Brazil's New Political Party: Green With A Shade Of Pirate

from the new-new-thing,-or-old-new-thing? dept

Techdirt has been following the rapid rise and current problems of the various Pirate Parties in Europe for some time. Both their success and difficulties flow in part from the fact that they do not fit neatly into the traditional political categories. This makes them attractive to those who are disenchanted with established parties, but also makes it hard for Pirate Parties to devise a coherent political program that they can seek to implement, for example through alliances with others.

An interesting question is whether the Pirate Party is a one-off, or part of a larger movement away from traditional party lines towards a different kind of politics -- specifically one that recognizes the central importance of the Internet in modern life. That's just been answered by the appearance of a new party in Brazil, as reported by Global Voices:

A former Brazilian presidential candidate and famous environmentalist is leading the charge for the creation of a new political party in the country, one that seeks to use the Internet as a tool for action on sustainability issues.

Former Brazilian Environment Minister Marina Silva officially launched her Sustainability Network in the capital Brasilia on 16 February, 2013, to a crowd of around 1,700 people, including supporters, founders and ideologues. The network aims to collect the required 500,000 signatures by September 2013 to become legally recognised as a political party.
What's interesting here is that the new party seems to draw on both traditional Green policies, with their emphasis on sustainability, and key ideas of the Net-based Pirate Party. For example, the idea of a network is central to the new party, as its name -- "Sustainability Network" -- makes clear. The party's manifesto (original pdf in Portuguese) expands on this aspect:
We believe that networks, as a means of aggregation and organization, are an invention of the present that bridges to a better future. The concept of a network is based on a democratic and egalitarian operation that seeks convergences in diversity. It is an instrument against the power of hierarchies that capture democratic institutions and, ironically, makes them their instrument of domination. For it is networked with society that we want to build a new political force, with alliances underpinned by an Ethics of Urgency, having as its aim the construction of a new model of development: sustainable, inclusive, egalitarian and diverse.
As the Global Voices article explains, like the Pirate Party in Europe, the new Sustainability Network is already coming under fire for its unusual platform. It will be interesting to see whether it can use the Internet to collect the signatures it needs in order to become a formal party -- and what happens afterwards.

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    Zakida Paul (profile), Mar 27th, 2013 @ 2:58am

    These parties will most likely never be anything more than a protest vote. Our entire political system is designed and set up so that the power will always go to those who can pay for it.

    What corporation is going to support a pirate party that is all about freedoms for us plebs?
    What corporation will support a green party who puts the environment ahead of big business?

    Political parties simply cannot get elected to power without the financial backing of the corporations and corporations will not support a political party that does not match up with their interests.

    Western democracy is such a sham.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Mar 27th, 2013 @ 3:15am

      Re:

      To be honest I think it's western voters who make it a sham.

      Many of us won't vote (laziness or actively not voting because we don't like any of the options), we tend to only vote for big parties as a rule because "Why bother if they're not going to get in" and we really don't do enough to force change (probably because we're ignored when we try but eh).

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Mar 27th, 2013 @ 3:27am

        Re: Re:

        I only vote for one of the UK's largest parties because the other parties in my area are racist bastards who I can't agree with on anything, and the largest two parties are full of self-interested douchenozzles in my area.

         

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        Zakida Paul (profile), Mar 27th, 2013 @ 3:28am

        Re: Re:

        History has made people lazy and/or apathetic. Decades of limited choice on the ballot paper, decades of major parties who in reality are no different than each other, decades of the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer, decades of the country being ruled for 1% rather than 100% of the population. I could go on but I am sure you get the point.

        It is understandable that people just think "fuck it, nothing will change anyway" when it comes to election time.

         

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      Ninja (profile), Mar 27th, 2013 @ 4:23am

      Re:

      Don't underestimate the power of protest. Last time she ran for President she amassed an amazing quantity of voters which were enough to put her in 3rd place and made her a political force the other candidates had to deal with. It's a shame she didn't use that momentum to fix some alliances and stuff. But then again she left the Green Party because it was infested with corrupt idiots (just like she did with PT - labor party - that she helped found and the party of our current president).

      I personally think some of her ideas and ways are somewhat utopic. However this may be precisely what we need. Once confronted with the realities of Government she will probably adapt and find new ways through the old. I'm not sure though. And our current president Dilma is somewhat doing it right in a few key aspects (while leaving very important things as the tax/political reforms on the sidelines).

      I'm fairly curious to see how things will be in 2014. The right wing party that was pretty traditional a while back is losing its grip in São Paulo state, their last stronghold, due to the same issues that are making people angry all over. However PT, the moderate left wing is also quite worn out from constant corruption scandals in the high positions. If she manages to get this party started (no pun intended) and gets enough support we may see some pretty interesting results in 2014. I do expect Dilma to be re-elected though.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 27th, 2013 @ 5:25am

    Marina Silva is known for having positions incompatible with the rights of minorities, due to her very close ties to extremist Christian-evangelic churches.

    I don't believe someone who doesn't believe in equal human rights for all can be a a banner-person to the pirate party ideologies. It saddens me that her announcement is nothing more than empty rhetoric aimed at hijacking the issues, and will only serve to weaken the slowly growing (but still not official) brazilian pirate party.

     

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      Ninja (profile), Mar 27th, 2013 @ 6:14am

      Re:

      Politics in Brazil has been too mixed with evangelic religions lately. And most of them (and the Catholics to an extent) want to impose their views on all the rest. Governments should be impartial and everybody should have the right to choose. The US is also suffering with all the fundamentalism.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Mar 28th, 2013 @ 5:20am

        Re: Re:

        I'd like to begin with that i hate EVERY SINGLE BRAZILIAN POLITICIAN WITH PASSION. They should all burn for eternity in the depths of Hades, but seriously, "Rights of Minorities"? I believe this is incorrect. You should say "Impositions of minorities". Most things that comes from you people are total bullshit. And most of it also goes against freedom of speech.

        We should allow you to say every shit you can think of, but when you hear shit you don't want you THINK you have every right to moan? Hypocrisy at its best, to say the least.

         

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    NaBUru38 (profile), Mar 27th, 2013 @ 6:08am

    Zakida, I don't know where you live, but the Brazilian Chamber of Deputies has proportional representation. That means, if you get X% of votes, you get X% of seats. So each vote counts. See here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brazilian_parliamentary_election,_2010

     

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      Zakida Paul (profile), Mar 27th, 2013 @ 7:25am

      Re:

      I live in the UK where we have a first past the post system. We had a referendum recently about the possibility of changing to proportional representation but the Tory "you're to stupid to understand" campaign won out in the end.

       

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    NaBUru38 (profile), Mar 27th, 2013 @ 6:48am

    I've read the manifest and I disagree radically with several of the proposals.

    In my opinion, politics is a team work, but they are anti-party. They propose independent candidates, but in reality you need a team that can do projects. By voting a single person, you don't know who's in the team. That's the point of parties: to vote for a team, where you know what they think and what they want to do, even if you don't know each member of the party.

    They mention "multi-center power", which I don't understand if it means decentralization (which we can discuss how much we want) or that some public decisions can be done by specific groups, excluding the rest of the citizens (that's happened here in Uruguay).

    They want to "democratize the media". Internet's here, what else do we need? They want to force media companies to break in pieces, when by clicking a web broswer theres gazillions of choices already.

    They want to impose quotas to each and every minority, like left-handed, fat people and the kind. That reinforces discrimination, not integrates people.

    They want "effective institutions of global governance". That sounds like imperialism to me. They are opposed to national sovereignty.

    Last but not least, the manifest never mentions freedom as a basic element of an ideal society. They say that society should be built collectively, in the sense majority decisions must be accepted by everyone. I think that the government shouldn't intervene in private matters, where people should be totally free, but only deal with public issues.

     

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    Suzanne Lainson (profile), Mar 27th, 2013 @ 9:54am

    Stay active

    I'm far more interested in sustainability as a whole than in a narrow focus on pirate party issues.

    I also tend not to vote for third parties because I worry that we'll get another Nader situation where votes are split and the candidate I don't want to win does.

    However, I do believe my vote counts so I do vote and will volunteer to support some issues/candidates.

    I think the most effective thing anyone can do is get involved at the local level. Not only can you have impact in your communities, you can elect politicians who will affect local, state, and national politics.

    What I like about where I live is that there is a lot of cohesiveness to enact lots of sustainable policies and community-building programs. We can create programs that, if successful, can be models elsewhere.

    I also recommend that people turn to the resources that are available including the P2P Foundation, On the Commons, Shareable, New Economics Institute, Institute for Local Self-Reliance, and so on.

     

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      Suzanne Lainson (profile), Mar 27th, 2013 @ 12:41pm

      Re: Stay active

      I'll add that the primary reason copyright isn't a BIG issue for me is that the push to eliminate it still strikes me as something to make Google's life easier. I don't see a direct connection to global warming, pollution, economic inequality, the high cost of health care, etc.

      It's important to me as a small part of a very big picture (creating a decentralized economic/political/power system) but not an issue where I'd be willing to put in time and money over other issues that matter to me more.

       

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    Marcos Souza, Mar 29th, 2013 @ 10:18pm

    PIRATES have nothing to do with Marina Silva

    The Pirate Party of Brazil has nothing to do with the party #REDE Sustentabilidade Marina Silva.

    The Pirate Party of Brazil was founded on July 28, 2012 in Recife, in the presence of Swedish Rick Falkvinge.

    http://falkvinge.net/2012/07/28/welcome-to-the-community-partido-pirata-do-brasil/

    To learn about the program from accessing the pirates in Brazil:
    http://partidopirata.org/documentos/programa/

     

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