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Government censorship in Portugal

por John Wolf, em 15.01.13

 

What´s going on in Portugal must be shared in plain english with the rest of the world. Austerity - a fiscal and economic recipe cooked up by a number of European governments to boost their failing economies is not working at all. The approach is flawed and the improvement the authorities promised is nowhere in sight. However, government officials have used the economic excuse to reshape the concept and structure of the Welfare State at the expense of its citizens. The National Health Service is only one of many examples of public services that have been maimed and the population is bearing the brunt. I´m not even going to mention the outrageous tax hikes that are torturing the workers that are lucky enough to still have a job and a lousy salary. Yet another phenomena is slowly but surely becoming pathological. The degree of control the Government is trying to exercise over the media and public opinion is worrisome. Messages of protest are now controlled as if Portugal were under a totalitarian regime. Some citizens I have spoken to, now regard the former dictator Salazar, as a bland authoritarian figure, when compared to the endeavors taken forth by the Passos Coelho and his center/center right coalition government. Part of the press and some tv channels are alligned with the government and there seems to be no limit regarding the fences that are being mounted. As I write this article, a conference on the Reform of the Portuguese State is taking place with a panel of well known experts, politicians and former leaders, but the Press has not been granted authorization to tape or record the event. The welcome address presented by former Social-Democrat Party director Sofia Galvão, made it clear that coverage of the event will not be tolerated, and only with permission may speakers messages be conveyed. We all know Portugal is a young Democracy that came to being with the Carnation Revolution of April 25th, 1974. But what´s going on seems like a clear reversal of the ideals embodied almost 40 years ago. Are we in Europe and are these the values and principles defended by the European Union? Let´s ask Portugal.

 

(CC International Media)

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publicado às 15:51






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