Um, no. Just a bunch of oligarchic whiners getting their knicks in a twist again. This time in Quito and Guayaquil.
Ecuador’s government has seized two private TV stations in a long-running dispute over debts.
Backed by police, officials raided the TV channels in Quito and Guayaquil, and another 193 companies in the same business group were also seized.
The raids were carried out by officials from the state’s Deposit Guarantee Agency (AGD), which seeks to recover funds from banks that closed or went bankrupt in a financial crisis in the late 1990s.
The companies taken over on Tuesday form part of Grupo Isaias, whose owners are related to two bankers, Roberto and William Isaias.
The brothers ran the now closed Filanbanco that is being investigated for alleged embezzlement of state money put at some $661m (£335m).
The Ecuadorean government is seeking their extradition from the US.
All right. Now we can see that this is NOT a free-speech issue at all, but rather all about an end to impunity for wealthy embezzlers. And what better way to hit ’em where it hurts than to yank their lucrative access to the public airwaves?
But of course, being oligarchs, they whine…not because their voices are suddenly being muted, but because now they’ll have a bit less to spend on cocaine, hookers and single-malt Scotch. And because they just might end up facing justice.