William J. Mello and Altemar da Costa Muniz at nonsite:
The political farce perpetrated against the Brazilian people on Sunday, April 17, when the country’s national congress approved the impeachment of President Dilma Rousseff (PT—Partido dos Trabalhadores/Workers Party) is a critical moment in an ongoing class war against the left, labor and the poor. Instead of an exercise in democratic political sovereignty, as the center-right coalition would prefer the rest of the world believe, the congressional vote is a de-facto political coup. The amalgam of rightwing /neoliberal free marketers, with the support of the media, blatantly attacked basic democratic rule of law, as well as the doctrine of “innocent until proven guilty.” Most of all, there is no evidence that a crime was ever committed. The entire process was marked by the manipulation of legal procedures. This is just a small illustration of how far Brazil’s neoliberal representatives are willing to go to undermine popular democracy and working-class power.
The pathetic statements made by rightwing congressmen as they justified their votes in favor of impeachment—“for god, country and family” is just one of the more bizarre (to say the least) justifications too inane to repeat—are scarily similar to right-wing mobilizations of the past, when a U.S. backed military coup seized power in 1964. The current “crisis” in Brazil represents long-term tensions between the interests of important financial sectors (both in the US and Brazil) aligned with right-wing free marketeers and the neoliberal “left”2 all united by the objective of putting an end to the expansive socioeconomic and political policies implemented over the past 13 years, policies that have moved millions of Brazilians out of historical abject poverty while providing greater inclusion for working class organizations in the political decision making process.