Depois de uma campanha desgastante e apÃ³s um dia de grande movimento eleitoral, o paÃs escolheu seu novo presidente. Um lÃder concebido pela prÃ³pria forÃ§a do povo, carregado de carisma, que foi capaz de contaminar o paÃs com seu discurso de mudanÃ§a e uniÃ£o do povo – a despeito de sua falta de experiÃªncia administrativa. Um dia apÃ³s o pleito, todos os jornais propagaram a boa nova. O paÃs ainda celebrava a escolha, o fim do continuismo. Demonstrava, em cada face, o significado real da palavra “esperanÃ§a”.
After an exhausting campaign and a very busy election, this country has chosen its new president. A leader designed by the strength of its people, who is full of charisma and was able to infect the country with his speech about change and unity of people – despite his lack of administrative experience. The day after the election, all the newspapers brought the good news. The country also celebrated its choice, the end of the political status quo. The real meaning of the word “hope” was shown on everyone's face.
This was on Monday, October 28 2002, as Brazilian blogger Marmota notes, and Brazil had just elected its thirty-fifth president: Luiz InÃ¡cio Lula da Silva, a former trade union leader and a founding member of the country's Workers’ Party. If we look at class rather than race, those elections changed history too, and the images of the huge mass of people waiting for Obama at the night of November 04, 2008 at Grant Park in Chicago actually reminded many Brazilians of Lula's arrival at Avenida Paulista, in SÃ£o Paulo, a little more than six years ago. Looking at what has happened in Brazil since, Marmota says that Obama may want to look up to Lula to find out how to deal with people's overwhelming hope and expectations of immediate changes:
As comparaÃ§Ãµes, evidentemente, sÃ³ fazem algum sentido ao analisarmos dois elementos. Um Ã© a euforia pÃ³s-vitÃ³ria; outro Ã© o regime de governo. Em nossas democracias, o poder estÃ¡ nas mÃ£os de um cidadÃ£o eleito pelo povo; este, ao lado de seus partidÃ¡rios, sÃ³ consegue governar apÃ³s uma criteriosa composiÃ§Ã£o de equipe, onde o escolhido distribui o poder entre confiÃ¡veis e competentes. Ou nÃ£o. Pois diante de tamanha expectativa, hÃ¡ o risco da decepÃ§Ã£o naqueles cuja confianÃ§a foi depositada com tamanho fervor. Provavelmennte, entre as prÃ³ximas decisÃµes a serem tomadas pelo novo presidente dos Estados Unidos, a mais Ã³bvia pode ser pinÃ§ada desta naÃ§Ã£o dos trÃ³picos: para nÃ£o acabar com as crenÃ§as e esperanÃ§as alheias, certifique-se de que estÃ¡ cercado pelas pessoas certas.
Of course, these comparisons only make any sense when we look at two elements. One is the post-victory euphoria, another is the government system. In our democracies, power is at the hands of a citizen elected by the people; Together with their supporters, he/she can only rule after a careful composition of their team, in which the elected person distributes power to reliable and competent people. Or not. Well, when facing such expectations, there is a risk of disappointing those who had completely trusted them. Probably, among the next decisions to be taken by the United States president-elect, the most obvious ones may be pinched from this tropical nation: in order not to put an end to people's beliefs and hopes, do make sure you are surrounded by the right people.
The government of Luiz InÃ¡cio Lula da Silva has managed to reduce poverty, expand its internal market and the country is even in a better position to endure global financial turbulence. However, his achievements have been marred by corruption schandals – exactly what Brazilians wanted to change. Journalist Victor Barone interviewed Lula in 2003, right at the beginning of his first therm in office, and asked him if he feared he would disappoint his electors. He says Lula replied: â€œI believe there it only makes sense for a person like me to reach the presidency if it is to make a difference never seen.â€ The blogger says those days he believed good intentions could save the world, nowadays he fears they can not:
Ã‰ que hÃ¡ algo que nÃ£o me sai da cabeÃ§a, uma relaÃ§Ã£o entre o Lula de 2003 – fiel depositÃ¡rio da esperanÃ§a da populaÃ§Ã£o brasileira por mudanÃ§as reais no Ã¢mbito polÃtico, econÃ´mico e social – e o presidente Obama. Pupulam pela imprensa e pela internet odes ao primeiro presidente negro da maior naÃ§Ã£o do planeta, do maior impÃ©rio da histÃ³ria moderna, quiÃ§Ã¡ de todos os tempos. Confesso que Obama fascina, meche com nosso imaginÃ¡rio, nos faz pensar que a humanidade pode avanÃ§ar deixando de lado anacronismos como o racismo. Mas, entÃ£o, penso em Lula e faÃ§o uma relaÃ§Ã£o entre o desencanto polÃtico de milhÃµes de brasileiros e o que poderÃ¡ ocorrer na AmÃ©rica e no mundo se Barack Obama falhar em sua missÃ£o de guiar os destinos dos EUA rumo a um futuro menos belicista e egocÃªntrico.
There is something that I can not get off my head, the link between the Lula of 2003 – trustee of the Brazilian population's hopes of real changes in the political, economic and social spheres – and President-elect Obama. The media and the Internet are full of odes to the first black president of the greatest nation on Earth, the greatest empire of modern history, perhaps of all time. I confess that Obama fascinates, lets our imagination go, makes us think that humanity can move forward leaving behind anachronisms such as racism. But then, I think of Lula and make a link between the political disenchantment of millions of Brazilians and what might happen in America and the world if Barack Obama fails in his mission to guide the U.S. towards a less bellicose and egocentric future.
Even the Brazilian President Luiz InÃ¡cio Lula da Silva himself could not avoid comparisons. At a Mercosur meeting last Friday, he said that Barack Obama's election in the United States “began in South America,” mentioning the leaders that com from the poorest backgrounds, such as Evo Morales (Bolivia), Fernando Lugo (Paraguay), TabarÃ© VÃ¡zquez (Uruguay) to become presidents and his own election in Brazil:
“Eu sempre tomei cuidado para nÃ£o opiniar sobre as eleiÃ§Ãµes em outros paÃses, mas no caso dos Estados Unidos eu nÃ£o me contive e fiz questÃ£o de dizer que gostaria que Obama ganhasse. E tudo isso comeÃ§ou na AmÃ©rica do Sul. Obama Ã© mais um passo disso”.
“I have been always careful not to express my opinions on other countries’ elections, but in the case of the United States case I could not hold myself and had said I'd like Obama to win. And it all began in South America. Obama is another step forward.”
According to news outlets, the President Lula is negotiating a private meeting with president-elect Barack Obama before the G-20 Washington summit on 15 November. Blog do Savarese gives Obama a hint:
Apesar dos pesares, talvez o rapaz devesse pedir uns conselhos pro tio Lula.
Despite everything, perhaps the guy should ask Uncle Lula to give him some advice
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