On November 13, 2018, president-elect Jair Bolsonaro met with justice Rosa Weber at the Supreme Court, where she held the presidency of the Superior Electoral Court. Ignoring the courtesy of the visit, the hostess greeted the future head of the executive branch with a mix of irony and sheer rudeness. She presented the victorious candidate with a copy of the Federal Constitution. Bolsonaro could have returned the “kindness” during Rosa Weber’s farewell party as, since January 2019, she had been engaged in the squad who controls the Supreme Court and beats up the Constitution as they please.
With plenty of time on her hands now, the former justice can devote her days to repeatedly gazing on Article 142 of the Magna Carta – a term still used by the “Superjustices”. “It is incumbent upon the Supreme Court, preeminently, to guard the Constitution.” For months, each line of this set of laws currently in force was scrutinized by the constitutional framers until the final text was approved in 1988. Not a single word is there by accident. The term “preeminently,” for example, defines exactly what the role of the Supreme Court is: to ensure that the Magna Carta is preserved and enforced.
What was supposed to be a constitutional court no longer exists – it has been replaced with a political-judicial monstrosity that deliberates on absolutely everything and, since the day of its inauguration, has been favoring the government of the currently former convict they freed from prison. According to the official Constitution, only cases involving those with the right to special jurisdiction should enter the agenda of the Supreme Court. In Brazil, it’s the “kings in robes” who hold the power to determine the fate of individuals, organizations, sports clubs, supporters, and even WhatsApp groups.
Finally upset with the drama experienced by the crowd arrested on January 8, the president of the Brazilian Bar Association (OAB) of the Federal District, Délio Lins e Silva Jr, accused the Supreme Court of turning itself into a criminal court. Indeed, it did, as justice Alexandre de Moraes proudly declared on December 12 in an interview with newspaper Folha de S. Paulo. “I have a criminal docket today with almost 2,000 cases,” boasted Moares, holder of the world record for “Simultaneously Ongoing Illegal Inquiries”. He went on: “I would say that few criminal courts in the country hold similar number.”
The interviewer wanted to know when the “End of the World” inquiry (an investigation on alleged threats to national security, such as anti-democratic acts and the spread of fake news), which has been ongoing for almost five years, would be concluded. “It ends when it ends,” retorted Moraes, uttering an expression often used by soccer coaches, which illustrates the arbitrariness of his actions. The abolition of deadlines for the secret investigations he promotes is just further evidence that the Constitution has been replaced by a set of norms rewritten or manufactured according to the conveniences and moods of the “G9” (the nine justices currently in office at the Supreme Court).
The 1988 Constitution established that the executive, legislative, and judicial branches are equal and must coexist in harmony. However, acting as if they were constitutional framers, the justices decided, just over the last two years, that the judicial branch is “more equal than the others.” “We already have in place a semi-presidentialism controlled by a moderating power that is now exercised by the Supreme Court,” justice Dias Toffoli stated in November 2021, as he passed through Lisbon, Portugal. “Just check this whole period of the pandemic.” The moderating power was born at the beginning of the reign of Dom Pedro I and died with the Proclamation of the Republic. According to Toffoli, it has been resurrected with the arrival of a Chinese virus.
Days after the first shipment of coronaviruses got to Brazil, the “Judicial Dream Team” entered the court and kept president Bolsonaro from addressing the issue himself. After countless disastrous decisions, the Supreme Court held him accountable for 700 thousand deaths, proclaimed itself winner, and continued to play new matches in order to achieve victories in other territories. In addition, the Congress leadership, infested with potential defendants from the Eminent Court, has learned to kneel before their potential judges. An incestuous relationship with the executive branch is enough to ensure that the Supreme Court commands the war that, to “save” democracy and the rule of law, first needs to annihilate them.
Enquanto isso chegamos a cerca de 700 mil mortos pela COVID… Quantas mortes teriam sido evitadas se não houvesse corrupção na compra das vacinas? pic.twitter.com/3trMMuJNoJ— O Patriota (@obarretto) December 18, 2023
“The Court has undergone a process of ascent and has become a political power in the last five years,” acknowledges its currently presiding justice, Luís Roberto Barroso. The outbreak of patriotism that infected the court was caused by the realization that Brazil was “threatened by a wave of authoritarianism.” This assertion translates as: it was necessary to thwart the possible re-election of Jair Bolsonaro, and the initial step would be to choose a candidate for the task. Due to lack of options, the justices chose Lula. To rescue him from his prison cell, justice Edson Fachin made up the “Postal Code Law” – which determined that the case couldn’t have been trialed in the city of Curitiba, state of Paraná, and thus nullified the sentence. Alexandre de Moraes was then assigned to consummate the retake of the Planalto Palace. Bearing no remorse, he ruled against what he had previously defended (based on a pile of books on Constitutional Law). As justice Barroso stated: “Elections can’t be won, they must be seized.” Even babies know that the Supreme Court and the Superior Electoral Court have done things that even God doubts. But what matters is that their mission was accomplished. “We defeated Bolsonarism,” celebrated Barroso at a festival promoted by the Communist Party of Brazil (PCdoB).
Over 2023, the Supreme Court did everything to help its elected associate to survive in the government. At the beginning of the year, justice Ricardo Lewandowski, now retired, revived the “Zero Unemployment” program for the “Comradeship” by allowing political appointments to fill positions in state-owned companies. The “comradery” criterion had been abolished in 2016 when Congress, despite the Workers’ Party members voting against it, approved the State-Owned Companies Law. In September, justice Dias Toffoli deemed “worthless” the evidence against Lula and Odebrecht obtained seven years ago by Operation Car Wash. As a bonus, he also threw out the multitude of evidence stored in the contractor’s “bribery department”. In the sentence, Toffoli made a great effort to show that he had not yet paid off the judicial robe he had received: he qualified the arrest of his former chief as a “historical mistake” and pretended to see in Operation Car Wash “a setup, the result of a dominance agenda by public agents whose goal was to conquer the Brazilian state.”
The feebleness of the leftist bench in Congress led the president to reach out to the Supreme Court whenever he suffers a significant defeat. Currently, to circumvent the successive overthrows in the Senate of presidential vetoes, Lula plans to have the temporal landmark – endorsed by the representatives of the people – annulled at the Supreme Court. If they decide that Brazil should be returned to the descendants of those who lived here in 1500, the omniscient justices will amputate another section of the Constitution. A small thing for those who have already buried even the unchangeable constitutional clauses and rules in force since the Roman Empire.
Always in defense of democracy, imaginarily threatened by Bolsonarists — who tried to camouflage the liberty-depriving acts of January 8 by recruiting cotton candy vendors, sick septuagenarians, and even an autistic person —, Alexandre de Moraes keeps about 1,500 Brazilian citizens imprisoned or tethered to ankle monitors. Determined to silence by fear those who dare to disagree with the consortium that brings together Lula and the Supreme Court, the justice created expedients such as the “announced death” penalty, life imprisonment, freezing of teenagers’ bank accounts, denial of access to social networks, trials conducted in batches, wholesale “guilty” verdicts, among other obscenities.
Thanks to Moraes’ actions: no country in the world has more political prisoners than Brazil; the figure of “the political exile” has been resurrected; and the burden of proof now falls on the accused. The first “coup plotters,” as the justice likes to call them – were sentenced to 17 years in prison and punished with million-dollar fines. None of that, not even the death of prisoner Clériston da Cunha, however, has been able to move the justice, who is simply devoid of compassion. Convinced that he has saved Brazil from a fascist dictatorship, he thinks he acted with leniency. This is shown in this excerpt from the interview published by Folha de S. Paulo:
“Five crimes have been committed. The sentences could reach over 40 years, almost 50 years in case they were maximum sentences. The largest, so far, has been only 17. However, and this is very important to underline, by a provision of Brazilian law, people can serve only one-sixth of the sentence in prison in these cases. That is, it does not reach three years, [but about] two years and eight months. Several defendants have been in prison for almost a year.”
Happy with what he did, he is already preparing for the municipal elections, another stage of the war he has been waging for five years against disseminators of fake news. Without showing any traces of remorse, he recalls that all the decisions he made had the endorsement of the other Supreme Court justices. Without blushing, he assures that the right to a broad defense and due legal process was fulfilled in all cases. “This is the greatest reason for satisfaction, showing that my conduct has been within constitutional parameters,” Moraes deliriously stated.
Enthusiastic about the results of the incestuous relationship between the executive and the judicial branches, the associates have already begun the New Year’s celebrations. A “fraternization dinner” at Luís Roberto Barroso’s house brought together president Lula, highlights of the first tier of the government, and nine justices. Amid his transition from the Ministry of Justice to the Supreme Court, Flávio Dino was also there. At dinner, the idea of celebrating on January 8 the first anniversary of what they consider “a historic victory of democracy” over Brazilian fascism came up.
If the revelers truly believed in their own speech, they would celebrate the historical feat in the streets throughout the country. Instead, they preferred to gather in the Senate building. They know that trying to turn January 8 into a new September 7, would just repeat the demoralizing fiasco of the latest Independence Day celebration in Brasília. The tribune would be crowded with “fathers of the nation”. However, none of them would be applauded since the corpse of Clériston da Cunha, lying in the Three Powers Square, cannot do so. The people simply wouldn’t attend.