Opinion, by Michael Royster
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – The Curmudgeon has been off line for a month now, but he’s back. Sad to say, nothing seems to have changed much in the past month. Or at least, change for the better is nowhere to be seen.
The economy continues to shrink, inflation and unemployment continue to rise, Dilma dithers and the opposition sits smugly on the sidelines applauding the worsening state of the union. The only good news is that the police and public ministry continue to investigate Petrobras and other scandals.
The entire country seems engulfed in the latest efforts of the President of the country and the President of the Chamber of Deputies to maintain their current positions and avoid impeachment. Government has stopped governing, Congress has stopped legislating, every possible decision is analyzed as to how it may affect the “fora Dilma!” and the “fora Cunha!” movements proliferating around Brazil.
TCU (the Congressional Audit Court) has received the administration’s defense of the “pedalada” mechanism used to mask the true state of Brazil’s finances during the 2014 election campaign, but has not taken any decision yet. No one knows when it will do anything at all, it seems paralyzed.
TSE (the electoral tribunal) has just begun work on the suit that seeks to overturn the 2014 elections. The Presiding Judge has appointed as “rapporteur” one of his colleagues who voted against the TSE even hearing the case, so we can expect no action there either.
No legislation, no proposals, no adjudication. The government isn’t governing and the legislature isn’t legislating and the judiciary isn’t judging.
That’s a recipe for an economic disaster, and there are too many cooks in Brasília slavishly following that recipe.
The Curmudgeon will emit more “Presidential” Smidgens opportunely.