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25 years without Renato Russo: political activity in the work of the Brazilian rocker – Romulo Mattos

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25 years without Renato Russo: political activity in the work of the Brazilian rocker - Romulo Mattos

Romulo Mattos *

In a statement recorded in the book Memórias de um Legionário, Legião Urbana guitarist Dado Villa-Lobos does not skimp on the importance of the band’s singer Renato Russo to the rock generation of the 1980s. for his fellow rockers Tom Jobim for the bossa nova and the MPB gang in the 1950s and 1960s. And he uses Gilberto Gil’s song “Gilbertos” about his teacher João Gilberto to deal with his bandmate, transferring his lyrics to the band. eighties rock context: “Appears every one hundred years, one / And every twenty-five an apprentice.” While to conservative minds this parallel established by Dado Villa-Lobos seems heresy, they are two of the most prominent Brazilian generations in popular music – and no one intellectually mature would agree with the validity of imposed hierarchy in art and culture.

If an unusual comparison appears at the end of the aforementioned book, it begins with the guitarist’s recollection of the death of Renato Russo on October 11, 1996. Dado Villa-Lobos recalls that he received the news on the phone at 2:15 am, which left him “stunned” despite learning about his music partner’s shaky health when he said goodbye to him for several days before. The musician also mentioned how much attention was paid to the death of the singer in today’s edition of Jornal Nacional, the program with the highest audience on Rede Globo. To convince journalist Lilian Witte Fiebe of the legitimacy of creating a special story about the life and death of Renato Russo in this TV news, William Bonner threatened to play the kilometer-long texts from Faroeste caboclo, in an unusual way explaining the importance of the Urban Legion to Brazilian pop culture. Dado Villa-Lobos also mentioned the path before the funeral, during which he listened to songs from the band’s recently released album A Tempest on radios installed in cars stopped at traffic lights. Finally, he mentioned the crowd of fans at the Caju cemetery in Rio de Janeiro with flowers and guitars; it gave the environment a strong dose of emotion.

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Why are these stories still grabbing our attention 25 years later, as evidenced by the various stories that have spread across the Internet? They belong to the leader of the most popular rock band in the history of the country, which has sold over 15 million records. But it is better not to limit the discussion to quantitative indicators. If your lyrics combine love, friendship and politics with a poetic quality, the tunes co-created with Dado Villa-Lobos and Marcelo Bonfa have made them easier for Brazilians to absorb. Legian Urbana was at the forefront of musical and cultural renewal during the political re-democratization, besides being most responsible for the consolidation of the rock chain in the 1980s, when the genre stopped swearing and became appreciated by record companies. The group, which played in clubs or discos, played with growing success in gyms, and at its peak in football stadiums.

Unlike the current music scene, Legião Urbana was a massive rock group that was heavily involved in political issues. It seems inconceivable today that a few decades ago a large Brazilian audience would consume songs that criticized: machismo (“A Dança”); a sharp comparison of the prison and school systems (“O Reggae”); militarism or war (“Soldiers”, “Plants under the Aquarium” and “Song of the Warlord”) and the most evil elements of the military dictatorship (“What is this country?”, “Faroeste Caboclo”, “1965” and “La Maison Dieu”); imperialism and consumer society (“The Coca-Cola Generation”); the naturalization of violence in the modern world, human failures reflected in Justice, and cultural alienation generated by television (Badder-Meinhoff Blues); bureaucratization of access to social rights (Metropolis); and the right-wing New Republic governments (Theater of the Vampires, Metal Against the Clouds, and Perfection). However, when buying the records of the group Brasiliense, fans came in contact with lyrics that: defend the historical struggles of the working class, while not forgetting about the environment (“Fábrica”); engage in gay topics (“Soldiers”, “Daniel in Cova dos Leoins” and “Boys and Girls”); and they carry out political protests without brochures (Lost Time and The Indians). Finally, these numerous listeners could come in contact with extracts from “Internacional Comunista” subconsciously mixed with “Será” in the introduction to the 1986 Dois album.

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It is worth emphasizing that the singer hated the military. Along with his college friends in Brasilia bars, he cursed the dictatorship through the microphone – definitely a dangerous position. And, in addition to being physically affected by the repression of that period, he saw his own songs vetoed the bureaucracy of military governments in the first half of the 1980s. Renato Russo’s critical appetite for dictatorship was also evident in songs recorded by other bands such as Veraneio Vascaíno, which appeared on Capital Inicial’s 1986 debut, “Oh no, the military must return.” (…) Have these people forgotten? (…) Have we really forgotten (…) how bad it is not to have freedom? “. In the same program, he mentioned fascism, which, in his opinion, it was necessary to talk about:

“I think the big press hesitates, it steps on the ball, and here in Rio de Janeiro there are big newspapers that give a whole page to fascists and bald people (…). Nazis are everywhere. (…) I mean they are sexist, they are intolerant, they are idiots, and the problem is that they are idiots with ideology. And suddenly I, as a person, as a person and as an artist, in order (…) to preserve a purity of conscience, it would be nice to give an answer to this. (…) I think information is important. Fascism, prejudice and intolerance are based on a lack of information. “

Twenty-five years after the death of Renato Russo, his texts and public statements are important for understanding and criticizing Brazil in the conditions of fascism and neoliberalism, and this is the main reason why his figure is highly revered – despite the fact that we live in the context of the trivialization of ephemeris, for which contributes to the accelerated production and consumption of news on the Internet.

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* Romulo Mattos – Historian (PUC-RJ)

** This article does not necessarily reflect the views of the Forum.

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Ibovespa falls by 2.75% and returns to 107 thousand points; the political scenario and dismissals in the Ministry of Economy are not far off

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Bolsa de São Paulo (Marivaldo Oliveira/Estadão Conteúdo)

On the day of massive losses, Ibovespa, the main B3 index on Thursday, January 21, closed with a 2.75% drop. 107,735 points with investors are worried about the worsening fiscal situation in the country.

On Ibovespa, the only stocks to close higher were Suzano (SUZB3), which gained 1.47% following the announcement of the expectation of the plan. removing 40 million tonnes of CO2 from the atmosphere by 2025; and the BB Seguridade (BBSE3) papers, which had a slight increase of 0.80%. Klabin blocks (KLBN11) closed stable.

The index’s biggest loss was with Getnet (GETT11), whose units recorded a 19.76% drop since its debut at B3 on Monday.

Among the highlights of the day, the special committee Proposed Constitutional Amendment (PEC) Precatorium the cost ceiling rule has been changed. This change uses a new methodology that takes into account the consumer price index (IPCA) from January to December, rather than the period from June to June.

If the change is approved, the government will be able to increase spending by 8.7%, which is inflation market analysts forecast for this year.

If this larger reserve is added to the increase in the part of the payment of court orders, the budget for 2022 is approximately R $ 83 billion.

It is worth noting that this budget space will be used to finance adjustments to social programs within the spending ceiling.

To make matters worse, the foreign market contributed to the collapse of the Brazilian stock exchange. with concerns about the Chinese real estate sector and rising global inflation.

On wall street The Dow Jones Index closed almost steady, with a slight fall of 0.02% to 35,603 points; S&P 500 rose 0.30% to 4549 points; the Nasdaq index rose 0.62% to 15,215 points.

Economic agenda

There are no indicators on the agenda this Friday, August 22nd. Thus, the focus remains on the political scenario. the resignation of Bruno Funchal, Special Minister of Finance and Budget, and Jefferson Bittencourt, Secretary of the National Treasury, should affect investor sentiment.

The panic in the ministry was even greater when Deputy Special Secretary of the Treasury and Budget Guildenora Dantas and Deputy Secretary of the National Treasury Rafael Araujo left their positions.

According to the portfolio, ministry employees left for personal reasons.

The foreign economic agenda is expected to publish data on various purchasing managers’ indexes (PMI). PMI from Germany, Eurozone and USA will leave.

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Charles Michel advocates “political dialogue” after debate on Poland

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Charles Michel advocates "political dialogue" after debate on Poland

Dand according to sources – only on Friday the leaders will give a press conference, and there will not even be written conclusions, since this topic was not officially on the agenda – the discussion, which threatened to interfere with the summit that began today, “took place in a serene atmosphere” and provided ” the ability to identify specific challenges and better understand different points of view. “

Council President Charles Michel “concluded that the political dialogue must continue in search of solutions,” and today’s debate is “a step that should help lead to solutions.”

However, according to European sources, the European Council considered the protection of the rule of law and the independence of the judiciary to be “absolutely fundamental”, with several Member States advocating the use of mechanisms already in treaties and legislative texts to enforce it. respect, and some legal and institutional instruments are already in place or may soon be in place.

The debate on the rule of law – “addressed” informally, at the request of several member states, in light of the recent ruling by the Polish Constitutional Court that there are national rules that take precedence over European law – threatened to overshadow the European Council, which was launched today in Brussels and will run until Friday.

Just today, in a resolution adopted in Strasbourg, the European Parliament condemned Poland’s attacks on the rule of law in the EU and called on the European Council to take a “clear position” on the crisis and issue a joint statement “in the most energetic forms.” … “, Which will not happen.

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MEPs also defended economic sanctions, stressing that “EU taxpayers’ money should not be transferred to governments that grossly, deliberately and systematically compromise European values.”

The resolution approved today was preceded by a debate on Wednesday between European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki.

Speaking upon arrival at the European Council, whose agenda is the Poland / EU crisis, Morawiecki said he was “ready to talk” but rejected “the pressure of blackmail”.

“We will not act under the pressure of blackmail, [mas] we are ready for dialogue, ”the Polish Prime Minister said.

Portugal is represented at the summit by Prime Minister Antonio Costa, who today declined to make statements on his arrival at the Council.

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“There is room for an agenda that awakens hope.”

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Minister Facin mentions "authoritarian populism" that threatens democracy

67-year-old businessman Fabio Barbosa was one of the signers of the manifesto, signed by entrepreneurs and intellectuals in support of the country’s electoral system, and took part in the action against the government of Jair Bolsonaro, held on Avenida Paulista on 12 September. Barbosa, who participates in four groups with businessmen and leaders who want to take part in next year’s election debate, said in an interview state that the business world is now waking up for political debate.

What does Brazil need to do to restore its economy? Which reforms are most relevant?

The legal framework for basic sanitation is an important reform that has not always been highlighted. It has set universal targets for 2033 for the population for wastewater treatment and clean water. This is revolutionary. There have been positive developments, but in some the government has not accelerated. One of them is administrative reform. This must be done. It was a mistake that we didn’t. Let’s see if anything comes out of the tax reform before the end of the year.

Does business today have a more conservative or progressive view of the identity agenda?

Entrepreneurs and leaders have come to realize that society requires more interconnected actions with companies. Social integration topics are much more intertwined. Companies are working on their policies and are seeing how to eliminate the unconscious bias that prevents some people from being able to. Companies realized that a diverse group was better than a peer group. Society requires companies to take a stand on these issues. Entrepreneurs are much more involved with these topics, whether out of conviction or convenience.

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What should be the main topics of the pre-election debate in 2022?

There are two themes. It is very important to discuss the environmental issue. We have to position ourselves. As well as social inclusion with equal opportunities through education.

In your opinion, have organizations and business leaders taken a belated stance on the behavior of President Jair Bolsonaro?

This issue began to linger as the president became more active in his opposition to democracy. The business sector, which has rarely mobilized, has chosen to publicly voice its concerns. It was important to get back on your feet. I see the growing participation of society in politics. I see that more and more people want to run for public office. Bolsonaro’s statements changed the level of concern.

How do you see the pre-election debate?

I want people to vote because they believe, not because they are afraid. I see people voting out of fear. There are many opportunities for a focused agenda that awakens hope. The left has taken over a monopoly on public good discourse. I see that the most liberal people in the economic situation show social concerns. We want a better country. The path is a lesser state presence, giving more space to the private sector.

Do you believe in the third path in the 2022 election?

The definition of the PSDB, which will take place in November in the preview, will be very important for the start of the game. Neither Bolsonaro nor Lula want a third name. The candidate who has appeared now will receive many blows from both sides. The right time will be next year. You need one or two candidates from the center.

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Do you see your favorite name?

There is a place and time for growth (the third way). Without defining a PSDB preview, nothing will happen. From this point on, alliances will be made.

Information from the newspaper State of Sao Paulo.

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