Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Five Years Ago Today

Getting to know the devil

By Moristotle

[Originally published on June 14, 2012, not one word different.]

I completed one of those political questionnaires yesterday that, besides seeking numbers to rank election issues, seeks to gauge how likely it is that you might donate money to the party. To a direct question whether I’ll donate, I checked the “no” box and found myself explaining, “I don’t have money to waste on stupid political money wars.”
    And I was thinking, The one percent who are in a position to outspend me (and everyone else I know combined) already own most of the country anyway. Political campaigns anymore seem designed to make the poor poorer and the rich richer. I just don’t care to participate in it.

Apropos that thought, a friend [Ed Rogers] told me recently that he and his wife are moving to Costa Rica:
Costa Rica is like it was here in the 50s, only we still have all the goodies. The temp is 72 to 83 during the day and in the lower 60s at night. Spring year round. We can live there, for $1,500 a month. That includes everything.
    If the Dems lose big this year, you can kiss Medicare as we know it good-bye. Unlike the US, Costa Rica has in their Constitution that healthcare is a human right. Can you see the wonderful people of the good old USA agreeing with that?
    We may get down there and after a year hate it; but what the hell, we’re not going to live forever and everybody needs one last great adventure.
    I told him that I would never do anything like that myself. But the only reason I could give him was, Better the devil you know than the devil you don’t.
    And I’m not even sure what that means.

Interestingly, when my wife and I were in Bulgaria last year, I found myself remarking, “What if we retired here?” (As you know, I often just find myself doing things, and more and more often, after reading Sam Harris’s book Free Will, wonder why. In this case, I think I was just being whimsical.)
    However, out of curiosity, my wife checked into whether we could even collect our United States social security checks if we lived in Bulgaria. She found out we couldn’t.
    I’m pretty sure my friend will be able to receive his social security checks in Costa Rica. I tried to confirm this by googling “in what countries can americans collect social security.” The second link listed took me to a Social Security website that provided the following general information:

If you are a United States citizen, you may receive your Social Security benefits outside the United States as long as you are eligible for them. Regardless of your citizenship, there are certain countries that we are not allowed to send payments. For more information, please see the section titled Countries To Which We Cannot Send Payments in Your Payments While You Are Outside The United States (Publication No. 05-10137).
    If you are planning to be outside the United States for six consecutive calendar months or more, you can find out if you can receive your Social Security payment by using the Payments Abroad Screening Tool.
Costa Rica seems to be okay.
    Hmm, healthcare in its Constitution, eh? And what season was that year round?

Copyright © 2017 by Moristotle


  1. For an update Morris. I kept a checking account here in the States. My SS was sent and deposited there. I had a bank account in Costa Rica where once a month I would write a check on my US account. It worked out very well as I could still pay any bills I had in the US over the internet.