A country beyond fiction

Image: Paulinho Fluxuz_


Bolsonaro's Brazil united, in a surprisingly original way, the tragic and the ridiculous

If a writer were to publish a novel with the everyday facts that we see in newspapers in Brazil, he would be accused by critics and literature specialists of inventing unbelievable plots. The daily spectacle of absurdities promoted by the mismanagement of the Inominável is such that it challenges the imaginative capacity of anyone and even professional fiction writers such as, for example, the scriptwriters of evening soap operas.

Whoever produced the Bolsonaro government actually created a terrible plot with grotesque characters and frankly absurd plots. And who was the author of this example of subliterature, too mediocre from any point of view, which we call Brazilian “daily life” or “the institutions that work normally” among other gently false and normative designations? Among others, Globo, the biggest representative of the Coup Press Party. Together “with the Supreme and with everything”.

The plot initially starred Beócio Neves, who was soon replaced in the soap opera due to his emotional instability and bad professional habits, such as repeatedly missing work and, as gossip said, for abusing coffee and other performing substances. As protagonists were then promoted Supreme Court judges and prosecutors and obscure police officers with dubious professional training, but with obstinate performance despite the predictable and repetitive plot of the coup soap opera. Leaving aside the role of Conde Drácula and Judas Iscariot that he played in the (interminable) coup of 2016, MDB's Vampirão, Fearful Timorato, jailhouse bully, who remembers him? It passed as “the clown fart”, to quote another brief supporting role today duly forgotten.

What is certain is that the continuity of the coup plot and the apparent stability in power of the far-right Messiah and his associates, all of the same moral and intellectual strain as the leader, seems to affirm that in fact the plot of the coup is familiar to us, echoes something of the our “structural” reality. In fact, Bolsonaro is the spitting image of the Brazilian ruling class and, in this sense, its ideal and finished representative. Some, like Globo and Mr. Dória, for example, pretend not to like Bolsonaro's explicit vulgarity, but they really like the general dismantling of the country that he, in the absence of another, commands today. And ignorance, together with cruelty, is the common link between all of them, between all those who ordered and the agents of the coup, that is, between the hard core of the ruling class in Brazil: bankers, financiers, businessmen, and their representatives and executors, such as politicians, journalists or para-journalists, military, jurists, etc., all historically trained and committed to the ideology and slavery and colonial practice of the past that we still carry as a historical condemnation of a country that, by will and determination of its “owners”, cannot be.

For the masters of the country, subordination to the masters of the world is the only way forward and woe betide those who dare to challenge, even minimally, the dogma of material and symbolic subordination to global neoliberal power!

And yet, it is not difficult to see the constitutional instability, the real dangers of this choice, of this path: Rede Globo, for example, promoted the coup and the crisis that will end it – it will be sold to foreign groups, according to the journalist Luís Nassif who knows the subject well. And the crisis will put an end to part of the business community in the country, which supported and continues to support the coup that resulted in the Inominável and its parade of calamities and grotesque characters (of more than recognized professional incompetence) in positions of power.

The regime change with the 2016 coup resulted in the present pseudo-democracy and its fake elections, which also ensnare and paralyze a part of the left-wing opposition. All of this is a proven recipe for an even bigger disaster than the disaster we live in today.

The calamity of Bolsonaro's misgovernment today materially affects the majority of the population and benefits the minority of financial power and its servants. But as we all live in the same geographic and institutional space, despite the internal diversities, it is not very difficult to see that the continuous promotion of the crisis as a form of (mis)government has its limits, which have repercussions on the structuring and solidarity of the whole.

Crises are essentially autonomous processes. As scientists explain, entropic processes, for example, cannot be thought of with strictly deterministic categories. Translated into our daily lives: the material and symbolic manipulation of the country and its people has epistemological (as well as ontological) limits. Even the omniscient and omnipotent Brazilian ruling class, in power since the 1500s, would do better to soak their beards.

It is not just part of the left that the current “post-democratic” regime deceives with its selective institutional formalities, the ruling class is betting on the definitive institutionalization of the 2016 coup. . But the scientific study of climate variations, for example, teaches us precisely prudence, the limits of strict determinism and the complexity inherent both to climatic processes and, the analogy is valid, to historical ones.

And speaking of analogies, let us remember that the French Revolution began with a revolt by the aristocracy against the constituted power of the time for the restoration, in the midst of an infrastructural crisis, of its disused privileges. They triggered a larger process, the Revolution, in which they finally lost, in addition to some privileges, power, possessions and their own heads.

The Brazilian middle class embarked on the sailboat of the 2016 coup to defend their meager “privileges” against “lulo-petismo” and the offspring of domestic servants entering public universities and airports. The dominant class promoted the coup to guarantee its super profits and pass on the cost of the crisis of dependent capitalism within the systemic crisis of global capitalism, a cost that must be paid by the workers and by the middle class itself numb in its regressive ideology and its abysmal ignorance.

Historical repetition, Marx said with regard to the historical heritage of the French Revolution, goes from tragedy to farce. Bolsonaro's Brazil united, in a surprisingly original way, the tragic and the ridiculous. As a literary genre, Brazil could not exist. It would be, or is in fact, an aesthetic aberration, a categorical nonsense, or even a logical-conceptual impossibility.

*Marcelo Guimaraes Lima is a writer, researcher and artist.


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