1. You'll find a lot of Americans here in Panama, especially in the "Interior" like Chiriqui, but they are not, for the most part, Americans the average person would want to associate with. They couldn't afford to retire in a real place, so they came here... So you know the socio-economic status of these "immigrants"...
2. If you are coming to Panama to escape economic, or other problems in the U.S.A. let me give you a little advice as someone with a degree in economics. This is a DOLLAR-BASED economy and it is almost 90 percent SERVICE SECTOR. To make a long story short, a collapse in the US economy/dollar would impact this country more severely than in the USA. If you think you would fare better here, right now this country can't produce enough to feed itself and you'd have two million people in Panama City two or three days walk to any point in the country, so if you think you'll have that little finca (farm) in the hills and escape, forget it.
3. I read about immigration to Panama on the Internet and I can get a visa easily and then get a Panamanian passport. Both of those are just pure B.S. and if you do some real research you'll find that many of these sites are connected to real estate companies or law firms with everything to gain by conning you.
4. Crime is everywhere here and expats make easy targets. Many wind up dead. Many years ago it was only property crime, now it is frequent violent crime. No matter how bad you think it is where you live in the USA, I assure you it is worse here.
5. This is a filthy country. If you enjoy roadsides, beaches and rivers/streams with trash everywhere, than be my guest. If you want to live in Panama City, watch out for the raw sewage that bubbles from the ground.
6. The girls here love Americans... Perhaps it is better stated that Panamanian women love to USE AMERICANS. Years ago things were different, but now the women here see Americans and Europeans as "meal tickets" out of there situations. If you want to use or be used by women, I would recommend that you visit a prostitute.
7. I hate Obama and Socialism so I'm going to run to Panama. I can't think of a single administration in Panama that is not ten times worse than anything the USA has ever had. There is "price fixing" of most goods here, exclusive distribution rights, and within this country there is no such thing as "free trade."
8. Well Panama City looks so modern and beautiful... Look at Panama City at night. Most of the buildings have no lights on. The fact is, Panama and Panama City are built on financial crimes. Take that away and this place implodes overnight...