A question for Tales Ab'Sáber*

João Cezar de Castro Rocha – In your documentary Intervention, Love doesn't mean much, anticipated many of the horrors that today want to dominate the Brazilian scene. How can we understand that the delirium of conspiracy theories has become a political reality for tens of thousands of people?

Tales Ab'Saber – What can a work of culture, art or criticism do if its community refuses to see it, accept it, receive it? In fact, in 2016 we made this film, me, the filmmaker and professor at ECA USP Rubens Rewald and the editor and free journalist Gustavo Aranda. When I showed them, back in 2015, what was happening on the networks and chats of an extreme right that was organizing for a new way of warfare on the internet, they were very impressed and we started working immediately. We followed the entire process of Dilma's fall, until mid-2016, observing the life, action and “thought” of this delusional, violent and virulent “new” right, as it expanded in a contagious and widespread way on the networks. Its intensities, facilitations, simplistic paranoid logic and right to any lie, until reaching the strength of delusion, in this case the lie shared as a political desire – the film demonstrated – immensely facilitated the adherence of Brazilian social resentment and authoritarian ignorance to that world, a destructive affective, collective fictional world. Every political and technical fascist movement seeks to operate at the level of a psychic conversion: from the subject of the dream, mediated reason and the social contract, it passes to the group of delirium, the immediate fulfillment in desire and the passage to the act, the right to political violence, which is initially expressed as an act of language as shock. That right that was united every day by the affection of total war – what psychoanalysts, since the 1930s and 1940s, knew as the production of a schizo-paranoid psychic position, and which Freud named group dynamics in 1920 – had fundamental role in the historical case, by self-organizing in networks and given the right to free-for-all of all kinds, in fact criminal in a democracy. Its main method was the lie, social hyperbole, slander without limits, without charge or need for checking: the unpunished possession of the word, all done to call for the identification of a “new” people ready for anything, at least in symbol, or in the false symbol. During the period of the great national Lavajatist demonstrations called and mobilized by groups of the new so-called liberal right, in fact violently neoliberal and contrary to the social parameters of the 1988 Constitution, with the tacit and strategic support of the large communication networks and the political identification of their journalists so-called professionals with their desire for impeachment, that anything-goes right-wing, delirium and sadism of victory through lies – which they excitedly enjoyed – had around 15% of protesters on the streets, according to research at the time. They were those who went out with banners asking, crying out, demanding, they said in the film, a constitutional military intervention. In other words, a classic Brazilian coup, in which the armed forces take power and ruin democracy and life in the country. At the end of the process of degradation of the parameters of Brazilian politics, in 2018, the candidate who expressed things in terms of violence and anything goes of all kinds reached 58 million votes in Brazil... Today the Brazilian coup plotters, now led and guided by a grotesque fascist leader, with his office of professional hatred multiplied on the networks, which threatens us every week and every day with the worst of the worst, reached 30%: those who accept everything and anything for Bolsonaro, from the fake medicine to inflation , from global isolation to the preliminary destruction of fragile democracy, from the farcical coup based on nothing to the corruption and destruction of the State by true imbeciles. The film was at the root of this process, catching in full flight, or egg..., two fundamental dimensions of the new politics of the extreme right, neo-fascist, in Brazil: the system of fascist propaganda of a new cultural industry of lies and violence on the networks, and the fusion of such a material war machine with the war machine of desire, the lie/violence/delusion system that modulated it. Attracting the false morality of authoritarians, creating a unified voice for political ignorance, common images of a private war, gang war, digital militia, staged in the real time of desire, for them to live in the Brazil of their dreams, configured the nightmare that became Bolsonarism. If this movement happened as it did, and today we have studies of Brazilian neofascism and its system of representations, affections and signs in all Brazilian Universities, Intervention: Love doesn't mean much gave shape and concept to that psychopolitical process of another order regarding experience from Brazil, as you and a few other critics and intellectuals pointed out – I remember Laymert Garcia dos Santos, Ismail Xavier, Leandro Saraiva and the group of social linguists at UFSCAR, professors Luzmara Curcino and Carlos Piovezani… Studying the concrete movement of those masses on the networks , the element of irrationality and the desire for violence always stood out to anyone who wanted to see. However, there was very little interest in the film, when he was talking about all this alone, in 2016. A political film, made to intervene, produce, generate knowledge about what time it is and where we were, in front of which, half of the audience burst into tears and despair, and the other half refused as a principle the reality of what they saw, of a country that I didn't know about, but wanted to govern... So, after the evidence from the film and its research, we had to support some of the best minds in the country, already in 2018, saying that Bolsonaro would not win the election... and, among them, this was also the understanding of the Workers' Party about the political and social process we were experiencing. In other words, no understanding. A sad political movement, of inattention to one's own culture, alienation from the terms of popular life and embezzlement in particular ideas, from one's own self, that did not correspond to history. A certain conceptual bankruptcy, in our own field, the same one that Mano Brown denounced at the time at the fiscal dance party between the Democrats. The fascist delirium, evident, dangerous, easy and expansive, was completed in the negative hallucination of the left itself, which was doing its best in refusing to recognize what was happening in front of its face. And, if he saw it, when he saw it, he burst into tears, and not into thought, criticism and real strategy. That was the social fate of that film, quite revealing of something more than our foolish and impotent fixations. In Brazil, we experienced a war between two delusions, one positive and violent, the other negative and behind the times. The political history of this film is the history of a split culture, to some extent all of it schizophrenic.

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