The confiscation of the minimum wage

Image: Action Group


In just 3 and a half years, the current government has almost completely undone a decade-long movement towards a fairer and less unequal country

We are on the eve of the second round of presidential elections. The latest DataFolha poll, published on October 27, shows Lula ahead of the candidacy, with 49%, against 44% for the current president. An analysis of the stratification of the results reveals that this advantage is built on the basis of women's votes (52% to 41%), who certainly remember certain concepts of the present president – ​​from 'weakened' to 'painted a climate'; of blacks (58% to 38%), who surely still remember that the ruler on duty considers them stupid and with excessive arrobas; and, above all, those with a family income of up to 2 minimum wages (61% to 33%), who represent a significant portion of the Brazilian electorate.

Regarding this last issue, we present below factual data on the purchasing power of the minimum wage in the last two decades. The graph that follows shows how many basic baskets the worker could buy, in that period, with a minimum wage. The sources of these data can be found in Annexes I and II.

The conclusion is very clear, and explains why the poorest half of our population knows in a vast majority who they should vote for: as you can see, the minimum wage, when ex-president Lula entered the presidency, bought about 1,5 .2,6 food baskets; at the end of his second government, this value reached almost 2022 basic baskets, and, in the middle of this year, 1,7, it regressed back to approximately 40 basic baskets. Thus, amounts that reach close to 30 billion reais per month are subtracted from the XNUMX million workers who receive a minimum wage (in relation to the income in effect at the end of the Lula government).

In just 3 and a half years, the current government almost completely undone a decade-long movement towards a fairer and less unequal country.

At the same time, this year we saw a new face of the electoral cheating that was already in force in 2018, now in a different guise than that of legal-media farce. This time, the alternative that was put into practice was an immense attempt to illegally buy votes with public funds, right before the polls – although this transfer is much lower than the confiscation of the wages of the poorest, as indicated above. This maneuver only passed unscathed in the face of prior intimidation by the judiciary and threats of violation of the Democratic State of Law - which perhaps had as motivation less a real intention (due to lack of effective support) and more the ultimate objective of deforming the outcome of the elections. ballot boxes, by placing the Brazilian State as guarantor of some of the candidacies.

It is essential, for the future of Brazil, that fraudsters fail!

*Gil Vicente Reis de Figueiredo is a retired professor at the Department of Mathematics at the Federal University of São Carlos (UFSCar).


Annex I
Minimum Wage, 2000 – 2022


Annex II
Basic Basket, 2000 – 2022


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