Brazil’s Anti-Politics Election

My Brazil election preview in Jacobin: https://jacobinmag.com/2018/09/brazil-election-bolsonaro-lula-haddad-boulos-corruption The election – and general political conjuncture – is polarized, fragmented, and corrupt. Here’s an excerpt on polarization: The election’s main polarization, then, is between the PT and Bolsonaro. To some it may look like a fight between two extremes. Bolsonaro poses as an authoritarian outsider who will wash Continue reading Brazil’s Anti-Politics Election

Political elite has lost grip, left can’t take advantage

I was on The Real News this week discussing a(nother) mad week in Brazil. There are effectively four major threads to anti-corruption charges now, two against Temer/PMDB and two against Lula/PT. I won’t recap them here but instead tease out some deeper implications of what I said on the programme. (For a good summary, Stephanie Nolen Continue reading Political elite has lost grip, left can’t take advantage

What’s the opposite of these PPE/Énarque/Beltway weirdos?

On Populism and ‘Honest Politicians’ Corbyn has been praised for being an honest man, that rarity — an authentic politician. Yet his lack of success has brought criticism (and not just from the right of his own party and other centrists) for not ‘playing the game’. So which is it? Neither. The surprise upsurge – Continue reading What’s the opposite of these PPE/Énarque/Beltway weirdos?

The List Lands: Who can reconstitute democracy after this bombshell?

By 6 PM on the night of Tuesday 11 April, the plenaries of Brazil’s house and senate were empty. A long-promised political holocaust had arrived. Supreme Court Justice Edson Fachin had just authorised corruption investigations into nearly a third of interim president Temer’s cabinet, and a similar proportion of senators. The list to be investigated Continue reading The List Lands: Who can reconstitute democracy after this bombshell?

Dirty Hands, Broken Carwash – now in Portuguese

My October piece on the politicisation of the Lava Jato investigations – originally published here and in Brasil Wire has been updated and republished in translation in Brazil’s Revista Maquiavel. The initiation last night of investigations into leading politicians across the spectrum has changed matters somewhat, but the principle points remain valid, I think. Basically, it’s the following: you Continue reading Dirty Hands, Broken Carwash – now in Portuguese