Letters to the Editor

December 28, 2015 Edition

Editor,

We were in Baja last month, on November 17th, and travelled from Cabo to La Paz in a rental car. Along the way, we stopped in Las Barilles for lunch. While waiting for lunch, we grabbed a copy of your paper. (It may have been an older paper dated the beginning of November). There were four of us, and we noticed the article titled, “what to do if you are stopped by a cop in Mexico”. Or something similar. It was of interest, so we read it aloud while eating lunch.

After lunch, we continued on the road and, lo and behold, we were stopped by a mexican policeman for speeding. With the article fresh in our minds, we did exactly as your brilliant writer suggested: we refused to pay for the ticket direct to the cop as the cop suggested, we insisted that we would be more than willing to go to the nearest police department, and looked for his badge. Of course, as predicted by your writer, he had no name badge visible. He kept insisting we could pay $50. then and there, and several times we insisted that we would rather go to the police department. As your writer suggested, he let us go.

Thank you, Thank you , Thank you.

Please pass this on to the writer.

Sincerely,

Pat Phillips

 

Editor,

Some of your readership may benefit from a mention of ways to get help if a vehicle breaks down on the Baja peninsula roads. The other day a family in a car flagged me down about 50 km north of Loreto on the highway. They asked me to call for a tow truck. I reported it to the military checkpoint just north of Loreto. After checking with other staff they said they would call, but suggested that I also call when I got to Loreto. I called the 074 number displayed on the road signs and spoke to someone in Monterrey who said they didn’t operate in Baja. I then tried an 088 number and spoke to another person who also told me they couldn’t help. They also suggested that I would be liable for costs if I called a local mechanic or tow truck and sent them out. Plus, of course, others may have contacted a mechanic and had them go out also. As I’ve now checked on the web, there is also a 078 number and several possible numbers for the Green Angels. So is there any formal/optimal way of getting help for a car that has broken down on the carretera or other roads in Baja?

 John Hodgson

Via email

Geeze, what a nightmare.  None that I know of, I always feel I’m on my own in the case of a breakdown. Or worse.

Every time we give out a number that the govt p.r. flacks give us, it turns out to not work.  Editor

 

 

Editor,

Please do not paint all who renounce U.S. citizenship as mere tax-dodging millionaires trying to hide their money overseas; even if some do so, do you really want to make the case – as some hypocritical politicians do – that avoiding (not cheating) taxes is immoral?

The United States is one of few countries that taxes almost all earnings (with few exceptions) of its citizens living and working abroad, and has bullied nations around the globe into burdensome reporting requirements for U.S. citizens holding foreign bank accounts.

The US tax code has become one of the most cumbersome, convoluted, contradictory and special interest-laden pieces of regulation ever, and the average citizen has little chance of understanding or changing it.

While many point proudly to the U.S. as one of the most free, business-friendly economies in the world it should be noted that much of that is corporate, and has come at the expense of the average working man and small business owner. Anyone earning money overseas, paying taxes in their new country of residence and receiving no benefits from the money given to the US government must surely think “Why do I pay these US taxes?”

Damon Cruz

Via email ,