- Posted May 8, 2014 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Photo essays: Your stories in pictures
The Fifa World Cup Riots
In 2013, students started protests against bus fares in Sao Paolo, Brazil. Suddenly the riots spread over all the country, groups and subjects: health, education, taxes, corruption, political reform, world cup expenses. Teachers, students, businesses, public servants, started protesting. Some of them clashing with the police and even with the press and politicians that were accused of holding the status quo. Several deaths were reported and the Congress in Brasilia was beleaguered for days. Analysts are predicting that protests will be bigger and more violent at the world cup.
The government response was fragile as our country is taken by unscrupulous politicians; our congress is dominated by corporatism: We are living in the country of the long lines, highest taxes, scarcity and violence!
Here the banks charge the highest interest rates in the world.
Our cars prices are three times the price charged abroad.
Doctors working at public hospitals charges private fees and our doctor index per inhabitant are worse than countries like Mexico, Libya or Serbia.
TV channels and radios are few because to open a network, beyond the money, you will have to ask permission to the senate!
The violence in Brazil is pandemic; accordingly to UNODC, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime statistics, Brazil has the highest absolute number of homicides, sided by India that has six times our population. Here, beyond the Federal Police, we have two polices corporations at the streets, and they don’t match each other most of the time. The police’s officers in chief of the military and civil police, despite proposals, do not agree with the unification fearing loss of command and position. When a crime is solved, a thing not so common to happen, our penal system will not penalize the perpetrator or the penalty will be too lenient, e.g. for a first degree murder, the murderer could take only a 6 year sentence and be out in a sixth of that time.
The political system is doomed and only if you have big money you can enter it. The two major political parties PT and PSDB uses the government machine, federal or in the states respectively, for they own benefit filling major positions with their allies. For the poor people, they gave them the so called “bolsa família”, a free payment per month instead of give them good education or work opportunities. Some states like Minas Gerais increased the state taxes, created several tariffs penalizing the middle class and the businesses. The taxes there are the most high in the country e.g. gasoline 27% ICMS - the state tax and 4% IPVA - the vehicle tax paid per year. Due to that, last year Minas Gerais lost one more position in the GDP per capita index, now for Mato Grosso do Sul. Nevertheless, the former governor, now a senate member and a presidential candidate holds high approval in a political ambiance with compulsory vote and high percentage of functional illiterates and if you dare to publish something against him you’ll be fired right away. Our political system only attracts professional’s politics, persons that never really worked, right or left wing - they’re the same. Their goal is maintain this draining cycle: alms for the poor, high interest rates for the banks and always increasing taxes for the middle class and businesses. Ayn Rand ideas are dead here.
Finally, besides being Fifa World Cup Champions five times, we are taxes champions. Here we have the most high and complex tribute system in the world: federal, state, municipality taxes and several another tributes. Brazil Ranked Most Time-Consuming Tax Regime in the World in a comparison of tax systems in 189 economies worldwide, here a company Spend 2,600 Hours per Year Complying with the Brazilian Tax Code accordingly to the World Bank. If a company in a state like Ceará imports a good from China, the interstate taxes will be full collected at the state, but if it import a product from another Brazilian state, the “internal” exporter will charge a part of the interstate taxes. Then if Ceará imports from China, it will receive more taxes than if it “imports” from Sao Paolo.
How in the world a country like this could grow and give some quality of life for its citizens?
Will the riots work? I do not think so, or yes, but only if they break the system to the ground or the corporatists, which dominate our country, feels that it is better to let the country grow than sink. I hope that someday Brazil will be a better place to live, maybe in the next century.