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Issue #1922      July 6, 2020

Down with Bolsonaro, Mourão and Guedes!

Brazilian workers continue to face the drastic consequences resulting from the health crisis and the genocidal policy of the Bolsonaro/Mourão government, which, in addition to ignoring the terrifying situation caused by the vertiginous growth of the pandemic, continues to advance with the attacks on social rights and threats to democratic freedoms, which were got in the struggles against the business-military dictatorship imposed by the 1964 coup.

In the field of health, we see the increasing numbers of the pandemic, with more than 1.2 million and 200 thousand infected and more than 55,000 deaths up to the 26th June. There are more than 1,000 deaths a day! The pandemic continues to rise in large cities and it’s moving towards the municipalities of the interior, affecting and killing mainly workers, mostly black and poor people on the peripheries. The spread of the disease is not done in a democratic way, as the bourgeois media tries to make us believe. The high lethality of COVID-19 and its spread reveal its class and colour character, mostly reaching people who live in precarious conditions in slums and working class neighbourhoods, in large agglomerations, without access to sanitation and running water.

The recent measures to “[plasticise]” social isolation, in fact, broaden the resumption of economic activities – given that many categories have never stopped working in the pandemic – announced by governors and mayors of many cities are against the guidelines of the World Health Organisation and the scientific system. They meet the pressures of business segments, such as commerce and the industrial sector linked to non-essential activities. As it is already happening in some states, the trend is that the numbers continue to increase, even more radically, increasing the rates of infected and dead. The adoption of the lockdown will be inevitable, if there is indeed the objective of fighting the pandemic. Otherwise, the intention of those representing capitalist interests is clearly going to let large contingents of the Brazilian proletariat die.

The political crisis intensified with the resignation of Weintraub from the Ministry of Education, the arrest of Queiroz, a key part of Flávio Bolsonaro’s corrupt scheme, with the deepening of investigations into PSL (Bolsonaro’s former political party) parliamentarians, now counting on the breach of the group’s banking secrecy. In the same vein, investigations into the production and financing of the “Fake News” scheme and its possible links with militias show that the siege is closing in on Bolsonaro and his family.

All of this has caused Bolsonaro’s political isolation to grow rapidly, making him increasingly cornered. Bolsonaro practically does not govern, although he maintains his mandate. He has a large part of the military sector under control and continues to obtain support from portions of his original social bases, such as those who believe the Earth is flat, fascist and militia groups, conservative factions of the middle and upper classes, in addition to popular sectors influenced by certain evangelical churches and Bolsonaro’s demeaning speech, which reverberates along with a depoliticised and reactionary common sense.

The Brazilian political crisis takes place at the same time that Trump’s unpopularity increases, accelerated by the wear and tear caused by the rise of the anti-racist and anti-fascist movement that occupies the streets of the USA and has spread throughout the world, incorporating precarious, democratic and progressive workers. His wear and tear was also accelerated by the disaster in the action of the American government in the face of the Coronavirus pandemic in his country. With the elections in sight, in November, Trump denounced and humiliated Bolsonaro, criticising him – and the government of Sweden – for his neglect in dealing with the pandemic, changing his posture in international relations by pointing to the possibility of dialoguing and negotiating with Maduro, after the fiasco of the attempted invasion of Venezuela and the previous attacks.

Bolsonaro has bet on chaos, denying the expansion of the pandemic and proposing an end to social isolation, refusing to take any effective action by the State that would guarantee broad access to basic income for the more than 50 million workers who are in extremely precarious conditions, without a job or fighting for survival as street vendors, Uber drivers and autonomous workers of delivery services, among others. Not satisfied, he dismissed two health ministers, who ended up clashing with Bolsonaro’s anti-scientific and denialist orientation. His actions in this area contribute to further dismantle the public health system, the “SUS,” whose dismantling had already been promoted by previous governments, in favour of the interests of private companies of the sector.

Bolsonaro has lost the support he had in various entities and [social] organisations. Recent police actions show the relative autonomy of part of the Police, both the Civil and the Federal one. The outbreak of different operations may mean a “green light” given by sections of the bourgeoisie that prefer to detach themselves from the Bolsonaro family and its fascist and militia bases, in order to make the formation of a new government possible, a government that continues to faithfully serve the interests of capital, but with an apparently more rational and palatable face to bourgeois institutions.

The rejection of Bolsonaro was strengthened by the departure of Minister Moro, who represented a good part of the social middle layers mobilised by Operation “Lava-a-Jato” and its anti-corruption and anti-petty content. This wear and tear starts to be present, also, in the popular strata, with each new denunciation of corruption that involves members of the government and the Bolsonaro family, which is shaking their image of “myth”, “honest” and “defender of the family”. The [bizarreness] of Bolsonaro and his ministers, his rudeness and lies, the incompetence of the already dismissed Minister of Education and his flight to the United States, the repeated attacks on the environment, on Science and on the University also contributed to increase the wear and tear. Hence, Bolsonaro also began to use the tactic of approaching the so-called “Centrão” (a group of “physiological” parties which act in the centre of the political spectrum) in the National Congress, in order to obtain parliamentary support that would avoid a possible impeachment process. The appointment of the new Minister of Education, Carlos Decotelli, a black professor with a postdoctoral degree, financier and officer in the Navy reserve, “a technical [staffer]” and apparently not associated with the far-right ideological faction, seems to be part of a new tactic, which aims to make the government more acceptable for the so-called public opinion.

At the same time, the streets once again have echoed the voices of popular organisations and the socialist left, reflecting the dehydration of Bolsonarism and the resumption of the actions of the organised social movement, with the presence of new actors, such as many organised football club fans who demonstrate a democratic and anti-fascist attitude. These are added to the political parties and movements of unions, popular and youth actions mobilised in the defence of democracy, social rights and in opposition to the Bolsonaro government. It is worth noting the presence on the streets of black collectives and anti-racist acts, not only as a sympathetic response to the gigantic demonstrations going on in the United States against the assassination of George Floyd, to police violence and structural racism in that society, but fundamentally as a necessary reaction to the politics of extermination of black youth in Brazil, which has deepened during the pandemic by the actions of the Military Police and state governments, as in Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, where the murders resulting from the violent and repressive official incursions into the proletarian communities continue to occur.

However, despite the advance of popular protests and the growing political isolation of the government, institutions of bourgeois democracy such as the STF and Parliament behave in a corporate manner and seek to take advantage of Bolsonaro’s wear and tear to force a negotiated resignation and obtain advantages, under the banner of the fight against authoritarianism, coup threats and the actions of fascist groups. There is, in the National Congress, a clear conservative majority that reflects well the existing unity within the Brazilian bourgeoisie, which remains cohesive around the program of ultraliberal, privatising reforms, aiming to deepen the agenda for the withdrawal of rights of the working class and dismantling public assets, such as the recent approval of bill 4162, which promotes the privatisation of water services and basic sanitation in Brazil.

From the very first moment, the PCB (Communist Party of Brazil) encouraged the resumption of occupation of the streets against fascism, against racism, in defence of democratic freedoms and composing the unity of action, together with other left political forces and popular organisations, through the movement that embraces the slogan “Fora Bolsonaro” (Down with Bolsonaro). At the same time, we seek to participate in broader spaces in the institutional field in joint actions with parties of the democratic field, as we did in the registration, in Congress, of the popular request for impeachment, signed by hundreds of political and social entities.

We understand that the main banner of struggle at this time is the overthrow of the government of Bolsonaro, Mourão and Guedes, to stop the genocidal policy and the destruction of rights in favour of capital and imperialism. We defend, on an emergency basis, the extension of basic income and the resumption of the Continuous Benefit Benefit, the maintenance of social isolation until the current trend of growth of the pandemic is reversed, the readmission of all workers who have been dismissed, the massive investment of the State in public health structures for the full fight against Coronavirus.

Besides combatting the pandemic, it is time to strengthen the popular opposition movement against the government and its scorched earth policy, through initiatives that deepen its political isolation and are able to stop the attacks of the bourgeoisie and revoke the set of counter-reforms and anti-popular measures, paving the way for the construction of a political alternative in favour of the working class and popular sectors.

We must prepare ourselves to face the new offensive that the bourgeoisie will certainly carry out in the post-pandemic period, with a view to deepening the process of withdrawing social rights, privatisations and the delivery of national wealth. It is necessary to continue denouncing and combatting the ills of capitalism and neoliberal policies, responsible for the resounding failure of the actions of the bourgeois governments to face the pandemic. Only the organisation and mobilisation of formal and informal workers, unemployed and precarious workers in a firm defence of labour and social rights, through full employment, security, guarantee of basic income, a 100 per cent public universal and free health state sector, public investments and the re-[nationalisation] of national services and companies, may point to the resumption of the economy in favour of the interests and needs of the working people, towards the construction of Popular Power and Socialism.

Brazilian Communist Party (PCB)






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