for the last 10 years of my practice.
How has it come to this–that doctors administer so much care that they wouldn’t want for themselves? The simple, or not-so-simple, answer is this: patients, doctors, and the system.
To see how patients play a role, imagine a scenario in which someone has lost consciousness and been admitted to an emergency room. As is so often the case, no one has made a plan for this situation, and shocked and scared family members find themselves caught up in a maze of choices. They’re overwhelmed. When doctors ask if they want “everything” done, they answer yes. Then the nightmare begins. Sometimes, a family really means “do everything,” but often they just mean “do everything that’s reasonable.” The problem is that they may not know what’s reasonable, nor, in their confusion and sorrow, will they ask about it or hear what a physician may be telling them. For their part, doctors told to do “everything” will do it, whether it is reasonable or not.
The above scenario is a common one. Feeding into the problem are unrealistic expectations of what doctors can accomplish. Many people think of CPR as a reliable lifesaver when, in fact, the results are usually poor. I’ve had hundreds of people brought to me in the emergency room after getting CPR. Exactly one, a healthy man who’d had no heart troubles (for those who want specifics, he had a “tension pneumothorax”), walked out of the hospital. If a patient suffers from severe illness, old age, or a terminal disease, the odds of a good outcome from CPR are infinitesimal, while the odds of suffering are overwhelming. Poor knowledge and misguided expectations lead to a lot of bad decisions.
But of course it’s not just patients making these things happen. Doctors play an enabling role, too. The trouble is that even doctors who hate to administer futile care must find a way to address the wishes of patients and families. Imagine, once again, the emergency room with those grieving, possibly hysterical, family members. They do not know the doctor. Establishing trust and confidence under such circumstances is a very delicate thing. People are prepared to think the doctor is acting out of base motives, trying to save time, or money, or effort, especially if the doctor is advising against further treatment.
Some doctors are stronger communicators than others, and some doctors are more adamant, but the pressures they all face are similar. When I faced circumstances involving end-of-life choices, I adopted the approach of laying out only the options that I thought were reasonable (as I would in any situation) as early in the process as possible. When patients or families brought up unreasonable choices, I would discuss the issue in layman’s terms that portrayed the downsides clearly. If patients or families still insisted on treatments I considered pointless or harmful, I would offer to transfer their care to another doctor or hospital.
Should I have been more forceful at times? I know that some of those transfers still haunt me. One of the patients of whom I was most fond was an attorney from a famous political family. She had severe diabetes and terrible circulation, and, at one point, she developed a painful sore on her foot. Knowing the hazards of hospitals, I did everything I could to keep her from resorting to surgery. Still, she sought out outside experts with whom I had no relationship. Not knowing as much about her as I did, they decided to perform bypass surgery on her chronically clogged blood vessels in both legs. This didn’t restore her circulation, and the surgical wounds wouldn’t heal. Her feet became gangrenous, and she endured bilateral leg amputations. Two weeks later, in the famous medical center in which all this had occurred, she died.
It’s easy to find fault with both doctors and patients in such stories, but in many ways all the parties are simply victims of a larger system that encourages excessive treatment. In some unfortunate cases, doctors use the fee-for-service model to do everything they can, no matter how pointless, to make money. More commonly, though, doctors are fearful of litigation and do whatever they’re asked, with little feedback, to avoid getting in trouble.
Even when the right preparations have been made, the system can still swallow people up. One of my patients was a man named Jack, a 78-year-old who had been ill for years and undergone about 15 major surgical procedures. He explained to me that he never, under any circumstances, wanted to be placed on life support machines again. One Saturday, however, Jack suffered a massive stroke and got admitted to the emergency room unconscious, without his wife. Doctors did everything possible to resuscitate him and put him on life support in the ICU. This was Jack’s worst nightmare. When I arrived at the hospital and took over Jack’s care, I spoke to his wife and to hospital staff, bringing in my office notes with his care preferences. Then I turned off the life support machines and sat with him. He died two hours later.
Even with all his wishes documented, Jack hadn’t died as he’d hoped. The system had intervened. One of the nurses, I later found out, even reported my unplugging of Jack to the authorities as a possible homicide. Nothing came of it, of course; Jack’s wishes had been spelled out explicitly, and he’d left the paperwork to prove it. But the prospect of a police investigation is terrifying for any physician. I could far more easily have left Jack on life support against his stated wishes, prolonging his life, and his suffering, a few more weeks. I would even have made a little more money, and Medicare would have ended up with an additional $500,000 bill. It’s no wonder many doctors err on the side of overtreatment.
But doctors still don’t over-treat themselves. They see the consequences of this constantly. Almost anyone can find a way to die in peace at home, and pain can be managed better than ever. Hospice care, which focuses on providing terminally ill patients with comfort and dignity rather than on futile cures, provides most people with much better final days. Amazingly, studies have found that people placed in hospice care often live longer than people with the same disease who are seeking active cures. I was struck to hear on the radio recently that the famous reporter Tom Wicker had “died peacefully at home, surrounded by his family.” Such stories are, thankfully, increasingly common.
Several years ago, my older cousin Torch (born at home by the light of a flashlight–or torch) had a seizure that turned out to be the result of lung cancer that had gone to his brain. I arranged for him to see various specialists, and we learned that with aggressive treatment of his condition, including three to five hospital visits a week for chemotherapy, he would live perhaps four months. Ultimately, Torch decided against any treatment and simply took pills for brain swelling. He moved in with me.
We spent the next eight months doing a bunch of things that he enjoyed, having fun together like we hadn’t had in decades. We went to Disneyland, his first time. We’d hang out at home. Torch was a sports nut, and he was very happy to watch sports and eat my cooking. He even gained a bit of weight, eating his favorite foods rather than hospital foods. He had no serious pain, and he remained high-spirited. One day, he didn’t wake up. He spent the next three days in a coma-like sleep and then died. The cost of his medical care for those eight months, for the one drug he was taking, was about $20.
Torch was no doctor, but he knew he wanted a life of quality, not just quantity. Don’t most of us? If there is a state of the art of end-of-life care, it is this: death with dignity. As for me, my physician has my choices. They were easy to make, as they are for most physicians. There will be no heroics, and I will go gentle into that good night. Like my mentor Charlie. Like my cousin Torch. Like my fellow doctors.
Ken Murray, MD, is Clinical Assistant Professor of Family Medicine at USC.


THE MYTH OF THE PUBLIC ACCOUNTS COMMITTEE IN THE BELIZE GOVERNMENT - the enabling license to steal from tax revenues in Belize-

This message sent to the Bz-Culture Mailing List from "G. Michael Reid" <>:
The hullabaloo surrounding the Public Accounts Committee has died down
some but it is in the interest of all Belizeans to revive this and
keep it going.  While many have, as is the case with just about every
subject in Belize, pigeonholed this issue as just another red and blue
rift, it is far from being that and is a matter that should be in
everyone’s interest to pursue further.

The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) is one of six House Committees but
the only one that is chaired by a member of the opposition.  There is,
without doubt, a very good reason why the framers of our Constitution
decided to implement this safeguard as it is designed to hold our
elected officials accountable.  For the most part, everything else
gives the majority members in the House a free run of things and it is
utterly ridiculous to run a government without some sort of checks and
balances in place.

What the people of Belize should realize, is that what Julius Espat is
trying to do, will not just work to hold this current government in
check, but any subsequent government that comes into office.  Once the
PAC becomes active and functional, it will not be easy to break the
fetters that we so desperately need to bind these politicians to the
order of good governance.

A main function of the PAC is to examine the report of the Auditor
General.  Unfortunately, the Public Accounts Committee has been
practically dormant for many, many years.  As a result, it matters not
what type of damning evidence is produced in the Auditor General’s
Report or even if there is any report at all.  Without a functional
Public Accounts Committee, the government of the day can do whatever
it wants to with taxpayer’s money and has no one to answer to.

Honorable Julius Espat should be considered heroic for what he is
trying to do.  It will not be popular in Belmopan and already the
smear campaign is in full effect.  Last week, the UDP’s El Guardian
dedicated its entire front page to the disparaging of Espat and the
UDP radio station has been constantly ridiculing and deriding this
honorable member of the House. The fact is that never has a head of
this committee, neither blue nor red, stood so resolute to demand
performance by the committee.

In an interview on Love FM, Prime Minister Dean Barrow, among other
things, discussed the controversy surrounding the PAC.  Unfortunately,
instead of looking into the matter with a fair mind and with an end
toward finding the truth about what was happening, the Prime Minister
immediately took up the defense of his Ministers. It is obvious that
the Prime Minister and his ministers, who sit on the committee, met
and got their stories together.  They all seemed to be singing from
the same song sheet.

Mr. Barrow had just returned from one of his many and extended trips
abroad and would obviously have had no firsthand knowledge of what was
going on.  Yet, he professed to know word for word what had transpired
in the meeting and who said what and when and even what the agenda was
supposed to have and not have.  When asked about a very current
situation however, that being the McAfee affair, the Prime Minister
denied knowing the man or anything about the man.  “If you show me his
picture”, said the Prime Minister, “I would not be able to recognize
him”.  This after McAfee’s picture had been plastered all over the
news for several days and after the same McAfee had donated on several
occasions to the Police Department. The Prime Minister also seemed to
know very little about anything else that had been happening in the
country.  It seems that all Mr. Barrow’s attention had been focused
entirely on matters connected to or coincidental with the Public
Affairs Committee.

The truth of the matter is that had not the President of the Chamber
of Commerce taken the time to write a letter to both the Prime
Minister and the Leader of the Opposition demanding action, there
probably would not have been a quorum for that meeting; which has been
the case for just about every meeting of this committee since
Independence.  The Chamber of Commerce, the Opposition and indeed the
people of Belize need to continue to demand that this Public Accounts
Committee get busy and get on with the work that it was established to

The Prime Minister and his ministers have all stated that they are
anxious to see this committee work.  Why then do they continue their
attempt to frustrate the process?  Instead of attacking Julius Espat
and using the standing orders as an obstacle, the members of the
committee should get on with the task of dissecting the Auditor
General’s Reporting and questioning the Auditor General herself.  This
is not about Julius Espat, it is about the good governance which was
the very platform upon which this party ran and which was prominently
promised in the manisfesto of the United Democratic Party.

The Prime Minister also stated that once the committee gets active, he
does not want the committee to review anything current.  He wants the
committee to start back as early as 1999, which was the beginning of
the first term of the last administration.  This is an entirely
arrogant and ridiculous suggestion.  Let the committee start current
and then work its way back as it finds the time.  If that’s the case,
we can work back as far as Independence but to ignore what is
happening now and concentrate instead on what has happened then is
ludicrous.  That was the job for committees back then which were in
fact, chaired of members of this government which was then in
opposition. Obviously, none of them had the will or integrity of a
Julius Espat.  Let us all stand behind Julius and insist that the
Public Accounts Committee perform its function and hold this runaway
government in check.  Big respect to Julius Espat for his bold

The Public Accounts Committee is a check and balance on the political party in power spending and embezzling.  So far, in the short history of Belize, BOTH the major winning parties have succeeded in denying this committee the ability to form and operate. Thus they steal and embezzle with impunity.

GREED FLAWS CARICOM AND BELIZE SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT - oil drilling approved in Southern National Park.


   This was a foregone conclusion.  A BANKRUPT GOVERNMENT  cannot ignore potential money from an oil find, no matter how many wildlife, environmental protected areas, or indigineous villages of Mayan natives might be using the same territory in a more SUSTAINABLE SUBSISTANCE MANNER.

  Most CARICOM countries are bankrupt states. They lack the leadership to change their small population and small area status.  Simply don't want to make the sacrifices necessary, as the leadership system is flawed and consumed by personal greed and self enrichment plans at the expense of the public and nation's at large.

Thursday, November 22, 2012


IDB hiccups and surrenders INDEPENDENCE to USA TREASURY?

PM On IDB President Moreno; "A Crass Act Of Cowardice"
posted (November 21, 2012)
Superbond 2.0 - it's still in the air and Belize is about to enter what might be called the red zone. That's the expiration of the 60 day grace period that was given when a half the overdue bond payment was made in September. Negotiations with the bondholders are still underway - but the hand that Belize had hoped to play is not as strong as it would have hoped. And that's because the Inter-American Development Bank has pulled its support for a partial guarantee of the restructuring with a policy based loan.
It happened because the US Treasury Department insisted that instead of going to the IDB, the Government of Belize had to first go to the IMF. The government of Belize flatly refused - and the IDB, feeling pressured by the USA, pulled out.
This morning on KREM WUB Prime Minister Dean Barrow called it a "crass act of cowardice" by the IDB President Luis Alberto Moreno. He told us as much after that show:..
Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister
"I had met with Moreno and I understood from then that he was not as committed as his staffers seem to be but I thought that we had been able to persuade him. Ultimately it was that the US Treasury indicated clearly to Moreno and directly that it would not support the IDB agreeing to the guarantee. It then became a matter of us saying to Moreno to take it to the board nonetheless. I understand that the IDB a branch of the US Treasury. Moreno, for his own reasons ultimately did not do that. He called me to say that because of the US Treasury opposition it was off. That's where things stood."
Jules Vasquez
"How would you characterize the conservative decision that he made?"
Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister
"I told him that I thought that it amounted to a failure of nerve on his part. I was very clear; I said that Belize is not disappointed with the decision, it is disgusted and that the responsibility was his and his alone. I am not saying anything behind his back; I have said this to him directly on the phone. He made the ultimate decision and he must bear the ultimate brunt of Belize's ire. I don't know that that will put us anywhere, but it's good to have these things on record and I sure as hell placed it on record - he had I thought the support at his board to push this thing through notwithstanding US Treasury's objection. Even though it is what it is, I am not going to say the bank of Belize will withdraw from the IDB - we have to be mature, it's not in our interest not to continue our relationship with the IDB. Having said what I have said, having made plain that Belize has the dignity and the sovereign courage to speak truth to power, we move on. We can't throw out the baby with bath water although Moreno is no baby. I having placed on record our disgust, I intend to move on. I would be sharing any podium with Moreno anytime soon, but Lord, institutionally the relations can should and will continue."
And so while Belize soldiers on without that guarantee, there is also the matter of what are the called the conditionalities of the policy based loan.
That's a lot of big words for pieces of legislation such as the Banking and Financial Institutions Act and the conversion of the hotel tax into the GST.
Today the PM said the BFIA is going to be slightly adjusted but the change in the hotel tax is going to be scrapped completely:..
Jules Vasquez
"From the part is that we have already done our legislative part of earning a policy base loan from the IDB in terms of re-configuring the hotel tax - you passed the law."
Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister
"We didn't pass that law."
Jules Vasquez
"You present it in the House."
Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister
"Yes but we never pass that law - Ain't going to be done. One of the things we did pass is the BFIA; I can tell you that we are going to look again at that. There is going to be a House meeting on the 30th November, but not in any fundamental way because these were reforms and advances that needed to be made in any event - the hotel tax. The stakeholders were of the view that to switch from the hotel tax to GST would have created a great deal of problems and that the government would not have gotten the kind of revenue that is now to be had which goes to funding the BTB's marketing program and so on - would not have gotten the kind of revenue from the GST that is now being had from the hotel tax. Given that the IDB has worsened us - that's dead, dead, dead."

The Path to riches, building businesses - outside the box thinking -


by famous and infamous, John McFee, a successful millionaire business builder and then seller.

John D. McAfee's Roanoke College commencement address

John McAfee speaks at Roanoke College.
John McAfee speaks at Roanoke College.
SALEM, Va.-John D. McAfee, the founder of McAfee, Inc. which developed the world's first computer virus scanner, was the keynote speaker at Roanoke College's commencement ceremony where a record 421 graduates received degrees.
Following is a transcript of McAfee's speech.
Thank you, Dr. Maxey, for that optimistic description of myself.
Congratulations, Class of 2008. Congratulations, Jake. Congratulations, Megan.
I watched your faces as you walked in and you were 100 percent glowing with anticipation, relief. I saw a few doubts, and maybe some of you did not finish your term paper, and you're afraid they may find out before you actually get up here, but beyond that, this is a marvelous time in your life.
I came prepared with an address. I thought it was marvelous, and yesterday I tore it up. I tore it up because my good friend Richard Cornett listened to me as I read it to him. I was convinced that 100 years from now they would be circulating this address as the premier example of the perfect public address. Richard's comment was, "well … impersonal, abstract and boring." And indeed it was. He told me that I needed to relate it to my own experience. And that's quite true. I knew that … any good public speaker knows that.
Yet my personal experience, from a standpoint of giving direction to a college graduating class, seemed like a radical guideline to me.
We could begin with my work ethic. Work has never appealed to me, and the bulk of my career was spent avoiding it. My rhythm was working until I had saved enough money to travel the world for a year or two. Then I would quit and travel the world. Wherever I ended up, when I ran out of money, I would get another job. As a consequence, the longest I ever held a position was three years, and that was while I was at McAfee. And my average position lasted about 18 months.
It would be nice to say that after I achieved a degree of financial success, that my habits changed, but that was not the case. After three years at McAfee, I had had enough. I hired an executive to replace me, resigned, spent two years on the road, and never went back.
Later I become frustrated with e-mail's lack of flexibility so I developed instant messaging. Tribal Voice was the result. Two years later, I sold that company and hit the road yet one more time.
So, my work ethic is not something a sane person could use as a sound basis for advice.
My persona as it relates to the business world fares no better. Today, for the first time in 23 years, I am wearing a suit. I am doing this not so I can fit in but so that I do not cause embarrassment to my host. Since I graduated from this school 41 years ago, I can count on my fingers the number of times I have worn a suit.
My business attire is a T-shirt and blue jeans. If I am in warmer climates, it's tank tops and shorts. I favor sandals for footwear. I am tattooed from my shoulder to my waist and down both of my arms-and it's not the happy Mom-type of tattoos. I have, more than once, been denied entrance by security people to affairs at which I was the keynote speaker. Had Dr. Maxey known this prior to my invitation, someone else might be speaking to you today.
So I would have difficulty finding some aspect of my business persona that might in any way benefit you. And my business methodology is, sadly to say, nothing to recommend. I have never developed a business plan. I have never created a sales forecast, a competitive analysis, a marketing analysis or a product development schedule. It's not that I don't know how to do these things; it's just that they seem to me to be superfluous to the process of building a product and making money from it. I never had a staff meeting or formed a committee. In my companies' structures, I have never had a marketing division or a sales division, or a single marketing or sales employee.
When I left McAfee, the company was valued at half a billion dollars, and it didn't have a single salesman or marketeer or a secretary for that matter. I have a number of times spoken to Stanford's business school students, and while the students seemed somewhat interested in my ramblings, the professors generally appeared to be in shock. So I suspect that my business methodology is something that I should not advise you to follow. But if I am honest, I do have to say the following.
The success of my anti-virus venture rested solely on my abandoning the norms of the accepted business practices of the time. If any of you have studied the history of software development, you will have discovered that in the mid-1980s every software company was obsessed with how to prevent users from copying their software and using it without paying for it.
That seemed like an absurd occupation to me. So I came up with a new idea and decided to distribute my software for free. And even added a headline in the opening page that read: Please, steal this software.
The software became a world standard overnight. The money came by charging for upgrades to an existing user base of 30 million, who paid nothing to become users, but who paid yearly fees ever after to remain users. This distribution practice was later called freeware, and it became an integral part of the software world's business model.
My other ventures all shared some departure from the norm. This doesn't mean that if you develop a cavalier attitude toward work, tattoo yourself from head-to-toe and abandon all accepted business practices, you will be successful in business or in any other aspect of your life. I would not, in fact, recommend any of the above.
But, questioning the authority of accepted ideas is not always a bad thing-whether these ideas relate to business, culture, relationships or even religious beliefs. I might go further and say that questioning all authority might not be a bad thing. You may not be aware that you submit to authority, but you do. You submit to the authority of fashion, the authority of your cultural icons and the authority of your religion. The authority of your own knowledge-an authority, by the way, that has been greatly increased during these past few years-is probably your greatest authority.
Even if you are a rebel, and I hope, by the way, there are many of you that meet that classification, see that your rebellion is merely a quest for a new authority. The old authority has lost its ability to compel your obedience, so you seek one that can. And please, I'm not suggesting you run out and thumb your noses at the police. Authority that is accompanied by physical force should, in most circumstances, be meticulously obeyed.
But the remaining authorities, the truly important authorities, only have the power that you choose to give them. I ask you to question your authorities because there is a burdensome cost to authority. The authority of the ideal, for example, creates conflict between yourself and the imperfect world around you, and it causes a struggle between who you are and who you believe you should be. The authority of tradition restricts your ability to think and act freely in changing circumstances. And the authority of your value system may cause you to shun priceless gems of experience.
So if you make an authority of this knowledge that you have spent the last few years cultivating, then you create a flawed master for yourself-flawed because personal knowledge is memory, and memory responds with predictability. So there is no freedom in it.
The knowledge that composes memories' contents is likewise flawed. Historical knowledge is a mere shadow of a past reality. Scientific knowledge is obliterated or transformed with each new discovery. So it is ephemeral, transitory, fleeting. It is merely the anticipation of what might come next. All types of knowledge are similarly flawed. And in spite of its flaws, the authority that accompanies knowledge has an inherent arrogance-a sense of conceit that is truly incongruous with its limitations. It is the entity that makes you right and others wrong.
Knowing the precepts of your own religion, for example, allows you to see the errors in the religions of others. And it allows you to stroll blindly down paths that it has no real power to illuminate. As such, I would suggest that authority of knowledge is the source of absurdity. And lest I be forcibly removed from the stage, I'm not suggesting that you abandon knowledge, merely its authority.
You will want to solve problems as you go out into the world and encounter its tragedies and cruelties. But no problem can be addressed until it is first seen in its purest form. And if you see the world through an authority which, at best, is a coarse approximation of reality, then how will you see the pure form of anything? Many of you are yearning for truth, for what's really happening. This is a natural expression of a youthful and inquisitive mind, which I hope you all have. And you may wonder how truth is possible without authority.
But authority is finite, rigid and narrow. Truth is the actuality of what is happening. It is infinite. It is too grand to be contained within authority.
So, question every idea that begs to be obeyed. Resist accepted patterns. Be skeptical of the majority. Meet every event fresh, unencumbered by presuppositions. And see that if we all walk the same road, there could be no discoveries, no mysteries, no new things. So make your own path.
Strike out in the heart of the wilderness and claim everything that presents itself as your own-no matter how contradictory or strange it may seem to the rest of the world. And don't be afraid. The least trodden path is always the sweetest.
Thank you.
Released: May 14, 2008
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