(1931- ) Brazil
's president from 1995 to 2002. Easily elected in
democratic elections in 1994, after, as Finance minister from President
, he coordinated an economic plan to stabilize the
By them, in 1994, Cardoso managed to change Brazilian inflation
from a staggering exponential curve to a relatively stable coin, the Real, after
4 or five other plans by former ministers.
When he was elected, he should remain in office for 4 years, and
Brazil's constitution did not allow for reelection at the time. Under his
allies command in government, congress approved reelection for all executive
mandates in Brazil. Although legitimately approved by the congress, there is
strong suspicion in the country that some congressmen were bribed into
voting pro reelection by the time. Investigations on such congressmen were
closed inconclusively. He was them reelected in 1998, and is in office until
Cardoso belongs to the Brazillian Social Democratic Party PSDB,
which has few chances of electing his successor in the upcoming
He is a sociology PhD, by USP,
and was persecuted by the military during that regimen in Brazil (from
1964-1981), and belongs to a wealthy family of farmers.
During his mandate as president he acomplished many of called
"liberal" reforms on the State, with emphasys in privatising many
former services that were owned by the State, such as energy transmition,
telecommunications, some roads. Strong critics remain that in this process
the Stated got the debts from the companies sold, and financed the
buyers. As a result, much of the patrimony of the Brazilian State was
almost given away.
Whether such reforms were needed is a separate matter
from how the process was conducted. For instance, Brazilian #1 telecom,
former State owned EMBRATEL, was owned by Wordlcon during
2002 crisis, and were EMBRATEL is heading now is still uncertain.
Brazilian indicators of health, education, and wealth got a better under his
government, while the conditions did not get that better. More people got to
school, but to learn less. And the extra wealth went mostly to the richer.
Health was, in fact, improved. The major missing change on 8 years in office has
been a tributary reform.
This node is in no way a summary of his government, but I think it can
bring up some of the main political changes in Brazil recently, while exposing
a little of the problems usually overlooked by the mainstream press.