The Faculty of Social Sciences of the University of Buenos Aires organized a virtual dialogue ‘Thinking about Latin America After the Pandemic’ on Friday 26 June, with guest participants Alberto Fernández, President of Argentina and the former Brazilian president Luis Ignacio Lula da Silva.
In his speech, Lula da Silva stressed the links he has with Argentina and remembered the times before the neo-liberal wave engulfed most of the region. ‘Together with a number of democratic leaders,’ he said, ‘we built a movement based on integrationist social policies’. He analysed the way in which the pandemic is battering his country under the government of Jair Bolsonaro and stressed that he remains hopeful that, in a not-too distant future, ‘democracy will enable investment in education and health, and cease to be an empresarial state’.
For his part, Argentine president Alberto Fernández, greeting Lula as ‘A giant not only for Brazil but for Latin America’, said ‘This pandemic has destroyed the capitlaist system as we know it: it has brought the functioning of the world economy to a stanstill. When men and women are contracting the infection, there is no version of capitalism that will work [to save them].’