‘On the brink’: Musk confirms X will defy court order to block ‘certain’ accounts in ‘totalitarian’ nation

Brazil is “on the brink” of becoming a “dictatorship,” according to independent journalist Michael Shellenberger.

Reporting from the South American nation, Shellenberger warned, “President Lula da Silva is participating in the push toward totalitarianism.”

“I’m reporting to you from Brazil, where a dramatic series of events are underway,” he reported on Saturday evening. “At 5:52 pm Eastern Time, today, April 6, 2024, X corporation, formerly known as Twitter, announced that a Brazilian court had forced it to ‘block certain popular accounts in Brazil.’”

“Then, less than one hour later, the owner of X, [Elon Musk] announced that X would defy the court’s order, and lift all restrictions,” Shellenberger stated.

“As a result,” he quoted Musk as saying, “we will probably lose all revenue in Brazil and have to shut down our office there. But principles matter more than profit.”

“At any moment, Brazil’s Supreme Court could shut off all access to X/Twitter for the people of Brazil,” Shellenberger wrote.

“It is not an exaggeration to say that Brazil is on the brink of dictatorship at the hands of a totalitarian Supreme Court Justice named Alexandre de Moraes.”

Back in January, de Moraes praised the appointment of a Brazilian Minister of Justice and Public Security.

“Congratulations to Minister Ricardo Lewandowski for the new and honorable position of Minister of Justice and Public Security,” the justice wrote. “Exemplary judge, brilliant jurist, respected professor and, above all, a person with incomparable public spirit and prepared for this new challenge. I wish much success.”

On Friday, Musk replied to the post, asking de Moraes, “Why are you demanding so much censorship in Brazil?”

“President Lula da Silva is participating in the push toward totalitarianism,” Shellenberger wrote. “Since taking office, Lula has massively increased government funding of the mainstream news media, most of which are encouraging increased censorship.”

As BizPac Review previously reported, Tucker Carlson, in March, accused President Biden of helping to “install” Lula’s “pro-Chinese government in Brazil.”

Once in power, Carlson said, Lula “immediately shut down opposition media and began arresting dissidents.”

“What Lula and de Moraes are doing is an outrageous violation of Brazil’s constitution and the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights,” Shellenberger stated on Saturday.

“At this moment, Brazil is not yet a dictatorship. It still has elections and the Brazilian people have other means at their disposal to confront authoritarianism,” he said. “But the Federal Supreme Court and the Superior Electoral Court are directly [interfering] in those elections through censorship.”

“Three days ago I published the Twitter Files for Brazil,” the journalist continued. “They show that Moraes has violated the Brazilian Constitution.”

Shellenberger explains:

Moraes illegally demanded that Twitter reveal private information about Twitter users who used hashtags he considered inappropriate. He demanded access to Twitter’s internal data, violating the platform’s policy. He censored, on his own initiative and without any respect for due process, posts on Twitter by parliamentarians from the Brazilian Congress. And Moraes tried to turn Twitter’s content moderation policies into a weapon against supporters of then-president Jair Bolsonaro.

The Twitter Files also revealed that Google, Facebook, Uber, WhatsApp and Instagram betrayed the people of Brazil. If such evidence is proven, the executives of these companies behaved like cowards: they provided the Brazilian government with personal registration data and telephone numbers without a court order and, therefore, violating the law. When Twitter refused to provide Brazilian authorities with private user information, including direct messages, the government attempted to sue Twitter’s top Brazilian lawyer.

Shellenberger said the Brazilian “professors, journalists and respected lawyers” he has spoken with “are shocked by what is happening.”

“They told me that they are afraid to speak their mind and that the Lula government is complicit in creating this climate of fear,” he said.

“But I can say things that many Brazilians do not feel safe saying: Alexandre de Moraes is a tyrant,” Shellenberger wrote. “And the only way to deal with tyrants is to confront them.”

“It is up to Brazil’s senators to confront the tyrant,” the journalist concluded. :And it is up to the people of Brazil to demand that their senators do so.”

On Sunday morning, Musk confirmed Shellenberger’s reporting.

“This is all accurate,” he stated.

“Coming shortly, X will publish everything demanded by [Alexandre de Moraes] and how those requests violate Brazilian law,” Musk later vowed. “This judge has brazenly and repeatedly betrayed the constitution and people of Brazil. He should resign or be impeached.

“Shame @Alexandre, shame.”

 

 

 

Melissa Fine

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