[09/28/2007] International Herald Tribune: Interview with President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva of Brazil

CHARLIE ROSE: What do you say to those critics on the left who say you have not been as -- you have not accomplished their agenda, you have not been forceful on their side? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): For example, just for you to understand, for almost 30 years in my life, I did the following speech. I will go and undertake land, agrarian development reform, radical, under the workers' control. To implement land reform under the workers' control. And then they told me the following, "Well, President, Mr. President, instead of saying broad and radical land reform, with all the rage that you are saying in your speech, why don't you say, I will undertake land reform on a grand development in a peaceful way, through peaceful means? Isn't it much better to do it this way?" Yes, it is. And with the nuances like that, we prepared a program with less objectives, with things that are much more concrete, and we managed to win the elections... Transcript: Charlie Rose interviews President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva of Brazil. Friday, September 28, 2007 September 26, 2007 CHARLIE ROSE: Welcome to the broadcast. Tonight the president of Brazil, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva. CHARLIE ROSE: What is it that you want President Bush and his successor to understand about Brazil in 2008? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA, PRESIDENT OF BRAZIL (through translator): Well, I believe much more than just for Brazil. I would like that the U.S. would have a more proactive policy and more active policy for the Southern American countries, especially for the smaller countries in South America. If we do not give a chance, an opportunity to these countries to make them grow economically speaking, to create jobs for these countries, smaller countries in South America, what will these people do in their lives? CHARLIE ROSE: The president of Brazil, Lula da Silva, for the hour, next. CHARLIE ROSE: Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has been the president of Brazil since 2003. His country is Latin America's largest and most influential. As the world's ninth biggest economy and largest producer of ethanol, Brazil has become a major force. Lula also has an inspiring personal story. He made history by becoming the first working-class leader of the world's fourth biggest democracy. We talked yesterday during his visit to the United Nations General Assembly. CHARLIE ROSE: Tell me what you hope to accomplish here. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Well, the bottom line is that when we are in politics, what we expect to accomplish in each trip that we go is to try to close the ties even more, and try to build a trust relationship that, in politics, really matters. Confidence and trust relationship in politics is a sine qua non condition for the success of the political activity. And I came here for a dinner last night that I considered very important, because it was for the first time that we raised the discussion on climate change, and we took that discussion to the major leaders in the world. Because up until then, this was an issue that was being discussed only by experts. So now, the top leaders in the world attended this dinner. We had Angela Merkel, Bush, Zapatero, Sacrchese (ph), Mbeki, myself, president of Indonesia, the Russian minister, the Chinese foreign affairs minister, the prime minister from Japan. So I believe it was an extremely important meeting that we had last night. We haven't reached an agreement, of course, on that issue. There is a lot of divergence and there is not much in agreement. CHARLIE ROSE: But it's more about what to do than the nature of the problem? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Yes, I believe that it's both things. Everybody understands that we have a very serious issue with global warming of the planet. No one wants to put the blame on, or everybody wants to be playing the innocent, and no one wants the blame on, but we have to have the courage to discuss some things that are very important. For example, the industrial development standard of each country and the consumption standard of each society. That is to say, it's necessary that the human beings should diminish their impetus so that we can preserve more the raw materials that are produced by nature. And so that more and more, we can make the world less degraded (ph). And so it's a very complicated conversation, because when the greenhouse effect goes to the atmosphere, the gases, there is no border line. There is no boundary. I don't know if the American gas -- if the gas is American or Brazilian. I don't know if it's Chinese or Argentinean. It's in the air, and the fact of the matter is that it's causing a problem. The changes that we see in nature are visible every year. The phenomenon repeats, and even in its much more severe way. So I believe that Earth, that has already given us so many things, deserves that we should stop and think a little bit. And so, we should think about what we should do with the Earth, to take it more seriously and more carefully as if it was something that belonged to us. Administer it through collective interest and public interest, that's how should we deal with Earth. CHARLIE ROSE: What's the first step? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Well, the first step is to detect, to find out what could be done in a collective way. We're going to have a meeting in Indonesia at the end of this year, and in this meeting in Indonesia, we will try to find a way, a map that could guide all the countries. And then afterwards, each country will try to take care of their own things, domestically speaking, because it's always a very difficult problem, because the rich countries are the ones that emit more greenhouse effect gases, so they -- we have to think about what they have to do. And the poor countries, they have to combine the preservation of the environment with economic growth, which -- because behind that, there is a great extreme poverty. In the Brazilian Amazon rain forest, we have 360 million hectares in the legal (ph) region of the Amazon, but on the legal Amazon lives 22 million inhabitants, or a little bit more. And these are poor people that live in the rain forest. They want to work at jobs, and they want to survive with dignity. So, how can we make compatible development of a region like this one in the Amazon with giving access to people, to jobs, to salaries, and to material goods that they are entitled to have access? So this is the challenge that we face. And I believe that we do have the conditions -- all countries have -- with a little bit of political determination, where we can resolve the problem. CHARLIE ROSE: But does it have to be a tradeoff? If you get jobs, or you get a clean environment? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Well, we made a proposal in Nairobi -- it's a proposal that was made by Brazil last year -- that the rich countries should have to approve a compensatory fund for those countries that would manage to diminish the deforestation. For example, in the last 30 years, with the introduction of ethanol in the Brazilian blended -- in the Brazilian gasoline, we are already not going into the atmosphere 343 million tons of gases of greenhouse effect. So due to the deforestation that we are managing to diminish in the rain forests of the Amazon, we managed to avoid, up until now, another 440 million tons of CO2. So we intend to reach the end of the year to 500 million tons. So this sacrifice that Brazil has undertaken to preserve its rain forest in the Amazon needs to have some financial compensation or tradeoff, so that you can have a development model that is a clean development model, so that you can generate opportunities for jobs for those people that live under that situation. Because otherwise, they will be motivated to cut down trees, to sell the wood, and the lumber. Who are they going to sell the lumber to? They're going to sell it to the rich countries. So I believe that all of us, from this meeting that we had in Bali at the end of the year, we can find the roadmap where we can show to the world -- announce to the world that we'll be more responsible, taking care of something that God gave to us. CHARLIE ROSE: You had a bilateral meeting with President Bush. Bilateral meeting. Is he responsive to your experience with ethanol? And is he prepared to recommend that ethanol be imported into the United States without a tariff? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Well, I believe that he is still prepared to convince the corn producers, the corn farmers here in the U.S. to produce ethanol, but he's not yet well prepared to reduce a tariff of 54 percent that is put over the Brazilian ethanol, but this is a process. This is a work in progress. It's a convincing process. It's a process that people should understand the reality and start to perceive that the introduction of ethanol in the imaging matrix in the few area is a good for humanity. The European Union has decided until the year 2020 to introduce or to blend 10 percent of ethanol or bio-fuels in their fossil fuel. And in the U.S., that's certainly has the largest car fleet in the world, will also have to introduce, or to blend. Or they'll do it domestically, or will have to purchase it from Brazil, or will buy it from African countries, or will have to buy it from Latin American countries. When I thought about the bio-fuels, actually, I was imagining that that would be the opportunity for us to have a reparation -- reparation from the rich countries, and the developing countries could have this reparations with the less developed countries, the poorest countries of Africa, the Caribbean region, countries that did not have a good opportunity in the 20th century and that now could have some -- a better opportunity in the 21st century. Well, we should think more thoroughly, that first to find oil in deep waters, a platform of 200,000 barrels a day costs $2 billion. So it's necessary to have highly skilled labor force to prospect oil in offshore platforms. And when you build the platform, the offshore, you generate -- you create 6,000 jobs, 7,000 jobs, and then after that offshore platform is working, you're going to create less jobs. Now, it's necessary to have a lot of technological knowledge to do that, to build an offshore platform. Brazil has that technology. We mastered that. We're self-reliant in oil production. PetroBrazil, the state oil enterprise, is the company that has more technology into prospect -- explore oil in deep waters. And so, can't you imagine that that is something fantastic? A citizen in any part of the world, he can be illiterate; he, with his own hands, he can dig a small hole and grow an oil seed, and from that oil seed, he will have the fuel for his car. Without creating any implication with that, just -- and so, the thing is that the rich countries today import oil from the very few countries that do have oil. There is also the possibility of the rich countries who import ethanol and biodiesel from the poor countries that are going to use part of their lands to plant, to grow bio-fuels. So it's with this enthusiasm that I am passionate for the change in the energy matrix. CHARLIE ROSE: OK, but did you notice any change in President Bush's attitude? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): I did. I did. I feel that President Bush is now more flexible, and since the visit he made to Brazil last year, and then this year again, and the conversations that we have had during this period of our term, I feel that President Bush is much more flexible now, is much more willing to discuss it now. Now, there is something that is the American dimension. This is a huge country, a large country, a very rich country that masters a lot of technology and controls a lot of technology. So I believe that in the first moment, it's very natural that the U.S. would like to produce ethanol within the U.S. boundaries. On my side, I believe that the sovereignty of each country is untouchable. Each country is entitled to their sovereignty, and sovereign decisions are untouchable. But on the other hand, I believe that it is a mistake to try to produce ethanol from corn. I believe it's a mistake. Why so? Because corn is the basic animal food for many animals that are being raised to breed by the human beings, and it could make it very expensive, the price of the corn for all the rest of the world. The corn prices could go up, and above all, it could make unfeasible the purchase of meat, because of the corn price, especially for those countries like Mexico and from Central America that eat a lot of tortillas. And so they're going to suffer the consequences. And then, another important thing is that ethanol produced from sugarcane, it's cheaper than the ethanol that is produced from corn. We're just beginning the process. And let's see what happens in the next years. What I would like to ask God is that we could manage not only the Americans and Brazilians, but all the world to take it seriously, this issue of building a new energy matrix in the fuel area. Because after all, it's not my car that's in need for that kind of fuel, it's the world and the planet that are in need to be more careful with Earth and the planet. CHARLIE ROSE: All right. I want to come back to the environment, but let me just talk about Brazil today. You're at the United Nations. You spoke there yesterday. Do you expect to get a seat on the Security Council? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): I believe that it's a necessity. I said to President Bush, and I have said to President Hu Jintao from China, and the prime minister, the chancellor, Angela Merkel and President Sarkozy, it's a mistake to continue with the U.N. functioning in the same standard when it was created 60 years ago. Let's look to the geography of the world today, and we will see that the world has changed. Could you imagine that Russia today is smaller than it was before the revolution in 1917? That is to say, so why should we keep a certain group of privileged countries that are the permanent members of the U.N. Security Council -- why should we keep the veto right if we want that the U.N. should truly represent, with dignity and properly, the interests of the countries of all the world? We should democratize the U.N. CHARLIE ROSE: But people are in favor of that. The question is who gets on the Security Council and who is prepared to vote for Brazil. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): The people are prepared, I would say more or less. Why so? Because everybody -- I'm favorable, yes, I'm favorable. But for example, China. China doesn't want Japan to join in. CHARLIE ROSE: Right. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Italy, they don't want Germany to go in. So there are other countries that are jealous of Brazil. So who is going to join the U.N. Security Council? Is it going to be Brazil, Mexico, Argentina? Who is going to come from Africa? Is it going to be South Africa, it's going to be Nigeria, will it be Algeria? And what about Egypt? Well, oh, my God. First of all, we have to prove that we will democratize the Council, the U.N. Security Council. Then we'll discuss which countries should join the council. The fact of the matter is that the world needs to be better represented at the U.N., and this is very important for the U.S and it's important for Brazil. It's important for the U.S. because the U.S. should not show as being the largest economy in the world, the country that has the morals or arm potential in the world, with all the responsibility over its shoulders. And this will -- then the U.S. will be able to share with the other countries this responsibility of being part of military might. That's why I am confident. I had a meeting with President Sarkozy, and he publicly has stated that he will use it as the priority (inaudible) for the French government the democratization of the U.N. Security Council and the increase of the number of seats of the permanent members of that Council, and even he would advocate for Brazil. CHARLIE ROSE: He will advocate for Brazil? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): I believe that even President Bush and any future American administration should also advocate for Brazil, because of the importance that Brazil has for Latin America, because of the track record that Brazil has for advocating for peace. Brazil is a country that is in favor of peace. We're a peaceful country, Brazil. We -- we give priority for peace policies. So I believe that it would be very important for Brazil to participate. CHARLIE ROSE: Do you feel that Latin America has gotten short-shrift from the world? We went from a Euro-centric, America-centric world to everybody talking about Asia, but not Latin America. Has Latin America been ignored? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Well, let me tell you a story. I believe... CHARLIE ROSE: I like stories. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): I believe that for a while, we had in Latin America a political elite that was looking much more towards the U.S. And more towards to the European Union and less to within. Now, we have discovered ourselves as a continent, and so that's why Brazil is working to strengthen the Mercosur block, together with Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay, and that's why Brazil is participating in the creation in the Unasur (ph), which is the integration of all South America, and that's why we are strengthening the need for countries like the U.S. to have an active policy towards Latin America and South America. But Europe should also have a proactive and active policy for South America and Latin America. So if you want peace, if you want development, we need to look and see the relationship there between Latin America and the rest of the world. We cannot only be locked within our own boundaries and our own province. And Brazil has made a decision. We created the G-20. We created the G-4. Why so? Because we want to have influence in the political decisions that are made around the world. It is not fair that half a dozen countries will gather -- what is the meaning of a G-8 meeting today without Brazil participating, without China, without India, without South Africa? None. CHARLIE ROSE: Without the largest economies in the world. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Not only because we are major economies, but also because we represent a huge parcel of population, a huge population, and we do have interference -- we have something to say in the regional policy level. It is possible, then -- it is possible -- is it possible to imagine that anything that happens in the world of trade today, without China -- can you imagine that, China not participating in world trade? CHARLIE ROSE: No. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Without India? CHARLIE ROSE: No. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): It's not possible. Without Brazil? So that's why I believe we should have an evolution in the mind-set of the leaders of the world today, and we should change the standards. CHARLIE ROSE: You have access to the world leaders. Are they responsive to the argument you make? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): I believe that, yes, they respond well. Let me tell you something. The last G-8 meeting that was held in Germany, we had the G-5 meeting, in a separate meeting, and I talked to Prime Minister Singh from India, and I also talked to President Hu Jintao from China and President Mbeki from South Africa and also said to President Calderon from Mexico that we will not participate anymore in any future G-8 meetings in the same way that we're being invited now to participate. And then I went to Berlin, and I said in the meeting that it was meaningless for us to be invited for lunch only at the G-8 meetings and nothing more than that. The decisions were all made already. CHARLIE ROSE: Yeah. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Now they're going to have the next meeting of the G-8 will be in Tokyo. The next G-8 meeting will be in Tokyo. If I just go there for a lunch, it will be a very expensive lunch to attend. CHARLIE ROSE: So are you going to say no? Keep your lunch? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): It would be -- the restaurant that I went to that is the most far away from my house. So obviously, that we will accept the invitation, because we want to show how much we appreciate those. It's not elegant, our friends invite you to a dinner and you say no to the invitation. But there are political implications to that. It is necessary to change the rationale of the G-8 meetings. It's not any more eight countries that determine the rationale of the world economy today. It's not any more the G-8 that determines the world trade rationale. Look at the potential that is there of the countries that I mentioned to you, and you will perceive that logic would be to have G-8 plus G-5, maybe it would be G-14 more. CHARLIE ROSE: Let me just say to you, as a political person -- you came to the presidency in an unlikely path. Tell me what you have learned about the exercise of power. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): A long time ago, I didn't even have the intention to run for politics, or to run for a post, because my life is, I would say, there is a lot of contradiction in my life. On one hand, I didn't enjoy politics. I didn't enjoy people that enjoyed politics. I never thought that I would run for any office. I never thought to be affiliated to -- a member of a political party. And suddenly, all that happened in my life. And I remember that, in 1978, I was reelected the president of the local metal workers trade union of the Sombernado (ph), an industrial city near Sao Paulo, and I promised to my wife that would be my last term, that I would go back to an ordinary life with her. That was in 1978. Now, we're in 2007. That is to say, almost 30 years after that. And there is no way that I could go back to ordinary life. I believe that the fact that I reached the presidency of the republic was one of those phenomena that sociology did not foresee. A country the size of Brazil, it would -- it was against the odds, and it would be unpredictable that a metal worker could get out of a plant -- plant work and become the president of the country. CHARLIE ROSE: Did you feel like you were equipped for the job when you occupied the office? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Well, today, I can say thank God that I was not elected in 1989. Why so? Why do I say thank God? Maybe it's not the best term. It's because I believe that 12 years of waiting to be elected, I got very well prepared for that. So when I reached the presidency, I felt prepared to exercise power. I already had met all the previous presidents that came to office before me. I was acquainted with them. And maybe we can have people that can -- can match, or people that have much more educational background, but to govern is not that. To rule is to know how to make decisions, to govern is to define what are the priorities. To govern is to exercise the role of the state, to govern without keeping the freedom of enterprise, and to govern is to define for who the government or state should govern to. And I always felt that I was prepared for that. Of course, that between feeling that I was prepared and to exercise the government, to be in government, that's a quite different matter. So I believe that I learned a lot in the first 4.5 years of my term, and I do have the -- every day I am humble to say that I learn every day. I believe in that. The other day they asked me how I felt, and I said "I am a permanent metamorphosis." I'm learning. Every day I learn something. And I believe that God, when made the human being with just one mouth and two ears, it's for us to listen a little bit more than to talk. And I believe that I'm a good listener. I listen a lot. I talk a lot. And I learn a lot. And then I start executing. CHARLIE ROSE: What do you say to those critics on the left who say you have not been as -- you have not accomplished their agenda, you have not been forceful on their side? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Let me tell you something. I was a man that had a great activism in labor issues -- in the labor movement, and I could say that during a while, I was the major -- the main labor leader in the country. After that, I created the most important left-wing political party in Latin America, and in 20 years, we reached the presidency of the country. In this trajectory of time, some people can't manage to go up that ladder of the time, and other people that are assuming more responsibility and are reaching higher steps of that ladder, they work according to the concrete, objective reality that they face. When we are in the opposition, we can do politics with philosophy. Now, when you win the elections, you do politics governing. You're in a ruling, and the decisions on the national budget, for example, is it going to give more money to one ministry, to another or department, you can't call a plebiscite or a referendum from the party to decide that. You have to make that decision on your own. Sometimes, I have to make a decision on the international arena, and my cabinet minister (inaudible) me. We have to make that decision on the spot. So I believe that we did fulfill our program, and we did even more than that -- our platform. It's important to remember that for me to win the elections, we have to make -- to become more flexible. I had to make certain concessions that -- of things that I believed all my life. For example, just for you to understand, for almost 30 years in my life, I did the following speech. I will go and undertake land, agrarian development reform, radical, under the workers' control. To implement land reform under the workers' control. And then they told me the following, "Well, President, Mr. President, instead of saying broad and radical land reform, with all the rage that you are saying in your speech, why don't you say, I will undertake land reform on a grand development in a peaceful way, through peaceful means? Isn't it much better to do it this way?" Yes, it is. And with the nuances like that, we prepared a program with less objectives, with things that are much more concrete, and we managed to win the elections. There are certain left-wing sectors that don't agree with us, because for us to reach the moment that we're experiencing today in Brazil, we made many sacrifices in the year 2003. We had to cut, even on our skin, as we say, so that we can survive, because inflation was... CHARLIE ROSE: The economy -- right, right. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): ... was growing. Brazil had no credibility at the international level, lost international credibility. We owed $60 billion to the IMF. And what did we do? I did as I used to do in my house when I got my paycheck. CHARLIE ROSE: Budget. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): When I worked as a plant worker, I got back home with my salary, and I would open the paycheck in a closed envelope. How much do we owe? We pay all our debts. How much is left? What can we do with the money that is left? So let's use money for the transportation. Leave something for the kids. And so if nothing is left, well, what can we do? The government, we did the same thing in terms of our spending. If you want to restore the economy, to grow back, we cannot leave inflation to come back for inflation. We have to control inflation by all means. So what are we experiencing today in Brazil? CHARLIE ROSE: Exactly. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): We don't owe any money to the IMF, International Monetary Fund. We don't owe money anymore to the Paris Club. We have $163 billion in reserves -- international reserves. More than the U.S., even. And so, we have an inflation that is under control, that is 4 percent a year -- or 3.7 percent a year, Brazil. We have growth in the 7.2 percent in the (inaudible). Jobs. We have more jobs now that were created. So the employment went up. So this means that we managed to combine the growth policy for our exports, but strengthening at the same time the domestic market, where our exports grew but our domestic market -- we managed to combine inflation control with economic growth and creating new jobs, and income distribution. And so, we're still far away to give to the Brazilian people the standard of living that they deserve. But the basis -- the pillars are now in place, so that Brazil can transform itself in a major world economy. CHARLIE ROSE: Lots of countries face the challenge you do. China and India, members of the BRIC -- economic growth is there but they've got huge problems. Do the people of Brazil have the patience to wait for you to deliver on what you would like to from your heart? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): I don't want them to have patience. I want them -- they should demand more and more from me, from the government. CHARLIE ROSE: But can you deliver more and more? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): We are already doing that. We are already delivering. After my inauguration, January the 1st, the year 2003, I said in my inaugural speech if, when I end my term -- my first term, and the Brazilians would be able to have a breakfast in the morning, have lunch and dinner, I would have already felt fully satisfied with my mission very well. We developed a zero-hunger program, and within the zero-hunger program, we created the family stipend, the bosa familia (ph), and we are now serving 11 million families with that welfare program. We're talking about 44 million people, men and women. And in only four years, we managed to reduce -- we have already fulfilled many of the development goals that was for the year 2015. We have already reduced in half ... CHARLIE ROSE: In terms of reducing poverty? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Yes. CHARLIE ROSE: When you look -- go ahead, go. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Well, I can say to you something that we're still far away to reach perfection. But what we did in 4.5 years is much more than was done in the last 30 years in our country, in the last 40 years in our country, at the level of social policies and welfare programs. The growth of the industry -- manufacturing industry -- and the improvement of the life of people is in the best level in the last 25 years. It's important to remember just one thing: That Brazil went through almost 26 years with its economy under stagnation. So what happened in these 26 years? People became more poor. The marginalized population grew. Crime went up. People that lost hope. So these are the people that now, that we want to extend our hand and give them an opportunity, an opportunity that was lost in the last decades. And now, we want to give these people this opportunity, and we're doing it. CHARLIE ROSE: In context of that, what do you expect from the United States? The world's richest country, the world's most powerful country. What is it that you want President Bush and his successor to understand about Brazil in 2008? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Well, I believe much more than just for Brazil. I would like that the U.S. would have a more proactive policy and more active policy for the Southern American countries, especially for the smaller countries in South America. If we do not give a chance -- an opportunity to these countries, to make them grow, economically speaking, to create jobs for these countries -- smaller countries in South America, what will these people do in their lives? It's important to remember that we are experiencing a very important period of strengthening the democracy in the continent. Now that we don't have the fear of communism, now that the world is more comfortable, now that people have learned to have political disputes through democracy -- exercise democracy, I believe that the U.S. should have a much more proactive policy vis-a-vis Latin America. And so, that's why we are fighting at the World Trade Organization, and during the Doha rounds so that we can have a perfect combination -- the U.S. on the one hand reduce their agricultural subsidies, the European Union will facilitate market access to agricultural goods, and we from the G-20 will flexiblize our industrial goods, on the industrial goods front (ph). So we're close to reaching agreement. If we manage to reach an agreement, certainly who will win will not be the U.S., it won't be Brazil or the European Union. Who is going to win -- the ones that have to win are the poorest countries, the less developed countries in the world. This is what we want. CHARLIE ROSE: You went from growing up very poor, becoming a successful union leader, a successful political leader. You now have the company and privilege of -- among the powerful, among the establishment. Has it changed you? Are you different? Because the world you live in is so different than the world you came from? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Well, I have not changed. Why so? Because I know where I came from. And I know where I'm going back to. I have clarity about that. I have a clarity who effectively are the people that I represent, in Brazil, as also in my international trips. CHARLIE ROSE: They don't think that you have left them or forgotten them? The people you came from? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): You know why? Because I always say that the most important legacy that I want to leave in my political life is when I leave the presidency, and I will be called by brothers from my -- old brothers at the union hall, and this -- I will want this in my life. And another important thing that I learned in these meetings, imagine that you are going to attend -- the first time that I attended to the G-8 meeting, in Evian, in France. And so suddenly, there I was, facing President Bush. I was facing the prince of Saudi Arabia and Tony Blair and Chirac, and all these figures that I just watched them on television, and then suddenly there I was, a metal worker, a plant worker, a (inaudible). And then the meeting started, and I discovered I'm like them. They're not more important than I am because they rule a more important country than my country. I also have my importance, because I represent my people too. And then, you learn to speak in equal terms. And you know what I learned in my life? Negotiating. Since young, at the bargaining table. And that's what I decided to do in international politics too. No interlocutor by himself or herself would respect another interlocutor that doesn't respect himself or herself. So when Brazil comes to talk with the U.S., or when Brazil sits down to talk with France, we have to talk on equal terms. Our peoples have interests and obligations and duties and rights, but one country cannot bow to another one. We have to have our self-esteem. That is to say that we should walk proudly. And this I learned, and I learned this in my life, to respect myself. Because if I respect myself ... CHARLIE ROSE: You respect the others. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): I will win over the respect of the others. CHARLIE ROSE: Ronald Reagan used to say, who is viewed by many Americans as a successful president, used to say that he learned as much in his role as a labor negotiator in Hollywood than he did as an actor. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): It's possible. It's possible. Because a big part of the things that I decide today, my government, I learned them during my labor -- in the labor movement. Obviously, it's quite different to be at the bargaining table with the Ford Motor Company and to be bargaining and negotiating between Brazil and the U.S. as countries. These are things that are much more larger, but it was there, at the bargaining table at the plant level, representing my metal workers, my fellow workers, that I learned the art of bargaining, the art of negotiation. CHARLIE ROSE: Because the pie is finite. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Yes. The pie is finite, yes, but it's not fair that someone by itself eats the cake by itself, the pie by itself, the whole pie. We have to share that pie, split the pie, we have to develop the conditions so that we have to build the pie, make it larger, make it larger. We have been doing that in Brazil, and if you one day go to Brazil, I would like you to have access to everything that we did in terms of social policies and welfare programs in Brazil. That is a lot. You will see that it's a lot. CHARLIE ROSE: Tell me what you think your biggest failure in office has been. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): The other day, they made me this question, and I said the following. I have -- my major success is everything that I did up until now, and my major failure is not having doing the double of what I wanted to do up until now, that I did until now. And I discover every day that I can do more and more. And I learned that if the ruler is not quick enough, is not stubborn enough and fighting every day -- the ruler is like a train, the machine. It's like the machine -- it's like this train station. And so every time there is a new train going through that train station, it makes a lot of noise, it blows the whistles. But the train station is there, continues there, and the train leaves, the train goes away. And then the train station continues there. Then another train comes in. So in government and administrations, you have a public machine. You have a government machinery that is eternal, almost. And the government -- the administrations are transitory. So when you make a decision and you not follow up the decision on a daily basis, (inaudible), six months after you made that decision, you will perceive that nothing was done. That nothing moves forward because it's in the drawer of someone in the state bureaucracy, in government bureaucracy. So I have learned now, for example, we have launched an accelerated growth program. We're talking about $252 billion public investment to be invested in infrastructure projects, urban development in the shantytowns, and sewage and water supply and drinking water. So we have a managing committee for these infrastructure investments, coordinated by the chief of staff. The finance minister participated in the steering committee. The planning minister and the respective minister of transportation who participated, if it's for the environmental ministry, you will participate. And each cabinet minister also has their own steering committee. And they would gather every month, and every four months, everybody will be accountable to me how this project and this program is going, how many meters of paved highways we build, how many more others (ph) were built, pipeline, how much sewage systems and waste was collected and so on. Otherwise, the presidents, they end their term, and things -- nothing happens, we don't deliver, nothing happens. CHARLIE ROSE: There is also this issue, as you know, that came up in your campaign for reelection -- corruption. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Corruption is a very serious matter. It's not only a problem for Brazil. It's a problem around the world. But where corruption shows up more? When you fight corruption. If you want to avoid corruption, and to lift over the carpet and put the dust under the carpet, it won't show up on the media. Now, if you prepare the federal police, you hire more people to the federal police, you invest in intelligence. You have a general comptroller's office of -- and a general attorney's office to oversight the ministries, the states and the city authorities. And if you establish full autonomy with the general attorney's office, then things start to work, and then corruption starts to show up, because we are dismantling gangs and mafia that exist already within the state for 10, 15 years. And we still have a lot to do on this, and we will do it. We will fight corruption. And I have been saying every day, we -- men in public life -- to do the things in an honest way, and thinking to privilege, and to benefit the majority of the people. If we do not do that, for the benefit of the majority and we're thinking only on ourselves in a selfish way, we have to be punished for that. And duty (ph) for some reason, at some level, so that we can reach even the Supreme Court. CHARLIE ROSE: I want to talk about Brazil and the world. Tell me what you think of Chavez. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Well, I have a very good personal relationship with Chavez. Brazil has a very important relationship with Venezuela. We do have reciprocal interests. We have investments in Venezuela. And we have been working so that Venezuela could be integrated to the Mercosur block in the same way that we work for Bolivia to join the Mercosur block, and Ecuador. So, yes, we do have political issues -- yes, we do have political issues. But remember, at Mercosur we will always have political issues, because we are a continent that is in the process at work to consolidate our democracies. It's important to remember how many -- for how many years that the majority of the countries in Latin America were victims or under the rule of authoritarian regimes and dictatorships. So now we are learning -- we're in a learning process to build a sound democracy, an efficient democracy, and we believe that we'll manage to build democracy in South America. So the relationship of Brazil with Venezuela, and my relationship with Chavez is the best possible (ph) relationship. CHARLIE ROSE: And what's your advice to the president -- any president of America -- in dealing with Chavez, who seems to be so strongly anti-American? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Well, I believe that Chavez -- maybe he has some reasoning to be in that position. Once in a while, I play with President Bush and make jokes with President Bush. And with President Chavez too, because Chavez needs Bush to sell his oil. CHARLIE ROSE: Exactly. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): And Bush needs Chavez to buy their oil. And I don't know why they pick up so much on a fight. But anyway, I am convinced that this fight that many times there -- it's being a little bit exploited by the press, by the media -- will not cause any damage to the democratic relations that we exercise today in all South America. CHARLIE ROSE: Finally, when you leave office, what do you know you will accomplish and what do you hope you will accomplish? How will Brazil be different beyond its economics? LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): If I could forecast all that, it would be so good if I could forecast everything. But I still have 3.5 years of my term, so I believe that when I end my second term, December 31st of the year 2010, I believe that I would have been the president of the country that more invested in education in Brazil. To the year 2010, we will have built 10 public universities. We will have built 42 new university extension programs. And we will have built 214 vocational training schools plus, more than what we have already in Brazil. So this is an important data. In 93 years of the republic in Brazil, Brazil built 140 vocational training schools. We, in just eight years, we will manage to build 214 vocational training schools. And we are also having launched an educational development program, and we also launched distant education program -- distant learning -- to also educate our monitors and our teachers. We have the largest government procurement of books in the world. No government in the world buys the amount of books that we buy for public education. We're talking about 163 million educational books distributed for our students in the public education system. And more than that. The figures are huge. So what do I want to -- how do I want to be remembered as I leave the presidency? I want to be remembered as someone that ruled Brazil, governed Brazil with the difficulties that a developing country has, but with the consciousness that I couldn't do everything that could have been done, but I did everything that was at my reach. I want to lie down my head on the pillow and to say, "well, more than being honest with myself, I was honest with my people and true with my people." And this is -- then I can die easily, comfortably. CHARLIE ROSE: Thank you for this opportunity. It's a pleasure to meet you and a pleasure to talk to you about a great country. Thank you. LUIZ INACIO LULA DA SILVA (through translator): Thank you. --- Article originally available @ http://www.iht.com/articles/2007/09/28/america/28rose-dasilva.php