Highlights – XVIII

Image: Anselmo Pessoa


Comments on recent events

The first highlight for this week in Brazil comes from abroad, paradoxically. This is the Chilean plebiscite, which approved in an electoral consultation the making of a new Constitution, through an exclusive and equal Constituent Assembly, to be installed next year. Social and human rights – absent from the Chilean Constitution of the Pinochet era – tend to be re-established, in particular the rights to education and universal and free healthcare. A step forward for Chile, an alert for Brazil.

Fundação Getúlio Vargas conducts the largest and most comprehensive survey on the confidence levels of businessmen in all sectors. The general result of the last round is quite pessimistic. Although businessmen still act – especially in industry – with an idle capacity of just under 50%, even when admitting the possibility of economic growth next year, they warn of the difficulties arising from the instability of the country in which the Presidency of the Republic and the executive branch do not take a stand on the most structuring variables of the Brazilian economy. This is, without a doubt, a novelty, as the majority of the business community supported the rise of the current president and only now, visibly, is manifesting its discontent coated with hopelessness.

On the environment, the clashes between minister Ricardo Salles and Luiz Eduardo Ramos, the general secretary of government, continue. The incident proved Salles' strength, as his position was not shaken by the offenses against the general, a longtime friend of President Bolsonaro. Salles belongs to one of the groups that originated from ideological support for Bolsonaro's rise to power. It will be difficult for him to leave the government, and the general will have to follow orders and accept the tattered excuses of the minister who called him “Maria Gossip”.

On the issue of the environment, it is becoming more and more evident that the fires result from land grabbing operations, with the formation of associations of right-wing farmers, who, on behalf of the big landowners, practice land grabbing and thus extend the country's agricultural frontiers. by illegal methods. This has led to increasing violence, as evidenced by the murder last week of one of the MST leaders in Paraná. It bodes ill for relations in the Brazilian countryside.

Municipal elections are becoming nationalized, especially in Rio and São Paulo. The question is: is Bolsonaro a good godfather? Apparently not, since their candidates are not at the top of the polls either in Rio or in São Paulo. Not to mention other cities, such as Belo Horizonte and Porto Alegre, where local leaders are more independent from the national executive branch.

Finally, it should be noted that the Citizen's Income that would, or will, replace the Bolsa Família is at a very serious impasse. An indecision on whether or not to change the spending ceiling created in the Temer government, as the main point of the Ponte Para o Futuro program. As an alternative, proposals for the legalization of gambling are circulating in the Senate, an old flag of Senator Ciro Nogueira, from the PP of Piauí, remade by other senators, and which should come to light shortly. It is estimated that the legalization of illegal gambling would bring the government revenue of between 50 and 80 billion reais, which would solve the problem of lack of resources for the Citizen's Income.

*Benicio Viero Schmidt is a retired professor of sociology at UnB. Author, among other books, of The State and urban policy in Brazil (LP&M).

See this link for all articles


  • Franz Kafka, libertarian spiritFranz Kafka, libertarian spirit 13/06/2024 By MICHAEL LÖWY: Notes on the occasion of the centenary of the death of the Czech writer
  • The society of dead historyclassroom similar to the one in usp history 16/06/2024 By ANTONIO SIMPLICIO DE ALMEIDA NETO: The subject of history was inserted into a generic area called Applied Human and Social Sciences and, finally, disappeared into the curricular drain
  • About artificial ignoranceEugenio Bucci 15/06/2024 By EUGÊNIO BUCCI: Today, ignorance is not an uninhabited house, devoid of ideas, but a building full of disjointed nonsense, a goo of heavy density that occupies every space
  • João Cândido and the Revolt of the Whipwhip revolt 23/06/2024 By PETRÔNIO DOMINGUES: In the current context, in which there is so much discussion about State reparations for the black population, the name of João Cândido cannot be forgotten
  • The collapse of Zionismfree palestine 80 23/06/2024 By ILAN PAPPÉ: Whether people welcome the idea or fear it, Israel's collapse has become predictable. This possibility should inform the long-term conversation about the future of the region
  • A look at the 2024 federal strikelula haddad 20/06/2024 By IAEL DE SOUZA: A few months into government, Lula's electoral fraud was proven, accompanied by his “faithful henchman”, the Minister of Finance, Fernando Haddad
  • Letter to the presidentSquid 59mk,g 18/06/2024 By FRANCISCO ALVES, JOÃO DOS REIS SILVA JÚNIOR & VALDEMAR SGUISSARDI: “We completely agree with Your Excellency. when he states and reaffirms that 'Education is an investment, not an expense'”
  • Return to the path of hopelate afternoon 21/06/2024 By JUAREZ GUIMARÃES & MARILANE TEIXEIRA: Five initiatives that can allow the Brazilian left and center-left to resume dialogue with the majority hope of Brazilians
  • Chico Buarque, 80 years oldchico 19/06/2024 By ROGÉRIO RUFINO DE OLIVEIRA: The class struggle, universal, is particularized in the refinement of constructive intention, in the tone of proletarian proparoxytones
  • Theological manual of neoliberal neo-PentecostalismJesus saves 22/06/2024 By LEONARDO SACRAMENTO: Theology has become coaching or encouraging disputes between workers in the world of work