Tuesday, August 03, 2004

Interesting interview with the leader of the Workers Party (PT) in Congress, Arlindo Chinaglia in Brazzil this week (it's taken from the latest edition of the PT magazine, Teoria e Debate). Following on from the comments made by the PT rebel, Luciana Genro, who was in London the other week, and the disillusion felt by members on the party's left, it's quite a good counterbalance to her comments (here's my article about that meeting for those who missed it first time around).

"Don't you think we run the risk of repeating the same-old, historical experience of left wing parties which all went wrong, when they became the government the party changes into machinery of government and loses its autonomy?

"Any PT city mayor's speech sounds more like a PT message than
that of president of a local assembly. Do I believe we face risks? Yes I
think so. We are undergoing different historical moments but there is this
external factor.

"We have lived such an experience in SP, when Erundina was the mayor of
São Paulo. At that time the party had an attitude of being independent of the
government. And the government at the time used to say the municipal PT was in
opposition to the government. So we have had all kind of experiences in government-party relations. In the federal government, it would pose a serious lack of care for the PT to adopt an attitude of not being in solidarity with government.

"It is a difficult political operation to be loyal and have independence. Because the party has acquired a characteristic which is not good, it is difficult to have a closed meeting nowadays with the PT.

"Always someone lets the press know. I think this is not a crucial factor but it is irritating. It makes it difficult to have an open discussion because everything is made public. This, no doubt, limits the debate. It cannot be otherwise, or, instead of helping, we create more problems."

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