The political effects of the pandemic

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By TARSUS GENUS*

The “coronavirus” kills, but shame also kills

Trump – his model and inspiration – rages around the limits of representative democracy in the US: he courts the Klu-klux-Klan, disparages blacks and Latinos, feeds denialism and exudes hatred from every pore. He raises the “specter of communism”, which only inhabits his fascist dreams and treats his political opponents as enemies of the nation he idealized. And the one he intends to impose, as a model far removed from that idealized by his “Founding Countries”. Trump is the mad father of the nationalism of the rich countries, who only accepts alliances with bloodhounds and does not care, in his madness, about the future of his compatriots, much less about the future of humanity. Trump only lives the hysterical sublimation of his fascist present: without past and without future.

Threatened by Joe Biden’s political superiority in public discourse and also in the debate, recently promoted by Fox News, Trump has already said – for the umpteenth time –, as Bolsonaro had done, that he will not accept “any result other than his victory”. He calls on his supremacist cliques to intimidate voters on polling day, promotes suspicions about votes through the Post Office and secures a majority on the Supreme Court, to try to secure a victory at any cost. He has already appointed to the Supreme Court, in place of the great jurist Ruth Ginsburg who died on September 18th – the ultra conservative Amy Barret, 48 years old, which would correspond, here in Brazil, to appointing someone terribly evangelical to the STF.

A sobering article by Larry Rother (Time\05\10) brings alarming political details about the crisis of liberal-representative democracy in the most powerful country in the world. Larry's article stimulates reflection on this crisis in Latin America and proposes us to think, albeit precariously, in three paradigmatic situations in South America. After the “fall of the Wall” and the end of the Soviet Union, when the world’s lefts began to defend democracy as a “universal value” and gave up armed struggle, “things” changed from bad to worse, all over the world: the The extreme right and the fascist right are committed to proving that liberal-representative democracy is not and cannot be a good way to improve the world. Will it be true?

Whether by recognizing the practical impossibility of the armed path in the face of the interventionist power of the Empire, or by understanding – in principle – that the democratic-representative path could provide at least solidary humanist advances (which could give dignity to the lives of the exploited and miserable), the renunciation of left-wing violence – in the capitalist West – seems to be corrected by fascistoid “trumpism” in the US. It threatens to destroy the conquests of the democratic enlightenment, the conquests of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the universal conquests of science, accumulated over the last 50 years, in the protection of the Planet's climate and health. Not to mention the depreciation of gender achievements, anti-racist movements and the universal fight against hunger. Let's see how the paradigms closest to us react.

In Argentina, President Alberto Fernandez, although he still maintains a good position in the polls, is suffering from the effects of the Pandemic, which stopped the application of the economic recovery plan and the activation of employment in his Government. The situation could lead the country to the possibility of a serious exchange rate crisis and Fernandez – an honest, democratic and progressive politician – may be unarmed to respond to it. It is an economically devastated country with few international cooperation alternatives that can be activated quickly to sustain reasonable growth rates that offer fiscal relief for social protection programs, which are fundamental in these times of crisis.

The promoters of the liberal rentier process, which took the country to levels of unemployment only known during its Military Regime, are already preparing to “pounce” and will certainly do so, as in Honduras, Paraguay and Brazil, “within” the liberal-representative system. The shadow of Perón – both from the left and from the “Triple A”, of the rightist Lopez Rega – still haunts Argentina and if Fernandez inherited the electorate of President Cristina, it seems that he did not inherit the workers and popular mobilization, which supported Peronism on the left, outside Parliament. Will Argentine democracy survive?

The Bolivian paradigm is somewhat indecipherable. An unstable country by “nature”, which entered the 1952th century in 70, through armed revolution, had dozens of Presidents and Dictators since its “national revolution” of that year. As a result of an incredible “leftist” military coup in the XNUMXs – a time when bloody dictatorships proliferated in Latin America – Bolivia had a General of indigenous origin as President. It was the great General Juan José Torres, who sought to purge the Army of its domination by drug trafficking and remove right-wing officers from command positions, as a group that curbed Bolivian nationalism, which at the time was supported by a good part of the Armed Forces.

This hero – who presided over the country between October 1970 and August 1971 – was deposed by General Hugo Banzer and his group of fascist soldiers and went into exile in Argentina. There he was assassinated by “Triple A”, an extreme right-wing Peronist group, on June 2, 1976. The shadow of Torres and the 52 Revolution is projected today on Evo Morales, who was also overthrown by a new type of coup, analogous to the launched against Lugo (Paraguay) and Dilma. The shadow of General Torres hovers over Bolivia, in the dignity of the popular masses, now again in the streets in the name of democracy and the defense of national sovereignty. Will Bolivia return to a period of political democracy, which was enviable in the time of Evo Morales?

In Brazil, Bolsonaro humiliates most of the mainstream press, because it has gone – from being actively complicit in his intentions of defeating the PT – to being a hostage to the reforms he makes possible with the “centrão”. By the way, thinking about it, Bolsonaro cannot “technically” constitute himself as a paradigm, because he is just a deposit of irrational hatred in containment, to prepare for 2022, which only remains in power because it is anchored in the commitment to destroy the State Social, as the best that the country's “ruling classes” can offer, to lead them as political representation. It is in Bolsonaro's face, by the way, that she sees herself, when confronted with the mirror of history, as Dorian Gray saw himself in the decomposed figure of Oscar Wilde's mirror.

The gigantic figure of Getúlio Vargas, however, is a specter that still haunts the country, although today's poor and miserable people no longer remember him. It is present in the Social State of the 88 Constitution, in democratic and developmental Governments – welcoming the same poor and miserable – that Lula and Dilma, mainly welcomed in their social policies. In Brizola's struggles for democracy and Agrarian Reform and even in the Military Governments, when they defended national sovereignty, built Itaipu and accelerated the industrialization of the country.

In the 90 years of the 30 Revolution – which promoted here a late part of our incomplete bourgeois revolution – who knows, maybe we can recover the meaning of that action that opened the paths of modern Brazil, now supported by new political and social foundations: against fascism and the state militia corruption; for national sovereignty today kneeling before the global criminal of chloroquine and for the resumption of the eradication of misery and poverty.

The “coronavirus” kills, but shame also kills: Bolivia can show a path that leads far beyond what the media oligopoly offers us, which defends democracy in the abstract, but accepts to throw concrete human beings – without protection and without salary – in the hell of apparent market rights. Shame can kill, but it can also revive the idea of ​​struggle and equality, present today in the people of the Bolivian altiplano and in the streets of La Paz. With their colorful clothes and their vast incandescent hearts, the people revere General Torres and Evo Morales, who threw sparks of light and dignity over the people, who did not give up on the Nation, Democracy and Justice. As Getúlio had done in the Revolution 30 and 24 years later with his heroic suicide.

(*) Tarso Genro was Governor of the State of Rio Grande do Sul, Mayor of Porto Alegre, Minister of Justice, Minister of Education and Minister of Institutional Relations in Brazil.

 

 

 

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