Globo and PT

Carlos Zilio, DÚVIDA DILACERANTE, 1971, felt-tip pen on paper, 50x35
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By VALERIO ARCARY*

Lula's interdiction continues to be a taboo topic for the Globo group, in fact, for the ruling class

1. The article published by former editor-in-chief of O Globo Ascânio Seleme on Saturday (11/07) “It's time to forgive the PT” has been interpreted as an expression of the company's opinion. The Globo group signals to the ruling class that it is necessary to recognize that the PT and the left, because they have social strength and political-electoral capacity, influencing a third of society, must be accepted as necessary, or even indispensable, political subjects of opposition to the Bolsonaro government.

Although the direct reference of the article is about the PT, because the party maintains a majority position on the left, it seems evident, due to the reasons invoked, that it is a question of a change of orientation that affects the entire Brazilian left, therefore, also the PSol. This is not a complete surprise, because for the past two months, Jornal Nacional has invited PT leaders and even PSol leadership in the Chamber of Deputies, Fernanda Melchionna.

This is an important transformation. It is impossible to understand the history of the last five years without studying the role of Grupo Globo during the construction of support for Operation LavaJato and support for the impeachment of Dilma Rousseff. Although it distanced itself from the Temer government after the JBS scandal, the Globo group engaged in the campaign of denunciations that culminated in Lula's conviction and imprisonment and, therefore, facilitated the path for Bolsonaro's rise until the 2018 elections, as spokesperson for the extreme right, supporting Paulo Guedes and his proposals during the campaign. This change confirms a division within the Brazilian bourgeoisie.

2. The Globo group reaffirms that the Bolsonaro government is a threat to the New Republic regime. The article confirms a reassessment of the position before the Bolsonaro government, after the impact of the pandemic, but goes further. He claims that the PT and the left are not, at this moment, even a symmetrical danger to Bolsonarism, the “theory” of the two extremisms, the two threats, the two risks. This repositioning deserves to be seriously analyzed.

This is not just a self-defense attitude in the face of direct threats to its place as the main economic group in the sphere of social communication. Of course, it is also a matter of relocation in self-defense. They are not unaware that their fate as a corporation is in jeopardy. The Bolsonaro government has already threatened the non-renewal of the concession, redistributed official advertising funds, favored competing communication groups and, recently, threatened the monopoly of transmissions of the Brazilian championship, an important source of funding for the “most precious jewel”, the television network.

But it would be short-sighted not to consider that the Globo group plays an important role in shaping the political position of the ruling class and the middle classes. Since mid-March, he has been taking a critical position against the Bolsonaro government: (a) he condemned anti-scientific denialism in the face of the pandemic; (b) pointed out the danger of Fascist Acts; (c) denounced the speeches in defense of the self-coup by the Bolsonarist wing; (d) supported the initiatives of the STF to investigate the fakenews network financed from the Palácio do Planalto; (e) supported Maia in the presidency of Congress when expanding emergency aid; (f) accused Bolsonaro of abuse of power when intervening in the Federal Police; (g) and supported Sergio Moro and opposition governors, such as Dória.

3. Grupo Globo reveals that it is aware that underestimating the social and political weight of the Brazilian left would be an irreparable mistake. The dimension of the national crisis generated by the pandemic and the economic recession opens up the possibility of very massive mass mobilizations in a few months. The holding of municipal elections may not be enough to channel social unrest. The repositioning of the Globo group is also a warning to the ruling class that the protagonism of the left in the streets will be inevitable. More importantly, that social malaise is growing and could spill over when the conditions of social confinement conditioned by the height of the pandemic are overcome. There is a lot of uncertainty on the horizon. Actions to partially contain Bolsonarism's fascist impulses after Queiroz's arrest brought relative relief, but their effects are transitory.

4. Globo continues to bet on Bolsonaro staying until the end of his term, as long as the pressure from the STF and Congress is enough to contain the neo-fascist wing. This is the position that prevails, mostly, in the Brazilian bourgeoisie. A second impeachment, at such a short interval, is still considered a greater evil than Bolsonaro's stay. In particular, because there is an immense unity around Paulo Guedes' projects, including privatizations.

But the Globo group signals a position in an electoral opposition field for 2022 and, above all, warns that a centrist candidacy can only win in the second round if it manages to drag the left-wing votes, which imposes a new attitude towards the parts of the parties of leftists who accepted the concertation through the embryo of the Frente Ampla articulated by the Juntos movement, in defense of law, order and the market, and by the Rights Now, in defense of democracy, but without denouncing the coup provocations and, much less demanding, the end of the Bolsonaro government.

5. No less important, Lula's interdiction continues to be a taboo topic for the Globo group, indeed, for the ruling class. Lula has to remain cursed, condemned, execrated. The PT and a concerted left that accepts an auxiliary position in the opposition must be accepted. It is not, evidently, because Lula is a radical, because even the stones of the Botanical Garden know that he never was. But for everything that Lula symbolizes in the consciousness of millions, and that can still be set ablaze at the time of the head-on fight against Bolsonaro.

It seems unavoidable that Lula's next trial at the STF, when the annulment of the convictions constructed in the context of the LavaJato operation by Judge Sergio Moro will be called into question, will turn into a central and decisive political dispute.

*Valerio Arcary is a retired professor at IFSP. Author, among other books, of Revolution meets history (Shaman).

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