Today there will be marmalade

Image: Elyeser Szturm

By Tercio Redondo*

It's pre-Carnival, but the republic is already tearing up the costume, or the mask, as you like.

In Rio de Janeiro, the economy minister adopted Goebbels' vocabulary to talk about civil servants. Like the Jew in Hitler's Germany, in Guedes and Bolsonaro's Brazil, the server is the parasite that sucks the lifeblood of the nation. It is possible that, in a forthcoming demonstration in defense of the victimized homeland, the minister will present in a didactic power point the physiognomonic traits shared by teachers, doctors, nurses and police, as well as by career ministry officials. The minister will have to do his homework: first the clinical diagnosis, then the treatment to eradicate the disease.

The newly departed culture secretary had already outlined a Goebbelsian speech, complete with impeccable scenery and costumes. Only the interpretation was left to be desired, and so he was replaced by an actress. In England it was thought strange that an actress of soap opera had taken on the task, but journalists on the island thought: the royal family's own performance has not been great. In fact, it has turned out to be quite embarrassing. Let us refrain for the moment from criticizing the barbarians.

In the Federal Supreme Court, a minister decided that personal offense is a constitutional right of the President of the Republic. It was unclear whether the right extends to other citizens. It would be possible, for example, to call it trickster and remain unpunished? Difficultly. When called a malandra, in a gesture of moral greatness, she could even base herself on the newly formed jurisprudence and declare: let's be fair! I cleared the President, I cannot now ask for the punishment of those who call me a malandra. The problem is that, as happens every day, the minister's monocratic decision could be reversed by another minister's monocratic decision. And then? The matter would be taken to the full court, and the unwary would be at the mercy of the unfathomable moods of its members.

Carnival is coming. Will the fascists have the time and will to invent a new costume or have they decided that the king will be definitively and shamelessly naked? And the boy who points the finger at the sovereign? Will you have to make do with pepper spray instead of a spray gun?

* Round Round is professor of German literature at USP.

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