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Much more than a simple selfie with Alexandre de Moraes

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Um repórter trapalhão (direita), o ministro Alexandre de Moraes (esquerda) e uma pessoa aleatória no meio.
A bumbling reporter (right), Minister Alexandre de Moraes (left) and a random person in the middle.| Photo: Paulo Polzonoff Jr.

The idea was one of simplicity almost childish: taking a selfie with Minister Alexandre de Moraes and, from there, describing the proximity to him who is today The Most Powerful Man in Brazil, several steps above President Jair Bolsonaro. And, as you will see in the following paragraphs, it almost worked. Almost, because I fumbled with my cell phone and then made the biggest mistake of sitting down and listening to what Alexandre de Moraes had to say. It was (is!) scary.

It was 9 o’clock on a cold and humid morning when Alexandre de Moraes arrived at the

campus of Universidade Positivo, where the 8th Congress of Electoral Law was being held. The car in which the minister was was escorted. And the presence of police and the giroflex for a brief moment contrasted with the incredible lack of security at the event. There was no concern about the possibility of a violent incident – or comical.

When noticing the movement in the access to the building , I turned on the cell phone. But I got distracted for a few seconds and, when I realized it, Alexandre de Moraes was in front of me, his bald head completely exposed to the Curitiba cold. Received by a girl from the event, he advanced without much sympathy. Absorbed that I had that supreme frown next to me, I even forgot about the selfie.

Alexandre de Moraes went ahead , without even looking around. It was as if there was nothing and no one around. As if the human being had sold his soul to the “institution”. You couldn’t tell if he had white teeth, yellow teeth, or decay, because he didn’t smile. I didn’t smell any perfume – although I had Covid a few days ago and my sense of smell is impaired. “What a life!” I thought. But I always think that.

To my surprise, not many people approached the minister. Even the other reporters looked intimidated. This gave me some leeway to take the long-awaited selfie. Oh, if only I hadn’t fumbled all over my cell phone. But I confused the photo with the video and I was all over the place with the front and back camera. Result: when I managed to position myself and aim the cell phone, the minister disappeared through a small door.

The original adventure ended prematurely . When studying the result (which illustrates this chronicle), I decided to give Minister Alexandre de Moraes a second chance to take a selfie with me. “I’ll catch you on the way out”, I thought. Or maybe he said it under his breath, but not in the menacing tone you surely read. I entered the auditorium and sat in the back, as is appropriate. And now the scary part of the chronicle begins.

The scary part

After the usual rappés, Alexandre de Moraes took the microphone and began to speak in front of a panel that showed the sponsors of the event, among them large stands such as Pinheiro Neto and Tozzini. There’s no denying it: speaks well, the man. A pity that he captivates the audience not for his intelligence or acumen, but for the fear that his words instill in anyone who has an appreciation for freedom.

This freedom that, of course, Alexandre de Moraes does not understand. And, it seems, there is no one in this world who can make him understand. When describing the historical scenario of our “democracy”, the military coup that put an end to the Monarchy until the present day, it was clear that Alexander of Moraes privileges the Marxist perspective and sees himself as a “transforming agent”, destined to guide society towards Progress. And, for that, he feels he needs to stop that freedom that we poor mortals don’t know how to use.

What caught my attention the most, however, was the tone of silly certainty with which Alexandre de Moraes expresses his ideas. “Social networks, which emerged to spread democratic ideas, were co-opted by anti-democratic forces,” he said at one point. A minister of the Supreme Court. To go on to say that the bloody revolutions of the Arab Spring were “democratic springs”.

There is nothing more dangerous than than a fool full of convictions, as appears to be the case. Unless, perhaps, a fool full of convictions and on top of that

Conspiracyist. Alexandre de Moraes firmly believes in the existence of an extreme right-wing machine (for him the right is always extreme) whose function is to disrupt the Democratic Rule of Law.

For him, democratic relations are like a soap opera. The STF would form part of a core of resistance. The core of good. The “far-right”, the nucleus of evil, would be divided into several smaller groups, dedicated to the disruption of the Democratic Rule of Law through fake news. Unable to understand how the free circulation of ideas works, especially ideas contrary to his own, Alexandre de Moraes sees the existence of a hierarchical structure containing a production nucleus, a dissemination nucleus, a political nucleus and a financial nucleus. In other words, a whole structure that conspires against what he understands by democracy.

In addition to being a conspiracyist, Alexandre de Moraes he is a cornered animal that, it seems, will do anything to prevent the ruling elite of which he is a part from losing power. “This obstacle will soon be overcome,” he says in a tone more of threat than prophecy. It is understood that this overcoming will take place through the defeat of Jair Bolsonaro and through the regulation of social networks – which Alexandre de Moraes sees as a matter of course – and the return of centralized information. Wow.

At that time, I left the auditorium. I kept thinking about the question I intended to ask the minister, if there was an opportunity: “Do you believe that Brazil will be pacified the day after the election, regardless of the result?” I think that, in a way, a minister of the Federal Supreme Court and future president of the Superior Electoral Court who is proud to be the protagonist of a “virtuous turmoil” is enough to answer my question.

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