Election to reverse the signs

Image: Mohamed Abdelsadig


A critique of the recent article by Vladimir Safatle

Michel Foucault showed, in history of madness, that the hospitalization of the insane came before knowledge about madness. Similarly, in the article “A revolution of inverted signs”, published on the website the earth is round, Vladimir Safatle assesses that the desire on the left to stamp a concept of confinement to Bolsonarism fell short of understanding the reasons, constituted in the movement packed by the illegal arrangements of Lava Jato in collusion with the media, rent seeking and the interests of US corporations. Theoretically, the cart would have been before the horse.

“Hate speech”, “resentment” and the “death drive”, although important themes, were insufficient to explain adherence to the destruction project of the current president, who elected two governors in the first round (Rio de Janeiro, Minas Gerais) and, in advantage, led a candidate to the second round (São Paulo), in the three units of the federation with the highest electoral density. We interned “crazy” fanatics, without yet having the elements to understand the phenomenon that travels around the world (United States, Poland, Hungary, Sweden, France, Italy).

Vladimir does not mention the work of Benjamin Teitelbaum, in Eternity's War: The Return of Traditionalism and the Rise of the Populist Right, but it contains the theory of what can, at the discretion, be called “revolution” or “counter-revolution” on the world map. On the pages of this website, the text on “Covid-19: the crisis that radical traditionalists were waiting for”, and reflections born from the unavoidable Teitelbaumian paradigm, such as “The revolution against liberal democracy”, of my own and , about the result of the polls on October 2, “Election and tradition”, by Laurindo Lalo Leal Filho. Other commentators bring up neo-fascist empowerment, in the illiberal centrifuge that agitates the “crossroads of democracy”.

Vladimir Safatle seeks to decode the rationality behind the behaviors assumed in the mismanagement, in countdown, by remembering the emergency aid achieved in the pandemic as opposed to the strengthening of SUS structures; The homeschooling as an alternative to regular schooling and the clear substitution of government public security policies for the arming of individuals. In areas of classical contractualism (health, education, security), what seemed crazy is the faithful application of the principle formulated by the old theorists of laissez-faire (Hayek, Mises, Friedman), consistent with the model of the minimal State wielded by hard neoliberalism.

The support of vast sectors of the business community is due to the agreement with a proposal of reduced functions for the State, as well as the extension of the economic notion of the free market to individual survival, in the social system. When a businessman proclaims that, instead of giving alms at traffic lights, the driver should drive the car over the beggars – that is, the losers who failed in the competition for life – he only stretches the Washington Consensus to paroxysm.

Since the French Revolution marked the end of Ancien Régime with the propagation of the value of “equality”, which democratic common sense based on the guiding ideal of egalitarianism classifies as a civilizational setback, strictly speaking, it shows the tension of the convergence of neoliberalism with traditionalism (translated into the expanded conservatism of neo-Pentecostalism) and neofascism. The triad of barbarism haunts conventional sociability with its ill omen. Morals and customs are mixed at every corner with hypocrisy and cynicism, if you “paint an atmosphere”.

Like João Amoêdo, founder of the Partido Novo, the iconic organization of ultraliberal archaism that wants a return to nineteenth-century capitalism, segments of the bourgeoisie have already realized that the re-election of Jair Bolsonaro is the final straw in the rites of civility and in the capacity of democracy to institutionalize and managing the class struggle in Western society. The impact on tectonic layers on a planetary scale would be dramatic, with social conflicts now having only the extreme right and left as protagonists. The serious political instability in the republican institutions can then lead to the reversal of the signs of change in the order. Such is the panic of the ruling classes that, yesterday, they demonized the former president to elect Bolsonaro and, today, they need Lula to ward off the genocide. In the “delay elites”, a portion is cautious. Another, risks all or nothing.

“We have definitely entered the era of extremes. The great alliance (capital and labor) did not work”. The impression given by the USP professor's narrative is that “the crooked angels” must accelerate the process of polarization, as if we were in a revolutionary vortex. An extremist attitude that implied a sudden ideological shift in the campaign, capable of throwing the forces attracted to the Frente Ampla Brasil da Esperança into the sea. As if the dispute was not between the democratic rule of law and the authoritarian state of exception, but between capitalism and socialism.

“Let us clearly enunciate the forms of another society” is an appeal that instigates the imagination of militancy, without establishing a real interpellation with the sociopolitical adversities in the present conjuncture, whose character is defensivist. Despite the economic crisis, the pressing issue of “entrepreneurship” would not even be in transition mode, treated as a mere modality of “servitude”, tout court. Take it easy with the walker. The game is in progress. Lula won the initial round of the election by six million votes. He rhymed Brazilian with warrior, in the courage to be happy.

If we don't host demonstrations the size of the one that took place on September 7, pro-Bolsonaro, at the expense of millions in agribusiness to enlist transport and food for caravans coming from distant regions; It should be noted that wherever Lula goes during an election campaign, he spontaneously draws huge crowds. The good seed planted by fertile public policies in popular governments continues to bear fruit. Years of slander, the unjust imprisonment of the leader, the removal of an honest president and the day-to-day criminalization of the left in general have not defeated the working people. The balance that matters now beckons possibilities on the horizon.

Rejected by the pororoca provoked by the encounter between neoliberalism and traditionalism and neofascism, the program that invests in the construction of protective macrostructures carries the energy that comes from the feeling of the streets. The observation about the number of cases of anxiety disorders, in a country that has one of the highest rates of depression diagnoses (13,5% of the population), places the nation on the podium of psychological distress. However, emotion, rebellion, resilience and the will to change the status quo it is evident in the growing percentages of party preference for the PT, in the increase of the parliamentary bench and in the social movements. Creative thinking, critical awareness and associative spirit are maintained in articulations from living “ruins” on the ground of domination. As pieces in the mosaic of a utopia, he also recognizes Vladimir Safatle.

By the way, the magazine Cult (Sep/2022) features a special report on the unusual experience of psychoanalysis in urban peripheries, with a proposal of welcoming beyond the office. In the words of Tales Ab'Sáber, “the first theoretical fact of this historically situated clinic is that money does not circulate through it, the value marker of the surrounding commodity form, a visible organizer of social differentiation and the logic of exclusion and regulation of access to goods. and rights, in a fully developed capitalist society, which works like this”. On the other hand, Boaventura de Sousa Santos, in The future starts now: from pandemic to utopia, dedicates chapter 7 (p. 203-227) to listing community, indigenous and administrative initiatives in the face of the abandonment of the State in different geographies, in Latin America and Africa. The effort is in the superior synthesis, national and international, of local struggles. To repeat Gilberto Maringoni, “I'm sorry, but you can win”.

Lula's victory on October 30 will boost the radicalization of democracy, with the opening of citizen participation channels for the elaboration of new public policies for the assertion of collective rights. Immediately, it deepens the unification of progressives in organizational and political terms, in addition to resuming the integration of the Latin American continent and leveraging the BRICS towards a global multipolarity. It is no exaggeration to say that, here, the fate of the planet is decided by stopping the tremendous madness that is the irreversible deforestation of the Amazon. To evoke the verse of the poet Thiago de Mello: “It is dark / but I sing / because the morning will come”. Yes, with Lula-la.

* Luiz Marques is a professor of political science at UFRGS. He was Rio Grande do Sul's state secretary of culture in the Olívio Dutra government.

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