One of the most perverse effects of the parliamentary coup d’état, deposing the president with reasons legally challenged by the most respected jurists in our country and abroad, was to impose an economic and social project of adjustments and legal changes that constitute an assault on the already underdog common good. The coup was promoted by the wealthy and anti-national oligarchies, who used an embarrassing parliament for its lack of ethics and national sense, by which they aim to drain to their advantage the lion’s share of national wealth. This has been denounced by notable people such as Luiz Alberto Moniz Bandeira, Jesse Souza, and Bresser Pereira, among others.
There is an ongoing dismantling of the nation. This means the implementation of an ultraconservative and predatory neoliberalism that virtually nullifies the social gains that favor millions of poor and miserable people, taking away rights in relation to wages, working conditions, and pensions, as well as reducing and even liquidating key projects such as Family Bag, My House, My Life, Light for All, the FIES and other institutes that allowed access to technical or superior studies for the sons and daughters of poverty.
In particular, they have begun auctioning collective goods such as parts of Petrobras and put up for sale the national lands. Privatization always means a decrease in inventories of general interest goods that pass onto the hands of particular interest. There is an attack on what today is called “solidarity rights,” which subdue private interests to the collective and common interests.
They are eroding the two main pillars that historically built the common good: the participation of citizens (active citizenship) and the cooperation of all. Instead, the current order imposed by the perpetrators of the coup, emphasizes the notions of profitability, flexibility, adaptability and competitiveness. Citizen’s freedom is replaced by the freedom of market forces, the common good for the particular good, and the cooperation for competitiveness.
Participation and cooperation ensured the basis of interest and what is common. Denied those values, their existence is no longer socially guaranteed and their rights are not entrenched. Therefore, everyone feels obliged to guarantee his/her owns. Thus an overwhelming individualism, acolyte wave of hatred, homophobia, machismo and all kinds of discrimination arises.
The purpose of current managers, already recognized as incompetent, some verging on imbecility, is: the market has to win and society must lose. Still they naively believe that the market will regulate and resolve everything. If so, why are we going to build the common good? Social welfare has been delegitimized and the common good has been sent into limbo.
But we must denounce: the more you privatize the more particular interest get legitimized to the detriment of the general interest as well as weakening the State, the manager of general interest. They are imposing a killer capitalism on us.
How much social evil and barbarism will popular-base parties, Brazilian intelligence with sense of nationhood and sovereignty for our country, and social movements, those who are being sent from poverty into misery, endure?
But let us clarify the concept of common good. In the Infrastructural level, common good is fair access for everybody to the basic common goods such as food, health, housing, energy, security and communication. On the social level, it is the ability to live a physical and humanly satisfactory life with dignity and freedom in an environment of peaceful coexistence.
As it is being dismantled by the current unjust order, the common good must be rebuilt now. For that, it is important to give hegemony to cooperation and not to competition and to articulate all forces committed with the public interest so that they can resist, pressure, and take it to the streets.
On the other hand, the common good cannot be conceived anthropocentrically. Today awareness of the interdependence of all beings with everyone and the environment in which we live has been developed. We as humans are a link, though singular, of the community of life and also responsible for the common good of the community of life. We cannot sell our land or fail to define indigenous territories, the original owners of our country, nor neglect the rampant deforestation of the Amazon, that is happening now.
We humans have the same physical and chemical constituents with which the genetic code of all living things is built. Hence an objective kinship between all living beings is derived as it has been stressed by Pope Francis in his encyclical on integral ecology. Therefore, care for and defense of nature is to nurture and defend ourselves, because we are part of it. Because of this understanding, the common good cannot be only human, but all earthly and biotic community with whom we share life and destiny.
Cooperation is strengthened with more cooperation, for here lies the secret sap that permanently nourishes and revitalizes the common good, attacked by the forces that occupied the State and its apparatus in the interest of a few against the common good of everyone else.