Jair, Bolsonaro, President, Brazil. Jair said that Covid -19 is nothing to fear and has not lockdown the country.  He refuses to wear a mask and mixes with crowds of admirers.  And while the virus has infected more than 200,000 people, he planned a huge barbeque party but cancelled it at the last minute only to go jet-skiing, laughing and smiling for the reporters.

When questioned about his actions or the example he was setting, he told reports to shit up.  Jair’s plan is to let the virus rip through the population until it infects 70% and confers herd immunity.  This while scientists warned him that such action would kill millions of Brazilians.  In Rio de Janeiro, the health care system has collapsed.  More than 1,000 people are waiting for beds.  The city recorded 1t5 death there in one day.

People are following the advice and example of the president.  While the country is mired in the devastation brought by the virus, Jair is enacting policies to placate his based.  He fired the environment minister who was fighting back against illegal gold mines and protecting forests from logging.  He increased the amount of ammunition a people could buy from 500 rounds to 6,000 rounds.  He has let the Rain Forest be decimated.  His country has become a threat to other Latin American countries.  Of the 67 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in Paraguay, 63 were due to traffic from Brazil

But all this should be no surprise to the people.  Jair was a captain of the death squads that acted extra-judiciously in killing elected officials and other who opposed his agenda. It has been said of him, “It is as if Brazil were being governed by a maniac.”

President Rodrigo Duterte, Philippines. Has been shutting down free press, choking off any voice that does not agree wit ha support his agenda.  The people believe they are one step form Martial Law.  The ABS-CBN network was shut down for not running Duterte’s campaign ads.   He has support extra-judicial killings, the shooting of suspected drug dealers on sight.  He has used the threat of tax investigations to shut down descent.  One paper said, “The assault on press freedom is clear and the chill of repression unmistakable.  He called the Pope a whore, bragged of raping women, and proud of killings 7,000 “suspected” drug dealers.

Vctor Orban, prime minister of Poland. After eight years in power, Prime Minister Orbán has chipped away at the foundations of Hungarian democracy. It has been replaced with an authoritarian regime that wields a cynical interpretation of the law as a weapon; regulations that can seem reasonable on their face but actually serve to undermine essential democratic freedoms.  Elections there are free, in the sense that the vote counts aren’t nakedly rigged. But they are unfair: The government controls the airwaves and media companies to such a degree that the opposition can’t get a fair hearing.  A patchwork of nonsensical regulations makes it nearly impossible for pro-democracy organizations to do their work. The economy seems to be growing, but a significant number of corporations are controlled by Orbán’s cronies.

An unending drumbeat of propaganda, from both official state outlets and the private media empires of Orbán allies, demonizes refugees and Muslims, warning of an existential threat to Hungarian society and culture — and touting the Orbán regime as the only thing protecting the country from an Islamic takeover. This trumped-up crisis serves as a pretext for the government to pass laws undermining its opponents.

We can only imagine how badly Donald Trump would like to get control of the media.  I can’t even guess what he would give for that power.  Many, given enough time (being reelected) we will find out of he’s learned enough from his role models to do just that.

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