El Comercio, a right wing newspaper in Ecuador, published a front page interview with presidential candidate Guillermo Lasso that headlined his bogus anti-extractivist posturing.
How I do I know that Lasso – a banker and former “superminister” in the government of Jamil Mahuad that in 1998 signed off on Chevron’s destruction in Ecuador’s Amazon – isn’t credible? Well, besides his past, in the interview he refuses to commit to stop oil extraction in Yasuni National Park.
Lasso also promised to “reclaim” “institutional independence” in Ecuador. Chevron fought for years (before Rafael Correa was first elected in 2006) to convince U.S. courts that Ecuador’s judiciary was fair and independent. Who better than Chevron to assess the integrity of any country’s judiciary? That tells you all you need to know about the kind of “institutional independence” Ecuador had before Correa’s ten years in office.
Anyway, I am sure Lasso is sincere when he tells the interviewer that, if he wins, he wants President Rafael Correa (who is not running for another term) to stay in Ecuador:
“He must face in the courts all the judicial processes that will necessarily be opened to audit these last 10 years of Government.”
It is the kind of remark that provokes silence and yawns from the international media and US-based “human rights groups” provided that left wing politicians are the targets. In Brazil and Argentina, members of the formerly “good left” have been persecuted with a wink and nod from Washington and well funded NGOs.
The concept of a “good left” was invented in the mid 2000s because Washington knew it would be stupid to openly assail all Latin America’s progressive governments at once. But now, with the right well into a comeback in the region, it should be clear that as far as the U.S. government concerned (and also its allies among rich western governments, the mass media and big NGOs) the only “good left” is an overthrown, persecuted and, if possible, imprisoned left.