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Brazilians, as I know very well, are a hugely tolerant people with big hearts. They can and have put up with violence in their society, the lack of education, bad healthcare, National debt, high interest rates, the defeat (at crucial times) of their national football team and coincidentally the most recent assertion by some news sources that they are no longer the world’s largest exporter of sugar (...India’s name has been touted). All of them take strong exception to the root of many of these – the ‘cancer’ of bribery and corruption. It is interesting due to the current strength of feeling in this matter. I’ve asked a number of Brazilians prior to writing about the issues and they saw this as very important, if not the key, to the Presidential Election. It was always echoing the same answer – corruption and the description of it as a ‘... cancer...’. Election polls have shown how this has driven many of the electorate to punish current political leaderships of different parties and of different political ideologies for letting this happen and for the one fault they seem no longer able to forgive.


Operation Car Wash led until now, to the removal and incarceration of many in the higher echelons of Brazilian society and for the purpose of this article, it has led to the wholesale culling of the senior ranks of various Brazilian political parties – left, right and centre. We’ve lost a lot of the heirs apparent for political office and likely leaders of the country going well into the 2020’s. The situation is so fractured that a former convicted President of Brazil who is ineligible to run in this Election polled, until recently significantly higher than his nearest rival, a controversial far-right populist. There are at least eight significant candidates polling for President, the highest polled (at the time of writing) just 22%, yet from these will likely come the next President. Do not expect an answer at the first round on 7th October...everyone knows the real voting will be between the two finalists of the first round and will be held on the 28th.


...IT’S NOW BECOME A TOUCHSTONE AND RESONATES WITH THE FATE OF PAST BRAZILIAN PRESIDENTS.’.


Then there’s the most recent event, the stabbing in public of the now leading populist far-right candidate, thankfully not fatally. Here, this Election has taken on a particular Brazilian turn, almost a scene from history...or a popular TV novela. It’s now become a touchstone and resonates with the fate of past Brazilian Presidents. Perhaps the best way to describe this Election going forward is to use the words a senior executive at one of the TV studios producing novelas used when describing their work ‘It’s a big train that’s hard to stop once it gets going...it is a never-ending story for us.’.


Eddie Tofpik E: eddie.tofpik@admisi.com T: +44(0) 20 7716 8201


7 | ADMISI - The Ghost In The Machine | September/October 2018


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