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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Perspectives

Well, you probably know by now who won the Presidential election.  The one for Ecuador, that is.   Yes, President Rafael Correa was re-elected.   He received about 60% of the vote.

Now, that may seem not all that impressive given that it's just 10% more than half.  In our particular case, we had 8 candidates to choose from.  The call for general elections happened on October 18, 2012.  The election campaigns were officially launched on January 4 OF THIS YEAR and ended on February 14th, 3 days before voting day.  No big conventions where hundreds of millions of dollars were wasted.  No year-long barrage of TV commercials manipulating slash distorting the facts and numbing our senses.  How refreshing is THAT??   Eight presidential candidates were registered.  Anyway, the nearest 'competitor' to PRC got only 23% of the vote and the remaining 17% were sprinkled amongst the other 6 candidates.

Of course, being President of the United States is waaaay different than President of Ecuador.  To give it some perspective, visualize....


  •  In terms of area, Ecuador with 98,985 square miles falls in-between Colorado with 103,729 square miles (the 8th largest state) and Wyoming with 97,105 square miles (the 9th largest state).
  • In terms of population, Ecuador with 14 million people falls in-between Florida and Illinois...respectively the 4th and 5th most populous states.
  • Startling fact:   the entire population of the state of Wyoming would fit in the city of Cuenca (approx 500,000).   Excuuuuuse me?  As I look across the city of Cuenca I'm seeing what could fit in the entire state of Wyoming??   They must not like having neighbors close by in Wyoming!!  
If Ecuador were your home instead of The United States you would:
  • use 91.44% less electricity
  • consume 79.45% less oil
  • spend 94.36% less money on health care
  • have 15.05% more chance at being employed
  • live where the unemployment rate is less than 5%
All these little factoids I got from the internets (GW Bush).

Of course, I could go on and on, but I won't.

Yes I will:
  • Pay $1.48 a gallon for Regular gas, $2.10 for Premium
  • Not get junk mail
  • Not have tornadoes, hurricanes, blizzards
  • Not give a rip about the Kardashians
  • Not be at war(s) all the time
  • Not pay $150 a MONTH in property taxes to support schools that you've never had a child use, but families who do have children that attend the schools but have a lesser-valued house pay LESS taxes for the school, though they utilize it MORE.
  • Not fear for your life if you go to a movie theater, sit in a coffee shop, go to McDonalds, let someone go from their job, attend a school/college, or drive down the freeway and accidentally cut someone off. 
  • Take responsibility for your OWN actions and decisions versus holding everyone else accountable.
  • Not worry about your job being out-sourced.
  • Own 1 car per 5 people in EC, versus 1 car per 1.25 people in the US.
  • Experience hard-working people versus hardly-working people.
  • Get a $4 haircut (that takes a half hour) versus $40.
  • Live on cash instead of credit, credit, credit
  • Eat fresh home-cooked meals versus pre-made frozen meals (ie; Lean Cuisine) and/or fast-food.
  • Ride the bus for .25 cents.
  • Pay a dollar for 2 hours of parking.
  • Get food served by people NOT wearing surgical masks over their head, eyebrows, moustache, and goatee.  WHAT??!!   Shouldn't they be covering they eyelashes, arms, and sideburns, too?  What about their ear hair?  
I digress.

Ok, I'll stop there.  Don't want this to be a RANT!!!  Noooooo!!!

Lastly, the words of PRC when he won 4 more years in office:

"In this revolution the citizens are in charge, not capital,"

"We are only here to serve you. Nothing for us; everything for you,"

Granted, them is only words, but when was the last time we heard such sentiment from the politicians of the country we came from?  They wouldn't have the guts.

Dano

6 comments:

  1. Yes, we Wyomingites like our space! In fact, when I look past my next door neighbor's back yard, there's a clear and empty path from this corner of Laramie all the way to Casper. :-) I've also come to believe there are more antelope than people in Wyoming but haven't checked the data on that. Love, your sister Chris

    ReplyDelete
  2. Dano,
    Again, I enjoy reading you perspectives. You'll never believe this in a million years, but we back here in the states are facing.... another fiscal cliff! Surprised? I'm sure you are. This time it's called a " Sequester " Snappy phrase that means... "You're Screwed " But wait.... do you think at the very last minute some sort of agreement will be reached, yet again to kick THAT can down the road? I'll keep you posted.
    If you get an opportunity, there is a very good article on the fantastic health care system we have here back in The Good Ol' U. S.of A. in the current Time issue.
    See You Soon,
    Neil

    ReplyDelete
  3. First time seeing your blog, and want to say that I thoroughly enjoyed it--only two points I'd disagree with! Thank you.

    Bill Herbert
    Portland, OR

    ReplyDelete
  4. Dano,

    Ecuador is a wonderful and hospitable country and I love living here, but your impressions are totally skewed and
    you sound thoroughly brainwashed. It really would be best if you stayed away from a career of a political correspondent, who know neither Spanish, nor what is going on in Ecuador.

    Your tales about houses, markets, travels, all are fine and both entertaining and useful. BUT THIS??? :(

    ReplyDelete
  5. The blog entry is titled Perspectives, which by definition means that it is subjective. I may not totally agree with Dano and I am not sure if his statistics are true but I find his perspective on life as an expat in Cuenca highly interesting. A blog about living in Ecuador should include all experiences from experiencing the culture, the markets, the houses, and yes even the differences in politics.
    Btw- I am a firm believer in hair nets for food service workers!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Dano,

    You speak the truth -- unfortunately many gringos are allergic. Congratulations on your escape from Nightmerica.

    ReplyDelete

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Cuenca, Azuay, Ecuador
This is all about my transition from an American lifestyle and culture to my newest adventure, life in Cuenca and greater Ecuador. I'll be recapping some of my day-to-day experiences (and mishaps) to highlight what it's like to live here.

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