LATIN AMERICA SUSTAINING A DEMOCRACY WITHOUT A FIX
From the premise of dreaming of a Latin America far removed from amateurism where solid leadership reigns, the Latin American and Caribbean region idealises, from civil society, a concrete direction that distances itself from the chaos of mass migration in search of better living standards, as a symptom of much violence with a versatility of masks, called poverty, unemployment and lack of opportunities, which unfortunately deepens a generalised and chronic inequality.
Governments across the continent, with failed states in national administration, push us to a necessary joint analysis of these factors, in order to understand how this path keeps us dependent on fascist manoeuvres, which sooner or later leads the continent’s progressive executives to sell out to Yankee directives, to suffer their strategies of judicial impeachment or to execute a murderous repression of their peoples in the streets, spurred on by the media that reproduce CNN editorials.
In recent times we have become familiar with the methods used by Bukele in El Salvador who, in an attempt to combat crime in a drastic and concrete way in the short term, does so with methods that cross the limits of human rights. It is impossible to endorse such dictatorial practices in the face of a people without opportunities, but who still defy the global powers of world manipulation.
Peru with the streets of its provinces, those of the cholos, Indians and mestizos, as the Lima elite degrade them, once again full of the blood of those who struggle. A system in the hands of people who commit crimes at every step they take, who have no regard for the needs of the displaced and impoverished majorities and whose macroeconomic figures have been cheered for decades by the centres of global speculative financial power.
And divided Brazil, with inequality at its peak, which keeps political relations on a powder keg and which, for the same reason, will probably once again set aside any process of significant change, contenting itself with the crumbs of reformism agreed with the owners of the money. The giant called to lead the Latin American reunion, strengthen its identity and give birth to a new regional financial architecture that would decouple us from the domination of Wall Street, is in practice tied in knots.
CHILE THE DISAFFECTION OF POLITICAL BUSINESS IN THE COALITION GOVERNMENT
And in our lands, watered with tears from the political management of the former Concertación (a group that today has, like any self-respecting company, a new fantasy image to capture its public), they announce through the press their disappointment and suffering for not feeling loved by the Frente Amplio and the Communist Party, with arguments so precarious that they only reveal that they are preparing to disembark, at least for the electoral processes that are just around the corner.
They have all the relevant positions in the government and run the political committee of La Moneda as they please, and speak of disaffection. Once again, they put their business, their elite salaries and their personal and club privileges first. This reminds us of how they handed over to the right those elected in both chambers in the last elections; when the public demanded that everyone should go against the right, and not let it get out of its 20% plebiscite, they, like today, disarticulate so as not to put their elitist quotas at risk … and the interests of Chileans can continue to wait in the sleep of the just. In their short-term pragmatism, they believe they have recovered, but they are putting the noose around their necks.
But for this caste, business is today, tomorrow we preoccupy ourselves with tomorrow. The effect of this political action is the notorious distrust of the voting people, which translates numerically into the decline that the parties have registered in the number of their affiliates, which are already few in comparison to the number of voters. Already at the beginning of 2022, Servel reports that, in the four months since the beginning of the social crisis, a total of 14,786 people have disaffiliated from political organisations, figures corresponding to the period between 18 October and 31 January 2020. “The number of resignations in this period is almost the same as that registered for the whole of 2018. It is an abnormal figure, given that the period under consideration is much less than a year. In 100 days, we had the same number of resignations as in the 365 days of 2018,” says Mauricio Morales, an academic at the U. de Talca. He adds: “This only corroborates two things. First, that the erosion of the social bases of the parties is not only in the soft adherents – those who vote for these parties – but also in the hard adherents, who are the militants. Secondly, the parties are accused of being the main culprits of the social crisis….”.
In its latest Servel report, Servel points out that the Republican, Partido de la Gente and Convergencia Social parties have lost approximately more than two thousand members each to date, and not least, two of them have something in common; they led the ballot in the last presidential election.
The lack of decency of the honourable men and women has no limits, their degrading and violent treatment, their argumentative baseness, their insufferable egos, their disconnection with the reality of the country and their blatant search for group and personal benefits, is their daily bread in their “reality show” in the chambers of representatives.
The executive does not miss a step in their footsteps, with cabinet changes included, and with constant outbursts that are the talk of the (all right-wing) press. In this way, the issues sacrificed in the programme are covered up in an attempt to save two or three “important” ones. The people of Chile have already suffered the consequences of these political agreements, led by the Concertación in past decades, and whose protagonists are now the majority in the political council of La Moneda. Nothing new and good under the sun.
IN THEIR FULL COLLAPSE, THE PARTIES ARE TAKING OVER THE CONSTITUTIONAL PROCESS, EXCLUDING EVERYONE, INCLUDING THE SERVEL.
The icing on the cake is the euphemistic “Agreement for Chile” cooked up in parliament, where the country and its people, their interests and the clamour for a dignified life are once again absent. Not even institutions such as the Servel escaped being excluded. They, the political elite and their small interests, their salaries, their privileges and perks are present if they are present.
Citizens ask for participation and bad politics offers agreements within four walls. The workers ask for a future with fair wages and bad politics reinforces the banks and their neoliberalism that plunders the wage earners.
Children and young people ask for sincere affection that translates into protection, accompaniment and opportunities, and bad policy allows school dropouts, prostitution and delinquency of minors, with a closed and immobile future.
Older people are clamouring for a decent return on their life-long contributions, and bad policy protects the spoils of pension funds for the speculative financial system. In synthesis, it is false that they are interested in Chile, so it is understandable the distrust in the failed institutionality that we suffer, from the interests and needs of the salaried, contracted, independent, unemployed and retired layers.
The covert constitutional reform in Chile, full of prohibitions for its peoples, with “designated experts” in a vile political quota system, with minimal elected quotas to exclude citizen diversity, and topping it off with the creation of an ambit of protection, so that, if all their bad intentions fail, the changes will be stopped in that last instance. It is likely that they will overcome all difficulties and succeed in drafting their “new constitution”, which will carry in its entrails the betrayal of this pragmatic agreement approved by the elites and ratified by their “civil servants” installed in the apparatus of power.
POPULAR SOVEREIGNTY, THE STRIVING FOR A DIGNITY THAT WILL BECOME CUSTOMARY.
In such a scenario, the organised good people continue to struggle. These hard-working and committed people are pushing day by day to remove it from the agenda. Real agreements on wage dignity between workers and employers (eliminating speculative financial agents); prioritising investment in real support for children and adolescents, with schools that provide comprehensive, non-sexist education, preventive health, culture, communications, scientific research, sport, affectivity, solidarity, spirituality, and citizen formation with attention to promoting critical consciousness; and a system of retirement, compensation in basic recreational and health services, and integration of their knowledge for old men and women that allows them a final stage with the joy of living it.
For this, the unhealthy accumulation of the elite must end. Military spending must be progressively reduced towards its elimination; companies (state, private and mixed) linked to clean energy (copper, lithium, etc.) must work together with universities and technical centres, for a country plan. And public services must have a direction towards efficiency, good treatment and a professionalised staff (in the best sense of the term), without quotas and political changes.
Good people are challenged to lead human actions to this paradigm shift, to overcome the consequences of the inhuman system in power today.
Collaborative writing by M. Angélica Alvear Montecinos; Guillermo Garcés Parada; Sandra Arriola Oporto; Sylvia Hidalgo Rojas and César Anguita Sanhueza. Political Opinion Commission