the institutionalized lie



If life and the economy are opposed to the government, the treatment based on lies is the same for both

Tampered resumes, unrealistic promises, empty ads, anti-ghosting policies, and even a fake dog. From the most urgent and serious issues to the most trivial and simple, the government discards the truth and reinforces the choice of lies as an institutional parameter. The recent failed adoption of a dog by the first lady serves as an allegory for the verification and exposition of the values ​​practiced.

At least since the inauguration ceremony, the first lady has played the role of humanizing the figure of the President, an old technique adopted by several politicians. Keeping all due proportions and only for functional comparison, we can cite as an example Ruth Cardoso, Bia Doria, Adriana Anselmo, Marcela Temer, Lu Alckmin. Given the head of the Executive's tempestuous personality and lack of character, Michelle's public image was gradually associated with social works and the defense of the disabled – even if the government does not show special appreciation for such guidelines. Thus, the good deed with an abandoned animal had nothing to do with charity.

As soon as it was done, the adoption was instrumentalized as a positive agenda in a public relations attempt to ease the train of disasters that advances without brake on the Bolsonarist track. The dog, renamed Augusto (was it an inside joke in reference to other government mascots?) gained a profile on the social network with relaxed photos and videos with Michelle and family. Hard to resist, isn't it? As old a policy as using the post of first lady for reputational purposes is resorting to producing content with domestic animals, magnets of empathy and engagement. After disclosure, the true owner claimed the dog and a ready ceremony was prepared. That's pretty simple, if the episode didn't carry too many symbols of irony to go unpunished.

The family adopted a purebred white dog, whose value is estimated at between R$2 and R$3, while a black and brown mongrel has been wandering around the entrance to the Alvorada Palace for weeks. The gates of power also keep other blacks and Parthians out: in a people with a black majority (56%), there is not a black person in the top echelon of the Executive. Only 24,4% of federal deputies and 28,9% of state deputies elected in 2018 are black, as well as just over 15% of magistrates, according to data from the National Council of Justice (2013)[I]. Blacks and browns fight for survival as mutts, since they are 75% of the 13 million Brazilians in extreme poverty[ii]. Coincidentally, the race maremano shepherd it is ideal for taking care of livestock, as the fervent Bolsonarists are called, and “has a natural ability to help farmers, breeders and other professionals in the rural area, generating savings for the property in the replacement of labor”[iii]. The tailored combo for agribusiness. And finally, as admitted, it was known that the dog belonged to someone, but even so, efforts were not made to find the person responsible, but rather to capitalize on the supposed good deed, not to mention the amount of misappropriation, typical characteristic of a social stratum that considers itself above laws and rules, as has been seen recently[iv].

It will probably not be the last time that the government will be exposed thanks to, let's say, lack of connection with the truth, also because other examples preceded it. Carlos Decotelli did not even manage to be appointed Minister of Education, as the qualifications he boasted turned out to be false. He was not a doctor, much less a post-doctor, and he was even accused of plagiarism in his final master's thesis. His predecessors, Ricardo Vélez and Abraham Weintraub did not escape the rule. Damares Alves presented herself as a Master in Education, Constitutional Law and Family Law, without ever having had such titles. In his defense, he said that “Unlike the secular teacher, who needs to go to a university to do a master’s degree, in Christian churches, anyone who is dedicated to biblical teaching is called a teacher.”[v] Ricardo Salles also presented non-existent qualification. He blamed the advisory for the error that awarded him a master's degree in Public Law at Yale University, in the United States. Perhaps, the advisors took the opportunity to throw the diploma away, just as the minister saw in the pandemic a chance to simplify environmental rules and regulations.

The irrelevance with which the government treated the adulteration of the training of its members reveals disdain for the truth, but also for formal education, already manifested in the obscurantism that denies the seriousness of the pandemic, the increase in deforestation, unemployment, hunger. The priority for Health and Education never existed. Without the appointment of Decotelli, the ministry has been without a holder for days, in the year in which the main form of funding for basic education ends. In the same way, Health is commanded by an interim in the face of the biggest health crisis in Brazilian history, however, in 100 days of the pandemic in Brazil, about two thirds of the budget resources were not even committed (purchases of inputs were not made nor transfers to states and municipalities), points out the June balance of the National Health Council. The responsible economist's assessment is that either there is a lack of planning for emergency actions or an austerity policy has delayed the use of resources, at the expense of lives[vi]. It is worth remembering that the lie was, in fact, institutionalized when trying to change the official pandemic statistics.

If life and the economy are opposed to the government, the treatment based on lies is the same for both. Emergency aid, improved with effort by Congress, is still under review for 10 million Brazilians. The inability to make the benefit reach those who are socially fragile sets the tone of disapproval by the population. On the other hand, more than 70 military personnel received aid unduly, as if it were not enough to be part of the most privileged category in the social security reform and awarded with trinkets.

Mainly responsible for job creation in the country, micro and small companies (those that still resist) did not see the credit offered grudgingly by the government, which does not want to lose money “saving small companies”, as Paulo Guedes said[vii]. Not even 20% of the credit intended for financing programs was disbursed[viii]. In the last 12 months, 93,4% of the bankruptcy requests and 94,2% of the requests for judicial recovery were from small companies, which also accounted for most of the bankruptcies decreed (95,8%) and deferred judicial recoveries (94,3 .XNUMX%)[ix]. It is a line that seeks social chaos. Sources of formal jobs are being annihilated by increasing informality in a country where, for the first time, less than half of people of working age are employed[X].

Regina Duarte's nomination for Culture gave the false impression to a few optimists that the actress could find a way to help a sector almost entirely paralyzed by the pandemic. His vexatious passage left absolutely nothing of relevance to the artistic class and will be remembered with embarrassment. Her transfer to the Cinemateca de São Paulo was also false. The promised position did not exist and the government's intention is precisely to close it. She was followed by another secretary who inspires nothing good in the category.

The lie is ingrained in the pores of the government. Bolsonaro degraded the first commitment to truth before voters to the point that, now, the announcement of his contamination is seen with extreme suspicion, not gratuitously, but due to the habit of demoralizing the presidential word by the President himself. Denialists did an exercise in humility once infected, but Bolsonaro tramples on it by saying that he improved almost immediately after taking chloroquine, whose efficiency was discarded by researchers. It is a criminal disservice that reflects the pressure on health professionals for treatments without scientific proof[xi]. The daydream earned the Army an 18-year supply of the medicine! The President vetoed the obligation to wear masks in schools, public offices, prisons, shops, industries with the aim of transferring the dislike of the inevitable restrictive measures to governors and mayors and, thus, reinforcing the lie that the Brazilian tragedy is not his responsibility, but the test came back positive for lying.

Sooner or later, the truth prevails, they say. For now, the lie persists at the cost of at least 100 deaths, considering the underreporting that will become known in the future; of millions of unemployed and informal workers abandoned to precarious conditions; of millions of people infected by a disease whose consequences are unknown; of institutional degradation and moral corruption of powers; of environmental devastation and indigenous extermination; of popular domination by financial interests.

Defending the rebuttal in 2022 means extending the trail of social devastation of a sick country with no prospect of recovery. The damages are very serious to be minimized due to procedural issues or put on the bench waiting for the appropriate moment. Hard to believe that the truth needs to destroy Brazil to triumph.

*Iury Tavares Master in Political Science and International Relations from Universidade Nova de Lisboa.





[iv] I am referring, of course, to the episodes known for the phrases “Not a citizen, civil engineer, better than you.”, “You may be a macho on the periphery, but here you are a piece of shit. This is Alphaville, bro.” and “”My father is a prosecutor, you are going to lose this little job of yours.”.








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