In Peru, anti-system and extremist groups -not a few of them have acted for years within the system to undermine it- have had as their supreme objective to “re-found” the country through a Constituent Assembly.
That was their constant illusion, what kept them awake at night. At the same time, they struggled to reach the central government. Some, of course, had managed to gain access to the sub-national governments (there, in regions and provinces, they broke the rules through tricks, set up trials of micro-dictatorships against political and journalistic antagonists, and the most careless ones even went to prison). Yet, the desire to project themselves politically towards the capital Lima, beyond the simple parliamentary seats, was patiently nurtured.
At this stage of the stressful Peruvian political process, it is obvious that the possibility of taking the governmental helm raises them one more rung on the ladder to the success of power that, then, would allow them to “remove everything” in order to “re-found everything.”
If they reach the Executive – and complementing their congressional and social base – the constituent effort to build a “new Constitution” will seek to establish itself as the major, superior conflict that will displace any other type of tension that might try to compete with it. Thus, driven by its ad hoc constitutionalists, its analysts and its pro-government press, it will distract a population urgently looking for a solution to the most immediate problems: the terrible health crisis surrounding the pandemic and the economic crisis.
What is more crucial today than these two national problems? Will the drafting of a “new Constitution”, in fact unnecessary, solve them discursively and magically? Not at all.
There may be some initial acts in the name of “social justice”. It is the first chapter of the pro-Bolivarian manual (Hugo Chávez even dictated a Law of Equal Opportunities), but it will be more cosmetic than truly liberating.
The plan is truly anti-liberal, profoundly statist within a “revolutionary” process. It is therefore the hegemonic power, the control of the power pattern, its concentration in the hands of the extreme left that moves them and will move them away from effective governance.
The confrontation, the fierce debates beforehand, if the famous “Constituent Assembly” is later materialized, will not only distract and cover up the enormous incompetence of public management, but, above all, the decentralized hyper-corruption of which the Peruvian taxpayer will be a victim (again, but in greater dimension).
In addition, the most dangerous thing: the advance of a vertical and progressive project of concentration of power, gradually authoritarian against the republican institutions and freedoms in general.
As the reader should know, “the lesser the freedoms, the lesser the sustainability of a successful government.” Poor Peru.