Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa responded to recession in his country with increased spending on education, health care and infrastructure, and the economy is rebounding fantastically.
Correa holds a Ph.D. in economics. Since he was elected in 2006, he has become loved by the country’s poor and working class and hated by many of its elites. His policies have dramatically diminished poverty, unemployment and inequality and grown Ecuador’s economy at a rate two to three times that of the United States. This success has earned him some unfair criticism from the press, which notably includes an article in The Economist magazine this month.
But William Black, a University of Missouri-Kansas City economist and former financial regulator, sees reasons to praise the country. “The consequences for the lives of everyday Ecuadoreans are dramatically improved,” he said in a recent interview on The Real News Network. “The chances that your kid is going to school is way up. The chances that when you’re sick you get health care are way up. The chances if you’re one of the indigenous people that used to be forgotten, that you get services, is way up.”