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Expectations and frustrations: what do Brazilians think about politics that have left the country.

In 2017, 21,236 people submitted to the IRS their final exit statements from Brazil. The number represents an increase of 160% compared to 2011, when 8,170 citizens decided to leave the country. The total grew gradually, year after year. The reasons for the changes vary: while some are motivated by practical issues such as firm-based transfers, others are driven by the hope of a better life abroad.
 
"We have seen a lot of disbelief, a lot of people completely disillusioned with Brazil's politics," says João Marques da Fonseca, president of EMDOC, a consulting firm specializing in Brazilian transfers abroad. According to Fonseca, not even the possibility of political and economic changes after the October elections this year are able to make these people rethink the exit of the country. "They think that anyone who joins the government will actually make matters worse, instead of improving," he adds.
 
The expert says that although the United States remains the main focus of those interested in leaving Brazil, Portugal has also been highly sought, mainly because of the language. He also points out that some Brazilians prefer to embark on a trip to Italy with the aim of guaranteeing European citizenship - in some cases, the document serves only as a means to more easily achieve the goal of living in the United States.
 
As well as the desired destinations, the profile of those who leave the country has also been changing. According to the president of EMDOC, in 2016, the company was hired by 75 people with graduate and good financial conditions who decided to move abroad. Already in 2017, the number of customers with this profile has risen to 230. "There is a great drain of skilled labor. We see mainly entrepreneurs who set up their businesses, made a profit and now decided to close the doors and leave, "he adds.
 
This was the case of the businessman Ivan Ortega (30). Last year, he sold his two bars on a busy street in São Caetano do Sul (SP) and four months ago, he lives in New York, where he works as a consultant for a new restaurant in Manhattan. "I was charmed by the city, the quality of life here is very good. You have security to walk the streets with your cell phone in hand, you can always be quiet, "he explains.
 
When asked about whether to return to Brazil, the businessman shows uncertainty. "If it was to start a good business, yes. Brazil is a good place to make money: people there like to boast and do not mind paying dearly for it. In that sense, it's very different here from the United States, where you have to charge lower prices or you can not sell, "he says.
 
Electoral issues
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs estimates that about three million four hundred thousand Brazilians are living abroad - the number may be even greater considering all those who are in an irregular migratory situation. Despite this, according to the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE), only 500,727 voters have transferred their title to the Electoral Zone Abroad, which allows voting in certain foreign territories. The deadline for requesting the timely transfer of the elections this year ended in May. Those who move out and continue with the same electoral domicile must justify all absences from the polls.
 
A resident of the city of Santiago, Chile, five years ago, digital marketing specialist Paula Vieira (37) has always opted for this second alternative. "If I think some candidate is worth it, I can ask to transfer my title, but that's not the case," he says. Natural of São José dos Campos, she decided to move definitively only months after knowing Santiago in a tourist trip. "I was very impressed with the organization of the city, which is modern, clean and safe," he says.
 
Today, Paula works in the marketing area of a large hotel chain - according to her, the job guarantees good quality of life even with the high costs of Santiago. The São Paulo still emphasizes that, despite perceiving problems in the country, she does not regret the decision. "Of course nothing is perfect. Here too there is crowded public transport, unemployment and corruption in politics, but on a much smaller scale than Brazil. I especially value the safety I feel here, "he explains.
 
Disappointments
But changing countries is no guarantee of satisfaction. After two and a half years living in Sydney, Australia, digital entrepreneur Amanda Roncato (36) came to the conclusion that life there did not meet her expectations, and she decided to return to Brazil. She had moved abroad in 2015, after suffering a lightning kidnapping in Sao Paulo.
 
"It always bothered me a lot to pay a fortune in taxes and not see return. I was kidnapped next to a mall at one-thirty in the afternoon, "he says. "I decided to go to Australia because I had already done an exchange for the United States, so I was looking for a different place where English was also spoken. I wanted to go back to live in a first world country. "
 
Amanda went to Sydney to take a technical course on tourism. When he arrived, however, he realized that the cost of living in the city was too high. So, in addition to studying, he had to work even during the weekends. The extensive list of jobs includes duties as a nanny, a tour of a zoo, a kitchen helper and a waitress. "I've done so much that I do not even remember anything else. I just know that they were all very heavy jobs, "he says.
 
In the end, it was precisely the efforts to get money that ended up costing her dearly: Amanda suffered a spinal injury that made her feel terrible pain. To alleviate the problem, he had to pay for three months of weekly sessions with a chiropractor - each consultation cost $ 60. Unable to work because of the injury and dissatisfied with the quality of the course she was doing, Amanda decided to return to Brazil. "I have found that Australia is a great place for the citizens there, who have access to the health system and various other benefits. For strangers, it's not easy. "
 
But her disappointment with her experience abroad has not made her more optimistic about Brazil. "I still think we pay a lot and get little. And I gave up on politics. I have decided that I will take my life in a way that is least affected by Brazil's politics, "she says, adding that she has grown up amidst controversy over politically active parents - who, according to her, have also lost interest theme in recent years.
 
Disbelief
According to Paulo Silvino Ribeiro, the sociologist and professor of the School of Sociology and Politics Foundation of São Paulo (FESPSP), the idea of being dissatisfied with the country and being able to leave it is exclusive to the Brazilian middle and upper classes, since such an attitude would be impossible to the less favored strata of society. But the sense of inferiority and the charm towards the foreigner is part of our national identity and is present in all social classes.
 
"This has to do with our idea of what Brazil is and what Brazilians are," he explains. "We always think we are at a disadvantage, being exploited, and that the famous 'Brazilian way' only exists here." For Paulo, the concept that Brazil is the "country of the future", so widespread since the Getulio Vargas administration in 1930, conveys the idea that at some point modernity will reach us - but this moment never seems to come .
 
According to the sociologist, this type of thinking is dangerous because it can induce false perceptions, which idealize life abroad. "The other countries also have problems, they also go through economic crises and have cases of corruption. Visiting a place as a tourist is totally different from the experience of living there, "he explains.
 
Still, according to him, the lack of trust in democratic institutions and people's sense of discouragement - triggered by actions of various rulers over time - are amplified by social networks where users feel at ease to share their afflictions . "We have the false impression that time goes by faster, we live in a climate of anxiety all the time."
 
The sociologist warns of the negative effects that this type of immediacy can cause in the current scenario, especially in the election season. For him, the desperation for change can contribute to the promotion of opportunistic applications. Politicians with radical visions take advantage of the desperate scenario by offering immediate solutions to complex problems - which is extremely dangerous.
 
"People need to understand that getting out of an economic crisis takes time, implementing public policy and having time-consuming results," says Silvino. "You have to be careful about promises of drastic measures, which disregard the complexity of the economy and do not take into account the racial and social disparity that exist in our country."
 

 

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