It was the Spaniard Felipe González who coined the famous phrase that went around the world comparing a former political president to a Chinese vase in a living room. They are all of great value to him, but they don’t know where to put it, waiting for a child to nudge it and tear it to pieces. The vase eventually becomes an obstacle.
Given the similar situation experienced by far-right President Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil, the parody of the former Spanish socialist president comes to mind. Until yesterday, the former president was considered a valuable, politically coveted object, even after losing elections. And suddenly a valuable vase appears, which, however, stands in the way of all rooms.
Even after the former president lost the election and fled to the United States, the political world that had bet on him continued to see him as something of value from which political dividends could be reaped. A Chinese vase that kept its price.
And suddenly, with the speed that the tide sometimes changes, former President Bolsonaro looms before the eyes of all those who raffled him off as a nuisance, a political nuisance that better be nudged.
Yes, suddenly everyone prefers to stay away from the American exile to which they fled after their defeat and later return victorious. Even new President Lula, who defeated him in the election, has hinted that if Bolsonaro returns, he would prefer not to be imprisoned, which could make him a martyr.
The right-wing liberal party that protected Bolsonaro, which failed to collect enough signatures to form its own party, now, especially after the failed coup, does not know what to do with him if he returns to Brazil. Especially since the electoral judge will most likely declare him unelectable for eight years.
Even the most conservative businessmen who campaigned for him and recently funded the coup plotters that upended the three seats of power in Brasilia are also showing more interest in his continuation abroad than at home. It was you who just suggested that you set up a private company in the United States to give political lectures. They even suggested how much he should charge for each of them: $10,000.
What if the United States didn’t extend the visa you entered on? And it is that the American President Biden, who will soon meet his Brazilian colleague Lula da Silva, already has enough with his Trump to cause headaches, and all the more so since 45 MPs of his party have already asked him to Bolsonaro to expel the country.
In the event that this should happen and the former Brazilian President is unable to continue his golden American exile, his business friends advise him to use the fact that he holds his Italian citizenship to move to the country that was his Ancestors. Anything but coming back here.
And his loyal followers, the most fanatical, his unconditional? They too, some already in prison and accused of taking an active part in the destruction in Brasilia, are beginning to become perplexed and confused. They were sure that their boss, their myth, their messiah, would not abandon them and would get the military to listen to him and become accomplices in his desire to establish an authoritarian government. Many of them are beginning to feel confused and even betrayed, while the politicians who, up until yesterday, openly or slyly raffled him off in search of the votes he garnered with his populist behavior, are at a loss.
And what about his wife, Michelle, the passionate evangelical who was so lively on the campaign trail that she’s already pitching herself as a candidate to succeed him? His wife, who very early on organized religious rites with evangelical pastors in the presidential palace, in which she would get on her knees in mystical ecstasy speaking foreign languages, asking God to drive out of this place the demons of communism that had left behind left governments.
The former First Lady of Bolsonaro, who initially refused to accompany her husband to the United States to spread the word about the breakup, now happily stays by his side, chatting, as she has appeared on social networks, with show and Advise women on the beauty products they use and love.
And all of this initially appears only as a prologue to a novel, the end of which no one in their right mind can foresee today. Will Bolsonaro and his supporters be able to emerge from the current lethargy and legal defeat and return to the arena of power with their anti-democratic rites and admit that they have been duped and duped? Will they again be the kings and wizards of social networks, cunning sowers of the fake news that have brought them so many dividends, or do networks also see it as the Chinese vase standing in the middle of the room?
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