The following is a translation of a leaflet issued by the Emancipation of Labour movement in Brazil (a working-class revolutionary trend which the Brazilian LCFI section, the Frente Comunista dos Trabalhadores, supports and works closely with), before the massive nationwide Day of Demonstrations on 19th June where marchers demanded the impeachment and expulsion from power of Jair Bolsonaro, Brazil’s depraved Neo-Nazi president, whose misrule has led to a mountain of deaths from Covid. The fury against Bolsonaro among the Brazilian working class is finally turning into mass political action. And this is expressed in the exponential increase in the number of protesters and cities that participate in national protests. The May 29 demonstration 2021 took place in 213 Brazilian cities and 14 cities outside Brazil and was attended by approximately 200 thousand people. At the demonstration on June 19, that is, 20 days later, more than 750,000 people in 427 acts in Brazil and in 17 countries abroad took to the streets against Bolsonaro.
F. A. S., a 26-year-old seamstress, worked in an average company with a signed portfolio, with her husband. A mother of three, and pregnant, she contracted Covid. The husband had to leave work to take care of the children and the house, and both were fired. They were unable to pay the rent of almost 400 reais, in addition to the bills for food, water, electricity, gas, internet, … He received emergency aid which was later reduced. The family became unemployed and homeless during the pandemic. They have joined dozens of other workers in a similar situation to occupy land abandoned for decades. In a police raid on the occupation, F.A.S. lost the baby. After all that, she remained firmly in the occupation Carlos Marighela, who resisted for several months against several other threats of eviction, obtained the solidarity of various parties, unions and left-wing organizations and emerged victorious.
Poverty and extreme poverty punish 61.1 million Brazilians. Unemployment has already hit a record high and reached 14.4 million people, the highest number in a decade. Blacks, women, and people with less education are hit hardest. Official inflation (IPCA) recorded the highest peak in 25 years. Fuel prices and cooking gas are still rising. Correios, Eletrobrás and Caixa Econômica are threatened with privatization later this year. This will raise (even more) their service prices, such as the electricity bill, and further increase the number of unemployed.
We are impoverished to make them rich. The Bolsonaro government is a fascist and perverse government that conducts a new cycle of enrichment of the bosses. Blackmailing with blows and exploiting the pandemic the government increases poverty, unemployment, despair and hunger. The government’s greatest aspiration is to consolidate a military dictatorship, police and militias, creating a coup so not to leave power anymore. The last presidential elections in 2018 have already been intervened by the Armed Forces high command so that Lula, the candidate for which much of the population intended to vote, remained unjustly imprisoned. That election was the continuity and deepening of the 2016 coup. And the 2022 elections will be rigged if we allow them to.
Although there are differences between O Globo (Brazil’s main bourgeois media organisation), the Supreme Court, the PSDB with Bolsonaro, all were together in the coup and work together in a bosses front, attacking the living conditions of the population. We workers need to create our own front, to unite for our common interests. To fight hunger, poverty, unemployment, evictions, police violence and the pandemic, in the streets and in elections, to fight for a workers government. This time, ours alone, no bosses. The 2016 coup was the result of the popular front of workers with bosses. It is clear that we can only trust ourselves and not those who six years ago joined with Bolsonaro to carry out a coup against us.
We need a united front of the left-wing labour parties to stay alive, not just for the 2022 elections. To get rid of Bolsonaro and the many military personnel who have come to power we need to organize committees of unemployed, sharing basic supplies, supporting occupations, plenary sessions, strikes, mutual assistance funds. If most workers are already forced to expose themselves to the virus to work, staying at home without a fight does not solve the problem of the pandemic. You must go out on the street carefully but go out and fight so as not to die of hunger, or shooting, or Covid.
May 29th was important. June 19th, too. But we need more than that to achieve the demands of our parade. “Bolsonaro Out!” just to wear down the government, it’s not enough for us. It is necessary to create a united national plan of mobilization and struggle, with united demonstrations, without divisionism, organized by Popular Workers’ Assemblies to defend the lives of workers. We need a journey of continuous struggle to ensure the implementation of measures that take us out of the current suffocation. We at Emancipation of Labour think that some of these measures to combat the Pandemic and get out of the Crisis should be:
1. Immediate and mass vaccination for the entire population, prioritizing the poorest and most vulnerable sectors!
2. Emergency aid of a minimum wage for all underemployed and unemployed!
3. Against inflation, freezing the products of the basic basket, gas, fuels and rents.
4. Exemption from all tariffs with continuity of provision of water, energy, internet services!
5. No layoffs or evictions in the city and in the countryside!
6. Nationalization without indemnification of the big companies that close!
7. Nationalization and control by the workers’ organizations of pharmaceutical companies, medical supplies and the private health system!
8. General amnesty of workers’ debts to the loan sharks of banks and credit cards! Credit to associations and production cooperatives without interest!
9. Do not return to face-to-face classes until vaccination of the entire population!
10. Repeal of labor, social security and all coup measures.
11. Full rights of Brazilian citizenship for all immigrants.
12. Down with the government – Bolsonaro, Mourão and all scammers!
13. Let millionaires, bankers and foreign companies pay for the crisis!
14. Against the oppression of women, blacks and lgbtqa+ of the working class, the indigenous and quilombolas*!
15. End the of repression of the working class!
*population descendent from rebel ex-slaves