• Impeachment of Rousseff carried out by neoliberalism.
  • The limits of formal democracy.
  • The urgent need to build real democracies.

The constitutional president of Brazil, Dilma Rousseff, has been found guilty of corruption by the Senate and has been definitively relieved of her functions. It must be highlighted that she hasn’t been found guilty of any crime by the legal system.

No coherent evidence of the crimes alleged to have been committed by the accused was presented during the impeachment that started on the 12th of May – the product of a formal democracy, obsessed by rituals and republican formality – to such an extent that the president’s adversaries, who had the right to call on six witnesses to back their accusations about the alleged violation of Budget and Fiscal Responsibility laws, could only present two.

This process of impeachment was led by Michel Temer who was the vice-president of the current government and from the 31st of August took over as the new president until 2018. Since his coming to power in a caretaker role at the beginning of May he immediately started to implement budget cuts, privatisations of public services and the removal of benefits from those most in material need.

This situation in Brazil is part of an increasing domination of Latin America, it is a capitalist ransacking more brutal than the neoliberalism of the 90s.

The US government, the operational face of Brazilian plutocracy, is trying to safeguard its badly-named “backyard” by openly supporting the local right-wing in those countries that have not adjusted to the imperial position.

Before this process in Brazil, in Argentina at the end of last year a reactionary and pro-neoliberal capitalist government, openly helped by a “psychological war” carried out by the hegemonic mass media.

The governments of Venezuela, Bolivia and Ecuador expressed solidarity with Brazil and immediately withdrew their ambassadors but they are suffering from the actions of this anti-democratic strategy that uses different tactics according to the possibilities that the situation provides and the characteristics of the local right-wing. The first antecedents of these practices were the “soft coups” in Honduras and Paraguay.

This manipulation of formal democracy by an oppressive minority is increasingly showing the limits of its development and the urgent need to build real democracies in which the regime in power is really a government of the people, for the people and by the people.

It is necessary that the International Humanist Party gives the strongest and clearest possible signal regarding the need for drastic changes to the schemes of those currently in power. It is urgent to try to start a discussion in all social spheres about the current degree of concentration of economic power and how decision-making is increasingly in fewer and fewer hands.

This power will only be modified by the construction of a real, direct democracy that covers the three powers of the State, the economy and the mass media and that is supported by nonviolent methods of struggle.

World Coordination Team – International Humanist Party

September 2016