From Neymar to Batistuta: that football of the extreme right

The right has always been in favor of banks, companies, judges, the military, notaries, registrars, prosecutors, the media, the police, prisons. Now also football. In the 1960s, some thought that God had become a leftist after reading Sartre. False alarm. A few months ago, Bolsonaro presented himself at a rally like this: “I am Jair. I am a man. I am a father. I am catholic. I’m Brazilian. And no one steals that identity from me.” People who present themselves like this, with that sensitivity so close to the street, are very reassuring. They wanted to answer him: “A pleasure. How was the family?” The “identity” has become the main basis of the confrontation of our time. Such an abstract concept means that there are people who, faced with a presentation like this: “Hello, I’m Nacho, from Floresta, a chiropractor, and I like ravioli”, think: ‘oh, what an identity, let’s steal it!’

In this life that passes like a field mouse, without stirring the grass, according to Pound, “identity” is everything for the right and the extreme right. A few days ago Giorgia Meloni stated: “Everything that identifies us is being attacked.” The key to the rhetoric of the extreme right, with such obvious concepts, is that it speaks to people who believe that they are apolitical, that they are neither on the right nor on the left. Normal people, all life. Like Neymar, who declared in 2013, upon his arrival at Barcelona: “I don’t get involved in politics.” Today he has gotten into the “bars”. His unconditional support for Bolsonaro empties him of all enlightened thoughts willing to incinerate himself to obtain private privileges. His accession binds him to the supposed benefit that his father received for being exempt from paying a fine of 88 million reais (about 17 million dollars) for defrauding the treasury in the years 2011 and 2013.

The Liberal Party released a video in which the PSG player is shown with number 22, the official list, with a background song dedicated to Bolsonaro. What is illicit and suspicious becomes decent after the appropriate tax make-up. Those riches amassed in a facade legality, behind which hides the rugged and indomitable empire of economic gangsterism, all legitimized by ideologues of market neo-capitalism who make social Darwinism their doctrine.

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disillusion. Today’s football is right-wing. Like the banks, the judges, the prosecutors, the military, the companies, the notaries, the media, the police, the prisons. All together, in the “here and now”, of which Walter Benjamin spoke. Farmers, evaders, ranchers, speculators, producers, businessmen, tycoons, leaders. The ones from before and the ones from now. From Neymar to Batistuta, the list is too long. From this delirium derives the football of modernity. A factory of high-end soccer players, without a social conscience, refugees in a life with the price on the lapel, in tax evasion, in passivity and omission, chained to income and wealth inequalities. In that hedonistic individualism of the self-satisfaction of desires and the marketing of the self. This soccer of ours from my soul, with the viscera so exposed to the popular, and that few people build. That was born from scarcity, from hardship, with no more additives than hunger and imagination. A football that stops, and empties itself, like a living corpse, that expects nothing, demands nothing, and nothing makes it bleed.

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