Home Today's Paper Most Popular Video Gallery Photo Gallery
Subscription Blog Signin Register
Logo
Monday, December 11, 2017 06:16:23 AM
Follow Us On: Facebook Twitter Twitter Twitter Twitter

Opinion

Political reform: The new buzzword

By
25th-Mar-2015       
Comments
Share your thought
Post a comment »
Read all () »

Erick Vasconcelos :
After the large scale protests throughout Brazil last Sunday, politicians, bureaucrats and the pro-government media are hurrying to talk about "political reform" as an answer to popular dissatisfaction - as opposed to the "coup-supporting" opposition who longs for president Dilma Rousseff's impeachment. Marcelo Zero, for instance, preaches the party line and states that "those who are actually against corruption do not want impeachment, an euphemism for coup d'état, but support political reform" (Brasil 247, March 15).
Despite the different and occasionally reactionary requests of the protesters in the streets, they display the obvious: that Brazil's political and economic decline has become intolerable. The economy is in ruins, real wages fall while unemployment rises. Alongside that, corruption cases surface every day - the largest among them being the bribery scheme by construction companies contracted by Petrobras, which stuffed the coffers of the president's Workers' Party (PT).
According to PT supporters, however, Brazil became Narnia around 2002, when then president Lula played Aslan in a magic wonderland of perpetual progress where any lingering doubt is attacked in hysterical denunciations of the non-believers.
Large sectors of the Brazilian left, ever since PT got in power, have become extreme legalists, opposing any form of organization outside the conventional institutions. These Leninists tend to cry wolf at any disturbance of the order, calling them "coups."
This opportunistic legalism translates into the transformation of political reform into a sacred cow of Brazilian politics.
Obviously, political reform is only an easy answer to alleviate the pressure of the crisis, since no one has yet decided what it actually means. Lula, for example, has stated that it involves "public funding of electoral campaigns" (Época Negócios, March 15). For fellow PT members such as federal deputy Enio Verri ("Reforma política ampla e popular," Brasil 247, March 18), though, it involves a "constitutional assembly to debate and develop a new electoral system," "a thorough and popular reform, in conversation with every sector of society, and which respects the characteristics of a continental country, with its rich and diverse culture." Curiously, while impeachment is seen as coup, rewriting the constitution seems to be well within the acceptable rules of the game.
PT members believe that public funding of electoral campaigns is essential to prevent "private interests," as Zero puts it, from having influence over the political process. Nonsense: The state is but a manifestation of private interests. Public funding has never prevented "private interests" from taking over the state; the state exists to serve those interests.
Former Brazilian president Fernando Collor de Mello, for instance, resigned in 1992 (before he could be impeached) following the corruption scheme set up by his campaign treasurer PC Farias, who was a middleman between the government and large businesses. At the time, private funding was forbidden, but it didn't matter at all to stop corruption.
Corruption debates are frankly irrelevant when we begin to see the state as what it is: a tool of the elite for the economic exploitation of the general population. When we abandon our distorted party lenses, we begin to see that the payment of bribes by construction companies in exchange for Petrobras contracts wasn't anything but expected given our established institutions. The pro-government "protests" from last Friday (13), anticipating the opposition movements from Sunday and organized by the Unified Workers' Central (CUT), argued that "Petrobras is the property of Brazilians!" It isn't, it has never been, and it won't ever be.
 "Public funding of electoral campaigns," on the other hand, will result in a party system ever more monopolized where money flows upwards to established politicians. And, obviously, that won't stop "private interests" from interfering with politics.
Government supporters will never accept this simple fact because, for the PT establishment, politicians are pure angels corrupted by private money. As Oscar Wilde would put it, they can resist anything but temptation.

Tariff
Add Rate

News Archive

Inside The New Nation

International »

Chinese billionaire-in-exile wants regime change in Beijing


AFP, New York :Billionaire Guo Wengui, who is seeking asylum in the United States after accusing officials in his native China of corruption, wants "a change of the regime" in Beijing and the introduction of democracy in the world's most populous country."I want to try and to have rule of ...

Editorial »

Aman harvest has no effect on rice market


PASSING the Aman harvest, rice price has not come down as government leaders earlier said and rather gone up to the dismay of the common people all over the country. Though farmers are happy with higher price; although they have suffered production loss at many places due to late receding ...

Cricket »

Players of Comilla Victorians celebrating after dismissal of Chris Gayle of Rangpur Riders during the Qualifier-2 match of the AKS Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) Twenty20 Cricket between Comilla Victorians and Rangpur Riders at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in the city's Mirpur on Sunday.


Sports »

Members of Rongdhanu RDS, the runners-up of the Hedayet Hossain Memorial Night Cricket Tournament pose for a photo session at Bangladesh Ground in Old Dhaka recently.


Entertainment »

Gauhar makes to sexiest Asian list for fourth consecutive time


For the fourth consecutive year, Bollywood actress and model Gauhar Khan has been voted to the top 10 list of ‘50 Sexiest Asian Women list’ in the world. It is an annual UK poll, which has been released in London recently. The actress, who is known for her choice of ...

City »

Convenor of Nagorik Oikya Mahmudur Rahman Manna speaking at a discussion organised by 'Mayer Dak, a social organisation at the Jatiya Press Club on Sunday with a call to bring back forced disappeared people to their mothers' laps.


International »

Ex-Fox news anchor Huddy claims Trump kissed her


Huff Post :A former Fox News anchorwoman who accused Bill O'Reilly of sexually harassing her in 2011 is now claiming that Donald Trump kissed her on the lips in an elevator.Juliet Huddy said Thursday morning on the "Mornin!!! With Bill Schulz" podcast (which has a paywall) that it happened around ...

Editorial »

Dust pollution takes toll in cities’ air


PRESENCE of dust and pollution in the air of our cities has reached alarming levels. It's happening mainly due to chaotic construction works, poor management and protracted traffic jams. According to Air Quality Index Report of the Department of Environment's (DoE) "Clean Air and Sustainable Project" earlier this month, air ...

Sports »

Chanchal emerges unbeaten champion in Blitz Chess Championship


BSS, Dhaka  :Chanchal Kumar Ghosh emerged as unbeaten champion in the Blitz Chess Championship with 6.5 points after the 7th round game on Friday at E Commerce Club hall room in Uttara. Five players finished in second to sixth position with 5.5 points after the tie breaking system. They are ...

Sports »

First-place Nao Kodaira (center) of Japan stands with second-place Lee Sang-hwa (left) of South Korea and third-place Arisa Go (right) of Japan after the women's 500 meters at a World Cup speedskating event Friday in Kearns, Utah.


Entertainment »

Akshay to back out of Gulshan Kumar's biopic?


 Akshay Kumar, who has films like Padman and 2.0 lined up for 2018, has created a stir after rumors of him stepping out of the film titled Mogul came to the forefront. Mogul is a biopic on the creator of T-series, Gulshan Kumar. According to the rumors, Akshay Kumar and ...

City »

BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, among others, at a discussion organised on the occasion of 10th founding anniversary of Bangladesh Kalyan Party at the Jatiya Press Club on Saturday.


Editorial »

Mysterious theft of fertiliser from Govt depots


DESPITE fertile land loss, inclement weather and depleting irrigation water, Bangladesh's agriculture keeps contributing a fifth of the GDP each year. Along with other factors, government's policy support in the form of fertiliser subsidy plays a big part here. But misappropriation of the key agro input such as fertiliser by ...

City »

`National Committee for the Implementation of Prime Minister`s Approved Gazetted Salaries` formed a human chain in front of the Jatiya Press Club on Friday to meet its demands.


.

Entertainment »

Are Virat and Anushka getting hitched?


Over the past few days, there are some reports doing the rounds that ace cricketer Virat Kohli and Bollywood starlet Anushka Sharma are getting married. According to these reports, both these love-birds will tie the knot in Italy.  The manager of Anushka has already slammed these reports by saying these ...

 
Items that you save may be read at any time on your computer, iPad, iPhone or Android devices.
 
Are you new to our website? Do you have already an account at our website?
Create An Account Log in here
Email this news to a friend or like someone
Email:
Write a comment to this news