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    TikTok CEO to testify before US Congress next month over data privacy

    TikTok CEO to testify before US Congress next month over data privacyShou Zi Chew will face legislators amid concerns over the social media app’s alleged collusion with Beijing in accessing user data As the US legislative battle over TikTok continues to escalate, Shou Zi Chew, the chief executive of the video-sharing app, will make his first appearance before Congress to testify next month. Chew will testify before the House energy and commerce committee on 23 March, Republican representative Cathy McMorris Rodgers confirmed in a statement on Monday, as scrutiny of the Chinese-owned app over data privacy concerns grows.TechScape: Is ‘banning’ TikTok protecting users or censorship? It depends who you askRead moreThe news comes after the app was banned on government devices and school campuses in a number of states in recent months, as well as on federal devices after a ban was passed in Congress in December. Next month the House foreign affairs committee plans to hold a vote on a bill aimed at blocking the use of TikTok entirely in the US.“ByteDance-owned TikTok has knowingly allowed the ability for the Chinese Communist party to access American user data,” McMorris Rodgers said, adding that Americans deserve to know how these actions impact their privacy and data security.TikTok has denied these claims, stating: “The Chinese Communist party has neither direct nor indirect control of ByteDance or TikTok,” according to a company spokesman. It confirmed on Monday that Chew will testify.“We welcome the opportunity to set the record straight about TikTok, ByteDance and the commitments we are making to address concerns about US national security before the House committee on energy and commerce,” the spokesman said, adding the company hopes “by sharing details of our comprehensive plans with the full committee, Congress can take a more deliberative approach to the issues at hand”.McMorris Rodgers and other Republican lawmakers have demanded more information from TikTok regarding the app’s impact on young people, concerns about harmful content and details on potential sexual exploitation of minors on the platform.TikTok was first targeted in earnest by the Trump administration in 2020, with a sweeping executive order prohibiting US companies from doing business with ByteDance, TikTok’s parent company. In the three years since, the company has sought to assure Washington that the personal data of US citizens cannot be accessed and its content cannot be manipulated by China’s Communist party or anyone else under Beijing’s influence.While Biden revoked the Trump administration ban in June 2021, the reversal was made with a stipulation that the US committee on foreign investment (CFIUS) conduct a security review of the platform and suggested a path forward to avoid a permanent ban.That review has been ongoing as the CFIUS and TikTok have been in talks for more than two years aiming to reach a national security agreement to protect the data of US TikTok users. The White House on Friday declined to comment on whether it would support a legislative ban on TikTok or the status of the talks.Reuters contributed to this articleTopicsTikTokUS CongressSocial mediaDigital mediaUS politicsnewsReuse this content More

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    The Revolutionary Power of a Skein of Yarn

    Not long ago, Michelle Obama posted a black-and-white photo of herself on Instagram, cozy in an armchair, a nearby side table displaying an adorable baby pic of Malia and Sasha. She is barefoot, dressed in wide-legged jeans and a satin shirt, smiling widely as she looks down … at her knitting. “Every time I tell people how much I love to knit,” she writes in the caption, “They seem so surprised!”And I thought, why?I suspect it’s because knitters, unlike Mrs. Obama, are presumed to be aging ungracefully: prim, elderly (probably white) ladies rocking away on the porch in cultural irrelevance. Before I refute that — yarn lovers come in all ages, genders, sexualities and races — I want to ask, even if it were true, so what? The dismissal, the reflexive derision of women from midlife onward — especially if we stop chasing social media standards of beauty — is a nasty form of ageist sexism.Besides, that imagined innocuousness can be a strength, even a superpower. Knitting is considered a “craft,” one you begin by “casting on,” evoking spells and witchery, a kind of practical magic. What greater sorcery is there, really, than making something, whether turning raw fiber to thread or raw flour to bread or engaging in the ultimate creative act: conjuring new humans from nowhere at all?Our needles have also been a sharp political tool, wielded to fight injustice, to express both patriotism and protest, especially when other outlets were forbidden. No matter how you ended up feeling about those pink pussyhats, it was no accident that women’s first collective act of dissent after the election of President Donald Trump was to knit.Back in the days of the American Revolution, women’s boycotts of British cloth in favor of “homespun,” and their defiant public “spinning bees” were at least as instrumental in the fight for independence as the spilling of all that tea. Molly “Old Mom” Rinker, one of the era’s fabled spies, reportedly tucked bits of information about British troop movements into balls of yarn. Who would suspect an aging matron, placidly knitting socks at a scenic overlook, of tossing message-laced skeins to the patriots? Knitting’s benign reputation allowed her to subvert the very conventions she appeared to uphold.The French had their “tricoteuses,” which translates to women knitters (they have a word for that!), particularly those who, during the Reign of Terror, sat before the guillotines bearing grim witness to public executions. You may recall Madame Defarge from “A Tale of Two Cities,” whose stitches formed a Reaper’s roster of the condemned. Her real-life counterparts were equally complex, a mix of feminist hero and vengeful villain. Many (presumably savoring l’ironie) were said to knit liberty caps as the heads rolled: those red, conical hats with the point folded forward that represented freedom from tyranny. Marianne, a national symbol of France, is often depicted in a liberty cap. So, for reasons I cannot determine, is Papa Smurf.Sojourner Truth offered a different twist on yarn and femininity during the Civil War, posing for photographs with her knitting, a nod to her belief that education and industry were the key to her community’s advancement. Decades later, when troops in World War I were dying by the tens of thousands from an epidemic of trench foot, caused by persistently wet toes, it was knitters to the rescue. The best defense was to change your socks — a lot — but factories of the time couldn’t handle the load, so home crafters produced them. I’m not saying we won that war because of women’s knitting, but I’m not sure we would’ve won without it.Another activist first lady, Eleanor Roosevelt, was rarely without her knitting and began the Knit for Defense campaign during World War II. Similarly to Old Mom Rinker, female spies of the time used knitting as cover, one even parachuting behind enemy lines, then using her needles to transport secret code.Today’s public knitters — and crocheters — are arguably more radical, perhaps in part because making something with your own hands almost by definition pushes back against dehumanizing technology and consumer culture. Knitters have mobilized against nuclear proliferation and the decimation of coral reefs. They have made blankets to welcome refugees; crafted tiny sweaters to save oil spill-damaged penguins; knit “temperature scarves” whose rows and colors document climate change; stitched for racial justice; sent handmade uteri to Congress in support of abortion rights (an especially apt political statement, since knitting needles were notoriously used, to women’s peril, in back-alley abortions). During the second Iraq war, a knitter in Denmark swathed a tank in a massive, homey knit blanket. The Russian feminist punk group Pussy Riot famously masked their identities beneath brightly colored, knit balaclavas while performing songs such as “Putin’s Pissed Himself” and “Kill the Sexist.”Do such acts of “craftivism” ultimately make a difference? I can’t say. But I do believe that change starts with personal reflection, followed by connection to like-minded others, and, finally, engagement in repeated, targeted collective action. The conversations our projects inspire can jump-start that process, one stitch at a time.In that spirit, I’d like to see knitters, perhaps led by Mrs. Obama, next aim their needles at the fashion industry, pushing for the kind of large-scale overhaul here that is beginning in the European Union: an unprecedented series of measures addressing the catastrophic environmental and social impact involved in the making and disposal of our clothing. The goal by 2030 is for all textiles sold in that market to be, among other things, reparable, recyclable, often made from recycled fibers that are free from hazardous chemicals and produced with respect for labor rights.It’s a necessary start. Fashion is responsible for more greenhouse gasses than international flights and maritime shipping combined, not to mention a fifth of global plastics and trillions of microfibers: tiny plastic threads shed by clothing when laundered that have become one of the biggest threats to the ocean. Treatment of the industry’s largely female work force in Asia, long a human rights concern, has deteriorated so badly since the pandemic that some activists now refer to it as the “garment industrial trauma complex.” Not so pretty.This would be a natural fit for those who value the materials, skill and care that go into our garments. Besides, people who think about the ethics and planetary cost of what they put into their bodies ought to extend that “omnivore’s dilemma” to what they put onto them.Knitters might consider yarn-bombing the New York State Legislature (we like a little levity with our lobbying), where the recently-amended Fashion Act aims to hold large companies accountable for their environmental and labor practices. Or perhaps support the FABRIC Act, sponsored by Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, which includes increased safety and wage protections for American piece workers, for whom handicraft is decidedly not a luxury.So yes, knitting can be meditative, it can be relaxing, it may reduce vulnerability to dementia, anxiety and high blood pressure. It also results (if you’re lucky) in some pretty nice stuff. And maybe the demographic does still skew toward the older and the female. But why not embrace that?Because Michelle and the rest of us aging ladies? We don’t have to just sit and rock; we can rock it.Peggy Orenstein (@peggyorenstein) is the author of “Unraveling: What I Learned About Life While Shearing Sheep, Dyeing Wool, and Making the World’s Ugliest Sweater.”The Times is committed to publishing a diversity of letters to the editor. We’d like to hear what you think about this or any of our articles. Here are some tips. And here’s our email: The New York Times Opinion section on Facebook, Twitter (@NYTopinion) and Instagram. More

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    Is Brazil’s Alexandre de Moraes Actually Good for Democracy?

    Alexandre de Moraes, a Brazilian Supreme Court justice, was crucial to Brazil’s transfer of power. But his aggressive tactics are prompting debate: Can one go too far to fight the far right?When Brazil’s highway police began holding up buses full of voters on Election Day, he ordered them to stop.When right-wing voices spread the baseless claim that Brazil’s election was stolen, he ordered them banned from social media.And when thousands of right-wing protesters stormed Brazil’s halls of power this month, he ordered the officials who had been responsible for securing the buildings arrested.Alexandre de Moraes, a Brazilian Supreme Court justice, has taken up the mantle of Brazil’s lead defender of democracy. Using a broad interpretation of the court’s powers, he has pushed to investigate and prosecute, as well as to silence on social media, anyone he deems a menace to Brazil’s institutions.As a result, in the face of antidemocratic attacks from Brazil’s former far-right president, Jair Bolsonaro, and his supporters, Mr. de Moraes cleared the way for the transfer of power. To many on Brazil’s left, that made him the man who saved Brazil’s young democracy.Yet to many others in Brazil, he is threatening it. Mr. de Moraes’s aggressive approach and expanding authority have made him one of the nation’s most powerful people, and also put him at the center of a complicated debate in Brazil over how far is too far to fight the far right.Damage to the Supreme Court caused by right-wing protesters. Mr. de Moraes ordered the officials who had been responsible for securing the buildings arrested.Victor Moriyama for The New York TimesHe has jailed people without trial for posting threats on social media; helped sentence a sitting congressman to nearly nine years in prison for threatening the court; ordered raids on businessmen with little evidence of wrongdoing; suspended an elected governor from his job; and unilaterally blocked dozens of accounts and thousands of posts on social media, with virtually no transparency or room for appeal.In the hunt for justice after the riot this month, he has become further emboldened. His orders to ban prominent voices online have proliferated, and now he has the man accused of fanning Brazil’s extremist flames, Mr. Bolsonaro, in his cross hairs. Last week, Mr. de Moraes included Mr. Bolsonaro in a federal investigation of the riot, which he is overseeing, suggesting that the former president inspired the violence.His moves fit into a broader trend of Brazil’s Supreme Court increasing its power — and taking what critics have called a more repressive turn in the process.Many legal and political analysts are now sparring over Mr. de Moraes’s long-term impact. Some argue that his actions are necessary, extraordinary measures in the face of an extraordinary threat. Others say that, acting under the banner of safeguarding democracy, he is instead harming the nation’s balance of power.“We cannot disrespect democracy in order to protect it,” said Irapuã Santana, a lawyer and legal columnist for O Globo, one of Brazil’s biggest newspapers.Understand the Riots in Brazil’s CapitalThousands of rioters supporting Jair Bolsonaro, the far-right former president of Brazil,  stormed the nation’s Congress, Supreme Court and presidential offices on Jan. 8.Anatomy of a Mass Attack: After Mr. Bolsonaro lost the presidential election in October, many believed that the threat of violence from his supporters would recede. Here is what went wrong.The Investigations: Authorities face several major questions as they piece together how rioters briefly seized the seats of Brazil’s government.Digital Playbook: Misinformation researchers are studying how the internet was used ahead of the riots in Brazil. Many are drawing a comparison to the Jan. 6 attack.The Role of the Police: Their early inaction in the riot shows how security forces can help empower violence and deepen the threat to democracy.Mr. Santana voted in October for Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, the new leftist president, but said he worried that many in Brazil were cheering on Mr. de Moraes without considering the potential consequences. “Today he’s doing it against our enemy. Tomorrow he’s doing it against our friend — or against us,” he said. “It’s a dangerous precedent.”Milly Lacombe, a left-wing commentator, said such concerns missed a bigger danger, evidenced by the riots and a foiled bomb plot to disrupt Mr. Lula’s inauguration. She argued, in her column on the Brazilian news site UOL, that the far right posed grave perils to Brazil’s democracy, which should overshadow concerns about free speech or judicial overreach.“Under the threat of a Nazi-fascist-inspired insurrection, is it worth temporarily suppressing individual freedoms in the name of collective freedom?” she wrote. “I would say yes.”Brazil’s former far-right president, Jair Bolsonaro, center, has long accused Mr. de Moraes of overstepping his authority and had tried to impeach him.Dado Galdieri for The New York TimesThe dispute has illustrated a larger global debate not only on judicial power but also about how to handle misinformation online without silencing dissenting voices..css-1v2n82w{max-width:600px;width:calc(100% – 40px);margin-top:20px;margin-bottom:25px;height:auto;margin-left:auto;margin-right:auto;font-family:nyt-franklin;color:var(–color-content-secondary,#363636);}@media only screen and (max-width:480px){.css-1v2n82w{margin-left:20px;margin-right:20px;}}@media only screen and (min-width:1024px){.css-1v2n82w{width:600px;}}.css-161d8zr{width:40px;margin-bottom:18px;text-align:left;margin-left:0;color:var(–color-content-primary,#121212);border:1px solid var(–color-content-primary,#121212);}@media only screen and (max-width:480px){.css-161d8zr{width:30px;margin-bottom:15px;}}.css-tjtq43{line-height:25px;}@media only screen and (max-width:480px){.css-tjtq43{line-height:24px;}}.css-x1k33h{font-family:nyt-cheltenham;font-size:19px;font-weight:700;line-height:25px;}.css-1hvpcve{font-size:17px;font-weight:300;line-height:25px;}.css-1hvpcve em{font-style:italic;}.css-1hvpcve strong{font-weight:bold;}.css-1hvpcve a{font-weight:500;color:var(–color-content-secondary,#363636);}.css-1c013uz{margin-top:18px;margin-bottom:22px;}@media only screen and (max-width:480px){.css-1c013uz{font-size:14px;margin-top:15px;margin-bottom:20px;}}.css-1c013uz a{color:var(–color-signal-editorial,#326891);-webkit-text-decoration:underline;text-decoration:underline;font-weight:500;font-size:16px;}@media only screen and (max-width:480px){.css-1c013uz a{font-size:13px;}}.css-1c013uz a:hover{-webkit-text-decoration:none;text-decoration:none;}What we consider before using anonymous sources. Do the sources know the information? What’s their motivation for telling us? Have they proved reliable in the past? Can we corroborate the information? Even with these questions satisfied, The Times uses anonymous sources as a last resort. The reporter and at least one editor know the identity of the source.Learn more about our process.Twitter’s owner, Elon Musk, weighed in that Mr. de Moraes’s moves were “extremely concerning.” Glenn Greenwald, an American journalist who has lived in Brazil for years and has become a critic of certain social-media rules, debated a Brazilian sociologist this week about Mr. de Moraes’s actions. And Brazilian officials have suggested that they would consider new laws to address what can be said online.Mr. de Moraes has declined requests for an interview for more than a year. The Supreme Court, in a statement, said that Mr. de Moraes’s investigations and many of his orders have been endorsed by the full court and “are absolutely constitutional.”In the hours after the riot, Mr. de Moraes suspended the governor of the district responsible for security for the protest that turned violent and then ordered the arrests of two district security officials. Still, there is little support in the Supreme Court for arresting Mr. Bolsonaro because of a lack of evidence, as well as fears that it would prompt unrest, according to a senior court official who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations.Multiple Supreme Court justices instead prefer to try to convict Mr. Bolsonaro for abusing his power through the country’s election agency, making him ineligible to run for office for eight years, the official said.Mr. Bolsonaro, who has been in Florida since Dec. 30, has long accused Mr. de Moraes of overstepping his authority and has tried to impeach him. Mr. Bolsonaro’s lawyer said he had always respected democracy and repudiated the riots.Mr. de Moraes, 54, spent decades as a public prosecutor, private lawyer and constitutional law professor.He was appointed to the Supreme Court in 2017, a move denounced by the left because he was aligned with center-right parties.Mr. de Moraes with President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva last month.Andre Borges/EPA, via ShutterstockIn 2019, the Supreme Court’s chief justice issued a one-page order authorizing the court to open its own investigations instead of waiting for law enforcement. For the court — which, unlike the U.S. Supreme Court, handles tens of thousands of cases a year, including certain criminal cases — it was a drastic expansion of authority.The chief justice tapped Mr. de Moraes to run the first inquiry: an investigation into “fake news.” Mr. de Moraes’s first move was to order a magazine to retract an article that had linked the chief justice to a corruption investigation. (He later rescinded the order when the magazine produced evidence.)Mr. de Moraes then shifted his focus to online disinformation, primarily from Mr. Bolsonaro’s supporters. That gave him an outsize role in Brazilian politics that grew further this year when, by chance, his rotation as Brazil’s election chief coincided with the vote.In that job, Mr. de Moraes became Brazilian democracy’s chief guardian — and attack dog. Ahead of the vote, he cut a deal with the military to run additional tests on voting machines. On Election Day, he ordered the federal highway police to explain why officers were stopping buses full of voters. And on election night, he arranged for government leaders to announce the winner jointly, a show of unity against any attempt to hold onto power.In the middle of that group of leaders was Mr. de Moraes himself. He delivered a forceful speech about the value of democracy, drawing chants of “Xandão,” or “Big Alex” in Portuguese. “I hope from the election onward,” he said, “the attacks on the electoral system will finally stop.”They did not. Right-wing protesters demonstrated outside military bases, calling on the military to overturn the vote. In response, Mr. de Moraes ordered tech companies to ban more accounts, according to a senior lawyer at one major tech firm, who spoke on the condition of anonymity out of fear of angering Mr. de Moraes.Supporters of Mr. Bolsonaro protesting in front of army headquarters in São Paulo to call for military intervention after the election in November.Victor Moriyama for The New York TimesAmong the accounts Mr. de Moraes ordered taken down are those of at least five members of Congress, a billionaire businessman and more than a dozen prominent right-wing pundits, including one of Brazil’s most popular podcast hosts.Mr. de Moraes’s orders to remove accounts do not specify why, according to the lawyer and a copy of one order obtained by The New York Times. Visits to banned accounts on Twitter yield a blank page and a blunt message: The “account has been withheld in Brazil in response to a legal demand.” And account owners are simply told they are banned because of a court order and should consider contacting a lawyer.The lawyer said that his tech firm appealed some orders it viewed as overly broad, but that Mr. de Moraes denied them. Appeals to the full bench of judges have also been denied or ignored, this person said.Multiple social networks declined to comment on the record for this article. Mr. de Moraes is a potential threat to their business in Brazil. Last year, he briefly banned Telegram in the country after it did not respond to his orders. There were talks recently among some justices about the need to bring Mr. de Moraes’s investigations to an end, according to the court official, but after the Jan. 8 riot, those talks ceased. The riot has increased support for Mr. de Moraes among his peers, according to the official.Beatriz Rey, a political scientist at the State University of Rio de Janeiro, said Mr. de Moraes’s approach, though not ideal, is necessary because other branches of the government, especially Congress, have skirted their duties.“You shouldn’t have one justice fighting threats to democracy over and over again,” she said. “But the problem is the system itself is malfunctioning right now.”André Spigariol More

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    Será que Alexandre de Moraes é realmente bom para a democracia?

    Alexandre de Moraes, Ministro do Supremo Tribunal Federal, foi crucial para a transição de poder no Brasil. Mas suas táticas agressivas estão provocando um debate: É possível ir longe demais para combater a extrema-direita?Quando a Polícia Rodoviária Federal começou a impedir a passagem de ônibus cheios de eleitores no dia da eleição, ele ordenou que parassem.Quando vozes da direita espalharam a alegação infundada de que a eleição no Brasil foi roubada, ele ordenou que fossem banidas das redes sociais.E quando milhares de manifestantes da direita invadiram as sedes dos três poderes neste mês, ele ordenou que autoridades responsáveis pela segurança fossem presas.Alexandre de Moraes, Ministro do Supremo Tribunal Federal, assumiu o papel de principal defensor da democracia brasileira. Usando uma interpretação ampla dos poderes do Tribunal, Moraes impulsionou investigações e processos, bem como o silenciamento nas redes sociais, de qualquer pessoa considerada por ele uma ameaça às instituições brasileiras.Como resultado, diante dos ataques antidemocráticos do ex-presidente de extrema direita do Brasil, Jair Bolsonaro, e de seus apoiadores, Moraes abriu caminho para a transição de poder. Para muitos da esquerda brasileira, isso fez dele o homem que salvou a jovem democracia brasileira.No entanto, para muitos outros no Brasil, ele a ameaça. A abordagem agressiva e a expansão da autoridade de Moraes fizeram dele uma das pessoas mais poderosas do país, e também o colocaram no centro de um debate complicado no Brasil sobre até que ponto se pode ir para lutar contra a extrema-direita.Danos causados ao Supremo Tribunal Federal por manifestantes da direita. Alexandre de Moraes ordenou a prisão de autoridades responsáveis pela segurança.Victor Moriyama for The New York TimesAlexandre de Moraes já ordenou prisões sem julgamento por ameaças postadas em redes sociais; liderou o voto que sentenciou um deputado federal a quase nove anos de prisão por ameaçar o Tribunal; ordenou busca e apreensão contra empresários com poucas evidências de irregularidades; suspendeu um governador eleito de seu cargo; e bloqueou monocraticamente dezenas de contas e milhares de publicações nas redes sociais, praticamente sem transparência ou espaço para recurso.Na sua caça em nome da justiça após o tumulto deste mês, Moraes se tornou mais audacioso. Suas ordens para banir vozes influentes online se proliferaram, e, agora, ele colocou o homem acusado de atiçar as chamas extremistas do Brasil, Bolsonaro, sob sua mira. Na semana passada, Moraes incluiu o ex-presidente na investigação federal do tumulto, da qual é o relator, sugerindo que o ex-presidente tenha inspirado a violência.Suas ações se encaixam em uma tendência mais ampla da Suprema Corte brasileira de aumentar o próprio poder — tomando o que os críticos chamam de um rumo mais repressivo no processo.Vários juristas e analistas políticos agora discutem que impacto Moraes terá a longo prazo. Alguns argumentam que as suas ações são medidas extraordinárias, mas necessárias diante de uma ameaça extraordinária. Outros dizem que, agindo sob a bandeira da salvaguarda da democracia, Moraes está, em vez disso, prejudicando o equilíbrio de poder no país.“Não podemos desrespeitar a democracia para protegê-la”, disse Irapuã Santana, advogado e colunista jurídico do jornal O Globo, um dos maiores do Brasil.Santana votou em Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, o novo presidente da esquerda, em outubro, mas disse temer que muitos no Brasil estejam apoiando Moraes sem considerar as possíveis consequências. “Hoje ele está fazendo isso contra o nosso ‘inimigo’. Amanhã ele está fazendo isso contra o nosso amigo — ou contra nós”, disse. “É um precedente perigoso.”Milly Lacombe, uma comentarista da esquerda, disse que tais preocupações ignoram um perigo maior, evidenciado pelos tumultos e um complô frustrado de atentado à bomba para perturbar a posse de Lula. Ela argumentou, em sua coluna no site de notícias UOL, que a extrema direita apresenta graves perigos para a democracia brasileira, o que deve ofuscar as preocupações com liberdade de expressão ou excesso judicial.“Sob ameaça de uma insurreição de inspiração nazi-fascista vale suprimir temporariamente liberdades individuais em nome da liberdade coletiva?” escreveu. “Eu diria que sim.”O ex-presidente de direita, Jair Bolsonaro, há muito tempo acusa Alexandre de Moraes de exceder sua autoridade e tentou um impeachment contra o Ministro.Dado Galdieri for The New York TimesA disputa ilustra um debate global mais amplo, não apenas sobre o poder do Judiciário, mas também sobre como lidar com a desinformação nas redes sem silenciar vozes dissidentes.O proprietário do Twitter, Elon Musk, ponderou que os movimentos de Moraes foram “extremamente preocupantes.” Glenn Greenwald, um jornalista americano que vive no Brasil há anos e crítico de certas regras das redes sociais, participou de um debate nesta semana com um sociólogo brasileiro sobre as ações de Moraes. E as autoridades brasileiras sugeriram que poderiam considerar novas leis para determinar o que pode ser dito nas redes.Alexandre de Moraes tem recusado pedidos de entrevista há mais de um ano. O Supremo Tribunal Federal, em nota, disse que as investigações de Moraes e muitas de suas ordens foram endossadas por toda a Corte e “são absolutamente constitucionais.”Nas horas seguintes ao tumulto em Brasília, Moraes afastou o governador do Distrito Federal, responsável pela segurança do protesto que se tornou violento, e depois ordenou a prisão de dois agentes de segurança do Distrito Federal.Ainda assim, há pouco apoio no Supremo Tribunal Federal para prender Bolsonaro, devido à insuficiência das provas e temores de que uma prisão provocaria novos conflitos. De acordo com um alto funcionário do Supremo Tribunal Federal que falou sob condição de anonimato para discutir conversas privadas, diversos ministros da corte preferem tentar condenar Bolsonaro por abuso de poder no Tribunal Superior Eleitoral, o que o tornaria inelegível por oito anos.Bolsonaro, que está na Flórida desde 30 de dezembro, há muito tempo acusa Moraes de exceder sua autoridade e tentou um impeachment contra o Ministro. O advogado de Bolsonaro disse que ele sempre respeitou a democracia e repudiou os tumultos.Moraes, de 54 anos, tem décadas de atuação como promotor público, advogado e professor de Direito Constitucional.O Ministro foi nomeado para o Supremo Tribunal Federal em 2017, uma medida condenada pela esquerda porque ele estava alinhado com partidos da centro-direita.Alexandre de Moraes com o Presidente Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva no mês passado.Andre Borges/EPA, via ShutterstockEm 2019, o então presidente do Supremo Tribunal Federal emitiu uma portaria de uma página autorizando a Corte a instaurar seus próprios inquéritos ao invés de aguardar outras autoridades. Para o Tribunal — que, ao contrário da Suprema Corte dos Estados Unidos, processa dezenas de milhares de casos por ano, incluindo certos casos criminais — essa foi uma expansão drástica de sua jurisdição.O presidente da Corte designou Moraes para iniciar o primeiro inquérito: uma investigação sobre “fake news”. O primeiro passo de Moraes foi ordenar a uma revista que retirasse do ar uma reportagem que ligava o presidente da Corte a uma investigação sobre corrupção. (Ordem que revogou quando a revista mostrou provas.)Moraes então mudou o foco das investigações para a desinformação nas redes, principalmente vinda dos apoiadores de Jair Bolsonaro, o que deu a ele um enorme papel na política brasileira. Papel que cresceu ainda mais este ano, quando, por acaso, seu revezamento como presidente do Tribunal Superior Eleitoral coincidiu com a eleição.Nessa função, Alexandre de Moraes se tornou o maior guardião — e cão de guarda — da democracia brasileira. Antes da eleição, Moraes fez um acordo com os militares para realizar testes adicionais em urnas eletrônicas. No dia da eleição, ordenou que a Polícia Rodoviária Federal explicasse por que os policiais estavam parando ônibus cheios de eleitores. E, na noite da eleição, Moraes convidou os líderes da República para que anunciassem o vencedor em conjunto, uma demonstração de unidade contra qualquer tentativa de perpetuação no poder.No meio desse grupo de líderes estava o próprio Alexandre de Moraes. O Ministro fez um discurso contundente sobre o valor da democracia, provocando cantos de “Xandão”.“Espero que, a partir dessa eleição”, disse, “finalmente cessem as agressões ao sistema eleitoral.”Elas não cessaram. Manifestantes da direita protestaram em frente aos quartéis, pedindo aos militares que revogassem a eleição. Em resposta, Moraes ordenou que empresas de tecnologia suspendessem mais contas, de acordo com um advogado sênior de uma grande empresa de tecnologia, que falou sob condição de anonimato por medo de irritar o Ministro.Apoiadores de Jair Bolsonaro protestam em frente ao quartel do Exército em São Paulo para pedir intervenção militar após eleições em novembro.Victor Moriyama for The New York TimesEntre as contas que Moraes ordenou que fossem retiradas estão as de pelo menos cinco parlamentares federais, um empresário bilionário e mais de uma dezena de influenciadores da direita, incluindo um dos apresentadores de podcast mais populares do país.As ordens de Moraes para remover contas não especificam o motivo, de acordo com o advogado e uma cópia de uma ordem obtida pelo New York Times. Acessos a contas proibidas no Twitter levam a uma página em branco e uma mensagem contundente: “a conta foi retida no Brasil em resposta a uma exigência legal.” Os donos das contas são simplesmente informados de que estão suspensas devido a uma ordem judicial e que devem considerar entrar em contato com um advogado.O advogado disse que sua empresa de tecnologia entrou com recursos contra ordens que considera excessivamente amplas, mas eles foram negados por Moraes. Os recursos ao Plenário do STF também foram negados ou ignorados, disse.Procuradas pela reportagem, várias redes sociais se recusaram a comentar o assunto publicamente. Moraes é uma potencial ameaça para os seus negócios no Brasil. No ano passado, Moraes baniu brevemente o Telegram no país após a empresa não cumprir suas ordens.Recentemente houve conversas entre alguns ministros do STF sobre a necessidade de pôr fim aos inquéritos de Moraes, de acordo com a fonte do tribunal, mas após o tumulto de 8 de janeiro, esses comentários cessaram. O tumulto aumentou o apoio a Moraes entre seus pares, de acordo com o alto funcionário da Corte.Beatriz Rey, cientista política da Universidade Estadual do Rio de Janeiro, disse que a abordagem de Moraes, embora não ideal, se faz necessária porque outros poderes do governo, especialmente o Legislativo, não cumpriram seu dever.“Você não deveria ter um Ministro combatendo ameaças à democracia repetidas vezes,” disse. “Mas o problema é que o próprio sistema está funcionando mal neste momento.”André Spigariol More

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    Así comenzó el ataque en Brasilia

    Mientras el autobús se dirigía desde el corazón agrícola de Brasil a la capital, Andrea Barth sacó su teléfono para preguntar a sus compañeros de viaje, uno por uno, qué pensaban hacer cuando llegaran.“Derrocar a los ladrones”, respondió un hombre.“Sacar al ‘Nueve Dedos’“, dijo otro, en referencia al presidente de izquierda de Brasil, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, quien hace décadas perdió parte de un dedo en un accidente de trabajo sucedido en una fábrica.Mientras los pasajeros describían sus planes de violencia, más de cien autobuses llenos de simpatizantes de Jair Bolsonaro, el expresidente de extrema derecha, también descendían en Brasilia, la capital.Video posted on social media shows dozens of supporters of Jair Bolsonaro arriving in Brasília by bus.Jakelyne Loiola, via TwitterUn día después, el 8 de enero, una turba pro-Bolsonaro desató un caos que conmocionó al país y que dio la vuelta al mundo. Los agitadores invadieron y saquearon el Congreso, el Supremo Tribunal Federal y el palacio de gobierno del país, con la intención, según muchos de ellos, de incitar a los líderes militares a derrocar a Lula, quien había asumido el cargo una semana antes.El ataque caótico tuvo un parecido inquietante con el asalto al Capitolio de Estados Unidos el 6 de enero de 2021: cientos de manifestantes de derecha, alegando que una elección estuvo amañada, entraron a los pasillos del poder.Ambos episodios impactaron a dos de las democracias más grandes del mundo, y casi dos años después del ataque de Estados Unidos, el asalto del domingo de hace un par de semanas mostró que el extremismo de extrema derecha, inspirado por líderes antidemocráticos e impulsado por teorías de la conspiración, sigue siendo una grave amenaza.Lula y las autoridades judiciales actuaron con rapidez para recuperar el control y detuvieron a más de 1150 alborotadores, desalojaron los campamentos donde se refugiaron, buscaron a sus financiadores y organizadores y, el viernes de la semana pasada, abrieron una investigación sobre cómo Bolsonaro pudo haberlos inspirado.The New York Times habló con las autoridades, servidores públicos, testigos y participantes en las protestas y revisó decenas de videos y cientos de publicaciones en las redes sociales para reconstruir lo sucedido. El resultado de la investigación muestra que una turba superó con rapidez y sin esfuerzo a la policía.También muestra que algunos agentes de la policía no solo no actuaron contra los alborotadores, sino que parecían simpatizar con ellos, ya que se dedicaron a tomar fotos mientras la turba destruía el Congreso. Un hombre que fue a ver qué estaba pasando dijo que la policía simplemente le indicó que se dirigiera a los disturbios.El desequilibrio entre los manifestantes y la policía sigue siendo uno de los puntos centrales de la investigación de las autoridades y las entrevistas con los agentes de seguridad han generado acusaciones de negligencia grave e incluso de complicidad activa en el caos. Tras los disturbios, las autoridades federales suspendieron al gobernador responsable de la protección de los edificios públicos y detuvieron a dos altos funcionarios de seguridad que trabajaban para él. More

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    How a Mob Tried to Oust Brazil’s Lula

    As the bus made its way from Brazil’s agricultural heartland to the capital, Andrea Barth pulled out her phone to ask fellow passengers, one by one, what they intended to do once they arrived.“Overthrow the thieves,” one man replied.“Take out ‘Nine-Finger,’” said another, referring to Brazil’s leftist president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, who lost part of a finger decades ago in a factory accident.“You might escape a lightning strike,” another man said, as if confronting Mr. Lula himself. “But you won’t escape me.”As the passengers described their plans for violence, more than a hundred other buses bulging with supporters of Jair Bolsonaro, the far-right former president, were also descending on Brasília, the capital.Video posted on social media shows dozens of Bolsonaro supporters arriving in Brasília by bus.Jakelyne Loiola, via TwitterA day later, on Jan. 8, a pro-Bolsonaro mob unleashed mayhem that shocked the country and was broadcast around the world. Rioters invaded and ransacked Brazil’s Congress, Supreme Court and presidential offices, intending, many of them said, to spur military leaders to topple Mr. Lula, who had taken office just a week earlier.The chaotic attack bore an unsettling resemblance to the Jan. 6, 2021 storming of the U.S. Capitol: Hundreds of right-wing protesters, claiming an election was rigged, stomping through the halls of power.Each episode rattled one of the world’s largest democracies, and almost two years to the day after the U.S. attack, last Sunday’s assault showed that far-right extremism, inspired by antidemocratic leaders and fed by conspiracy theories, remains a grave threat.Mr. Lula and judicial authorities have moved swiftly to reassert control, arresting more than 1,150 rioters, clearing the encampments that gave them refuge and searching for their funders and organizers.But questions continue to swirl about how a relatively small band of unarmed protesters, who had largely publicized their plans, were able so easily to storm the country’s most important government buildings.The New York Times spoke with law enforcement, government officials, eyewitnesses and protesters, and reviewed dozens of videos and hundreds of social media posts to piece together what happened. The reporting shows that a mob, led by what appeared to be a relatively small group of extremists bent on destruction, swiftly and effortlessly overwhelmed a drastically outnumbered police presence.It also shows that some officers not only failed to take any action against rioters, but, in at least one case, waved a spectator toward Congress.The imbalance between protesters and the police remains a central focus of the authorities’ investigation, and interviews with security officials yielded accusations of gross negligence and even active complicity in the mayhem. After the riot, federal authorities suspended the governor responsible for protecting the buildings and ordered the arrest of two top security officials who worked for him. More

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    Brazil Riot and Jan. 6 Attack Followed a Similar Digital Playbook, Experts Say

    On TikTok and YouTube, videos claiming voter fraud in Brazil’s recent elections have been recirculating for days.On the WhatsApp and Telegram messaging services, an image of a poster announcing the date, time and location of the protests against the government was copied and shared over the weekend.And on Facebook and Twitter, hashtags designed to evade detection by the authorities were used by organizers as they descended onto government buildings in the capital, Brasília, on Sunday.One day after the thousands of people broke into government buildings to protest what they falsely claim was a stolen election, misinformation researchers are studying how the internet was used to stoke anger and to organize far-right groups ahead of the riots. Many are drawing a comparison to the Jan. 6 protests two years ago in the United States, where thousands broke into the Capitol building in Washington. In both cases, they say, a playbook was used in which online groups, chats and social media sites played a central role.“Digital platforms were fundamental not only in the extreme right-wing domestic terrorism on Sunday, but also in the entire long process of online radicalization over the last 10 years in Brazil,” said Michele Prado, an independent researcher who studies digital movements and the Brazilian far right.She said that calls for violence have been “increasing exponentially from the last week of December.”She and other misinformation researchers have singled out Twitter and Telegram as playing a central role in organizing protests. In posts on Brazilian Telegram channels viewed by The New York Times, there were open calls for violence against the left-wing Brazilian politicians and their families. There were also addresses of government offices for protesters to attack.In one image, which The Times found on more than a dozen Telegram channels, there was a call for “patriots” to gather in Brasília on Sunday to “mark a new day” of independence. Underneath many of the posters were details of gathering times for protesters.The hashtag “Festa da Selma” was also widely spread on Twitter, including by far-right extremists who had previously been banned from the platform, Ms. Prado said.A military police officer at a camp of Bolsonaro supporters in front of an Army facility on Monday.Dado Galdieri for The New York TimesIn the months since Elon Musk took over Twitter, far-right figures from around the world have had their accounts reinstated as a general amnesty unless they violated rules again. Ms. Prado said that misinformation researchers in Brazil have been reporting the accounts to Twitter in hopes that the company takes action.Twitter and Telegram did not respond to requests for comment.Meta, the parent company of Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, said that the attacks Sunday were a “violating event” and that the company was removing content on its platforms that supported or praised the attacks on government buildings in Brazil.The protesters in Brazil and those in the United States were inspired by the same extremist ideas and conspiracy theories and were both radicalized online, Ms. Prado said. In both cases, she added, social media played a crucial role in organizing violent attacks. More

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    Revisited – Jon Ronson on Alex Jones: Politics Weekly America podcast

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    Politics Weekly America is taking a break. So this week, Jonathan Freedland revisits the conversation he had in April with the journalist and film-maker Jon Ronson about the far-right conspiracy theorist Alex Jones

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