Brazilian Federal Constitution: Magna Carta or a Door Mat?


Tradução para ao inglês, do nosso artigo de hoje “Constituição Federal Brasileira: Carta Magna ou Tapete de Entrada?” ( feita pelo nosso amigo Clovis Lemes, da Candex USA, para entendimento de um amigo de trabalho nos EUA.

Amigo Clovis, muito obrigado pela gentileza, e permissão de publicação da sua tradução no meu blog, linkedin e twitter.


We all live knowing, or believing, that the Constitution was the highest law of a country. The one by which all other Laws are guided. And, of course, guiding rulers, citizens, institutions, etc., so that a country is governable and considered civilized.

When you look at the Constitution of the United States of America, for example, whose independence took place in 1776, you can see that it is still the only one made by them. It underwent some changes, but few, and remains unique.

The United Kingdom doesn’t even have a written constitution. Its Constitution is a set of laws and principles under which the Kingdom is governed. It is not made up of a single constitutional document, as usual. It is often said that the country has an “unwritten” constitution. Most of the British constitution exists in the written form of laws, case law, treaties, and conventions.

And so, it should or should be in all countries. But unfortunately, this is not what has happened in Brazil, which has already had several Constitutions. Always at the pleasure of government officials and congress on duty. Always subject to individual interests when it should be about general, collective interests.

It can be said that here one changes the Constitution as one changes a shirt. Or ruler. “I didn’t like it, I’ll change it”.

We have already had seven Constitutions, starting with the one of 1824. Then followed those of 1891, 1934, 1937, 1946, 1967, and 1988. This one of 1988 is slowly dying or has already died.

In the Empire time, we had only one, in 1824. Then, in bursts. That of 1891 was a justifiable change, since there was a change in the system of government, leaving the Empire for the Republic. A regrettable change, aggravated also by the way it happened, by the Brazilian tradition of fake news forever.

In the 20th century alone we had five Constitutions, and from 1934 to 1946 we had three in 12 years. Probably a world record. Another negative record, in which we are lavish.

How can a country have stability in this way? What is the confidence that its citizens can have in a country, which since always cannot be called a country because it is nothing more than a big encampment? And, with little possibility of being a nation, a country?

And now, although a National Constituent Assembly has not been convened, announced, or discussed, we already have a new Constitution since at least 2016, the eighth. Which is being “created” little by little.

Everyone will now ask themselves, what do you mean, what Constitution is this, who created it that no one knows, except this article writer?

Unfortunately, everyone knows it, accepts it, and is living under it, without any complaint or action. Except for a simple complaint from a few of the 213 million Brazilians. And, strangely, few jurists, which is, to say the least, very strange.

It was and is being created by the STF – Federal Supreme Court, which with the impeachment of President in 2016, they began to rewrite the 1988 Constitution themselves. It started by slicing it, maintaining the political rights that the Magna Carta, clearly, without any possibility of different interpretations, order to cancel. Unlike what happened in 1992, when the President at the time had his political rights revoked for eight years, as determined by our former 1988 Magna Carta.

And since then, when the STF became the only power in Brazil, legislating, executing, and even, in our spare time, “being creative judicially”, we already have another Constitution. And, in some ways, reminiscent of the UK one, which is not written. But ours is worthless.

The STF is legislating at will, rewriting, even by a single “judge”, not even by the collegiate. Now one, now the other. And, worse, they are not even judges, because we know that of the 11 ministers, only one is a judge, having passed a contest. The rest are just lawyers.

And all this, with the approval of Congress, which abdicated its duties, frightened, in which now, what seems to matter are only the position and salary. Even agreeing with censorship and imprisonment of their peers, without respect for the free expression guaranteed by the previous Constitution, that of 1988, which the majority still believe to be in force.

And these privileged and “anointed”, as they believe, are fast, executing, determining what the greatest figure in the country, the President of the Republic, should do or not do. And, exclusive prerogatives of the president, such as officers appointing, economic policy, tax reduction, infrastructure execution, travel, meetings, etc., etc., etc. And, in the same way, with the approval of Congress, jurists, the Brazilian people, etc. It is quite true that the President is to blame. He did not react, he let the STF begin to rule, without imposing himself, as he was the greatest figure in the country.

So, who can disagree that this new Constitution has been rewritten for at least six years? And only by one or a few people, who are not even elected in the country. They were not elected, and whose mission is unique, and constitutional, as it was from 1824 until the 1988 Constitution, dying since 2016. Just interpreting and judging the Constitution.

The Constitution has already been trampled in every possible way, even with official and personal media silenced. In other words, the old constitution of 1988 and what remains of it, was and is being treated as a door mat, where feet are wiped.

Will Brazil ever wake up, or will it continue in its deep sleep begun in 1492, 1822, or 1989?

Constituição Federal Brasileira: Carta Magna ou Tapete de Entrada?

Author: Samir Keedi

-Mestre (Stricto Sensu) e pós-graduado (Lato Sensu) em Administração pela UNIP-Universidade Paulista. -Bacharel em Economia pela PUC-Pontifícia Universidade Católica. -Profissional de comércio exterior desde março de 1972. -Especialista em transportes; logística; seguros; Incoterms®; carta de crédito e suas regras; documentos no comércio exterior; contratos internacionais de compra e venda. -Generalista em várias atividades em comércio exterior. -Consultor em diversos assuntos relativos ao comércio exterior. -Professor universitário de graduação e pós graduação desde 1996. -Professor e instrutor técnico desde 1996. -Palestrante em assuntos de comércio exterior e economia. -Colunista em jornais e revistas especializadas. -Autor de vários livros em comércio exterior. -Tradutor oficial para o Brasil do Incoterms 2000. -Representante do Brasil na CCI-RJ e Paris na revisão do Incoterms® 2010.

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