Login

Register

Become a member of The Cuenca Dispatch and access exclusive weekly reports on Ecuador's economy, politics, crime and more that you will not find published anywhere else on the web.

Ecuador's Original English Language Newspaper

Stop making demands

Published on September 21, 2021

If you find this article informative…

Members receive weekly reports on Ecuador’s economics, politics, crime and more.

Start your subscription today for just $1 for the first month.

(Regular subscription options $4.99/month or $42/year/)

Click here to subscribe.

Everywhere you look in Ecuador’s newspapers, you see President Lasso’s name: he’s going to CELEC, he’s speaking at the UN, he is being hailed for stopping Covid-19 in Ecuador, he has a meeting set up with Conaie, he is a busy, busy guy.

And none of these things even address the stuff he (or his Ministers) is working on to get the finances of the country in order.

Honesty, all these things he is doing cause two opposing feelings in me: pride and fear.

I’m proud to be living in a country where the President seems to be doing all that he can to get the country out of debt, to free it of corruption, to make it healthy and safe. And I fear what will happen if he can’t fix all the things he is trying to address.

Because people expect so much. They put all their problems on one person and then get angry when that person can’t fix everything that they themselves caused.

Look at Ecuador’s finances for example. To put it bluntly, then are a freaking mess. The external debt the country holds has been steadily growing for the last 10 years. In general, Ecuadorian’s complain about it, but at the same time they don’t stop asking for more from the government (and Ecuador is not the exception here, most countries do the same).

Case in point, Conaie. Conaie is demanding that the government reinstate the fuel subsidies, release people of their debts, release those arrested for the violent protests that happened in 2019 and cut all relationships with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). They are doing this while threatening to cause more violent protests!  Seriously? That’s their solution to the country’s debt problems?

The whole thing is ridiculous. Conaie says they’re okay with other people paying higher prices for fuel, but not the indigenous. They say the indigenous deserve lower prices and to be forgiven if they committed a crime because they didn’t get their demands met in 2019. And if they don’t get them, they will commit crimes again. What?

First, let me say that I don’t think it’s the “indigenous” who are demanding these things. It’s people who put themselves in power (remember, the current leader of Conaie was supposed to be a woman) who are demanding these things. Demanding that the President meet them on a date they pick. Demanding that people arrested for actual crimes be released because they are indigenous. Demanding that debts be forgiven. Demanding that the country give the IMF back the money that was used to refinance the high-interest debts that their hero Correa made (yeah, let’s not forget who borrowed all that money from China)

I’ll bet you that the average indigenous person doesn’t give a hoot about most of what Conaie is demanding. They care that fuel prices have gone up. Not so much because they drive (most don’t), but because of the trickle-down effect that it has on increasing other prices, like public transportation and non-perishable goods. These are legitimate concerns and are really what should be getting addressed.

But making “DEMANDS” and threats is not the way for the country or its people to move forward. Asking for a meeting with a President, coming with solutions to problems, and listening to the problems that the country is dealing with, are the ways to move forward.

Look, Lasso is trying to do a LOT. And he certainly has more problems to deal with than the price of gas. So, what he needs from all of the country’s people(s) is a chance to do what is best for the country.

He doesn’t need groups trying to claim to be more important or more mistreated than other groups. He doesn’t need threats. He doesn’t need an Assembly that has already claimed that they will not work with him. He doesn’t need demands.

He doesn’t need everyone putting their problems on only his shoulders

He needs solutions. He needs to be given a chance to fix as many problems as possible. He needs Ecuadorians to understand that it’s time to work on things as a nation, and not as separate groups.

Ecuador has so much opportunity to improve its situation. It has a leader who is trying to do that exact thing. He is not trying to make the rich, richer. He is not trying to make the poor, poorer. He is not trying to make the debt, deeper.

He is trying to turn the corner and make this a real democracy that works for the people.

He needs a chance to do that.

I’m just sayin.’

8 Comments

  1. So agree.

    Reply
  2. True what you say but remember that early on Lasso told the CONAIE that he would not be solving the problems of their own making.

    And true again that the idiotic demands from CONAIE are coming from their political leaders and as usual, have little to do with the basic problem.

    The real need is to realize that commodity prices have been falling for a decade and all agricultores (mostly indigenous) are being driven into poverty by falling gains from sales and increasing costs and labor. That’s the problem
    the country needs to address. It’s a problem here and everywhere driven by
    USA’s Wall Street and others.

    We have a minimum average living cost. That is a joke for most indigenous and other agricultores. Until we realize that the health of economies begins
    at the bottom with the basic remuneration for work being sufficient to survive, governments will continue to support extreme poverty, malnutriton, and the like because the BASIC principals for how successful economies can work are ignored.

    Reply
  3. Very well said! Let’s help the President do his job.

    Reply
  4. I agree totally with your thoughts on these matters. The president needs our support to get the country back on it feet and working properly.

    Reply
  5. I could not agree more with virtually every point made in this article.

    Reply
  6. Same as in the U.S. so many demanding that the government or someone else gives them instead of helping themselves.

    Reply
  7. Amen, Amen, Amen, Jim. Thanks you are unafraid yo say it the truth, regardless of whether it is uncomfortable or not. I salute you, Sir.

    Reply
  8. This seems to be a perfectly logical, well thought out opinion. Thank you.

    When reading other articles…..like about medicine shortages…I wondered if the public hospital pharmacist are still selling their meds on the black market, telling the patient “Sorry, we’re out!” Or if they were STILL having trouble knowing what the inventory of meds are, and in what warehouse, and how many warehouses are WHERE? (Bucaram?)

    For years, It seems we’ve identified problems, but never hear what happened to solve them! The speed with which Ecuadoreans switch presidents….changing administrations, etc. certainly doesn’t help to give any President time to solve problems, and clear out corruption!

    Correa’s tenure was a recent exception, but now we find that his lengthy time wasn’t always spent solving the country’s problems, but in keeping his buddy’s wealthy. Where ARE the 20 business men, who were indicted with Correa?

    I hope President Lasso does have a chance to break this traditional dead lock, and can “turn the corner” before he gets replaced….again!!

    Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Share This
%d bloggers like this: