Beginning to Explain the Ferment of Brazil’s Vinegar Revolt

Last post I briefly questioned why the Vinegar Revolt came to be. Protests still continue, and at one point last week over 80 major Brazilian urban centers coordinated massive marches – in Rio, close to half a million people turned out. These are the largest protests in Brazilian history and they signal a tectonic shift in Brazil’s political culture. It is an unbelievable time to be living in Brazil. Yesterday my buddy Chris Gaffney, a professor at the Universidade Federal Fluminense in Rio de Janeiro and author of the blog...

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Vinegar Revolt

This is what people are calling the protests that are causing general upheaval in Brazil. The question is, why would a country at near full employment, whose average per capita income has nearly double over the last ten years, take to the streets in protest? The answers are curiously unsatisfying. From bus fares, to egregious public spending on the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympics, to poor public services and corruption, the reasons for protests seem at once limitless and incoherent. What exactly is driving these protests? I’ll try...

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Update on the Performance of Brazil’s New Freedom of Information Law

Just a very brief update on Brazil‘s new Freedom of Information law (12.527), which took effect on May 16, 2012. During its first six and a half months of operation (2012-13), the federal government registered some 51,400 requests. The government claims to have answered approximately 95% of these requests. 4 of Brazil’s 27 states accounted for  approximately 60% of all requests. (São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Minas Gerais, and the Federal District). As of January 2013, 15 states had not yet regulated the FOI law, and it is clear...

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Analysis of delays of implementing freedom of information law in Brazil, commissioned by Folha de São Paulo – English translation is below pic.     When in November 2011 Brazil approved the right to access public information, it joined the ranks of more than 90 countries that respect the fundamental democratic rights of their citizens. All levels and branches of the Union were required to adopt regulation within six months, by May 16th 2012.  Many entities, however, did not comply. By international standards, this delay is...

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