Two years of misgovernment – ​​democratic farce and disguise of legality

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By LEONARDO BOFF*

Everything that was created in the Lula-Dilma governments that had a popular flavor or the insertion of the impoverished in society was literally dismantled in a criminal way.

It is a fact confessed by the former Supreme Chief of the Armed Forces (FFAA), General Eduardo Villas Boâs, that the High Command in 2018 dealt a blow to Brazilian democracy, injuring item XILV of article 5 of the Constitution, which says, such a fact: “it constitutes a crime non-bailable and imprescriptible the action of armed groups, civil or military, against the constitutional order and the Democratic State”. The idea was, putting pressure on the STF to keep its distance, to use judge Sérgio Moro (excellent in applying the lawfare) to exclude Lula from the presidential election, condemning him for any crime, in this case, “for an undetermined crime” and putting him in prison where he stayed for more than 500 days. This would pave the way for the election of a former captain compulsorily retired for bad behavior, Jair M. Bolsonaro. What actually happened.

We know the biblical “tribulation desolation” that came upon our country with the president-elect. He militarily occupied the State with 11 soldiers in different command or administration roles. He did not know how to keep the dignity that the highest office in the nation demands and he gave himself up to defamations, direct lies, fake news, to the shameful use of profanity with sovereign contempt of the press. A murderous mind, he preferred to encourage the purchase of more weapons by civilians than to draw up a plan to confront Covid-19, which has already claimed more than 220 victims and is approaching 10 million infected people. In the global assessment, Brazil ranked last in health policies against Covid-19 and in the application of vaccination to the population.

Our democracy, which historically has always been of low intensity, now, under Bolsonaro and his cronies, has been torn apart, not even reaching very low intensity. It has become a farce and its main institutions a disguise of legality, no matter how much it is said that “institutions work”. Who to ask? No to the minimum health policy, not to the necessary justice for the millions of unemployed, to the indigenous people and quilombolas, not to the care of nature in devastation, not to the defense against direct threats to the STF, nor against a declared purpose of a military coup. Under the guise of legality, notorious corrupt people are shielded, habeas corpus is easily granted to politicians indicted for illegalities and even crimes, and hundreds of feminicides and discrimination and even murders of LGBTI members remain unpunished.

I will allow myself to use the words of two sociologists because I found in them the best expressions to describe what I feel and think about our presumed democracy: Thiago Antônio de Oliveira Sá, sociologist and university professor (cf. The hijacking of Brazilian institutions, on the portal Major Card) and Pedro Demo, a study colleague in Brazil and Germany, professor at the University of Brasília, one of the most brilliant minds I know with a vast body of scientific research. I only use significant topics from the book. Introduction to Sociology: complexity, interdisciplinarity and social inequality (Atlas, p. 329-333), where he directly addresses the theme of democracy in Brazil.

I begin with Oliveira Sá in the aforementioned article in Major Card: “The public is an annex of the private. Expertise gives way to malice. Institutional corrosion is easily visualized: obscurantists and rude as Ministers of Education; an ecocide that spends its cattle on the environment; a ruralist at the head of agriculture poisons us with her more than 500 legalized pesticides; a fundamentalist evangelical takes care of women and other minorities with her machismo and her obsession with the sexuality of others. Let's not forget the Prime Minister of Health, a lobbyist for private plans, extending his visible hand over the SUS. An emissary from the financial market runs the Ministry of Economy. A crazy, proud pariah and anti-globalist (whatever that may be), makes Brazil an international embarrassment in foreign affairs. A racist at the head of the Palmares Foundation. Federal police converted into private bodyguards for the presidency and its children. The Attorney General's Office ridding the entrepreneur's face of cracks. A military man in Health needs no further explanation…. judges who have a side, look at the new leaks of the non-republican plots of Moro, Dallagnol and their accomplices. Absurd, but not surprising: the old conversion of judicial instances into a weapon of dominant groups. To persecute opponents, to derail their candidacies in favor of others”.

Don't lose Pedro Demo's forcefulness. What he wrote in 2002 is worth much more for 2021: “Our democracy is a national staging of refined hypocrisy, full of “beautiful” laws, but always made, in the last instance, by the ruling elite so that it serves it from beginning to end. Our democracy crudely mirrors the 'struggle for power' in the most Machiavellian sense of the struggle for privileges. A politician without privileges is a spurious figure in our scenario – from the outset, these are people who are characterized by earning well, working little [my comment: see former deputy Jair Bolsonaro for successive mandates], doing business, employing relatives and cronies, enriching themselves at the expense of public coffers; enter the market from above. But there are exceptions that confirm the rule... The 1988 Constitution itself does not exactly harbor a collective national project, tuned under the baton of justice and equalization of opportunities, but a corporatist proposal shredded through individualized pressure: the magistrates made their chapter, as well such as the police, the universities, the legislature, the judiciary, the Executive and the private sector... It is the much praised by Ulysses Guimarães of "Citizen Constitution", but which has an extreme corporatist conception, far removed from the interests of the majority... many proposals but without any connection with financial and institutional basis… In the end we made a cheap imitation of the Welfare State. But there are good things like the fiscal responsibility law to avoid spending what is not collected... The Legislature, far from defending ideas, proposals, equity, defends funds, slices of power, exclusive privileges. It is the main place for business, here and there... It is therefore not difficult to show that our democracy is only formal, farcical, which solemnly coexists with the misery of the great majorities. If we were to link democracy with social justice, our democracy would be its own negation.. In general, the dominant political class does not notice any gesture aimed at overcoming historical ills planted in absurd privileges for the few... Our poor excruciating policy translates into the misery of our democracy. That is why it is so important to maintain the political ignorance of the masses” (p. 333).

The political reality under Bolsonaro is much worse than the one depicted above. It aims to bring the country back to the pre-Enlightenment phase, of the universalization of knowledge, rights and democracy in the regressive direction to the dark times of the worst of the late Middle Ages, not the golden Middle Ages with its immense cathedrals, with the creation of universities, with its summations of theology, with its sages, mystics and saints. Everything that was created in the Lula-Dilma governments that had a popular flavor or included the impoverished in society was literally dismantled in a criminal way, as it implied suffering for those who had always suffered historically.

We are astonished that those judicial and political authorities who could bring legally-founded actions against the president's irresponsibility and social crimes do not move either because they feel complicit or because they lack a patriotic spirit and even lack a sense of social justice. As they live miles away from the people's drama and see their acquired rights and guaranteed privileges, they are not moved by noble compassion to use the legal instruments at their disposal to rid the nation of what is destroying it, and they continue to cling even more to that same perverse intent.

Pope Francis is right when he speaks several times to world social movements, those who want another world because this one is hell or purgatory for them: “don't expect anything from above, because there is always more of the same or worse. Start with yourselves, that is to say, the crowds must occupy the streets and squares and chase away those who kidnapped their opportunities to be people, to feel subject to a minimum of dignity and joy in life. We hope that happens. Only after they feel threatened do dominants join. If we are not careful, they will appropriate the emerging energy for their own private ends. But what should be has strength: the removal as soon as possible of those who carry out a necrophilic policy against their own people”.

Faced with the horizon's obscurity and, at great cost, keeping hope against hope, I make my Master's words, also taken with deep regret: "tristis est anima mea usque ad mortem".

*Leonardo Boff He is a theologian, philosopher and writer. Author, among other books by The covid-19: Earth's counterattack against humanity (Voices).

 

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