There is no doubt that the world is going through tough times in many countries have been concerned about the quality of their democracies. However, there is also no way to confuse the wave of conservatism sweeping the planet with authoritarianism or, what is now conventionally called, the “new normal.” In Brazil it has been no different, we are under a “new normal”, but the forces against this overwhelming movement tend to confuse one with another. Against these positions we count on the solidity of our institutions.
The tone of our “new normal” has been the relationship of executive branch with the other branches of government, but although quite frictional, the results have been far from poor. The achievements have not been few, much less unimportant. Given this, the president’s style and the campaign promises, we should not expect a change in course. Anyway, it is for the good that the chairmen of House, Senate and Supreme Court all seem to be aligned (we hope!) in a larger reformist project of the Brazilian state.
This potential alignment is a huge acquired “advantage”, although it does not guarantee automatic bill approvals. Not really, especially since the maturation timespan for the approval of Social Security Reform was much longer than the next ones – it cannot be taken as a standard. Thus, for our coalition-based presidentialism in this “new normal” we should not expect easy rides until actual approvals. And herein lie the dangers, as each of the new reforms is an important challenge to overcome and add to the framework of measures to “complete” our homework.
However, even though we have not yet resumed investments, the new moment we’re living is undeniable. The clear and objective translation is that we are on the right track. Yes, perhaps greater control of statements by the president and his children, reducing political noise, could further propel and accelerate this process, but society and the institutions will be able to “prune” excesses and preserve our democracy. This is because political-institutional stability is key at this moment.
The time has come for the state reform. Our current liberal democracy has everything to launch and better serve the democratic order. The winds blow on our favor, markets anticipate this potential improvement and, even with lagged cycles in relation to the economy with still timid lead indicators, the takeoff is imminent. In fact, what we have today is absolute focus and consistency of purpose, without any ambivalence or pusillanimity on the side of our leaders. Gradually, the results are already showing up!