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Expat Files – 09.16.16

#1-Shipping and moving items to and from Latin America- PART 2:
Stuff breaks right? What if you have to ship something back to the states for warranty repair? The fact is that most Expats get nailed TWICE for import taxes when they return an item. They’re hit once when the item was first bought and shipped down via Amazon.com or Alibaba.com order (or whatever) and again when it arrives back in the chosen Latin country after stateside warranty repair has been accomplished. However, that just won’t happen if you use the following tips…

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Expat Files – 09.11.16

#1-Shipping and moving items to Latin America- PART 1: Shipping your items down can often be a confusing, testy, frustrating, expensive and scattershot endeavor… a big headache for Gringos with poor Spanish skills. Most seasoned Expats who’ve been through the shipping meat grinder often advise newbee Expats to forget about it… just sell everything up north and buy new or …

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Expat Files – 08.28.16

#1- Latins are perpetually happy. Does that magic rub off on us too? How long does it take? Can even perpetually sour Expats “south of the border” expect an instant personality makeover? Today we discuss those conundrums

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Expat Files – 12.25.15

-Latins celebrate the Christmas holidays for virtually months and months at a time. That said, if you yourself are obsessed about the Christmas season you’ll be in great company down here.

-Because Latins go all out for Christmas, most of them are dead broke before the big event even arrives which, oddly enough, is why the local cops are ever so vigilant as the day approaches. Cops love the holidays. “Tis the season” for the cops to squeeze extra cash out of unsuspecting drivers who are perpetually late and in a hurry to get somewhere (it’s a manana society you know). Today we talk about what to do if you get stopped or pulled over. Right off the bat there will be definite signs that indicate a bribe request is forthcoming. We’ll also explain a few tricks you can use to try to get out of it.

-Today I’ll describe my own very recent traffic stop- Christmas bribe/extortion story. Not to worry, it does have a somewhat happy ending. Listen now to hear how it took me a half hour to wiggle my way out of a sticky situation, when confronted with some crooked cops.

-In a late breaking email, a gringo listener (with a Colombian wife) describes some of the more common and clever new neighborhood extortion schemes that have been popping up in working class residential areas in Colombia, specifically in and around Barranquilla. Could it happen to me, you, or other Expats to? Should we be worried?
Listen and find out…

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Progressive Commentary Hour – 10.27.15

Prof. Laurence Shoup is a historian who has been researching the background and agendas of the Council on Foreign Relations for 40 years. He has taught history, social science and international relations at the University of Illinois, San Francisco State University and other institutions. For five decades Dr. Shoup has been active in human rights struggles, protesting the Vietnam War, marching with Martin Luther King and participating in the union movement. He holds degrees from California State University and a doctorate from Northwestern. He ran as a Green Party candidate in the city of Oakland and California state and consulted for many nonprofit organizations. Laurence has written five books, his most recent being “Wall Street’s Think Tank: The Council on Foreign Relations and the Empire of Neoliberal Geopolitics 1976-2014” His website is www.LaurenceShoup.com

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Expat Files – 08.07.15

-What’s the story on childhood vaccinations in Latin America?

How many shots are required and at what intervals? Are all kids required to get them? Can parents opt their kids out or otherwise get around it? Is 3rd world lax about it or is there 1st world Nazi-style enforcement? Do Latins even understand the controversy around vaccines, their adjutants and toxic additives?

-A Latin American real estate update:

The real estate bubble seems to creeping all over Latin America. Its settling in while simultaneously straining and cracking around the edges. Meanwhile, since no one’s got the money or credit to buy (except certain gringos and Europeans) it’s turning into an unbelievable renter’s market. There are great deals for those with patience, a good eye and adequate “boots on the ground”. However, don’t expect to get any great deals surfing the net in Cleveland whist sitting on the sofa eating bon-bons. Note that what rents for $1000 a month on the net you can usually negotiate in person down to $600.

-Beware of glossy ads with happy gringo faces selling and promoting real estate projects and developments. When the gringos are in the sales and promo end you can predict just one thing- a top of the local Latin land and housing market is near.

-More solid proof that the gringo advantage is alive and well (when off the gringo tourist trail). Today we have more expat stories proving a 1st world type Big Brother state Latin style is far, far off in the future.

-CONSULT WITH JOHNNY- SCHEDULE A CELL OR SKYPE CALL:

Follow the consult link on the main page at www.ExpatWisdom.com and Johnny will help you sort out your Latin American plans.

ColombiaRT2

Colombian Report on US Military’s Child Rapes Not Newsworthy to US News Outlets

An 800-page independent report commissioned by the US-friendly Colombian government and the radical left rebel group FARC found that US military soldiers and contractors had sexually abused at least 54 children in Colombia between 2003 and 2007 and, in all cases, the rapists were never punished–either in Colombia or stateside–due to American military personnel being immune from prosecution under diplomatic …

Civil Society Denounces World Bank’s Conference on Land & Poverty

Oakland, CA — Every spring for the last fifteen years, the World Bank has organized the “Conference on Land and Poverty,” which brings together corporations, governments and civil society groups. The aim is ostensibly to discuss how to “improve land governance.” Whereas the 16th conference will take place in Washington D.C. from March 23 to 27, hundreds of civil society organizations are …