Putin in the distance

André Ventura realized that the country of Camões continues to walk with a flap in one eye. It is, I believe, his only merit.

1. It is revealing that in Portugal, in the public space, there are so many people chattering about the tweets Trump and Bolsonaro's sayings, two disqualified, each in his own plan, and so little attention is paid to what happens in Russia, where Putin is ready to perpetuate his power with a referendum (next week, July 1 ) that will approve changes to the Constitution. If everything goes as he wants, Putin, 67, will have a free way to run (in 2024) for two more six-year terms. It will be guaranteed until 2036, when it reaches the age of 83. At least until then, Russia will have no other leader in the entire XNUMXst century.

The story is known. In 2008, after his two initial presidencies, Putin had to turn to a then friend, Medvedev, for four years to continue to rule from the post of prime minister. It has resumed in 2012 to date, with two other terms, already for six years. In the future, with the accountant to zero, he is preparing to die in the so-called 'duty fulfillment'. You will not need subterfuge. What is frightening is that all of this will happen in Democracy and in the scrupulous compliance with constitutional rules, altered by what will be the 'will of the people'. In politics, as in football, talent and brazenness towards the opponent makes the difference.

2. Putin is not a poorly prepared fool like Bolsonaro. Not a business hype like Trump. These will leave the scene one of these days, through elections as normal as the ones that made them arrive. However, they lose support. Putin does not. The Russian president has another intellectual dimension and having been an agent of the KGB, in the twilight of the USSR, gave him a baggage of manipulation that makes choir boys look like the two beloved ghosts of the Portuguese left.

Like them, he came to power due to economic discontent and lack of security, and he did not fail. Russia has grown. People's incomes have multiplied by two or three. The revolts, as in Chechnya, were crushed without contemplation. The armed forces and the police have strengthened their powers. Occasionally, opponents were eliminated, either by life or by as dramatic as timely accidents.

International organizations recognize all this by classifying Russia as an 'authoritarian' regime, which allows for real mafias in various sectors of the country's life, especially in the economic sector, in which friendly oligarchs thrive. Even in sport it was what was seen with organized state doping, the reason why the country will be formally left out of the next Olympic Games, if they compete when they compete.

3. What is curious is that Putin, as insensitive to Covid-19 as Trump or Bolsonaro, is much less referred to by the national media. It does not motivate news programs. It does not raise concerns in the networks. It is not debated in the media. It does not create doubts in the parties. Portugal, even in the post-contraption, seems anesthetized by a strange disease that also makes our curious democracy an object of study.

Chega, by the unprepared Ventura, who this Saturday promises a march to Avenida da Liberdade, in Lisbon, only grows because of this ideological blindness. When, today, left-wing populism is denied, which exists and is as dangerous or as dangerous as right-wing populism, as Stalinism was as dramatic as (Hitler's) Nazism, it is a balance that is lost. Look at how self-proclaimed an anti-fascist enjoys more consideration than an anti-communist counterpart when the rejection of any kind of dictatorship should define any ordinary democrat.

We are in the territory of selective causes, in a country where corruption is rampant and in which everything that is not illegal may be possible because ethics is not even worth a nomination for Banco de Portugal. André Ventura realized that the country of Camões continues to walk with a flap in one eye. It is, I believe, his only merit.

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