| How the sausage is made|
“”I never imagined that I'd be president. No one gave us victory, but I think it was God's will. He saved my life first, then he gave me that mandate. … I believe that God is Brazilian.
Jair Messias Bolsonaro (1955–) is a morally bankrupt Brazilian nut job politician worshipped by the Brazilian right. A former congressman and the current president of Brazil, Bolsonaro is considered one of the most
evil right-wing politicians on the planet within the 21st century. He longs for the good old days of military dictatorship and supports "Christian" and family values. A former member of the so-called "Social Liberal Party", a far-right party that is part of the informally known "Bullets, Beef and Bible Caucus" within the Brazilian Congress, he has been labeled the "tropical Trump", and has been compared to other authoritarian statesmen such as Philippines' Rodrigo Duterte and Egypt's Abdel Fattah el-Sisi. Still he leans even further right than Trump in certain aspects. His son Eduardo Bolsonaro is also a congress member with similarly cuddly politics and was being touted to become Brazil's ambassador in the USA, but that failed. In other words, he's the perfect kakistocrat. Of all the politicians accused of being "Trump clones" he is definitely one of the more successful/dangerous.
Bolsonaro is one of the main opponents of socialism, Communism, leftism, Marxism, Bolivarianism, the gay agenda, etc. and also the current archenemy of common sense, common decency and the lungs of the planet. And THE archenemy of Brazil, the country and its people.
- 1 Controversies
- 2 Presidential proposals
- 3 "Patriotism"
- 4 Famous quotes and context
- 5 Environmental Supervillain
- 6 COVID-19 response
- 7 Family and Militias
- 8 Olavo de Carvalho
- 9 Preparing for a Coup
- 10 "No reason for impeachment"
- 11 External links
- 12 Notes
- 13 References
Jair Bolsonaro is well known for his, putting it mildly, controversial stands on several topics, such as minorities, LGBT population and crime. Besides being an admirer of the Brazilian military regime, in 1993 he openly supported Peruvian dictator Alberto Fujimori, who has been charged with several crimes ranging from corruption to supporting forced sterilization programs and even genocide. Later, in 1999, he openly supported the assassination of several people, including the then Brazilian president, Fernando Henrique Cardoso. This is ironic given that decades later he would also be targeted by an assassin, unsuccessfully. 
Among his presidential proposals are closing unnecessary ministries (such as the Ministry of Finance, which keeps the government in control of the economy, the Ministry of Defense, which keep the military subordinate to politics, and folding the Ministry of the Environment into the Ministry of Agriculture, in order to put an end to its "fines industry"), supporting free markets and entrepreneurship, opposing an alleged "biased political education in public schools" (where teachers, supposedly, indoctrinate children into socialism, as he and many of his supporters on the right claim), and relaxing Brazilian strict gun laws. He is strongly in favor of law-and-order policies and supports lowering the age of criminal responsibility and further increase the prison population of Brazil, already the 4th-largest in the world.
Bolsonaro claims to be a patriot, however, every act of his, when it comes to actually ensuring Brazil has international credibility, goes in the opposite direction. Under his government, Petrobras, the country's state oil company, is having all its subsidiaries sold and the company itself might end up privatized as well. To get an idea of how harmful that is for a country's sovereignty, just think about this:
- The government controls, indirectly, a vast quantity of crude oil;
- Said crude oil is essential to keep the country running;
- Having a strategic resource under control of the government means that the country has a strong position when dealing with other countries (and companies);
- Having refineries as well means that the crude oil will become useful products, without external dependence;
Now, just imagine that Exxon or British Petrol decided that, you know what, they should sell everything they have to someone from another country. Or that the USA government decided that the best way for its oil reserves to be explored would be by financing another country's oil company to come. This is what's happening to Petrobras. Its refineries are being sold, its transport lines are being sold, these two under the reason that the company should focus on finding and extracting crude oil, nothing more. Nothing says patriotism like telling your own country's companies that they suck.
Fun fact, Petrobras became an increasingly lucrative company during the years of Lula da Silva as president and had some rough years, like all other oil companies in the second half of the 2010s. However, because there is this phenomenon named Sindrome de Vira Lata (Mutt Syndrome, in a rough translation, which is basically the common notion among Brazilians that anything that's Brazilian sucks), everyone took the opportunity to blame the Dilma Rousseff government, its policies regarding the company and, of course, rampant corruption in the company. The fact that crude oil prices were at a low was completely ignored. It would have had a net profit of around US$2.9 billion in 2017 if not for some shady out of court deals, due to Lava Jato. But, since some people think "right now" is much more important than any other time in the future, sovereignty can take a hike!
And there is also the case of him giving the green light for Boeing to buy Embraer. Again, the best way to look into this is making a thought experiment: how would the US citizens react if their government decided to sell Boeing to the Chinese or Russians. You know, one of the companies full of industrial and military secrets being bought by someone else. To add even more salt to the patriotic wound, Embraer is the sole loser of the deal, giving its full portfolio of planes and technology while receiving pretty much nothing in exchange. Oh, and the Brazilian Air Force did a technical statement noticing that, yeah, the whole deal was meant to save Boeing and that, unlike the government said, selling Embraer was not the "only way" to save it.. It should be telling that this statement was leaked to a site that is infamous for being extremely pro-Bolsonaro.
Famous quotes and context
Bolsonaro became known in Brazil and internationally chiefly because of his controversial statements on a number of subjects. However, if everything he has declared since the 1980s is taken into consideration, several contradictions can be observed. Although he is typically viewed as conservative or far-right, he has also expressed admiration for the communist Hugo Chavez, pro-choice views, support for topless rights, among other things.
“”A teenager can rape and kill 200 people and he is still not treated like a criminal in Brazil. Most minors know that if they are going to commit a robbery, it is better to kill the victim as there is less chance of being caught, and if they are, the punishment will be the same.
|—Bolsonaro advocating for lowering the age of criminal responsibility.|
“”I will not rape you because you do not deserve it.
|—Bolsonaro to Maria do Rosário|
In 2003, Brazilian teenagers Liana Friedenbach and Felipe Caffé were brutally murdered by five assaulters, one of which was 16 years old. This sparked a debate over a possible reduction of the age of criminal responsibility, as in Brazil nobody under 18 is considered fully responsible for even the most serious crimes. While Bolsonaro supported such reduction to 16 years old, fellow congress member and human rights advocate Maria do Rosário was against it. In an incendiary argument over the case, Rosário called Bolsonaro a rapist and he replied: "I will not rape you because you do not deserve it".
Eleven years later in 2014, Bolsonaro and Rosário had another argument (this time about the military dictatorship in Brazil) in which he repeated his words. This brought wide media attention and, in one of his interviews about the case, Bolsonaro explained: "It was a reflexive response. A word said to her by me over the rape accusation". In another, he clarified what he originally meant: "She doesn't deserve it because she is too bad, too ugly. She is not my type. I would never rape her."
In May 2021, the Brazilian police conducted a raid in a poor neigborhood in the city of Rio de Janeiro. With a death toll of 28, it's the most lethal police operation in the history of the city. Bolsonaro nonetheless congratulated the raid, also claiming that "By treating as victims the drug dealers that steal, kill and destroy families, the media and the Left equate them with the common, honest citizen, who respects the laws and his neighbor." A few days early, his vice-president Hamilton Mourão had already congratulated the police for the deaths.
“”I have five children. Four are men. The last time I did it weakly and the result was a woman.
“”No, I'm not against it. As long as it isn't with someone else's wife. When everyone's wives are doing it, mine will be allowed too. Microkinis used to be a scandal but today they are normal. Everything is evolution.
|—Bolsonaro about legalizing toplessness.|
“”It must be a decision of the couple.
|—About abortion in 1999, but he holds the opposite view nowadays.|
Despite his past and present sexist comments, Bolsonaro voted in 2006 for the Maria da Penha Law (a law targeting domestic violence against women) and in 2015 for the inclusion of femicide in the Penal Code of Brazil. As President in 2019, he sanctioned measures that made Maria da Penha Law even more strict.
Dictatorship and communism
As a former army captain, Bolsonaro openly admires the anti-communist military regime that ruled the country between 1964 and 1985, which practiced censorship and torture.
“”I support a dictatorship. We will never resolve serious national problems with this irresponsible democracy.
|—Bolsonaro in 1993.|
“”In honor of Colonel Carlos Alberto Brilhante Ustra, the dread of Dilma Rousseff.
|—Jair Bolsonaro dedicated his vote in 2016 for the impeachment of President Dilma Rousseff of the corrupt PT to the deceased Colonel Brilhante Ustra, a former soldier convicted of torture and kidnapping during the military dictatorship who was in charge of DOI-CODI, a facility where she was held imprisoned as an anti-government guerrilla fighter. As several others, this statement was reprehended by several politicians and other society sectors. In response, left-wing deputy Jean Wyllys spat at Bolsonaro in the parliament chamber.|
“”He is a hope for Latin America. I very much wish that this philosophy comes to Brazil. I find him unique. I plan to go to Venezuela and try to meet him. [...] He is not anti-communist and neither am I. In fact, there is nothing closer to communism than the military environment. I don't even know who is a communist nowadays.
|—About Hugo Chavez, 1999.|
He said that he would "be incapable of loving a homosexual son" and would "rather let his child die in an accident than be gay" according to a 2011 Playboy interview. He also claimed that "We Brazilians don't like homosexuals."
“”I don’t run the risk of having children who are gay or date black women because my children were very well raised.
In 2006, Bolsonaro proposed a law that would require 50% of seats in congress to be occupied "by the black and brown population". This, however, was an attempt to ironize racial quotas.
“”Have you ever seen a Japanese person begging? They are a race with self-respect!
“”I do not know how the commanders are positioning themselves, but, should they ever reduce the effectiveness (of the Army), there are going to be fewer people to oppose the criminals of MST (Brazilian left-wing movement that supports reforms related to agrarian properties), Haitians, Senegalese, Bolivians and all the scum of the world that, now, the Syrians are coming too. The scum of the world is coming to Brazil as if we did not already have enough problems to solve.
Bolsonaro has also had some unsavory views on his country's indigenous people, somehow even finding a way to be xenophobic to them in their own country.
“”The Indians do not speak our language, they do not have money, they do not have culture. They are native peoples. How did they manage to get 13% of the national territory?
“”The Indians are evolving, more and more they are human beings like us.
“”Only vegans are complaining about the environment. Once we run out of commodities, what are going to do? Turn vegan? Live off the environment?
|—Jair Bolsonaro, destroying and degrading commodities.|
Bolsonaro does not hide his contempt for the notion of ecological reserves. He was fined for illegally fishing in 2012, but it eventually expired in December 2018. After he took over the presidency, the auditor responsible for fining him was fired. He also claimed that, once president, the indigenous populations wouldn't get "one more centimeter of land" from him; The fact that these lands are rich with valuable minerals like gold and copper might have something to do with him despising the indigenous population of Brazil, calling them "slaves kept in pre-historical conditions by NGOs".
The risk of his election sparked worry around the world, because he was promising to open the lands within the Amazon rainforest for exploration. The man he named for the Environment Ministry, Ricardo Salles, is a climate change denier who was condemned for illegally editing ecological reserve maps to the benefit of mining companies as a state Environment Secretary in São Paulo, to the point of slashing the funding for fighting climate change by 96% and also stated that the Brumadinho tragedy, where a dam containing mining scum broke, could've been avoided if there were less "auditing bureaucracy" in place. Currently, the duo is doing their very best to make the risk of turning half the rainforest becoming an strip naked wasteland of abandoned mines a reality. And, because he's such a patriot, he wants other countries' mining companies extracting all the goods. On ecological reserves where there are no minerals to be extracted, like the bay of Angra, he wants to turn them into Cancúns.
When Angela Merkel told the German parliament that she would do everything in her power to stop Brazil's deforestation efforts, Bolsonaro replied, during the G20 summit in Japan, that "[Germany] uses a lot of fossil fuels. We don't. They have a lot to learn from us". That was reassuring.
Perhaps the most alarming thing Bolsonaro actually managed to do thus far (besides starving funding for fighting climate change) was fire the director of the INPE (Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas Espacias, or National Institute of Space Research), Ricardo Galvão. The reason? The institute published the numbers of the deforestation for the first six months of 2019, and it showed an increase of 88% comparing the month of June 2018 to June 2019, plus 278% for July 2018-19. Once Bolsonaro ordered the Institute to retract (after accusing them of data tampering, working for NGOs and claiming the instruments were unreliable), the director stood his ground and also openly complained about how his boss behaved like a "14 year old, not a president". Although Bolsonaro complained that publishing those numbers was "bad for the country", he's either too stupid, ignorant or arrogant (possibly all three and more) to realize how much his own actions are bad for the country's image.
And it only gets worse
As more data came in pointing that  the fires raging around the rainforest have increased almost 300% compared to the previous year, Bolsonaro kept denying and blaming everyone but the actual culprits, big farmers, who organized a "fire day" via a WhatsApp group, for it:
“”You want some proof that the NGOs are burning the amazon? I'll give you proof, that will get completely distorted by the press tomorrow. Some of the images, someone in a car, is burning the highway from the side. The fire of the exact same height. You can notice, the fire of the same height, one kilometer, typical of fires started how? Someone in a bicycle or motorcycle, a burning pole, dropping that in the side of the road.
|—Bolsonaro, the master of PIDOOMA.|
“”The forest isn't on fire like people are saying. They're happening where people are deforesting.
|—Bolsonaro, trying to imply the fires are happening in already devastated areas and failing miserably.|
Emmanuel Macron, France's president, was humiliated time and time again by Bolsonaro and even his Education Minister, Abraham Weintraub. When Macron accepted, with the rest of the G7, to negotiate and send some funds to help fight the fires (despite his absolute indignation with the Brazilian treatment), the donkey kicked again. First, accusing the group of seeing the Amazon as a no-man's land and accusing Macron specifically of "throwing gratuitous attacks at the Amazon". The next day, Bolsonaro went back and considered getting the help, but he insisted that Macron was wrong: "[...]Firstly, mister Macron must retract the insults he directed at me. He called me a liar. Then, the information I received, is that our sovereignty is open in the Amazon."
In case of oil spill
Starting August 30, spilled oil started to show up on beaches of the northeastern coast. After the whole month of September doing nothing and pretending nothing was happening, despite more oil showing up on even more beaches, the very first action that came from the government was to claim it was Venezuelan oil. Really. When that claim caused facepalms all over the world and was very easily proven to be false, Bolsonaro doubled down on stupidity: Coincidence or not, we have an auction. I ask myself, we have to be very responsible in what we say. Could it be, you don't need to answer, a criminal action to jeopardize the auction? The question is in the air."
Unlike the government, the people living near the affected areas decided to do something that wasn't pointing fingers at those obviously not involved. This is important: it is within the president's powers to order the navy to take immediate action in case of such disaster. Without his express order, they don't do anything. Also, the Environment Ministry has a contingency plan to minimize damages, but took 41 days since the first spill to put it into action.
Fun fact: The Bolsonaro government dismantled several federal-civil councils and committees back in April, including two that were responsible for taking quick action in the face of oil spills. At the time, Bolsonaro was happy that he was getting rid of "entities filled with ideology [...] that were purposefully hindering development and not worrying about the real necessities of the people". However, because reality, common sense and good behavior are the polar opposite of Bolsonaro, the man continues to blame (without an atom of evidence) his own enemies as responsible for the oil: Greenpeace, Foro de Sao Paulo, Dilma Rousseff, PT (Worker's Party), Nicolas Maduro, NGOs, other left parties. Given his track record, when the actual reason of the spill becomes clear, it's very probable he'll bark "VENEZUELAN COMMUNIST CONSPIRACY".
In November 2019, he and his government have once again become the subject of ridicule, as the Federal Secretary of Fisheries stated in a Facebook livestream that "fish are smart, when they see an oil spot, they flee", and that, therefore, it was safe to eat fish from contaminated areas, despite multiple samples of seafood being found with dangerous levels of chemical contamination. This is the same Secretary of Fisheries whose family was fined a dozen times for illegal fishing practices, and the officers responsible for the fines were fired after Bolsonaro's election. Anyone else seeing some kind of pattern here?
Record fires of 2020
As if 2020 wasn't a bad enough year on its own due to COVID-19, the Brazilian states of Mato Grosso and Mato Grosso do Sul registered record fires and deforestation, partly due to the long drought, partly due to human greed and stupidity, partly due to the government's purposeful inaction. To make matters worse, the Amazon also registered another increase in deforestation, compared to 2019, which was already record breaking. Bolsonaro, being Bolsonaro, claimed that the media was overblowing the whole thing, both in regards to the Amazon fires and the Pantanal fires and the the indigenous populations were responsible for the fires just to make him look bad. As if he needed any help with that.
The Agriculture Minister, Teresa Cristina, claimed during an interview that if there were more cattle in the area, there would be less fires, "cattle are firemen of the wetlands [...] they trim the pasture and don't leave as much dry foliage or organic mass to burn." Considering that cattle ranchers are the main source of illegal fires and several other illegal activities, including but not limited to assassination and arson, that is some stellar level of ironic bullshit. To the surprise of no one, Bolsonaro approved of that message.
Meanwhile, the man put in charge of the ministry that was supposed to fight those things, Ricardo Salles, pretends there's nothing out of the ordinary going on, that it's being overblown and, because he can't resist even a figurative smoke screen, points that Africa and California are burning even more, which, as usual from anyone from the Bolsonaro government, is diversionist bullshit. Bolsonaro and his ministers have yet to complain that NASA is being taken over by communists or that their instruments are unreliable, things they always do when it's INPE and other Brazilian institutes, despite both showing the same thing: that the fires are without precedent.
“”Wouldn't it be cheaper to invest in the cure instead of the vaccine?
|—26 October 2020|
“”Everyone that caught the virus is vaccinated, even more efficiently than the vaccines [...] As long as I'm president and have the parliament with me, we'll fight so the well meaning citizens have weapons and no obligation to wear masks.
|—17 June 2021|
When the SARS-CoV-2 hit Brazil in late February, most states actually responded with significant lockdowns and social distancing rules. However, Bolsonaro was against all that. Publicly, he said that it was just a little flu, that it wouldn't kill more than the common cold. He openly denounced governors that took preventive measures and always ignored every rule about not wearing a mask or to avoid large gatherings. His followers did exactly the same, complaining about masks, ignoring restrictions and dumbly believing it was a communist plot. In a book that Luiz Henrique Mandetta, the first Health Minister that was later fired, is writing, he explains that part of the problem is that Bolsonaro truly believes that the virus is a biological weapon created by the Chinese for the latin american left parties to get to power. Let that sink in for a moment. That is the level of stupidity Brazilians, and to a lesser extent, the rest of the world, are dealing with. The second Health Minister, Nelson Teich, resigned after a month in office, as he quickly understood that he was there to be Bolsonaro's puppet, to approve and endorse every stupid thing the president said, not to actually come up with a plan to fight the pandemic.
Bolsonaro's calls for the people to act stupid and ignorant probably would have had a smaller effect if he didn't have a large reach in social media, mainly Twitter, and Whatsapp groups. That is due to the large botnet he kept from the 2018 election, aptly named Gabinete do Ódio (Hate Cabinet), which, despite being illegal and also being illegally funded during the elections, was never deactivated. During the pandemic, it ran full throttle to spew falsehoods everywhere it could, whether it was to say chloroquine was the miracle drug with 100% efficiency, that "the cousin of a friend died but the cause of death was registered as COVID-19", that the coffins were actually empty or, more often, to attack anyone that dares say Bolsonaro might be wrong on anything. Ex-supporters only "find out" about that once they get on the wrong end of the attack campaigns.
Bolsonaro in many ways emulated his "political cousin" in the United States, Donald Trump. Both resisted social distancing, both lashed out against lockdowns, and both compared the coronavirus to the flu. Both attacked medical experts, and both touted the medically unproven drug hydroxychloroquine as the cure for the infection. Both also eventually tested positive for COVID-19 (Bolsonaro in July 2020, and Trump in October 2020).
As of October 13, 2020, Brazil has surpassed 150,000 deaths officially confirmed to have been caused by COVID-19. It's important to take that number with some skepticism, as the Bolsonaro government, and some states', are actively trying to make the pandemic look like something small. The Health Ministry, which had a page keeping track of all deaths, took it down to pamper the dear leader. The numbers come from what news outlets can gather from state and municipal Health Secretaries.
With the rush to create a vaccine having a Chinese one in the lead, CoronaVac, Bolsonaro was quick to state that the vaccination won't be mandatory and that the Chinese vaccine, specifically, won't enter the country, citing that it doesn't have approval from government agencies. Of course, that is a blatant lie, first because the vaccine would be produced in Brazil, as a partnership between Sinovac, the Chinese company, and Butantan Institute, a Brazilian public institution that develops several vaccines, antidotes and drugs. Second, Anvisa, the agency that regulates drugs and vaccines, never found any problems with Sinovac in the years that the company worked within the country. While it's easy to attribute Bolsonaro's decision to just him being a xenophobic sociopath, this was also a political maneuver, as the state governor of São Paulo, João Doria, a possible competitor for the 2022 elections, led the negotiations between Sinovac and Butantan to get the vaccine to São Paulo. Update: Sinovac's vaccine has turned out to be somewhat problematic, so this might be a stopped clock moment for him - though, given his lack of common sense, it might just be coincidental luck.[note 1] Expect something along the lines of "the Bible told me that".
To put that in perspective, the other leading vaccine, Oxford vaccine, with a partnership between Astrazeneca laboratory and Fiocruz, did not find any resistance from Bolsonaro.
In late March 2021, official COVID-19 deaths in Brazil rose above 300,000, with Brazil at the time having the highest amount of deaths from COVID-19 per day. The total death count in Brazil at this time was only exceeded by the United States, who had just begun a mass vaccination campaign without any supply constraints. The vaccination rollout in Brazil, in contrast, was proceeding very slowly. Intensive care occupancy in Brazil was at 80% or above in all but two of Brazil's 27 states. 
Rather than resolving these issues, Bolsonaro preferred to spend his energy battling states that imposed lockdown measures in an attempt to control the virus, and arresting critics and protesters of his policy failures. Bolsonaro called governors who wished to impose COVID-19 lockdowns "tyrants" and, in a speech to his supporters at an impromptu birthday party on March 21, noted that they could "count on our armed forces to defend your freedom" (meaning, of course, "freedom" to not socially distance, not wear face masks, and "freedom" to not "lockdown" and continuing to mingle as if a massive pandemic wasn't happening). Worringly, many Bolsonaro followers were emulating Bolsonaro and following this problematic "advice", a bad idea considering that a new more transmissible variant called "P.1" was taking hold in Brazil. Experts also warned that the out of control pandemic also made it far more possible that new potentially more transmissible or deadly variants would emerge. This made Brazil, and the failure of Bolsonaro's leadership on COVID-19, a threat to global health.
On March 24, 2021, Arthur Lira, an ally of the president in Congress, raised "the yellow flag" regarding Bolsonaro's poor response to COVID-19, warning Bolsonaro to ramp it up or face possible impeachment. This happened only two months after the election presidential election of the Brazil's Chamber of Deputies, which Lira won with Bolsonaro's full throttle support. On March 29, Bolsonaro's response, intending to show that he was the one in charge, was to shuffle his cabinet around, replacing a third of the cabinet. One of those removed, however, was defense minister General Fernando Azevedo e Silva. Ironically considering his previous shout-outs to the armed forces and his emphasis on increasing military ties in the government, this triggered a mass resignation from the heads of the army, navy, and air force, which some saw as a cynical effort from the army to cut loose from a flailing government. Others expressed concern that the turmoil actually signified that Bolsonaro, who has openly expressed his admiration for Brazil's 1964-1985 military dictatorship, was making maneuvers to undermine democracy.
His response to the crisis has been called genocidal more than once, and it's easy to understand why. The fine line between gross incompetence and actual malice is very blurry when it comes to Bolsonaro.
He never hid his contempt for certain people (natives, blacks, poors) and clearly does not value human life. On March 4, 2021, during a speech, he angrily said "Chega de frescura, chega de mimimi, vamos ficar chorando até quando?", which roughly translates to "Stop the fussiness, quit your whining, how long are we going to cry?", because the deaths caused by the "little flu" kept forcing state and city governments to issue lockdowns, which Bolsonaro has always been 100% against.
When Manaus, the capital of the state of Amazonas, suffered a healthcare collapse in January 2021, one of the main problems the hospitals faced was lack of oxygen cylinders. Both Bolsonaro and his then Health Minister, Eduardo Pazuello, denied any logistics problems. Later on, it was shown that they were aware of the impending collapse but did nothing. Unlike the Brazilian government, Venezuela actually helped and sent extra oxygen cylinders to the city. Bolsonaro being Bolsonaro, thanked by implying Venezuelans are so hungry they've eaten all their dogs.
When India and South Africa asked for a temporary waive of patents so anyone could produce their versions of approved vaccines, Brazil, who would normally side with such an initiative, was against it.
Despite his many well documented speeches and answers showing how anti-vaccine he is, the risk of losing the election in 2022 to Lula da Silva made Bolsonaro take a 180, at least on paper, in his anti-vaccine stance. Read that again. The only thing that made Bolsonaro publicly approve vaccination was the risk of losing his power.
To make matters worse for Brazilians, he was completely in favor of a new law that allowed companies to get the vaccines straight from international suppliers. The advertised reasoning being that the bosses will buy them and vaccinate their employees, since companies and corporations are more efficient than the government, something that is easy to be true when you actively undermine the government. The real reason being that it will allow the rich get their vaccines, possibly from black markets, they can sell any surplus and the government can wash its hands regarding low supplies for the masses. A win-win for the wealthy.
Time and again, Bolsonaro has hailed the "Covid Kit" (Chloroquine, Ivermectin, Azithromycin, Clexane) as the holy grail and guaranteed cure to COVID-19, despite ample evidence that it is not only useless for treating it, it increases the risk of death. If he could have his way, he'd have the population reach herd immunity exactly the worst way possible: let everyone get the disease ASAP so "we can get over it". While he never put it that way, he did say that the pandemic would only be over after 70% of the population got the disease. A study by NGO Conectas Direitos Humanos and the University of São Paulo also seems to bear this out.
Family and Militias
At the end of 2018 came his first crisis, as accusations emerged of a close friend of his, Fabrício Queiroz, being a member of the militia that runs parallel to Rio de Janeiro's government. Said militia is composed mostly of cops (retired and active) that took over the very lucrative drug trafficking business and protection racketeering after the old criminal leaders were either killed or jailed. Not only that, there was strong evidence pointing that Flavio Bolsonaro, one of Jair's sons, had hired Queiroz to collect a percentage of his assessors' salaries. So far, Queiroz failed to come up with a "Plausible story" and there is a high probability that the case will be archived and forgotten by the justice system, as the initial investigation didn't have a court order, despite many previous cases, including Lava Jato, having their initial investigations begin without a court order, but a request from COAF, the agency that controls and audits suspicious money movement.
As if having one of his sons directly involved wasn't enough, there is also the possibility of the family being involved, even if indirectly, with the murder of Marielle Franco. Context: Marielle was a rising left-wing politician in the state of Rio de Janeiro, being black and from a poor background (like the vast majority of the population) and also being lesbian. On March 14th 2018, she was ambushed and shot dead, along with her driver. A very obvious political crime, the investigation went everywhere but the most likely culprits, the Rio de Janeiro militias, one with the charming name of Escritório do Crime (lit. Crime Office). The reason for successive "mistakes", including loss of footage that could help reveal the perpetrators, is as stated above: the criminal group has active cops in its midst and is well connected to the higher ups, so it's easy for them to disrupt the investigation. As of November 2019, the crime is still unsolved.
The current suspects of the shooting, Ronnie Lessa and Elcio de Queiroz (no relation to Fabricio), had their movement traced and it led the investigation to the condo where Bolsonaro has a mansion. At first, any relation to him could be discarded as mere coincidence, as the house the duo visited was of another person, who got busted for possessing a stock of 117 M-16 rifles, this in March 13th. However, the condo's porter stated to the police that he remembers people asking to go to Bolsonaro's house on the day of the crime, which is what he also wrote down on the entrance papers. Once the news broke out, Bolsonaro and his family went into a frenzy, with the patriarch doing a livestream and bellowing at Globo, threatening the group to remove their TV concession and effectively shutting down the channel. Not only that, Jair immediately ordered Sergio Moro, Justice Minister, to take care of the porter. It took two hours for the prosecutor responsible for the investigation, Carmen Eliza Bastos de Carvalho, to evaluate the audio logs and make a press conference to state that the porter lied. Said prosecutor was later shown to be an avid supporter of Bolsonaro and she also posed together with Rodrigo Amorim, the deputy that broke the honor plaque that renamed a street after Marielle. At first, she denied that this would influence the investigation at all, but stepped down after she realized nobody would believe that.
On another front, Carlos Bolsonaro very quickly posted on his twitter (and later deleted) the audio logs of the porter's calls on the day of the murder. However, this raised more questions than it answered:
- How did he have access too ALL audio logs, including those for other houses?
- What proof is there that he didn't tamper with any of them?
- Why did the police evaluate a copy of the logs, instead of the originals?
Jair Bolsonaro later claimed that his son got the audios on his behalf, before the logs could be tampered with. Needless to say, their interference completely ruined the evidence, casting doubt over whether they didn't tamper with any of it.
While it is possible that they had nothing to do with the crime, the speed at which they and their lackeys responded, as well as the overall intentionally slow and faulty execution of the investigation, raises serious suspicions. Given Brazil's track record, don't expect the factual truth to come out anytime soon.
Olavo de Carvalho
One of Bolsonaro's chief intellectual sources is Olavo de Carvalho, often described as "Bolsonaro's guru" (or, by Nick Burns, described as "part Roger Scruton and part Alex Jones"). Carvalho is a batshit crazy lunatic, foul-mouthed conservative, (USA) nationalist, self-educated (or self-described) philosopher, who began as a Trotskyite but switched to the right in a cloud of irrationality. He combines a deep hatred of the PT (Partido dos Trabalhadores, Workers' Party) and all things of the left and opposition to homosexuality with a mindset rooted in every conspiracy theory and a lot of deeply weird occultism and irrational ideas such as astrology. He appears to be skeptical of Einstein's Theory of Relativity and of heliocentrism and other non-geocentric worldviews. Here's a small rundown of other nice characteristics of him:
- He's an Obama birther.
- Claims that Nazism was planned by Stalin
- Claims every Brazilian political party, and therefore every politician, is communist
- Also states that Brazil was always ruled by communists
- Thinks 9/11 was a leftist job
- Doesn't really believe in evolutionism
- Believes in the flat earth conspiracy theory
Considering the really low bar for most of his ministers, it's a real surprise Bolsonaro didn't formally name Olavo for anything.
In June 2020, Olavo saw many of the names he initially endorsed being kicked out of the government. This caused him to start criticizing Jair Bolsonaro. Ironically, one day later, facing legal prosecution for not paying fines after losing a court case, Olavo asked Bolsonaro for help, which the president promptly ignored. The relationship only deteriorated from there and Olavo has been mostly absent from anything regarding the government, though most of his followers are completely loyal to Bolsonaro, and a number of them still hold high positions in the government hierarchy.
Preparing for a Coup
After Sergio Moro, the judge behind Lava Jato (Car Wash), was declared suspect in March 2021 by the Supreme Court and Lula da Silva was declared innocent and had all his political rights reinstated, the ex-president began a steady climb on polling opinion for the 2022 presidential elections. Bolsonaro immediately began a furious attack on the elections themselves, claiming several times that the electronic urns used in Brazil are "black boxes" and easily hacked. When asked if he had proof, he said "I'll show you proof if I want to!" Jair Bolsonaro made it clear that the only result he will accept in 2022 is his victory, anything else is fraud. Sounds familiar?
“”I will show it in the next days -- I don't have an obligation to show the proof to anybody... So, you have to show proof? I'll show if I want to!
|—Jair Bolsonaro, July 7th 2021. The man hates how burden of proof works.|
Bolsonaro also tried a desperate attempt to pass a new law that would give voters a paper receipt of their vote, so it could be "properly audicted", claiming the paper receipt was the only way to truly be sure your vote wasn't frauded (which is a blatant lie). On the day of voting in the Chamber of Deputies, he held a military parade in an attempt to pressure the vote to go in his favor. The law did not pass by a tight margin.
- As a side note, the Brazilian electronic urn is a relatively simple machine. It just has a screen and a physical, numeric keyboard, without any components or ports to connect to any kind of network, cabled or wireless. Each vote is saved to an internal storage card. Once voting is over, the urn is taken to the local Electoral Tribunal to have the card read and the votes computed. The process isn't impenetrable and anyone savvy in information security can think of ways to interfere, such as: installing a malicious firmware in a number of urns, getting access to the storage cards before they are read or hacking a local Electoral Tribunal's database. Neither Bolsonaro nor any of his followers, however, can articulate how the frauds they claim to exist happened.
- Guess who once received fraudulent votes back when elections were fully on paper, in 1994? Ironically, he didn't even need the less than 50 fraudulent votes he got, as he was the 3rd most voted federal deputy candidate for the state, which, along with the fact that all those fake votes were isolated to a single voting zone, made the Electoral Tribunal decide that he shouldn't lose it.
"No reason for impeachment"
Despite a very long list of reasons why Brazil as a whole could do without Bolsonaro and his family, as well as several actions that he made that, under normal circumstances, would serve as the basis for an impeachment, and despite over 100 demands to start an impeachment process, Jair Bolsonaro has no such risk, thanks to a very favorable congress and congress presidents.
Rodrigo Maia, the Chamber of Deputies president (the Brazilian lower house) during 2019-20, famously said on March 2020 that "this is no time for impeachment
Arthur Lira, elected as Chamber of Deputies president after Maia and a steady ally of Bolsonaro, said that "there is no justification for opening impeachment proceedings at this time"
- breaks decorum every day
- frequently attacks and incites his followers against the Supreme Court judges
- spreads lies and false accusations daily
- wants to get rid of the indiginenous populations
- has ties to the Rio de Janeiro militias, which are criminal groups
- used the Brazilian intelligence service, ABIN, to help with his son Flavio Bolsonaro's defense in a corruption case
- possibly knew about a large corruption scheme going on at the Health Ministry when it tried to import the Indian Covaxin and did nothing about it
- is openly, but indirectly, threatening to give a coup d'etat in 2022, in the increasingly likely chance that he loses the elections
"No reason for impeachment" indeed.
- See the Wikipedia article on Jair Bolsonaro.
- Jair Bolsonaro Is Elected President of Brazil. Read His Extremist, Far-Right Positions in His Own Words. — Even more quotes
- What Brazil’s President, Jair Bolsonaro, has said about Brazil's Indigenous Peoples — A compilation of Bolsonaro's quotes on Brazil's indigenous people, with links
- It is.
- O que é golden shower? by Jair M. Bolsonaro (04:26 - 6. March 2019) Twitter (archived from March 11, 2019).
- Brazil's Bolsonaro: God made me president (December 13, 2019) AFP via MSN.
- Jair Bolsonaro: Brazil's far-right president in his own words, The Guardian, 28 Oct 2018
- Conversations/Jair Bolsonaro; A Soldier Turned Politician Wants To Give Brazil Back to Army Rule, James Brooks, New York Times, 25 July 1993
- Brazil's 'bullets, beef and bible' caucus wants to imprison 16-year-olds, Bruce Douglas, The Guardian, 17 April 2015
- Lula’s prosecution shows nobody is above the law, Financial Times, 24 Feb 2019
- A entrevista mais sincera de Bolsonaro revela zoofilia, violência contra mulher e frisa homofobia, HuffPo Brasil
- Jair Bolsonaro: Brazil presidential frontrunner stabbed at campaign rally, 2018-09-06
- "The danger posed by Jair Bolsonaro". The Economist. 2018-8-10.
- Jornal GGN:
- Zero Hora: "Ela não merece [ser estuprada] porque ela é muito ruim, porque ela é muito feia. Não faz meu gênero. Jamais a estupraria."
- Brazil: At least 28 killed, including an officer, in Rio de Janeiro police shootout with drug traffickers
- Police Carry Out The Most Lethal Operation in The History of RJ, with at Least 25 Dead
- 1999 Interview with Bolsonaro - Archive from IstoÉ: "Não sou contra, não. Desde que seja com a mulher dos outros. Depois que todas as mulheres estiverem usando, aí a minha poderá usar. O fio dental foi um escândalo e hoje é normal. Tudo é evolução."
- 1999 Interview with Bolsonaro - Archive from IstoÉ: "Tem de ser uma decisão do casal."
- Dilma Rousseff: Brazilian congress votes to impeach president, Jonathan Watts, The Guardian, 18 April 2016
- See the Wikipedia article on Jair Bolsonaro.
- An arroba is a unit used in Brazil mostly by cattle traders, corresponding roughly to 15 kg or 33 lbs.
- https://g1.globo.com/sp/vale-do-paraiba-regiao/noticia/2019/07/20/diretor-do-inpe-nega-acusacoes-de-bolsonaro-reafirma-dados-sobre-desmatamento-e-diz-que-nao-deixara-cargo.ghtml Also contains the quotes of Bolsonaro's accusations.
- Brazil's Bolsonaro says cure, not vaccine, way out of coronavirus crisis. Reuters, 26 October 2020.
- Metropoles, 17 June 2021
- "What Bolsonaro’s COVID-19 Case Tells Us About Trump’s" by Christian Paz, Atlantic, 2020 October 3
- "Coronavirus: Brazil's President Bolsonaro tests positive", BBC News, 2020 July 8
- "Donald Trump Is The Latest World Leader To Contract Covid-19 — Here Are The Rest" by Robert Hart, Forbes, 2020 October 2
- China COVID vaccine reports mixed results — what does that mean for the pandemic?
- "Brazil Blows Past 300,000 Covid Deaths With No Respite in Sight" by Rachel Gamarski and Caroline Aragaki, Bloomberg, 2021 March 24
- "In Brazil, few Covid vaccines, world's deadliest daily record and misinformation" by Carolina Torres and Leonardo Coelho, NBC News, 2021 March 29
- "Americans are rushing to get vaccinated as covid-19 cases spread", Economist, 2021 April 3
- "No vaccines, no leadership, no end in sight. How Brazil became a global threat" by Matt Rivers, CNN, 2021 March 22
- "Covid: Brazil's Bolsonaro calls governors 'tyrants' over lockdowns" by BBC News, 22 March 2021
- "Bolsonaro uses Brazil's dictatorship-era law as protesters depict him as a Nazi", Associated Press, 2021 March 19, reprinted at TheGuardian.com
- "Brazil's Bolsonaro calls governors 'tyrants' over Covid-19 lockdowns", France24, 2021 March 22
- "Bolsonaro Put on Notice by House Speaker on Virus Response" by Samy Adghirini, Bloomberg, 2021 March 24
- "Brazil Is Looking Like The Worst Place On Earth For COVID-19" by Philip Reeves, NPR, 2021 March 23
- "Bolsonaro under fire as Brazil hits 300,000 COVID-19 deaths", PBS.Org, 2021 March 25
- See the Portuguese Wikipedia article on Fernando Azevedo e Silva
- "Brazil’s armed forces pull away from Jair Bolsonaro" by The Economist, 2021 March 31
- "Brazil: Military Chiefs Replaced Amid Major Reshuffle Of Bolsonaro Government" by Laurel Wamsley, NPR, 2021 March 30
- "Brazil’s Bolsonaro failed to stop covid-19. Now he may be targeting democracy." by the Washington Post editorial board, 2021 April 2
- "An Insecure Bolsonaro Prepares For His Own January 6" by Brian Winter, Americas Quarterly, 2021 March 30
- Chega de frescura e mimimi, diz Bolsonaro sobre medidas para combater a Covid-19, Reuters
-  By Reuters
- Bolsonaro ataca Vezenuela depois de país enviar oxigênio a Manaus, Estado de Minas
- The Guardian
- 10 momentos em que Bolsonaro foi contra a vacina, Estado de Minas
- Brazilian Congress Setting Up Corporations to Cut Covid-19 Vaccine Line, Andrew Fishman
- Our doctor prescribed a medication used to treat parasites in livestock, Terrence McCoy
- Bolsonaro has downplayed virus fears for months, MAURICIO SAVARESE and DAVID BILLER Associated Press, 8 July 2020
- "Study finds that Jair Bolsonaro carried out an 'institutional strategy to spread the coronavirus'". Eliane Brum. El País. 29 January 2021.
- You'll be hard pressed to find any video of him where he doesn't use curse words and/or insults and denigrates his enemies (or even the viewer). His Twitter and Facebook feeds aren't too different.
- The New Brazilian Right, Nick Burns, American Affairs, Fall 2019, Volume III, Number 3
- Olavo de Carvalho questiona se Terra orbita o Sol; o que diz a ciência?, Tilt, 9/1/2019
- Olavo de Carvalho divulga documento falsificado de Obama, Diario do Centro do Mundo, 18 Aug 2015
- http://olavodecarvalho.org/urss-a-mae-do-nazismo/ This one's a hard read, as it uses archaic wording to feign higher learning and twisted logic to reach the conclusion
- https://www.facebook.com/carvalho.olavo/posts/672021019616642 "The 9/11 attack was the great chance that the republicans had to undo the left once and for all. At the behest of neocons, they opted to ally with them and attack an external enemy that had little to nothing to do with the attack. It was a disaster after another, and -- of course -- the left threw the blame on those that once treated them as friends instead of putting them in jail."
- http://olavodecarvalho.org/a-evolucao-da-evolucao/ Opening paragraph: "I do not know whether biological evolution happened or not. Nobody knows. What I know with absolute certainty is that, as an intellectual construct, evolutionism is one of the most dumb and confusing products that ever emerged of a human - or animal - head."
- Olavo cobra ajudade Bolsonaro