Ecuador’s notoriously thin-skinned president took his hypersensitivity to the next level last week when he abruptly ordered his motorcade to halt in the middle of the street to berate a teenager for mocking him from the sidewalk.
President Rafael Correa stopped his motorcade in downtown Quito on May 1 after spotting a 17-year-old teen flipping him the bird from the sidewalk.
Correa gets pissed and goes after a kid.
Bravely surrounded by his bodyguards, Ecuador’s most powerful man stepped from his bullet proof vehicle and aggressively huffed and puffed towards the teenager to confront him and his mother.
The startled teenager, Luis Carrera, says President Correa poked him repeatedly in the chest and scolded him on the sidewalk. He said the president was so angry that tears were forming in his eyes.
“He screamed ‘Show some respect, little kid! I am your president, you rude scoundrel!’” Carrera said.Team Correa denied the part about poking the kid in the chest. Oh, well, that makes everything much more presidential, right?
Correa a couple months ago had a twitter snit about a comedian, John Oliver, who made fun of him on HBO for his hypersensitivity (thus, of course, proving Oliver right). Here's a link to the YouTube – it's really, really funny.
Correa also used his weekly TV show to attack a private citizen who had set up a Facebook page that had mocked him, as recounted here in The New York Times Magazine.
These examples are ludicrous, of course, and rather amusing, but it gets more serious when Correa sues newspapers for millions of dollars for criticizing him, in order to shut down dissent in the country.
This doesn't bode well for Ecuador's future.