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Brazil’s Bolsonaro-Led Far Right Wins a Victory Far More Sweeping and Dangerous Than Anyone Predicted. Its Lessons Are Global.


Brazil’s Bolsonaro-Led Far Right Wins a Victory Far More Sweeping and Dangerous Than Anyone Predicted. Its Lessons Are Global.

Glenn Greenwald

For the past thirty years, Congressman Jair Bolsonaro was a fringe extremist in Brazilian politics, known mostly for outlandish, deliberately inflammatory quotes in which he paid homage to the most notorious torturers of the 1964-1985 military regime, constantly heralded the 1964 coup as a “defense of democracy,” told a female socialist colleague in Congress that she was too ugly to “deserve


Hungary, Poland, Philippines, now Brazil. How close are we?


How close are we? Closer than any lover of democracy would like to admit. According to a recent survey I heard of but don’t know the source of, about one-third of Millenials don’t think democracy is necessary or necessarily the best form of government. The right has done a great job of killing civic education in this country. “Zee plan ist vorking”. They have spent the last 50 years working to dumb down the populace to accept fascist rule, after millions of young men fought and hundreds of thousands died, fighting against fascism in WWII. Even many aging veterans have come to accept it under the lies told to them by the “Fake News” network they vegetate in front of in The Home in their dementia-addled minds at the end of their lives. I am fortunate to have been among the last American students who were taught to value a democratic form of government and participate.


Like flies, conservatives are drawn to shit.


No. This is not good enough. Come on, Glenn–you can’t say that Lula was the overwhelming favorite in the polls, sidelined by a conviction widely seen as illegitimate, and this extremely extreme rightwing candidate is Brazil’s second choice, without at least attempting an explanation! It makes no sense, is just not credible. Now: do you trust the polls? What is the mechanism for voting in Brazil–computers, paper ballots? In Honduras every precinct posted its final numbers on the doors and these numbers were collected by the opposition before the official count, so we KNOW they stole that election. It’s horrible, unbearable if this happens imn Brazil but even worse if Bolsonaro won legitimately–but also incredible.


Look up Brazil’s car wash scandal (over $2 billion in bribes).

Look up the murder rate (over 62,000 in a year).

At this point, any crazy loon could get elected there.


You’re right that the elites have been very effective at dumbing down the population, especially when 1/3 of Millenials don’t favour ‘we the people’ to be trusted with running our lives. But by the same token it means that 2/3’s of Millenials haven’t bought into the mainstream BS either and I doubt that they will. The plan is working only in the fact that the 1/3 is far more active in propping up the 1% than the rest of us are in tearing it down.


Because “. . . you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” (Jn.8.32); could Brazil’s Bolsonaro’s victory be a political reality, and also symbolized, by corporate state government’s treatment of Julian Assange: that journalism revealing truth means imprisonment and death to those daring to make them known?


some uncomfortable lessons - the sainted “people” are often full of misogyny (we saw some of that here in the Clinton-Trump battle) and homophobia, we often like a “strong” leader making democracy, imperfect as it is, both fragile and desirable, that left of center governments cannot afford to wink at corruption as it will be used against them effectively, and that momentum is on the side of the right wing almost everywhere (did you catch that Ontario and Quebec both voted in right-wing governments?) I hope we can have an honest conversation about why this is happening.