As the old adage “monkey see, monkey do” suggests, aping Venezuela’s simian leader has been difficult to resist for Ecuadorian President, Rafael Correa. So difficult, in fact, that even a PhD in Economics from the University of Illinois could not curtail his innate desire to mimic the neighborhood despot.
Perhaps it is the millions of dollars that chavez has funneled into Correa’s political campaigns and personal bank accounts. Or, perhaps, like chavez, Correa just wants to be the king of his own personal jungle. Whatever may be the underlying motivation, Correa has decided to not just duplicate the same policies enacted by his friend, but to also duplicate the same mistakes.
Take the case of the 200 companies the government confiscated two weeks ago, allegedly because of ties to a decade-old banking scandal. However, in the case of at least two of the companies that were seized, the motivation appears to be political rather than judicial. TV stations Gamavisión and TC Televisión – two of the most popular, but independent, TV stations in Ecuador, were confiscated because their owner supposedly had ties to the Isaias Group. The owners of the two stations say they have no formal ties to the two bankers who were indicted in the banking scandal.
While Correa claims the take-over is not aimed at curtailing freedom of expression in Ecuador, the government’s representative immediately changed the editorial line of the two stations. And the government’s version isn’t exactly bolstered by the fact that Radio Sucre, a radio station critical of Correa, also was taken over on the same day – allegedly for using a frequency it had not been allotted – a claim the radio station’s owners denied.
So while the citizens of Venezuela and Bolivia have rejected the path to a tyrannical dictatorship that chavez euphemistically refers to as “21st Century Socialism,” Correa has decided to give these failed tactics another try. Maybe he believes the Ecuadorian people are not as bright, or, maybe, he is the one that is not that bright.
You can read about monkey-boy’s protégé repeating the same mistakes HERE.