Brazil: Lula Livre, another blow to the Bolsonaro government and the challenges for the left

Lula’s imprisonment was an act of political proscription to prevent him from being elected president in the last elections. An antidemocratic act that we revolutionaries must confront and that is why, from the first moment, we expressed our rejection of his detainment and were critical of the policy of trust and assimilation to the regime of the PT that did not call to face this undemocratic attack in the streets and, once again, did not trust mobilization. Being in favor of and defending Lula’s release does not mean we support his political project. The PT government, with Lula first and Dilma later, was the guarantor of corporate profits. Throughout his government, links with corporations and sectors of power were a constant, corruption and fraudulent businesses were no exception.

The expectations in a workers’ government were diluted with Lula´s clear guideline in favor of corporations and landowners. The mass movement with the youth at the fore, faced off against austerity measures that the government of the PT applied, and that process eroded its base and social support. Thus the PT gave way to the right, first by placing Temer as Dilma´s vice president, which then led to her impeachment and Lula´s imprisonment, which boomeranged and finally led to Bolsonaro´s reactionary and ultra-right-wing government.

With Lula and the PT to fight Bolsonaro?

Many comrades see the urgency of defeating Bolsonaro and his right-wing government and propose forming a front of all the left and progressives, including the PT. We agree that in the struggle in the streets we need to achieve the broadest unity of action and mobilize to defeat Bolsonaro and his attacks, but we reject a common political front with those who are managers of capitalism.

On the one hand because we ratify that the experiences of all “progressive” governments proved to be no solution for the working class and the poor; on the contrary, they are responsible for the existence of the right, extreme right and authoritarian governments such as Bolsonaro, Macri, Lenin Moreno, Maduro, and others. Their refusal to advance toward anti-capitalist measures that confront imperialism and its plans of war against the peoples, generated great disappointment in the masses who had placed confidence in their discourse in favor of the people, sovereignty and independence. Over this fertile ground, the right gained strength by showing itself as a political alternative and took the initiative.

On the other hand, because the strength in mobilization that the masses are demonstrating throughout the world shows that it is not enough to tear some conquests from capitalism, it is necessary to direct that immense energy towards an anti-capitalist and socialist solution, the only alternative to achieve and maintain those achievements.

A new moment

The right and imperialism need to advance against the conquests of our peoples to guarantee their fierce austerity. But they cannot prevent the rise in global mobilization, with strength in Latin America, from sinking their expectations and forcing them to retreat. Rebellions, mass mobilizations, electoral defeats and governmental crises are the marks of this situation, in which the masses are “waking up” in the face of imperialist austerity plans and complicating their objectives. Faced with the pessimism of much of the progressive sectors that predicted a black period of defeat and fascist advance, we see how, in the dynamics of the current class struggle, the right is weakened and loses the initiative, which is taken by the power of mobilization. Lula’s release occurs in this framework.

In the country we learn about new political events every day that show a dynamic of rising crisis in the Bolsonaro government. His anti-democratic and ultra-conservative attempts are constantly faced with more and more social and people´s rejection. Because, ultimately, what generates more and more rejection is the austerity plan that the Bolsonaro government came to apply against the working class and the people. The president tries to control the courts and manage them at will, but once again he in unable to fulfill his plan. The Federal Supreme Court (STF) amended the law and obliges the release of all prisoners who are accused with appealed convictions and have not yet been definitively sentenced. Former President Lula is in that situation, which is why he was released on the afternoon of November 11. Bourgeois justice will never solve the thousands of corruption cases that exist, power does not investigate itself. Only the pressure of the mobilization of the masses can conquer truth and justice in this and all cases. Therefore, if we want to solve corruption cases, we must begin by demanding that a commission independent from the judiciary and political authorities be established to investigate.

For a workers´ and socialist government

We cannot oppose the right with more right. The only political alternative capable of confronting the right and imperialism is the anti-capitalist left. That is why no alternative policy of class reconciliation serves the task of taking away their power and governing for those of us who never rule, the working class. From Alternativa Socialista and the International Socialist League (ISL) we defend and strengthen the PSOL program since its inception, a class based and revolutionary program, a socialist program. Today, more than ever, we invite you to take part in this task.

Veronica O’Kelly