by Pepe Escobar for Russia Today
Forget about hanging chads, as in Florida 2000. This is a day that will live in infamy all across the Global South – when what was one of its most dynamic democracies veered into a plutocratic regime, under a flimsy parliamentary/judicial veneer, with legal and constitutional guarantees now at the mercy of lowly comprador elites.
After the proverbial marathon, the Brazilian Senate voted 55-22 to put President Dilma Rousseff on trial for “crimes of responsibility” – related to alleged window dressing of the government’s budget.
This is the culmination of a drawn-out process that started even before Rousseff won re-election in late 2014 with over 54 million votes. I have described the bunch of perpetrators of what Brazilian creativity has termed ‘golpeachment’ (a mix of coup – “golpe” in Portuguese – and impeachment) as Hybrid War hyenas.
Sophisticated golpeachment – supported by what amounts to an Electoral Inquisition College – has propelled Hybrid War to whole new levels.
Hybrid War as applied to Brazil exhibited classic elements of a color revolution. Of course there was no need for no-fly zones or humanitarian imperialism to “protect human rights” – not to mention provoking a civil war. But considering the high resistance level of the victim state, where civil society is very dynamic, Hybrid War designers in this case bet on a mix of capitulation – and betrayal – of local elites, mixed with “peaceful protests” and a relentless mainstream media campaign. Call it ‘Civil War Light.’
That carried with it a fabulous cost-benefit ratio. Now the (immensely corrupt) Brazilian political system and the current executive/legislative/judiciary/mainstream media alignment can be used by the usual suspects for their geopolitical agenda.
Welcome to regime change light – politics, in a nutshell – as war by other means on the BRICS. A new software, a new operating system. Carrying a pathetic corollary; if the US is the Empire of Chaos, Brazil has now gloriously reached the status of Sub-Empire of Scoundrels.
Rousseff may be accused of serious economic mismanagement, and of being incapable of political articulation among the shark pool that is (immensely corrupt) Brazilian politics. But she is not corrupt. She made a serious mistake in fighting inflation, allowing interest rates to rise to an unsustainable level; so demand in Brazil dramatically dropped, and recession became the norm. She is the (convenient) scapegoat for Brazil’s recession.
She certainly may be blamed for not having a Plan B to fight the global recession. Brazil essentially works on two pillars; commodity exports and local companies relying on the teats of the state. Infrastructure in general is dismal – adding to what is described as the “Brazilian cost” of doing business. With the commodity slump, state funds dwindled and everything was paralyzed – credit, investment, consumption.
The pretext for Rousseff’s impeachment – allegedly transferring loans from public banks to the Treasury in order to disguise the size of Brazil’s fiscal deficit – is flimsy at best. Every administration in the West does it – and that includes Clinton’s, Bush’s and Obama’s.
The Operation Car Wash investigation, dragging on for two years now, was supposed to uncover corruption in the Brazilian political system – as in the collusion of oil giant Petrobras executives, Brazilian construction companies, and political campaign financing. Car Wash has nothing to do with the golpeachment drive. Yet these have been two parallel highways converging to one destination: the criminalization of the Workers’ Party, and the definitive – if possible – political assassination of Rousseff and her mentor, former President Lula.
When golpeachment reached the lower house of Congress – an appalling spectacle – Rousseff was eviscerated by Hybrid War hyenas of the BBC variety; “BBC,” in English, stands for “bullet,”“bible” and “cattle,” where “bullet” refers to the weapons and private security industry, “bible” to pastors and evangelical fanatics, and “cattle” to the powerful agribusiness lobby.
The “BBC” hyenas are members of almost all Brazilian political parties, paperboys for major corporations, and – last but not least – corruption stalwarts. They all benefited from millionaire political campaigning. The whole Car Wash investigation ultimately revolves around campaign financing, which in Brazil, unlike the US with its legalized lobbies, is a Tarantino-worthy Wild West.
The Brazilian Senate is not exactly an “upper” – as in more polished – house. Eighty percent of members are white men – in a country where miscegenation rules. A staggering 58 percent is under criminal investigation – linked to Car Wash. Sixty percent hail from political dynasties. And 13 percent – as alternates – were not elected at all. Among those favoring impeachment, 30 out of 49 are in trouble with the law. Charges include mostly money laundering, financial crimes and outright corruption. Renan Calheiros, the president of the Senate – who oversaw today’s impeachment vote – is the target of no fewer than nine separate money laundering/corruption Car Wash lines of investigation, plus another two criminal probes.
Meet the three Banana Republic amigos
Rousseff is now suspended for a maximum 180 days while a Senate committee decides whether to impeach her for good. Enter President-in-Waiting Michel Temer – a dodgy, shady operator – who has been branded a “usurper” by Rousseff. And usurper this provincial Brutus certainly is – according to his own words. On March 30 last year, he was tweeting that, “Impeachment is unthinkable, it would create an institutional crisis. There is no judicial or political basis for it.”
His administration is born with the original sin of being illegal and massively unpopular; his approval rating floats between an epic 1 percent and 2 percent. He was already fined last week for violating campaign finance limits. And, predictably, he’s drowning in a corruption swamp – named in two Car Wash plea bargains and accused of being part of an illegal scheme of ethanol buying; he may become ineligible for the next eight years. Almost 60 percent of Brazilians also want him impeached – on the same charges leveled against Rousseff.
Brutus 1 (Temer) would not bask in the glow of his 15 minutes of fame without the shenanigans of Brutus 2 (Brazil’s number one crook, former speaker of the lower house Eduardo Cunha, facing charges of bribery and perjury, holder of illegal Swiss accounts, and now finally sidelined by the Supreme Court). It was Brutus 2 who fast-tracked impeachment as pure vengeance; the Workers’ Party did not cover his back as he was facing a tsunami of corruption charges. Brutus 2 used all his vast powers – he runs a campaign financing scam inside Congress – to obstruct the Car Wash investigation. His replacement, the interim speaker, is also under investigation for bribery.
So meet Temer, Cunha, Calheiros; these three amigos are the true stars of the Banana Republic of Scoundrels/Crooks.
As if the Supreme Court would be rascal-free. Judge Gilmar Mendes, for instance, is a lowly plutocrat vassal. When an attorney for the government entered a motion to suspend impeachment, he quipped, “Ah, they can go to heaven, to the Pope, or to hell.” Another pompous judge received a request to sideline Cunha as early as December 2015. He only examined the request over four months later, when the whole golpeachment scam was in its decisive phase. And still he argued, “there’s no proof Cunha contaminated the impeachment process.”
Finally, complementing the whole scam, we find Brazilian mainstream media, with the toxic Globo media empire – which lavishly profited from the 1964 military coup – at the forefront.
All hail the neoliberal restoration
Wall Street – as well as the City of London – could not hide its excitement with golpeachment, believing Brutus 1 Temer will be an economic upgrade. Arguably, he might dare to tweak Brazil’s Kafkaesque tax code and do something about the enormous hole in the pension system. But what that mythical entity – the “markets” – and myriad “investors” are salivating about is the prospect of fabulous rates of return in a reopened-for-speculation Brazil. The Brutus 1 game will be a neoliberal feast, actually a restoration, with no popular representation whatsoever.
The golpeachment gang gets really incensed when they are identified as coup plotters. Still, they could not give a damn about the OAS, Mercosur, Unasur – all of them condemned the coup – not to mention the Holy Grail: the BRICS. Under Brutus 1, the Foreign Ministry, to be led by a sore loser senator, is bound to sink Brazil’s key role in BRICS cooperation, to the benefit of Exceptionalistan.
All one needs to know is that neither Nobel Peace Prize-winner Barack “kill list” Obama nor Queen of Chaos Hillary “We came, we saw, he died” Clinton condemned the ongoing regime change light/golpeachment. That’s predictable, considering Exceptionalistan’s NSA spied on Petrobras and Dilma Rousseff personally – the genesis of what would develop as the Car Wash investigation.
White House spokesman Josh Earnest limited himself to the proverbial platitudes: “challenging moment”; “trust in Brazilian democratic institutions”; or even “mature democracy.” Yet he added, significantly, that Brazil is “under scrutiny.”
Of course, the current stage of a very sophisticated Hybrid War strategy has been accomplished. But there are countless cliffhangers ahead. The Car Wash investigation – currently in slow motion – will pick up speed as a rash of dodgy plea bargains is already in store to create the conditions to criminalize for good not only Dilma Rousseff but the key piece in the chessboard: Lula.
Game over? Not so fast. The anti-golpeachment front does have a strategy: to imprint especially in “deep Brazil,” the vast masses of the working poor, the notion of illegality; to rebuild Rousseff’s image as the victim of a profound injustice; to re-energize the progressive political front; to make sure the Brutus 1 government will fail; and to create the conditions for the man who will come in from the cold to win the 2018 presidential elections.
Brazilian House of Cards? Bets could be made this may even end up as Anaconda, with Lula immobilizing the Hybrid War hyenas in a cobra clutch.
A sad day for Brazil. The problem with Latin America is it has never ceased to be colonial. A minority of whites/almost whites regards their respective countries as colonial estates. The indigenous and mixed peoples constitute the poorest strata in these countries. Because the problem is ethnic/racial, I fear it will take a long, long time to go away. The solution – whatever it may be – will have to go beyond traditional progressive/socialistic solutions.
” beyond traditional progressive/socialistic solutions.”
Chavez was such a leader, he was a strong personality, and lifted Venezuela to a world middle-income society. But he was removed by (some say induced) cancer..
Socialism- The end game- http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-05-13/scenes-venezuela-apocalypse-countless-wounded-after-5000-loot-supermarket-looking-fo
When do socialists accept responsibility for their own policy’s and stop trying to find a “bogey man” who is the cause of all their ills ( cancer ? ).
Chavez was a patriot first. He made huge trade deals with China, planned new railways etc. Zerohedge is a typical Yankee perspective, where socialism is a swear word, and all named socialists are lower forms of life. Of course they ignore that the American middle class was built on socialism (see how America was electrified, how WW2 was won).
Chavez policies lifted Venezuela from 14k to 18k GDP/PPP.
as well, capitalism is not suitable to overcome the deep deficiencies a great percentage of the population suffers in third world economies, and certainly suffered in Venezuela for many years until Chavez took care of it. Capitalism is only suitable for the 1% to become more and more rich.
And what is its GDP now ? It’s always somebody else’s fault, nefarious entity’s are the reason that Socialism always fails. It’s never that Socialism is a deficient political and economic philosophy. I would suggest you read Orwells “Animal Farm”. Human nature is very predictable. Also Robespierre would be a good read to see how Socialists and Socialism are so predictable and always produce the same results.
Finding a culprit is actually the result of an analysis, something you have failed to deliver so far.
Capitalism is psychopathy in action, of which you are a lowly example, and your namesake a viciously large one. It is predicated on greed and visceral hatred of others.
Capitalism is colossal failure and morally bankrupt. Dependent on war exploitation to feed the beast. Not sustainable. Brazil and other countries are the victims of economic warfare. The next disaster will be America whose wealth and power is based totally on the petrodollar ,
Sounds like Venezuela you are talking about there. Always looking for the bogey man to blame. Why don’t Socialists man up and accept responsibility for their own actions.
“Zerohedge is a typical Yankee perspective, where socialism is a swear word, and all named socialists are lower forms of life. Of course they ignore that the American middle class was built on socialism…”
These words need to be inscribed in front of schools, courthouses, everywhere in the country. Not to mention the fact that the USA was built on slavery! “King Cotton” was the bubble of the 1800’s, and it couldn’t have happened without slave labor and money-printing banks to finance slave holders… slaves were not cheap. ZH is often essential reading but you have to see through more than a century of American conditioning. Thank you for hitting an important nail right on the head!
Here is the railway project that you waxed about. Who is responsible for this fiasco? Where is the bogey man who has derailed ( pun intended ) this grand project ?
I’m not gonna defend the railway project, it was just an example. America infrastructure was recently rated as poor (d+) by the American society of civil engineering. Is that an argument for any -ism ? No. On Chavez: he brought trade with China from 200 million to 16,000 million per year. Hardly a “socialist” move.
Once again Robespierre would be a good case history to learn from. Socialists just keep repeating the same mistakes over and over again and look for a ” bogey man ” to blame for their failures.
Anonymous on May 14, 2016 wrote:
“Because the problem is ethnic/racial, I fear it will take a long, long time to go away.”
No, the problem in Brazil is NOT ethnic/racial.
Obviously, there is racism in Brazil, just like in any heterogenous country.
I’d say this problem is Brazil is actually less pronounced than in many other parts of the world.
47% of the people are whites and 43% mixed(brown), with the remainder being blacks, indians and asians.
That means the vast majority of the whites are clearly not part of the elite, the 1%.
In fact, in the areas of Brazil that saw the large scale european immigration of the 19th and first half of the 20th centuries, the south and parts of the southeastern regions, it is very common to see very poor whites.
As a matter of fact, I have seen poor whites even in the northeast.
To illustrate the point, the modest life of these German-Brazilians in a south-eastern state:
Our elite, however, is certainly one of the worst to be found anywhere in the world. Extremely greedy, uncouth, unpatriotic but always arrogant.
To make matters worse, we have a stupid middle class, which is large, exploited by the 1%, but oblivious to it, a middle class that ignorantly fails to understand that it, too, is part of the “working” class, and that its interests absolutely do NOT lie with those of the elite.
As a member of this class, I’m appalled by how its members allow themselves to be used as pawns by the elite, perhaps in the vain hope that they, one day, will be part of the elite. Poor fools.
In this coup, the middle class has been instrumental, used as pawns, as sheeple, by the elite, in street protests, through which the 1% sort of legitimized the coup.
This entire process is the same as Kiev, Syria, Libya and others, the only difference is the lack of organized violent opposition to the sitting government of the President. This will change within days if not hours and the innocents, and not so innocents, will begin to die, all of which will be laid at the feet of President Dilma.
The coup is an established fact and nothing will change that fact. Langley would rather see Brazil dissolve in to chaos and violence for years rather than see the country ally itself with BRICS and/or Russia in any way no matter how slight. The deaths of hundreds or thousands to accomplish it’s goals means nothing to Langley, witness Yugoslavia, Gruzya, Libya, Egypt and Syria.
There will be more of these coups or attempted coups in the months ahead, mark my words.
Author, Never The Last One https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00ZGCY8KK
There’s a man from Brazil living where I do, creating a tropical food forest. No wonder he left the Amazon. Btw, isn’t Dilma an Amazon mighty fine womam? Takes a woman’s rants I guess to take down the Man’s pressed pants.
I love the writing and it rewrote my thoughts. I thought Washington was more to blame but seems Brazil doesn’t take a back seat in the corruption car. Auslander kind of corrected the record but I still don’t know who’s Tweedle Dee and who’s Tweedle Dumb in the Washing Brazil tango.
Is this a nightmare or just a bad dream? I’m doing a silent scream for help before I go to sleep in Seatle like the silence of a lamb in battle.
“What can I say about Claudette?
She could be happily married
Or running a whore house in Buenos Aires”
This is what awaita Russia.
Just wait and watch
WikiLeaks Reveal Brazil’s New Coup President Is US Informant
TELESUR, 13 May 2016:
“… Whistleblower website WikiLeaks described the Senate-imposed President of Brazil Michel Temer as a “U.S. Embassy informant” in a tweet and provided two links where Temer’s candid thoughts on Brazilian politics serve as the basis for a report by the U.S. embassy in Brazil.
The cable from Jan. 11, 2006, states that Temer met with embassy officials on Jan. 9, 2006 to give his assessment of Brazil’s political landscape ahead of the 2006 general election that saw Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva reelected to the presidency.
How come nobody asks for a trial for treason and forbids him as President ?????
Too hard for me to understand…
A few comments.
“She made a serious mistake in fighting inflation, allowing interest rates to rise to an unsustainable level; so demand in Brazil dramatically dropped, and recession became the norm. She is the (convenient) scapegoat for Brazil’s recession.”
Preventing inflation of the currency is exactly the correct step to take. There is no reason for calling more and more currency into existence. She made no mistake if she was indeed trying to stop this from occurring. Of course, the bankers would not be well pleased. Unhappy also would be the legions of leaches that gain wealth at the expense of everyone else by the inflation process.
“The pretext for Rousseff’s impeachment – allegedly transferring loans from public banks to the Treasury in order to disguise the size of Brazil’s fiscal deficit – is flimsy at best. Every administration in the West does it – and that includes Clinton’s, Bush’s and Obama’s.”
Here she committed a dishonest fraud. It is dishonest to try to hide the magnitude of the deficit. In the case of Brazil it is growing mightily. The debt is already vast and each year of deficit grows it further. Economically the country is walking dead. The correct step for her to have taken would have been to own up to the debt and honestly state how much it is (including off-book and unfunded liabilities). Then she would have needed to explain why the Brazilian government, which she headed, was spending the Brazilian people, alive and yet to be born, into perdition. If she really did give a toss about the future of the people she’d have balanced that budget and started getting rid of debt as priority one.
The fact that every government in the West is dishonest in revealing how dangerous its deficit, debt and unfunded liabilities situation actually is does not excuse the act. It is fraudulent. Interestingly, that the President is about to be impeached for it demonstrates that it is indeed considered a wrong in Brazil. Does this set a precedent internationally? Any Western governments actively supporting the impeachment could be held to a similar standard at some point. Once the genie is out of the bottle…
What I can’t quite work out here is – is this purely “local”?
Was it instigated, paid for, advised on and carried out with advice and support and direction and bribery, purely by locals. Purely by Brazilian corrupt wealth and criminal, who have watched the US and decided “that’s a neat idea”.
Or –was it the US itself behind it. Partly because the US has long believed it has a right to run the Andean Nations as it’s own back yard, and partly as a bullet fired at the BRICS intuitive?
Or a bit of both?
Sorry, but to even for a moment think that this is “purely local” would be absolutely preposterous. The name of the game is geopolitics, world domination. The subject of our discussions at Saker’s.
Lula will get his bak. The loosing exceptionalistan the empire of caos is on its way out, they know it their monetary ponzi scheme is dead. As far as i can see the anglo -zionist are on their last legs hence the multi pronged approach to their hybrid war Russia .Iran , China then their already destabliused children Iraq, Libya and Syria and r presently working on Lebanon. At present their r trying to lay charges against Kirchner in Argentina cause they know that next election cycle hell will ffreeze over if Macri thinks he will stay in power. They r crippling Venezuelan democrocy to the point of no return . Pure vile and evil their day will come just like when the red army demolished the fascist animals in the second world war. Their ponzi fractional banking system is dead just not barried. The petro dollar is dead but not barried hence it looks like New York, London/ anglo-zionist/ ashkanazi-khazarian mafia is going to find it harder and harder to push their one world government and USA emperium hegemonic plot to an inevitable end.Yesterdays news gets wrapped in todays fish.
“… the Anglo-Zionists are on their last legs …”
Yes, they are on their last legs. Except that those last legs, in their last violent spasms, are going to serve them still quite a while, many, many decades to come, perhaps even a century… And in the meantime they can – and will – do a lot of damage to many. Hope someone finds quickly a good way to accelerate that. (The only obvious efficient catalyst would be a global war … but needless to mention its global “downside”.)
Sad but didn’t they see this coming? This was like watching a slow motion train wreck.
The great Millôr Fernandes, of Pasquim fame, would have termed this coup as ‘Golpe dos Côrnos’. Unbelievable.
Dilma herself set the fire on those votes when just a few days after reelection she decided to do exactly the opposite of what she had said she would do if reelected. She turned her back on those who voted for her when she put a plutocrat’s henchman (Joaquim Levy) as minister of finace, when she decided to cut worker’s rights and to foster privatization, when she hid the downturn of the social and economical indicators, in short, when she started doing very the same things she accused her opponents of doing.
You R generally right in your criticism of Dilma’s post-election policies, though this was done largely to try and apease the coup operatives.
At any rate, it WAS a coup and has left the country in the hands of the most disgusting scum/sellouts possible.
Democracy has been again disrupted in the country and might as well be dead, RIP.
Pepe always has a way of making the most complex situations sound so simple and understandable.
mis·ceg·e·na·tion – /miˌsejəˈnāSHən,ˌmisəjə-/
the interbreeding of people considered to be of different racial types.
lesson to be learnt by the whole world. Vote your leadres in…you can only remove her if you vote herself out..there should not be any other way….cancel all this bullshit impeachment/no confidence vote processes…all undemocratic processes. If we vote her in but we allow a few people in congress to remove her when its suits them .. is very undemocratic and its crazy…think about this…the vote of a few nuts in congress nullifies our choice and the election process??? somethin must be wrong!!!. They should change the consititution and plug the holes in the process not to allow this sort of thing to occur again.
“Vote your leadres in…you can only remove her if you vote herself out..there should not be any other way etc”
OK. So let us take a look at how things stand.
The people voted the President in as the representative of the people. The people voted the senators in as the representatives of the people. The president hid the true state of the government’s financial affairs from the people. She is dishonest. The Senators hid the true state of the government’s financial affairs from the people. They are dishonest. They are all representatives of the people. Everyone got voted in to represent the people. So that is what they are all doing -representing the people who voted them in. AOK so far, except for the dishonest part of it. Surely that is troubling- just a teeny amount even? Turns out the dishonesty part is not a new characteristic. Who’d have guessed?
Now it would appear that some of the representatives of the people want to see the back of another representative of the people. They are busy representing the interests of those they represent with the concerns they express. Since the President misrepresented the government’s state of financial affairs to the people, she couldn’t be representing the people, they claim. She is misrepresenting them. That claim may well be correct, unless it is the case that the people wanted to be represented by being misled by their presidential representative misrepresenting them. Of course, the President claims that it is these other representatives of the people (the ones who are trying to get rid of her) who are misleading the people and hence they are misrepresenting the people they are meant to be representing. She may well be correct, unless it is the case that the people wanted to be represented by being misled by these other representatives misrepresenting them.
It could indeed be that everyone is happy to be misled and all are well represented by having a situation completely misrepresented to them by their representatives. On the other hand it could well be that by being misled by the representatives of the people they (the people) are being misrepresented (truly). No matter. Just keep voting for representatives of the people. That’ll solve everything. After all, everyone gets represented one way of the other.
Paraphrasing Homer Simpson, “Democracy, the cause and solution to all of life’s problems.”
Ain’t it grand!
Dilma has never impressed me as “a leader”, with or without corruption.
No connection with the military? Doesn’t she know that she deals with “criminals” first of all in the country and then outside? Where is her “plan B”? Has she ever heard of “preventive strike” even in politics? Does she “believe” in the “love and faith” of the Brazilian people?
There is no doubt in my mind that inside and outside forces in Brazil have used her lack of strength and her naïve nature to create the coup. Bad days ahead for the common people!!
But the people have voted! they are getting what they voted for good and hard!
Clearly a coup d’état.
It’s not plutocracy, in reality it’s organized crime.
It is a dishonest article.
1) I quote “The pretext for Rousseff’s impeachment – allegedly transferring loans from public banks to the Treasury in order to disguise the size of Brazil’s fiscal deficit – is flimsy at best. Every administration in the West does it – and that includes Clinton’s, Bush’s and Obama’s.”
There is another way to look at it: this “transfer” was not disclosed to voters and will result in additional taxes for them. So we can qualify it as “theft”, not just mismanagement. In the billions. Whether this transfer was done with a social purpose does not matter. It is true that Western administrations also do that, but that does not make it any more moral. Actually, if anything it shows that the Brazilian democracy is working better than other Western democracies, for its leaders are (sometimes) held accountable for lying to voters about their tax liabilities. I have a very good example in my own country, France, where in order to fulfill the public deficit criteria of the Maastricht treaty, all the debt of the national electrical company was deconsolidated. Try 1/100th of that as an accountant, and see what happens to you.
2) The author calls the impeachment a coup. But is the impeachment part of the constitution ? The answer is yes, the author’s claim is thus invalid.
3) The author claims that 58m voters chose D. Rousseff, thus the impeachment is illegal.
But the way democracy works in Brazil is that the majority rules, so if she has 59m voters against her, it’s legal.
I sure hope socialism isn’t the only opponent to imperialism.
Yes, Chavez was a fine leader. As was Gaddafi.
But to rely only on persons, a “Great Man or Woman on a White Horse” is not wise.
Movements are needed. But movements with a very sharp edge, guided by an ideology.
Of course, as other posts have noted, the usual suspects would love chaos to prevail in Brazil.
Just as in Iraq, Syria, Libya, etc.
In order to avoid such a disaster, a modicum of very precise targeting is called for. Sooner rather than later. Pigs who love their own selves so much they would betray everyone else for money would no doubt run away as fast as they could to avoid death.