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The future is pledged – Opinion – Estadao

Jair Bolsonaro’s promise to grant amendments to civil servants who are part of his support base helps understand why the country is in the dire situation it is in and why it is unlikely to get out in such a short time. And in the medium term. With high inflation, persistent unemployment and slowing economic growth, the president saw fit to allocate R$1.7 billion from the budget to raise salaries for the federal security forces. Now, to avoid a general strike by civil servants, the government will be forced to open the safe. Estimation, as described by stadium, is that a 5% linear increase measure for all civil servants would require an additional R$6.3 billion reallocation, which would increase the need for a budget freeze to about R$14 billion. The account of this advantage will be divided between the poorest, who already face the daily hardships of poor quality public services, and the Brazil of the future, which, if dependent on the current administration, will be as bad as the present one.

In an election year, there will be no spending limits on parliamentary amendments, whether those of the House or the Rapporteur, the basis of the “secret budget”, a scheme revealed stadium Which ensures support from Congress to the executive branch. The cut will focus on R$8.6 billion in discretionary expenditures – financing and investment – for the ministries of health, education, science and technology. If there is something prevalent in government, it is Bolsonaro’s brutal candor about his priorities and world views, which he has never hidden throughout his political career.

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In January, when the budget was approved, the R$3.2 billion cut did not affect the parliamentary amendments or the electoral fund budget either. The goals of the scissors at the beginning of the year were similar – health, education, social assistance, human rights and the environment – and, in detail, revealed the nature of polisnarism. Among other things, funds have been blocked for the National Institute of Social Security (INSS), which is responsible for granting pensions and assistance benefits, basic education, university hospitals, combating deforestation, regulating indigenous lands, basic sanitation in Quilombola communities, and combating violence against women. .

But now the CEO has outdone himself as he prepares to cut R$2.9 billion from resources for science and technology. The bulk, R$2.6 billion, will affect the National Fund for Scientific and Technological Development (FNDCT), the country’s main public vehicle for financing the region. The shutdown is expected to paralyze at least 30 scientific programs, from studies on COVID-19 and combating neglected diseases to collaborations with space missions and research in Antarctica. After the denials that have marked the fight against the pandemic, it comes as no surprise that the Brazilian flag is in the government’s sights.

Cutting off the FNDCT exposes ignorance and retaliation, but also reveals real illegality, given that emergency funds from the fund were recently prohibited by law – something the Ministry of Science and Technology has not commented on. The Brazilian Society for the Advancement of Science (SBPC) protested in a note that “it is not possible to pursue the development of the country in an environment of apparent oppression of knowledge”.

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Science, technology and innovation are inseparable aspects of economic development, and in this specific sector, unlike infrastructure, private investment unfortunately will not be able to replace public support. There is no shortage of examples in the history of countries that bet on these areas and reap the rewards in reducing social inequalities. On the other hand, today Brazil reaffirms its preferential choice of narrow policies in the name of elections and encourages brain drain abroad. Worse than the more visible setbacks of recent years, which can still be reversed, Bolsonaro’s great legacy is leaving Brazil’s future without a thought.