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Jair Bolsonaro

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"What is golden shower?", tweeted President Bolsonaro on March 6, 2019.
It doesn't stop
at the water's edge

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Jair Messias Bolsonaro (1955–) is a morally bankrupt Brazilian nut job politician worshipped by the Brazilian right. A former congressman and the current president of Brazil,[1] Bolsonaro is considered one of the most evil right-wing politicians on the planet within the 21st century. He longs for the good old days of military dictatorship[2] and supports "Christian" and family values. A member of the right-wing grouping in the Brazilian Congress informally known as the Bullets, Beef and Bible Caucus,[3] he has been labeled the "tropical Trump",[1] and has been compared to other such wonderful figures as the Philippines' Rodrigo Duterte and Egypt's Abdel Fattah el-Sisi. Still he leans even further right than Trump in certain aspects.[4] His son Eduardo is also a congress member with similarly cuddly politics and is being touted to become Brazil's ambassador in the USA[5].

Bolsonaro is one of the main opponents of socialism, communism, leftism, marxism, bolivarianism, etc. and also the current archenemy of common sense, common decency, and the lungs of the planet.

Controversies[edit]

Jair Bolsonaro is well known for his polemical stands on several topics, such as minorities, LGBT population and crime. Besides being an admirer of the Brazilian military regime, in 1993 he openly supported Peruvian dictator Alberto Fujimori,[6] who has been charged with several crimes ranging from corruption to supporting forced sterilization programs and even genocide.[7] Later, in 1999, he openly supported the assassination of several people, including the then Brazilian president, Fernando Henrique Cardoso.[8] Several other declarations make him a homophobe, misogynist and racist to non-fashy people.

Presidential proposals[edit]

Among his presidential proposals are closing unnecessary ministries (such as the Ministry of Finance, which keeps the government in control of the economy, the Ministry of Defense, which keep the military subordinate to politics, and folding the Ministry of the Environment into the Ministry of Agriculture, in order to put an end to its "fines industry"), supporting free markets and entrepreneurship, opposing an alleged "biased political education in public schools" (where teachers, supposedly, indoctrinate children into socialism, as he and many of his supporters on the right claim), and relaxing Brazilian strict gun laws.[citation needed] He is strongly in favor of law-and-order policies and supports lowering the age of criminal responsibility and further increase the prison population of Brazil, already the 4th-largest in the world.[3]

Famous quotes and context[edit]

Bolsonaro became known in Brazil and internationally chiefly because of his controversial statements on a number of subjects. However, if everything he has declared since the 1980s is taken into consideration, several contradictions can be observed. Although he is typically viewed as conservative or far-right, he has also expressed admiration for the communist Hugo Chavez, pro-choice views, support for topless rights, among other things.

Criminality[edit]

"A teenager can rape and kill 200 people and he is still not treated like a criminal in Brazil. Most minors know that if they are going to commit a robbery, it is better to kill the victim as there is less chance of being caught, and if they are, the punishment will be the same." - Bolsonaro advocating for lowering the age of criminal responsibility.[3]

I will not rape you because you don't deserve it

In 2003, Brazilian teenagers Liana Friedenbach and Felipe Caffé were brutally murdered by five men, one of which was 16 years old. This sparked a debate over a possible reduction of the age of criminal responsibility, as in Brazil nobody under 18 is considered fully responsible for even the most serious crimes. While Bolsonaro supported such reduction to 16 years old, human rights minister and fellow congress member Maria do Rosário was against it. In a incendiary argument over the case, Rosário called Bolsonaro a rapist and he replied: "I will not rape you because you do not deserve it".[3]

Eleven years later in 2014, Bolsonaro and Rosário had another argument (this time about the military dictatorship in Brazil) in which he repeated his words.[9] This brought wide media attention and, in one of his interviews about the case, Bolsonaro explained: "It was a reflexive response. A word said to her by me over the rape accusation".[10] In another, he clarified what he originally meant: "She doesn't deserve it because she is too bad, too ugly. She is not my type. I would never rape her."[11]

Women[edit]

"I have five children. Four are men. The last time I did it weakly and the result was a woman."[12]

"No, I'm not against it. As long as it isn't with someone else's wife. When everyone's wives are doing it, mine will be allowed too. Microkinis used to be a scandal but today they are normal. Everything is evolution." - Bolsonaro about legalizing topless.[13]

"It must be a decision of the couple". - About abortion in 1999,[14] but he holds the opposite view nowadays.

Despite being called a sexist, Bolsonaro has voted in 2006 for the Maria da Penha Law (a law targeting domestic violence against women) and in 2015 for the inclusion of femicide in the Penal Code of Brazil.[15] As President in 2019, he sanctioned measures that made Maria da Penha Law even more strict.[16]

Dictatorship and communism[edit]

As a former army captain, Bolsonaro openly admires the anti-communist military regime that ruled the country between 1964 and 1985, which practiced censorship and torture.

"I support a dictatorship. We will never resolve serious national problems with this irresponsible democracy." - Bolsonaro in 1993.[2]

"In honor of Colonel Carlos Alberto Brilhante Ustra, the dread of Dilma Rousseff." - Jair Bolsonaro dedicated his vote to the impeachment of President Dilma Rousseff of the corrupt PT to the deceased General Brilhante Ustra, a former general convicted of torture and kidnapping during the military dictatorship[17] who was in charge of DOI-CODI, a facility where she was held imprisoned as an anti-government guerrilla fighter. As several others, this statement was reprehended by several politicians and other society sectors. In response, left-wing deputy Jean Wyllys spat at Bolsonaro in the parliament chamber.[18]

However, despite his opposition to socialism in Brazil, Bolsonaro has also expressed support for Hugo Chavez' socialistic regime in Venezuela:

"He is a hope for Latin America. I very much wish that this philosophy comes to Brazil. I find him unique. I plan to go to Venezuela and try to meet him. [...] He is not anti-communist and neither am I. In fact, there is nothing closer to communism than the military environment. I don't even know who is a communist nowadays." - About Hugo Chavez.[19]

Homosexuality[edit]

He said that he would "be incapable of loving a homosexual son"[1] and would "rather let his child die in an accident than be gay" according to a 2011 Playboy interview.[3] He also claimed that "We Brazilians don't like homosexuals."[1]

He said, "I don’t run the risk" of having children who are gay or date black women because "My children were very well raised."[1]

He accused the openly gay, left-wing politician Jean Wyllys of "heterophobia" when Wyllys refused to sit next to him on a plane.[20]

Race[edit]

In 2006, Bolsonaro proposed a law that would require 50% of seats in congress to be occupied "by the black and brown population".[21] This, however, was an attempt to ironize racial quotas.

"The lightest man of African descent" in a community of descendants of former slaves "weighed 7 arrobas," a unit used in Brazil mostly by cattle traders, corresponding roughly to 15 kg or 33 lbs. "They don't do anything. I think that he is not usable even as a breeder. More than R$ 1 billion are spent yearly on them."[22]

"Have you ever seen a Japanese person begging? They are a race with self-respect!"[23]

"I do not know how the commanders are positioning themselves, but, should they ever reduce the effectiveness (of the Army), there are going to be fewer people to oppose the criminals of MST (Brazilian left-wing movement that supports reforms related to agrarian properties), Haitians, Senegalese, Bolivians and all the scum of the world that, now, the Syrians are coming too. The scum of the world is coming to Brazil as if we did not already have enough problems to solve."[24]

Environmental Supervillain[edit]

Smoke from the record-breaking wildfires in southwestern Brazil. Satellite image taken by NASA in 2019.
Only vegans are complaining about the environment. Once we run out of commodities, what are going to do? Turn vegan? Live off the environment?
—Jair Bolsonaro, destroying and degrading commodities.[25]

Bolsonaro does not hide his contempt for the notion of ecological reserves. He was fined for illegally fishing in 2012, but it eventually expired in December 2018. After he took over the presidency, the auditor responsible for fining him was fired.[26] He also claimed that, once president, the indigenous populations wouldn't get "one more centimeter of land" from him[27]. The fact that these lands are rich with valuable minerals like gold and copper might have something to do with him despising the indigenous populations, calling them "slaves kept in pre-historical conditions by NGOs"[28].

The risk of his election sparked worry around the world, because he was promising to open the lands within the Amazon rainforest for exploration[29][30]. The man he named for the Environment Ministry, Ricardo Salles, is a climate change denier, to the point of slashing the funding for fighting climate change by 96%[31] and also stated that the Brumadinho tragedy, where a dam containing mining scum broke, could've been avoided if there were less "auditing bureaucracy" in place[32]. Currently, the duo is doing their very best to make the risk of turning half the rainforest becoming an strip naked wasteland of abandoned mines a reality. And, because he's such a patriot, he wants other countries' mining companies extracting all the goods. On ecological reserves where there are no minerals to be extracted, like the bay of Angra, he wants to turn them into Cancúns.[33]

When Angela Merkel told the German parliament that she would do everything in her power to stop Brazil's deforestation efforts, Bolsonaro replied, during the G20 summit in Japan, that "[Germany] uses a lot of fossil fuels. We don't. They have a to learn from us"[34]. That was reassuring.

Perhaps the most alarming thing Bolsonaro actually managed to do thus far (besides starving funding for fighting climate change) was fire the director of the INPE (Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas Espacias, or National Institute of Space Research), Ricardo Galvão. The reason? The institute published the numbers of the deforestation for the first six months of 2019, and it showed an increase of 88% comparing the month of June 2018 to June 2019. Once Bolsonaro ordered the Institute to retract (after accusing them of data tampering, working for NGOs and claiming the instruments were unreliable), the director stood his ground and also openly complained about how his boss behaved like a "14 year old, not a president".[35] Although Bolsonaro complained that publishing those numbers was "bad for the country", he's either too stupid, ignorant or arrogant (possibly all three and more) to realize how much his own actions are bad for the country's image.[36].

Family and Militias[edit]

At the end of 2018 came his first crisis, as accusations emerged of a close friend of his, Fabrício Queiroz, being a member of the militia that runs parallel to Rio de Janeiro's government. Said militia is composed mostly of cops (retired and active) that took over the very lucrative drug trafficking business and protection racketeering after the old criminal leaders were either killed or jailed. Not only that, there was strong evidence pointing that Flavio Bolsonaro, one of Jair's sons, had hired Queiroz to collect a percentage of his assessors' salaries[37]. So far, Queiroz failed to come up with a "Plausible story" and there is a high probability that the case will be archived and forgotten by the justice system, as the initial investigation didn't have a court order, despite many previous cases, including Lava Jato, having their initial investigations begin without a court order, but a request from COAF, the agency that controls and audits suspicious money movement.

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Jair Bolsonaro: Brazil's far-right president in his own words, The Guardian, 28 Oct 2018
  2. 2.0 2.1 Conversations/Jair Bolsonaro; A Soldier Turned Politician Wants To Give Brazil Back to Army Rule, James Brooks, New York Times, 25 July 1993
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Brazil's 'bullets, beef and bible' caucus wants to imprison 16-year-olds, Bruce Douglas, The Guardian, 17 April 2015
  4. Lula’s prosecution shows nobody is above the law, Financial Times, 24 Feb 2019
  5. http://brasil.elpais.com/brasil/2019/07/12/politica/1562885183_817645.html
  6. http://www.nytimes.com/1993/07/25/weekinreview/conversations-jair-bolsonaro-soldier-turned-politician-wants-give-brazil-back.html
  7. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/2148793.stm
  8. http://www2.uol.com.br/JC/_1999/2505/po2505l.htm
  9. "The danger posed by Jair Bolsonaro". The Economist. 2018-8-10. http://www.economist.com/leaders/2018/08/11/the-danger-posed-by-jair-bolsonaro. 
  10. Jornal GGN:
  11. Zero Hora: "Ela não merece [ser estuprada] porque ela é muito ruim, porque ela é muito feia. Não faz meu gênero. Jamais a estupraria."
  12. http://exame.abril.com.br/brasil/piada-de-bolsonaro-sobre-sua-filha-gera-revolta-nas-redes-sociais/
  13. 1999 Interview with Bolsonaro - Archive from IstoÉ: "Não sou contra, não. Desde que seja com a mulher dos outros. Depois que todas as mulheres estiverem usando, aí a minha poderá usar. O fio dental foi um escândalo e hoje é normal. Tudo é evolução."
  14. 1999 Interview with Bolsonaro - Archive from IstoÉ: "Tem de ser uma decisão do casal."
  15. http://www.boatos.org/politica/bolsonaro-contra-maria-penha.html
  16. http://exame.abril.com.br/brasil/bolsonaro-sanciona-mudancas-na-lei-maria-da-penha/
  17. http://www.oab.org.br/noticia/14836/juiz-condena-coronel-ustra-por-sequestro-e-tortura
  18. Dilma Rousseff: Brazilian congress votes to impeach president, Jonathan Watts, The Guardian, 18 April 2016
  19. http://acervo.estadao.com.br/pagina/#!/19990904-38672-nac-0007-pol-a7-not/busca/Bolsonaro
  20. See the Wikipedia article on Jair Bolsonaro.
  21. http://www.camara.leg.br/proposicoesWeb/fichadetramitacao?idProposicao=321151
  22. http://justificando.cartacapital.com.br/2017/04/04/nem-um-centimetro-para-quilombola-ou-reserva-indigena-diz-bolsonaro/
  23. http://justificando.cartacapital.com.br/2017/04/04/nem-um-centimetro-para-quilombola-ou-reserva-indigena-diz-bolsonaro/
  24. http://exame.abril.com.br/brasil/bolsonaro-chama-refugiados-de-escoria-do-mundo/
  25. http://brasil.elpais.com/brasil/2019/07/28/politica/1564267856_295777.html
  26. http://www1.folha.uol.com.br/ambiente/2019/03/ibama-exonera-servidor-que-multou-bolsonaro-por-pesca-irregular.shtml
  27. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/may/09/jair-bolsonaro-brazil-amazon-rainforest-environment
  28. http://noticias.uol.com.br/politica/ultimas-noticias/2019/04/17/bolsonaro-indigenas-funai-exploracao-de-terras.htm
  29. http://www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/2018/10/brazil-president-jair-bolsonaro-promises-exploit-amazon-rain-forest/
  30. http://www.brasildefato.com.br/2018/10/27/jair-bolsonaro-could-be-a-disaster-for-the-environment-scientific-research/
  31. http://epocanegocios.globo.com/Brasil/noticia/2019/05/epoca-negocios-ministerio-do-meio-ambiente-quase-zera-verba-de-combate-a-mudanca-climatica.html
  32. http://www.redebrasilatual.com.br/ambiente/2019/02/ricardo-salles-usa-descaso-da-vale-em-brumadinho-para-justificar-seus-projetos/
  33. http://www.poder360.com.br/governo/questao-ambiental-so-e-importante-para-veganos-diz-bolsonaro/
  34. http://www.dw.com/en/bolsonaro-germany-can-learn-a-lot-from-brazil-about-environment/a-49384095
  35. http://g1.globo.com/sp/vale-do-paraiba-regiao/noticia/2019/07/20/diretor-do-inpe-nega-acusacoes-de-bolsonaro-reafirma-dados-sobre-desmatamento-e-diz-que-nao-deixara-cargo.ghtml Also contains the quotes of Bolsonaro's accusations.
  36. http://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2019-07-26/bolsonaro-can-t-blind-brazil-s-eyes-on-the-amazon
  37. http://ultimosegundo.ig.com.br/politica/2019-01-17/caso-queiroz.html