The victory in the first Chilean electoral round of José Antonio Kast, the son of a former Nazi military man who, with his outbursts, competes face to face with Jair Bolsonaro, locates the problem of the extreme right in the region at a different level of dangerousness. “I do defend the work of the Military Government with pride,” says this supporter of the market, the cross and order. His disinhibition is part a phenomenon that in Latin America began in Brazil, just stepped into the Argentine capital with disconcerting force and now inserts Chile on the map of radicalism. Kast can be elected on December 19 president of a country that two years ago exploded in the air and in rejection of the neoliberal economic model. “If Pinochet were alive, he would vote for me“, has said.
What happened around a character who until recently was part of the gallery of eccentric politicians provokes perplexity on Chile. A good part of the center has no doubts in voting, even against its principles, in favor of the leftist Gabriel Boric, to avoid the scenario that is so feared. Dare Chile, it is called the Kast Government program. The thirty-third point is music to the ears of Santiago Abascal. To get to La Moneda Palace, Kast promises to advance the “International Anti-Radical Left Coordination “.
His growth at the polls has allowed this “unapologetic right” abandon all kinds of itching. Johannes Kaiser he has been elected deputy in Santiago for the Kast party. It is brother of Axel Kaiser, an author and youtuber who surpasses with his appreciations. “Women stop going to the park to run because they are afraid of immigrants who may rape them, but they continue to vote for the same parties that are bringing those people and you really wonder if the right to vote was a good idea,” she said. . As he could subtract votes from the leader in the second round, he decided to resign from Republicans but not from his seat.
Deniers of the dictatorship
Things are not very different on the other side of the Andes Mountains. At the moment, the Argentine extreme right is not fighting for the presidency. But in the last legislative elections, the economist and former heavy metal singer, Javier Milei, obtained 17% of the votes in the city of Buenos Aires. For Milei, global warming “is another of the lies of socialismTogether with him, Victoria Villarruel, a denier of the horrors of the last military dictatorship (1976-83). The economist José Luis Espert will also be a deputy, who, to resolve the insecurity issues, has proposed “to transform a couple of criminals into Gruyère cheese.”
This ideological turn is multi-causal for specialists. In fact, the recent poll by the Latin American Public Opinion Project, from Vanderbilt University, United States, on the acceptance of democracy in the region shows greater detachment than two years ago. A quarter of the inhabitants no longer believe that it is the best form of government. The call Barometer of the Americas highlights that skepticism is higher in Argentina, Peru and Bolivia. Young people are the most inclined to doubt the superiority of democracy as a space for solving conflicts in societies that are increasingly impoverished and with high levels of despair. The survey was conducted before the ghost of Kast surfaced.
That skepticism converges with another parallel phenomenon that the essayist Pablo Stefanoni in his book Did the rebellion turn to the right? Stefanoni, whose title had so much impact that it has just been published in Spain, tries to elucidate how anti-progressive and anti-political correctness have built a new common sense not to be taken lightly. In fact, his warnings came true with the rise of closet and Miliel. The left, he says, “was being largely dislocated from the historical image of disobedience and transgression that it expressed.” It has lost its ability to capitalize on social outrage. It is the “alternative rights”, once marginal, who “have been playing the radical card with speeches against the elites.” Stefanoni believes that to find a similar climate you have to go back to the 1920s and 1930s. The unanswered question at this time is how far can the Extremist wave that started in Brazil and threatens to flood Chile.