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“The State is me”: Renan Calheiros takes revenge on those who dared to fight corruption

The idea was to get here today and write something light about the decision of the Federal Court of Auditors that, in the figure of Minister Bruno “Marionete do Renan Calheiros” Dantas, sentenced former prosecutor Deltan Dallagnol and former prosecutor general Janot to return R$2.8 million on account of alleged (and allegedly put it!) irregular expenses in Operação Lava Jato. But I doubt I can. First because it rains and it’s cold outside. Secondly, because there is nothing light in the image of a state controlled by the corrupt trampling and taking revenge on those who, somewhat naively, envisioned the possibility of making that same state a place less like a pigsty.

In an editorial, Gazeta do Povo says that the TCU had its day of infamy and that in just 5 seconds it achieved the feat of descending to the same level as the Federal Supreme Court, which annulled the proceedings against Lula. I disagree on one detail: even because of the institutional eccentricity that is the TCU (which, despite the “court” in the name, is an organ of the Legislature), the decision against Dallagnol and Janot is worse and more harmful, because its symbolic character is more enduring. And also because it shows the size of the power that a man like Renan Calheiros can have in an illogical and immoral structure such as that of the Brazilian State. We are at the mercy of these types of people. All.

In essence, the message that the TCU’s decision sends is of an almost inconceivable perversity: whoever dares to investigate and punish the corruption on which Leviathan feeds back will, sooner or later late, punished. And if there are no crimes, no problem. We’ll find a way and invent a crime for you. Travel expenses, for example. Where has a member of the Public Ministry ever been seen paying R$10 on an airport cheese bread! Maybe we even invented a crime for your relatives and friends. For your descendants! Don’t mess with us. Don’t try to play the hero. Here I am in charge. Or, at least, Renan Calheiros.

The patience and Machiavellianism of the senator from Alagoas, political godfather of minister Bruno Dantas, rapporteur of the case, draws attention in this imbroglio. If there is anyone in this world who understands the saying “revenge is a dish best served cold”, it is Renan Calheiros. That for decades has used the State to its own advantage, in successive coups in which cleverness prevails over any glimmer of virtue. And there are people who admire it!

By the way, this is a criticism of the entire Lava Jato task force, especially Deltan Dallagnol. A few years ago, I saw him giving an interview to the now-missing Jô Soares. During the conversation, Dallagnol insisted that corruption (in the most pecuniary sense of the term) was Brazil’s biggest problem. A problem that he set out to solve through the virtuous use of all those laws and codes and manuals that make positivists happy. My criticism, therefore, is this: before pecuniary corruption, that is, before someone wants to take financial advantage of the state’s always full coffers, there is always corruption of character – this, indeed, is Brazil’s biggest problem. And on which laws always have a very limited effect.

I have already written about this when dealing with criminality that corrupts the young people, forcing them to fight an illogical war in order to satisfy very basic desires. To buy a pair of sneakers, take the girl to the funk dance and, as a last resort, to live a very brief life full of intense pleasures. The same goes for the corrupt in a suit, tie and hair implant. In this case, the law and the police force were palliatives that even gave us hope on the mornings when Operation Lava Jato worked as a wake-up call for bandits. But cancer prevailed.

From now on, who will be the idiot (in the Dostoevskian sense of the term) who will dare to open a single case against a blatant case of corruption? (Taking advantage of the spirit of the times, it is worth asking who will be the idiot, still in the Dostoevskian sense of the term, who in the next elections, when faced with a wide-open possibility of fraud, will dare to report it to the authorities?). I just don’t answer the rhetorical question with a resounding and desperate “nobody” because we know that, if on the one hand the world is made up of a majority that celebrates the cleverness of a Renan Calheiros, on the other there will always be dreamers who, when trying to do the right thing , will be accused of messianism.

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