Friday, June 17, 2005

Yeah, looks like Jose Dirceu is being sacrificed ...

BBC NEWS | Americas | Brazil minister quits government

A pro-Lula friend was explaining to me that paying members of the opposition parties to vote for you in parliament has turned out to be standard practice. All the previous governments did it too. (Since Brazil got rid of its military dictatorship in 1984) It is very hard to push much legislation when there are a fair number of parties elected by proportional representation, and governments are frightened of parliament being paralyzed.

What I can't find out is whether this has always happened and everyone always knew about it, or whether everyone is really as shocked as they claim.

Roberto Jefferson is undoubtedly a nasty piece of work. He was a big supporter of a previous corrupt president in the early 90s, and is in it up to his neck in the current postal service graft scandal. He also has a "face of wood" as they say here : is totally shameless. He's as good as saying he's blowing the whistle out of revenge because he's going down for corruption. And seems to be enjoying every minute of his infamy. He also seems to be quite capable of making the whole thing up simply to spread confusion.

The secretary I mentioned in the earlier post now seems to have retracted her claims. It's all very confusing. But the big question is what happens next. Even my pro-Lula friend thinks there might be some truth in Jefferson's accusation. Politics is a dirty, pragmatic game.

At the end of the day, this ought to reflect more badly on the representatives receiving the bribes and allowing their votes to be swayed by them. However Jefferson is refusing to name any specific names. Which ironically focuses more attention on the government, spreads more FUD, and yet detracts from the plausibility of his accusation.

All very confusing ...

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