PSOL leader: 'Brazil is changing! The people should not leave the streets'

[For more on Brazil, click HERE.]

By Roberto Robaina, translated by Federico Fuentes

June 23, 2013 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- Brazil is changing! The youth uprising youth -- which has received active support from sections of the poorest people and more conscious middle classes -- has already had a greater impact on the history of the country than the "Collor Out" protest movement [of 1992, against then president Fernando Affonso Collor de Mello]. The current political system has fractured. And these facts are positive. We will be faithful to these developments, to borrow a concept from French philosopher Alain Badiou.

Public transport ticket prices were the trigger. Now multiple issues are being raised. All of them progressive. The argument that all this will open up space for a right-wing coup is simply ridiculous. This argument, put forward by sectors that want to demobilise the protests and protect the Workers Party (PT) government, seeks to hide the fact that the position of President Dilma Rousseff's PT government and Rede Globo [one of Brazil's main TV stations] are the same. They are united in their defence of the regime and share the common goal of propping up the current economic model.

The PT, which has been completely absorbed into social democracy or social liberalism, is being questioned and rejected precisely because of the bourgeois character of its governments. Rejection of the Brazilian Social Democracy Party (PSDB) is even greater, as evidence by the large indignation against the state government of São Paulo.

Within this powerful and gigantic mass movement that has no leadership, political forces are intervening, among them fascist groups who take advantage of the legitimate anti-party sentiment of the masses to attack a party that from the start has been involved in the movement, both in Porto Alegre and in Sao Paulo: the United Socialist Workers' Party (PSTU). As a leader of the Party of Socialism and Freedom (PSOL) I have many differences with the PSTU. But we are together in the struggle and I will not accept attacks against this party. They have nothing to do with the bourgeois parties or the bureaucratic and traitorous parties.

It is time to fight for the demands of the people, workers and young people. It's time to be on the streets, always defending the position that the people should organise themselves. Defending the words of the young Chileans who my friend Fernanda, a PSOL councillor, recalled to me yesterday: organise your indignation.

Finally, it is true that the acts of looting and vandalism work against against the exceptional mass movement that is unfolding. Beyond that, repression is being meted out on numerous demonstrations that has nothing to do with looting and vandalism. The chaos is the fault of the government and its regime -- a regime that does not resolve problems, that manipulates and that after a week of upheaval has not adopted any specific measures to improve the lives of the people. There are already millions who have raised their voices: it's not just about 20 cents. Despite the fact that the rulers have taken so long to meet even this basic claim. And they met it because they feared that the mass mobilisations would become an uprising. It turned in an uprising on June 20, the day that the PT and the PSDB retreated. By then it was too late. The people want more. And despite Dilma saying that she is listening to people, the government has done nothing to prove that it is not simply lying once again. Honestly, this is my belief. That is why the people should not leave the streets. After all, we have not yet been really heard.

[Roberto Robaina is the president of the Lauro Campos Foundation, a member of the PSOL national executive and a leader of the Movement of the Socialist Left (MES) current within PSOL. From the Lauro Campos Foundation website