Countries such as Brazil and the USA have recently elected leaders who have denied long understood science. This ranges from health such as pandemics, global warming and the continual lost of biodiversity.
It is true that often we don’t know strange views of people until after they are elected. This is, however, not the case when it comes to either Trump or Bolsonaro (though the extent of their ignorance may not have been as clear).
Donald Trump regularly simply said “i don’t believe it” when presented with long-known facts on subjects such as global warming (stupid slogans such as “clean coal” come from this). This similar thinking is the reason that America has been hit so hard by coronavirus- he didn’t believe the doctors and ignored advice for about 3 months.
In terms of Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil, his scientific illiteracy in his policies is incredibly clear. Brazil is being hit hard by corona-virus, after months of false statements from Jair and his government. Furthermore his attacks on protection of the rain-forest as a first world move (how that works given he is a descendant of colonisers from Europe) and continual denial of facts that Brazil will be hit hard by climate change should preclude him from reelection.
In both cases (and in many other cases around the world) this can potentially be boiled down to the problems with democracy. A populist leader is not interested in warnings about the future- he will be out of office by the time negative results of his acts take place. Indeed, with populists end up pushing a small improvement in supporters lives now despite this will make things worse in the future.
It seems odd that so often these leaders can persuade ia to severely damage the lives od our children and grandchildren, that we otherwise spend much of our effort trying to improve.
I don’t have a solution, it is a problem that the world has had for many years. By the time the problem is clear enough for populists to admit it’s a problem they will claim it is to late. As people of the world, we must hold dishonest leaders responsible by voting them out of office, whether we like what they say or not.