[Marxism] Marxism in Brazil
suneagle79 at yahoo.com
Tue Feb 28 12:25:36 MST 2012
The Party of Socialism and Liberty got off to a very promising start, with its presidential candidate winning some six million votes in the first round its first time out in the polls. But, as you note, it too has been reduced to the one-percent vote in presidential elections and less than a handful of parliamentary seats. Funny, I remember the bikini-clad candidates and canvassers for the once-Maoist Communist Party of Brazil campaigning in Ipanema. They catch your eyes, and therefore votes. The Brazilian Communist Party of Niemeyer (admirable though he may be) is beneath contempt, since it's little more than a "didn't we once have it all" nostalgic party; in other words it isn't even in the same stadium with Refondazione Comunista in Italy, whatever it is calling itself these days.
The Landless Movement-MST is still militant, but having endorsed Lula twice for president, without any payoff in return, it does not seem to have the potential to grow beyond a social movement into a national political organization. (Not that I am recommending they undertake party-building.) The question Brazilian leftists used to ask themselves was "Where do we want to take the PT?" Today it seems that the more urgent question, to quote The Clash, is "What are we going to do now?"
Though I think that the most important task of progressive people in the world today is to fight against war, I think also that co-listers know that, so I would like to write about less known subjects, such as Marxism in Brazil.
Thank you, comrade/Obrigado, companheiro for the update. I was in Brazil in 1989-1990, and even attended a neighborhood meeting in Laranjeiras, Rio de Janeiro, with Roberto Freire, then head of the defunct Brazilian Communist Party, now turned the Popular Socialisr Party. Roberto, as everyone called him, received one million votes in the presidential elections that year, "after the fall of the Berlin Wall", as bougeois commentators noted, dripping with irony. (Although, to be fair, that amounted to only one-percent of the total votes cast.) The funny thing is that once the party dumped all pretences to socialism it shrank to a small dwarf star, much like the Italian PCI becoming the Party of the Democratic Left then the Democrat Party and then oblivion.
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