the protracted war

Image: C. Cagnin
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By JULIAN RODRIGUES*

There will be no impeachment and Bolsonaro will not melt: it's time to wear down the government more and more; continuing with the struggle in the streets, networks and ballot boxes.

Yes, it is a delight to see the Bolsonaro government taking a “heat” with the revelations of corruption in the Ministry of Health. Yes, we have to cheer up and increase the pressure and wear and tear on the government, both in the institutional field and on the streets. It is absolutely right that we did more of this agitation with the “super request” of impeachment and anticipated the street demonstrations to July 3rd.

That said, down to earth. Rigor in the analysis. The acceleration of the conjuncture does NOT generate any qualitative or immediate change in the situation. In short: there will be no impeachment, Bolsonaro will not fall – the struggle remains tough and medium-term.

First: no government with 25% support falls. Collor had 9% and Dilma 8% support when they were stopped. Secondly: the bourgeoisie remains satisfied – every ultra-liberal market agenda runs wild. They have just approved the privatization of Eletrobrás. They advance in a radical administrative reform (dismantling of the State). You post offices are in line to be sold. They are going to approve a bill revoking the indigenous rights won in 1988. Why? catzo Would they overthrow Bolsonaro now?

Bolsonaro's relative weakening is useful for the upper floor. The liberal right may demand more agility in the privatist agenda. The progressive neoliberals (Globo, for example) acquire better conditions to soften the fascist aspects of the government (democratic freedoms, environment).

Bolsonaro is going through his worst moment. But he still has an extreme right-wing, radicalized and mobilized base. He continues with hegemony on social networks. The economy will “go downhill” – there is some growth going on. The epidemic, at the end of the year, post-vaccination, will also have less weight in the conjuncture. In addition, Bolsonaro and Guedes have already announced that they will do “kindness” in the economic field and social policies, starting with a boosted Bolsa Família.

It would be a mistake to focus only on the corruption agenda (which, incidentally, has historically always been used by the right against us). The mobilizations and actions in Congress by the out Bolsonaro they cannot leave aside the demand for emergency aid of R$600, to accelerate vaccines, to generate jobs – much less the resistance to privatizations and the withdrawal of rights. Even worse would be to change the denunciation of Bolsonarist denialism, of accountability for the spread of Covid, to a simplistic focus on the subject of bribes. It's important to show Bolsonaro's hypocrisy, which is super-honest. But without abandoning the centrality of programmatic criticism and the struggle for the “people's agenda” (food on the plate).

In 2022, there will be no competitive neoliberal candidacy (traditional right) – those sectors that the media call the “center”. As much as one tries to emulate a “third way”, it is clear that there is no space. Huck and Moro left the game. The PSDB is all fragmented (Tasso, Doria, Leite?) and without votes. The DEM, under the leadership of ACM Neto, is very close to Bolsonarism.

Ciro Gomes operates a repositioning. He wants to be the candidate of the liberal right, but also inherit anti-PT votes and light Bolsonarists. At the same time, he maintains the image of a candidate with a neo-developmentalist program – something strictly incompatible with becoming the name of the liberal “center”. Ciro radicalizes the attacks on the PT and Lula. He flirts with the evangelical electorate (with religious videos), offers himself to repentant Bolsonaristas and also to the markets. So far he's just been dehydrated. Research shows that he takes a beating from Lula even in Ceará, where he also loses to Bolsonaro. At the current pace, he will end up with less than 5% (a new Marina).

The Lula x Bolsonaro polarization grows. 2022 will not be a repeat of 2002. The country is much more devastated – Bolsonarist neo-fascism is not the same as FHC's neoliberalism. The 2022 electoral campaign brings a scenario similar to that of 1989 – the departure of an exceptional regime, the transition to democracy

Bolsonarism is based on a very strong alliance. More than just guardianship, the military structure this government. The militias strengthen. The police are totally fascistized. Radical neoliberalism, religious fundamentalism, organized crime, financial market, imperialism, agribusiness, physiological “hub”, Armed Forces, security forces, moralistic-resentful middle classes, right-wing extremists of all stripes (a historic bloc).

Defeating Bolsonarism involves broad social mobilizations and a political-cultural-ideological war. Go through the networks. And it goes through the Lula campaign. Bolsonaro will not “let go of the bone” easily. There will be a lot, a lot of fighting.

The challenges remain the same as ever. There's no shortcut. Not magic. No precipitation and no illusions with superstructural movements. Let's continue in the medium-term war against not only Bolsonaro, but above all, against neo-fascism and against neoliberalism. For a third Lula government: with a popular-democratic program, of structural reforms and reconstruction of Brazil.

* Julian Rodrigues is a professor and journalist, LGBTI and human rights activist.

 

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