Politics

Political hope for Brazil

After 7 years, Brazil is finally going through the resolution of one of its major political scandals of all time, “the Mensalão”. Or in english, something close to “the big monthly allowance scheme”. A scheme where public funds were used to buy political support and nearly caused the Lula administration to collapse.
Maybe, we can compare it to the magnitude of the “Watergate” scandal in the US. Not on the simalirity or severeness of the crime, but on the impression of it on the national consciousness. From now on, in Brazil, every corruption case will be nicknamed “blablabla-mensalão”.

What is different this time, is that Brazil’s Supreme Court has upheld jail terms against most of the politicians, businessmen and bankers convicted in the country’s biggest corruption trial, including Brazil former chief-of-staff José Dirceu.
This is an unthinkable outcome for a country used to let corrupt politicians go unpunished, and it’s certainly a historic moment for the Brazilian legal system and for the stability of institutions in Brazil.

That bring us some hope.
Our infrastructure problems on highways, roads, rails, ports, that brings such a burden on Brazil’s agriculture competitiveness, are all related to this kind of political immorality. If it somehow, someday, ends…or lessen…what a fantastical country this would be.

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12:15pm update
Now some interesting “Mensalão” recent facts that might bring you despair:
1) Where was José Dirceu, ex chief of staff, as Brazil’s high court was deciding he would start jail term? On the beach
2) Lula himself was not implicated in the case and has denied any knowledge of the scheme. (Of course, how could he possible know that !? )
3) Mr Genoino, convicted and former party president, is proud of himself. He shouted “Long live the PT!” to a group of supporters before entering the Federal Police headquarters in Sao Paulo to hand himself over.
4) Genoino and Dirceu made some mysterious Bolshevik clenched-fist salute (pic) before handing themselves.
12:20pm update
5) Lula downplayed the accusations, saying the PT had behaved in the same way as other parties. (what is… true…)
6) Brazilian state-run bank Banco do Brasil, Henrique Pizzolato, fled the country to avoid jail.
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