Michel Temer Is Sending Brazil Back To The Past

A woman stands in front of a phrase that reads "Out Temer" and poster with the image of Brazil's interim President Michel Tem
A woman stands in front of a phrase that reads "Out Temer" and poster with the image of Brazil's interim President Michel Temer at the bus stop during a protest against him and in support of suspended President Dilma Rousseff in Sao Paulo, Brazil, May 22, 2016. REUTERS/Nacho Doce

The traitors didn't see this coming. Only a few days after Michel Temer became Brazil's interim president -- following a coup that drastically tore our democracy apart -- the stock market fell and the Brazilian currency lost value against the dollar.

The people behind the coup are creating tragedy after tragedy, and the international community and media will surely acknowledge what's going on here.

Mr. Temer's first few decisions as acting president can tell us a lot about his intentions.

He shut down a good amount of ministries and offices that were intended to represent Brazilian society's diverse voices -- which have been historically neglected by our governments. For example, he shut down the ministry of women, racial equality and human rights.

In addition, he decided to slash the constitutionally-enshrined budgets of the health and education ministries -- which were a historic achievement of Brazil's social movements.

Ricardo Barros, the new minister of health, also provided another example of how the interim government will act against the public interest. He has suggested scaling back Brazil's universal health care system, to prioritize private healthcare companies. This mentality proves that we are regressing -- we are debating something that we overcame in the early '90s, during the transition from the presidency of Fernando Collor to the presidency of Fernando Henrique Cardoso.

The change proposed to the department tasked with pensions is also absurd -- they want to merge that office with the treasury department, to benefit the financial market and accelerate reforms on paper.

It is clear that the interim government is imposing an authoritarian agenda that counteracts the successful policies adopted by previous administrations.

This is the face of the illegitimate government. They have adopted an empty and misleading brand, based on the philosophy: "Work, don't complain." As if a slogan would generate new jobs, reduce the unemployment rate, and raise the income that our country needs. The insensitivity and lack of competence of this group is endless. They have seized power based on lies and rumors.

The most serious setback is the elimination of the ministry of culture -- a decision that Temer backtracked on following a public outcry. The irony is that the culture ministry was created in the 1980's by Celso Furtado, who belonged to Michel Temer's party, the PMDB. Without any dialogue with cultural groups in Brazil, Mr. Temer decided to dismantle a cornerstone of our democracy. It is clear that the interim government is imposing an authoritarian agenda that counteracts the successful policies adopted by previous administrations.

The people have rapidly responded. Protests have spread throughout the ministry of culture's public buildings across the country, showing that there will be no truce with those who have overthrown democracy in Brazil.

Gradually, Mr. Temer will realize that his government will not rule and that society will not allow all these lies to go unpunished. There is a great social cauldron about to explode.

This post first appeared on HuffPost Brazil. It has been translated into English and edited for clarity.