In 2014, Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist party- BJP won our parliamentary elections with a record number of seats.
In 2016, Donald Trump led conservative Republican party came to power in the United States. In 2018, Vladimir Putin was re-elected, and there’s no sign of his leaving the office anytime soon.
In 2018, President Xi Jinping tightened his grip on power by scrapping the party’s constitution rule – that a president can only serve up to two terms.
And finally, this week Brazil elected Jair Bolsonaro; a far-right authoritarian style leader, as its new president.
Out of the five most powerful and populous countries of the world, three governments are now conservatives whose ideologies are mostly far right. Others seem to have already found the loophole in their democratic system. These five leaders will soon become a cornerstone in worlds’ progress. But all of them have a similar approach to policies, method of campaign, and much more that could potentially change the current human culture. It is worth noticing that the ideology and characteristics of any of these leaders can be connected to another.
Bolsonaro’s popularity gained momentum when former president and lead runner Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, was convicted to 12 years of prison in the operation car wash scandal; which in Brazil was as big as Richard Nixon’s Watergate scandal. Bolsonaro campaigned hard; placing corruption at his centre focus – just like Modi did in 2014. Brazilians elected Bolsonaro as they desperately wanted to replace the corrupt workers’ party – just the way Indians saw Modi as a hope to establish a corruption-free government.
Bolsonaro has stands that are similar to Trump and is often referred to as the ‘Donald Trump of Latin America’. His anti-immigrant stance and his sexism and misogyny relate him to Trump, and his favour to military rule connects him to China’s Xi-Jinping. Xi’s rule and raise to power have a great semblance to Putin, and both seem to have a cult-like personality among their followers.
Now what should scare us the most is that at least 3 out of 5 of these influential leaders have an anti-LGBTQ+ and anti-immigrant stance. They haven’t publicly raised their voice in support of climate change either. These leaders have authoritarian style regimes or cult-like characters and are suspected to have silenced the voice of journalists and activists who speak up against them. And above all, each of them has been called out as fascist. All these leaders in one way or another believe that a stable government means a long-lasting power; and in future, they might take any measures to stay in the office as long as they can. Unfortunately, similar campaigns and leaders are also on the rise in countries like Mexico, Italy and many other countries around Europe and Asia.
Conservative politics and anti-left leaders are winning and gaining their popularity in five of the most powerful countries in the 21st century. Right-wing politics is defeating liberal politics through conversations and campaigns focused on religion, caste, race and nationalism; and replacing discussions about cultural progress, jobs, economy, science and technology.
Using democratic political power, data, internet and surveillance the world is taking a “right” turn; but is it a right turn or does this road end somewhere else?