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How many natives were there ,in Brazil by 1500 when Portuguese navigator Pedro Alvares Cabral disembarked on the Brazilian coast? Experts don't agree, but a good guess would be from 4 to 5 million. After centuries of decimation by massacres, enslavement and disease, the Brazilian Indian population had dwindled to 97,000 by 1970. The latest census, however, shows the number of Indians growing at a 10.8 percent rate a year, for the last 10 years (compare this to 1.64 percent for the population in general). From 0.2 percent of the Brazilian population in 1990, they doubled to 0.4 percent of all Brazilians in 2000, amounting to 734,127 souls. These positive numbers must have warmed the heart of a man who just passed away and to whom we are dedicating our cover story. This man whose life was dedicated to the Indian cause is called Orlando. Without Orlando Villas B6as and his brothers' efforts in the '50s the Brazilian push into the Amazon would have been much bloodier. Hadn't the Villas Boas adopted the -Die if necessary, kill never" motto, some of the tribes that we know today would have been wiped out by the expeditions opening airfields and founding cities and villages in the wilderness. That the Indians themselves loved him dearly there was no doubt. They used to call him djunua (father). And this filial love was once again shown at Orlando's wake, when chief Raoni, together with his warriors, wasn't ashamed of crying loudly by the white chief's coffin while repeating: -We lost our father." Thanks, Orlando.
Send mail to: P.O. Box 50536 - Los Angeles, CA 90050-0536 Ads/Editorial: (323) 255-8062 Info: (323) 255-8062 Fax: (323) 257-3487 Brazzil on line: http://www.brazzil.com E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Publisher and Editor: Rodney Mello Assistant Editor: Leda Bittencourt Commercial Director: Airton Mandarino Art&Design Director: Marina Yoshie (email@example.com) Entertainment Editors: Sam & Harriet Robbins Book Review: Bondo Wyszpolski Music Editor: Bruce Gilman Brazil Bureau Chief: Marta Alvim E-mail: mItdalvim@yahoo.corn With the help Of volunteers around the world TIME TO RENEW? Sorry, we don't send reminders. Look at the label to know when your subscription ends. BRAZZIL (ISSN 1091-868X) is published monthly by Brazzil 2039 N. Ave. 52, Los Angeles, CA, 90042-1024.Periodicals Postage rate paid at Los Angeles, CA. Single copy sold for $2. One year subscription for 12 issues is $3 (three dollars) in the U.S., $15 in Canada and Mexico, and $18 in all other countries. No back issues sold. Allow 5 to 7 weeks to receive your first issue. You may quote from or reprint any of the contents with proper copyright credit. Editorial submissions are welcome. Include a SASE (self addressed and stamped envelope) if you want your material mailed back. Brazzil assumes no responsibility for any claims made by its advertisers. The Library of Congress ISSN: 1524-4997 POST MASTER : Send address changes to BRAZZIL PO Box 50536 - Los Angeles, CA - 90050-0536
Cover Orlando, the last of the Villas Boas
Cover by Salvino Campos Woman from Canudos, Bahia (August 2002)
Behavior Crime, transvestites, the girls from Brazil
Brazil-USA Lula meets Bush and knocks him down
Presidency Time for President Lula become a president
Economy Politicians taking care of the money
Impressions Brazilians need a mental revolution
Politics Has the government really changed?
Profile Lula, from migrant to president
Education Brazilian Bolsa-Escola goes to Africa
Opinion Those on the Left can do no wrong
In Portuguese An excerpt from Vidas do Carandiru
Ecology Fighting the Amazon loggers
Impressi ns Parintins, where Indigenous culture is alive
Places Following Tom Jobim's path
Music In Bahia, listening to fonb and reggae
How To Doing business in Brazil. Lesson 1.
Departments 06 Rapidinhas
12 letters 49 Cultural Pulse 51 Classifieds 52 That's Brazilian
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Meanwhile, South of the Equator A killer deputy kills again. Oscar Niemeyer botches again. Patriot ransvestites serd money home. And derriere wigglers sue Miami scort service. JOHN FITZPATRICK No Comment This is an edited version of an article, which appeared at the bottom of a page in tae Estado de S. Paulo newspatxx on December 6. "Ex-deputy Osvaldo (Veva) Mutran, 71, was arrested in the act, after killing David Abreu de Souza, 8 years old. The bcy was playing on Munn's land in Marabd in southern Path state. According to witnesses. Mutran came out of his house carrying a revolver. David was shot in the head. -The boy was lying on the ground. Veva approached and kicked the body, telling the boy to ran away", said a neighbor. "Later in the day, local people invaded Mutrar 's land alai damaged it. In 1992 Mutran had Ins mandate as a state depoy removed aftei invadir g the home ofan official and shooting him to death. He was condemned to 10 years in prison but did not stay one year in jail." Bad News for Loa,ers of Architecture Oscar Niemeyer, tie creator of some of the world's most horrific architectural waits, including Brazil's inhuman capital. Brasilia. is still goiag, strong at 95. According to 1' ea magazine, he is working on three new projects, including an auditoriu.m in Sao Paulo's Ibirapuera Park 'fever an international tribunal is set up to try criminals, Niemeyer should be the first to be brought to account. One hopes that in the Gentiles to oarne the city of Brasilia crumbles to dust and disappears and Niemeyer is rememberec like the arrogant Ozymandiasin Shelby's eponymous poem. My name is Ozymandias, king of kings: Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!" Nothing beside remains. Round the decay Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare The lone and level sands stretch far away. Transvestite Patriots Many families in Brazil rely on remittances from members of their family living aixl working abroad. The biggest community is in Japan, where over a quarter of a million Brazidans, most of whom are of Japanese descent. Banco do Brasil even has several branches in Japan to handle the transfers. flowever, another group of Brazil ian emigrants &so sends home remittances transvestites workin a in Italy. In some cases they are remitting several thousand dollars a month, a substantial sum by local standards As the remittances from these emigrants also helps the country's trade balance, one looks forward to the day when their efforts are p ablicly acknowledged. To my knowledge the curmnt finance minister, Pedro Malan, has not paid any tribute to these patriots. Maybe the next finance minister will and, should former President Itamar Franco be nominated Ikazi ian ambassaeo- to Italy, as may happen, then he should host an official reception for them. Coming to a Cinema Near You i The image of Brazil as a place full of happy-go-lucky people dancing ir the street and playing football is likely to change, thanks to two films, which have attracted much domestic attention, one of which will shortly ne launched abroad. The theme, however, is something which every Brazilian faces every day----violence and clime. Cidade de Deus (God's Town, the name ofa poor Rio's neighborhood) is set in afavela (shantytown) and follows the viOent actions ofithe gangswho live there. Nearly all the cast is amateur and the film gives a flavor of life inside afavela a place most Brazilians have never visited. The film was elected one of the top five foreign films by an =american itiy and there is talk that it might be nominated for an Oscar. Another film, which has just been released here, is called Onibita / 74 (Bus 174) uad describes the horrible event in June 2000, which millions watched live on television, when a gunman Wok over a public bus in Ric de Janeiro and held a young woman hostage. In a botched rescue operation; the police managed to kill the hostage and wound the gunman who later be exporsed but it promises to show an died, or was killed, according to some versions. It is not known if this film wtfortunately common aspect of life here.The Girls from Brazil Some well-known Brazilian girls were annoyed to learn that they were being featured as raodels cin an American escort site, based in Miami, and are taking legal action. One can understand the reaction but, while they are obviously not prostitutes their lives, i fnot bodies and made themselves public t v.only themselves to blame in the way they have prostute4 pro they pe hrty. ae I will net name them here but both were members of a:short-lived pop group and neither had any talent. Their sole asset was to wiggle (rebolar as they say in Brazi) their skimp -covered bacides. They have appened iri the Brazilian version of PkOwseveral times and undergone the Idadofplastic Iirgery, which seems mandatory for airy Jp and coming celebrity these Jays. As they cannot actually sing, dance or act they have really notiing to offer the public, whici bas a shalt attention span. One of them married and had a baby. 'This gave her nine months attention in the trashy TV magazmes plus a few months more as a proud young mother. In one particu la rly nauseating publicity stunt, she was photogr aphed breastfeeding her own child at the same time as another baby which, for some reason, could not get its own mother's milk. No doubt, at this moment, he agent ,s thinking of ways of getting more publicity. In fact instead of sung the escort agency in Miami these girls should te thanking it because they will be back in the news again. And, dear reader. I know I am falling ilit0 the same trap by writing about them However, I bet most of you are curious to find out who they are. BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
Mite Chiers Gone A hero and a legend for Brazilians and the Indians he protected for decades, Orlando Villas B6as has died. His legacy lives, however. From a low of 97,000 in 1970 today there are more than 700,000 Brazilian Indians. They represent 0.4 percent of the Brazilian population and occupy 12 percent of the national territory. ELMA LIA NASCIMENTO
BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
The party started in the Xingu reservation as soon as the Indians living there heard that Orlando Villas Boas, the man they used to call djuniki (father). had died in Sao Paulo. And for days they sang. and danced and also cried. Kayapo Chief Raoni with Megaron and , Bepcom, two of his warriors, took a plane and made the trip to the wake at the Sao Paulo Assembly House. -We lost our father.- they would repeat while embracing Villas BOas wife, Marina. and their two children Orlando Filho and Noel and cry ing copiously. Raoni then began to stroke the face ofthe old friend while crying loudly. A little later he would tell people in a mix of Portuguese and Kayapo about his experience with a man he lived for so many years in the Xingu Park: "Orlando taught me the Portuguese language.
When I had learned Portuguese he told me his history and I told him the Indians' history. We've always worked together for my people in Xingu." Orlando Villas Boas died December 12 at age 88 from an acute intestinal infection after being hospitalized on November 14 at the Albert Einstein Hospital. The talkative, expansive, friendly indigenist was the last surviving brother of the Villas Boas (Orlando, Claudio, Leonardo, and Alvaro) who dedicated their lives to the protection of the Brazilian Indians. Leonardo, the youngest, died from a jungle disease when the Xingu reservation was being created in 1961. Alvaro didn't go with the expedition, but also worked with the Indians and became Funai's (Fundacao Nacional do Indioâ€” The National Indian Foundation) president in the 1980s. Claudio never married. Orlando married Marina in secret in a public notary's office in Goiania, state of Goias, but only after a lot of resistance and when he was already 55. Marina Lopes Dias was a Paulista like him and worked as a nurse for the Xingu Indians. They were engaged for seven years and had two sons: Orlando Villas Boas Filho, 33 and Noel, 27. Both share the father's interest for Indians. Zest for Adventure Orlando was born on January 12, 1914, in Santa Cruz do Rio Pardo in the interior of Sao Paulo state, in his father Agnello's coffee plantation. A year older than Claudio, Orlando was well versed in Brazilian history besides being a born raconteur and a good writer. He had 10 other siblings. Due to Agnello's disease the Villas Boas family moved to Alto do Pinheiros in Sao Paulo city. In 1941, both parents died and the Villas B6as were scattered around living in boarding houses and other crowded places. Orlando ended up working as a clerk for multinational Sao Paulo Light and Power Co.â€”the Anglo-Canadian company was in charge of electricity and the streetcar system in the cityâ€” and then as an accountant for Esso in a job that bored him immensely. He was looking for a little more excitement in life when he and his brothers heard about the federal government's program to explore the unknown Amazon and open settlements in the area. They weren't accepted though. The organizers of the journey did not want city dwellers, but illiterate people as they used to say. 8
Orlando and his brothers did not take no for an answer, traveled to Goias and for 22 days rowed their boat till they reached the camp in Barra do Garcas (state of Mato Grosso) where the expedition was leaving from. Disguised as sertanejos (country folk), this time they were accepted and got their passport: a hoe. They soon would become the leaders of the expedition. Orlando was 29 when he joined the government sponsored RoncadorXingu expedition, inspired by idealist Marshall Rondon (his motto: "Die, if necessary, kill never.") and whose main objective was to chart areas for future colonization and to build makeshift airstrips. This was a different time. Brazilians feared the war and a possible invasion by foreign powers. It was a time in which many voices started to urge that Brazil had to develop its interior to protect it. The expedition lasted from 1943 to 1960, and during these years, the Villas Boas brothers contacted many tribes who had never before interacted with the white man. Commented Orlando in his diary, "I lived 40 years among the Indians and I've never seen one slapping the face of the other. In our expedition, however, the peon with the fewest crimes had killed eight people. And we were the ones who were going- to civilize the Indians."
The explorers also started 42 villages, opened close to two miles of trails in the jungle and built 36 airstrips. At least 18 times they were attacked by the Indians they were trying to contact. Their only defense was to shoot their guns in the air. Orlando was hit by malaria, according to his own account "more than 200 times." The routes found and opened by the expedition ended up also being used by loggers and garimpeiros (precious metals prospectors), who became responsible for many of the diseases and problems affecting the Indian population. From 1943 to 1960, the Villas Boas brothers helped establish Western civilization's first contact with several Indian tribes. They met the Xavantes in 1948, the Jurunas in 1949, the Kayabis in 1951, the Txucarramaes in 1953 and the Suyas in 1959. There is one funny anecdote about the Villas Boas's contact with the Txucarramaes told by Orlando. To show their friendliness to those Indians, the indigenists took as gifts to the men in the tribe knives, axes and other tools, but didn't bring anything to the women. They became very angry for not getting any gift and abandoned the village. The Villas Boas suggested then that the men throw a banquet to appease the women and bring them back. The party was prepared, but the women didn't budge. The Indians then turned their ire against the three brothers threatening to kill them. To protect their lives, Claudio hugged an old female Indian who had stayed in the village and BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
wouldn't let her go. It was the old lady who ended up convincing the Indians to forgive the brothers. There was no other way for her to get rid of Claudio. Vocation Found It was this close contact with the indigenous peoples and the finding that this exchange between the white man and the Indians was not beneficial to the latter that prompted the Villas Boas to become outspoken defenders of reservations and other ways to protect the indigenous culture. In 1961 they convinced the federal government to create the 5.6 millionacre Xingu National Park, an Indian reservation. More than 3,000 Indians from 17 different nations live there today. The main rule at the reservations: white man, get out. Orlando and Claudio eventually decided to live with the Indians and moved to the jungle. For 48 years, Orlando lived with the Indians, on the border of the Xingu river in the states of Mato Grosso and Para. He once listed the four basic points for an effective protection of the Indian's way of living: 1. Keep Brazilians and tourists out. 2. Do not impose 'white man's logic.' 3. Keep your hands off village affairs. 4. Prevent Indian healers' medicinal knowledge from falling into "biotech pirates" hands. Orlando was 61 when he left Posto Leonardo, the place named for his brother, with the intention of retiring. It didn't work this way and he commented at the time: "In Brazilian for an indigenist to retire, he needs to get 250 malarias." By then he only had some 200. Finally, he moved with Marina and the children to the middle-class Lapa neighborhood in sao Paulo. In 1971 and then again in
BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
1975, brothers Orlando and Claudio were nominated to the Nobel Peace Prize. Nation Without Memory Talking aboutthe conditions in which the Indians live today, Orlando, in an interview, in April 2001 to the magazine Corn Crdncia, said, "For too many people, and this includes our authorities, the Indian is still a folkloric figure. Indians are on the way to their end. It would be good if they could have our protection. It seems that we don't take into account that they gave us a continent so that we could become a nation. It's not enough to guarantee that the Indians have a land, we have to protect them from an indiscriminate contact with people w o want to exploit the riches of their I d and culture." "We live in a country without mem If it weren't for that, the old Mars all Candid° Mariano da Silva Rondon wo Id be considered by all the most import nt man of the 20th century. It was he w o, well ahead of his time, created the PI (Servico de Protecao ao indio—Ind an Protection Service) in 1910. His cone rn with the Indians was decisive for he history of our country. We had the pr vilege to know him and became his frie ds in the mid '40s, when we joined the March to the West, which had been reated by Gettllio Vargas. I'd like to ote that at the start of the Roncador-Xi gu expedition, Rondon's intervention as decisive in a way that the Xava tes weren't massacred by a military fr nt, which intended to "clean the way" fo the Brazilian expansion. When we ale ed the Marshall to this danger, he ord red that the military front be suspended and that we assume the leadership of the Expedition. "We've never became Indians •urselves, but we learned a lesson on ho to live in society. We have never seen two Indians discussing or an Indian co pie fighting. I've never seen a mother pu ling her daughter's ear or a father hitti g a son. Among Indians, elders are the history's owners, men are the vill ge's owners and children are the world's wn-
ers. We've lost this notion. Children in our society are a bothersome reality. Not for the Indian. During ceremonies all participate, there are no privileges. They give us a lesson of social behavior, something we've lost and will never get back again." Epic Lives The details of the Villas Boas's adventures were fin ally revealed to the world in 1995 when Orlando decided to publish the diary he wrote during the RoncadorXingu expedition. The vivid reports became the 615-page book A Marcha para o Oeste - A Epopeia da Expedicao do Roncador-Xingu (The March to the West —The Epic ofthe Roncador-Xingu Expedition) published by Editora Globo. The work was awarded that year's Premio Jabuti, Brazil's most important literary prize, which is given by the Brazilian Chamber of Books. The book was just one ofthe 14 that he wrote and published. In the year 2000 he started to write an autobiography that was left unfinished. The Kayapo people believe that the land they were born and live on belong to them by divine right. They see themselves as celestial creatures who came to earth in a light beacon and were able to witness the creation of the world and life. They can be extremely forceful defending their territory. They almost killed the Villas Boas in 1953. That year, Claudio 9
Villas B6as wrote in his diary, about a meeting with the Kayapo: "They appeared very agitated, confused, making sweeping gestures and talking ceaselessly. This direct contact with the Txukarramae [Mentuktire] proved to us that they were definitely Je Indians, with the same characteristics of the other hordes generally called Kayapo. They almost all had their lower lips exaggeratedly deformed with enormous wooden discs, their heads shaven above their foreheads, and their ears pierced." Raoni, the Kayapo chief, with the help of British rock star Sting, has made the Kayapo cause known worldwide. No one will forget him after seeing him once: his lower lips protruding due to a wooden disk known as acocacci and he is generally adorned with colorful feathers. Orlando reminded in his candid style in an interview with Globo Rural, March 1996: "The expedition at the beginning had nothing to do with Indians. We were workhorses, it was hard work. To open trails, to select areas for settling and to build airfields for civilian and military refueling. At the time, airplanes had little flight autonomy and the government wanted to consolidate the North-South air connection through the center of the country. A question of national security." On January 25,2000, the president of Funai, Carlos Mares de Souza fired Orlando Villas Boas from his Funai job, by fax. Souza argued that the indigenist could not present himself for work in Brasilia everyday because he lived in Sao Paulo and that he should be ashamed of receiving money without working. Funai was created in 1965, at the insistence of the Villas Boas brothers. In 1999, the foundation had hired Orlando as a special adviser (superior consulting, they called it) for a little over 500 dollars a month. Orlando didn't complain about losing the paycheck, but complained. "I don't dispute the firing, but the way it was done," he told reporters at the time. Then President Fernando Henrique Cardoso invited him then to cooperate with the Indigenist Council and told the national hero• on the phone, "It was a bureaucratic misunderstanding." Orlando accepted .the half-hearted apology and told the President, "It looked like something from an underdeveloped, marginalized country." For his work in favor of the Indians, Orlando, since 1974. had a pension 10
granted him by President General Ernesto Geisel. He also received another pension from Social Security. These two pensions togetherrepresented approximately 600 dollars. The Indian Nation The number is disputed, but it's commonly accepted that Brazil's original Indian population was between 4 and 5 million. This number had dwindled to 250,000 in 1789 and to 97,000 in 1970. It's believed that since 1500 when Brazil was discovered, an average of one million Indians were killed every century. Ninety two tribes were extinct from 1900 to 1995 alone, almost one tribe every year of the last century. Only recently Brazil was able to revert this trend and since the 1980s the Indian tribes from the Xingu area, in the Amazon, started to grow again and now at a yearly average rate of 3.5 percent. Today there are more than 700,000 Brazilian Indians. They speak at least 150 different languages and are divided into 210 different ethnic groups. While 30,000 speak Guarani, more than 100 language's have a total of 400 Indians who speak it. Today, Brazilian Indians represent a little over 0.4 percent of the Brazilian population and occupy 104.367.993 hectares (12.26 percent) of the 851.196.500 hectares of the national territory. Life is not the same for all Indians. While the tribes from the Amazon can live in demarcated and ample areas, the Guaranis from Mato Grosso, for example, have very, little space for themselves. Their situation became a national scandal a few years ago when Guarani Caiovas started to kill themselves. Recent studies made by NGOs and government agencies show that 12 Indian ethnic groups need help in order to not become extinct. According to data released in December by the IBGE (Institut° Brasileiro de Geografia e Estatistica—Brazilian Institute for Geography and Statistics), the indigenous population in Brazil grew considerably more than the general population since 1991, the year of the previous censUs. They grew 10.8 percent a year in the last ten years. While Indians represented 0.2 percent of the Brazilian population in 1991 their numbers doubled
and now they are 734,127 individuals. Living conditions for indigenous people, however, are far from promising. In the age bracket ofthose 15 years old or older, Indians have the highest illiteracy rate in the population (26.1 percent)—in 1991, this rate was 50.8 percent— followed by blacks (21.5 percent). The Jungle Mystique In 1884, German anthropologist Karl von den Steinen, who 'was also a doctor and a philosopher, became the first white man to visit and study the tribes of the upper Xingu. Steinen described and photographed tribal ceremonies like the inter-tribal moitarci (barter) and the hukahuka wrestling, among others. In the ensuing 50 years some twenty other expeditions repeated Steinen's experience. There were missionaries, filmmakers and other foreign anthropologists. Most were well received, but there were a few exceptions. In 1899, five Americans were killed by the Suya. In 1925, English Colonel Percy Fawcett also lost his life while looking for ancient Atlantean cities. Twelve Italians were massacred possibly by the Jurunas in the late 1930s. These were all short visits, though. American anthropologist Buell Quain, in 1938, spent the longest time in fieldwork among the Trumai Indians. Quain, still 27, committed suicide in 1939, while living with the Kraho Indians. The Villas Boas brothers were the first outsiders to take permanent residence among the Xingu natives. They arrived in November 1945, leading the Central Brazil Foundation's Roncador-Xingu Expedition. While highly praised by most, the Villas Boas also had their critics. Some anthropologists have accused them of forcing the migration of many tribes to the Xingu and openingthe way for the destruction of the Indian culture. Others have also complained about the way the Xingu Park was used by the military governments as a well dressed window of a respect for human rights that did not exist in other areas of society. In their defense it has been said that the changes would have come with or without them. Without them, the adjustment would probably have been much more painful and bloody. More than 15 indigenous groups might have disappeared without their intervention. BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
A Son's letter Chief Raoni was a teen when he met the Villas Boas brothers in 1953. In 1995 he dictated the following letter in Portuguese, which was then sent to Orlando and Claudio Villas Boas:
"Orlando, Claudio: Carta do cacique Raoni aos Villas B6as Eu estou aqui natua espera. Como voce era eu no esqueco. Voce conheceu meu pal, meu irmdo. Eu era rapaz novo. Eu sempre lembro voce e Claudio. NOs trabalhamos junto no Leonardo e no Diaurum. Quando encontrei voce eu no entendia ainda sua lingua. Aprendi o portugues corn voce. Voce sempre contava histOria de gente ruim para indio. Voce falou que iaacontecer muito problema corn meu povo. Muito problema... Lembrei disso quando fazendeiro fez hotel no rio Liberdade. Pescador tava acabando corn peixe no rio. Indio ia pescar na boca do Liberdade, ndo tinha mais peixe. Por isso eu briguei corn dono... mandei tudo embora. Eu nAo machuquei. Peguei assim e falei: vdo embora! Eu fui corn cinco guerreiros. Peguei barco, peguei motor... Agora to fazendo aldeia la. Tiravam mato onde era cemiterio de meu pai; eu no gostei disso. Fazendeiro quando entra aqui eu prendo, amarro e mando embora. No quero aqui! Vdo embora! Eu falei. Aqui nAo é de fazendeiro, ndo é de Funai, nAo é de Ibama. 0 Xingu ë meu! Xingu é do meu povo. Orlando, Claudio: eu estou aqui segurando a terra. Ndo quero fazendeiro, ndo quero garimpeiro, nem madeireiro aqui. Ndo quero que acabe mato, bicho, o peixe. Voce é inteligente, voce explica tudo para nOs. Quando deixou nOs, Orlando, voce falou pranos ficar de olho aberto. Ficar forte para defender a terra. Nunca esqueci. sO isso. Eu estou mandando abraco muito grande para voce, pra Claudio, pra seu filho e pra Marina". BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
"Orlando, Claudio Letter from Chief Raoni to th'e Villas B6as I'm here waiting for you. I don't forget the way you were. You knew my father, my brother. I was a young lad. I always remember you and Claudio. We worked together in the Funai agencies Leonardo and Diaurum. When I first met you I still couldn't understand your language. I learned Portuguese with you. You always told stories about people who were mean to Indians. You said that my people would ace lots of problems. Lots of problems... I remem ered that when a farmer built a hotel at Liberd de river. Fishermen were finishing all fish in the riv r. Indians went to fish in the Liberdade's mouth, but there was no more fish. That's why I argued 'th the owner.., sent everyone away. I didn't hurt. J st went there and said: go away! I went with five w iors. Took a boat, took engine.. .Now I'm buildin a village there. They were cutting where my father' cemetery was; I didn't like that. When a farmer gets in here I seize him, tie him up and send him a ay. Don't want them here! Go away! Here's not fro farmer, not from Funai [Indian National Found tion], not from Ibama [Brazilian Institute for the Environment and Renewable Natural Resources]. Xingu is mine. Xingu is from my people Orlando, Claudio: I'm here holding on to the land. I don't want farmers, I don't want gold prospectors or loggers here. I don't want brush, animals and fish to end. You are smart, you explain everything to us. When you left us, Orlando, you told us to keep the eye open, to stay strong and defend the land. I never forgot. That's all. I'm sending you a very big hug, to Claudio, to your son and to Madna.11
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DOCTOR, HEAL YOURSELF Brazil should fix its own problems before it decides to join the bandwagon ofhatred against the USA. At least the USA educates its young people! What does Brazil do for its young people? Nothing! Everyone knows this is true. You gun down your own children, killing them like they are roaches. You don't otter education or anyway out of poverty, that's why AIDS is spreading. Also teenagers pregnant bring more poor babies into this cruel circle. You have some nerve! Clean up your own back yard before you put down other countries! Brazil ignores its c,vvn problems and points its jealous finger at America, while at the same time, beg for money to help your own miserable situations. Without the tourists from America and Europe, Brazil would not survive, everyone knows this. Before you curse another, help the black Brazilians that you ignore, help the Indians you ignore, help the young people that you view as pests, educate your ignorant young people and give all Brazilians a chance at a good lifer One Fed Up Black Brasileira Via Internet GLOOM & DOOM Do you really think publishing articles like the ones Brazzil publishes ad any value? 50 million Brazilians are poor, 32 million don't have access to clean water, and 24 million are illiterate. Why not try to help Brazilians instead of instigating hatred! Via Internet ADOPTION BLUES I read your article about the street kids. If they have parents who have allowed them to go onto the streets why can't the parents be contacted to give permission for their kids to be adopted? 'While I can have my own children, I would much prefer to take a child, like in your article, and give that child a decent and comfortable life. As I feel, that the children who are offered up for adoption, through the courts already have a better chance how would it be possible to adopt a street child? Why are these kids not given the same opportunities to be on some kind of adoption register? Any advice you can 12
give me would be greatly appreciated. Christine Via Internet GREAT NEWS Brazzil is great. I learned more about Brazil by reading 4 of your articles than 6 months of analysis by CNN, The Economist, Christian Science Monitor, and The Wall Street Journal combined. Thanks. Kris Kirkeiner Via Internet BRAZIL PRIMER Dear John Fitzpatrick, just want to say that I've been reading your articles with great interest since arriving in Brazil and taking a Brazilian bride. I .think your last Miss You, Fernando" —WWN\ .brazzil.com/ p1 06jan03.htm) deserves special recognition because you've done what no other writer has done before (including Joseph A. Page in The Brazilians) and that is to sum up the problem here in this great but sadly backward country, clearly and succinctly. You've written what has fallen from my mouth on many occasions and that is that Brazilians need to take responsibility for the mess that Brazil is currently in. Sadly, however, 90 percent of them have never traveled to Canada (my homeland) or Scotland or any other developed nation and fathom the idea that simple everyday actions, coupled with a dose of responsibility, could pave the way for a better Brazil. It's not that difficult a leap. However as you so rightly wrote, it is something that is completely lost on the majority of Brazili ans— including the better educated and well traveled. I hope your article stirs up a hornet's nest, because the debate needs to be started—and if, or probably more to the fact, WHEN, you start receiving dozens of irate e-mails and responses from Brazilians—just remember you're 100 percent right. As I tell my wife daily, I can love this country, but if I don't complain, it won't get better. Parabens! I look forward to all your future writings. Todd Southgate www.lagoayirtuat corn LULA MUST COOL DOWN Hi, John: Greetings from London. Just read your article on Brazil and Lula at Brazzil.com. I have been a great fan of Brazil and things Brazilian (especially the music) from childhood and found your insights as an expatriate quite revealing. I am watching closely to see what kinds of changes Lula will he able to make. Methinks he
will have to water down the socialist rhetoric considerably. John Great Britain SMART VIEWPOINT John, Just wanted to compliment you on the great essay on this month's Brazzil. You cleverly provide us, Brazilians abroad, with a realistic point of view. I really enjoy your writing. Drey Dias New York, New York ELITIST RUBBISH John, I have read your columns for several months now, after living in Brazil (mostly in So Paulo) for the last year and a half. And while I find your definition of the problems here to be fairly accurate, your remedies are paternalistic. I feel you simply need a large caipirinha and a few days on the beach. You write as if you are very uptight, and even worse, condescending. I fail to see how your continuing confrontational ways are going to change anyone's mind, which you seemingly have some desperate need to licr. A more cynical reader might guess you are simply trying to be controversial to gain readership, logic be damned. Furthermore, you contradict yourself as you write. How can Brazilians be passive yet drive like maniacs? Be passive and yet refuse to depend on the police to get cats out of trees? Doyou believe this Ozzie and Harriet world of the USA really exist? Currently the USA, where I was born and raised, has by some statistics more black men in jail than in college. People of color there cannot even drive without being harassed. Yet here you complain about no one calling the police, feeling free to drive. Which I feel is correct—people here take care of themselves more than you think. They are tolerant ofnoise and don't sue each other at every chance— asking courts to solve their problems. Which society has more of an inferiority complex? Perhaps it is YOU that needs to have their ass wiped for himself—the Brazilians seem to be much less dependant on the government, which is therefore weaker. I feel we are better for it. lksrazal Sao Paulo, Brazil FOR MANY MORE LETTERS AND ENTIRE LETTER SEE: hftp://www.brazzil.com
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BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, the incoming President of Brazil, is demonstrating an uncanny ability to move forward a progressive agenda while keeping his conservative antagonists at bay. This was clearly demonstrated in his meeting with George W. Bush in Washington on December 10. Pablo Gentili, an Argentine international analyst at the State University of Rio de Janeiro declares: "Da Silva reaped the support ofthe Bush administration while making it clear that his government will set its own agenda and priorities. He has an extraordinary capacity to build broad support for his left-leaning policies in the face of domestic and international adversity." Before da Silva's arrival in Washington key Republican Congressional figures, along with right wing conservatives identified with the Reagan administration's bellicose policies in Central America, were calling for Bush to take a tough stand against the incoming president who is common referred to as "Lula." They decried the new leftist threat in Latin America, asserting a "Lula, Castro, Chavez axis" was in the making, referring to presidents Fidel Castro of Cuba and Hugo Chavez of Venezuela. Lula had also been hit by international speculators prior to his visit to Washington. Fearful that the social policies advocated by the new government will adversely affect Brazil's ability to make payments of its huge international debt totaling $240 billion, the investment bank ofJ P Morgan Even the most orthodox on December 2 downgraded its rating of Brazil from "neutral" to "negative." This international lending institutions shift led to a slide in the value of Brazil's currency, the Real, and a slump in the have been checkmated by da country's stock market. As Francisco Menezes of IBA SE, an Silva's announced policies. The independent research institute in Rio de head of the International Monetary Janeiro, notes, "Lula before coming to Washington positioned himself so that in- Fund, Horst Kohler, called Lula "a ternational institutions and politicians like Bush would find it difficult to go after leader for the twenty-first him." The day after he won the Brazilian election Lula declared that his number one century." priority when he takes office on January l't is to end hunger among 23 million BrazilROGER BURBACH ians, approximately one-seventh of the country's population. The campaign will Even the most orthodox international be accompanied by increased subsidies to poor families aimed at keeping their chil- lending institutions have been check mated dren in school, by a fairly radical agrarian by da Silva's announced policies. Just days reform program, and by significant gov- before Lula left for Washington, the head ernment support for agricultural coopera- of the International Monetary Fund, Horst Kohler, went to Brazil. After meeting with tives. "By making the ending of hunger his Lula, Kohler proclaimed that the incoming number one priority, Lula has inoculated president "is a leader for the twenty-first himself against many of his detractors," century." He even endorsed Lula' s call for says Menezes. As an expert on agrarian increased social spending and lamented issues, Menezes has been participating in J.P. Morgan's downgrading of Brazil's the planning meetings for the government's investment rating. One major area of discussion between campaign ' against hunger. He says the World Bank along with the United Nations the Bush administration and Lula in WashFood and Agricultural Organization have ington focused on the Free Trade Area of already informally committed their institu- the Americas (FTAA). Bush has made this tions to spending $5 billion over the next agreement the lynchpin of his Latin Amerifour years on the campaign against hunger. can policy, calling for all the countries of
Lula Checkmates Bush
the hemisphere (excepting Cuba) to begin reducing trade barriers in 2005. Lula has repeatedly expressed reservations about FTAA, asserting that it favors US domination of Latin America. Lula positioned himself strategically in the FTAA debate by meeting with regional allies before going to Washington. As Marcos Arruda, a foreign policy consultant to the incoming government notes, "Lula intentionally visited neighboring countries before visiting Bush to make it clear he would not grovel for US support and that Brazil has its own agenda and interests in South America." On December 2, Lula visited Argentina, Brazil's leading partner in Mercosur, the regional trade block that also includes Uruguay and Paraguay. Next he went to Chile, an associate member of Mercosur. In his major address in Buenos Aires, Lula called for a strengthening of Mercosur "so we can take control of our destiny" and end "our dependency on international currency flows." Lula, in Argentina as well as Chile, asserted that Mercosur should take priority over other trade agreements, and went on to call for a common currency among Mercosur nations and the formation of a regional Parliament. In Washington Lula was able to seize the commercial high ground by pointing to a series of US protectionist measures that actually run counter to authentic free trade. Approximately 25 percent of Brazil's exports valued at over $14 billions currently go to the United States. Twenty of the leading products face average US tariffs of 39 percent. If the trade barriers were removed on just four productsâ€”orange juice, steel, meat and soy productsâ€”it is estimated that annual Brazilian exports to the US would jump by $2 billion. Francisco Menezes of IBASE believes it is doubtful that the talks between Lula and Bush will actually lead to any significant reduction of U.S. trade barriers, particularly on products like orange juice. "Bush's brother Jeb as governor of Florida obviously has a stake in keeping out Brazilian juice because of his alliance with local orange growers." Moreover, Menezes worries that even the apparently favorable rapport between Lula and George W. Bush will soon sour. "With Iraq and the Middle East the administration has its hands full, it doesn't want to create a crisis with the Lula government for now. Bush is biding his time. He will wait for the inevitably deeper reactions of domestic and international interests opposed to Lula's progressive social policies before moving against the new government." Roger Burbach is co-editor, with Ben Clarke, of September 11 and the U.S. War (City Lights, 2002), and author of the forthcoming book The Pinoehet Affair: Globalizing Human Rights. He is director of the Center for the Study of the Americas (CENSA) in Berkeley, CA and can be reached at censaigc.org BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
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In Lula's Hand So far so good, but the new President is untried as a national leader and we do not know how he will cope with the constant crises which mark Brazil. Lula has little patience for the ins and outs of politics and seems incapable of sticking to a script. And he has to stop being a man of the people and become the leader of the people. JOHN FITZPATRICK
BRAZZIL - JANUARY
No sooner h d Fernando Henrique Cardoso handed over the presidential ash to Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva on New Year's Day (kno king his own glasses off in the excitement as headed for the airport and set off for Paris. he did so) than The haste with which he left Brasilia makes one wonder whether he kno s something the rest of us don't. Perhaps his abrupt departure after eight years may have been meant to show the Brazilian pe pie that they are on their own now with Lula and his team. S nce it is unlikely that Lula would seek any advice from his predecessor it may not matter that 'Cardoso practically fled, ut the manner in which he departed leaves a rather sour taste in the mouth. We are now n the hands of Lula and for the sake of Brazil let us hope he earns fast because theâ€˘ honeymoon is over. Electors will no onger be satisfied with the ear-to-ear grins And the tearful descr ptions of his life and hard times with which he has been regali g them since his victory in October. Behind the enes the PT team has been busy assembling a government. T is is obviously a complex process and appears to have been h died fairly well. At the same time, failing to win over the P DB, the largest party in the Congress, was a setback. Howe er, the PMDB is as greedy for power as any other party an this door has not been completely slammed shut. In the m nths to come we will start seeing shifting political al lian es as the familiar mosaic of Brazilian politics shapes and res apes itself. Despite the grouping of disparate parties in his el ction coalition, Lula' s government is top heavy with PT memb rs. , The key mi isters have started outlining their priorities in line with the T's electoral program. The focus will be on ending social i equality although with no drastic action such as defaulting on ternational or domestic debt obligations. Finance Minister Antonio Palocci, has said the right things and pledged to refo the scandalous situation in which millions of former civil se ants, some only in their 40s or early 50s, enjoy generous infla on-linked pensions, mainly paid for by those in the private sec or who have no such cushion to fall back on. In the first few days of the new administration we have already seen s me changes. For example, the state-owned oil company Petr bras, the largest company in South America, has had its boards aken up. The new chairman is a PT senator from the Northeast d the advisers include Finance Minister Palocci and Lula' s chi f of staff, Jose Dirceu. Moves have already been made to redu the effects of oil price increases on the final consumer by inkering with taxes. (To be fair here, even the Cardoso gove ment interfered in Petrobras's pricing policy at times, althoug it left the company in the hands of professionals rather than po iticians.) â€˘The new energy minister has spoken against further privatizations n the sector and of the need for more investment and lower pri es. The defense minister announced that Lula had suspende for a year a multi-million dollar contract to renew the Air Force's fleet of fighter planes. According to the minister, prio ity would be given to fighting hunger. So far so !Ai od, but your correspondent is still apprehensive and a bit fear of what lies ahead. Lula is untried as a national, as opposed ti a party, leader and we do not know how he will cope with the onstant crises which mark Brazil and the day-today political argaining in Congress. One must hope Lula will stick to the s ript and let his team, which appears to be fairly competent, g t on with things. The problem is that Lula has little patienc for the ins and outs of politics and seems incapable of ticking to a script. An example of the Lula style was the casu 1 manner in which he announced the name of his finance mini ter during a visit to Washington in December. 15
This was the key appointment eagerly awaited in Brazil yet Lula tossed it out to some journalists as though he was making a banal comment on the weather. The inaugural ceremony itself showed the perils of this informality. By bussing in hundreds of thousands of supporters from all the country, the PT enlivened the dreary avenues and concrete squares of Brasilia but gave the security forces a headache they could have done without. Lula's open-top car was soon swamped by well wishers, one of whom even managed to jump inside and give Lula a hug. Later, even when the security had been beefed up, a young woman still managed to get through and Lula posed for a picture with her. Presumably one of the bodyguards took the picture. During the inaugural ceremony in the Congress, House representative Severino Cavalcanti, from Pernambuco, whose constitutional role was to wind up the ceremony, started speaking off the cuff and congratulated Lula, who was born in the Northeast, as though they were in a bar. None of this mattered to Lula, who said at one point, "Vamos quebrar o protocolo mas nem tanto, hem?" ("We'll break with protocol but not too much.") Afterwards, Lula allowed every Tom, Dick and Harry congressman to give him a hug and slap on the back and even gave autographs. One wonders what Fernando Henrique Cardoso was thinking as he watched this display, while awaiting the arrival of Lula at the Planalto Palace to receive the sash of office. OK, it was Lula's big day but he will soon have to stop being a man of the people and become the leader of the people. Finally, it was disappointing to see that no major democratic leader took the pains to turn up at the ceremony. If George Bush was busy planning to invade Iraq then why did he not send his vice-president? In recent years the French, German and British government leaders have all visited Brazil and pledged to support the country's maturing democracy and efforts to get a fairer deal in international trade. But where were they on New Year's Day? At least the American trade secretary, Robert Zoellick, the man Brazilians love to hate, attended. The result of this pitiful turnout was that two high-profile despots, Fidel Castro of Cuba and Hugo Chavez of Venezuela, were the main "guests of honor." A sorry sight indeed when, for the first day since the return to democracy in Brazil, one elected president passed power over to another elected president.
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Where the Buck Stops Lula is putting politicians in charge of Brazil's money. Central Bank chief, Henrique Meirelles and Finance Minister, Antonio Palocci are abandoning elective mandates to take their new posts. By giving control of the nation's finances to two politicians, Lula is overturning the basis on which President Fernando Cardoso founded the economy. JOHN FITZPATRICK President-elect Luiz Mack) Lula da Silva has finally started naming his team, confirming expectations by making Antonio Palocci the finance minister, Jose Dirceu as chief of staff and nominating the former head ofBank Boston, Henrique Meirelles, as Central Bank chief. It is a sign of the changes that have occurred within the PT that the financial market greeted Me irelles' s name rather cautiously rather than with the delight such news would surely have brought a year ago. In contrast, Lula's decision to make Senator Marina Silva the environment minister was received ecstatically by the Green lobby abroad. Lula announced the two ministerial posts during a visit to Washington. The jocular way in which Palocci was confirmed—"As the Brazilian economy is in the intensive care unit then I have made a doctor the economy minister" (a reference to Palocci's profession)—makes one wonder whether this announcement was made off the cuff. One hopes so, because Lula's casual attitude does not augur well. Although the Brazilian economy may be ailing it is certainly not in the intensive care unit, and, without trying to be stuffy, surely this announcement merited more formality. The market and political reaction was positive but, at the same time, there is still much uncertainty. Until a few months ago, Palocci was virtually unknown outside the city of Ribeirao Preto where he was mayor. His administrative record is good and he has shown himself to be one of the PT's modernizers. For example, he sold off a publicly-owned telecommunications company, which the city owned, at a time when most PT politicians were against privatization. Palocci has obviously impressed Lula or he would not be heading the transition team and we must hope he retains Lula's support. At the same time, we must also hope he keeps Lula in line. As for Meirelles, although we at Brazzil — vvwvv.brazzil.com/p15oct02.htm— tipped him as a possible Central Bank boss a few months ago, he appears to have been chosen because other candidates turned the offer down. Meirelles headed Bank Boston's Brazilian operations for more than 10 years and did so well that he was made president of Bank Boston's entire operations. Without trying to belittle his BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
ability, this sounds grander than it was since Bank Boston was effectively taken over by Fleet shortly after Meirelles' appointment and became a subsidiary. Some market operators bemoaned Meirelles' lack of experience of monetary policy, while others said he did not understand how markets worked as well as the current president, Arminio Fraga. This may be true, but Fraga was always going to be a hard act to follow and Lula made a big tactical mistake by declaring at an early stage that he would not stay on under a PT government. Meirelles' international standing should help him deal with foreign investors and multinational institutions and, if he is good at delegating, then he should be able to appoint directors with the experience he lacks. The problem with Meirelles—and Palocci—is rather that they are politicians. Meirelles only recently turned to politics and was elected a deputy for the state of Goias as a member of President Fernando Henrique Cardoso's PSDB. The new Central Bank boss has virtually no experience of politics and could easily be swayed by Palocci, technically the person he reports to, and Lula. By giving control of the nation's finances to two politicians, Lula is overturning the basis on which Cardoso founded the economy in his two terms of office. Over the last eight years Brazil's Finance Minister has been Pedro Malan, himself a former Central Bank chief, a professional who is a member of no political party. For most of the second term the Central Bank chief has been Fraga, also a hands-on technician with no public political face. Malan has been firm during these two terms and followed a steady course, taking action on the many occasions when it was necessary, and ignoring the backseat drivers in Congress. He and Fraga combined to make a formidable team. If Palocci and Meirelles can do likewise then we can look ahead with optimism. Finally, let us also hope that the new Environment Minister, Marina Silva, will do a good job of protecting Brazil's natural resources and getting rid of its bad reputation abroad as a country which is destroying the Amazon rain forest and the lives of the indigenous people. Silva is a political .correct activist's dream—a woman of mixed race from a poor background in Acre. She was also an associate of Chico Mendes, the slain rubber tapper union leader who practically became a martyr for Greens all over the world. If good will matters then she is setting offwith better prospects than Palocci and Meirelles. John Fitzpatrick is a Scottish journalist who first visited Brazil in 1987 and has lived in Sao Paulo since 1995. He writes on politics and finance and runs his own company, Celtic Comunicacoes—www.celt.com.br, which specializes in editorial and translation services for Brazilian and foreign clients. You can reach him at jacelt.com.br You can also read John Fitzpatrick's articles in Infobrazil, at www.infobrazil.com BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
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Miss You, Fernando Brazilians live under threat and are easily intimidated. This belies the idea that Brazil is a laid-back, tolerant country. It is only laid back and tolerant because it allows you to do what you want but won't allow you to complain when somebody else does what he wants. Brazil needs a mental revolution. JOHN FITZPATRICK
My time in Brazil has coincided with the two Fernando Henrique Cardoso administrations and I will be sad to see him go, not only because he was a good president, but because it will mark the end of an epoch for me. I hope readers will let me indulge in a few personal comments on present-day Brazil which, despite the critical tone, are made with respect for the country which is now my permanent home. Cardoso leaves a different Brazil from the one he inherited but whether it is a better Brazil is unsure. Compared with his predecessors, such as Itamar Franco, Jose Sarney and Fernando Collor, Cardoso was a statesman. He was impressive enough to stand up on a world stage and, by being somewhat aloof domestically, generally rose above the unseemly fray, which constantly marked his uneasy coalition governments. His achievements included ending hyperinflation and privatizing sectors which had been run inefficiently by the state. He opened the Brazilian economy to the world although, whether he had any choice at a time of globalization, is another matter. Despite having to kowtow, at times, to unsavory political allies he maintained reasonably honest administrations. His calm approach helped Brazil weather a number of economic crises including the devaluation of the Real, the Asian and Russian crises, the collapse of Argentina and the ongoing world economic slump. Yet, for all that, he leaves much to be done economically and socially. That is why voters overwhelmingly chose the main opposition candidate, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva of the left-wing Workers Party, to be their new leader. No Brazilian president will quickly relieve the country of the appalling misery and poverty which marks the lives of so many of its inhabitants, nor stamp out the corruption and bureaucracy which makes the radical change needed so difficult. The weight of 500 years of history, during which the law has been treated with contempt, is simply too heavy to bear. It is almost impossible to see Brazil becoming an economic power like the United States, even though it has the same riches in terms of natural and human resources. Whereas the US developed dynamically to become the world's undisputed superpower within a century. Brazil has languished. Nor can one imagine the kind of overnight miracle which turned post-war Japan and Korea into economic superpowers. All kinds of hypotheses can be put forward â€” the pushy Protestant ethic in the US versus submissive Catholicism here, a weak colonial power without the resources to people such a vast territory, an unfair distribution of land, fragmented political parties, an insufficiently impartial judiciary, etc.â€” but the fact is that Brazil is languishing. It still does not have strong enough institutions nor a sufficiently educated population to make the vital step forward. For the foreseeable future Brazil will continue to be a sleeping giant, important only because of its size. Brazilians Need to Assume Personal Responsibility Personally speaking, I feel Brazil will not develop until there has been a mental revolution among the people. Brazilians need to develop their minds, change their cultural attitudes and assume more personal responsibility for their actions. Unlike the US experience, the great ethnic stew pot, of which Brazilians are so proud, has not produced a dynamic citizen ready to work hard and BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
defend his rights. This could arise from the fact that before mass immigration brought in millions of ambitious Italians, Spaniards,_ Arabs, Japanese, Jews, etc., a century ago, the bulk of the people were poorly educated and had no motivation to improve their lot. Centuries of oppression had made them passive rather than resistant and, in turn, they were overtaken by the pushier immigrants who transformed the south into the country's industrial heartland. The gap between the "newer" Brazilians and the "older" Brazilians is enormous. Millions of migrants from the Northeast come to the bigger cities to work but, in some ways, they are like the Turkish "guest workers" in Germany. These migrants are visible outsiders because, first of all, most are of mixed race whereas your average Paulistano is of European stock. Secondly, in cultural terms they are slow, easily intimidated and outsmarted by their southern countrymen. The Northeasterners do the menial work and most live in poorer districts or favela shanty towns. There are similarities with South Africa where blacks used to be restricted to certain areas. I visited Johannesburg at the height of the apartheid system and remember the daily mass movement of maids, gardeners, workmen, etc., to and from the townships like Soweto and Orlando to the white suburbs of Johannesburg. I still recall the sight of groups of black women, often carrying bundles on their heads, walking along the roads and flagging down rickety buses and communal taxis â€˘to take them to their homes miles away. The situation in Sao Paulo is not so different today, with hundreds of thousands of domestic workers, security men, shop girls heading back to places like Guarulhos and Osasco at the end of the day. There is no apartheid system here but the fact is that these Brazilians do not share the same benefits as their morerecently arrived, better-educated compatriots. This is not an attempt to blame the richer Paulistanos but to point to the fact that on one hand, the worse-off Brazilians are passive and accept their lot and, on the other hand, the better-educated part of society accepts an underclass as a normal part of life. "Foreigners, leave us alone and let us do things our own way!" Brazilians are also surprisingly lackBRAZZIL - JANUARY'2003
ing in self-confidence. A year ago I wr te an article for Brazzil, criticizing the la of response by the Brazilian public a government to the terrorist attacks in t US. I received around 80 replies, mai ly from Brazilians, ofwhich around 60w re critical ofmy stance and were anti-Am 1can. The overall feeling I had was o a self-pitying people who saw themsel es as the helpless victims of more power 1 forces. I could not believe that th se correspondents were living in the worl 'S 8th largest economy, a country with an envious potential. Much of the co espondence I receive from Brazilian re ders is along the lines of: "We're ot Americans or Europeans so leave us al ne to do things our own way". In a sense, one can understand is because Brazilians are used to feel ng helpless. Maybe having a former m tal worker like Lula in the presidential alace will change things but I doub it. Brazilians are treated scandalously ot only by their political rulers but als in their daily lives. Visit any bank and ou will find a long queue. Armed guards ill screen you and, if a metal detector es off when you try to go through the rev lving doors you will be publicly humili ted by having to empty your bag and turn out your pockets. Go into a post office and after q euing for 20 minutes be told that it ha no stamps. Travel on a municipal bus nd hope, for the sake of your backbone, it is new because until recently many b ses had chasses designed to carry freight not human beings. Done' 1 't even thin of using a train (except the Metro and the CPTM) because they are ancient, irty and frequented by thieves. Ask a tra esman to do a repair on Monday mo ing and he will turn up on Tuesday aftern on with the wrong tools. Arrange a business meeting an the person will arrive half an hour late ithout any apology. Try and park in s me areas and a lurking semi-criminal ill offer to "look after" your car, provi mg you pay him of course. If you refuse you and/or your car will be damaged. Don't expect the law to help because the p o lice will do nothing and some will b in cahoots with the thug who makes a ood living out of intimidating motorists
cently I was roughed up by a lout after complaining when he pushed his way to the front of a queue in a corner bakery. No-one else objected to his behavior and, when we had our altercation, no-one interfered. Even the owner of the shop and his assistants stayed out of it. Another time a beggar type entered a bus without paying and started spitting on the floor. When I told him to stop he became abusive. Once again no-one, including the driver or bus conductor backed me up. This is typical. I have lost count of the number of times I have had arguments with motorists who have gone through red lights while I was crossing the street. Brazilians do not behave as Europeans or Americans would because they are frightened that the other person will react violently. The everyday reality is that the Brazilian lives under threat and is easily intimidated. This belies the idea that Brazil is a laid-back, tolerant country. It is only laid back and tolerant because it allows you to do what you want but won't allow you to complain when somebody else does what he wants. So if you see someone drop a McDonald's carton in the middle of the street don't say anything because he won't complain if you do the same. It goes well beyond dropping litter, of course. If you see a middle-aged man blatantly trying to seduce two under-age girls, as I once saw in a hotel in Manaus, then don't do anything because if he sees you doing it then he won't interfere. When you do insist in complaining, the Brazilian generally refuses to admithe has done anything wrong and, in many cases, the confrontation becomes violent. The Brazilian, therefore, avoids con-
Stand Up for Your Rights? on Must be Joking? As a foreigner I constantly corn lain but rarely get support from Brazil ans, even when they are suffering too. Re19
frontation and by doing so sweeps the dirt under the carpet and avoids reality. The election of Lula may be a breakthrough in this sense, as people are finally standing up for themselves and voting for someone who is honest and a fighter. When the military were intimidating Brazilians, it was the organized car workers, led by Lula, who defied them, not the middle-class intellectuals whose attempts at forming urban guerrilla bands got nowhere. The estimated 300,000 people who held a mass meeting in front of Sao Paulo's cathedral in the Praca da Se in January 1984 to demand direct elections were showing a fighting spirit, which is generally, sadly, missing. As already mentioned, Brazilians do not like to assume responsibility. On the day of the first round of voting, a truck collided with a bus and a car in the northeastern state of Sergipe. A total of 29 people were killed, most burned alive, and around 20 others injured. The truck driver jumped out of his vehicle and ran away. This is an extreme but not untypical example of how Brazilians will try to save their own skin, even to the extent of leaving people dying in front of their eyes. In Recife, about 12 years ago, I saw a car which was going too fast knock over a woman and just drive on. I think the woman was actually decapitated by the force of the collision. A driver in Sao Paulo recently drove into a motorbike, knocking off the cyclist and his girlfriend, because he thought the rider had once robbed him. The motorcyclist was innocent but the driver then sped off on a mad dash across the city, driving on pavements, knocking other people down, racing through streets on the wrong side of the road and crossing onto other lanes, regardless of the consequences. Miraculously, no-one on was killed. When the driver was finally caught by the police and taken into custody his son told reporters that his father had done nothing wrong and gs criticized the police for shooting out the tires of the speeding car. Look what the Brazilian has to endure in just voting. By law, fixed by politicians who pay scant attention to the laws they themselves pass, voting is compulsory. In the first round of the latest presidential election, many voters queued for hours in temperatures over 30 degrees Celsius in the streets of sao Paulo, which were littered with unread political propaganda. They then waited in cramped school hallways and when they finally got to the ballot station and had problems understanding the complicated procedure — remember people were also voting for 20
governors, senators and federal deputies — the assistants were generally the kind of vacant young girls who make checking in at any reception area in Brazil an ordeal. Any question is met with a look of blank incomprehension, followed by a consultation with another dim-witted bimbo who generally knows even less. Sio Paulo's Streets of Shame A walk down almost any street in Sao Paulo shows what the Brazilian has to put up with. Not only will the pavement be broken and filthy, strewn with litter and dog dirt, but the road will be uneven, with potholes, and likely to flood during the rainy season. The litter, which people casually throw on the street, adds to the misery as it is washed away and blocks the drainage system, which is inefficient in any case. Unless the pedestrian is walking through an extremely rich area, the buildings will be scrawled with graffiti. In many areas the pedestrian will be unable to walk on the pavement as it has been taken over by stalls selling cheap items, most of which are contraband. Every so often the city government will send out a force to get rid of the street vendors but this is a cynical exercise in public relations because as soon as the men from the council have gone the vendors are back. These street vendors are often violent and, when thwarted, will smash the windows of neighboring shops and go on the rampage. They pay no taxes but use the social security system financed by the shopkeepers whose windows they have smashed. Motorcyclists will ride on the pavement, regardless of pedestrians, to avoid traffic jams. As for security, the Brazilian does not depend on the state to protect him. Recent events in Rio de Janeiro have shown that drug traffickers can almost paralyze parts of the city at will. If some adolescent gang leader is killed they can order inhabitants and businesses to close down as a sign of "respect". Politically important buildings have been attacked by machine-gun-wielding gangsters, grenades have been lobbed, groups offavela dwellers have been kidnapped and ordered to go to prisons, as human shields, while the gangsters organized break outs. The police are so inefficient and untrustworthy that most people don't even report muggings even when arms are used. Known murderers walk free. The Folha de S. Paulo recently ran an article on clandestine cemeteries in a Rio favela where gangsters dumped the bodies of their victims. As most victims are
local people, the police make no real effort to track down the murderers. In one case, cited by the paper, a woman spoke of how her teenage son had gone out one day with his girlfriend and neither of them had ever been seen again. She was sure they had been killed by the girl's former boyfriend whom she knew. Will Lula be the new Getalio Vargas or Juscelino Kubitschek? No Chance. How Brazilians cope with all this and remain cheerful is a mystery. However, one thing I have learned since coming to live here is that no-one will change the Brazilian mentality by force. The country has an extraordinary ability to absorb all kinds of cultures and influences and make it native. Whereas the US is full of hyphenated citizens e — Irish-Americans, Italian-Americans, Polish-Americans — Brazil is full of Brazilians, regardless of where their parents or grandparents came from. So, if the Brazilian is to change his mentality, then it will need a Brazilian to make him do so. In the 20± century, two presidents stamped themselves on Brazil and brought about profound changes in society: Gettllio Vargas, who dominated the country from 1930 to 1954 and created the Estado Novo (New State), and Juscelino Kubitschek, who ruled from 1955 until 1960 under the slogan "Fifty years in five" aimed at rapid economic development. Present-day Brazil is still marked by their terms of office, for good or bad. Whether Lula will be able to follow in their footsteps and force his countrymen to create a "new state" or cram 50 years' development into five is doubtful because he does not have the vision of Kubitschek or the intellectual flexibility ofGettidio Vargas, who managed to found a state based on the fascist corporatism of Mussolini's Italy yet, at the same time, declared war against Italy and Germany and sent Brazilian troops to fight in Italy alongside the Allies. John Fitzpatrick is a Scottish journalist who first visited Brazil in 1987 and has lived in SAo Paulo since 1995. He writes on politics and finance and runs his own company, Celtic Comunicacties—www.celt.com.br, which specializes in editorial and translation services for Brazilian and foreign clients. You can reach him at iaselt.com.br You can also read John Fitzpatrick's articles in Infobrazil, at www.infobrazil.com BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
who had no understanding of The inauguration of the inflation problem. SurprisLuiz !flack) Lula da Silva ingly, the Workers Party also as President of Brazil on had no plan for ending inflaJanuary 1S1 was an importion, despite the scores of briltant historical milestone. liant economists and intellecFor the first time, a man of tuals in its ranks. It was too working class origins and WV% big S.O.S.l.4. focused on labor struggles and leftist politics is leading just advocated raising wages Latin America's largest more rapidly to keep up with nation. His election and the the rise in prices. In desperasmooth transition of power tion, Franco asked Sao Paulo validate Brazil's demosociologist Fernando Henricratic system and give the que Cardoso, then foreign minlong frustrated Brazilian ister, to take over the finance Left a chance to put its ministry. ideas into practice. In the To everyone's astonishcampaign, Lula's Workers ment, Cardoso put together a Party promised to break plan that actually solved the with the "neoliberal, hyperinflation. This feat made Washington Consensus" him a shoo-in for the presipolicies that have predomidency in 1994, once again frusnated in Latin America for trating Lula and the left. By at least a decade. If they 1998, Cardoso's anti-inflation succeed in implementing a plan was in crisis and the left new economic model, it thought that his policies had will be an important prefailed just as Collor's had. But cedent for Latin America the voters were too frightened and the developing world. to change captains in the midst But political and ecoof a storm and Cardoso surnomic constraints do not prised everyone again by pullA partir de agora, comeoa a cob.anoa allow much room for maing the country through. neuver. Even before asCommon Visions suming office Lula was By 2002, Lula and the Workers Party warning Brazilians that the first year had to admit that many of Cardoso's would be one of austerity. He blamed the policies were working better than they preceding administration for leaving the had expected. They were sick and tired of country burdened with debt and other losing, so they decided to bite the bullet problems. But blaming past leaders can and make the changes needed to win. only go so far. Lula and the Workers They purged the Trotslcyists from the Party have promised Brazilians that they party and adopted a. platform that was can change the country's economic model close to that of Cardoso's Social Demoso as to accelerate economic growth, cratic Party. lessen inequality and improve the quality Lula dressed in tailored suits and of life. What are they likely to do, and spoke reassuringly about shared visions. how likely are they to succeed? Most importantly, he promised to honor Although the Workers Party has a the commitments Brazil had made to the reputation as a critic of free market ecoInternational Monetary fund, including nomics, this is largely a matter of its past. maintaining limits on government spendThe party was able to win the 2002 presiing and keeping up the payments on dential election because it put aside its Brazil's debts. He held endless meetings radical past and adopted political views with business leaders, assuring them that much like those of the preceding adminhe could run Brazil's capitalist economy istration. Lula had lost presidential races Everything Lula has d me better than the capitalists had done. in 1990, 1994 and 1998, largely because confirms his intention to live ith With these changes, the Workers Party he was too radical for most Brazilian as moved into the same political space as the free market reforms Brazil voters. The winner in 1990 was Fernando Collor, a telegenic young governor of the made over the last fifteen ye rs. Cardoso's Social Democratic Party. But small northeastern state of Alagoas. He has built a center-left coali ion Lula's history as a labor leader, and the party's roots in the Catholic and socialist Collor seduced the electorate with and plans to follow Cardo o's left, gave it greater credibility. Workers smoothly delivered promises to wipe the to Party activists have a remarkable tradislate. clean of inflation and corruption. example and is even ope But his anti-inflation policy collapsed negotiating a free trade agree ent tion of commitment to the party as an organization. The other Brazilian politiand he was impeached for corruption. with the US. cal parties are largely shifting alliances Power then fell to the vice president. of independent politicians. Once the party hamar Franco, a traditional politician
LULA DE MEL
So, This Is Lula?
TED GOERT ZEL
BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
shed its radical rhetoric, voters were happy to welcome it to the mainstream. At the same time as Lula reassured the businessmen and middle classes of his responsibility, he appealed to populist impulses with promises to change the country's "economic model," lower inflation and interest rates, cut unemployment, and stimulate economic growth. He promised to end hunger, stating that his life's aspiration would be achieved when every Brazilian had three meals every day. He promised to step up the agrarian reform, distributing even more land than Cardoso had done, all the while protecting the environment and guaranteeing the rights of Brazil's indigenous peoples. Lula's main opponent, Jose Serra, of Cardoso's Social Democratic Party, tried to point out the vagueness of Lula's promises and to provide more specific plans of his own. But the voters did not want to hear about difficulties. They were looking for inspiration, for empathy, for someone with a positive vision of the future. They preferred to suspend doubt, hoping that somehow Lula would find a way to deliver on his promises, confident that he would try his best. The Workers Party's electoral strategy was a resounding success. In the run-off on October 27, Lula won 61 percent ofthe vote to Serra's 39 percent. His supporters danced in the streets of Sao Paulo. Much more significant, however, was the general enthusiasm throughout the society. Everyone wished Lula the best of luck. Outgoing President Fernando Henrique Cardoso, who had refrained from attacking Lula during the campaign, stated that he was emotionally stirred by the election of a working class leaderto the nation's presidency. The jubilation in Sao Paulo was reminiscent of Caracas in 1998 and Lima in 2001 when similarly overwhelming majorities elected populist Hugo Chavez and social democrat Alejandro Toledo. These leaders promised more than they could deliver, as if all that was needed was good intentions. Now Chavez is fighting off coup attempts and general strikes, while Toledo's ratings in the public opinion polls have fallen to the 30 percent's from the 60 percent's a year ago. Lula knows that he faces a similar risk. Late in the campaign, when mass enthusiasm was at its peak, he began warning audiences that he could not perform miracles and that it would take time for his policies to bear fruit. Brazilians will give Lula time, but eventually he will have to deliver on his 22
promises of increased prosperity, especially for those in most need. Fortunately, there are several things working in his favor. His political party is more sophisticated and better organized than any other in Latin America and he has highly competent advisors. Although Brazil has large social and racial inequalities, politics has not polarized along those lines to the extent that it has in many other Latin American countries. The international financial community is eager for Brazil to succeed, and the IMF has extended a generous credit line. Although Lula does not have a majority in Congress, the opposition is responsible and willing to cooperate, even though the Workers Party was less much less cooperative when it was in opposition. Perhaps most important, Brazil has already completed important structural reforms that are essential to Lula's success but that could never have been completed by a Workers Party president. Cardoso's Legacy Lulahas his political rival, Fernando Henrique Cardoso, to thank for many difficult and essential reforms that give him the ability to govern effectively. In addition to ending hyperinflation and maintaining monetary and fiscal discipline throLigh some very difficult international crises, Cardoso got the Congress to pass a fiscal responsibility law that strongly controls federal, state and local government spending, in striking contrast to neighboring Argentina. In assuming state debts and protecting the currency, however, he ran up internal debt and raised interest rates to levels that limit the country's options. Inefficient state industries have been privatized, including the state banks that fueled inflation with irresponsible loans to state governments. The Brazilian monetary and banking systems are reasonably sound. The civil service has been cut back, reformed and modernized. Non-governmental organizations have played a new and creative role in education and social programs. The Workers Party bitterly contested most of these reforms during the eight years of Cardoso' s administration. They attacked Cardoso as a "neoliberal" and insisted that they could do better with an economic inodel that "took the social as its axis" and gave more weight to human needs than to bankers and corporations. They argued that Brazil could have grown more rapidly during the Cardoso years if government planners had exerted more control over business inter-
ests. The Workers Party platform optimistically asserts that Brazil has a "vocation" to grow at a rate of 7 percent of year, and blames the "neoliberals" for not letting it do so. Brazilians would like to believe that a change in economic policy could bring back the rapid growth the country experienced during the days ofthe "Brazilian Miracle" in the 1960s and 1970s. Those were years of military dictatorship and the Brazilian military then believed in strong state guidance of the economy, just as the Workers Party does now. Indeed, the Workers Party platform expresses remarkable nostalgia for the economic policies of the military dictatorship. But there are no miracles in economics. The "Brazilian Miracle" was fueled by excessive borrowing of petrodollars and inflationary government spending. This led to hyperinflation and the "lost decade" of the 1980s. Brazil does not generate the domestic savings needed to sustain 7 percent economic growth. The only way to generate sustained rapid growth is with a massive flow of foreign investment, which is what the Workers Party bitterly criticized Cardoso for trying to do. - Brazil has tried government planning before with unfortunate results. The e.lectricity failures in 2001 were largely due to faulty planning by government energy planners who relied too much on hydroelectric power. In the 1970s, the government decided to switch much of Brazil's automotive fleet to ethanol in anticipation of a world oil crisis. But oil prices went down and ethanol prices went up, causing a collapse in the market for ethanol powered cars. In the 1980s, Brazil protected its domestic computer market from foreign competition. As a result, the country missed the chance to become a major player in the global computer industry. Of course, businessmen also make mistakes. But switching to government planning is risky and adds the cost of state employees to administer the plans. A system that gives increased powers to government officials also creates more opportunities for corruption. Corruption was rampant under the military, despite their supposed organizational discipline and patriotism. The Workers Party believes that it can control corruption, and it has a good record in that regard in the states and municipalities where it has held power. But increasing the economic powers of government officials in a country with Brazil's culture and history is risky. BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
Reviving Industry Cardoso brought down inflation and modernized the economy by forcing Brazilian companies to compete with foreign imports and by selling inefficient state enterprises. This had an unavoidable cost in unemployment as employers downsized their work forces. But it was necessary to make the Brazilian economy competitive and the Workers Party leaders understand that, even though they opposed it at the time. The Workers Party does not want to go back to protectionism. It proposes to increase employment by reviving Brazil's consumer goods industries with cheaper credit and other incentives. But the resources needed to do this will be available only if the economy is growing rapidly. With everything so dependent on economic growth, the Workers Party simply cannot do anything to alienate either the Brazilian or the international business community. In the campaign, Lula blamed Cardoso for making the country too vulnerable to speculative capital, much of which left as abruptly as it came in response to global crises. Lula promised to impose increased controls on speculative capital. This is the conventional wisdom today, advocated by Chile and Singapore and even by the IMF, as well as by Brazil, so some controls may be instituted on paper. But they will be largely symbolic because domestic capital markets cannot provide nearly enough resources for the greatly increased growth the country needs and expects. If Lula is to fulfill his promises he will need to attract significant foreign investment, just as Cardoso did. He cannot afford the luxury of turning investment away simply because it might leave when conditions change. If Lula is unable to cut unemployment quickly enough through economic growth, there will be strong political pressure to save jobs by protecting Brazilian markets from foreign competition and by hiring more workers in state enterprises. This would appeal to nationalist sentiments, and it could easily be justified as retaliation for American protection of its markets for steel, orange juice and other commodities. But it would be a setback in Brazil's efforts to become a highly productive, incompetitive ternationally economy. An early example of the kinds of pressure Lula faces came from BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
hamar Franco, the former president wh appointed Fernando Henrique Cardo as finance minister in 1963. Aft r Franco's presidential term ended, e was elected governor of the state f Minas Gerais. As governor, he dec id d it was simply too burdensome to ma e payments on the state's debts. The ban ers could wait. He would pay the polic men and schoolteachers. He proud y announced his refusal to pay his bills o the federal government, touching if Brazil's 1999 financial crisis. Cardoso stood up to Franco, enforc d the fiscal responsibility laws, and brou ht the country through the crisis. In doi g so, Cardoso squashed Franco's hopes if running for President in 2002, so Fran o supported Lula in the 2002 elections. s soon as Lula was elected, Franco ask d him to declare that the states would ot have to pay their debts to the fede al government. Brazilian states have a long hist ry of running up debts and then expectS g the federal government to print mo ey to pay them off. This enables them to pay state employees, but it creates in ation that eats away at the living st ndards of the poor and politically unc nnected. Lula wisely refused to make ny such promises. Computer Technology The better way to create empl yment is to develop new, internation Ily competitive, export-oriented industr es. Under the economic theory espouses by
the Workers Party platform, the state should be able to select the most promising industries and use its resources to promote them. But the state has few resources to spare, and many political demands to meet. What industry would the planners favor? The only suggestion in the Workers Party platform is computer technology. This is an obvious choice to spearhead development in the 21s1 century. and the Brazilians are impressed by the success of countries such as China, Korea, and India in exporting computer hardware and software. But Brazil has still not recovered from the Brazilian state's last attempt to regulate the computer industry. The legacy of that failed policy hangs on in the form of high prices for computers assembled in the country from imported components. These prices make it difficult for Brazilians of limited means to purchase home computers, strengthening the digital divide. Brazil has world-class university computer science departments and programs to help high-tech entrepreneurs get around the high costs of doing business in Brazil. But protection for intellectual property is ineffective, so it is difficult to make money writing software for the Brazilian market. Microsoft Windows and Word have a market dominance that is perhaps even greater than in the United States because the general public uses pirated software while corporations and government agencies pay for it. There is a movement in the high-tech community to replace Windows and Word with Linux and Star Office and other open source software. But consumers are resistant. They would rather use Microsoft software that they can get for next to nothing on the black market. Many government offices are changing to Linux, and Workers Party activists would love to take on the Microsoft monopoly. But this is probably not the best way to build a world-class software industry in Brazil. For that, the country needs lower business costs, cheaper hardware and better protection for intellectual property. It needs to work closely with international software companies and in harmony with international trends. Going off on an antiMicrosoft crusade might be selfdefeating. The Brazilian hightech industry might do best if the 23
subsidies needed to live on it. The Cardoso administration modernized the agrarian reform bureaucracy and greatly accelerated the settlement of families, at considerable cost. But the Landless Farmer's Movement expects Lula to do more. They want to move from export-oriented commercial agriculture to small farms and sustainable domestic-oriented production. But Brazil simply cannot afford to cut its highly profitable agricultural exports. Another issue that must be confronted quickly is social security reform, a problem that Cardoso was politically unable to solve. This is a difficult issue for the Workers Party because the conflict is not between capitalists and proletariat but between taxpayers and civil servants. Brazilian social security benefits are very modest for the general public, but very generous for public employees. Brazil spends more on retired civil servants than on health, education and TENIPERATURA GLOBAL DEVERA RATER RECORDER Elvt 2003 â€˘ PAG1NA 42 public security combined. Female civil servants retire as young as 48, males at 53, and they receive 100 percent of their last salary. Opposition from public employee unions stymied Cardoso's efforts at reform. Lula has made social security reform one of his first priorities and his background gives him the credibility to do it if anyone can. But the civil servants are a main bulwark of the Workers Party, and they expect Lula to make up for the MuItIaba taw as was na posae dOpresabente, qua ye rears:oath:Ida pais canna meanÂ° losses they experienced under Cardoso. Lula has promised to protect the "acquired rights" of current government employees. This means that for the next decade or two much of Brazil's desperately needed resources will be eaten up by civil servants that retire at full Rasinha ataca Benettila pay at the peak of their productive years. Tax reform is another major issue confronting Lula, although the Fernando Henrique Cardoso government did make significant progress in modernizing Brazil's 1111111111111111111EEDRIEEDIMMINI tax structure. Tax collection is largely centralized in the federal government and resources are disafford to subsidize small farmers, but tributed according to strict formulas. The Brazil's resources are much more lim- federal government collects 67 percent ofthe taxes, but keeps only 57 percent, of ited. The larger commercial farms are much which 43 percent goes to social security more productive, but the anti-capitalist programs. The states and municipalities control left attacks them as exploiters. There have been many bitter struggles between 40 percent of total government revenue, landowners and landless workers who and federal tax sharing provides a higher believe they should be given land and the share of revenue to the poorer regions of government limits itself to funding education and research and enforcing its intellectual property laws instead of trying to impose development guidelines. Needed Reforms While high technology is more important to the country's future, the Workers Party would rather talk about land reform. The driving force here is the Landless Farmer's Movement, a militant group organized by Catholic leftists. The Movement has been effective in promoting its cause, both in Brazil and abroad, but its fundamental economic strategy is flawed. The problem is that it simply costs a great deal to subsidize small farms. The real struggle is not for land, which is plentiful, but for subsidies. Without subsidies, land reform just creates shantytowns in the countryside. Wealthy countries in Europe and North America can
Povo segue Lula e testemunha o seu compromisso por mudangas
the country. But the tax system is regressive and income taxes account for too small a share of government revenue. The problem is simply that no one wants to pay more taxes, so reforms come only when a crisis brings a sense of urgency. On Cardoso's Steps The Workers Party naturally hopes to expand and improve needed social programs. Their plans are sensible and quite similar to the programs Brazil has been following for the last eight years. This is not a bad thing since Brazil made impressive progress on social indicators during the Cardoso administration. Poverty, hunger and inequality declined. The nation's score on the United Nations Human Development Index improved. Enrollment in all levels of education increased, life expectancy increased, and mortality from AIDS declined. Agricultural production increased sharply. Land reform was accelerated, with many more families settled than in any previous administration. Compensation was paid to families whose children "disappeared" during the military dictatorship. Programs to protect indigenous Brazilians and the Amazon environment were greatly expanded. But violent crime is getting worse, and the public will insist that it be given priority over other social issues. Drug wars are rampant, and drug gangs are out of control. The problem is not confined to ghetto neighborhoods. Drug kingpins were able to shut down retail business in Rio de Janeiro for a day to protest having their prison cell phone privileges cut off. Kidnapping has become commonplace, afflicting working and middle class communities as well as the wealthy. The Workers Party has excellent criminologists and understands that not all crime can be attributed to poverty and inequality. It wants to modernize and improve the law enforcement agencies. But the left has no unique insights in this area. Police officers are woefully underpaid, which makes corruption difficult to suppress. Again, progress depends on finances that can only come from economic growth. It is easy to make promises in a campaign, especially when one assumes that 7 percent annual economic growth will generate the revenue to pay for them. Making hard choices about priorities within realistic fiscal restraints is much harder. When pushed for specifics in the campaign debates, Lula usually responded that he would call together all the interested parties and get them to agree on a solution. He is labor leader who knows how to BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
conduct negotiations, not a lawyer accustomed to writing legislation, and this change in style may be helpful. The Workers Party has always stressed active citizen participation in public decision making. In cities and states where the Workers Party has held office, many decisions are made through "participatory budgeting" where each item is subjected to lengthy discussion in open public meetings. But people get tired of going to meetings. Arguments between factions can get tiresome. These problems contributed to the surprising defeat ofthe Workers Party in its most prized stronghold, the southernmost state of Rio Grande do Sul. The loss of the election for governor was particularly embarrassing because Porto Alegre, the state capital, is famous as the meeting place of the World Social Forum, a group that advocates anti-glo balization ideas. The gubernatorial election was lost because of factional splits within the Workers Party, because many citizens became tired of endless meetings and ideological posturing, and because the state lost a new Ford plant to the northeastern state of Bahia. Leftists within the Workers Party were proud of standing up to Ford's demands, but the reality is that, despite its antiglobalization rhetoric, the Rio Grande do Sul Workers Party government relied on multinational corporations to fuel economic growth in the state. Brazil simply cannot afford to alienate multinational corporations that are considering making substantial investments in the country. Choosing Sides The left of the Workers Party was disciplined enough not to draw attention to contradictions between Lula's nationalist rhetoric and his economic commitments during the election campaign. Many key issues were papered over with terminology that can be given either a socialist or a social democratic interpretation. But as soon as the election was over, Lula had to start committing himself, most explicitly in his choices for key Cabinet positions. One of his first announcements was the appointment of the former head of BankBoston, Henrique Meirel les, as president of the Central Bank. This made it crystal clear that he was committed to responsible financial management as defined by the IMF, the World Bank and other global entities. The objections of the left wing of the Workers Party were noted, but overruled. Lula's other appointments were balanced and well received, with the left receiving recognition in areas such as culture and environBRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
mental defense, but kept away from t e tional interest. They may be able to inspire a new ethos that values contributing crucial finance and economic ministrie to the country more than seeking perEverything Lula has done confi sonal benefits. Perhaps some civil serhis intention to live with the free mark vants will volunteer to give the country reforms Brazil has made over the la the full benefit of their expertise, instead fifteen years. He has built a center-le political coalition, sharing power wi h of retiring early to take second jobs. Perhaps some women will feel ethically other parties. He plans to folio obligated to work an equal number of Cardoso's example by maintaining a di log with civil society and modernizing social programs and welcoming productive foreign investment. He is even open to negotiating a free ononez..p.HOWerlespeatuaiiiik..inotooPoiNiOlfsatorem.SMAII.o.wmtoo,,,tow trade agreement with the United States, a policy he denounced during the campaign. Brazil's situation today is similar to Chile's in the 1980s when an economic downturn caused many to feel that the "neoliberal" model had failed. But Chile decided to stick with its model and make it work. It is both South America's most "neoliberar economy and its most successful one in terms of both economic and social indicators. This example is not lost on Lula and the Workers Party leaders, especially when contrasted to the problems in the rest of South America.
FOLI14 DE SSPAULO
ula assume Presidenda e controle das ansiedades socials'
Change and Continuity
Lula's government will be one of continuity, with modest and carefully considered changes. He will easily manage the disappointment of the ideological leftists remaining within his party, some of whom may split offto join one of the radical left parties, or to form a new one. The more serious threat comes from traditional businessmen, government years for equal benefits. functionaries and civil servants. Perhaps there will be less tax evasion, They will use nationalist and soci list rhetoric to advocate a return to the s tist fewer attempts to bribe public officials, and protectionist policies of the past, more willingness to accept flexibility, in policies that benefit them at the expense work rules, and a greater appreciation of of inflation and lower living standards entrepreneurs. The most important outfor the poor. If the country goes into an come of the 2002 elections will not be economic downturn, which might hap- radical change. It may be a new sense of pen for reasons out of Lula's control, dedication to making the system work. their pressures could be difficult to resist. A translation of this article, entitled In opposition, the Workers P gty â€˘ "0 Legado de FHC e o Brasil de Lula" helped to maintain the myth that was published in the daily Folha de S. "neoliberalism" was responsible for the Paulo on January 5, 2003. country's problems and that a nationalist industrial policy would be preferable. Ted Goertzel, Ph.D. is Professor Now that they are in power, they 4ave of Sociology at Rutgers University faced up to the fact that the country needs in Camden, NJ. He is the author resources that can only come from teof a biography of Fernando Henrique Cardoso, available in gration in the global economy. The imEnglish and in Portuguese. portant thing is to use those reso ces He can be contacted at well and here the Workers Party h s an goertzelAcamden.rutgers.edu important advantage. and his WEB page can be found at Workers Party activists have alladhtta://eoertzelorrited mirable record of dedication to th4 na25
It Al Started i Caet Lula journeyed from a little Ceara town to Brasilia's Presidential Palace, from migrant to President. A march 500 years in the making. If Lula had a Ph.D., he would be a president like all the others. His merit is to have matured without changing sides. CRISTOVAM BUARQUE 26
For years the Portuguese aristocracy kept hundreds of joiners, masons and other workers involved in the construction of their caravels; they also used farmers and merchants to prepare the supplies needed for the long voyages, during which thousands of lower-class men died in shipwrecks. If the adventure proved successful, it was the Portuguese noblemen who took charge of the new lands and the commercial profits. Brazilian history is the narrative of each era's elite appropriating the product of lowerclass labor. Over the centuries the products and the names ofthose profiting have changed but the anonymous producers have continued to be treated with disdain and left without schools, housing, leisure time, and even food. The anonymous people, working and excluded; the elite, controlling and enjoying the product of that work. Presidents replaced the emperors; the counts and barons turned into "doctors" and "Excellencies," who were still separated from the lower classes that elected them and waited upon them. Even before his government takes office, therefore, Lula's election as President is a true symbol of change. His trip to the cities of Caetes and Garanhuns demonstrates this difference. In 1952, at the age of seven, young ula left Garanhuns as a migrant. At the age of 57, he returned as President-elect. But he did not return as a different person, someone who had grown wealthy, become a doctor, and joined the elite, someone who was returning merely through a sort ofatavistic courtesy. When he returned he was older, he was famous and experienced, but he was still the same Lula. This is Lula's great victory: winning without changing. Although this is the first time amigrant has been elected president, there have been others who were sons of the lower middle class and even of the poor. None of the principal presidential candidates of 2002 was a child of the wealthy class, but all of the others had paid tribute to the elites. Lula paid none of the prices charged by the elite to accept and legitimize the children ofthe poor. He did not grow wealthy, did not serve the wealthy, did not graduate from a university, and did not repudiate his past as a labor organizer. Many people criticize Lula for not taking advantage of his enormous potential, his privileged intelligence, to study formally and earn a university diploma. But if Lula had a Ph.D., he would be a president like all the others. Over the years, many have criticized Lula's radicalism, his attachment to a clearly leftist BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
party. But ifhe had come to power through one of the conservative parties, Lula would be a president like any other. His merit is to have matured without changing sides. As he himself said in his speech in Caetes, the story of his life is more important than his electoral victory. And this story was the backdrop for one of the most emotional journeys ever made by a Brazilian in public life. When, a little before eight at night, we left Brasilia for Recife in a small executive jet, we could see the full moon through the pilots' windshield. It resembled a target awaiting the arrow transporting us. There was a strong symbolism in this: an airplane carrying a people's hero in the direction of his own people. At no time during the flight did Lula resemble the person who a few hours later would cry twice before the assembled multitudes. He appeared to be neither worried about the responsibilities that awaited him nor emotional about his return to the land from which he left as a migrant and to which he was returning as President-elect. As we flew from Recife to Garanhuns early the next afternoon, he spoke a bit about his past life and the days ahead of us in the government but did not show any great emotion. That did not happen until, as we came in for a landing, we could see the enormous line of cars and the crowds of people waiting on the runway and surrounding the terminal of the tiny airport. When the airplane door opened, the crowd shouted as if the people were simultaneously welcoming a cousin returning victorious, a hero arriving in glory, and, above all, someone bearing hope. Along the road from the airport to downtown Garanhuns, the crowd shouted out Lula' s name, even though they did not know exactly in which car he was riding. Some yelled messages: "God protect you;" "Viva Lula"; "Welcome, Brother"; "I'm your Cousin." As he gave his speech, his emotions came to the surface. He spoke of his memories of the short time he spent in those lands as a child and, above all, of his commitment to the Northeast, accusing the elite of responsibility for the drought, for the poverty, for abandoning the region. The people in the crowd below kept absolutely quiet, but from time to time would suddenly shout out their support, as if led by an invisible orchestra conductor. There was a clear union of the people and the speaker. Not the apparent union that is seen between the people and populist politicians, but the union ofthe people BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
with someone who, although totally d fferent, is one of them. That is what L la is: both a leader and the people. Althou h as a leader he is different, at the sa e time he is one of the people. The Pre ident is the son of Dona Lindu. Ma y people cried; others laughed; all of th m watched with affection and hope reflect d in their faces, something never bef re seen in Brazilian political history. The big party was still to come in Caetes. This city was part of Garanh ns in 1952. Between the two cities wa a plaque saying, "Birthplace of Lula, he President" and another indicating the ay to the farm where he was born and Ii ed until the age of seven. Another signs.id, "Thank you, Dona Lindu, for giving bii h to hope." And there were his cousi s' banners. These were cousins who perhaps w re not blood relatives. Cousins in the se se of society's brothers and sisters who re equals, companions, as each of these inhabitants of the Northeast could eel while creating a holiday and pouring i to the streets to see their future Presiden . A President who was one of them, like ny of the other children of the Lindus nd Marias, children of all the people. The short-but-slowly-moving jou ey down the main street of Caetes, the Pr sident-elect and some politicians up in a van and the people beside it, did not le ok like a parade. It looked like a proces ion of brothers and sisters, cousins, frie ds, in which one of them was the ce ter, riding on top of the car only to be s en, not because of his difference. The pe ipie could see Lula and speak with him. An observer would sum it up with "Yo 're one of us," "Finally, Lula, you too us there to Brasilia." It was as if the pe uple themselves were being inaugurate as President. Because for the first time sinc the Portuguese sailors discovered our c untry 500 years ago, the people felt :s if they were being inaugurated. For the first time since, almost two hundred ears ago, a Portuguese proclaimed the i dependence of the country and cro ed himself as our emperor; for the first ime since a princess abolished Brazilia slavery but did not distribute land or iuild schools; for the first time since a ma shal proclaimed the Republic but neglecr d to build it; for the first time since, 15 ears ago, we redemocratized Brazil b did not change anything in our social re lity. When he began to speak in C etes, before a crowd greater than the ity's entire population, the sun was disap earing, and it appeared that a rain torm would come to that dry northeastern ack-
woods. Lula spoke with even greater emotion than usual. None ofhis speeches, not even the one he gave on Paulista Avenue in Sao Paulo at dawn on October 28 commemorating the victory, was so charged with emotion. Speaking of his mother, he made no attempt to hide his tears and said that, no matter what, she never bowed her head. His election, he stated, could serve as an examplc for those who should know that they need not and must not bow their heads before the powerful. And he said that in his government each aide will need a heart even larger than his or her brain. Brazil needs cabinet ministers and civil servants who, in the first place, have the heart to shed tears over poverty and the brains to transform their indignation into the driving energy to create proposals for change. It needs government aides who unite the capacity for indignation with the capacity for creating solutions to resolve the causes of that indignation. Lula delayed 500 years in arriving at the Presidential Palace. He came from Caetes, a place that could symbolize the hometown of every poor person in this country, each Brazilian who is unemployed, a migrant, a street child, a desperate mother. He will arrive in the Presidential Palace, the seat of the power that they never had. But, in the airplane on the return flight, we could see that Lula is aware that his journey is only beginning. Five hundred years had to pass prior to his arrival at the Presidential Palace, but now, in the next four years, a new, more difficult journey must be made under the President's coordination in the sense of abolishing poverty, ending social exclusion, accomplishing a second, complete abolition, constructing a true republic and sovereignty, where all feel that they form part of the same country, one where the President not only has an origin in the people but also governs for them. If he succeeds in making this next journey, Lula will go down in history, not only as the man of the people who turned into the President, but also as the President who turned Brazil into a country that favors its people.
Cristovam Buarque is the president of Missao Crianca (Child Mission), was elected Senator from Brasilia, and is Brazil's new Minister of Education since January 1, 2003. He can be reached at cristovambuarqueuol.com.br Translated by Linda Jerome â€” LinJeromecs.com 27
A Brazilian Answer I have witnessed the good side of globalization. It was hard to hide my emotions when I looked into the eyes of every child and stepmother receiving the BolsaEscola in Tanzanian shillings from a Ugandan mother living in the US, who got funding from a British foundation. CRISTOVAM BUARQUE
The author, in Africa 28
In April 2000, I took a taxi from downtown Washington to the local airport. To "break the ice," I asked the cab driver which US state he came from. He replied that he was not American, but, rather, from Uganda, Central Africa. After recovering from my surprise, I inquired about the current situation of AIDS orphans in his native country. He replied that he had lost a sister and a brother-inlaw and that his mother had to look after the grandchildren. He also mentioned that thousands of orphaned children were left alone in the streets of Kampala. His wife, he added, ran a Non-Governmental Organization to support these children. When he had finished, I told him why I was in town. I spoke of my meeting with the World Bank and of Missao Crianca.* I explained the Bolsa-Escola (Scholarship-School) program [Editor's Note: Bolsa-Escola is a stipend given poor families in exchange for their children going to school instead of having to work to help maintain the family.] and how it removed children from work and the street and brought them back to school. Each explanation and piece of information I offered inspired a new question from him. When we were near the airport, he asked if I would mind continuing our conversation. After my check-in, I saw the taxi driver coming in my direction. We resumed our talk, and, after 20 or 30 minutes, I boarded my plane to Geneva, Switzerland. Exporting the Program Some days later, after returning to Brazil, I got an e-mail from Rhoy Kaima, the taxi driver's wife. She told me that she had read the material I left with her husband and wondered if it would be possible to implement the Bolsa-Escola in one of the countries where her organization, Ark Foundation, was active, these being Uganda, Kenya, and Tanzania. I told her yes, on the condition that the project would first be implemented in Tanzania, in homage to former President Julius Nyerere. In the following months, the staff of Missao Crianca estab-
lished regular contact with Rhoy and the Ark Foundation, explaining the implementation proceedings for the BolsaEscola. Gradually, the program begun to take shape; meanwhile, we were seeking outside funding for it. In the middle ofthe process, I was invited to Geneva, where I met with Reinaldo Figueredo, former Foreign Minister of Venezuela. The program, he said, could possibly be well received by an English foundation for which his wife, Michelina Figueredo, was one of the counselors. From his office I contacted MissalÂ° Crianca in Brasilia and asked the staff to draft a pilot project quickly. Due to the different time zones, it was ready the next morning. Some months later, the Parthenon Foundation of London approved the project, offering financial resources sufficient to cover up to 250 Tanzanian families for two years. In 2002, we were able to begin paying the scholarships to these children in Dar es Salaam. A long road had been traveled in these two years. By mid 2002, the Director of UNESCO/Brazil, Jorge Werthein, invited me to make a speech at the VIII Conference of Education Ministers in Africa (MINEDAF VIII), which would be held in Dar es Salaam. In addition to my interest in this opportunity to promote the Bolsa-Escola, I accepted the invitation primarily for the chance to visit the beneficiaries of Missao Crianca. When I discovered that the taxi driver's wife would be there taking care ofher projects, I was even more eager to make the trip. I met Rhoy Kaima in the house where the Tanzanian branch ofthe Ark Foundation is based. She was an active African who was very indignant about political corruption, a sad woman, by no means tolerant of the current situation of the African people. She told me that the adolescents she looked after had lost their parents that day, the night before, the preceding week, or would lose them in the following days. Many of the children, moreover, were already infected by HIV themselves. Walking among them, she was constantly issuing orders, suggesting actions, attempting to resolve each problem of funeral arrangements, housing for orphans, schooling, food, medication. Very well informed about world BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
events, especially those in Africa, she used our taxi ride to the children's location to give us an evaluation of the tragedies in African society caused by the frightening international debt, the chronic poverty, the general corruption, and, above all, the terrible threat of AIDS. She said that in Africa the disease has left teachers dead, sick, infected or about to become infected. 160 Kids and a Song It was precisely in this gloomy scenario that we finally met our 160 children, almost all of them AIDS orphans and many of them themselves already infected, although unaware of the implications ofth is. The school, a single-room barrack, is poor, but clean. The children and their stepmothers were awaiting us and welcomed us with a song. We entered the school; the adults sat on benches, and the children, on the floor. All of the latter appeared to be less than 10 years old. We began handing out the certificates of class attendance. After that, Rhoy Kaima delivered the scholarship stipend to each adult present. I could say that I have witnessed the good side of globalization. For a Brazilian who started to disseminate the idea of the Bolsa-Escola 15 years ago, who began to implement it eight years ago, and who, for the last four years, has traveled all over the world promoting the BolsaEscola initiative, I should confess that it was hard to hide my emotions when I looked into the eyes of every child and stepmother receiving the stipend in Tanzanian shillings from a Ugandan mother living in the US who got funding from a British foundation, money that had been previously deposited in Brazilian reais in Brasilia. I reflected that this entire story began with a simple taxi drive to the Washington airport. In the two speeches I made for the ministers, I began by saying that I was there despite being neither African nor a minister. I was, hovveyer, probably "halfAfrican," like the good Brazilian that I am, and "half-minister" since the Brazilian newspapers were speculating over my possible appointment to the Ministry of Education. Then, I explained what the BolsaEscola was, described its results in various countries, and concluded by reminding the audience that the program was already operating right there in Dar es Salaam and, much better than listening to general thoughts from me, would be for them to hear the person responsible for the program, Rhoy Kaima. The two times she spoke, Rhoy was both firm and emotional while discussing the African situation, as if those African BFtAZZIL -JANUARY 2003
ministers were not entirely cognizant it. But, since they are confined in th "r personal offices with air conditionin travel around in their armored Merced like the ministers of other countries, p haps in a way they are not aware of are aware of, but not troubled by—t reality surrounding them. Rhoy concluded by explaining w the Bolsa-Escola program did to chan the lives of all those families. She al mentioned that during the first month the program she had to cut off some oft scholarships of the children who w not attending the classes. Shortly aft however, this would not be a probl and attendance was now high. She sta that the program solved the basic p lems of those families, and how it reduced school drop-outs. She fina concluded with the words in Engli "This is what Africa needs." • Without School If, while itt Washington two ye rs ago, I had come out the hotel door s conds later, I would have taken anot er taxi and the present situation of th se children would have been complet ly different. It was the combination ofc Incidence, the interest of a Ugandan t xi driver, the militant)/ of his wife, the g od will of an ex-minister of Venezuela, nd the hard work of MissAo Crianca at made it possible to bring hope to a s all group of 160 children.
This is almost nothing in the wide universe of the 90 million children out of school on the African continent, and the 250 million children already in the workforce worldwide, ofwhich more than 3 million are in Brazil alone. Perhaps, with the ministers' interest in the challenge proposed by Rhoy, her example in Dar es Salaam can be expanded all across the African continent. It is a story that began with a simple taxi drive on the other side of the world. It was a long journey from Washi,ngton to Dar es Salaam, and it took place from 2000 to 2002, passing through Brasilia, Geneva and London. And it was accomplished thanks to so many people and so many organizations, through emails, international flights, telephone calls —everything modern and global. A good globalization in the service of children excluded in a globalized world. *NGO created by Cristovam Buarque based in Brasilia, Brazil. • Cristovam Buarque is the president of MissAo Crianca (Child Mission), was elected Senator from Brasilia, and is Brazil's new Minister of Education since January 1, 2003. He can be reached at cristovambuaruueAuol.com.br Translated by FAbio Eon - UNESCO
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Fidel Castro, Hugo Chavez, Fernando Hennque Cardoso
There's no other place in which the threads of the world's revolutionary net show up as clearly as in Latin America. However, they are only visible to those observers who, jumping over the heavy camouflage laid over the facts by an accomplice media, have the guts and the capacity to research by themselves, making use of resources from the Internet. On that matter, the most important, most revealing piece of news to appear lately was suppressed, like a thousand others, from the Brazilian media: Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez sent AlQaeda a million dollars a few days after September 11,2001. The information comes from the most trustworthy of all sources: the man in charge of the operation, Juan Diaz Castillo, an officer ofthe Venezuelan Air Force and, at the time, the pilot of Hugo Chavez's presidential aircraft. A confession in full. detail can be found in the website of the Venezuelan Military officers opposing Chavez, http:/ /militaresdemocraticos.surebase.com/ articulos/en/20021231-01.html. I do not ask you, dear readers, to believe in me. Go to the website. Check it out. Eliminate your doubts writing directly to Castillo. His e-mail address is aguilaami I itaresdemocraticos.com. I wrote him and he confirmed everything. The same website informs that Islamic terrorists and agents of the DGI (DirecciOn General de Inteligenciaâ€” General Intelligence Directorate), the Cuban secret police, hold decisive posi30
License to Kill With the appointment by President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva of Mr. Luiz Eduardo Soares for National Secretary of Public Security the good days of vulgar criminality are over. From now on all criminals without ideology belong in jail.1 dare not ask where the others do belong. OLAVO DE CARVALHO
tions in the structure created by Chavez to suffocate the national strike that threatns to throw him out. The arrogance of Brazil's leftist journalists makes them believe it is OK to deny the readers news of such importance, so that you may remain etherized in the pinky illusion of a moment of collective insanity. But not only on that side is the illusion beginning to fade, even if the new government is still in its first days. The appointment of Mr. Luiz Eduardo Soares for National Secretary of Public Security is enough to show what kind of 'war on crime' can be expected from federal authorities in the next years. If you don't know Mr. Soares, you don't know what you are missing. Intellectually, as I have demonstrated in The Collective Imbecile II', he is someone who sticks political labels on people about whom he ignores everything, who -pontificates on subjects he doesn't understand and who affects erudition quoting authors he has not read. He is the typical Latin American pseudointellectual, a mind so empty ofculture as it is full of moralizing platitudes against the evils of capitalism. Nobody could represent the new government's mentality better than him. On the moral side, he is even more interesting. If you do not remember, he is that sub-secretary of security from Rio de Janeiro who, knowing the whereabouts of the drug lord and murderer Marcinho VP, sought by the police at the time, and BRAZZIL -JANUARY 2003
knowing that the criminal had the financial support of filmmaker Jodo Moreira Sales, actively hid that from the authorities. Mr. Soares did not explain why he did that. He just threw accusations against the "rotten side" of the police as if the rottenness of something could serve as a justification for the rottenness of something else and went to the US, where he found the opportunity to shine in one of those universities filled with friends of international terrorism as the hero of a cause which, in his imagination, couldn't be more noble. Contrasting with Mr. Soares's silence, Mr. Sales decided to talk. According to him, Marcinho VP deserved help because he had the most respectable aspiration of going to Mexico to do some guerrilla training with the Zapatistas and the police confirmed later that he actually went there. A similar pretext was used by the members of the leftist elite who protected the kidnappers of millionaire Abilio Diniz. As soon as the secret that these were armed agents of the Chilean Communist Party came to light, those wonderful people immediately covered the compromising liaison, in a sudden display of contempt for their former
protégés, under the allegation that these serves only the despise of a conscious were just regular criminals, unfaithful to revolutionary. So, what he finds worthy the Party, who killed and kidnapped for of protection is the criminal who has money and not for a cause. Truly an been indoctrinated, trained and armed to inverted camouflage, for it showed the kill for a political cause which is the same intention of imposing on the public, ab ve as his. What a coincidence that the the respect for the law, a new scalö of Zapatistas, Hugo Chavez, Fidel Castro values in which crimes are not so baid if and the FARC all share the same cause. the ideology of its beneficiaries is right. The presence of Mr. Soares as NaBut, if that moral option was in the tional Secretary of Public Security is eyes of Joao Moreira Sales the inti ate therefore a promise that the good days of justification for the occultation ofa cr mi- vulgar criminality are over: all criminals nal, what other reason could there b, in without ideology belong in jail.! dare not the eyes of Mr. Soares, for the occ Ra- ask where the others do belong. Mexico, tion of the occultation? perhaps? I don't think so. Who would go There are only three hypotheses. qne, so far when training can be obtained at disregard and accommodation: Mr. home, with FARC specialists hired to Soares, as acting sub-secretary of secu- elevate the technical level of violence in rity, thought that a fleeing criminal 'Was the slums of Rio? none of his business. Two, some eg tistic motive: money, to help a friend, the Olavo de Carvalho is a philosopher and the author of several books, exchange of favors. Third, an ideolog cal option: Mr. Soares believed that the tr ns- including 0 Imbecil Coletivo: Atualidades Incufturais Brasileiras (1996) and 0 formation of a regular thug in a terr rist Futuro do Pensamento Brasileiro and guerrilla-fighter was a moral enterEstudos sobre o Nosso Lugar no Mundo (1997). He writes for three very influenprise of high value to which he should tial dailies in Brazil: Folha de S. Paulo, lend a hand. 0 Glob° (from Rio) and Zero flora (from Mr. Soares would find the first wo Porto Alegre, state of Rio Grande do hypotheses an abomination. Being a ian Sul). His articles can be found at of manners, a so-called 'intellectual', he www.olavodecarvalho.org and midiasemmascara.org. To reach him would never do anything as vulga as write to lumenortenlink.com.br protecting a 'regular thug', which de-
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PRISAO SUBITA Ndo sou urn homem religioso. As relacOes da alma corn o Criador sdo tdo puras que considero uma profanacdo buscar intermediarios. Mas ern meu intimo sempre achei que todos nos temos um anjo da guarda. S6 que, naquela tarde fatidica de 23 de maio de 2000, o meu devia estar de ferias. Contra todas as probabilidades, eu fui preso. Era uma bela tarde de temperatura amena, corn sot e ceu azul. Eu nunca havia imaginado que coisas como essas podem ser tdo caras, tan importantes para nos. Tampouco podia imaginar os horrores de uma prisdo. Em minha opinido, a major ironia de nossas vidas é que, apesar de todo o avanco tecnologico, o ser humano jamais podera prever o que vai acontecer no minuto seguinte. E nada neste mundo podera mudar isso. 0 FUTURO A DEUS PERTENCE... Se isso fosse possivel, poderiamos evitar uma serie de acontecimentos que julgamos em sua maioria injustos, sejam eles dramaticos ou banais. Desastres e calamidades acontecem corn freqijencia por estarmos um minuto a mais ou a menos em determinado lugar. Poucos sabiam de minha situacdo. Eu estava corn prisao preventiva decretada, como suposto mentor de urn assalto, por provas circunstanciais, desde o dia 1° de mama de 1999, ou seja, havia quase um ano e meio. Lembro-me daquele dia como se fosse hoje, e jamais you esquece-lo. Estava em urn restaurante terminando de almocar corn meu amigo Vilalva, tomando um cafezinho e pronto para sair, quando percebi a chegada da policia. Eram quatro homens dando-me voz de prisdo. Eu e meu amigo ficamos perplexos. Lembro-me do zumbido que apareceu em meus ouvidos, parecia urn turbilhao, a boca seca, o suor frio e a adrenalina a mil. Procurando encarar o fato (ou fatalidade) corn serenidade, tive de fazer um grande esforco para me recompor. Ndo acredito no diabo, muito menos no inferno. Mas logo iria descobrir que o inferno existe, e aqui mesmo neste pequenino planeta azul cheio de surpresas. Urn minuto depois, eu já estava no assoalho de uma caminhonete, algemado e corn destino ignorado, sentindo-me como urn saco de batatas sendo transportado. Era jogado de um lado para outro, a medida que o camburao corria pelas ruas da cidade. Minha cidade! Jamais poderia imaginar que iria ficar tanto tempo sem ve-la, sem sentir a 32
Lives from Jail After 15 minutes, the gallery was invaded by around 20 policemen from Garra, all dressed as Ninja, and heavily armed with 12-gauge shotguns, baseball bats, iron bars and electrical nighsticks, cussing and screaming. They commanded that all inmates take off their clothes shouting, "Everybody naked, get out, you assholes, you shit flies." HUMBERTO RODRIGUES
sua atmosfera regozij ante de vida. Ap6s quinze minutos—que mais pareceram uma eternidade—de um longo e torturante trajeto, eu seria descarregado e encaminhado as vexatOrias providencias burocraticas de uma prisdo, corn fotos de lado e de frente, tinta nos dedos, etc. Ap6s mais de tres horas algemado, fui levado por urn longo con-edor, corn grades de ferro e cadeados, cujo ranger penetrava em minha mente a medida que jam sendo abertos e trancados as minhas costas. Surpreendentemente, eu estava calmo, como que anestesiado, lembrandome das cenas do fume "0 Conde de Monte Cristo". Eu estava adentrando o inferno. Ida conhecer a prisdo do Depatri. Tudo isso aos 67 anos de idade, e eu que pensei que ja tivesse vivido todas as emocaes da vida. Imaginem urn quarto grande, de aproximadamente cinco metros de frente por seis de fundo, sem janelas, corn grades na parte frontal, e correntes e cadeados exatamente igual ao pordo de urn navio negreiro. Lateralmente, apenas uma pequena passagem para urn cubiculo de um metro de largura, corn uma latrina e urn chuveiro, sem uma pia sequer, tornando as mais simples necessidades de higiene rnuito dificeis. Nas paredes internas, doze beliches corn tres camas cada, todos de cimento, alguns corn urn cobertor surrado e colchonetes de 5 cm de espessura. A Unica lampada de sessenta velas deixava tudo cinza, inclusive os cinqtientapresos que la dentro se acotovelavam. Nesse momento, senti-me como urn passarinho sendo colocado numa gaiola junto corn cinqiienta gatos. Ledo engano. A recepcao foi cordial. Eu iria descobrir que os presos em geral sao solidarios e prestativos corn seus companheiros. Procuram ser simpaticos, oferecem cigarros e o que tiverem para corner. A lei da cadeia, quando se entra em uma cela, é: em primeiro lugar, tirar os sapatos, vestir sandalias havaianas e tomar banho. Eu ainda estava corn os pulsos intensamente doloridos das algemas quando terminei esse ritual, corn sabonete e toalhas cedidos pelos novos companheiros. Logo em seguidadevemos tomar atitudes e proceder como homens, para ndo sermos alvo de gozacties e provocar reacOes que as vezes podem ser fatais. Uma palavra a toa, bemintencionada, poderiaprovocar suspeitas. Qualquer atitude estranha criaria situagOes criticas intoleraveis. Se conseguirmos demonstrar seguranca e sermos cordiais, receberemos respeito e cordialidade. Felizmente, foi assim que BRAZZIL -JANUARY 2003
se sucedeu. Curiosa foi a impressdo que meus companheiros tiveram quando entrei na cela. Como eu estava bem-vestido, corn casaco de couro, camisa corn gola role, calca de camurca, sapatos engraxados e Oculos escuros, eles pensaram que eu era o novo delegado. A descoberta da verdade foi motivo de muito riso, que todos n6s compartilhamos. Quando cheguei na cela já era noite, o problema era onde iria dormir. No chdo, evidentemente, pois os mais antigos dormiriam nos beliches, dois em cada cama, na posicdo de valete, como nas cartas de baralho. Nenhum dos dois se mexe. Os be liches mais altos quase tocavam o teto, e contaram-me que de vez em quando um preso dormindo la no alto despenca, machucando-se bastante alem de freqtientemente atingir um companheiro no chdo. Mesmo assim a maioria permanece deitada, levantando-se apenas para suas necessidades ou na hora das "refeicaes". Naquela noite e nas seis seguintes, eu dormiria no chao, em cima de papeldo, corn meu casaco de couro servindo de travesseiro. Quanto ao sono... os leitores poderdo imaginar... 0 pesadelo noturno se distanciava, parecia urn acontecimento bem antigo. Ficava quiet° encolhido em meu canto, fechava os olhos e tornava a abri-los. Uma indignacdo muito grande tomava conta de meus pensamentos. As vezes conseguia lembrar alguma coisa de meu passado, ate de minha infancia, e, nessas rapidas fugas, consumia urn cigarro eras do outro. As comichOes no corpo eu atribuia a roupa sem lavar, ou as picadas de pulgas e percevejos, sei la... Muitos tossiam e pigarreavam, outros roncavam. Havia urn negro nigeriano, enorme e gordo, que quando dormia parecia uma moto coin escapamento aberto. Os companheiros jogavam coisas nele, mas ndo adiantava—um minuto depo is, a moto voltava a toda velocidade. Finalmente, tornado por uma enorme fadiga, permaneci inerte, acompanhando o decrescer das vozes e dos gestos ao redor. Em seguida veio o torpor e o sono. Para que ficar pensando no imprevisivel? No dia seguinte comecavam a esbocar-se camaradagens, apoiavamos nelas as nossas fraquezas. Criaturas desconhecidas e anonimas falavam-se como se fossem velhos conhecidos. Embora a situacdo fosse tragicomica, era divertido ouvir a quantidade de giria que eles utilizavam para se comunicar. Eu ndo entendia bulhufas. E ate Cameies ficaria corn inveja de vocabulario to diversificado. Cadeia tambem é cultura. BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
Afastava-me, acercava-me dos grup s, esforcava-me para descobrir particularidades de linguagem ou mes o de fisionomias. Era dificil associar as figuras aos nomes. Corn o tempo, eu v na a descobrir principios de honra que e surpreenderiam. 0 ser humano costuma apontar os defeitos e fraquezas de seus semelhan es, e omitir as qualidades. Na cadeia ' o inverso. Respeito e dignidade fundamentais para os detentos. Fi o possivel para entender aqueles companheiros, em sua maioria pess as simples e humildes, penetrar-lhes a al a, sentir suas dores, admirar-lhes sua rela iva grandeza. Seja branco, negro ou pa do, velho ou moco, born ou mau, ladrãs ou assassino, tido ha preconceito alg m. Exceto corn os estupradores. Durante o dia joga-se conversa f ra, conta-se urn ao outro o seu drama e a sua historia. Todos viveram epised os, padeceram_ de dores inauditas, c mo raramente é dado ao ho em experimentar. A lguns mostraram traps de gran eza e dignidade e outros, por falta de estru ura social, educacdo e pela prOpria ironi da vida, mostram a medida exata daq ilo que existe de mais sordid() na cond cao humana. E por que ndo? Se na pr6 ria sociedade encontramos esses per s... Curiosamente, dentro da cadeia os prOprios presos nao permitem qual uer deslize. Eles odeiam a falsidade e a delacdo e qualquer assunto é resol ido entre eles, jamais solicitam a interve cdo da policia. Quando surge uma briga, esta imediatamente apartada. Eles sa em das consequencias. 0 preso tido pod ser "vacildo", tern de estar sempre "I iga • o". Ou aprende a ser homem ou sera alv • da reprovacdo geral. E al.. Tenho 67 anos e uma cart ira profissional corn mais de vinte an 's de registro. Trabalhei em grandes empr sas, sempre no cargo de diretor ou gere te, e posso afirmar que a cordialidad ou solidariedade desses companheiro de prisdo nada fica a dever aquela que r cebi nas empresas onde trabalhei. Havia entre nOs urn rapaz que iinha sido baleado no abdomen, cujo ap lido era Baleado. Ele tinha a necessida e de quatro curativos diarios. Em mo ento algum faltou alguem que se prontifi asse a fazer os curativos. Seu organismo e tava combalido, sobre o qual se atir vam sobrecargas consideraveis; talvez tido resistisse o necessario. Ndo sei o rime que ele cometeu, mas seria justo star numa cela infecta? Se chegasse urn reso sem agasalho, era certo que apa ecia algum; se na cela nab houvesse uma
determinada coisa, era pedida na cela vizinha—e, se fosse possivel, o pedido estaria logo sendo atendido. Jamais vi um companheiro negar um cigarro a outro. Alem disso, eles tern uma capacidade de imaginacdo digna de nota. Queriam jogar damas. Nao e que urn belo dia apareceu um jogo de damas, corn tampinhas de Coca e Fanta e urn tabuleiro de papelao muito bem feito? Foi born porque eu sempre ganhava alguns maws de cigarros nas apostas... Quando chegava urn alvard de soltura, era uma verdadeira festa. Todos batiam palmas e davam votos de felicidades. Era uma alegria geral. Todo dialog° ou pedido, atendido ou nao, sempre terminava corn a classica frase: "Firmeza, irmao", como se dissessem "Muito obrigado, agtiente firme, dias melhores virdo". Sempre havia uma palavra de estimulo on de consolo para todos. Entre os companheiros, todos sdo chamados de "irmaio". Existe sempre algo de grande entre os humildes. Eu mesmo fui alvo dessa solidariedade. Poucos dias antes de ser transferido para a Casa de Detencao, o famoso Carandiru, tive uma crise de gastrite, meu estomago estava urn caco e passei dois dias e duas noites vomitando. Enquanto meus companheiros tido conseguiram que eu fosse levado a um hospital para ser medicado, ficaram o tempo todo batendo corn as canecas nas grades, solicitando o atendimento. Justica seja feita, quando fui levado ao hospital, fui escoltado por dois policiais e tratado corn lhaneza. Depois de medicado, durante o percurso de volta, chegaram a parar a viatura em frente a uma padaria e a comprar um litro de leite corn o proprio dinheiro. Tomei aquele leite quase de urn gole so, ja que ndo me alimentava havia algum tempo. Infelizmente não fiquei sabendo o nome deles, mas registro aqui minhagratiddo. Foi o leite mais delicioso que tomei em minha vida. Conheci um preso que realmente me impressionou. Já fazia vinte dias que eu estava preso quando ele chegou, de madrugada. Estavamos deitados, naque le dorme-ndo-dorme, e ouvimos o barulho dos cadeados e das correntes para logo em seguida a porta se abrir. Embora a cela estivesse lotada e o chdo coberto de detentos, tentando se acomodar da melhor maneira possivel, era mais urn preso que chegava. Corn todos sonolentos, a conversa foi pouca e adiada para o dia seguinte. E normal quando chega um novo preso que os companheiros de cela queiram saber quem 6, como foi sua prisdo e o que ele fez (se fez). Essa colocacdo entre parenteses ndo é absolutamente uma ironia, pois entre os 33
cinquenta que la estavam, pelo menos cinco nab deveriam estar, dentro de minha e nao me incluo nessa conta. Quando muito, cometeram faltas leves que ppderiam perfeitamente ser julgadas em liberdade. Se esse criterio fosse adotado, muito provavelmente no teriarnos hoje o major problema carcerdrio do pals, a superpopulacao de quase 100 mil presos que abarrotam nossas penitenciarias (o dobro da capacidade atual). Mas al nao haveria desculpa para a construcao de novos presidios, o que nao é interessante para muitos... No dia seguinte, o novo preso estava sentado a urn canto da cela; era urn rapaz novo, aparentando no mdximo trinta e cinco anos, loiro, de aspecto saudavel, estatura media, simpatico e reservado. Seu nome: Jose Reinaldo. Estava discretamente conversando corn urn companheiro que todos já respeitavam por ser urn famoso ladrao de bancos. Logo ficariamos sabendo que a prisao do recem-chegado seria considerada o "Trofeu do Ano" no Depatri: so em 1999, ele foi acusado de haver roubado mais de 5 milhoks de reais e 1.600 quilos de ouro de diversos bancos. A Igo em torno de 5% do que roubou o Lalau... Era olhado por todos corn admiracao e respeito. Sua juventude, seu sorriso, sua simplicidade e tranquilidade eram caracteristicas marcantes. Muito embora deixasse transparecer urn auge febril de energia. Conversando, logo se percebia tambem sua grande facilidade em desenvolver uma ideia e urn didlogo. Ele acabou sendo transferido poucos dias antes de mm para o Carandiru. Quando cheguei Ia, foi por seu intermedio que tive o privilegio de ficar em um born "barraco" no pavilhao II, alojado corn relativo conforto, e de conseguir um trabalho. E assim a personalidade desses companheiros, band idos, assaltantes de banco, ladrOes, cuja solidariedade e companheirismo sao maiores que a de outros "amigos" que as vezes fazemos
lugares mais preso é muito consciente da necessidade em de cuidar da higiene e da I impeza, pois sofisticados... Gostaria muito de em uma cela corn cinqijenta pessoas isso contar a historia de J.R. é fundamental. Pela manha recebemos urn paozinho neste I ivro, mas poucos dias depois de minha ida emborrachado corn manteiga. café e leite para o Carandiru, ele foi de soja, que chegam na cela ja quase transferido para a Peni- frios. Tudo isso, somado as noites maltenciaria de Sao Vicente. dormiclas, ao frio, a umidade da cela e Nao sei qual a "magica" tensao diaria, deixa qualquer urn doente, que ele fez mas, astuto, sofrendo do est8mago e/ou do intestino. experiente e corn dinhei- Alem disso, as "refeicOes" eram feitas a ro, naodeve ter sido dificil poucos metros da latrina. Vinte por cento arrumar essa transferen- dos presos estavam corn furunculose. Para cia. Do Carandiru é quase impossivel usar o "boi" (latrina) fazia-se uma tira fugir. Ele, que alem dos assaltos, ja fugiu retorcida de papel higienico acesa na de diversas outras penitenciarias, deveria ponta, para tentar disfarcar o mau-cheiro. ter muita coisa a contar. Mas, nesta altura, o banho é diario e obrigatOrio, cobrado nao se sabe onde estard. SO me resta pelos proprios presos. desejar-lhe boa sorte. Afinal de contas, 0 Depatri é urn dep6sito de presos segundo me contou corn orgulho, jamais que estao sumariando. Assim, quase todos feriu alguem ou assaltou urn pobre. os dias, entram e saem presos. Dessa Roubou de organ izacOes poderosas, que forma e tambem por levarem em roubam dentro da lei, impedindo a tab consideracao minha idade (o que me necessaria redistribuicao de renda em sensibilizou), consegui um lugar num nosso pals. Roubou muito menos que beliche. Se por urn lado dispunha de urn centenas de politicos, que prejudicam lugar para ficar durante o dia, corn urn milhOes de trabalhadores, e que co lchonete e um cobertor puido, por outro continuam livres, leves e soltos, compartilhava meu novo local corn os aparecendo sorridentes na TV e em percevejos, o que era uma faca de dois comicios. gumes. Tudo muito sofisticado, como Por volta do meio-dia trouxeram os deve ser no inferno... "bandecos", e o almoco foi distribuido As tercas-feiras, vespera das visitas, pelo "barraqueiro". Olhei de longe a acontece a faxina nas celas, que os presos comida nada apetitosa, corn cheiro pouco fazem questa° de realizar. E a major convidativo. Mas nao foi apenas isso que dificuldade: lavar os beliches de cimento me fez evita-la—reaparecia uma e o chao da cela, corn 50 presos dentro, inapetenciaque eu já haviasentido algum realmente complicado. Os que nao tempo antes. Era sO passar nervoso e participam da faxina ficam amontoados pronto, sO a vista do alimento já me junto corn a roupa de cama e os provocava nauseas... F urnava sem colchonetes em alguns beliches — e esse descanso, enquanto ficava admirando o processo é revezado ate o termino da apetite de certos companheiros. Alguns faxina. Mas nada é impossivel para que estranhavam minha recusa, chegando a as visitas encontrem a cela limpa, e eles insistir para que eu comesse. Mas con- possam receber corn orgulho suas fesso que sempre fui urn pouco enjoado companheiras ou familiares. Ld eles tern para comida. Nunca fui de quantidade, suas relacOes Intimas. Os solteiros e os mas de qualidade. Caso contrario, que nao recebem visitas intimas se neste qualquer "vitamina" resolve a minha dia ficam nas galerias. Para que haja refeicao. Mascomo nao tinha "vitamina", privacidade os beliches sao tapados corn eu iria emagrecer mais de dez quilos em lencois e cobertores de todas as cores. A 40 dias. 0 "bandeco" vinha cheio de cela fica parecendo estar cheia de tendas arroz cozido no vapor, quase sem drabes. 0 c I imapsicologico ficapor conta tempero, corn alguns graos de feijao sem deles. caldo. As vezes, um bife de terceira, Eu nao tinha visitas e, mesmo que I inguica ou frango, urn paozinho e agua. tivesse, ia preferir que minha 0 sabor é bastante desagradavel, e dizem companheira ficasse em casa. Mas meus que a corn ida contem salitre. As bandejas companheiros aguardavam este dia corn sao colocadas no cob o e as refeicoes sao ansiedade. E tudo acontecia dentro do feitas corn uma espatula de plastic°, pois maior respeito.1nfeliz daquele que tivesse os presos nao podem recebertalheres. Os a ousadia de se mostrar mais atrevido. 0 hifes sao cortados a dentadas. E uma respeito A visita faz parte do codigo de forma muito sutil e sugestiva de se honra do preso, e a visita é a coisa mais alimentar... Todos cuidam para nao sagrada. deixar cair urn grab de arroz no chao. 0 BRAZZIL -JANUARY 2003
Já assisti a varios filmes sobre o Holocausto, a Inquisicao, campos de concentracao, torturas, etc., mas nunca conseguiria imaginar que fosse viver momentos taco dramaticos, humilhantes e dolorosos como OS que Passel na noite de 28 de maio de 2000. o ambiente no Depatri é tenebroso, seu subsolo é cheio de galerias escuras, corn cinco celas cada, corn grades, correntes e cadeados. Nada de janelas, corn excecao de uma pequena ao final de cada galeria. Sol? Nem pensar, e sem relogios perde-se a nocao de dia e noite. As celas estao sempre lotadas, corn a media de 50 presos em cada uma, todos corn aspect() debilitado e cansado, corn shorts, camiseta, sanddlias havaianas e a barba por fazer. Todas as celas tern varais de roupas, geralmente cheios de camisetas de times de futebol. Para quem nao fuma ou tern alergia é o fim, pois o ambiente é muito (mild°, corn cheiro de mofo e maconha misturado a nevoa da fumaca dos cigArros. Estdvamos assistindo a TV, comprada por alguns presos; era urn desses programas de domingo, altamente educativos (provavelmente, se nossa televisao nao fosse tao ruim e houvesse um pouco de preocupacao corn a cultura, nossas cadeias nao estariam superlotadas). Sub itamente, ouviu-se urn disparo de arma de fogo; o cheiro de pOlvora e perigo imediatamente espalhouse pelas galerias. 0 tiro ficou reboando pelos cantos de cada cela. Posteriorrnente, ficamos sabendo que tinha sido na cela n° 12, a mais ou menos vinte metros de distancia da nossa. Na prisao, todos ficam "ligados" 24 horas por dia, num clima de tensao muito grande. Aquele disparo inesperado naturalmente causou enorme rsebul ico e alvoroco entre todos; eu fiquei tenso, aguardando os acontecimentos. Depois ficamos sabendo que. um maluco, nao se sabe como, agarrou um 38 e tentou enquadrar o carcereiro de plantao. 0 maxim° que conseguiu foi dar um tiro na mao direita do infeliz, que valentemente conseguiu agarrar a arrna e imobi I izar o preso. o carcereiro, cheio de dor e &Ho, saiu gritando e xingando pela galeria. Depois disso, houve urn silencio mortal. Todos ficamos naquela expectativa do "e agora, o que sera que vai acontecer?" A- inquietdcao nos dominava, crescia e provocava suores frios de expectativa. Pairava no ar uma ressonancia de comentarios inaudive is. Procurei acalmar os companheiros, demonstrando confiBRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
anca e serenidade. Mal sabia que dal a pouco iria enfrentar o diabo de fre te corn toda a sua foria. E que fOria! Depois de quinze minutos, a gale la foi invadida por um grupo de apro 1madarnente vinte policiais do "Garr", todos vestidos de ninja, forteme te armados corn espingardas calibre 2, tacos de beisebol, barras de ferro e bast. es de choque eletrico, xingando e dan o ordens em altos brados. Ordenaram ue todos os presos tirassem as rou as gritando "todos nus, para fora, seus • us de burros, moscas de boi". Fomos levados para uma gale ia paralela, corn celas desativadas, e e te percurso de uns 60 metros tornou-se m verdadeiro"corredor polones". A med da que caminhavamos, totalmente nus cc.m as maos na nuca, levavamos uma enor e surra, sem poder esbocar qualquer t po de reacao. Coitado daquele que solta se urn gem ido ou chorasse, apanhava ais ainda. Todas as fisionomias estampav m o mais puro terror, angdstia e med., e seguiamos nossa procissao de ampa • e encorajamento reciprocos. Varios tiros de 12 foram dispara os, um bem prOximo a meu ouvido,"'tie ficou zunindo por dois dias. No final do corredor, mais de 150 presos fica am encurralados, num amontoado de co •os nus e indefesos. Foi al que comecaram a bater •om mais odic) e furor, obrigando tod • a entrar em duas celas cheias de casca ho, provavelmente devido a alguma refo ma parada. Havia urn mau cheiro nause nte devido a alguma privada entupida, Id ficamos de joelhos no cascalho, sue depois de algum tempo parecia br as ardentes. Os ninjas batiam nas costas e nas solas dos pes, corn os tacos de beise ol. Vi dois presos desmaiando de tanta or. Depois disso, jogaram agua em cim de nose aplicaram choques corn os bast es; com requintes de crueldade, al ns procuravam a area genital para aplic r as descargas. Nunca poderia imaginar Igo tao desumano, covarde e insólito. Par cia um filme de terror, mas as vitimas e am reais, seres humanos. Toda essa tortura pareceu nao ter im, durando uma eternidade. Depois d sse massacre, fomos levados de volta As c las, ainda apanhando, agora no rosto, th um elemento mais espirituoso (espiriti de porco), que usava umasandalia Hava ana numa das maos e aplicava fortes bofet das no rosto e na boca (eu tenho 1,80 m e sempre fui um homem forte, mas ess era bem mais forte). Uma dessas bofet das acertou minha boca e abalou dois de tes, que viriam a cair mais tarde. Foi o que
mais doeu, nao fisica mas moralmente. Doi ate hoje, pois estou banguela. Quando retornamos As nossas celas frias e escuras, eramos farrapos de homens, totalmente despidos de suas vestes e de sua dignidade. Nas celas nao haviarestado absolutamente nada, sequer urn fiapo de pano. Era totalmente dantesco, alguns companheiros sangrando corn cortes na cabeca, outros corn hematomas, minha boca latejava e o brace, esquerdo estava imobilizado de tanta dor. A surra foi uma degradacao humana inesquecivel, que ficard indelevelmente marcada nas rnentes de cada urn dos sobreviventes. Em nossa cela, a TV, o chuveiro eletrico e o pequeno ventilador haviam virado sucata. Permanecemos gemendo, em estado de choque, numa cela totalmente vazia e escura, como se por ali houvesse passado urn furacao e devastado tudo. Os companheiros estavam exaustos e imOveis, corn o olhar distante, perdido no nada, talvez pensando na familia ou em dias melhores do passado. Tinham acabado de perder os Oltimos fiapos de dignidade que !hes restavam. Era um silencio sepulcral, entrecortado pelos gemidos e lamentos. Assim ficamos toda a noite e a mantra do dia seguinte, tentando se acomodar no cimento duro e frio. SO no final da tarde do dia seguinte e que camisetas, shorts e sanddlias foram jogados para dentro da cela. Meu casaco de couro, do qual eu tanto gostava, meu relogio que nao era do Paraguai, meus Oculos escuros, sapatos e calca, nunca mais os vi. Inclusive oitenta e cinco reais que estavam num dos bolsos. Meu guarda-roupa havia sido reduzido a uma cam iseta, shorts e sandal ias, tudo usado, que nem sequer cram meus. Precisamos viver no inferno, mergu-
lhar nos subterraneos sociais para poder avaliar coisas que de outra forma jamais poderiamos entender. Os acontecimentos me pareciam desprovidos de qualquer razao, as coisas nao se relacionavam. SO o tempo poderia encarregar-se de recompor nosso raciocinio. Cento e cinqiienta presos haviam sido mutilados fisica e moralmente pelo erro de apenas um. A ignorancia superava a razao. Os dias seguintes foram de tensao, todos imaginando que qualquer momento poderia acontecer tudo de novo. Foi assim durante tres dias, ate quarta-feira, que seria dia de visitas. E quando se recebe dos familiares urn pouco de afeto, roupas, cigarros etc. Mas naquela quarta nao houve visitas. Ouviamos gritos distantes, das mks e esposas que, do lado de fora, corn a visita proibida, sofriam sem saber o que havia acontecido e imaginavam o pior. Todos sofriam e choravam la fora e dentro das celas. Havia um companheiro que, tendo levado fortes pancadas nos rins, urinava sangue; outro sentia fortes dores nas claviculas e outro ainda nao conseguia sequer se levantar. Eu, um dos que menos apanhou, estava banguela, sem dois dentes da frente. Formavamos urn grupo heterogeneo que rudemente havia sido desagregado e que lentamente tentava se recompor. As figuras vacilantes, timidas, aos poucos ganhavam relevo, imaginando a expectativa de Was melhores. Indagavamos a nos mesmos se tudo aquilo havia realmente acontecido, pois era tudo tao inacreditavel, inconcebivel. Sem perceber, emergiamos de urn horrendo pesadelo de trevas e sofrimento inaudito. Os ruins sairiam de la piores ainda; os bons sairiam corn odic, e rancor no coracao, transformando-se em iguais aos outros. A semana seguinte foi um verdadeiro drama. Sem a entrada de visitas, nao tinhamos sequer papel higienico. SO na semana seguinte é que as visitas foram permitidas, e aos poucos as coisas foram voltando ao "normal". 0 inferno voltava ao normal. Em funcao de algumas denuncias feitas pelos familiares dos presos, posteriormente aparecerem por la alguns representantes da OAB e dos Direitos Humanos, alern do padre Gunther, da Pastoral Catol ica. Conseqiientemente alguns presos foram encaminhados para o IML, quando os sintomas ja haviam desaparecido. Cinco dias depois, recebi a visita de meu amigo e advogado, dr. Ricardo Rene Ribeiro, para informar-me que eu havia sido condenado a cinco anos e quatro meses. 0 unico alento que Ode dar-me e que já havia entrado corn o recurso de apelacao no Tacrim. Eu sequer havia sido ouvido pelo juiz. Sao curiosas certas reacOes. Meus companheiros já haviam me contado que, quando se recebe o impacto de uma bala, ou de uma facada, naquele momento nada sentimos. A dor vem depois, e como doi! Essa é a sensacao que senti quando recebi a noticia de minha condenacao. Fiquei como que anestesiado, incapaz de raciocinar, atonito, aturdido. Ate sorri (urn sorriso banguela), quando meu advogado se despediu. Agora encolhido a urn canto da cela, lentamente meu raciocinio retoma e, corn ele, a dor muda, profimda, indecifravel. Nao é uma dor fisica, e uma dor moral, que provoca indagacOes, para as quais nao obtemos respostas. Foi quando surgiu em meu pensamento o poema "Se", de Rudyard Kipling, e fui capaz de declama-lo mentalmente, coisa que nunca havia feito antes. Se Rudyard Kipling Rudyard Kipling, poeta nascido em Bombaim, India, em 36
1865, filho de ingleses, educado no Inglaterra., V iajou por %/arias partes do mundo e viveu algum tempo na India, Africa do Sul, Australia e Estados Unidos. "Se es capaz de manter a tua calma quando Todo o mundo ao redor ja a perdeu e te culpa; De crer em ti quando estao todos duvidando, E para esses no entanto achar uma desculpa; Se es capaz de esperar sem te desesperares, Ou, enganado, nao mentir ao mentiroso, Ou, sendo odiado, sempre ao Odio esquivares, E nao parecer born demais nem pretensioso. Se es capaz de pensar - sem que a isso so te atires; De sonhar - sem fazer dos sonhos teus senhores; Se, encontrando a desgraca e o triunfo, conseguires Tratar da mesma forma a esses dois impostores; Se es capaz de softer a dor de ver mudadas Em armadilhas as verdades que disseste, E as coisas, por que deste a vida, estracalhadas, E refaze-las corn o bem pouco que te reste; Se es capaz de arriscar numa (mica parada Tudo quanto ganhaste em toda a tua vida, E perder e, ao perder, sem nunca dizer nada, Resignado, tornar ao ponto de partida; De for-car coracao, nervos, musculos, tudo A dar seja o que for que neles ainda existe, E a persistir assim quando, exaustos, contudo Resta a vontade em ti que ainda ordena: Persiste!'; Se es capaz de, entre a plebe, nao te corromperes E, entre reis, tido perder a naturalidade, E de amigos, quer bons, quer maus, te defenderes, Se a todos podes ser de alguma utilidade, E se es capaz de dar, segundo por segundo, Ao minuto fatal todo valor e brilho: Tua é a terra corn tudo o que existe no mundo E o que é muito mais — tu seras um homem, meu filho!" (Traducao de Guilherme de Almeida) ,4
E ante tao forte argumento, conclui que ainda nao era o fim. Apenas uma licao, nao sei se justa ou nao.
Nota: em janeiro de 2001; as instalacOes carcerarias do Depatri foram desativadas. Saiu ate nos jomais e compareceu urn monte de politicos, como se eles estivessem realizando urn feito excepcional. This text was excerpted from the initial pages of the justreleased Vidas do Carandiru (HistOrias Reais) by Humberto Rodrigues. The book is autobiographical and was written by Rodrigues in prison during the time he was jailed after being wrongly accused and condemned as being the intellectual author of a theft he didn't commit. At age 67, the respected journalist from Sao Paulo was sent to the Depatri prison on May 23, 2000 and tranferred later to Carandiru, which until recently when it was deactivated, was the largest and most explosive prison compound in Latin America. The author became a teacher of Mathematics and Portuguese to his cell mates until he was set free on October 18, 2001 after being declared innocent by the Justice. You may get more information about the book in the publisher's homepage: hftp://www.geracaobooks.com.br/ and you can contact the author writing to geracaobooks(&,geracaobooks.com.br BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
Can't You Hear My Scream? Para is the poster state for Amazon destruction, injustice and violence. The last decade has seen the assassination of over 1000 Brazilians in Para; many environmental activists or individuals working towards land reform. Here, just a scene of this enduring and tragic play. TODD SOUTHGATE
BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
When new broke on September 21 that Dave, Reinaldo and Fernanda ere missing, I was in the midst of editing images from the prey i o s night's violent encounter; the rest of our crew was planning f r our immediate and hopefully safe escape. We had all stopped everything to listen over the two-way radio as Agnaldo, who ad driven the inflatable to the city of Porto de Moz, explaine that Dave and the others had entered the city but were surr. nded by loggers after reaching the airstrip. Agnaldo was f rced to move the boat further from the rendezvous point for the mob had also discovered him and began lobbing rocks nd stones. He hadn't seen nor heard from the others since re ositioning. Already de rived of s leep for 48 hours given the events that led up to this p int, we did our best to maintain our professionalism and pla what to do next, however, exhausted and mentally fatigu d, it was difficult not to lose focus and dwell on our friend's sa ety. We were li erally in the middle of nowhere: 30 minutes or so by boat sou h of the city of Porto de Moz, on the Jaurucu River in the Br zilian State of Para. This massive area of Para bears the blata t scares of unchecked logging and environmental degradatio . Areas once adorned by life harboring green swaths of and nt forests today remain barren fields of burnt shrubs where e en cattle find it difficult to graze. A handful of individuals m ke the millions, the forest is withering away faster than a de d flower, and the communities who rely on the forest's dwind ing bounty are being further impoverished and forced to remai silent for fear ofreprisals. Without doubt, Para is the poster st te for Amazon destruction, injustice and violence. The plann d community protest was simple, yet, historically significa tin that nothing like this had been mounted in the Amazon s nce the days of the late' rubber taper Chico 37
Mendez, who was killed in 1988. Over 400 community members using over one hundred small boats blockaded the Jaurucu River—the local illegal-logging highway—to take a stand and call Brazil's and the international community's attention to the scale of the problem and their plight. Their demand is for the creation of a RESEX or a sustainable reserve (and area of forest legally recognized by the government) whereby sustainable harvesting programs would be permitted, such as acai extraction, but logging cut out. Greenpeace supports their demands and did not plan this protest, but were asked to give moral and logistical assistance—or international media muscle, if you wish. It was the community's party; we were there to help. Something they need a lot of. Over the last three years, I've been Greenpeace Amazon's video cameraman/ producer documenting the work of not only Greenpeace in the area, but of the hundreds of local communities who are also fighting to halt or at least decelerate the wave of destruction that continues to spread throughout the region at an unprecedented rate. Their work is far from easy given that the State of Para is essentially a lawless land. To quote my Brazilian friend and Greenpeace chief, Paulo Addrio, "Para is the wild west of Brazil." Everyone is armed, anger and anguish fill their faces, and a life can be ordered erased for literally 20 dollars. The proof is in the statistics. According to the Comissao Pastoral da Terra (Land Pastoral Commission), a Roman Catholic group that advocates land reform, the last decade has seen the assassination of over 1000 Brazilians in Para; many environmental activists or individuals working towards land reform. Just last July a prominent land reform activist from the Rural Workers Union in Altamira (South of Porto de Moz on the Xingu River), Bartolomeu Morais da Silva, 44, was found dead on the side of a road in Para. Both his legs had been broken, and the coroner retrieved 12 slugs from his skull. His was the second "hit" in A-Itamira that month. State of War In general, Brazil is a violent country. Over 40,000 murders a year has earned Brazil the not-so-distinct United Nation's status of being a country at war. But in the middle lands of Para we're not talking about massive crime filled cities where drug lords dance with the police and government over power, control and money. We're talking about areas with populations less than that of a small stadium crowd. Millions too are at stake, but the contraband here is what the locals call ouro verde, or green gold: mahogany for example. On board with us during this protest were three men, all with price tags on their heads and all equally committed to not necessarily preserving the Amazon forest by putting a bubble over it, but the prevention of its foreseeable destruction. They search for solutions that will allow the forest, in a sustainable way, to benefit all and improve the quality of life for millions who call the Amazon home. 29-year-old Tarcisio Feitosa da Silva works with CIMI (Conselho Indigenista Missionario—Indianist Missionary Council) and is the coordinator of MDTX (Movimento pelo Desenvolvimento da Transamazonica e X ingu—Transamazonic and Xingu Development Movement). Tarcisio is also currently 38
filling the shoes of a coworker who was gunned down at home in front of his wife and kids in August of 2001. Ademir A lfeu Federicci was the leader of MDTX that is based out of Altamira. Prior to his death, loggers would jest that he himself should invest in the logging trade, because he would need wood to build his own coffin. Sadly the police treated the threat lightly, but those behind the threats did not. On a typically humid and hot Amazonian night Federicci and his wife slept leaving the front door open to catch what little air moves in the unforgiving tropics. Two men entered their house and shot him dead. I first met Tarcisio the previous year, as we were held up in a hotel north of Sao Felix do Xingu (another hot spot for violence and illegal logging on the Xingu River), awaiting the arrival of IBAMA (the Brazilian environmental enforcement agency) and their much anticipated AK-47s for personal security. The Mystery TV Tarcisio is a meek looking individual who stands little more than 5.5 feet, with huge brown eyes that no doubt leave women weak at the knees. My Portuguese during this particular adventure had improved, but it was still a task to understand everything. However, when I asked Tarcisio about his late friend and colleague Ademir, he explained clearly and slowly, that what incensed him most was that the local authorities wrote off Federicci's murder as a robbery gone awry. The police had commented that the two "would-be-bandits" were in fact only after the couple's television and VCR—a common happenstance all throughout Brazil. They paid little attention to the fact that Federicci and his wife owned neither. Idalino Nunes de Assis is the president ofthe STR (Sindicato dos Trabalhadores Rurais—Rural Workers' Union), and works with the Comite pelo Desenvolvimento Sustentavel Porto de Moz. He and I also met just over a year or so ago when I produced a video for Greenpeace where we interviewed Mr. Nunes who then passionately and profoundly expressed on tape the need for land reform in the Amazon and more specifically the creation of a RESEX. He lives in Porto de Moz and has few friends in the logging sector: he lives in hiding the majority of time. Idalino is 56 and could quite easily pass for anyone's grandfather. He is in fact a grandfather and father of 6. With a gentle caring charm about him what you notice first is that he doesn't speak often. He usually, quietly, hovers along the sidelines ofconversations interjecting rarely. But when he does address crowds his leadership qualities quickly move to the fore and the conviction of his beliefs thunder from him as if he were meant to head a nation. He's an impressive leader inspired not with what the future could bring but fuelled passionately with the urgent need to change the present. "1 believe it is better to die than continue to live a life like this" is his axiom. Paulo Addrio and I go way back. The Greenpeace Amazon campaign had always been a dream of his, and now it has grown into full fruition. His campaign has scored huge in that Greenpeace has exposed several massive illegal-logging operations and is now a critical player in Brazilian political debates surrounding the future of the Amazon. In October of last year, Greenpeace released a document entitled "Partners in Mahogany Crime," after years of maBRAZZIL -JANUARY 2003.
hogany investigations in Para. They pulled no punches and named all who play a prominent role in the illegal Mahogany industry. The report burned through the Brazilian media, and ended costing the mafia millions in fines and seized woods. So it is easy to see that his work doesn't please all. Paulo began receiving death threats a year ago and is constantly changing routines, donning costumes and fighting with authorities, pressuring them on the need to protect the forest as well as those who are trying to protect the forest. I fear for all three of my friendsâ€”their work is important, the area of their work incredibly dangerous as the protest we attended turned out to be. A Feeling of Success The river blockade started out slowly as does everything in this part of the world. We arrive at the Jaurucu River early Sept 19th, and already a handful of people was in the water putting up poles and cables to moor their boats into blockade position. As the day progressed, more and more community crafts began to arrive. By 5 pm the river was officially blocked with an impressive line of over 100 small riverboats. Each one filled with families: women, children, the elderly. Community members joined together, some meeting for the first time, as they cheered their own accomplishment. Banners saying, "stop the destruction", "we'll fight for our land" and "our land our future" were everywhere (in Portuguese, of course). The feeling of accomplishment was overwhelming. The first night had passed peacefully, we had been visited by the local civil police who just wanted to see what was going on, and the local commercial association of Porto de Moz arrived to hear the community's concerns and defend their own personal interests in the logging trade. The juxtaposition of the latter meeting couldn't be more glaring. The President of the association, a logger, was ostentatiously adorned in goldâ€” fashion tips from Mr. T in the 80s probably. In stark contrast however were the hundreds of community members with clothing tattered and frayed. As he stood plump and healthy, they had hunger in their eyes. The communities complained of not having enough to eat because the forest is disappearing, the representatives from the Commercial Association of Porto de Moz countered that Porto de Moz needed the logging sector to continue to develop and that the RESEX would hinder that process. Nevertheless, they put on polite faces for the cameras, and the association and their gold left in a flurry of waves and ciaos. We had all felt that the protest would probably carry on like this for the next four to five days: calmly, quietly and peacefully. Word had already gone out that the protest was taking place, and word back via jungle communications was that the loggers wanted to avoid any negative media attention, and hence would probably hang low for a couple of days. There is safety, or so we thought, in numbers. Especially, when some are representatives from the media such as Globo and Record TV (two Brazilian Networks) who were both on board and eager to talk with anyone with a chainsaw. Surprisingly, the first log barge approached on the second day. It had paid little attention to the blockade and tried to just BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
peacefully coast hrough, until Flavio one of Greenpeace's Brazilian volunte rs (and captain of a large riverboat) headed him off with a sm 11 Zodiac and through several clever maneuvers forced him ti stop. As we board d the barge, heaped in logs, the captain quickly mention d, "Everyone on board is armed and organized". Nice. W en questioned by one of Greenpeace's campaigners which fs est project the logs had been harvested from, the captain way d his finger in several directions quickly, pulled his cap o er his eyes and replied "some project over there". He had ni legal papers, it was obvious to us then, and would be confi ed later by IBAMA, that every log on his barge was illegal y cut. As more info ation surfaced, we discovered that the log barge's captain, Andre Campos, was actually the mayor of Porto de Moz's brother. It's been a long established fact the mayor of Porto d Moz is not a huge fan of environmentalists, or reserves or 11 ts of land for the community. He is in fact a logger himself aid owns two sawmills in Porto de Moz. He's a heavy et character, well groomed although smarmy in presence. Gi n his financial interests it was to no one's surprise that he f els the city of Porto de Moz and the immediate region can easil "accommodate 6 large international logging companies" (an additional 4). He also believes the idea of reserve is some hing that will stagnate development in the region, and hind r the town's prosperity. As the log b ge sat quietly along the bank of the river, and dusk began to cl se in, the community got worried that Andre would try and m ke a break for it later in the evening. So, on mass, they boar ied the barge and negotiated with Andre to throw a few mor lines out into the forest to further secure the barge. The barg , loaded, is approximately 4,000 tons. So their concerns were j stifled, and Andre, begrudgingly, agreed. A Break in he Night The blocka e was just that, a protest to stop all those loggers who use e river, explain the situation and try and talk some sense ints these chainsaw-wielding bandits. Some of those who were stopped agreed to moor over night and not create problem', and others had harsh words to say before turning around and heading back up river in a huff. However the evening's plight began when Nel, an infamously violent logger in the area, showed up at the protest in his boat demanding to pass through given he had ill people on board. In actual fact, Nel had heard about the blockade and had cherry-picked two or three people with malaria from a nearby village to use them as an excuse to circumnavigate the situation. Being prepared for all, Greenpeace hac a doctor on board who offered to attend to the sick, and if it we e discovered that they were truly ill, Greenpeace would administer quick aid, supply a faster watercraft and take those in need to a hospital. Nel didn't even want to see the doctor. Screaming and flailing about he threatened all and swore he would pass through the blockade one way or another. Common sense prevailed with the wife of a man who had come down with malaria and she wanted the doctor to attend to her 39
husband and the use of much faster transportation. The ill were taken to the hospital, and Nel was left fuming on board his boat. This was at about 7:30 pm. About 1:15 am, Dave Logie (Greenpeace's logistics man) and I were fiddling about with the computers and satellite uplinks wonderful technology, but it needs to be pampered— when someone ran into the cabin saying that the log barge was making a break for it. Without a moment's hesitation Dave had jumped in Greenpeace's large inflatable zodiac called the Anaconda, and I went for the camera and leaped into a small aluminum boat. The first image that flickered in my camera's eyepiece was that of Dave and the Anaconda crashing into the side of the monster barge mustering all the horsepower he could to push it into the forest again and stave off what was looking to be a catastrophe in the making. I could hear Andre gunning his engines, full throttle, aiming the barge towards the blockade. More screams filled the air from the communities tide to the blockade in the path of the barge's furry. It carried on like this for 5 minutes, and then the Veloz, a large Amazonian river boat that had brought us to this region, veered in to aid the Anaconda. At this point I left the small boat and boarded the barge, as did many others. Scuffles were breaking out everywhere you looked as the loggers were aggressively attacking community members. Greenpeace volunteers shouted "ca/ma" and reminded all, that no matter what the loggers were initiating, we were here participating in a peaceful protest and needed to respond peacefully—regardless of the outcome. Suddenly I realized that I was in the violent maelstrom. A dark room on the second deck of the barge's ship where 4 or 5 rolled were locked on floor in a mortal battle as another 20 or so tried to pull them apart. A photographer, Flavio, suddenly jumped to his feet and yelled, "1, 2, 3 the fight's OVER!" (or in Portuguese "Acabou a briga!"). A somewhat gentle calm filled the dark room, and then as quickly as it began, the melee was over. The barge had been stopped. Our night's work carried on, as at this point international press releases had to be written and sent, images had to be edited, authorities contacted, and we all really needed a moment to rethink what exactly had happened. The Civil Police arrived three hours later with an ambulance/boat. Luckily, no one was seriously injured. Many quickly praised Dave for his actions. One community member estimates that Dave saved about 80 lives. We all thanked him. The next day, the mayor of Porto de Moz, Gerson Campos, arrived distancing himself from his brother's action as the cameras from Globo and Record rolled. IBAMA was also flown in, and within 10 minutes of their arrival Andre Campos admitted, on camera, that the barge in fact was "100 percent i I legal". The night's festivities provided the Globo and Record networks with, as I've come to learn it over the decades, "Great TV". Fernanda Fernandes from TV Record (I was working for them too), was scheduled to head off later that afternoon. She needed to catch a flight from Porto de Moz. Dave, Agnaldo, Reinaldo and Fernanda zipped up the river in the Anaconda for what should have been a one hour return trip for the team. Mob Scene 1 puttered about hacking images together and making copies for the TV stations that weren't able to join us when someone ran into the cabin saying that Dave and the gang had
gone missing. We knew that Porto de Moz would be a little sensitive today, which is why a team was sent, but it is a biggish city, with a national airport. There shouldn't have been a problem. However, when Dave, Reinaldo and Fernanda arrived at the airport, they were immediately surrounded by a mob of loggers that seemed to only grow. They shouted and screamed obscenities and their aggression grew as more joined into the thick. Dave was labeled the "Gringo" as he tried to calm the furious mass in his broken Portuguese. Fernanda sighed a breathe of relief as she saw the mayor, Gerson Campos, arrive, but her relief was suddenly eclipsed by terror when she realized that instead of ameliorating the situation, he fuelled the anger by screaming, "My brother's in jail, you'll pay for this". The lynch mob grabbed, poked and sucker punched the three and ended up confiscating and destroying the videocassettes that Fernanda had on her person. The mayor didn't want Brazil to see the illegal and violent empire he rules. When the police finally arrived, Dave, Reinaldo and Fernanda thought that they were done. The mob was large, angry, and so out ofcontrol, that anything could have happened in that climate. The police fired shots into the sky, and told our peers that it was now or never to run into a van that they had in the area. They wouldn't be able to hold back the mob much longer. After three hours on the boat without news, there was a huge scream of joy when the radio silence was broken by Dave's voice on the Anaconda's radio calmly saying, "We're heading to the Veloz, we'll see you in 20 minutes". A flurry of hugs and embraces broke as the group, although startled-looking and one in tears, rejoined us. The ordeal was detailed and those of us who hadn't experienced the trauma could not fathom what it must have been like. The discussions were quickly broken off, and it was back to planning and fear when it was learned that the mayor of Porto de Moz was now planning on filling another barge full of loggers to come and find the troublemakers. Our last night in Para would be a long and tense occasion. With another route in mind, the captain of the Veloz managed to assure our safety given the police said they couldn't—by circumnavigating at night through lesser-traveled tributaries. The next morning we were on the Solimbes River heading to Manaus. We had succeeded to escape, although those community members who live in and around the area are still being threatened, and in some cases beaten. Para's legacy, for me, will be a bad memory, but for those who are fighting for their very basic right to survive and put a roof over their heads, the nightmare continues and will continue. We cannot relax, even though we live miles away either on safe islands in the south, or in well designed fortresses in the North, because our friends, Tarcisio, Idalino and their colleagues are all in danger. This will not stop here.
Todd Southgate holds a Masters Degree in Environmental Studies from York University in Toronto, Canada. He was also a journalist in Canada for City TV, and later, the CBC. He's produced over 20 documentaries about environmental problems around the world, many of which have been prestigiously awarded. He currently lives in Florianopolis, state of Santa Catarina, Brazil, working in web design and communications consulting. His latest project is the development of a web portal called www.lagoavirtual.com—a virtual city in the south of Brazil. For more detailed information about Todd his résumé can be found at www.videographer.savethisplanet.com . His email: tsouthgate(&,hotmail.com
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An Amazon Rendezvous Here's Parintins. A place of magic and mystery. We felt something special right from the beginning. It's a bustling city; people have cell phones and computers, but retain a deep attachment to the indigenous culture that surrounds them. RITA SHANNON KOESER
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1w:s surrounded by a sea of yellow T-shi all saying "English School". They ere worn by teenage girls with friend!1 faces and sweet smiles who were I ughing and joking. The music and d cing were almost about to begin, so I didn't have too much time to spend lking to Glaucia and her friends. It as a rainy, humid April night in the A azon town of Parintins, and I was o e of several tourists for whom the loc 1 people were putting on a small sampl of their famous folklore festival (F stival FolclOrico de Parintins) with t es place in June. This was the "Boi B mbe Festival of which we had heard o much, a festival in the middle of the Amazon that is now almost a rival i popularity to Rio's Carnaval in Brazil. I h d arrived that morning aboard the cr ise ship Caronia. We had been on the hip for almost 2 weeks and this was th highlight of the cruise, sailing on the ighty and legendary Amazon river, he cruise would wind up in Mana s, a city known as the Paris of South merica in the 19th century because of the elegant houses of the wealth rubber barons and the stunning o era house they had built in this
city located in the heart of the Amazon forest. For the past few days we had been stopping at several river towns to explore, see local entertainments, meet the people and buy some oftheir colorful handicrafts. We were also learning about the local flora fauna. and Santarem and Alter do ChAo had been fascinating and the people were welcoming. In Santarem there were many beautiful parrots, and it was in Alter do Cho that VIT Saw our first sloths. Many of the citizens were walking dresses were serving us fruit drinks and around the town with these animals and it water. At one side of the theater local people seems they had made pets of them. I'll never forget when some of them made were selling handicrafts like the feathered headdresses the entertainers wore, Andrew, our cruise director, take a picâ€˘ necklaces, and statues. As we had a little ture with a sloth. He wasn't sure how to time before the start of the performance, hold it, so both tourists and local people I thought it might be a good idea to look had a good laugh at his expense! But now we were in Parintins (pop. over some of the crafts and see what I 80,000) a town located on the right bank could buy for souvenirs. Little did I know of the Amazon river on the island of that this decision would introduce me to Tupinambarana about 420 km (261 miles) some charming people who would beeast of Manaus. Parintins, a place of come lasting friends, and I would be magic and mystery. We felt something gaining an enduring attachment to this special right from the beginning. It's a enchanted place. bustling city with busy shops, a beautiful Talk, Jokes and Laugh cathedral dedicated to the city's patron saint, and many motorcycles, bicycles, Now as I was heading for the craft and scooters. stand, I saw those girls in the yellow The people have cell phones and comshirts with .the words "English School" puters, but they retain a deep attachment written in red and blue. As an ESL (Ento the indigenous .culture that surrounds glish as a second language) teacher of them. There is an immense pride in their city and their festival. It was a place that, many years, I was intrigued, so I went up through its festival, would introduce us to them and starting talking, forgetting to some of the legends, rites, and rituals about the crafts and never buying the of the indigenous people of the Amazon souvenirs. But what I gained was much more valuable than souvenirs. forest. They were students at the English Thus in the evening I found myself at School, an English language school run an outdoor rehearsal theater sitting with in the town by Catarina Picanco, or as she the other tourists surrounded by colorful would tell me later, "they call me Kathy". scenery, listening to the beating of the The girls were Kathy's students and studdrums, and waiting for the show to begin. Some ofthe young entertainers who would ied with her three times a week in her one take part in the show and were wearing room school equipped with a video, comfantastic costumes with feathered head- puter, and air conditioning. This school 42
supplemented their English classes at their regular school. Kathy's method stresses every day situations, and having lived and studied in the U.S., she teaches her students about American culture and lifestyle. They were here at the performance hoping to meet some Americans and practice their English. Glaucia, her cousin Ynessa, and their friends Paola, and Simone were happy to talk to me. Before we knew it we were all talking, joking, and laughing as if we had known each other for years. Glaucia and I established a special rapport right away. They told me about the English School and how they liked learning English and practicing it with the tourists who come on the cruise ships during the season. Their English was impressive, and they were eager to speak to an American. We talked about American music (Glaucia let me know that she loved the Backstreet Boys immensely!!), the USA and Brazil, and most importantly they told me about the Festival and the performance I was about to see. I learned that there is an intense but goodhearted rivalry in the whole town on the last three days of June when the festival takes place. Some people root for one team and some for the other. The performance revolves around the story of the killing and resurrection of a bull. There are two teams telling the story in music, dance, and song. Glaucia, with BRAZZIL -JANUARY 2003
her brilliant smile, told me she is a fan of Caprichoso, the blue bull and her cousin Ynessa is a fan of the red bull called Garantido. We had a good laugh about the cousins' rivalry. Now I knew why the words "English School" on the shirts were in red and blue. I took pictures with the girls and wished I had more time to spend with them, but the performance was about to begin, so we said our goodbyes. The performance was spellbinding. It lasted two hours. Two hours of music, dance, beating of drums, fireworks, fantastic costumes, chanting and song. And this was just a small sampling ofthe great festival that takes place every year on June 28, 29, and 30, a festival that has been described as "an outdoor opera in the middle of the Amazon forest". This is a big celebration of the indigenous culture of the people of the Amazon.
Amazon tribes who falls in love with a warrior who lives on the moon. When t e moon was full she tried hard to reach t warrior. Her friends tried to convince h r that this was hopeless, but she wouldn t stop hoping. Then one night deep in the jungle s e saw the reflection of the moon in a lak Thinking her loved one had come to ea h at last, she jumped into the lake a d drowned. But the warrior did exist. Ta ing pity on the poor girl who had fallen n love with him, he transformed her in o the giant water lily, known as Vivid Regia. These legends and many othe s are part of the show. For six hours on each of the three nights in June there are the beating oft e drums, chanting, fireworks, singing a d dancing of beautiful young people n incredible costumes. There are giant flo ts and decorations. Everything is made I cally. The dances and songs, called toads Bull Story are conceived and worked on during ti e year. The performance tells the basic story The artistic creativity ofthe people â€˘ f of a young peasant couple, Catarina and Parintins is known throughout Braz I. Francisco. Catarina being pregnant has a The competition between the two ri al craving for the tongue of a bull. Fran- bulls, Caprichoso (Capricious, the bl e cisco kills his master's favorite bull, cuts bull) and Garantido (Guaranteed, the rd out the tongue and gives it to his wife to bull), is before a panel ofjudges who w II eat. Scared that his master would have judge each team on its singing, danci g, him killed for this, he asks the local priest costumes, and the chanting of their fa s. for help. The priest brings the bull back The island, at this time, is surroundâ€˘ d to life with much drama, spectacle, drum- by the boats of the tourists who ha e ming and fireworks, and Francisco's life come for the festival. The performanc is held at the Bumbodromo, the huge p ris spared. The story has evolved over the years, pose built stadium that holds 40,000 sp cand now the play incorporates many tators. The -fans of Caprichoso sit on o e Amazonian legends and myths. The side of the stadium and the fans f church priest is now an Indian sorcerer Garantido on the other. Each side of tie and the story takes place inside the forest. stadium is awash in either blue or rd. Amazon animals, forest gods, and sha- The boi-bumbas (people dressed in b II mans all have their parts to play. costumes) dance to the beat of the druĂ is One of the legends is of an enchanted and the chanting of their team. The whole town and the tourists Eire boy named Norato who became an enormous snake when he grew up. At night he caught up in the spirit of the festiv I. left his snake's body and became a man. They dance in the streets during the d y He was well loved and had many friends and go to the Bumbeidromo for the perin the forest, but at dawn Norato trans- formances at night. Everyone roots or formed into a snake again. He could only either the blue bull or the red. Though e become a man at night. Many Shamans competition is mostly in a spirit of n and others tried to help him break the sometimes fanaticism takes hold. Peo le spell but nobody ever could. They say in the town even paint their houses bl e that Norato is still roaming the rivers of or red. the Amazon. The great snake legend They tell of one lady, a fan of comes from the real huge snakes like Garantido, who painted her house r d. anacondas that live in the Amazon re- Not being happy with this alone, she t en went on to paint her pool red, too. T en gion. Even the beautiful giant water lilies there is the other lady, a fan ofCapricho o, of the Amazon river have a legend. This who painted her house blue, and dur g one is about an Indian girl from one ofthe the time of the festival won't let er BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
husband park his car in their garage because the car is red!! I'll Be Back After our performance at the rehearsal theater, I looked for the girls to tell them how much I enjoyed it and how much I'd like to come back in June to attend the big festival, but to my disappointment, I couldn't find them. I got back on the ship and continued the voyage, but I couldn't forget Glaucia, the other girls, Parintins and the festival. After I returned home and developed my photos I knew I wanted to try to contact them again. I didn't know how because I didn't know their last names or addresses. Then I remembered the English School. Not having the address of the English School or knowing the name at the director at this time, I sent a letter with the pictures to: Director, English School, Parintins, Amazonas, Brazil. I had no idea if my letter would ever reach the correct destination. To my surprise and delight eight days later, I had an e-mail from Glaucia. She told me that she and the other girls had been thinking about me, too and were glad we were back in touch. Shortly after that, I heard from, Kathy, the director of the English School, her daughter, Carol and some of the other students. Now I have been in contact with all of them for almost 2 years. Glaucia and I have a very close and special relationship. She will come visit me, and I will go back to Parintins to visit her, Kathy and the students at the English school. I'll go back to Parintins for the festival soon. Glaucia asked me recently, "Are you Caprichoso or Garantido?" Well, I'll have to think about that one! Oh, by the way, Kathy sent me one of those yellow t-shirts for Christmas last year! Rita Shannon Koeser is a freelance writer and an ESL teacher who loves traveling and meeting and writing about people in foreign countries. She has traveled widely and speaks French and some Spanish. She has lived on a remote island in Scotland and in Paris. She has a special love for Brazil and her Brazilian friends and is now learning Portuguese. In the preparation of this article, she would like to acknowledge, with gratitude, the help of her friend, Glaucia. Rita can be reached at ritashko(&,earthlink.net 43
"Sounds that overflow the listener's brain, so sweet, that joy is almost pain" Percy Bysshe Shelley For me, this sums up the beguiling enchantment of the bossa nova and. the genius of Brazilian writers such as Ant6nio Carlos Jobim, Luiz Bonta, Ivan Lins and others, whose music has long been my great passion. The opening lyrics of Tom Jobim's magical "Corcovado" "Urn cantinho, urn viol-do" (a cosy spot, a guitar...) reflects perfectly the sentiments of guitarist Oscar Castro Neves "to play the music we like for our friends". We had promised Rio we would be back, not only to soak up a second helping of her intoxicating atmosphere, but to take more time to follow the Jobim tfail in greater detail. This time we chose to fly yang, so that the moment we stepped on-board, we felt we were "in Brazil"! We stayed at the Hotel Mar Ipanema in the heart of the Ipanema district this time, where more "Wow" factors lay in store around the bossa nova haunts, courtesy of our English guide, Lisa Graham, and her Brazilian husband, Miguel, (a guitarist and— what luck!—a keen bossa nova fan!) Being dedicated Jobimophiles, we had asked to be shown all the places Tom loved to go. In addition to our own research prior to the trip, Lisa and Miguel (and their very useful set of wheels!) had further exciting places lined up for us. Apart from the Garota de Ipanema Café and Vinicius' Bar on the opposite corner, renowned for being the favourite—shall we say, refreshment stops—of Tom Jobim and poet Vinicius de Moraes, (went there, bought the T-shirts), we were also driven to see the beautiful hillside Jobim residence in the stylish Jardim Botanic° district, (a private estate with security guards at every corner). We viewed from a respectful distance only, and did not take photographs. Later we visited the magnificent Botanical Gardens to see Tom's favourite tree—the towering sumaiema—where he would go to relax. A commemorative plaque is now placed by the tree. (Following Tom's untimely death in 1994, his body was laid "in state" in the Botanical Gardens for a day, before he was finally laid to rest.) The tree is featured on the front sleeve of Tom's CD Minha Alma Canta. Miguel was keen to find out just how many Brazilian songs I knew, 44
(or didn't) and so we hummed along together, comparing notes as we strolled through the gardens. There is a lovely view here ofCristo Redentor at the end of an avenue of palm trees. It did not escape our notice during our visit that the elections were in full swing, with placards just everywhere, one saying."Vote Carlos Santana". Oh, really? Our other reason for returning to Rio was to visit "Casa Jimmy", a shelter for street children managed and run by Task Brasil Trust (The Abandoned Street Kids of Brazil), from London, which we actively support. They do admirable work in giving these children a new start in life. hopefully with the aim of reintegrating them into their families. The shelter was purchased through the generosity ofrockguitarist Jimmy Page, and it was so special for my husband. Tony, and myself to visit and meet the children and staff personally. We received a most warm welcome and the children are quite delightful. Later we raided two music stores in the smart Ipanema shopping district, firstly the cosy Toca do Vinicius on Rua Vinicius de Moraes, an Aladdin's cave of Brazilian music and books. We bought three CDs. Upstairs is a permanent museum and history of bossa nova, in particular of Vinicius de Moraes, and among the treasured belongings we saw was his original hand-written lyrics in pencil, on flimsy paper, for the classic favourite "S6 Danco Samba". Big Wow factor! Lisa then told us of the newlyopened Livraria da Travessa in Rua Visconde de Piraja, where we feasted on more CDs, books and videos. Upstairs was a very pleasant, airy cafe where we relaxed with a delicious lunch. Four more CDs purchased, plus a Portuguese/ English dictionary! That night we had dinner at the smart jazz restaurant, Mistura Fina where many international artists have performed. It was invaluable having Lisa and Miguel with us, not least because Miguel told us about a gig the following night by Os Cariocas at a sVvish restaurant/bar in Rio, the Cais do Oriente. He explained that this group was very famous, among the most popular and successful artists who emanated from the birth of the bossa nova in the sixties, and that this appearance was a rare treat not to
On Johim's Track Being dedicated Jobimophiles, we had asked to be shown all the places Tom Jobim loved to go to, including Tom's favourite tree— the towering sumatima, in the Botanical Gardens—where he would go to relax. LIZ ASHTON
BRALLIL -JANUARY 2003
be missed. I thought I knew most of the 'big' names in the world of Brazilian music, but this group was new to me. The four of us went along, and my gob was proverbially smacked. For any others who don't know, Os Cariocas is a quartet (piano, bass, drums, guitar) who also sing the popular bossa nova repertoire in the most melodic and polished close-harmony I have ever heard—kind ofBrazi lian Four Freshmen is the nearest description I can think of. We sat entranced as they weaved their magic through so many well-loved songs—you name it, they sang it. I was particularly delighted that many of the songs I have selected for my new Brazilian CD Tudo Azul were sung by them that night! Clearly I made a good choice! What amazed us even more was that the entrance charge for this unique event was the equivalent of a mere 10 dollars per head. I added their new CD (signed, of course) to my collection after the show, asking them why I had never seen them in Europe. The unbelievable reply was "no demand". Promoters, get your act together! In the short space of two days, Lisa and Miguel became firm friends, with the surprise bonus of Miguel being a musician, and I found it very touching (and a• great relief) that he seemed genuinely delighted in meeting "an English singer who loved the bossa nova so much". (Another rarity, apparently!)! had been a little apprehensive that the Brazilians might be thinking "Who is this English singer who thinks she can come over here and sing our music?" Unfortunately there was not time for me to hear Miguel play his guitar. We played them a few demo tracks of the first mix of Tudo Azul, and it seems my Portuguese passed muster, as our new friends have placed a firm order for the finished product! Lisa told me that a friend of hers used to be one of Tom Jobim's backing singers. Now there's someone I'd-like to meet! We moved on to spend three days relaxing at Lee's Pousada, an enchanting, yellow-shuttered private beach-house on the tiny island of Jaguanum (off the south coast of Rio) via private schooner, the Never-Never Land. With only two other guests staying, we were totally pampered in this idyllic hideaway with the delectable cooking of hostess Lee Randall and her staff, and we wished wc could have stayed longer on this paradise island Which, to me, evoked an atmosphere where a new novel might have been spawned. (Perhaps it was?) Lee's CD collection was quite diverse, my abiding memory being the sonorous tones of BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
Andrea Bocelli serenading our sublime solitude. Of bossa nova she had none, but was keen to purchase a copy of Tudo Azul—wow! The following morning, our next great treat lay ahead—our return to the luxurious Praia do Forte Eco-Resort on the northeast coast of Bahia. (The photographs for the CD sleeye were taken here.) Amidst tropical gardens, ocean sounds and beautiful people, the lyrical bossa nova weaved its way everywhere—CDs by maestros Caetano Veloso, Ivan Lins, Gal Costa, Joao Gilberto et al accompanied our caipirinhas (Brazilian cocktails) in the poolside bar, and Luciano entertained us live, Joao. Gilberto-style, with very pleasant voice and instincti flair for guitar at happy hour eve evening. On our final night, I joined him fo a couple of songs: "One Note Samba" a "Corcovado", including some duetti in Portuguese. Although we had a la guage barrier, music speaks, and throu h an interpreter he was able to convey o me his observation that I had a natur I feel for bossa nova. I nearly melted wi h joy. Another "Wow" for me to be singi g Brazilian music in the country of its o gin, and yet more special was wh n Luciano asked if! would sing with h' again the next night. Unfortunately by then, Varig wou d be whisking us back to-Heathrow... may e another year? Task Brasil, which has a branch n the USA, is working to raise funds a d awareness to help street children a d teenagers in Brazil.-You may visit the at wwW.taskbrasil.org.uk and em 11 them: infoAtaskbrasil.org. k Liz Ashton, the author, is n accomplished jazz singe A chance meeting with Britain's tip Brazilian band, "Sirius B", h s culminated in the recent release uf her album Tudo Azul, 13 trac from the pens of some of Brazi s best composers—Ivan Lins, D Caymmi, Luiz Bonn, in addition o Jobim.,Liz sings in both English a d Portuguese, You can hear sound sampl s from Tudo Azul via Liz's websit : www.ashtonl.clara.net Her ema I: I izashton 1.clara.co. k 45
A new musical revolution is on the rise in Salvador. At any given time of day, you are guaranteed to feel the presence of forro and reggae in the city's streets. These two genres are synonymous in depicting the flavor of modern Bahia. ANNA CHLUMSKY
Everyone in Salvador has a band. A conversation about the humidity with any given shop clerk, construction worker, or businessman almost always ends with, "well, my band is playing tonight." It becomes a ritual every night to pile the flyers and show dates handed to you during the course of the day onto your nightstand for future review. Whether it is the surfer you just met gliding across the waves on the Farol da Barra beach, or the woman who 'offered you a place to stay in her middleclass digs, all Salvadorans share one important thread—the energetic fervor of Brazilian music runs through their veins. Bahia, a large northeastern state of Brazil, has a long history of musical creativity and evolution. The most famous outbreak was in the Sixties when musicians like Caetano Veloso and Gilberto Gil invented Tropicana and MPB (Popular Brazilian Music). More ,recently, superstars such as Daniela Mercury, Chiclete corn Banana, and Asa de Aguia celebrate their Bahian roots through the extremely popular Brazilian genre of axe (life-force). All of these artists, among many more, have shaped the worldwide impression of Brazilian music. The majority of all internationally acclaimed artists continue to hail from dear Bahia. Salvador, Bahia's capital, is undeniably the heart of the Northeastern and Brazilian song. A new musical revolution is on the rise. While walking any street in Salvador, at any given time of day, you are guaranteed to feel the presence of two forces—fort-6 and reggae. Forro is a traditional type of music hailing from the Northeastern send°, or interior. The style is a mixture of European, African and indigenous rhythms heavily dependent on the accordion and percussive instruments. Reggae, of course, was popularized by Jamaican artists, and has been long embraced by the highly Afro-Brazilian population in Bahia. Now the Bahians are infusing the classic themes with a unique style and poetry unique to their own culture. These two genres are very different in their history and style, but are synonymous in depicting the flavor of modern Bahia. Forra The origins offorro are debatable. The most familiar story, and indeed the version offered to me by many, involves the English of all people. As the tale goes, a group of English settlers in Pernambuco (another Northeastern state) provided a tavern that hosted dances welcome to everyone in the area regardless of class or gender. They called the designated dances, "For All", which was adopted by the Portuguese speakers asforr6 (pronounced fo-HO with a soft 0-sound). This was the tale told my most forro musicians of the Twentieth Century. The other explanation was offered by a cultural historian named Luis da Camara Cascudo. Cascudo suspects that the term comes from an African word,forrobodo, which would mean party, or high j inks. Regardless of the origin, the spread offorro undeniably occurred in the 1940s when legendary Luiz Gonzaga, the son of an accordionist in Pernambuco, moved to the South and recorded the songs so beloved in the Northeast. The lyrics of most traditional forro recordings have a distinct theme of struggle, drought, pains of the BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
heart, as well as praise for the vida sertaneja, or life in the interior. This poetry depicting the tougher life is put to lively, celebratory music to which its listener is defenseless. It is a happy, dancing music, danced in pairs and especially played during the Festas Juninas (June festivals). The purpose of forro is not unlike that of the blues in the United States, when the plaintive lyrics are worked out by the infectious beats of the music. Today . forro is making its way into Brazilian pop culture. Radio stations all over the country are alternating pop-rock and samba tunes with the exciting and clever tunes of the progressively better looking forro bands and trios. Fan clubs are filled to the max for popular musicians such as Falamansa, Chama Chuva, and Colher de Pau. Most of these bands hail from Bahia and other Northeastern states where the music is most certainly on fire. On a rainy night at the Federal University of Bahia (UFBA)'s Biological Grounds, my friends and I were at student-organized rock "battle ofthe bands", which would be better described as pure disaster. We lost almost all of our immediate entourage, and found ourselves under the leaky roof of a broken-down shed. The shed was most likely used as a greenhouse by day, and a storage facility for mud, hay, and randy students by night. It was time to get off the campus. The three of us hailed the only cab in sight after wandering around a lonely road in the middle of the dark, damp night. We asked him to drop us off at the Praca de Santana, an ex-pat favorite hangout. Everything at the Praca was rained out, and we were out of ideas. The cab driver insisted we not call it quits, and brought us to his favorite spot, Mercado de Peixes. We soon learned that this dingy collection of bars and cafés, covered by large umbrellas, was the very best place to gauge local musical trends— not to mention drink cachaca (very hard liquor) till the sun came up. In short, the Mercado was the new favorite. Salvadorans drive up to the nightspot, ignore the questionable smell of fish and sewage, grab a table, and crank their sound systems for all to hear. Whichever table you are at, you are guaranteed the unmistakable and inescapable dings and twangs of purely joyous forro. The first stand off the street even hires a singer and keyboard ist with a drum machine to perform their latest renditions of Gilberto Gil's "Esperando Na Janela" (Waiting at the Window), and even the forro version of "I Will Survive". The better listening BRAZZIL -JANUARY 2003
was from the parking lot's blaring trunk down the way. Mercado de Peixes is most certainl not the only place to hearforro. In fact, is extremely difficult to find a place o time in Salvador where you cannot hea it. It is merely the perfect spot to experi ence the unadulterated spirit ofthe send of Bahia, and of bucolic Brazil right i the middle of a city. These days, what i found in Salvador is what the rest of th country, North, South, urban or rura cherishes on the soundwaves. Forro i now almost as popular as when Lui Gonzaga introduced it all those decade ago. Perhaps it is a quest for what is tru tangible, and significant in young Brazi ian identity. To remember the past, use i, and add to it with modern ideas is one f the most emotional ties a person can hay to his land. In such an increasingly urba society, a connection to the music to ca I your own is in itself a connection to th people you share it with.
tures, quotes and blaring sound systems devoted solely to the Prophet himself. Bahian men and Women sport their dreads as if they were the ones who made it famous, and not an hour passes by without hearing "No Woman No Cry" in rushing traffic or on the tape deck of your local café. The Praca do Reggae is the place to be if you're an Afro-Brazilian, and anyone else with great taste in music, for that matter. You walk through the door of a white stucco façade, and find yourself in an open-roofed pit crammed with reggaelovers dancing and groping their hearts out. The walls along the side are filled with giant Bob Marley faces, and the only drink sold is a mixture ofcognac and honey from a little stand impossible to reach unless you make many new friends. The entire night is clouded with sweat, smoke, and, of course, Marley tunes. The tracks sprinkled between Bob's hits are even more intriguing, however. They are Brazilian, in Portuguese, and truly different. These new tunes are a breath of Reggae fresh (or smoky?) air. Bob Marley's kingship in Salvador leaves you starving for Reggae hit it big in the 1960s, an someone local, someone different, and Brazil was no exception. Musicians sf someone new. The melodies infusing the generation heard and adored Bo Salvador reassure you that reggae, in Marley and Peter Tosh—but mostly Bo fact, does not end with Bob. Marley. Gilberto Gil himselfjust recentl Indeed it does not, and neither does released the album:Kaya N'Gan Day reggae end with Jamaica. Somewhere one of his long-awaited projects to cov r along the line, Edson Gomes and his Bob Marley songs. In short, reggae is n st fellow musicians from Cachoeira (a small, brand new. Bahian reggae, however, s touristy town in Bahia) agreed that there just making a name for itself, and th was something new to be done with this cobblestone streets of Salvador echo en hypnotic and powerful music. Edson lessly of the relaxed pulses and simpl Gomes and his band, Cao de Rap, are melodies. very much considered the pioneers of The obsession with Bob Marley di -s Bahian reggae. The tunes are sung in hard all over the world. In .Salvado Portuguese, with a little more emphasis however, obsession takes on a whole ne on brass, and with lyrics reflecting the level. The many shops of the Pelourinh trials and joys of modern, Northeastern (the historical district) are bedecked i life. the Rasta colors, with posters, caric Edson Gomes' honest lyrics and sin-
cere timbre are what fills the air refreshingly between Marley riffs. When the car goes by with its tape deck blaring, you realize that there is something deeper in the Bahian obsession with reggae—they are making it their own. Edson Gomes is certainly the most famous and recognizable reggae musician to Brazilians of all generations. He sports his famous braided halo in Rasta hues, strains his round vocals, and pulses the tunes with the skintight support of his band. Just as Bob inspired Edson, however, a new generation is inspired by Cachoeira's bravery and creativity. Younger, hipper, and culturally outspoken bands like Ada° Negro are on the rise, and they are bringing Bahian reggae
into the limelight. Sergio Cassiano, the lead vocalist of Ada° Negro, has named his influences as equal between samba, batucada (drums like Olodum) and reggae. The new bands are fusing their Brazilian roots with their international and cultural influences into a new sound of samba-reggae, which, Sergio has identified as simply "baiano". Bahian reggae is unique in sound and in theory. Edson Gomes himself does not fully adopt traditional Rasta principles. He attempts to meld the concepts that built his beloved genre with his own personal beliefs, and explains that Jesus Christ and Jah, to him, are one. The next generation, true to the struggle to distinguish themselves from the predecessors, even combats the idea of any religion connected to the music. Nengo Vieira has explained that the music to him is just that, and the original ideas are secondary. The new sound stems from the innovative rhythms and melodies of reggae, and the lyrics and beliefs of the musicians remain true to Bahian life. Salvador will forever be known as the heart of Brazilian music, and it will pump fresh life into the country as long as melody and rhythm are born. The new popularization offorro and Bahian reggae is supported and celebrated by the more
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established artists in the city, and more importantly, by the country as a whole. Reinvention is something Bahians do without a hitch thanks to their endless supply ofinspiration, influences and gifts. Brazil trusts Bahia to embody itself musically and creatively. Salvador continues to deliver magic. Recommended forro albums: Luiz Gonzaga - Melhor de Luiz Gonzaga Gilberto Gil - As Canceies de Eu, Tu, Eles Colher de Pau - Pra Mexer Falamansa - Deixa Entrar... Chama Chuva - Forro Chama Chuva Recommended reggae albums: Edson Gomes- Acorde, Levante, Lute Nengo Vieira - Somos Libertos Ada() Negro - Adiio Negro Natiruts - Natiruts Various Artists - Reggae Brasil Anna Chlumsky has lived in Salvador, and is an obsessed collector of Brazilian music. A graduate from the University of Chicago, she now lives in Brooklyn, NV. Her email: boagatinhaAhotmail.com
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Luiz Cabral, directed by Beth Lopes. wi h Clarissa Kiste and Kiko Bertholini. Cabaret Brecht — Mahagonny—The 19 0 Bertolt Brecht/Kurt Weill play The Rise d Fall of the City of Mahagonny shown in a cabaret-like atmosphere. Directed by Myri n Muniz, with the Grupo Mangard. Nlio Me Conies Verdades (Don't Tell e Truths)—Comedy. A group of people shown talking while waiting to be seen b a doctor in a free medical clinic. Written y Tacit° Rocha, directed by Luiz Serra d Marcus Cardeliquio, with Enio Goncalv Jose Ferro, Vania Barboni, and Lourdes e Moraes.
character created by him. Black, poor and gay, the artist spent 10 years in jail before rising to fame. Directed by Cearense (from Ceara state) Karin AInouz, with Lazar° Ramos, Marcelia Cartaxo, Flavio Bauraqui. Fellipe Marques, Renata Sorrah. Floriano Peixoto, and Emiliano Queiroz. Adeigio ao Sol (Adage to the Sun)—Brazil/ 1996—A couple in the early 1930s try to maintain a difficult relationship made even harder by the arrival of a young man. The background is the Sao Paulo Revolution of 1932. Directed by Xavier de Oliveira, with Claudio Marzo, Rossana Ghessa, Edwin Luisi..
JUST-RELEASED OR RE-RELEASED ENGLISH-LANGUAGE MOVIES:
Ill Amor e Erotismo - Contos da Comunidade Kaxinawa (Love and Eroticism — Short stories of the Kaxinawa Indian Community)— Several sketches based in the folkloric stories by an Indian tribe from the Brazilian Peruvian border. Written, directed and interpreted by Rosana Nieto. Fe Na Parada (It's Tough Having Faith)— How the day-to-day disappointments change a naïve housewife's outlook on life, including her faith in humankind. Written by Rogerio Blat, directed by Ernesto Piccolo, with the students from the Oflaina de Criacao de Espetaculo. A Rua da Amargura (Bitterness Street)— Jesus Christ's life according to the circus show from 1902, 0 Martir do Calvario (The Calvary Martyr). Adapted by Arildo de Barros, directed by Gabriel Villela, with the Grupo Galpao. Buda (Buddha)—Comedy. Decided to get a man she loves, a young woman appeals to religion. Monologue by Clarice Niskier. Directed by Domingos Oliveira, with Clarice Niskier.
IAI PAIll A Terra (The Earth)—Based on Euclides da Cunha Os Sertoes (Rebellion in the Back/ands) published in 1902. This is the first act—it lasts 3.5 hours—of Guerra dos Canudos (Canudos War), which have two more acts in the coming year: Homem (Man) and A Luta (The Struggle) Adapted and directed by Jose Celso Martinez Correa, with Aury Porto, Fransergio Araujo, Renee Gumiel, Marcelo Drummond, and Sylvia Prado. Menlo (Courage)—After losing her home to a fire, a woman finds an abandoned house where she raises her daughter. Written by Alessandro Toiler, directed by Andre Grynwask, with the Centro Momentaneo de Teatro ensemble. His (Encore)—Two characters, Ei and Psiu live in a situation in which words and gestures are continually repeated. Written by BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
My Big hat Greek Wedding (Casame o Grego), The Shipping News (Chegadas e Partidas), Sweet Home Alabama (Doce La), Serendipity (Escrito nas Estrelas), Ha Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Ha Potter e a Camara Secret a), Killing Me So ly (Mata-Me de Prazer), The Santa Claus 2 (Meu Papai E Noel 2), My First Mister ( Primeiro Homem), The Great Dictator 0 Grande Ditador), Crush (0 Que El's Querem), The Tuxedo (0 Terno de D is Bilhiies de Dolares), Like Mike (Peque 4s Grandes Astros), Stuart Little 2 (Stuart Lit le 2), Ultimate X (Ultimate X)
A Vida em Cana (Life in Sugarcane/Jail Brazil/2001—Documentary directed by Jo e Wolney Atalla. The hard life of Brazili n sugar cane cutters. Interviews with the wo kers during the harvest show a suffering gro who is still full of hope and dreams. onibus 174 (Bus 174)—Brazil/2002—A etelling of the infamous June 12, 2000 us hijack in Rio de Janeiro using newsreel fo • age. The episode ended tragically with II e hijacker and a hostage being killed by ii e police, after hours of fruitless negotiatio s. Cidade de Deus (City of God)—Bra il/ 2002—Based on Paulo Lins's novel of s e name. An inside picture ofRio'sfavela Cid de de Deus. How Dadinho e Buscape grow us in world of drugs and crime. Directed sy Fernando Meirelles and Katia Lund, w th unknown actors, including Alexan re Rodrigues, Leandro Firmino da Elora, 'eu Jorge, Matheus Nachtergaele, and Phell pe Haagensen. • Edificio Master (Master Building)—Br. ill 2002—A documentary showing a week in the lives of people living in the Master bui ding in Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro. Direc ed by Eduardo Coutinho. Janela da Alma (Soul's Window)—Br. ill 2001—Documentary on vision problems nd its impact on life and creativity. Among he interviewees: writer Jose Camargo, Ger an filmmaker Win Wender, and music an Hermeto Pascoal. Directed by Joao Jars im and Walter Carvalho. Lara (Lara)—Brazil/2002—The story of actress Odete Lara, a Brazilian sex symbo in the '60s. Her spritual journey and figh to excel as an artist. Directed by Ana M ria Magalhaes, with Maria Manoela, Christ ne Fernandes, Caco Ciocler, and Tuca Andr da Madame Said (Madam Satan)—Bra iiFrance/2002—The life ofJoao Francisco os Santos, who became famous in the 1930s nd 1940s in Rio interpreting Madame Sa , a
1. Seu Creysson Vidia i Obria (Objetiva)
Casseta & Planeta (1 — 7) 2. 0 Homem Duplicado (Companhia
das Letras) Jose Saramago (2 —6) 3.. Harry Potter e o Calice defog() (Rocco)
J.K. Rowling (4— 76) 4. Harry Potter e o Prisioneiro de Azkaban
(Rocco) J.K. Rowling (3 —96) 5. A Intimaelio (Rocco) John Grisham (5 —
20) 6. Cidade de Deus (Companhia das Letras)
Paulo Lins (8— 14) 7. 0 Senhor dos Aneis — Edicao Completa
(Martins Fontes) J.R.R. Tolkien (10 — 57) 8. As Mentiras Que os Homens Contam
(Objetiva) Luis Fernando Verissimo (6 — 104) 9. Harry Potter e a Camara Secreta (Rocco) J.K. Rowling (7— 115) 10. 0 Canto da Sereia (Objetiva) Nelson Motta (0 - 3)
NINFICTIIN I. Tudo Tern Seu Preco (Vida & •
Consciencia) Zibia Gasparetto (1 —4) 2. Quern Mexeu no Meu Queijo? (Record)
Spencer Johnson (3 — 104) 3. A Ditadura Envergonhada (Companhia
das Letras) Elio Gaspari (4 — 5) 4. A Semente da Vit6ria (Senac) Nuno Co-
bra (5 — 79) 5. 0 Sentido da Vida (Sextante) Bradley
Trevor Greive (2 —23) 6. A Ditadura Escancarada (Companhia
das Letras) Elio Gaspari (8 — 4) 7. Um Dia Daqueles (Sextante) Bradley Trevor Greive (6 — 86) 8. Voce E Insubstituivel (Sextante) Augusto Jorge Cury (7 — n) 9. Corinthians E Preto no Branco (DBA) Washington Olivetto (0 - 10) 10. Estacao Carandiru (Companhia das Letras) Drauzio Varella (0- 143) The first number inside the parentheses tells the position the book was in the previous week. The second number indicates for how many weeks the book is in the list. According to /sto E Genie — January 13, 2003 www.istoegente.com.br 49
TABLETS GPoxtro 6- PII)i( STOP!!!
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The two most beautiful ecotrip locations in two completely different parts of Brazil. Guided tours with everything included.
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ALL INFO ON ADS CAN BE FOUND AT: http://www.brazzil.com/placead.htm
Nio pague mais aluguel!I
Do not pay rent anymore!! Programa Especial para Primeiros Compradores de Casa. First Time Home Buyers Program.
$3,000 de eotrada someote. $3,000 down payment only Call Beno at 310-925-8327
Going to Rio?
BRAZIL-CALIFORNIA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE (323) 658-7402
www.brazikalifornia.com ' 8484 Wilshire Blvd Ste 260 - Beverly Hills, CA 90211 E-mail:email@example.com
WVVVV.VERDEAMARELO.N ET VERDE AMAREs1.0 IS A TRADEMARK OF
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GOING TO RIO?
We bring you infectious energry, a driving rhythm, and the most innovative Brazilian instrumental music
(310) 839-3788 I WHEREVER YOU ARE IN THIS GALAXY lJJ
BEAT HOTEL PRICES! Great location. 2brm, 2bath (suite), phone/fax, pool, sauna, gym, playground, security, garage, etc. Great for family. Si 00/day (5200 high season). .See pictures/informations:
PROOFREADING WRITING MAINTAINING MAILING LIST EVERYTHING ELSE
nocondo.com or call
I WANT MORE INFORMATION ON ADVERTISING IN PLEASE SEND ME A MEDIA KIT.
OW*: CO \TACT: ADDRESS: CIP(, ST, ZIP: PHONE: PRODUCT:
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BRAZZIL - PO BOX 50536 LOS ANGELES, CA 90050
Call (323)255-8062 or E-mail: email@example.com
For Ad, call (323))'255-8062 or E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org 50
BRAZZIL -JANUARY 2003
> MIA LIVIII Enterprises, Suite 16 6751 Macon Road, Columbus, GA 31907 USA - Phone (706) 569-5494
ega I Servicos Legais, consultas sem limite, cartas, chamadas e outros beneficios incluidos, para individuos somente $26 por mos. Tambem oferece protegao para familias ou neg6cios pequenos. (909) 392-5766 ou email@example.com  'ac ma mg
brazzil-ADS (3231255.8062 ;COS WorldTech announces two new pocket guides: (1) Rio de Janeiro; (2) Salvador, Bahia. For information WorldTech@erols.com 
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Wanted: Men & Women 18-40 interested in meeting Americans for relationships. New website coming August 25th "American-Brazil Dating Service" looking to put you on its website. Send two color photos, your age, sexual preference (i.e. straight, bisexual, or gay), hobbies, address, phone number, or email. Service fee of $1.00 U.S. dollars only required($2.00 Real). Our site will get quick results with our national advertising in U.S. Today newspaper. Email: BMore20128@aol.com - Mail: Rising Star Enterprises, Suite 16 6751 Macon Road, Columbus, GA 31907 USA - Phone (706) 569-5494 Free Personal Ad - Send bio-data, photos to: Patrick Williams, ADC #84677, Box 3200-B, Buckeye, AZ, 85326, USA. All wellcome.  Fire and Passion - Agencia de Casamento pala Brasileiros e Estrangeiros, no ramo desde 1989. Marriage Agency for Brazilians and Foreigners n business since 1989. www.firepassion.com Email: firstname.lastname@example.org -Tel. 310-450-4586  =
roving Bassi WorldMovers Brazil - Mudangas, encomendas, caixas pare o Brazil. Contato: 718472-5843 - USA -- Contato: 55-11-4473-3137 Brazil — Email: email@example.com 
2SSOS Conversational Brazilian Portuguese Method - "I tried several methods to learn BRAZILIAN PORTUGUESE, but when I started lessons with NILSON, I knew immediately that I'd found the best one. And in just a few months, I was able to communicate on a one-on-one basis." Individual, Total Immersion, Corporate Group and SemiPrivate. Phone (310) 379-0738 www.brazilianportugueselessons.com 
Learn to play Brazilian percussion. Videos for sale. Visit us on www.bridgesto.com Demo and
PORTUGUESE CLASSES - Brazilian teacher. Fast, easy, efficient and pleasant way to learn Portuguese. (949) 240-8178 
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I need share container to Brazil. 818-247-8027 Some urgency.  "sic TICKET TO BFtASIL * Bossa Nova and Brazilian Jazz group "` www.tickettobrasil.com 
Income tax, bookkeeping services. Certified tax preparer experienced and reasonable, Call Cintia Bove (415) 203-6464. Falo Portugues, Espanol. 
Psychic Readings by Dara. Angel's cards. E glish, Portuguese, Spanish Tel. (310) 838-31 9 
DI I 8P81 Wanted: Female exotic dancers 18-29 needed for 4 months in Atlanta and Columbus, Georgia USA gentlemen's clubs. No experience necessary. We provide roundtrip ticket from Sao PauloAtlanta, housing, and local transportation. Earn $4,000 or more U.S. dollars a Month. If interested, provide proof of age, 2 color swimsuit photos. Email: BMore20128@aol.com - Mail: Rising Star BFtAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
'ewspapers ' agazmes Jornais e revistas do Brasil. Recebemos join -is ,diarios e todas as principals revistas, incluin o masculinas e femininas. Tel. (954) 785-2131
'an ee s "man Bride Wanted - For a handsome, world traveled, refined Black Canadian male 43, 5' 8", 150Ibs, Ph.D and financially very secure. Prefer lady 23 34, slim, highly educated, very pretty and sophisticated. Fluency in English, international exposure and willingness to relocate to Canada appreciated. Christian most preferred. Can relocate for the right lady: Interested ladies should e:-mail with photo to: pansi1959(@,vahoo.ca or lombola(@,vahoo.com  Egyptian Lover, 58" tall, good personality, seeks Brazilian girl, only 21+, friends first. (925) 609-9023. San Francisco Bay Area only.  American male, 37, college educator, seeks Brazilian lady for friendship/relationship, Los Angeles, CA area, Daniel 310-257-8940 firstname.lastname@example.org  Elderly Black American seeks Brazilian lady 40 plus. Write Don Clifford, PO Box 512491, Los Angeles, CA 90051-0491 
"ersnna nen is m Inglesa loura, jovem 51, mudando pra Nordeste Brasil, procura amizade, email email@example.com 
'en a Rent very nice house in beautiful state of Bahia. Please see pictures and contact on site: www.casananci.neffirms.com 
INFIEPRIFIT1711717M11711111 J. Henry Phillips, immigration court interpreter www.portugueseinterpreter.com - ATA accredited Portuguese translator: Fax: (512) 834-0070. www.braziliantranslated.com 
ads nevraniFizetkm • FEIRA LIVRE RATES 500 a word Phone is one word. • DISCOUNTS: For 3 times deduct 5%, for 6 times deduct 10%, for 12 times deduct 15% • POLICY: All ads to be prepaid Ads are accepted at our discretion Your canceled check is your receipt Please, include address and phone number, which will be kept confidential • DEADLINE: The 25th of the month Late material will be held for the following month if appropriate •TO PLACE AD Send ad with check, money order or your Credit Card number (plus your name and expiration date) to BRA ZZIL P.O. Box 50536 Los Angeles, CA 90050-0536.
lifio m ads www,kanicWOM 51
Kitanda Brazil (818) 995-7422 Sugar Loaf (562) 856-1615 Supermercado Brasil (310) 837-4291
Brasil Brasil Cult. Ctr (310) 397-3667 Modern Lang. Center (310) 839-8427
• Internet 1 infant
ArtMedia (310) 826-1443
•WS MOWN "
Noronha Advogados (310) 788-0294 Edgardo Quintanilla, Esq. (818) 986-1295
Fogo e Paixao (310) 450-4586
Brazilian HeartDance &Sing (818) 759-9089
Nilson A. Santos (213) 483-3430
* Travel Riney
Livraria Plenitude (800) 532-5809
Brazil Brasileiro (972) 594-8894 Sergio & Doris Travel (281) 679-9979
Consulado do Brasil (617) 542 4000
Sylvio P. Lessa (617) 924-1882
Varig (800) GO VARIG 4 Arts Classes Julinya Vidigal Be Vince (310) 479-2070
• Inn e*-tV •Consulate •Dentist
•Ind B Products
Brasil Brasil (617) 561-6094 Food Mestizos (781) 322-4002 OIMIThiliall&ANY141ft Approach Student Ctr (617) 787-5401 Brat & Amer. Lg. Inst. (617) 787-7716
The Brazilian Monthly (617) 566 3651
• Realising aePoit
Café Brazil (617) 789-5980 lpanema (508)460-6144 Tropicana (617) 567-4422 Pampas Churrascaria (617) 661-6613
• Arts I Crafts
Ar do Brasil (310)473-6482 Bakari Art Studio (323) 857-0523 Folk Creations (310) 693-2844 Cosmo Auto Parts (323) 259-9818 Pit Stop (310) 643-6666 Banco do Brasil (213) 688-2996
Vera° Brazil Bikinis (818) 887-1776
(562) 438 3669 Chicago • Clubs Bisiaclatlois WalfilinMONOt, Brazil-Cal. Chbr of Corn.
Consulado G. do Brasil (312)464-0244
Samba 1 Dance Group (773) 486-9224
• [Pagan *11Wr Portuguese Lang. Ctr. (312) 276-6683
Dallas It Houston, TX •AO* issaMINOX Brazilian Cultural Center (713) 961-3063 Fila Brasileiro Association (817) 447-3868
Taste of Brazil Toll Free (866) 835-5556
Capoeira Golpe Bonito (713) 463-6584
Boi na Brasa (817) 329-5514 Fogo de Chao (972) 503-7300 Samba Café (713)961-7379 52
(323) 658-7402 Brazilian Soclocult C. (310) 370-0929 Centro Cultural GaScho (323) 256-6548 MILA • Samba School (310) 478-7866 Mov. Social Humanists (310) 281-6652 Sambala -Esc. de Samba (562) 438-3669
Brazilian Consulate (323) 651-2664 w hilst Gilberto Henriques (310) 371-0620 Georgia Maria Ferreira (818) 908-9199
Brazilian Nites Prod. (818) 566-1111 Lila Productions (818) 321-8984 Brash Mania • Braz. Market (310) 212-6040 Hi Brazil (310) 318-2108
Elizabeth Almeida, M.A. (310) 470-0214 Dr. Jefferson SA (213) 207-2770 Tania Haberkorn, M.A. (310) 840-5380
Brazzil (323) 255-8062
Tania Sayegh (310) 612-4838 Solon G. Pereira (562) 924-9633 natS I Offs e Bossa Nova (310) 657-5070 By Brazil (310) 787-7520 Café Brasil (310) 837-8957 Gauchos Village (818) 550-1430 Grill from Ipanema (562) 435-6238 Pampas Grill (323) 931-1928 Roda Viva Churrascaria (626) 839-9950 Sabor Brazil (310) 376-7445 Zabumba (310) 841-6525 41~1 Touchdown Freight (800) 824-4399 Key International Shipping (800) 248-3880 •Traltiffint -v3P4 Brazil Air (800) 441-8515 Brazil Tours (818) 767-1200 BrazilUSA Tours (310) 559-8000 Cheviot Hills Travel (310) 202-6264 South Winds Tr & Tours (800) 533-3423
Miami - S.Florida
* Anus Transbrasil (800) 872-3153 yang (800) 468-2744 Vasp (800) 732-8277 . • Aitifiliii400 Joel Stewart (954) 772-7600
Banco do Brasil (305) 358-3586 Banco Nacional (305) 372-0100 Banco Real (305) 358-2433
(201) 955-1137 Portugal-Brasil News (212) 228-2958 www.verdeamarelo.net (732) 906-8039
Brasilia (212) 869-9200 Brazil 2000 (212) 877-7730 Brazilian Pavillion (212) 758-8129 Cabana Carioca (212) 581-8088 Indigo Blues (212) 221-0033 S.O.B. (212) 243-4940 Tapajos River (201) 491-9196
Banespa (305) 358-9167
ABFC - As. Bras. da Flor. (407) 354-5200 Cam. Corn. Brasil- EUA (305) 579-9030 ARARA • Amazon. As. (813) 842-3161 bile& Consulado do Brasil (305) 285-6200 Heft° de SA (305) 262-8212 Luciano Garcia (954) 424-5868
All Braz. Imp. & Exp. (305) 523-8134 Brazil by Mail (954) 472-7163 Vanya's Sweets (954) 785-0087 Via Brasil (305) 866 7718
Kidoideira Productions (415) 566-0427 iffli Brazil Express (415) 749-0524 Mercado Brasil (415) 285-3520
Portuguese Lang. Serv. (415) 587 4990
• Many IMO=
Brazil Exchange (415) 346-2284 Brazil Express-Vigo (415) 749-0524 Paulo Travel (415) 863-2556
Celia Malheiros (650) 738-2434 Fogo na Roupa (510)464-5999 Voz do Brazil (415) 586-2276 • FUCtitlitl Emiliano Benevides (415) 648 2441
• Aids I Assailant
Dr. Guilherme Salgado (415) 832-6219
Barb Tour Service (201) 313-0996 Odyssea Travel Service (212) 826-3019
Katja Rego Johnson 954)255-5715
Car Mania Auto Repair (619) 223 '748
Dra Henriette Faillace (305) 935-2452 Dr. Roberto Shaffer (305) 535-1694 Dr. Neil Franzon (954) 776-1412
Clube Bras. San Diego (619) 295-0842 Sunday Night Cl. Brazil (619) 233-5979
M. C Printing (510) 268-8967
Brazil Imports (619) 234-3401
Brasilbest (415) 731-1458 Brazil Today (510) 236-3688
Florida Review (305) 374-5235
Simone Bethencourt (954) 704 1211
Boteco (954)566.3190 Brazilian Tropicana (954)781.1113 Porcao (305) 373-2777 Steak Masters (305) 567-1718
• Iran Dawns
Brazilian Wave (305) 561-3788 Discover Brazil Tou (800) 524-3666 Euroamerica (305) 358-3003 International Tours' (800) 822-1318 Luma Travel (305) 374-8635 Monark Travel (305) 374-5855 New Port Tours (305) 372-5007 Via Brasil Travel (305) 866-7580
New York /N. Jersey *kW Luso-Brazilian Books (800) 727-LUSO
Brazilian Ch. of Corn (212) 751-4691 Brazilian Corn. Bureau (212) 916-3200 Brazilian Trade Bur. (212) 224-6280
Brazilian Gen Cons. (212) 757-3080 • COMM BBJ (Br. Bus. Junction) (212) 768-1545
• feat Products
Amazonia (718) 204-1521 Coisa Nossa (201) 578-2675 Merchant Express (201) 589-5884
The Brasil ians (212) 382-1630 Brazilian Voice ,
*limy lanitiage Vigo San Diego (858)488-8303
yang (209) 475 1269
Laura Basaloco-Lapo (415) 288-6727 Man oel Fana (510) 537 3533
Nelson Auto Body (415) 255-6717 Matts Auto Body (415) 565-3560
Mbilikaellovo Bibbo (415) 421-BI BO Carmen's International . (415) 433-9441 Dalven (415) 786-6375 Neyde's (415) 681-5355
INNOLIMINISMIS Bay Area Brasilian Club (415) 334-0106 Capoeira Abada (415) 284-6196 Capoeira Institute (510) 655-8207
Café do Brasil (415) 626-6432 Café Mardi Gras (415)864.6788 Canto do Brasil (415) 626-8727 Clubs Fusetti (415)459-6079 Joao's Restaurant (408) 244-1299 Mozzarela Di Bufala (415) 346-9888 Nino's (510) 845-9303 Terra Brazilis (415)863.5177 Port. Lang. Services (415) 587-4990 Raimundo Franco (916) 443-3162 Roberto Lima (415) 215.4990 Paul • o's Travel (415) 863-2556 Rio Roma (415) 921-3353 Santini Tours (800) 769-9669 Tropical Travel (510) 655-9904 Tucanos Travel (415)454-9961
Micronet (415) 665-1994
Brazilian Consulate (415) 981-8170
Aquarela (510)548.1310 Birds of Paradise (415) 863-3651 Ginga Brasil (510)428-0698 Samba do Cora*, (415) 826-2588
Roberto Sales, DDS (510)451.8315
•billaMilifiei Eyes For Talent (650) 595-2274 F. B. C. Events (415) 334-0106 adva Productions (408) 287-9798
Transbrasil (202) 775-9180 Varig (202) 822-8277
Banco do Brasil (202) 857-0320 Banco do Est. de S. Paulo (202) 682-1151
•Clubs I Assn:law
Braz. Am. Cult. Inst. (202) 362-8334 Inst. of Brazil. Business (202) 994 5205
Embaixada do Brasil (202) 238-2700
Amazonia Grill (202) 537-0421 BRAZZIL - JANUARY 2003
CUPOM DE ASS NATURA
ilian Pacific Time6 "
0 Jona do Lingua Portugnosa Data:
Quero assinar o Brazilian Pacific Times I B ,ruses no periods de: 111 12 muses
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Envie cheque ou money order para o BraZI Han Pacific Times.
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A partiNa 3:00 ptra do Leste) JL
CD DOM I! 1110 GOV II NESS jgLJE:2J El VOW
Um programa inovador de cultura, musica, noticias, enirevistas a diversas personalidades e servicos no sul da Florida.
BRAllIL IS SEEKING SALES REPRESENTATIVES TO SELL PRINT AND BANNER ADVERTISING IN THE UNITED STATE , S FROM FLORIDA AND NEW YORK TO CALIFORNIA AND IN BETWEEN) AND OVERSEAS. RESPONSIBILITIES INCLUDE COLD CALLING, PROSPECTING, AND GENERATING NEW LEADS.
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BRAllIL IS A WELL-ESTABLISHED MAGAZINE CREATED IN 1989. THE PUBLICATION HAS SUBSCRIBERS IN EVERY STATE OF THE US AND CAN BE FOUND IN VIRTUALLY EVERY PUBLIC AND COLLEGE LIBRARY IN THE US THANKS TO A PARTNERSHIP WITH THE ETHNIC NEWSWATCH CD-ROM. COMPENSATION IS COMPETITIVE AND BASED IN EXCELLENT COMMISSION. ITO APPLY PLEASE CONTACT US AT BRAllIL@BRAllIL.COM FAX TO 323-257-3487 I OR MAIL TO PO BOX 50536, LOS ANGELES CA 90050. YOU CAN ALSO CALL 323-255-8062. I
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8-10pm Brazilian Drum Class 8-10pm Brazilian Dance Class 9pm-lam Live Brazilian Pop Spin-lam Samba Show Or Muse 3-6pm Bossa Nova
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Getting to Know You Brazil is not a place for beginners or the unprepared. Americans think that globalization means doing things "the American way", but it's more a two-way learning process. Latin America is an American creation for the sake of convenience. KIRSTIN ELAINE MYERS
According to the March 8, 2002 edition of the Financial Times, "its size and strong growth prospects have made Brazil something of an obligatory consumer market for many international companies" and currency devaluation has made the country attractive as a basis for exports of many of these same firms. Analysts make headline-grabbing statements about the enormous opportunities for Foreign Direct Investment in many sectors such as telecom, power and banking, in spite of the current global downturn and political uncertainty caused by the election of Luiz Inacia Lula Silva as the new president. For those of us who have known and worked with the country for a while, however, the hype is all rather amusing... We've been trying to get our companies and colleagues to pay more attention to Brazil for years! The situation has now reached a point where you ignore Brazil at your own peril. At the same time, stumbling in the Brazilian market by usually successful companies such as AOL, Wal-Mart, Kentucky Fried Chicken and Pizza Hut, demonstrate that it is not enough to make Brazil a priority. It is also essential to know what you want to achieve there, and be willing to do what is necessary. Brazil is not a place for beginners or the unprepared. The more one knows about the place, the more one realizes how
much there is still to be learned. Even Brazilians don't totally understand how things work in their own country, but that doesn't keep them from being successful. They just keep on learning and adapting, even making up solutions as they go. Hence the popularity of such terms as jeitinho, roughly translated as a way of winging it, andjogodecintura, which refers to the adjustment one makes to the movement of one's waist, and means flexibility. These are two key ingredients for being successful in Brazil. Americans have the tendency to think that globalization means doing things "the American way", and that the rest of the world needs to learn from the United States. In this new world of Internet speed, you would think the removal of geographical barriers would be a twoway learning process. However, I still hear very senior U.S. executives comment that American companies don't need to globalize—they just have to enter the other markets... Like other nations, Brazil is in the midst of a big push to get its business professionals to learn English and get MBAs in American and European universities. Brazilian business magazines like Exame and Voce S.A. constantly feature articles on career development, which include globalization and higher learning. This new educational elite however, is not staying abroad once their degrees are earned and their overseas experience is obtained. Increasingly they are returning to Brazil, to start companies or join the most successful Brazilian corporations. This reality puts unprepared American companies at a disadvantage. In case you still doubt that globalization should be a twoway process, consider some Brazilian success stories. Brazilian banks, for example, had to resort to various jeitinhos during the years of astronomical inflation, involving the leveraging of technology and computerization. This experience enabled them to survive and even thrive during the inflationary years, and resulted in the evolution of banks into technology companies. Now they use their know-how to cut their own costs and stay ahead
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in the current hyper-competitive Brazi ian financial market. But they are al making waves in the high-tech worl recently offering free Internet access all their customers and even prepari for spin-offs of their technologies in pre-IPO ventures. A world-class Brazilian company the huge publisher Abril. They are partner in UOL, the most-visited no English language portal in the worl and the world's most visited Portugue language portal. Another Abril ventu is the musical website Usina do So which receives more than a million hi monthly. Then there is Embraer, the fou largest aircraft manufacturer in the worl with over 40 percent of the global m ket for commuter jets. And steel beh moth Gerdau belongs on the list—it r cently bought Ameristeel and joined t e ranks of the world's top steel produce Gerdau already owned steel mills in oth parts of the world, including two Canada. To outsiders, Brazil remains enigma—an unknown, exciting and sc place. Americans in particular build th image ofthe country based on little sol knowledge, since Brazil is seldom co ered in the mainstream media. When is, the issues are usually larger than Ii street kids murdering or being murder an economy on the edge of crisis, c rupt politicians stealing millions, soc players winning world championshi
supermodels making splashes or having Mick Jagger's baby, or the over-mentioned Carnaval celebrations.
Making Money I began working with the Brazilian market ten years ago. At that time, I was able to take advantage of everyone's generally low expectations and lack of knowledge about Brazil to eventually turn that market into a cash cow for my company. I first took care of the A and B countries (Europe and Asia) from the VP of International's list of country priorities. Getting those tasks done as quickly as possible left me time to devote afternoons and weekends to my passion from the C list—Brazil and other Latin American countries, as well as the poorer Asian nations. I was able to find good partners in Sao Paulo, and together we developed the market to the extent that the country went from being on the C list to the A list for my company. Brazil turned out to be a goldmine. The reasons for that: 1) A huge and hungry market for the imaging solution we were offering; 2) Sophisticated and aggressive Brazilian business partners who knew the way around bureaucratic and logistical obstacles of their system; 3) My sheer passion and need to prove my point to my boss—this enabled me to get up to speed quickly on the ABCs ofhow to do business in Brazil and persevere when I made the inevitable and frequent mistakes. My learning curve was not an issue, because the country was not high-profile for my company at the time and they had few expectations. Times have changed however, and a company can no longer afford such a deep learning curve. Now, an effective Brazilian strategy consists of two key components: the right person in charge of Brazilian operations from the American side, and the Brazilian partner with whom to work based in Brazil. And the best possible person to drive your Brazilian business is not necessarily someone in a senior position back at head office, without international experience and foreign language skills.. Someone with "Latin Ameri-
can" experience and fluent in Spanish but not Portuguese may not be right either. The latter is preferable to the former, but if Brazil is a top priority, why settle for either? This may come as a surprise to many, but Brazil is not part of the rest of Latin America. You can argue this with me all night long over beers at Bar des Arts in Sao Paulo, but I will win the argument as soon as you ask any Brazilian at the bar what he or she thinks. Fernando Espuelas' vision and best intentions notwithstanding, you cannot fit a round peg into a square hole. Latin America is an American creation for the sake of convenience in dealing with our southern neighbors. One example to prove this point is the fact that you cannot talk about sex in a Mexican office and be professional, and you should talk about it with your boss and coworkers to be considered so in Sao Paulo. You could say Brazilians are oversexed or the Mexicans repressed, but this value judgment does not help to do business more successfully in either country. The cultures are different, and it is necessary to act differently in each one. Brazilian Differences Mexicans, Brazilians and Argentines may appear to be similar to Americans, and therefore part of a region because they are generally more emotional when doing business than Americans are, and they are typically in less of a hurry. Meetings take longer in those countries because they don't usually start on time, and because participants spend a lot of time in conversations unrelated to the business at hand, to build the relationship. But overemphasizing these generalities leads to oversimplification, and the result is the wrong business approach. AOL's decision to enter Brazil with a Venezuelan partner is areal-life example ofsuch a mistake. The final reason to not treat Brazil as part of Latin America is that this irritates many Brazilians. Another revelation to some is the fact that Brazilians speak Portuguese. Give yourself 10 extra bonus points if you already knew that, and don't feel bad if you didn't. I am amazed at how many business acquaintances ask me to bring back Spanish magazines or Spanish music when I go to Brazil on busi-
ness. I have to politely tell them that I will be happy to do so, even though such items will not be easy to find in Sao Paulo. Spanish is as much a foreign language to Brazilians as English is. If you doubt me on this one, go ahead and ask a Brazilian again... Yes, Brazilians and people from other Latin American countries can understand one another, but the grammar pronunciation and even vocabulary are totally different. Furthermore. Portuguese as spoken by Brazilians is different than that spoken in Portugal and reflects the culture and way ofthinking ofthe people. To really understand how Brazilians think about and see the world, a knowledge of their brand of Portuguese is essential. Portuguese also happens to be a much better language in which to conduct business in Brazil, where relationships are the most important consideration, even over product or company with which one is associated. Portuguese is a much more romantic, softer and poetic language, whereas English is cold and objective and to the point. Brazilians realize that English is the international language ofbusiness and if you insist, they will conduct meetings in it. However, ifyou want to be as successful as possible, try to speak to them in Portuguese. It shows a true desire to understand the local culture and do business with them. Another benefit is that if you happen to say the wrong thing and accidentally embarrass or offend the other person, you can pretend you didn't mean it—by using different voice tones and inflections, anything in Portuguese can be turned into a joke: This by the way, is an example of jogo de cintura. Portuguese is also a necessary requirement for any Brazil strategy because, again, the mainstream international business media coverage of Brazil is superficial and insufficient. Even some of the best agencies, like Reuters and Dow Jones, don't cover stories in the amount or depth necessary to provide a handle on this market. I conducted a search on Business Week's website with the keyword "Brazil", and was appalled to receive a very short list of articles. One of them, titled "Brazil's Deepening Crisis", started with "In a one-room plaster and wood home in a slum in Recife..." How useful is that for knowing Brazil? Looking for better English-language sources is likely to
yield similar results, so why not have your Brazil person reading Brazilian publications and websites? Agencia Estado, Gazeta Mercantil, Exame, Isto Dinheiro, Carta Capital, etc.? More than Getting by Yes, it's possible to get by in English or Spanish in Brazil but is just getting by what your company intends? If so, why bother in this complicated market at all? The people who said about New York that "if you can make it there you can make it anywhere", had obviously never been to Sao Paulo! In addition to speaking Portuguese, the person in charge of your Brazilian strategy needs to have a solid track record in that market. This will automatically mean that they are well-versed in the nuances of this sophisticated culture, have a strong network of contacts, and these assets are directly related to the credibility your person will have with potential partners and clients. They need to be able to call on the CEO of any corporation or media organization. They need to be able to socialize with the Brazilian crème de la creme after hours. Happy Hours in Sao Paulo by the way, start around 8:00 pm and birthday parties for coworkers are often held from 11:00 pm to the wee hours of the morning on a weeknight. Ifyou aren't used to this and aren't there, you are not going to be seen as a team player and will be less effective. Brazilians will still show up for work on time, too, after being out all night and only getting 2 or 3 hours of sleep. Some big Gringo faux pas that an experienced Brazil hand won't commit include being too serious and formal at the office and too informal at Happy Hours. Brazilians infrequently wear suits and ties, and women will often use opentoed shoes without stockings at the office. However, they seldom use jeans or casual clothes on social occasions or when going out after work. I cringed at the sight ofsome very high-level American executives who wore button-up shirts to the office but then stopped by Happy Hour after working out at the gym— sweatsuit, tennis shoes and all. Similarly, many expats in Sao Paulo don't take the time to notice that Brazilians don't like to eat food with their fingers. French Fries and pizzas are eaten with forks and the proper way to eat a
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sandwich is with a napkin or paper wrapped around the outside. These errors may not be fatal but it definitely does not help one to appear sophisticated or on the inside. More serious mistakes come from having an inexperienced person dealing with Brazilian senior executives. Brazilians, as a rule, are more accessible and it is much easier to get a first meeting on Avenida Paulista than on Wall Street. Even a more junior person from a multinational company will sometimes get a meeting, be served the typical espresso and provided with the opportunity to make their pitch. However, this ease of access can be misinterpreted as success and lead ironically to eventual failure. If the inexperienced person driving your Brazilian strategy does not take these meetings seriously enough, he could show up unprepared and in an unprofessional manner. For example,_ Brazilians are not usually on time, so he may decide to show up 10 minutes late, figuring he is always kept waiting for that long in other meetings. In fact, it is fashionable to arrive late if you are a potential client or the pursued party. However, it can be considered disrespectful or rude if done by someone on the sell-side. Especially if the Brazilian executive was educated in a foreign country that is more punctual. The rule then is to show up on time, but be prepared to wait. Make your meetings longer. In New York City, you are lucky to be given a meeting. Even so, ifyou don't start to show value within 10 minutes, the other party may start looking at his watch or even show you the door. In sao Paulo, no one would be so rude. However, their time is equally valuable, and if you don't make your point quickly and effectively, you will probably not have a second chance. In fact, first impressions are even more important in Brazil, and appearance is reality due to the more emotional nature of Brazilian society. There is an expression in Portuguese: "queimar o filme"(to burn the film), which is similar to the American expression "to burn bridges". However, usually the American version is the result of something that has built up over time and takes longer. Queimar of/me can happen on the first visit and can take only seconds. It is also much more serious because Sao Paulo, a city of 20 million, is actually a
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small town. The elite are such a fractio and they are in a very small world. T benefit is that networking and word if mouth can be much more powerful ther, for that reason. So if you behave you self your contacts multiply like rabbi s and you can know "everyone" relative quickly. The drawback is that ifyou lo e credibility or fail to gain it once, t e effect is exponentially greater. For that reason, you only want t e person with the right profile to be mee ing and dealing with Brazilian seni r executives. Just having a good title a d the mandate from your company is n t enough and can in fact backfire, as it s taken as an insult. Having someone wi h the right experience and contacts in Br zil means instant credibility and reco nition for your company. Rice and Beans, Beans and Ric If your Brazil strategist does not have the respect of the business community in Brazil, it may often take a long time to discover the fact. Brazilians are very polite and don't want to cause hurt feelings, partly to avoid that queimar o flume when they don't know when and where a person will surface again. Therefore, they may use a techniq e known as "enrolar", where the Brazil i n executive continues to agree to certa n proposals or events without ever signi g anything in writing. Frustrated and me perienced Americans who receive th s treatment rant and rave about the unreliable and dishonest Brazilians. Actual y it is a reflection of the American's o n inability to get a straight answer becau e he or she is not being taken seriously. Other cultural nuances come wi h experience, and don't necessarily tran late to the bottom line but are mot valuable in understanding a market. F r example, the first time I went to Braz 1, I stayed at the home of a very midd e class family. For two weeks we had ri e and beans every day and I got quick y disenchanted. I assumed this diet w due to economic circumstances as o -
posed to an option. After all, who would eat the same thing every day if given the choice? The following week, I was on a crosscountry trip by car through the Brazilian southwest with a very wealthy client and his kids. I was so relieved, sure that I finally would get to try some new Brazilian foods other than rice and beans. Dinnertime had arrived and he asked his three children what kind of food they wanted. I was expecting them to give the Brazilian kid's version of American kid favorites like pizza, spaghetti, or hamburgers. Not what I would choose, but better than rice and beans. When the three of them, at the top of their lungs said "daddy, take us out for rice and beans!", my jaw dropped in amazement. Luckily, we went to a restaurant that had lots of difference selections and I got something else. But I had
learned something that I was to understand more deeply as the years went by. Brazilian culture is much more homogenous in many ways than is the case in America. Language and food are two of their unifiers. Transposing this to the business world, if a company is in the food business and wants to enter Brazil, this kind of deep cultural understanding is critical. Pizza Hut barely scraped by in Brazil for some time, and even now would not be considered a major success in that market. Perhaps one reason is they didn't know that Brazilians believe the best pizza in the world is available in sao Paulo's many pizzerias. Brazilian society includes a large Italian contingent, and they have developed pizza to the Brazilian palate while still keeping it closer to the original than you find in the
American marketplace. It is not true however that Brazilians are not open to foreign foods. One example of a Brazilian success story is the Arab fast-food chain Habib's. Founder and CEO Alberto Saraiva was born in Portugal and is not of Arab descent. Saraiva originally owned a bakery and had an Arab, employee who taught him how to make Arab food. The rest is historyâ€”Habib's has been so successful that Saraiva is now taking the chain to Mexico City and Los Angeles. For all these reasons, having the right person in charge is essential to any Brazilian strategy. Perhaps the most important reason, however, is related to the second component: the choice of the right partner. First and foremost, relationships are the foundation in the Brazilian business world. Individuals enter and leave companies taking their entire network ofpartners and clients with them. Sales executives will do a lot more schmoozing and spontaneous gift-giving to their prospects and clients that) Americans would. Goodwill Building The time to do this is not when closing a deal, as that smacks of bribery and is offensive. A Brazilian will start doing personal favors from early on in the sales cycle, purely for the sake of creating goodwill and strengthening the relationship. He knows that whether or not he closes that deal, he can add the person to his personal rolodex. Conversely, Brazilians are apt to buy products or services as a personal favor to help a sales exec in need of meeting a monthly or quarterly goal, but only if the relationship has already been cultivated. The same applies when choosing a partner. Some Americans might try to look for partners whose companies offer complementary products or services, and who have no ability to compete directly against them in Brazil. Or from companies with recognized names back in the U.S.. However, in any country, you are known by the company you keep and nowhere is this more important than in Brazil. The partnership selection process must begin with the individual. He or she should of course be bilingual and have international experience, preferably in your area of expertise.
However, more important is a solid track record in their own market, Brazil, and with their own people. Look for someone with a solid network and respect in their market niche, whatever that may be. Brazilians have been through so much economic and political turbulence that flexibility is built into their psyche. A partner can easily learn a new technology or business model. Much harder is to find someone who is a trustworthy visionary, experienced and aggressive. One type of partner and partnership to avoid at all costs is the traditional local distributor/representative model. A company considering this option is sending a message to all that they have no intention to localize or customize the product or service to the Brazilian market. Instead they are saying "if it's good enough for us it is good enough for you:.. we are going to sell you what we've got." This may seem like obvious advice but it is astonishing to note how many companies are currently considering this type of strategy for Brazil. In addition to portraying an arrogant disregard for local market tastes, a company with the distributorship model is also implying a lack of respect for the Brazilian expertise. The distributor model is usually one in which the Brazilian takes a subordinate position akin to that of an employee ofthe head corporation. Control remains at headquarters and the Brazilian's opinion is secondary. If you don't show respect for your Brazilian partner and engage them in a true partnership, why should any Brazilian company want to do business with them either? Or if they do want to do business with him for personal ties or other reasons, the Brazilian client company will begin to resent you for not giving your partner more prestige and autonomy in their own country. In the case of Kentucky Fried Chicken, its Brazilian product was never of the same high quality as in the U.S., which means head office did not have
the right partner in place in Brazil to uphold the standards. Evidently, the Brazilian partner was too weak or too incompetent to tell the U.S. that Brazilian customers are more demanding than was assumed. The choice of partner is a doubleedged sword because ideally the right person should be intelligent, aggressive, global, a visionary. He or she has to continually teach you about Brazil and how to be successful there. But that means he is also a threat, because he can and may be even better than you are. Theoretically, a truly effective Brazilian partner would be capable of co-opting your intellectual capital and then cutting you out of the picture. To prevent this from happening, you do not, as an alternative, settle for a weak partner that you can dominate. Instead, you cultivate and deepen your relationship with this powerhouse so that you work from a position of mutual respect and trust. If you aren't worthy of a partner in that league, he or she won't be interested in you anyway, and may even want to work with your competitor. But if you are, get that top person on your side before someone else does. Of course, it goes without saying that any prudent company will also put legal safeguards in place to protect it from partnerships that go astray for any reason. In conclusion, entering the Brazilian market is not an option for many companies. Once the decision has been made however, the market merits the best investment of time, energy and resources in choosing talented and experienced individuals to drive the business from both countries. As a final check to see if you have paid attention to this article and thought carefully about these issues, try to answer the following question to yourself right now: "Why would Kentucky Fried Chicken's 'finger lickin' good' slogan definitely not work in Brazil?" Kirstin Elaine Myers, the author, is the founder of GloBond International Inc, a global network of executives. She has lived and worked in Sao Paulo and resides now in Gloucester, Massachusetts. Myers speaks five languages and is an honors graduate in Political Science from the University of Kansas. Email her at kirstinglobond.com.br
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