Gargajo


GARGAJO

Con un carraspeo de coraje e indignación

Soltó aquel magnífico agente purificador

Claro y transparente como el agua

Sirvió para desempañetar los cristales de la división

Ahora está más limpia

Podemos ver por donde traza la costura

Y como una chispa en la yerba sureña durante el verano

Enciende el fuego de las diferencias

Se dejan ver claras las prioridades

La red se ofende con las encimas de su garganta

Mucho más que con la horca que llevan en el cuello

Más que con el caldo de un violador

Y con esa escupieron los insultos

Permiso para  volver al discurso de los pelús

No olviden ofenderse también por los sobacos

Aquí si vas a faltar el respeto más vale que uses corbata

y traje de diseñador

Bendito fue ese buche maravilloso

Que con su puntería permite ver el calibre a nuestro alrededor.

©2017 Maricel Jiménez Peña

Votar vs. No votar – Elecciones 2016


Hoy es día de elecciones en Puerto Rico y algunas personas me han expresado que éste año votar es literalmente botar el voto. Al final, casi todas las decisiones las tomará la Junta de Control Fiscal y no importa a quién pongamos en las sillas, el verdadero poder lo tiene la Junta.

No lo cuestiono. Esto es verdad.

Sin embargo, creo que es sumamente importante ejercer este voto hoy más que nunca. ¿Por qué? Porque estamos escogiendo a quienes nos representarán ante esa mismita Junta y pienso que sería sumamente interesante ver qué pasaría si la postura del gobierno electo sea una de lucha y resistencia. Aparte de esta razón, tampoco estoy muy clara sobre qué realmente se logra con la abstención al voto. ¿Qué mensaje estás llevando? La abstinencia al final dice muy poco. Yo no sé si te abstuviste o simplemente estabas con hangover y no fuiste a votar. La abstinencia es silencio. No dice nada.

¿No sería mejor abrir la boca (o en este caso el “sharpie”) y votar por quien verdaderamente te representa? ¿Colocar personas válidas en ese frente ante la imposición colonial? No sé. Creo que en este caso el silencio no dice nada. Habla. Vota. Aunque sea un write-in por Papá Pitufo. Si no lo plasmas ahí en la papeleta, no cuenta.

Buen día.

Why Standing Rock Matters Way More Than Anybody Thinks


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Photo from: Think Progress

Today I read an article about the North Dakota Pipeline and Standing Rock that pleaded to everyone for help. I’ve been thinking about Standing Rock for some time now and well, her plea reached me and I will do what I do best, write about stuff.

 

I think Standing Rock is way more than an environmental issue. I think people need to look at what is happening whilst remembering a very important detail: The United States of America stole the land from the Native Americans. I repeat, they stole it. There is no denying this. STOLEN.

And now it seems they’re doing it again. They’re imposing something on their sacred lands and their water source. Something that they are all adamantly against. And the government of North Dakota is using force to do this.

Is this not a colonial conquest? Using force to impose something on the original inhabitants of North America? Looks like conquest to me.

So, regardless of the water and the environment and whether this “affects us all”, this matter is important, simply because it is supremely unfair. It is Corporate America forcing itself on the people. North Dakota forcing itself on its residents. The United States of America cannot continue to have a colonialist attitude towards the Native Americans. It needs to stop having a colonialist attitude period. #NoDAPL

Here’s the article I mention. Good read! Remember This When You Talk About Standing Rock

 

Como se siente ver a Mónica Puig jugar por medalla olímpica para Puerto Rico


Yo me imagino que ya todos los Boricuas saben como se siente esta pendejá. Un rush cabrón de adrenalina mezclado con el corazón hinchado de patria y un poquito de sexy porque hay que admitir que la Mónica está linda. Entonces de repente te das cuenta que acaba de ganar al menos plata. Ya es medallista. Es como un episodio de Stranger Things pero mucho mejor porque es real. ¿Y mañana vamos por oro? No me puedo preocupar ahora por buscar el itinerario; todavía estoy bajando del high adrena/patriótico de su victoria. Me siento como si hubiésemos ganado el Grito de Lares. En serio.

Todo se vuelve aún más loco cuando te das cuenta que mañana (o cuando sea) puede ser un USA vs. PR. What? A que todos los Boricuas de repente se vuelven independentistas. No lo dudo. Pues así se siente esto de ver a Mónica Puig triunfar por Puerto Rico: como ser parte de una novela del gran Gabo. En vivo, desde Macondo, Puerto Rico.

Veremos como sigue esto mañana…

A Democratic Fiscal Control Board for Puerto Rico


Dear Mr. President:

As you’ve signed PROMESA, I propose a more democratic fiscal control board. I won’t beat around the bush and will go straight to it. (BTW, I write this in English so nothing gets lost in translation.) Puerto Rico isn’t very happy about this law. I think a lot of people understand there is need for spending control, but as a COLONY, we do not appreciate such a thing being imposed without any form of control or say from our part. So, in order to have a fiscal control board that is more democratic in its process, I propose the following:

Puerto Rico will accept a fiscal control board under the following conditions:

  1. Congress will elect members from a pre-approved list provided by the government of Puerto Rico.
  2. The list of candidates will be created as follows:
    1. PR legislature will establish a committee that will determine the specific requirements that each member must have. (I believe at least 1 economist, 1 international law debt specialist, someone with track record in city planning, etc.)
    2. Requirements will be based on merits and track record.
    3. No candidate may have previous political affiliations.
    4. No candidate may have held a government position in the past. (At least in Puerto Rico).
  3. Once requirements are established anyone can nominate a candidate, but said committee must approve the candidate according to the requirements.
  4. The approved list of candidates is sent to Congress. Congress chooses the committee from this list.
  5. Congress may appoint 1 member from their own ranks or outside the list, but… Members of the committee MUST reside in Puerto Rico while they serve on the committee (I believe this is essential. When the decisions you make affect you personally, everything is different; perspectives change.)
  6. President approves.
  7. We have a democratic fiscal control board.

THANK YOU!

I get really depressed when people tell me: THERE IS NO OTHER OPTION. I hate that! There is ALWAYS another option and if we just invest a little thought process into it, it can be achieved. I have plenty more where this one came from, so just ask.

 

 

Ideas para arreglar a Puerto Rico Parte. 3


Bueno, no es ningún secreto que Puerto Rico está en la quilla. Ya entró el tax de 11.5% y ya todos estamos viendo como ajustarnos… todos excepto el Gobierno. Ahora están cortando todo tipo de servicio. Yo entiendo que hay que cortar, pero me parece que los programas que ayudan a las personas a desarrollar carreras que le darán estabilidad económica no debe ser uno de esos sacrificios. Precisamente eso es lo que necesitamos: Desarrollo Económico. Así que aquí van algunas ideas para ayudar ese desarrollo.

1. Legalizar la Marihuana completamente. Si, ya sé que ya lo escribí anteriormente, pero es que todavía me sorprende lo poco que se menciona esta alternativa para proveer alivio económico. Es la alternativa más rápida para recaudar dinero porque es una industria que ya existe. Con la legalización podemos atraer más turismo, llevando a cabo un Caribbean Cannabis Cup (The first ever!!!).

2. Eliminar la patente municipal. Es que es un tax que realmente no aporta mucha cosa y lo que hace es atrasar los negocios.

3. Dar un tiempo determinado de “break” a los negocios nuevos para que puedan trabajar y producir mientras consiguen la permisología y todo el fracatán de papelitos que hay que conseguir para poder montar un negocio en esta Isla. Es ridículamente alto el costo de montar negocio aquí. Eso limita las posibilidades por que sólo personas ya adineradas o que consiguen un buen préstamo pueden montar un negocio y el que tienen una buena idea, pero 0 crédito no logra nada.

4. Establecer un sistema de evaluación de los legisladores. A los 2 años de electos se evalúa su trabajo y si no sirven se van pa’ fuera y el próximo en la lista de votos ocupará su lugar. Nada de que el partido escoge. No. Escoge el pueblo. Es como si pasara el escaño al “first runner up”.

5. Establecer reglamento para retener pago a legisladores que no asisten a las asambleas y no participan del proceso.

6. Multar a los partidos que “castigan” a sus miembros por votar en las asambleas como ellos entienden en lugar de hacer ciegamente todo lo que pide el partido. Si el partido lo hace, se le pone una multa bien cheveronga.

7. Eliminar los subsidios y créditos a las corporaciones foráneas. Debe ser por igual. El tax que paga una foránea y una local debe ser igual. Nada de favores. Not fair!

8. Invertir más en la UPR. Puerto Rico debe tener un departamento GRANDE de biología marina (en vez del delfinario de Santini, un acuario para sanar y estudiar animales. El público podría visitar y sería estrictamente para educar y sanar animales y devolverlos al mar) y una escuela veterinaria (las dos van de la mano). Esto traería inversiones a nivel de investigación y educación y aliviaría a nuestros estudiantes que actualmente deben salir de Puerto Rico para emprender una carrera de estas. Salir implica deudas estudiantiles más altas y usualmente lo que ocurre es que no regresan. No queremos eso.

9. Exigirle a USA el derecho al voto y representación (con voto) en sus cuerpos legislativos. ¿Por qué? Porque ellos toman decisiones que nos afectan en grande y deberíamos tener ese derecho aunque seamos una colonia. Ese presidente decide si nosotros entramos en una guerra, nos obliga a enlistar los varones por si hay un “draft” y ¿yo no puedo votar por él o ella? También toman decisiones importantes sobre los fondos que recibimos. ¿Para qué tenemos un Comisionado Residente si no puede ejercer un voto? Es hora que tengamos algún control de lo que pasa arriba y les recuerdo que esa fue la razón por la que las colonias americanas se independizaron.

10. Energía solar. No creo que hay que explicar esto mucho. El sol brilla gratuitamente y cuando deje de brillar ya estamos jodíos so… Energía solar.

Se los dejo con estas diez. Ya escribiré más otro día.

Ñapa: Ya que Romero se rehusa a renunciar a sus escoltas, reduzcan el presupuesto de dichas escoltas a un número más razonable.

¡Buen día!

The Plebiscite by: Maricel Jiménez Peña


Text Copyright © 1998 Maricel Jiménez Peña. All rights reserved.

Governor Pedro Roselló

Governor Pedro Rosselló, Pic form Internet

On July 25 1998, the governor of Puerto Rico, Dr. Pedro Rosselló, announced to his people that he would hold a plebiscite to determine the status of the island in relation to the United States of America. Libertad Cercada looked at the face of the governor behind the T. V. screen. “He looks smaller than usual. Maybe they forgot his little stool,” she thought jokingly. She remembered the previous referendums and wondered why government officials spent so much money on votes meant to change the status quo when nothing in Puerto Rico had changed in over fifty years. “What makes them think things will be different now?” Libertad asked out loud. Little did she know at that time that the fate of her country would rest entirely in her own hands.

On July 25th 1898, the United States of America invaded Puerto Rico during the Hispano American War. They entered the island through Guánica and San Juan. Exactly one hundred years later, the fate of a people that had been forcefully determined by outsiders for five hundred years was now left in the hands of those same people who struggled to define themselves. Parties were planned; big concerts and camps. Groups became clearly distinguishable. Some gathered at Guánica to protest one hundred years of colonialism. Others met at Ponce to commemorate the ELA anniversary signed that same day of 1952. The rest reunited at El Morro to celebrate a century of living under the eagle’s wings.

Libertad sat watching Cultura Profética play their last reggae song. The smell of a burned, polyester, American flag lingered in the air. Shows of patriotism were bountiful. Each time the word “freedom” was uttered the crowd would raise their left fists in protest. Each time they lowered their hands the magic of their faith dissipated and they were faced with the knowledge that theirs was an unrealistic goal. Not enough people believed in their cause.

That night, the tide rose unexpectedly.

5 choices

5 choices (Pic from Internet)

By the beginning of September the rules of the game had been set. The road forked into five choices. Every street corner became a political center where heated debates took place. Inside Wilson’s bar at Bosque street in Mayaguez sat a group of college students. Roberto Infante held tightly to Libertad’s hand while she ordered two Heinekens. Beside them, Laura and Javier were talking about Puerto Rico’s favorite subject.

“We have to vote for our freedom,” said Laura. “Every other option is clearly an insult to this country.”

“I don’t know,” said Javier. “I like #2. Free association sounds pretty good to me. We’re free, but not alone.”

“Oh! Please!” interrupted Libertad. “That one’s the worst. We get to do whatever we want and the States get to pay for it. It’s an insult to them because it assumes them stupid and to us because it underestimates our capacity to make it on our own. Javi, where’s your sense of pride?”

“It has nothing to do with pride,” Javier replied. “It has to do with reality. They’ll never give us our freedom and they’ll never make us a state. Either we stay the way we are now and vote for #1 or we get a bit more liberty with free association.”

“Javi’s got a point,” said Roberto. “They won’t free us or annex us, but frankly I don’t think they’ll give us free association either. Maybe the best choice is #5: None of the above.”

“Are you kidding?” Laura asked indignantly. “That choice is devoid of any meaning. Instead of defining ourselves we’d be crucifying the island. #5 is just another way of saying: ‘You choose for us.”‘

“Laura’s right. The only real choice is Freedom,” said Libertad. “Independence is the only way of assuring we get a say in our future. It is the only way to remain as a people.”

Wilson had been listening to their conversation from behind the bar and added: “It’s also the only way to make sure we fight our own wars and nobody else’s.” Everybody assented with their heads. At least that was one point in which all were in agreement. Wilson had been in the Vietnam war; an American war where many Puerto Ricans died without really knowing why. It seemed unfair to all of them to fight for a country that wouldn’t fight for them.

* * *

The Cercada family sat at their breakfast table in Río Piedras. A statehood commercial came on the television. Only the Puerto Rican flag was present. People spoke of the benefits of permanent annexation. The governor appeared assuring his people that their language, culture and flag would not be lost.         A distant laughter was heard.

Mrs. Cercada frowned. “He’s lying,” she said, “but it doesn’t matter because we’re better off as the fifty-first.”

Mr. Cercada remained silent. He wasn’t certain which was the best option. He took a large sip of his coffee and looked at Libertad who began to speak.

“I don’t want to give up my flag,” she said. “It would be like renouncing my identity.”

“Of course not,” replied her mother. “Puerto Ricans in the states don’t forget their culture.”

“But their children do,” Libertad said angrily. “They forget their language, their music, dances, and customs. They become typical ‘gringos’ who speak Spanish with an American accent.”

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Pic form Internet

Soon after the statehood commercial came one of the PPD, one of the leading political parties. “Puerto Rico should be respected,” said the voice from the speakers. “Vote x 5.” It remained the same everyday until the election; one commercial after the other, each promoting one of the five choices. Slowly the people began to secretly choose an option.

At midnight on September 20th 1998 Libertad walked the crowded San Sebastián street of Old San Juan. By the “plaza” a circle of people were gathered around the ghosts of Juan Emeterio Betances and Pedro Albizu Campos. They spoke about the need for independence; urging the spectators to vote for freedom. There was no other way to retain our sense of selves.

“We will condemn ourselves to extinction,” said Albizu. “Only freedom will ensure the continuation of our people.”

Libertad watched as the crowd began to spread. Only she and a limited number of young people stayed to listen. The others walked away laughing and commenting on the naiveté of the past. The next morning, those who lived by the beach found the sea at their doorstep. It wasn’t flooded from rain. The night had been clear and bright. It was as if the ocean had swallowed up the sand, reaching the streets of the coastline.

On the news there was a hurricane warning. A category 5 storm named Georges was headed straight for the island. Those who had seen the ghosts the night before thought this was part of their prophecy. The island went into panic. School and work were suspended. Supermarkets emptied out. People prepared their homes for the worst. On the night of September 21st 1998 Georges’ eye entered Puerto Rico through Humacao. One hundred miles per hour winds were felt all over. Rivers flooded. The whole island was left without electricity. Only a selected few had running water. It was chaos. Politics were suspended for two weeks, but soon after Rosselló announced that the plebiscite was still taking place. The people were in uproar. Millions of dollars needed to get the island back on its feet and he insisted on spending it on a vote that could definitely be postponed. The propaganda became stronger and more frequent.

Libertad looked at the poles in the newspaper. Statehood was ahead; only around 3% for independence. The words of Albizu echoed in her head: “We will condemn ourselves to extinction.” An incredible sense of fear took over her and she felt her heartbeat raising fast. Sweat began to trickle down her forehead, wetting her hair and face. Roberto sat beside her talking about his great-grandfather who lived in New York and did not notice her state of anxiety. He said that the old man was starting to forget about Puerto Rico. When Roberto asked him to recount some of his old stories the man could hardly remember any of them. Libertad suddenly felt faint. Perhaps she got up from the chair a little too fast. Roberto rushed to help her.

“Are you ok?” he asked.

“Yeah. I guess I need to eat something,” Libertad said looking at Roberto with a puzzled face. For some reason he looked shorter. She stood beside him with her back straight. Yes, indeed. He was at least one inch shorter. Lately everyone seemed smaller. She thought quietly that she should measure herself when she got home. Maybe she was growing.

The next morning Libertad measured herself. She was one whole inch shorter than usual. That would make Roberto two inches shorter. She wondered why everyone appeared to be shrinking. Walking out to the kitchen she heard the T. V. was on. On the news were images of the coasts of PR. All around the tides had risen twenty to fifty feet inland. Some of the once beautiful beaches had become dangerous cliffs that rose two hundred feet above the sea level. Many beach houses had disappeared consumed by the water. What Georges had left behind was now being swallowed by the ocean. Libertad realized that it wasn’t only the Puerto Ricans shrinking, but Puerto Rico itself. She turned off the T. V. and called Roberto. He was on the other line talking to his cousin from New York. When he returned her call he explained to her that the thirteen year old who had visited during the summer had phoned him asking hundreds of questions about the trip.

“I had to describe to him every single place I had taken him and even then, he still couldn’t remember,” said Roberto amazed. “When I asked him about the pictures, he said he couldn’t find them anywhere.”

“Huh,” Libertad said distracted. “Did you know we were shrinking?”

Roberto laughed. “You always come up with the weirdest stuff,” he said, “but now that you mention it I had noticed something. Maybe we’re trying to make ourselves fit. Puerto Rico is getting smaller, you know?”

Libertad remained pensive.

“Oh! Did you hear? One hundred people have been reported missing!” Roberto said casually.

“What?” Libertad’s eyes bulged out of her face and practically touched Roberto’s nose, then quickly bounced back into place.

“Its true. Didn’t you see it in the news? They’re speculating that they drowned with the growing ocean. There’s probably even more.”

Libertad felt the rising heartbeat and the sticky sweat in the palm of her hands. She wondered if her friends from Mayaguez were ok.

* * *

Two weeks before the election the caravans for propaganda became overwhelming.

Sunday, November 29th 1998 there was a statehood caravan. Millions of people drove in their cars holding both flags up in the air. They honked their horns and blocked traffic; played loud music and had a lot of fun. As they travelled along the highway around the island, huge chunks of earth suddenly caved into themselves leaving deep craters in their place. As the caravan progressed the craters became bigger and deeper until they turned into watery graves. Many canyons formed along the island.

The election committee decided to move the voting centers to the highest points in the middle of the “Cordillera Central” because the sea had increased it’s speed of consummation threefold. Already Culebra, Vieques, Luquillo, Fajardo, Ceiba„ Naguabo, Humacao, Yabucoa and Maunabo had been erased in the east side. Isabela, Aguadilla, Aguada, Rincón, Añasco, Mayagüez and Cabo Rojo had sunken in the west. What was left of Ponce were merely a couple of boulders and several remaining coastal districts were quickly being swallowed. Five hundred thousand people had disappeared. At each sunrise a new measure of the island was taken and reports of those missing were submitted. As the plebiscite approached, the numbers increased.

On December 6th 1998 a PPD caravan hit the streets. Once again, millions of people drove in their cars holding both flags up in the air. They honked their horns and blocked traffic; played loud music, and had a lot of fun.

“Vote x 5,” they yelled.

The earth chose to implode again. The pavement turned into water right from underneath the cars. Yet nobody lost their vitality. The few who survived made it around what was left of the island (approx. 65 x 25 square miles). There were only two million, seven hundred and twenty eight thousand, twelve people left. The rate of disappearance was up to two hundred thousand a day.

Libertad Cercada took what she could save from the overwhelming waters and escaped to Toro Negro with Roberto. Her parents had been consumed by the sea. They headed to the forest with a tent, a radio, and a car full of food. That night they lay for hours underneath the stars.

“What are you gonna vote for?” she asked Roberto.

“I’m not gonna vote,” he said. “I forgot to get my electors card and now it’s too late. Besides, I wouldn’t know what to vote for. We need the U. S. now more than ever. Where else are we gonna get the money to survive? We really can’t sustain ourselves this size.”

“Well, I’m gonna vote,” Libertad said emphatically. “I just don’t know what for. I agree with you, we need them, but I just can’t bear the thought of not being our own country. I wish we could be independent by ourselves,” and as she said this she noticed her clothes felt unusually loose. Beside her was the bundle of a sleeping bag. Not even one hair of Roberto’s body peaked out of it. She crept into the bag, curled up beside him, and fell asleep.

The day before the election Libertad Cercada and Roberto Infante woke up measuring more or less three feet. They heard on the radio that the only districts left were Villalba, Barranquitas, Orocovis, Jayuya, Utuado and Adjuntas. Three hundred and fifty thousand, less than four-feet-tall people were left on the island. By now those who had the chance would climb a boat or plane and leave. Thousands fled to neighboring islands and the States. Puerto Rico was slowly sinking into oblivion. From a small tower at the top of the Toro Negro peak the couple could see every coast. They decided to camp out near the voting center to avoid the occasional caving in craters.

Sunday, December 13th 1998 Puerto Rico awoke to a bright, sunny day. The earth collapsed and people ran from the edges in fright; desperate to get to the voting center. Libertad saw the edge not twenty feet from her. She shook Roberto to wake him up. They rushed to the small school where ballots were to be collected. No one had been able to vote. Libertad reached into her purse, retrieved her elector’s card and held it out to the lady at the door with a trembling hand. The lady punched a hole in it, handed her the ballot and directed her down a long corridor. Libertad looked out the window. She could see the salty abyss steadily approaching. She quickened her pace. Inside one of the classrooms she found cardboard cubicles with dark curtains for doors. She stepped inside one of them and sat down. Five options lay before her, but only one to choose. Her heart banged against her ribcage. Large drops of sweat collected on her brow. She could feel the earth shaking beneath her, shrinking more and more with every undefined breath. Barely able to stay still she read each definition. She remembered what Roberto had said: “We can’t sustain ourselves this size.” She looked at the ground. She was sitting on top of the only, long cylindrical piece of Puerto Rico left. Around her was the deep, blue sea. How could she ever make it on her own? Libertad Cercada raised the yellow #2 pencil with her right hand. The earth suddenly stopped shaking and only silence remained. Each breath she took sounded like thunder. She slowly lowered the tip to the ballot and marked an “x” under option #3 (statehood). Simultaneously, the huge boulder collapsed beneath her and disappeared into the water. No trace of Puerto Rico was left.

Text Copyright © 1998 Maricel Jiménez Peña. All rights reserved.

NOTE: This story won 3rd place on a Short Fiction English Competition in the UPR-Mayagüez in 1998. I finished it before the actual elections took place. The final choice of the Puerto Rican people was #5 – None of the above. That was on December 1998. To this day, the colonial status of PR remains unresolved.

Final Results

Final Results (Pic from Internet)

 

Ideas to Help Fix Puerto Rico (Take 2): Health and Public Wellbeing (translation)


We all know that the public health system doesn’t work. We live in a country where people don’t take care of themselves. Obesity and malnutrition are everywhere. This translates to extremely high health costs and right now, a small few are paying for the services of a whole lot, and to top it all off, part of that money remains in the desks and salaries of the insurance company. This shouldn’t be.
1. I propose a Universal Health Plan that isn’t insurance, but rather a fee. Each member of the society needs to pay, whether rich or poor, or whether you have health insurance or not. If anybody needs help paying this fee, the money will be gathered via fundraising galas and such, not from the fees paid by others. This fee, say $200 a year (this would have to be researched in order to have the right #) would be invested in public health centers and hospitals. Whoever needs medical attention can go to these public hospitals regardless of social status, economic status etc. There will be 0 deductibles. The yearly fee and budget should cover everything. If someone prefers private treatment they can go ahead and pay for it, but the public service should be equally good or better (that means we have to give competitive salaries to doctors and nurses). The hospitals should be linked to the School of Medicine and all educational institutions that have to do with health. As part of this effort, healthy living should be promoted and emphasized. It should also link to the Department of Education so that healthy diets will be included in the lunch menus at school and healthy lifestyles stimulated.

2. This new Health System should promote and stimulate healthy breastfeeding and natural labor practices as well as midwifery. The Cesarean Epidemic that haunts the Island; mostly promoted by fear of Lawsuits, has to change NOW. It is unacceptable (wait for blog on this subject: The C-Section Curse).

3. As a complement to the Public Health System, the government needs to establish a preventive health policy that emphasizes on healthy lifestyles. How? By logical and effective urban planning. There should be open public spaces for exercising, cities should be walkable, and the public transportation system needs to be trustworthy and efficient. It also needs to be expanded and improved.

4. I would begin the school day with 30 minutes of exercise to everybody (students and teachers all the way to Senior year). Like that movie “Gong Ho” where they all lined up to work out… everyone lined up doing Yoga. Imagine what Puerto Ricans would be like. We’re already good-looking, we’d be hotter than hell (all modesty aside). That routine, after 15 years of your life, will stay with you forever. We would all be healthier and need fewer medical treatments and medicines. In sum, the cost of the yearly health quota would be significantly less.

5. Organic living. We need to go back to the organism. That doesn’t mean eating organic; it means considering nature in all our planning and building endeavors. Architecture should use our climate, trees, and natural techniques to keep structures cool. The knowledge is there and we used to use it. Let’s go back to practical and creative architecture. Not everything needs to be designed with air conditioning in mind.

6. Universal Recycling. We should establish recycling in the entire Island. Recycling should be the norm when it comes to waste disposal. Separated trash cans should be everywhere: Aluminum, paper, fabric, glass, plastic, and even food. Let’s recycle it all! We cannot continue to produce trash like we have been doing so far. It’s clear that if we continue this trend we will end up surrounded by trash like in that movie “Wall-E”. You tell me if you’d like to go swimming in an ocean full of Coca-Cola bottles. No thanks!

Ideas for Puerto Rico, Public debt, and its Future (translation)


This whole thing about Puerto Rico’s credit getting degraded is the talk of the week. I’m surprised, and frankly, pissed off at the few ideas both politicians and the media actually have. The keep talking about the “only solution”… Well, I have a few ideas, I think they’re good, and they can be implemented at both short and long-term. Politicians should stop talking crap and start using their brains. That is what they’re paid for anyway.

  1. Legalize marijuana completely. Stop joking around with this. It won’t kill you and it could be a gigantic source of new income that doesn’t come out of your pocket, but out of the already existing underground economy. Moneys spent in court and stupid pot head cases could be saved. Also we can grow hemp for ropes, cloth, oil, and medicine.
  2. Fundraising for Debts. Politicians are experts at conducting fundraisers for their political parties and make a huge buck. Let’s invest that time and energy towards fundraising money to pay the debt and help the people. Local artists can donate their talent and time. Concerts, auctions of local art, etc.
  3. Schools should administer themselves and be by district instead of administered by a central office. That money should go towards teachers, materials, and the schools.
  4. Freeze all government salaries immediately. Mayors can’t keep doubling their salaries and raising payments to their friends at the electric company. Seriously, the county isn’t doing good. Everybody has to give!
  5. Stop giving tax credit.  5a. Make it easy to do business in Puerto Rico. It should be the same for foreign companies as well as locals. Let it be easy and cheap to do business here at the bottom level (meaning less permits and license fees that are really high and slow down the process) so that there are more earnings at the net level. Net earnings are the logical things to tax anyway. Sure there will always be some evasion, whatever, if there are more businesses contributing, there is more. What we need is a lot of small businesses and some bigger all putting their share in the pot.
  6. Extended Home Room. From 10th grade on our students need to start learning and understanding about how the government works, global economy, legislation, bonds, credit, etc. These are things we should all understand. I suggest we use an extended period during Home Room to read and openly discuss 1 current news every morning.  They should be pertinent to local or international current events of importance, government issues, economy, social responsibility, etc.  This kind of dynamic will help enhance knowledge and critical thinking in the future voters of Puerto Rico. That’s something very important in order to avoid putting the same charlatans in power in the future.

That’s it for this round. I will continue to explore and share ideas. I would love to hear other ones. Got any?

Ideas pro Puerto Rico, deuda y Futuro


Esto de la degradación del crédito de Puerto Rico está caliente. Me sorprende y francamente me encojona las pocas ideas que tienen los medios y los políticos. Pues yo tengo muchas y son buenas y se pueden implementar a corto y largo plazo. Aquí van. Dejen de hablar mierda y pongan a usar su cerebro que por algo les pagan.

1. Legalización full de la marihuana. Dejen el chiste. No mata a nadie y puede ser una fuente gigante de recursos nuevos que no salen del bolsillo de uno sino de la economía subterránea. A eso liberamos dinero invertido en cortes y casos estúpidos contra mafuteros. Además se puede cultivar el hemp para sogas, ropa, aceite, y medicina.

2. Fundraising pro deuda. Los políticos se la pasan haciendo fundraising para los partidos y sacan un billetal. Pues inviertan en el fundraising para el pueblo y que los recaudos sean para pagar la deuda. El talento local puede donar tiempo y/o algún arte. Subastas de artesanías locales, conciertos de artistas, etc.

3. Las escuelas por distritos que se administran ellas mismas en lugar de ser administradas por oficina central. Ese dinero debe invertirse en los maestros, materiales y plantas físicas.

4. Congelar absolutamente TODOS los sueldos de gobierno. Ningún alcalde puede estar duplicando sus salarios ni dando aumentos a los panitas en la AEE. Mano, en serio, andamos mal. Todo el mundo tiene que ceder.

5. Déjense de estar dando crédito contributivo de casi todo a las corporaciones foráneas y demás.

5a. Faciliten el negociar en Puerto Rico. Para corporaciones locales por igual que las extranjeras, grandes o pequeñas. Que sea fácil y barato hacer negocios aquí, pero le cobran taxes a sus ganancias. Mientras más económico el negocio abajo (es decir, menos permisos y pagos y licencias que cuestan un montón y atrasan y encarecen el negocio) más ganancia genera. La ganancia es lo que sobra y es lo más apropiado para el tax. Sí, whatever, la evasión, pero si hay más negocios participando hay más recaudos y eso es lo que queremos: Que hayan MUCHOS negocios pequeños y otros grandes y todos estén aportando.

6. Salón Hogar Extendido. Nuestros jóvenes de 10mo en adelante necesitan entender de gobierno, economía global, legislación, bonos, créditos, etc. Son cosas que todos debemos entender. Sugiero que durante el salón hogar de las escuelas se escoja una noticia para leer y discutir todas las mañanas. Deben ser noticias pertinentes a lo que ocurre en el país y el mundo actualmente. Esto fomentaría el conocimiento y pensamiento crítico en los futuros electores de Puerto Rico. Algo sumamente importante para evitar seguir poniendo los mismos changos en la silla.

Bueno, eso es todo por esta tanda. Continuaré la exploración de ideas. Me encantaría escuchar otras buenas ideas. ¿Tienen?