socialism and freedom

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By VLADIMIR SAFATLE*

Manifest with a legislative intervention program

I decided to participate directly in the electoral process, assuming a candidacy for federal deputy. The main reason is to believe that one of the greatest consequences of four years of proto-fascist rule among us is the brutal limitation of our political imagination and our horizon of expectations.

The areas of action and debate in which I worked for more than a decade (University, press, public debates of all kinds, human rights commissions) are of great importance and always will be, but the extreme right that governs us will not be defeated, even if you lose the election. It will continue to impose its guidelines, organize the agenda for debates and decisions, place itself as an offensive force for transformation, while we accept one setback after another.

This diagnosis is shared by many, many. Therefore, the first step was to organize a Council with more than fifty people: activists, artists, professors, cultural and book professionals. Not a mere advisory board, but a board of directors that works as a collective intelligence before and after elections. The first thing we did was draw up a manifesto. In it, we place the combat axes that will serve as a constant field of struggle.

You may read our proposals and find them unrealistic. But unrealistic is the reality we are in. The vast majority of proposals have been implemented in different countries or are on the agenda, seriously discussed. To think they are unrealistic demonstrates how our political imagination has atrophied, how our conception of “realism” is a direct child of our fears.

The tone of our campaign was not the reduction of politics to a language emptied of tension, closer to video game propaganda than a call to decision and fight. Much less was it a constant flirtation with personalism and the advertising construction of characters. Your line is different. As Carlos Marighella said: “we are on the threshold of a new era in Brazil, which will mark the radical transformation of our society and the appreciation of Brazilian women and men”. The first condition for such a transformation is to really believe in it and act on that belief. That's what we're doing now. Long live socialism and long live freedom!

 

The Manifest

The most brutal of all the political defeats that fascism imposes on us is the silencing of the imagination. In various parts of the world, we see people fighting for structural transformation at all levels, putting their imagination at the service of the radical rejection of the order that governs us. In Brazil, we must above all avoid believing that “it is not yet time”. We are united because we believe that right now, in the face of the evident strength of a fascism that will remain among us, whether or not we lose this election, it is time to say that we want and can do much more.

Indeed, there is no better time than now. The rise of Jair Bolsonaro, and what he represents, can only be fought by circulating the concrete forms of another society, radically different from everything that this government defends and represents. The less we want, the less we get and the less we are given.

The more we concretely point out the horizon we want, however distant it currently seems, the more we will be able to engage those who are dissatisfied and are not afraid to show their discontent. What seems distant today can become impressively close in a short period of time. We've seen this in recent years in Brazil, but on its darker side. It's time to show that the same goes for our side.

We know that a federal deputy mandate can become a space for combat, mobilization and circulation of everything that tries to make us believe that it no longer makes sense to circulate. Therefore, we build our intervention horizon with proposals and policies that are debated, implemented in various parts of the world, but are absent in Brazil. This is a way of leading Brazilian society to refuse, once and for all, to isolate itself from its own potential for transformation and fear naming what we actually need.

We want a federal deputy candidacy willing to fight for this program and force it to constitute a new public sphere of debate, decision and action. This is the main meaning of a candidacy for federal deputy today: fighting against Jair Bolsonaro and everything he represents, daring more than we have dared so far. To defeat fascism is to defeat its causes.

 

Axes of Combat in the Legislature

 

parity state

All decision-making bodies of the federal State (Congress, STF, courts, collegiate bodies, political parties, public offices) must respect a parity structure between genders. Such parity must take into account the proportionality of race.

 

multinational state

Indigenous peoples prevail in relation to the establishment of the national state. Therefore, they have prerogatives of legal forms, modes of production, occupation of territory, social systems that must be recognized, as well as serve as an engine to overcome the nation-state. Creation of a Decolonization Secretariat with the status of a Ministry capable of determining educational, social and economic policies for the realization of a structural decolonial process. Recognize nature as a subject of law.

 

End of commodification of needs

Elementary needs for housing, transport, health and education must gradually cease to be objects of commercial exploitation. Initial proposals in this sense: rent price tables, limitation of property ownership to a maximum of five properties per city, right to occupy empty houses, creation of a tax on financial transactions and heavy taxation on bank profits to be fully reverted to the expansion of the Unified Health System.

 

Decomposition of technocracy and emergence of popular power

Decisions about “public policies” pass to the direct deliberation of workers. Creation of national councils of teachers, health professionals and transport system professionals who will decide on actions in these sectors. Constitutional modifications proposed by the National Congress must be ratified or rejected by plebiscite. Salaries of deputies, judges and other high-ranking civil servants indexed to the salaries of teachers and nurses in the public system.

 

Working class as ruling class

Sectors considered strategic for the national economy must pass the self-management of workers, all medium and large companies must have at least 30% of their deliberative councils composed of workers chosen by themselves. Companies that undergo workers' self-management will be fully tax exempt for fifteen years.

 

egalitarian economic state

Establishing a maximum wage (which includes all other earnings), limiting the difference between the highest and lowest wages to one in twenty, transferring taxation on consumption to taxation on income, creating remuneration for domestic work, female workers, mothers and caregivers, and use of domestic work time in calculating retirement time.

 

No more misery jobs

Reduction of the working day to 35 hours without a reduction in wages. Regulation of uberized and platform work through the expansion and recognition of labor rights. End of informal work: no work without rights. End of intermittent work, which means that a growing portion of the working class does not have the slightest guarantee of receiving a constant salary and rights. Immediate implementation of a basic income equivalent to the minimum wage and establishment of a policy for its valuation based on Dieese calculations. Revocation of all counter-reforms since the Temer government.

 

End of neoliberal economic management

Diversification of economic policy objectives, including objectives of sustainable growth, job creation and reduction of social inequalities, along with controlling inflation; impediment to excessively high interest rates and an overvalued exchange rate; democratization and diversification of social actors in the elaboration of economic policy; encouraging the creation of collective planning capacity, with emphasis on industrial, regional and science and technology policies. Industrialization based on the development of capacity in green sectors and those with greater intensity of technology and knowledge.

 

Historical reconciliation and anti-slavery justice

Elimination of all monuments and public commemorations to those responsible for the extermination of enslaved peoples, elimination of all monuments and commemorations to operators of the military regime of 64. Replacement of such spaces of memory by the celebration of struggles and popular revolts. Creation of material and financial reparation for descendants of people subjected to slavery. Requirement of an official declaration of pardon by the Brazilian state for perpetrating the crime of genocide and against humanity against populations subjected to slavery. Trial of crimes of genocide committed by the current government during the Covid-19 pandemic.

 

Declaration of a state of climate emergency

End of the use of fossil energy (oil, coal, gas) in ten years and replacement by renewable energy with low impact on communities. Proceed to the immediate suspension, in the Registry database (SICAR), of records overlapping areas of public forests (conservation units, indigenous lands, public forests not designated, etc.) listed in the National Registry of Public Forests (CNFP) of the Service Brazilian Forest.

Allocate 10 million hectares for protection and sustainable use, based on the National Register of Public Forests, to be designated as a protected area of ​​restricted and sustainable use (according to SNUC – National System of Conservation Units) in regions under strong pressure from deforestation, and, increase the percentage of Legal Reserve areas and Permanent Preservation Areas on private properties in the cerrado biomes (from 30 to 50%).

Brazil has 100 million people without sewage collection (representing 47,6% of the population) and only 46% of the sewage produced in the country is treated, in addition to 3 thousand dumps, with a brutal ecological impact. Creation of a binding policy with targets to eliminate such realities in ten years.

 

Decomposition of the state of death

End of the military police and military justice, end of imprisonment for drug possession and theft, removal of all police accused of torture, repeal of the amnesty law and trial of military, businessmen and civilians involved in state terrorism and financing of state apparatuses. torture. End of compulsory military service. End of the exclusion of illegality and imprisonment for contempt of authority; cameras for each officer; renationalization or takeover of private/outsourced prisons.

Creation of a memory museum with the aim of giving visibility to human rights violations practiced by the State during the period of the civil-military dictatorship. Unrestricted access to government documents by all citizens, except for cases that are under judicial secrecy.

 

Struggle against body control

Legalization of abortion, equal marriage, legal recognition of multiple forms of affective relationships, mandatory 24-hour women's police station in each municipality; expansion of the protection and care network for victims of domestic violence and their children.

 

Culture as a strategic sector

Understand and encourage the civilizational role of art and culture and the emancipatory potential they contain. In this sense, some immediate actions will be encouraged. Strengthening of Culture Funds, managed by deliberative Popular Councils, with public notices, laws and transparent and bureaucratic programs. Minimum floor of 2% for the culture budget at the federal level, 1,5% in the states and 1% in the municipalities.

Reduction in the percentage of tax breaks for “sponsoring” companies and a decrease in the importance of tax waivers in favor of direct, decentralized and transparent investments from public funds for all cultural and artistic sectors (strengthening of the Culture Funds).

Guaranteed retirement and unemployment insurance during intermittency periods for cultural workers. Creation of Federal Arts Schools (with activities in different artistic languages) in all cities with more than 500 thousand inhabitants. Radicalization of the democratic process through mechanisms such as conferences, councils, consultations and hearings, with deliberation power.

 

Public, quality and democratic education

Creation of wealth tax, tax on dividends, progressive increase of tax on inheritances up to 40%, as well as tax on conspicuous consumption fully reverted to the federalization of the secondary education system, which will be free. Resumption of the National Education Plan and re-discussion of Secondary Education reforms through National Councils of Teachers.

Strengthening the financial autonomy of universities and elections for rectors without a triple list. Creation of a system of integral schools linked to the guarantee of material conditions for the permanence of students studying full time. Doubling the salary of primary and secondary education teachers by restricting the value of salaries and income of high-ranking members of the judiciary, executive and legislative branches.

 

Mental health as a horizon of emancipation

Public health and mental health demand immediate application of resources and planned public policies, involving the concepts of territory, psychosocial care network and care. The valuation of practices of listening and acceptance of psychological suffering, the critique of the neoliberal expansion of diagnoses, the end of the chronic medicalization of childhood, the reduction of the commitment to mental health by private and religious groups, the valuation of alternative experiences, such as the brigades of mental health, valuing the formation of basic resources in mental health, in schools and institutions make up our proposals to face violence, segregation and social inequality as factors that induce mental suffering.

*Vladimir Safatle, candidate for federal deputy for Psol-SP, is a professor of philosophy at USP. Author, among other books, of Ways of transforming worlds: Lacan, politics and emancipation (Authentic).

 

 

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