Correa Wants 1,000 Cuban Doctors to Work in Ecuador

Rafael Correa. Photo: cubadebate.cu
Rafael Correa. Photo: cubadebate.cu

HAVANA TIMES — After returning from a visit to Cuba, Ecuadorian president Rafael Correa announced Saturday that he hopes to bring 1,000 Cuban physicians with different specialties to Ecuador, reported El Universo online.

Correa met with both Raul and Fidel Castro while on the island. His announcement came on his weekly radio program from Quito where he said the cost would be US $30 million a year, averaging US $30,000 per doctor.

Correa said the idea is to provide general family medical service in the neighborhoods, sounding similar to the Barrio Adentro program that is partially staffed by Cuban doctors in Venezuela.

He said “there is a lot to learn from Cuba’s medical system”, noted El Universo.

While in Cuba, Correa visited projects supported by Ecuador to build homes destroyed in Hurricane Sandy in 2012.

“We also need homes (in Ecuador) and we are going to build them, but there is always room for solidarity”, said Correa.



29 thoughts on “Correa Wants 1,000 Cuban Doctors to Work in Ecuador

  • Now you know how I “feel”? I never wrote I was an authority or expert on Ecuador. I have expressed my opinion, which, by the way is shared by quite a few people. Likewise, you “feel” you know more about the US than I do? Hahaha!

  • “Reread my comments. I never said I was an authority.”

    No, you just feel qualified to call an entire electorate fools for not voting the way you would. You just feel you have the solutions Ecuador needs and the Ecuadorian voters are just too stupid to see reality.

    “Just like you are
    no expert with regards to my country.”

    I have a feeling I know even more about your country than you do. You are clearly not a “learner”. You’re one of those delusional sociopaths who start with a conclusion then use lies to make it seem plausible.

    “But the crowd I hung out with was
    well-informed and just because they seemed well-off by Ecuadoran
    standards doesn’t make them bad people.”

    You consider yourself well informed when you clearly all you know is demonstrably false propaganda so your assessment that the people you were with are well informed is meaningless.

    “No, I am not high, but you need
    to drink less coffee. You are too keyed up.”

    In other words, you can’t debate me on facts so you’ve fallen back on your amateur psychological assessment over the internet. You lose. I’m sure you’re used to that. You’ve convinced nobody readers of your position and only revealed yourself to be a fraud. You have my permission to get the last word and go away now.

  • “Libel laws in the UK are designed to protect private citizens. Not the
    Prime Minister.”

    So you know even less about UK libel laws than you do about Ecuadorian libel laws.

    “Unlike Correa, when bad things are said about Cameron,
    he lets it go.”

    No UK newspaper would dare falsely accuse the president of war crimes with out so much as a single piece of evidence or testimony because they know the legal consequences.

    “He does not threaten to put people in jail”

    Dozens of people are jailed every year under UK libel laws and tens of millions of dollars in fines are issued. In fact, you don’t even have to be in or from the UK to be subjected to their libel laws. Anything published in the UK or even seen over a web site is actionable. People from all around the world are sued under the UK’s laws every year even though they’ve never been to the UK. Again, you have no idea what you’re talking about.

    “Compulsory
    voting, like any thing humans do because they are forced to do it can
    lead to distortions.”

    Voter apathy has certainly led your country to some serious distortions.

    “People who don’t care enough to vote because they
    want to and only do so because they have to may cast a less than
    well-informed vote.”

    Do you have a single shred of evidence that this is the case or is the rest of the world supposed to write their legislation according to your own uninformed predictions?

    “Common sense.”

    i.e., whatever preconceived notion you already held.

    “The US is the oldest CONTINUING
    democracy. Iceland formally became an independent republic as recent as
    1944.”

    You’re moving the goalposts. You said continuing democracy, not independent republic.

    “Check your facts again.”

    They aren’t my facts. They’re THE facts.

    “Never said I was an expert on Ecuador.”

    No, you just tried to invalidate my own position on the question “have you ever been to Ecuador?”

    “Your reading comprehension is lacking here.”

    No, your writing skills are lacking.

    “I guess you are saying
    Venezuela is better off now.”

    So is every economic indicator.

    “Most Venezuelans disagree with you.”

    Then why did most Venezuelans vote for Maduro and then why did they vote for his party by a 10-percent margin in last Decembers elections?

    “But I
    guess you know better than they do.”

    Apparently you know better than voters everywhere who make choices you wouldn’t.

    “Comparing Ecuador to the US is a
    poor choice.”

    Depends on the comparison, but you’re trying to change the subject again.

    “Tiny South American country in comparison to the most
    powerful republic in the history of the world.”

    You’ll be carrying golf bags for the Chinese in less than a generation.

    “Nothing to compare.”

    Because we all know how US sociology, physiology, biology, and even physics for that matter are completely different.

    “Claiming that you know I don’t speak Spanish is stupid.”

    Claiming you can when you know you don’t is psychotic.

    “Nothing against
    the Ecuadoran people except I hope they are all not like you.”

    According to the latest polls, 82% are like me. You represent the 18%. Congratulations.

    “Its your
    wannabe dictator who bugs me. Not really though because what does
    Ecuador matter to anybody anywhere anyway?”

    Exactly. Why does it matter? Why has your government spent so much money trying to overturn the will of the electorate? For that matter, why do you keep responding?

    “The power of the US to
    influence world matters has its ebbs and flows. Tuesday, Obama will
    speak to the General Assembly. More people will pay attention to his
    speech than other world leader.”

    Wow. Congratulations. I’m sure you personally had a lot to do with that.

    “World markets will be affected by every
    word out of his mouth.”

    You do realize you sound like a sociopath right now, right?

    “That kind of power to change the planet must
    drive a hater like you nuts.”

    And there we have the gringo copout. Anyone you can’t convince of your morally corrupt philosophy is a hater.

    “Especially when your President can barely
    get Ecuador to listen to his speeches.”

    How many have you been to?

    “By the way, I noticed that you
    didn’t refute any of my country’s #1 rankings. It must suck to live in a
    country that could disappear entirely from the planet and no one would
    notice.”

    How would you know? You’ve never been here.

    But again, you’ve given up trying to argue the merits and resorted to silly insults that have no effect because they aren’t founded in reality. It must be sad to be a nobody who has never accomplished anything. It explains why you argue with people on the internet. People in your real life already know you’re a fraud so you try to reinvent yourself here. Que baboso.

  • OK, now you are just being stupid. Libel laws in the UK are designed to protect private citizens. Not the Prime Minister. Unlike Correa, when bad things are said about Cameron, he lets it go. He does not threaten to put people in jail. Compulsory voting, like any thing humans do because they are forced to do it can lead to distortions. People who don’t care enough to vote because they want to and only do so because they have to may cast a less than well-informed vote. Common sense. The US is the oldest CONTINUING democracy. Iceland has been conquered and governed by occupying forces several times in the last 250 years. Check your facts again. Never said I was an expert on Ecuador. Your reading comprehension is lacking here. I guess you are saying Venezuela is better off now. Most Venezuelans disagree with you. But I guess you know better than they do. Comparing Ecuador to the US is a poor choice. Tiny South American country in comparison to the most powerful republic in the history of the world. Nothing to compare. Claiming that you know I don’t speak Spanish is stupid. Nothing against the Ecuadoran people except I hope they are all not like you. Its your wannabe dictator who bugs me. Not really though because what does Ecuador matter to anybody anywhere anyway? The power of the US to influence world matters has its ebbs and flows. Wednesday, Obama will speak to the General Assembly. More people will pay attention to his speech than other world leader. World markets will be affected by every word out of his mouth. That kind of power to change the planet must drive a hater like you nuts. Especially when your President can barely get Ecuador to listen to his speeches. By the way, I noticed that you didn’t refute any of my country’s #1 rankings. It must suck to live in a country that could disappear entirely from the planet and no one would notice.

  • Reread my comments. I never said I was an authority. Just like you are no expert with regards to my country. But the crowd I hung out with was well-informed and just because they seemed well-off by Ecuadoran standards doesn’t make them bad people. No, I am not high, but you need to drink less coffee. You are too keyed up.

  • Palling around with a wealthy businessman married to a Cuban exile while hanging out with a well-off crowd made you an authority on Ecuador? Are you high?

  • Once again, in summary:

    Libel laws in Ecuador are bad. Harsher libel laws that are applied at a rate a hundred times greater in the UK, change the subject.

    Compulsory voting in Ecuador produces “less desirable” results (for someone, anyway). Compulsory voting in Australia, France, Uruguay, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg and Singapore and 16 other countries, change the subject.

    The US is the oldest continuous democracy in existence. Iceland’s democracy dates back to 530 years before Europeans discovered the Americas and has functioned continuously since then, change the subject.

    Two-weeks vacation with a wealthy family in Ecuador is more than enough exposure to consider yourself an expert. I live in Ecuador, change the subject.

    Correa has jailed his political opponents and critics. When asked for a name, change the subject.

    Correa has shut down critical newspapers. Asked for a name, change the subject.

    When pressed, you admit nobody has actually been jailed for being an opponent or critic, but it still has muzzled the press. The fact that the private press is a nonstop anti-Correa feeding frenzy all day and night, change the subject.

    Have you been to the grocery stores in Caracas lately? I have, you haven’t. Change the subject.

    When you force someone to vote, they are more likely to use that vote in less than desirable form. Asked to provide any support that such an argument is valid, change the subject.

    Reporters without Borders’ agree that these Stasi tactics have a chilling effect on the freedom of the press in Ecuador. Asked for a single example of this effect, change the subject.

    “The fact is that the middle class is destroyed and inflation may hit 70% by the end of the year.”

    The Venezuelan middle class is being destroyed and inflation could possibly (in your imagination) hit 70% by the end of the year. Meanwhile, the middle class is twice the number of people it was 15 years while the inflation rate has averaged lower over the past 15 years than during ANY period in Venezuelan history, change the subject.

    Referring to the US in a discussion about Ecuador is deflection. Bringing up Venezuela in a discussion about Ecuador, change the subject.

    “Like your assumption that I don’t speak Spanish, you make a lot of unfounded assumptions to sustain your anti-US profile.”

    I maintain you don’t speak Spanish and every assumption you post has been demonstrated to be not only completely unfounded, but demonstrably false. Still you sustain your anti-Ecuador profile anyway.

    The really strange thing is I can’t understand how someone who clearly knows nothing factual about Ecuador can hate it so much. The really scary thing is you live in a country that has a very long history of overthrowing any democratically-elected government that won’t sellout its people. In fact, your government has overthrown more democracies and installed more brutal dictators than any extant nation on Earth. Oh wait, there’s a category you lead. I guess you broke the top 20 on something.

    I suspect you won’t address any of the above inconsistencies in your argument but you’ll reply anyway.

  • “While there may not be any newspaper executives in Ecuadoran jails as a result of the harsh media laws, it is only because Correa has pardoned those who were convicted these laws.”

    Only because? That happened to exactly 2 people in 1 case and they were convicted of contempt of court after losing a libel case under the OLD media law, the one you claim should have remained the same. Do you hear yourself?

    “What these actions do is instill fear in the media.”

    LOL! Yeah, they’re really afraid. That’s why they bash Correa all day long on TV, in the newspaper and on the radio.

    “International press organizations like ‘Reporters without Borders’ agree with me that these Stasi tactics have a chilling effect on the freedom of the press in Ecuador.”

    Is that the same RWB criticized by actual reporters as “not an organization that defends freedom of the press, but is an obscure entity with a political agenda precisely commissioned to discredit through all possible means the progressive governments in the world that find themselves on the United States’ blacklist.”? Is that the same RWB funded by the NED (i.e., the US State Department)? And like you, they can’t list a single example. Like you, they base their argument on what could “possibly” happen in the future. 8 years into the future and we still haven’t seen a single prediction come true, but it can so therefore Ecuador is not a democracy. Now the US, which has disenfranchised tens of millions of citizens’ of their right to vote because they were caught with a sack of weed, in which barely half the electorate participates in any given election and there is no paper trail in most states and voting machines are manufactured by companies that donate to a single party, where the Supreme Court appoints a man who received half a million votes less than his opponent because there’s not enough time to do a recount, where voters are limited to a choice between candidates selected in backroom deals by unelected party officials, 2 parties that have had a monopoly on political discourse for a century, where money is speech and corporations are people, where the Bill of Rights has been repealed through the decisions of secret judges in secret cases and free speech at public events is limited to a “free speech zone” as far away from the event being protested as possible, now THAT’S a democracy.

    “The overwhelming majority of the libel cases in the UK involve private plaintiffs.”

    As do the overwhelming majority of libel cases here so I guess that means you don’t have a problem with it. I’m glad we settled that.

    “Different issue.”

    How is it a different issue when it’s the same? Well, the fines are a lot heavier in the UK, as are the jail sentences for violating a court order, so I guess that’s different.

    “Modern democracies generally expect our public servants to be thick-skinned.”

    Are Canada, Germany and the UK modern democracies? Who elected you to speak on behalf of “modern democracies” anyway? And since we all live in modern times, aren’t all democracies currently in existence modern democracies? You make up the lamest arguments I’ve ever read and you do it all the time. You clearly have a very big chip on your shoulder.

    ” We hold the most patents in technology and medicine.”

    Yet the China has registered twice as many patents in the past decade. Still living off the accomplishments of your grandparents?

    “You have a problem with America. OK. We’ll do alright with you.”

    Will you invade or just sponsor another coup this time?

    “My wife and I are helping a middle class couple (he’s a dentist, she’s a lawyer) from Venezuela squirl their hard-earned money out of Venezuela and into an account in the US because they plan to leave Venezuela sometime next year.”

    You just posted that you are laundering money in a public forum.

    “I just read that a political cartoonist in Venezuela was fired from her job with a national newspaper after the Maduro regime accused her of being dangerous.”

    Did you read it in the same journal that told you Correa imprisons his political opponents and people are being prosecuted for criticizing the government? Did that same journal tell you Chavez had $2 billion stashed away then admit that that rumor was actually started in a right wing blog? “I read” is not a statement of fact, it only illustrates your inability to analyze what you read critically. The fact that Correa has an 82% approval rating should give you pause, but you are so deluded you think you know more about what is really happening here than over 4/5 of the Ecuadorian public. How did you gain such intimate knowledge? Oh yeah, two weeks vacation (that you’re lying about) and you read some newspapers, newspapers in which you read all the “Spanish” criticisms of Correa but the newspapers aren’t allowed to print criticism. Again I have to ask you, do you even read what you post?

    “I have never been to Caracas but I trust my friends when they tell me that the shelves are often thin if not bare.”

    And there you blew your cover. The shortages are in border states because people buy the goods in shops at subsidized prices and then sell them for dollars at retail prices in Colombia. There are no shortages in Caracas. You’re busted.

    “I forgot her name and I am too lazy to look it up.”

    And you’re lying so there’s really no point.

    “The point is that when even cartoonist can seen as dangerous, there is a real problem with freedom of the press.”

    Does bringing up Venezuela in a discussion about Ecuador also constitute deflection, or is that only when someone mentions the US?

    “By the way, are you really trying to defend what is going on in Venezuela by arguing that it could be or was worse? Really, is that the best you can do?”

    The best you can do is defend an economic system that had far worse outcomes for inflation, poverty, government oppression, jailed journalists and shuttered newspapers, all the things you claim to care so much about for Ecuadorians (and Venezuelans). It’s clear that your only true conviction is to get the last word no matter how stupid you sound.

    You still aren’t fooling anyone and you’re making a royal fool of yourself in this public forum. I just thought I’d remind you before you make it worse.

  • “Did you know that the US is the oldest continuing democracy in the world?”

    Did you know Iceland has had continuous parliamentary elections since 960?

    “Ecuador is compulsory and therefore subject to criticism.”

    Will you be criticizing Australia as well? The fine for not voting there is 10 times what it is here. Then of course there are the other 21 countries, but you had no idea.

    “The criticism
    is based on the valid argument that when you force someone to vote, they
    are more likely to use that vote in less than desirable form.”

    And since that is a “valid argument”, you have actual evidence to support the assertion that someone is “more likely” to use that vote in a “less desirable form”, right? Of course not. You make it up as you go along. It isn’t even logical on the surface. If someone is voting, they are expressing their desire. How could an individual’s expression of their desire be “less desirable” to that voter? And if the majority agree, who exactly was it less desirable to? How do you define “desirable” in this context anyway? Who am I kidding? You avoid every question put to you because you’re faking it.

    “It is disingenuous to use the high turnout numbers without making compulsory nature of the voting known.”

    I was supposed to specify that? You try to pass yourself off as an expert on Ecuador yet you weren’t aware that voting here is compulsory. It is disingenuous to feign indignity in lieu of finally admitting you don’t know what you’re talking about.

    So now that we’ve settled those lame attempts at distraction (sigh, again), do you care to get back to any of the dozen or so questions you’ve been avoiding, or are you finally willing to admit that you’re a fake?

  • Did you know that the US is the oldest continuing democracy in the world? Part of our success is that Americans are not compelled to participate. Voting in Ecuador is compulsory and therefore subject to criticism. The criticism is based on the valid argument that when you force someone to vote, they are more likely to use that vote in less than desirable form. It is disingenuous to use the high turnout numbers without making compulsory nature of the voting known.

  • Your comments reflect a reasonably intelligent mind. However, your ‘keyboard courage’ that leads you to all the name-calling is beneath that reasonable mind and does not serve you well. I will repeat, I speak and read Spanish. Move on. While there may not be any newspaper executives in Ecuadoran jails as a result of the harsh media laws, it is only because Correa has pardoned those who were convicted these laws. What these actions do is instill fear in the media. International press organizations like ‘Reporters without Borders’ agree with me that these Stasi tactics have a chilling effect on the freedom of the press in Ecuador. The overwhelming majority of the libel cases in the UK involve private plaintiffs. Different issue. Modern democracies generally expect our public servants to be thick-skinned. Keep in mind what is regularly said about Obama in the media and there are no consequences nor any expectation that there should be. The US continues to lead the world in a variety of life-affirming categories. We give the most foreign aid. Americans are by far the biggest private givers. We hold the most patents in technology and medicine. We are still the world’s preferred country to immigrate. And so on…. You have a problem with America. OK. We’ll do alright with you. My wife and I are helping a middle class couple (he’s a dentist, she’s a lawyer) from Venezuela squirl their hard-earned money out of Venezuela and into an account in the US because they plan to leave Venezuela sometime next year. I have never been to Caracas but I trust my friends when they tell me that the shelves are often thin if not bare. I just read that a political cartoonist in Venezuela was fired from her job with a national newspaper after the Maduro regime accused her of being dangerous. A cartoonist!! I forgot her name and I am too lazy to look it up. The point is that when even cartoonist can seen as dangerous, there is a real problem with freedom of the press. By the way, are you really trying to defend what is going on in Venezuela by arguing that it could be or was worse? Really, is that the best you can do?

  • “Correa used your harsh media laws to crack down on his media enemies.”

    You keep repeating that but when pressed for a name you change the subject. You’re a fraud.

    “In the UK and other free countries, the government better absorbs the criticism coming from opposition media. Is that so hard for you to understand?”

    Define “better”. There have been a total of 5 cases filed by government officials under this media law. There are hundreds filed every year in the UK and there have been since the 1990s. You don’t know what you’re talking about. Is that so hard for you to understand?

    “Your anti-US bias has blinded you to the reality that the US is still a great country.”

    Your pro-US brainwashing has blinded you to the reality that the US doesn’t rank in the top 20 in hardly anything.

    “Have you been to the grocery stores in Caracas lately?”

    Yes, and you’ve NEVER been there so answer the question.

    “The fact is that the middle class is destroyed and inflation may hit 70% by the end of the year.”

    The fact is, the middle class in Venezuela is the largest it has ever been and inflation was over 300% the year before Chavez was elected and has averaged over 90% since the 1970s. Everyone who knows Venezuela knows that inflation has been a part of life since the 1950s and in fact has been lower over the last 15 years than it has been since such statistics were kept (seriously, look it up, genius). Where was your concern for the plight of Venezuelans in the 1990s when inflation ran many times higher than it does now? Where was your concern in the 1980s when it was twice as high?

    You don’t know any of this because you don’t know what you’re talking about. You’re just repeating talking points trying to pass yourself off as an expert on this subject.

    “Opposition leaders continue to be intimidated or jailed and crime is at an all-time high.”

    Really? Name one. You can’t because you don’t know what you’re talking about. You just keep repeating what the US media tells you because you can’t read Spanish. But since you’re the expert here, you can explain why the highest crime rates and the lowest conviction rates are in opposition-controlled municipalities. I’d love to hear your analysis. I know you don’t actually know anything about this, but I’d love to see what you make up on the spot.

  • “Your election statistics are inflated which is typical
    in Latin America.”

    Really? Care to cite some evidence? How is it you figured out this great conspiracy but none of the hundreds of international observers did? BTW, who observes your elections?

    “Not exactly the seat of democracy.”

    You are very delusional.

    “Criticizing the US
    in a thread about Ecuador is called deflection.”

    No, it’s called providing context.

    “You used the term
    “corporate press”. Does that imply that you prefer “government press”?
    What kind of track record does government-controlled press have with
    being accurate and honest?”

    You claim to have read newspapers here and you ask that question? Like I said, you’re a charlatan.

  • One more thing: My two-week vacation in Ecuador was spent in the home of and palling around with a wealthy Ecuadoran businessman married to a Cuban woman and friend of my wife. I did not take one photo of anyone poor the entire time. Quite the opposite. I hung out with what seemed to be the well-off crowd. Like your assumption that I don’t speak Spanish, you make a lot of unfounded assumptions to sustain your anti-US profile.

  • Correa used your harsh media laws to crack down on his media enemies. In the UK and other free countries, the government better absorbs the criticism coming from opposition media. Is that so hard for you to understand? I read, understand and speak Spanish. Again, let it go. Your anti-US bias has blinded you to the reality that the US is still a great country. The growth of Ecuador’s economy and your use of our currency is testimony to that fact. Check your list of trading partners. By the way, what’s wrong with Venezuela you ask? Have you been to the grocery stores in Caracas lately? The fact is that the middle class is destroyed and inflation may hit 70% by the end of the year. Opposition leaders continue to be intimidated or jailed and crime is at an all-time high. Beyond that, its a paradise.

  • I speak Spanish. Your election statistics are inflated which is typical in Latin America. Not exactly the seat of democracy. Criticizing the US in a thread about Ecuador is called deflection. You used the term “corporate press”. Does that imply that you prefer “government press”? What kind of track record does government-controlled press have with being accurate and honest?

  • You don’t let facts in any way influence your misinformed opinion. You think you know more than the 82% of Ecuadorians who approve of Correa’s governance. When was the last time any government in your country had an 82% approval rating? When was the last time you elected a president with two-thirds of the electorate in consecutive elections with 98% turnouts? When was the last time you elected anyone that wasn’t selected in backroom deals by unelected officials of the two-party duopoly? And the basis for this expertise above and beyond the most popular government in the western world? The reason you know why we just keep voting against our own self interest and we don’t? The reason you’ve diagnosed our collective mental illness that we just can’t recognize without your enlightened opinion, an opinion that has been resoundingly rejected for a decade at the polls. A two week vacation to a country where you can’t even speak the language. Do you hear yourself? No, you don’t. You don’t listen. You just respond. Another one of those children that thinks getting the last word is the same thing as being right. Reality is completely subjective. No indicators matter. Not the will of the electorate, not every single economic indicator you can name, not the drastic improvements in school enrollment, healthcare, infrastructure investment, poverty, malnutrition, any indicator you can name. You just dictate nonsense as you go down the street, expounding your lofty opinions on subjects you know nothing about. Seriously, that’s not sane behavior. What exactly are you trying to compensate for?

    I don’t know if this is monumental delusion or typical gringo hubris, but it’s clear your opinion on anything going on here is meaningless because you repeatedly demonstrate that you don’t have the slightest idea what you’re talking about.

    I debunked all your points, in more detail that you’ve gotten from your corporate press in the past decade, points you immediately ignore and move on to the next talking point, yet you still dodge all my questions. You aren’t fooling anyone. You’re a charlatan.

    Q.E.D.

  • So in summary, you can’t name a single media outlet shut down by Correa, you can’t explain why the tens of millions handed down in fines every year in UK libel suits is less tyrannical than requiring a newspaper to print a retraction, you can’t name a single person who has been prosecuted for criticizing the government, you can’t explain why the overwhelming majority of libel cases are brought by private citizens who have their livelihoods destroyed by malicious millionaires with a printing press and you can’t understand why your two-week vacation and zero Spanish comprehension is no substitute for knowing what you’re talking about. I debunked your phony talking points in detail point by point with actual facts and your response is that I have unresolved issues? You have an unresolved issue not recognizing when you’re clearly out of your league. It’s pretty clear you lost this debate a long time ago but it won’t stop you from lofting yet another lame attempt to change the subject. Feel free to answer ANY of the many questions put to you.

    I’ve been hearing the “emerging dictatorship” meme for a decade now and all we’re left with is a government with an 82% approval rating, the longest period of political stability in the nation’s history with 98% turnouts at the polls (voting is required by law here), the fastest growing economy in its history and fewer people in poverty than ever. Anyone coming back to Ecuador (and we have the ONLY negative emmigration rate in Latin America, so many people seeking to be oppressed I guess) after 10 years wouldn’t even recognize the place, but you don’t understand that because you came once on a two-week vacation to take pictures of impoverished indigenous people with no running water or electricity. So quaint. I hope their poverty was photogenic. Why you continue to hold your opinion when every piece of “data” you used to form that opinion has been show to be false is beyond me. Then again, it’s becoming clear that you don’t rely on pesky concepts like reason or honesty to condemn a country you know nothing about. Far easier to quote State Department-funded NGOs and partisan hacks posing as journalists.

    Incidentally, a Yellow-dog Democrat is right wing everywhere in the developed world but like a typical gringo, you think your 3.6% percent of the human race is representative of the rest of the planet. There is no left left in US politics, just center right, far right and completely delusional like you. It’s the reason the US still believes it’s the Greatest Nation on Earth ™ despite not breaking 20th on any ranking of any importance. You’re a very delusional people and yours is typical of the myopic view of one of the shortest-lived also-ran empires in history. Your predictions are meaningless because you have no idea what you’re talking about. Your opinion is meaningless because you (demonstrably) don’t know what you’re talking about. You have clearly demonstrated that with your fact-free comments. Anyone reading this thread can clearly see that you’re a charlatan. Feel free to get the last word now so that you can get on with your meaningless hubris-filled life.

    BTW, what’s wrong with Venezuela? Or rather, what wasn’t wrong with Venezuela prior to 1999 that’s wrong now? You don’t know because you couldn’t find Venezuela on a map until they elected a government that didn’t do what Washington told them to do. In the process they cut poverty in half. Granted, there are still a lot of terrorist guarimberos burning down public buildings and murdering innocent commuters, but they’re limited to the rich sections of Caracas and Tachira. They’re literally destroying their own neighborhoods because they can’t win an election and you support them. Again, typical gringo. No actual facts to go on but your corporate-owned media told you to go to your 5 minutes of hate and like a good little German you got right into formation.

  • Wow. You must have some unresolved issues around this subject. Because you have put so much effort in responding including bringing up several tangential, at best, cases, I will try to respond. First, I am hardly right-wing. Card-carrying yellow dog Democrat I am. That means if the only candidate opposing the right-winger is a yellow dog, I will vote for the yellow dog. Second, I stand by my point. In the UK, the royals and the political elite are expected to be far more thick-skinned than private citizens. Heck, here in the US, the right-wing gets away with saying Obama was born in Kenya and yet no lawsuits are brought. Correa’s actions were clearly intended to instill fear in the media. A fearful media is a Castro ploy used to control the message. Third, you are well to assert to say that you know more about this issue than I do. With respect, an emerging dictatorship in tiny Ecuador means diddly to most Americans and has less impact on our lives than the weather. Still, I try to keep up and I do more than read Wikipedia, much more. As a result, what I have written in these comments are my informed opinions and no one else’s. These are not talking points. Again, the use of talking points is more likely to come from a Castro sycophant than from me. I am accustomed to thinking for myself. Fourth, it seems that you take issue with newspapers owned by rich people. Why is that? Is being poor a guarantee of honesty? Your contempt for wealth is misplaced. Greed and insensitivity to the needs of others is the issue and poor people are just as likely to carry these flaws as rich people. I know that I didn’t hit your comment point by point. It was not my intent nor was it my intent to completely ignore them either. I am simply dictating this comment while driving so going back and forth between comments is not possible. Fifth, Correa is a budding dictator aligned with a failed Castro regime. If he continues on this path and if Ecuadorans permit him to do so, you will end up like Venezuela. Really, is that what you want?

  • “Typical leftist response. So full of envy and frustration that at the
    slightest bit of criticism, you resort to personal attacks because to
    stick to the facts would not serve your purpose to debase and discredit
    opposing views.”

    Typical gringo response. You can’t dispute the facts so now you try to change the discussion to “envy and frustration”. It’s pretty clear the only one frustrated here is you. That’s why you keep writing more and more nonsense. How many hours did you spend searching the English-language media for that BS only to have it struck down point by point here?

    You don’t actually know what you’re talking about, you don’t read the language, yet you still insist on repeating nonsense and calling it “fact”. You should probably look up the definition of criticism. You haven’t offered any so far. All you’ve done is parrot right-wing talking points that are demonstrably false, factually incorrect, i.e lies. That’s why you still haven’t named a single press outlet that Correa has shut down. That’s why you cannot explain why Ecuador’s libel laws are tyranny but the far stricter UK libel laws are just libel laws. You dodge and weave because you’ve got nothing.

    “The Inter-American Press Association criticized Correa by saying “the
    ongoing harassment of the Ecuador’s independent press through excessive
    and disproportionate legal suits by President Rafael Correa has put a
    chilling effect on Ecuador’s press freedom.””

    The Inter-American Press Association is a private consortium of right-wing press owners. Even their own reporters say they don’t represent journalism. But again, you don’t actually know anything about the press down here so you just do a hasty Google search and post unsubstantiated opinion pieces written by right-wing shills and US-funded NGOs. Let me know when you can name that press outlet that Correa has shut down. Should be dozens by now given all the dire warnings you quoted.

    “Because it is widely believed that the judiciary is controlled by Correa
    (another page from the Castro playbook) it is no surprise that Correa
    won his lawsuit. ”

    Care to site a single shred of evidence that Correa controls the judiciary? I’ve been hearing that talking point for years now yet nobody can cite a single instance where that’s true. By the way, Correa has had 5 lawsuits. He won 2. Now that’s control if I’ve ever seen it. I’m sure you were unaware because all your information comes from right-wing bloggers, not actual facts.

    “Human rights and press freedom groups around the world condemned the
    severity of the sentences imposed on the national opposition newspaper,
    El Universo.”

    The anonymous “human rights and press freedom groups”. Any of them not financed by the US State Department or right-wing billionaires? Any of them not on Chevron’s payroll? And what is an “opposition newspaper” in your book anyway? Is it news or all one big opinion piece? Does being in the opposition mean you can use the power of your airwaves and printing presses to make up blatant falsehoods about anyone you disagree with ideologically?

    “International pressure mounted against his blatantly anti-freedom of the
    press actions caused Correa to back-peddle and ultimately pardon the
    newspaper executives he was trying to send to prison for opposing him in
    the media.”

    Do you actually know anything about the case or are you just hastily browsing Wikipedia? First, the case was tried under the old libel law, the one that dated back to the 1970s. Second, the reason there was a prison sentence was because they refused to print a retraction, a retraction for something that was demonstrably false. They presented as fact the fantasy that the president was never actually sequestered in the National Police Hospital on September 30, 2010. They printed (over and over) that he could be charged with crimes against humanity for ordering the police to fire on a hospital full of civilians. They printed story after story claiming that the whole thing was staged, that he was really hiding in a school kilometers away planning is fake rescue by the army, that it was him that ordered the mutineers (who are on video calling for their men to kill the president) to fire on a the hospital, a hospital that had patient’s trapped inside, all as part of a well-orchestrated ruse to achieve . . . well they never actually indicated why he would have done such a thing, but that has nothing to do with journalism, does it? “Who Ordered Them to Fire” was the talking point repeated ad nauseum on every private press outlet. The fact that they have the officer on tape ordering them to fire, as well as dozens of police shooting down into the streets as the rescue motorcade went by, killing several police and soldiers in the process, didn’t stop the private media from repeating the fairy tale over and over in an attempt to rewrite history. Despite hours of video tape from dozens of sources (because you know, iPhones), we watched it live on television for that matter, the private media continued to accuse the president of attacking a hospital as part of an elaborate show.

    When someone, any citizen including the president, believes they have been libeled by the press, they can go to court and argue their case. If the court determines that the story was not based on any objective facts, quotes or reality for that matter, the newspaper/television news/radio/etc. is required to print/broadcast a retraction within 30 days in the same space with the same prominence as the libelous story. So if it was the front page headline, they have to print the retraction on the front page. If it’s the lead story on the news, the retraction has to be the lead story. It’s only if they fail to print a retraction that fines or even prison come into play. The sentence and fines were handed down by the court precisely because both the original reporters (who admitted they printed the story without a single source) and the newspaper refused to print a retraction. Feel free to explain how that infringes on press freedoms. You won’t because you can’t. You’ll change the subject instead.

    This particular story was literally pulled right out of Clever Jimenez’s rear and handed off to right-wing partisans who claim to be journalists, then the rest of the media repeated it day after day for 6 months under the guise of “El Universo claims”. Only the original reporters were liable because they were the ones required by law and journalistic integrity to provide evidence of what they were printing. The newspaper was liable because they refused to follow a court order and print a retraction.

    A press outlet isn’t the comments section of a web site. Journalists are required by law to have some evidence of what they put out in public. Otherwise, they have to use the “some believe” or “people say” gambit. Every journalism code of ethics on the planet agrees. It’s the reason your reporters have to say “allegedly” before a judge issues a ruling.

    Jimenez even went so far as to file charges of Crimes Against Humanity in the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, a case that was summarily rejected by the court because he didn’t have a single shred of evidence (not to mention all the evidence that he was completely making it up). In 2012 he even admitted that he based his entire accusation on “assumptions”, assumptions for which he tied the president up in court for 8 months. The court ruled it was a frivolous case and malicious prosecution (legislators have prosecutorial powers here), something that is against the law here and in most countries. He’s currently a fugitive from justice hiding out in an autonomous region in the Amazon under the protection of political allies who managed a whopping 7% in the last election. His co-conspirator was caught a month back trying to sneak back into Quito to go to a party. A month or two back, Jimenez made up another fantasy that was parroted dutifully by the corporate media. He claimed that the president took a secret trip on a private jet to New York smuggling drugs and that there were 3 Sky Jet planes that high government officials regularly used for that reason. The fact that the president was on live television surrounded by hundreds of people at a public function didn’t stop the corporate media from putting the story front and center for a week. The DEA impounded those 3 jets for weeks, costing Sky Jet hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenue, something for which they are now suing. The press is off the hook on this one because it turns out that Jimenez and his co-conspirators requested manifests for three other planes that were involved in drugs cases a decade ago and then doctored the documents to change the tail numbers. The press printed what they could reasonably believe to be true since there was documentation (despite the fact that it came from Clever Jimenez), so the liability falls on the people who doctored the documents. Granted, it was front page and leading headline news for about a week and not a single private news outlet has even mentioned that it turns out the documents were forged. That’s the kind of press we have here. They just move on to the next manufactured scandal, kind of like your comments.

    “It may seem like what Ecuador is doing is similar to the libel
    protections in the UK, but a closer look shows that criticism of the
    government, and especially its politicians, is widely assumed to enjoy
    far more latitude than criticism leveled at private citizens. ”

    Name a single individual or organization that has been charged
    for criticizing the government and especially its politicians. Name one. Who am I kidding? You’ll just move on to the next talking point. You keep talking about all this tyranny but whenever you’re asked for a single factual example, you do another Google search and copy/paste more demonstrably false nonsense. You’re a very intellectually dishonest person. Typical of right-wingers.

    In the meantime, dozens of private citizens have won their own cases against various media outlets under this new law. One ruling was handed down because a newspaper owner repeatedly libeled a private business in an attempt to destroy it because the owner’s son had a fight at school with his son. He didn’t get fined. He didn’t go to prison. He printed a retraction as the court ordered, just like in the El Universo case. The difference is the five families who control the private media here are no longer above the law. Your assertion that criticism leveled at private citizens enjoying less latitude is the exact opposite of reality. This is the part where you change the subject again.

    But don’t let any of these facts in any way give you pause. It’s clear you’re not the kind of person who bases his position on facts. You’re just a right-wing parrot. As Thomas Paine said,“to argue with a man who has renounced the use and
    authority of reason, and whose philosophy consists in holding humanity
    in contempt, is like administering medicine to the dead, or endeavoring
    to convert an atheist by scripture.”

  • Typical leftist response. So full of envy and frustration that at the slightest bit of criticism, you resort to personal attacks because to stick to the facts would not serve your purpose to debase and discredit opposing views. Your side will always be weak and unimaginative until you learn to think for yourself. Piss ant little dictators like Correa hate the fact that no matter how much they hate to do it, they still have to buy US sh*t to live well because folks who think like you can come up with your own crap. That said, I am not the only one who thinks that Correa is just another Castro puppet trying to make a name for himself. The Inter-American Press Association criticized Correa by saying “the ongoing harassment of the Ecuador’s independent press through excessive and disproportionate legal suits by President Rafael Correa has put a chilling effect on Ecuador’s press freedom.” They went on to say “Ecuador’s outdated criminal defamation provisions have been systematically used to punish critical journalists,” Because it is widely believed that the judiciary is controlled by Correa (another page from the Castro playbook) it is no surprise that Correa won his lawsuit. Human rights and press freedom groups around the world condemned the severity of the sentences
    imposed on the national opposition newspaper, El Universo. International pressure mounted against his blatantly anti-freedom of the press actions caused him to back-peddle and ultimately pardon the newspaper executives he was trying to send to prison for opposing him in the media. It may seem like what Ecuador is doing is similar to the libel protections in the UK, but a closer look shows that criticism of the government, and especially its politicians, is widely assumed to enjoy far more latitude than criticism leveled at private citizens. Correa seems to have been confused on that distinction. It would appear that so are you.

  • Wow, you came for 2 weeks and read the opposition newspapers. I yield to your expertise. Typical gringo. You come for two weeks on vacation and now you presume to preach to us who actually live and work here.

    BTW, how is there an opposition press if Correa has shut them down? Answer, he hasn’t shut anyone down. Prove me wrong. Name one press outlet he has shut down. I dare you.

    You clearly don’t know anything about this subject, though that rarely inhibits useful idiots like you from posting on the internet. I challenge you to list the differences between the UK libel laws and the Ecuadorian libel laws and explain to the rest of us why you continue to post your nonsense.

  • Yes, actually it was two weeks. Long enough to read the ‘Spanish’ criticisms of his regime. Correa’s attacks on the media have Castros’ fingerprints all over it. Your Fox analogy is pertinent. Obama faces down the Fox criticisms every day. He doesn’t need to pass laws to limit the press because he trusts in the ‘intelligence’ of the American people to read both sides and make their own decisions. By shutting negative press down, Correa feeds into their criticisms of his totalitarian intentions. Your leftist views are most apparent in your comment as to who should comment and who shouldn’t. Castro bootlickers always choose to limit public opinions that disagree with their views.

  • Have I been to Ecuador? Well, I live in Ecuador. Does that count? Have you been here? What, 2 weeks vacation maybe?

    He hasn’t limited freedom of the press. You obviously don’t read Spanish because you’re parroting the nonsense repeated ad nauseum by the English-language media. Everyone here knows those stories are sensationalist BS. The libel laws here are no different than those of Canada and are even more lenient than those of the UK, but to hear gringos say it the press has been muzzled. Funny thing is, you pick up any privately-owned newspaper or turn on the TV and all you hear is anti-Correa propaganda. Imagine Correa is Obama and the whole of the entire privately-owned media is Fox. That’s basically what we have here. I’m sure you were unaware.

    You shouldn’t comment in a public forum on subjects you clearly don’t know anything about.

  • Hahaha! Have you been to Ecuador? Given the changes Correa has made limiting the freedom of the press, a lesson taken from the Castro playbook, your complaints are misplaced. It is Correa who is headed backwards towards the 19th century.

  • I don’t understand the objections, but then I know nothing about politics and very little about world economics. So, please enlighten me. I live in rural Ecuador where competent, reliable medical care is like Forest Gump’s famous box of chocolates.

    A former medical professional from a “first world” nation has told me that medical training for doctors in Ecuador is comparable to Emergency Medical Technician training in the “first world”. This does not bode well for folks in the rurals suffering strokes and heart attacks.

    While it is true that excellent medical care is available in the big cities, for “funded folks”, what about folks living in the rurals, Ecuadorians as well as expats? I have read many accounts of both expats and Ecuadorians losing their lives, young as well as old, due to inept medical personnel. Diabetics have died because the nursing staff at public hospitals refused to test for blood glucose levels, and feed the patient accordingly. And then there is the 23-year-old Ecuadorian man, in Quito, who was incorrectly intubated during a routine sinus surgery and came out of the O.R. brain-dead. I know an expat who fell off a horse, and were it not for another expat at the scene, would likely be paralyzed for life; the locals were more concerned with moving her off the road than with her physical condition, NOT because they didn’t care but because they didn’t know the correct procedure. Don’t you think that someone operating an Equestrian facility, anywhere in the world, ought to know the rules of basic first aid?

    President Correa is dealing with a country that is growing in both population and economy by epic proportions; he recognizes that Ecuador needs help from outside its borders to bring medical care up to par. I have never agreed with any politician, 100% of the time, but in this case I applaud President Correa for asking for the help he and Ecuador need.

    Furthermore, it is my understanding that physicians in Cuba must master 3 specialties in order to be licensed. If my understanding is correct that is a heck of a lot more training than an EMT gets in the “first world”.

    Finally, $30,000/year is on par with what Ecuadorian physicians make working for the public hospitals. They live quite well in a country where the hourly minimum wage is under $3.00. HOW does this constitute slavery? How much money are physicians paid in Cuba?

    PLEASE enlighten me.

  • I didn’t realize Correa was beholden to rules written by 19th century philosophers. Maybe you should try joining the rest of us in the 21st century.

  • This is the new Caribbean slave trade. The Castro regime is exploiting the Cuban people, trading the indentured labour for cash. IS this what the revolution was fought for?

  • Don’t agreements like this violate the whole Marxist “iron law of wages” dictum? Correa is a socialist on paper but a capitalist in deed.

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