Updated below - Have you ever flown a hot air balloon? Your editor has. It's simple: You use burners to fill the balloon with hot air, which goes up. You take off and fly. To stay at height, you use those burners to top up the air. To come down to the earth again, there is a valve you can open, with a rope, on top of the balloon so hot air escapes.
The problem with Don Winner is that he doesn't have such a valve; a major design flaw that leaves him perpetually filled with hot air.
You can see that at work in his "coverage" of the latest case of a dead gringo expat. A 72 year old woman, Georgia Tripp, was found dead in her home in Volcan, in the province of Chiriqui. The authorities are investigating. She was reportedly liked by everyone.
Murder? Suicide? Who the hell knows? Oh, wait, Don Winner knows! Here's how he ranted and raved against Eric Jackson on Panama Forum, a yahoo group where all the weird Hawaiian shirt expats hang out:
In these kinds of cases I almost always have additional information which I withhold (by choice) so as not to jeopardize the investigation. Normally I withhold this information until there is an arrest. I am currently withholding information on several murder cases and ongoing investigations, waiting for an arrest to be made.
In this case there are very important and significant details which I know about, the detectives know about, and you (clearly) DO NOT. So please, do us all a favor and focus on writing about what you know. Facts.
The reporting in the Panamanian press is obviously coming from low level sources in the National Police. As usual, they get some of the fundamental facts in the case wrong. My sources are much better.
There was a single stab wound to the back of Georgia’s neck. The detectives of the DIJ of the National Police and the prosecutor’s are treating this case as a homicide (fact). Maybe you can explain how anyone can have an accident or kill themselves by giving themselves a deep single puncture wound to the back of the right side of the neck.
Calling me a “demagogue” once again simply highlights the fact that your hatred for me over rides your ability to cover any story in a professional and objective manner.
In short, pound sand (first) and get a clue (second).
One more thing – your writing sucks. You’re a bad writer with no access, speculating about what might have happened, while covering it all with a tremendous bias, and an apparent need to make everyone think like you, doused in mental illness. Wow. Good luck with that. Sucks … on … ice. And that’s why you’re broke.
So, Don Winner and his impeccable sources and the secret inside information he manages inside his head tell him that Mrs. Tripp died of a stab wound in her neck. Are you sure, Don Winner? Yes, he is very sure because he is better informed and has more access than anyone else on the entire planet somewhere way below him!
But wait! Just a bit later, Winner, still quoting his inside access to the top secret police movers and shakers managing the investigations, writes:
According to a highly placed and impeccably reliable source in the Panamanian National Police, the American Georgia Tripp who was found murdered in front of her home in the Brisas del Norte section of Volcan in the province of Chiriqui was actually strangled to death, and was not stabbed as originally reported.
The police received the official autopsy report today from the medical examiner. According to that report, Georgia Tripp was not stabbed and she did not have any stab wounds on her body, despite the fact that a bread knife was found under her right leg. Initial reports from the scene indicated there was a stab wound to the back of her neck on the right side, but it now turns out that those observations were incorrect. She did have an injury to the back of her head, consistent with falling to the ground after she was strangled to death. But the cause of death was clearly established in the autopsy report - she was strangled to death and not stabbed.
You see? That's how well-informed Don Winner really is, with his inside sources and additional information and secret knowledge bullshit. One day it's a stab wound and don't you dare question his supreme knowledge, and the next it is in fact a strangle wound and of course he is always right.
Winner has no inside sources or access, he just makes everything up from what he reads in the tabloids. He hasn't seen the autopsy report. He doesn't know shit about this case. His "reporting" is one big fraud.
But as said, he lacks that valve that lets the hot air escape every now and then and return to earth. And this whole episode is about his little nazi ego, about scaring expats into joining crazy militias and buying the stun guns he is promoting.
Update 20/03: You know what's really sad? Don Winner posted a lengthy defense of his bullshit reporting on his website, and you actually have to pay to read his lame excuses! Just now his story has 123 views. This article you're reading now has about a thousand, and counting. The man has obviously no clue what he's doing.
The man is a penis. He has zero journalistic credentials and zero flair for writing.
Panama needs this puffed up blow-hard like a hole in the head
Please don´t insult penises. They are useful.
Imagine what these Panamanian officials think when this little wannabe is hovering around them. They probably feed him some cuento chino and have a good laugh.
Every ex-pat community has a Don Winner and usually no one takes them to seriously. It´s like having a crazy uncle that keeps everyone amused. But in Panama most ex-pats are as crazy as the uncle. Instead of having a good laugh they get all agitated like a ward of mental patients.
I wonder if a sociologist could gauge the mental health of a country by studying the type of ex-pat that collects there, like entomologists can identify animal shit by the bugs that live in it.
Faustino, a good sociological question – why does Panama attract such extraordinarily high numbers of expat wankers? From Bocas to Boquete, David to Panama City, there’s no escaping them!
I lived in Nicaragua for some time and did not experience the same level of right-wing, reactionary guff from the expat community. On the contrary, most of them were cool (Granada is the big exception, a notorious haunt of scrotal rednecks, leches, and sex offenders).
Part of it is the history of the Canal zone and US military here. Some of the worst protagonist of extreme right-wing bile come from that background, sporting a racist colonial sense of entitlement.
Another reason is that Panama’s attraction as it was promoted over the last years was that it’s cheap. Cheap real estate, low cost of living, cheap women – everything cheap, while being safe unlike Nicaragua. So you get cheap people looking for a bargain lifestyle where they can even afford to exploit a maid for $200 a month.
Dear Exiled Brit,
The answer to your question about why such a large percentage of looney-tunes US ex-pats are in Panamá has to do with the former US occupied Panamá Canal Zone. There are a great many bitter former employees of the Panama Canal Company employees who retired there who are angry that their socialist, US taxpayer subsidized lifestyle came to an abrupt halt on January 1, 2000. There are also a great many former Armed Forces civilian employees who are equally bitter about their same socialist, US taxpayer funded lifestyle came mostly to an abrupt end on January 1, 2000. Then there are the wingnut US retirees who have been conned into investing their life savings into faux get-rich-quick schemes ably assisted by the object of this article and are now too invested in Panamá to leave the money that they were conned out of. These three groups make up the great majority of the ex-pat community in Panamá. They also have this crackpot idea that they are going to lead the coup that brings the Canal back under US control and be considered the new US patriots of Bunker Hill for their efforts. They’ve never heard the old axiom that, “Never bring a stun gun to a rifle fight.” But I guess they’ll learn the hard way if they can ever get organized enough to start their idiotic adventure. Which is highly doubtful, given their considerably unbalanced mental state.
Anyway, welcome to the wonderful world of the wingnut ex-pat in Panamá. It’s amusing and at times positively hilarious if you never, ever take them seriously. If you take them seriously, it tends to drive your mental condition to the extreme edge of sanity and has been known to push it over the edge into the abyss with they rest of the wingnut ex-pats.
Jim in the US
Who wishes desperately he could get back to the country of his birth and away from these 28 degree F. mornings.
The only connection he thinks he has with the Authorities here in Panama is an attempt to entrap his beloved Panamanian National Police:
He is so beloved, that he has been asked not to return to their HQ at Ancon!
As retired E-5 with over twenty years of US Air Force Service as a lowly console operator on a C130 Picket aircraft, with a full blown course in Korean from the Armed Forces Linguistics school in Monterey, California.
One would wonder why with these so-called advance Korean Language skills and his labyrinth of advance online degrees, he would live in Panama.
After perusing his blog for over eight years now, a very prevalent pattern arises with his various obsession with prostitutes, Murders, criminals, human trafficking of women and children, money launderers, petty scam artists, and just plain right wing zealot Fascist psychopaths while plagiarizing nearly everything he touches with his editorial hype with his purely delusional depictions of his vast importance to the Expat, Gringo community, and the Republic of Panama!.
Don the wankers rambling rhetoric for the Right wing Republicans abroad groups, with his overly Fascist political leanings, his overly greedy appetite for exploiting the mineral wealth, his pure discrimination against the indigenous peoples and the poor which speaks volumes about his complete lack of understanding within the Culture of Panamanian People, after living in Panama for over 21 years..
Why has he not been deported form Panama?
Could it be factual he may receive petty funding and other unmentioned benefits from this Criminal Fascist Martinelli Government to Propagandize the Gringo’s and Expats in to believing Panama is still a safe place to live, retire, and invest??
Hmmm, hasn’t he claimed that he is an ex-intelligence military person? Can’t stand his stuff — you’re right in a way. It’s not hot air he’s filled with, but he is filled with his own self importance.
don the wanker had a clearance most likely just a “NEED TO KNOW” type!
Nothing more than a low level clearance.
He was not even a MI analyst!
Which he would have had to have a much higher clearance!
The Korean language training is what is not making sense, one would exploit training such as this and parlay it into a money making retirement at least!
Korean linguists are in high demand by the State Department, USAF, Army, Navy, & Marine Reserves, DEA, Home land Security and of course the CIA!
Especially with any type of clearance less than ten years old.
Looks like he could not pass the Civil Service Exam with a high enough score to even rate for those agencies!
Even with his 5 point or 10 point veterans preference.
If you have had any real life experience, you can see right through this moronic idiots subterfuge.
He is one of the most self delusional people here in Panama!
Why would they deport Winner? He is a party clown for the Panamanians. He doesn´t charge clown wages. Panamanians like a bit of crazy.
¿Que pasó loco?
I don’t think he should be deported either. A cage would do.
According to wanker’s rose colored view, violence and murder rarely touch the gringo community in panama, he must have said that a hundred times, yet story after story on his blog he writes about murdered gringos. What do we have about 5,000 gringos in panama? And hundreds have been murdered in the last decade (albiet many at the hands of their own Hawaiian-shirt-wearing brethren)
So 5000 gringos in panama, probably 500 murdered over the last 10 years, by my back of the napkin calculation, if you retire to panama and live here10 years you have about a one in 10 chance of being murdered. fun stuff! But not to worry it’s a tropical paradise with crystal blue waters and rolling idyllic hills, blah blah blah….BUY NOW!!!
I think the number of gringos here is MUCH higher, more like 30,000 or so. At least that’s a number that was mentioned couple of years ago.
well i guess its only a 1-2% change of getting whacked then. 30,000 Hawaiian shirt wearers, wow, someone should open a Tommy Bahamas franchise here, they’d clean up.
No one really know how Gringos/Expats live full time in Panama!
From everything I can find it is between 5000 and maybe to 30,000, I highly doubt the large figure!
Immigration, Health, Public Registry Ministries, and the National Police can not give any up to date actuate numbers of how many gringos/Expats that do or have lived in Panama in the last 14 years!
Simply it seems to be some kind of state secret!
The Crime rate against Gringo/Expats is too high for the number that live here in Panama!
Most of the expats who live here do so as perpetual tourists. This makes them difficult to count.
Ever notice how the Wanker salivates when hearing of a dead gringo be it criminal or natural he begs for someone to send him information. Funny for a guy that has all the inside connections?
You guys have pretty much said it all. I’m guessing that the pay wall stategy has not been working so well for Mr. Winner. He’s been trying to facilitate real estate sales lately. (You don’t have to pay to read that.) And probably without a license by all the disclaimers he’s written into his spiel.
Winner never ceases to amaze me. He is a total fud.
To Jim in the US….what “socialist wing nuts” are you talking about?? I live here and a citizen as well. 90% of the US ex-pats I know or have met are hardcore Republicans. Some of which are extreme right wing Repubs and as Dr. Dias put it “just plain right wing zealot Fascist psychopaths”. Republicans are hardly “socialists”. They are more closely related to “fascists”. You’re simply way off base in your meandering rant. Stick you what you know, please. As far as Winner is concerned I do concur with many here. I’ve briefly met him and that was enough for me. He’s FOS. Very full of himself and has this heir of “entitlement” which I do not get at all. I’ve read much of his stuff and it’s always just “so-so”. Hey, he’s just trying to subsidize his retirement down here. Can’t really blame him for that. But, I just wish people would not take his writing to heart so much since most of it really is just his opinions presented as facts. By the way, for someone that doesn’t look so highly upon prostitutes you sure do see him often enough sitting outside at Manolo’s across from the Veneto! Oh, maybe he just likes the Tres Leche there. *tongue in cheek*