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From the decline of the old left, a new right emerges in Brazil

Itamar Garcez has been a journalist since 1983. He graduated in Social Communication from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul). He worked as a reporter for Jornal do Brasil, O Estado de S. Paulo, Gazeta Mercantil and Diário Catarinense. He acted as a communication consultant. He has been personally acompanying national politics in Brasilia since 1988. Currently, he writes for Os Divergentes, Moreno's Blog and for Arko Advice's Blog.

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Itamar Garcez - Photo by Lais Garcez

By Itamar Garcez

Resurgence of the right was one of the legacies of the left-wing governments of the Workers’ Party (Partido dos Trabalhadores, PT), whose thirteen years of administration determined the course of Brazilian politics and economy.

For a long time, as if ashamed, right-wingers in Brazil preferred to call themselves “centrists”.

Few were bold enough to openly align themselves at the right side of the field, as did the renowned economist and diplomat Roberto Campos. A “destro” thinker, Campos wrote the presentation of Raymond Aron’s book The Opium of the Intellectuals (1955) in the Portuguese edition of 1980, whose aim was to disrupt the “sinistra” thinking.

A recent survey by O Estado de S. Paulo, a Brazilian centennial and respected newspaper, pointed out that the former shyness of the right is giving place to an uninhibited militancy. Social networks – always them – have boosted this contingent that never ceased to exist, because its atavism in Brazil’s history.

Stronger after 21 years of military (right) dictatorship (1964-1985) the left in Brazil took over Academy, the artistic world and the “politically correct” thinking. Leftist hegemony ruled everywhere, its “ideological patrollers” always ready to subdue any divergent thinking.

To this day, leftists classify as “fascists” those who supported President Dilma Rousseff’s impeachment in 2016. But this label, that in the past was used to frighten those who dared to think differently, is now regarded as a joke.

It should be noted that Rousseff (PT) was deposed in 2016 by a large majority of the two chambers of the Brazilian Parliament. To that end, it had the backing of all eleven Supreme Court justices (mostly PT-appointed, including event some former PT militants) and most of the population, who took the streets to ask for her removal . This does not mean that people supported the then vice-president Michel Temer, now in command of the Nation and equally unpopular.

Ms. Roussef deposition, after a long legal process, was based on a billion dollar tax fraud. Not to mention that Rousseff’s administration (2011-2016) authored the deepest economic recession in the country’s history, a per capita GDP decline of almost 10 per cent, double-digit inflation and almost 13 million unemployed – apart a gigantic corruption scheme unveiled by Lava-Jato, a multifarious joint investigative operation of the Federal Police and the Public Prosecutor’s Office.

At the same time, gay and liberal

One of the new right most odd aspects is that liberal economic thinking now comes together also with more liberalsocial behaviour than it had in the past.

Presently, the same people who defend the free market and privatizations seem more inclined to accept the gay marriage, for instance. At the same time reactionary social views still persevere largely in the old right.

While the left persists with the same centennial dogmas, part of the right appears open and multi-faceted, its basic unity coming from the rejection of left-wing conservative thinking.

But make no mistake, though. Both groups have deep roots and strength in Brazilian history and society. Now, both are naked and ready for confrontation. It is from this muddlethat a new Brazil will emerge, for better or for worse.

As in the political-economic perplexity of the rest of the planet, no one from this parte of the globe knows what will result from this mess. If someone tells you they know, believe me, they would be lying.

Follow Mr. Garcez articles in Portuguese at Os Divergentes and at Arko Advice’s Blog

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