Brazilians lost their patience, reached the limit and were close to electing a far-right-wing candidate on the first round.
"Even when everything asks for a little more calm / Even when the body asks for a little more soul / Life does not stop / While time accelerates and hurries / I refuse, I make time, I go in the waltz / Life is so rare / While everyone expects the cure of evil / And the madness pretends that this is all normal / I pretend to have patience."
The song with these lyrics is called "Patience". What Brazilians have lost. In Brazil, Lenine is the name of a singer. Lenine, in Brazil as in the world, is not a right-wing name and the Pernambuco singer does not appear to be a supporter of Jair Bolsonaro. But the Brazilians lost their patience. They have reached the limit of patience with the political system. And they almost elected on the first round a candidate that any European far-right would not disdain to present as a new rising star. Once can expect him to tour around Europe as if he were a rock star.
In 2013, time accelerated and hurried, but Brazilian political elites, especially those linked to central parties of the political system, such as the PT and the PSDB, could not care less. A wave of protest swept through the main Brazilian cities. A year before the football World Cup held in the country, there were protests against the Dilma Rousseff's PT government, but also against Brazil's structural backwardness in health, transportation, education. The PSDB, which has ruled for more than 20 years the largest state of the country, São Paulo, can not be aquitted. A considerably corrupt political class, with cases succeeding as the judicial Operation Lava-Jato was advancing - despite having a well-defined political target: the Workers Party (PT) and Lula, in particular.
The anti-PT sentiment is probably the most unifying political force in the country at this point. This wave of protest against the system has turned into a sea of support for a clownish candidate, inconsistent with the values of democracy, who is able to pass on an anti-system 'insurgent' image when he has been part of it for nearly three decades, known for his bombastic statements, which reveal poorly hidden racism, support for the Brazilian military dictatorship, homophobia, and torture. It is enough to remember that deputy Jair Bolsonaro, in the voting process for the impeachment of Dilma Rousseff in 2016, extended his greetings to the general who had tortured the same Rousseff, who had been a political opponent during the dictatorship and that, at that time, two years ago, was still Head of State.
With a low-cost campaign of maximum effectiveness in social networks (it is certainly not unknown to the type of media strategy of the former army captain's presidential candidacy that the overwhelming majority of voters with fewer possessions only have whatsapp as a social network, reading only titles in their cellphone, and without enough data to find the most explanatory and contextual texts). Bolsonaro almost got elected in the first round, the PSL congressional floor grew by 52 MPs (PT lost 13), the son was elected to the Senate and a bunch of protégés were elected or are clearly leading entering the second round. Brazilians understood that whoever has governed the country has, above all, mismanaged it; they hope for something different that will improve the country's economy. From there, they decided to give a nearly outright majority to those who assumed knowing nothing of economics.
Brazil in three weeks decides between democracy and a party candidate who fought hard for it, but who, after years and years in power, treated it badly (worse, the PT has a great difficulty in recognizing its own mistakes; "I made time, it went in the waltz", as the song of Lenine says) and, on the other side, the clear danger of a democratic setback representing the election of Jair Bolsonaro.
Can he change attitude, ideas and positions once he reaches the Palácio do Planalto? In theory, he can. But the same was expected from Donald Trump as soon as he arrived at the White House. And look at the outcome.