“It Was a Cold and Calculating Night”: Tognolli on Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt


Decorative mosaic, Conjunto Nacional (1958) office block and shopping mall, Avenida Paulista at R. Consolação, São Paulo, Brazil.

All lies and jest
Still, a man hears what he wants to hear
and disregards the rest

It was in 1989 that President Bush the Elder went on TV in the Oval Office and showed reporters a rock of crack cocaine that he said had been “confiscated a few days ago by DEA agents in a park next to the WhiteHouse.” Washington Post reporters uncovered the face: DEA agents had been dispatched to the park by Bush and asked to locate some crack. They found none. They had to go buy some for $2,400 in a park far from the White House.

São Paulo journalist Cláudio Tognolli has reportedly been targeted for intimidation because of his reporting and opining.

But why?

What has the man written and reported, and who objects to it?

Journalists do get killed down here because of what they do for a living. The very least we can do for these colleagues of ours is let them know that the eyes of Brooklyn are upon them. Pra inglês ver.

Here, to start with, is a piece the gentleman wrote for the Observatório da Imprensa in May 2006. First thing I could google up.

I hope the OI will not mind me translating an excerpt pra inglês ver. I have no fins lucrativos.

One point here being to explore the questions raised by a case known here in Brazil as Operation Gutenberg. (Whether a case file with that name actually exists in the archives of the federal police seems to be a question for debate. It was Veja magazine’s “Radar” column that broke the story, to start with. And Veja tends to lie.)

In which journalists allegedly accepted money from the subjects of coverage for favorable coverage of the subjects of that coverage — or to ratfink the adversaries of the people paying their supplemental salary.

The other being an assault on the kind of Manichaean allegories about crime and corruption in Brazil perpetuated by the likes of Larry Rohter and the banda podre (so to speak) of the Associated Press.

The piece is bit cabeça, and a bit thorny to translate, but I have come to a lot of similar conclusions myself, though this is actually the first I have read of Tognolli’s work.

(I am still working on a diverse and representative list of local journalists I consider worth reading, part of the famous NMM “open-source Bloomberg box” project, South American fork.)

Does that mean I should worry that someone is going to shoot up my place of work one of these days? Heavy breathers on the telephone?

I do get some pretty weird heavy-breathing e-mails at times, which I sometimes share with you — so long as they don’t involve my mother, the clap, and the Seventh Fleet.

Anyway, draft-quality translation to the file, as always, so no wagering:

Dantas, PCC e o preço da metáfora

Dantas, the PCC and the price of metaphor

The setting: The May 2006 PCC-PM wars.

Estamos numa noite fria e calculista, de chuva horizontal. O sítio já era sugestivo pelo nome: “Estrada das Lágrimas”. Bem ao lado do 95º Distrito Policial, não muito longe da Via Anchieta, em São Paulo. Nivelam seus destinos, ali, PMs intimoratos e um delegado de barriga pontuda, que se lhe sai por debaixo do colete a prova de balas. Descem do carro este repórter, mais Guilherme Bentana, da TV Record, e o ubíquo Karl Penhaul, da CNN – que mora na Colômbia, nasceu no interior da Inglaterra e acaba de chegar de Bagdá. Delegado e PMs se assustam com Karl, que é careca ao osso e tem uma aparência de holigan. O delegado não esperou para estudar o rosto de Karl e logo mostrou ser homem de gatilho fácil – mas nada que um “boa noite” não tivesse desarmado, deveras.

It was a cold and calculating night of wind-whipped rain. The location had a suggestive name: “The Highway of Tears.” Right near the 95th Police District, not far from the Via Anchieta in São Paulo. There, hulking military police troopers and a precinct captain with a belly that bulged out from under his bulletproof vest were contemplating their collective fate. Getting out of the car was this reporter, along with Bentana of TV Record and the ubiquitous Karl Penhaul of CNN — who lives in Colombia, was born in England and had just gotten in from Baghdad. The precinct captain and troopers are startled at the appearance of Karl, who is bald to the bone and looks like a British soccer hooligan. The precinct captain takes one look at Karl’s face and shows himself to be a man with a hair-trigger temper — which a mere “good evening” might have been enough to set off.

Há cinco anos recebi em casa Kirk Semple, do New York Times, ora em Bagdá, que veio cobrir o PCC. Bastou uma entrevista de Kirk com o então homem forte do PCC, Geleião, para que este se lhe encomendasse a morte. Kirk seria assassinado na porta de seu hotel, nas proximidades da Rua Sílvia, na zona sul de São Paulo. Marcola encomendou a morte de Kirk a Geleião, alegando que o gringo “era da CIA”. A morte era encomendada num fax, interceptado pelo promotor Márcio Sérgio Christino, o primeiro a encarar o PCC.

Five years ago I invited Kirk Semple of the New York Times, who now works out of Baghdad, to my house. He was here to cover the PCC criminal organization. All it took was one interview with the strong man of the PCC at the time, “Big Jelly,” for the latter to put a price on Semple’s head. Kirk was to be hit at the entrance to his hotel near Sílvia Street in the Southern District of São Paulo. Marcola recommended to Big Jelly that Kirk be killed, alleging the gringo was “from the CIA.” The order came in a fax that was intercepted by prosecutor Márcio Sérgio Christino, the first to take on the PCC.

Kirk me telefonou de Bagdá e pediu para que ciceroneasse Karl Penhaul. Guilherme Bentana conduziu Karl aos desvãos do crime. Franqueou acesso para Karl falar com narcotraficantes. Mostrou-lhe a “tiragem” do Deic. A CNN citou Bentana em cadeia mundial. A Record mostrou Karl nas favelas com Bentana. Não sei como: Karl Penhaul trouxe um número de telefone que lhe franqueou acesso a uma voz que era “mesmo” a de Marcola. Mas a voz que um dos melhores jornalistas do Brasil, o Roberto Cabrini, mostrou na TV Bandeirantes como sendo a de Marcola em entrevista exclusiva, não “batia” com aquela ouvida por outros jornalistas, como Karl Penhaul. A pergunta é: quantos Marcolas estão falando por aí?

Kirk had phoned me from Baghdad and asked me to show Penhaul around. Bentana showed Penhaul around the scene of the crime [during the PCC-PM wars of May 2006 –Ed.]. He got him access to the narcotraffickers. He showed him the “circulation” of DEIC [?]. CNN quoted Bentana on its international network. TV Record showed Karl in the shantytowns with Bentana. I don’t know how he got it, but Penhaul had a phone number that put him in touch with a voice that was supposedly “really” the voice of Marcola. And yet the voice that one of the best journalists in Brazil, Roberto Cabrini, presented on TV Bandeirantes as the “real” voice of Marcola did not match the voice heard by other journalists, such as Penhaul.

The question being: How many Marcolas were out there talking?

Roberto Cabrini, uma grife glamurosa do jornalismo, sempre confiabilíssimo, deve uma explicação cosmética, quase gramatical: por que em sua entrevista não faz uso de vocativos. Por que não chama Marcola pelo nome em nenhum instante. Já disseram que seria porque Marcola não gosta desse apelido, e gosta mesmo é de ser chamado “M1”. Uai, por que Cabrini não usou o “M1” no ar?

Cabrini, a glamorous journalistic brand name who has always been highly trustworthy, provided a face-saving, language-parsing explanation: He said that in his interview, he did not use the vocative. That is, he never addressed Marcola by name in the interview. They said it was because “Marcola” does not like that nickname, preferring to be known as “M1.” Yeah, so? So why did not Cabrini not refer to him as M1 on the air?

That is to say, “I never represented that it was actually Marcola I was talking to.” I gather.

Add to our Ricardo Rocha memorial file of possible logic-chopping apologias pro [pseudojournalism] suo.

Falácia lógica

Logical fallacy

Estamos naqueles momentos em que vale tudo. Tudo mesmo. A revista Veja, por exemplo, passou quase dois anos atacando o competente e agressivo Leonardo Attuch, da IstoÉ Dinheiro, que se lhes processa agora, devido a supostas “relações espúrias” que o jornalista manteria pela sua proximidade de Daniel Dantas, do Banco Opportunity. O não menos competente e não menos agressivo Marcio Aith, o homem que deu o furo dos grampos da Kroll contratada por Dantas, revela em Veja que fez uso do mesmo Dantas para obter a lista com nomes de políticos, como o presidente Lula, que manteriam contas em dólar no exterior.

We are living through one of those moments in history when anything goes. And I mean anything. Veja magazine, for example, spent nearly two years attacking the competent and aggressive Leonardo Attuch of IstoÉ Dinheiro, who is suing them now over supposed “spurious relations” he had as a result of his close ties with Daniel Dantas of the Opportunity Bank.

I have always had a very, very bad impression of Attuch myself, simply judging from the quality of his work as published, but not knowing enough about the background to that published work.

One of these days I am going to read his Mendes Junior hagiography — he co-authored an Ayn Rand-cribbed defense of the Brazilian public works contracting sector with the CEO of that firm — if I can find a cheap copy at a sebo.

He seems to spend more time serving personal agendas and authoring slanted business autohagiographies by proxy than serving the reader. See, for example,

Is Mr. Tognholli being ironic here, as when he cites the “trustworthiness” of the Cabrini journalistic brand? I will have to look more into that specific case.

If I can get my hands on the back story in the archives.

It’s not like I can just use my public library card the way I can in Brooklyn, to look up Larry Rohter’s back catalogue, here in São Paulo.

And why is that? Give me a few billion, I was telling a friend last night over beers at the boteco, and I would build Brazil a big old gnarly, hypermodern public library system. Just for being an extremely interesting place with many fine people in it. Like my wife.

Unlike Bill Gates, however, I would not insist that those public libraries use my information-technology products.

My bequest would read: “Choose the best technology for the best price you can get, and make sure local nerds get job experience working on it.”

All I want out of the deal is to have a local public library that is at least as good as the one in Brooklyn. I do mean to try to live here, you know.

The no less competent and agressive Marcio Aith, the man who broke the story about Dantas hiring Kroll to do wiretaps, tells Veja he used Dantas’ name to obtain a list containing the names of politicians, such as president Lula, who allegedly maintained dollar-denominated offshore bank accounts.

Another person named in that Veja “scoop” was the head of the federal police, Paulo Lacerda, who was recently named to head ABIN, the “Brazilian CIA.”

No fundo é a mesma desfaçatez excogitada, a saber: o “meu Marcola” é mais veraz que o “seu Marcola”, e você será bandido só quando você falar com Daniel Dantas, porque, quando for minha vez de falar com Dantas, o que faço merece o nome de “furaço”. Mas estamos no ponto em que todo o publicado já virou uma abstração – e quem lembra das coisas volta e meia é lembrado dentro daquilo que Max Weber chamava de “pestilência metodológica”. Por outra: foi neste Observatório que salientamos, há muito tempo, a existência de uma “Operação Gutenberg”, ainda em segredo de Justiça, em que se apurava suposta venda de reportagens, jamais obviamente publicadas.

At bottom, it’s the same sort of calculated shamelessness, to wit: “My friend Marcola” would be more truthful than “Mr. Marcola.” You only become a bandit when you go to talk to Dantas. I say this because when it comes my turn to talk with the banker, what I will publish will deserve the name of a “scoop.” But we have come to the point at which everything that gets published has already become a sort of abstraction — and if you have a decent memory, you are reminded now and again of what Max Weber called “methodological pestilence.”

On the other hand, we here at the Observatory were the first to point out, some time ago, the existence of “Operation Gutenberg,” which is still sealed by the courts, and is looking into the alleged selling of journalistic coverage, which obviously were never published.

A existência dessa operação foi levada a conhecimento de um punhado de jornalistas de mercado, e de repórteres bissextos, exatamente a 10 de setembro de 2004, quando a Abin abriu suas portas para a imprensa. Deste então, também bissextamente, Veja vindicava genuflexamente da PF a ultimação dessa operação. Se esta Operação Gutenberg continuar (e continua), que sejam postos nela não só a IstoÉ, mas também agora a Veja “de Daniel Dantas” e a CartaCapital “de Demarco e Jerreissati”, como costumam referir-se uns aos outros os repórteres dessas publicações litigantes, não só na busca de furos, mas sobretudo agora litigantes ad hominem – (um Argumentum ad hominem , do latim “argumento contra a pessoa” é falácia lógica identificada quando alguém responde a algum argumento com uma crítica a quem fez o argumento; ou seja, não se questiona o argumento, mas sim quem o fez).

The existence of this operation was made known to a handful of business journalists and occasional reporters on September 10, 2004, when ABIN opened its doors to the press. Since then, also only very occasionally, Veja magazine has obsequiously defended the federal police for having shut down that investigation. If this probe is to continue (and it is continuing), let it take note not only of IstoÉ magazine [where Attuch works], but also Veja magazine “owned by Daniel Dantas” and a CartaCapital magazine “owned by Demarco and Jerreissati,” as journalists from the warring newsweeklies tend to slam each other during their battles for exclusive stories, transforming themselves, more than anything else, into masters of the art of ad hominen attacks (… the logical fallacy of attacking the person who proposes the argument rather than than the argument itself …)

I kind of tend to feel that way about Amorim, late of CC, it’s true, but CC is still a magazine I pointedly buy, based simply on its reasonably high Journalism 1.0 content.

It is far from being the only newsweekly you need, but it hardly ever — almost never, as far is I can tell — bullshits me, and it is honest enough about where it is coming from.

Veja, on the other hand — if a copy brushes my sleeve, I burn the shirt. And summon someone to perform a macumba to dispel the urucubaca. Ugh.

Medo e angústia

Fear, uncertainty and doubt

Susan Sontag, quando ficou com câncer, escreveu A Doença como Metáfora, seguido de A Aids como Metáfora. Revelava que os crentes das metáforas de que o câncer poderia ser fruto de “mal olhado”, “sistema nervoso”, “má alimentação”, acabavam buscando tratamentos alternativos, “energéticos”, “espirituais”, mesmo holísticos, que acabam conduzindo estes pacientes ao túmulo.

When Susan Sontag got cancer, she wrote Illness as Metaphor, followed by AIDS as Metaphor. She revealed that people who believe in such metaphors as cancer being caused by the “evil eye,” “the nervous system,” “poor nutrition,” wind up seeking alternative treatments that are “energetic,” “spiritual,” even holistic, which wind up sending these patients to their graves.

A metáfora tem um preço. O preço da metáfora é a eterna vigilância, nota Richard Lewontin, geneticista de Harvard. O que isso tem a ver com Daniel Dantas e PCC? Tudo. Naquelas noite frias e calculistas de chuva horizontal, quando este repórter, mais Karl Penhaul, da CNN, mais Guilherme Bentana, da Record, fomos ver o PCC de perto nas favelas, e de perto os policiais que tentavam conter os ataques, com seus parcos coletes, a cidade estava dividida numa grande metáfora: de um lado os homens do bem, de outro os homens do mal. Obviamente cada um via as coisas como podia ver (Stefan Zweig via no mapa do Brasil o formato de uma harpa lírica, e Lima Barreto via no mapa do Brasil o desenho de um presunto). Mas o que sobrou foi a metáfora de dois exércitos litigantes: era a cidade dividida, era a São Paulo milenarista e milenarizada, sobretudo pela mídia.

Metaphors have costs. The price of metaphor is eternal vigilance, as Harvard geneticist Richard Lewontin remarks. But what does that have to do with Dantas and the PCC? Everything.

On that cold and calculating night of wind-whipped rain when this reporter, along with Bentana of Record and Penhaul of CNN, went to observe the PCC firsthand in the shantytowns, and the cops who were trying to contain the PCC attacks, with bulletproof vests few and far between, the city was split into an overarching metaphor: On one side, the good guys, on the other, the bad guys. Naturally, each of us views things as best we can (Stefan Zweig saw a lyric harp in the map of Brazil where Lima Barreto saw the outline of a ham). But what prevailed was the metaphor of two warring armies: it was a divided city, it was the eternal return of militaristic São Paulo, and the media did more than anyone to promote this myth.

O que agora se tenta mostrar é que certamente não há pessoas de bem no PCC, mas que certamente há pessoas do mal dentro das forças do bem, vulgo polícia. A mídia só vai se superar quando revelar os reais motivos que levaram o PCC ao ataque terrorista: corrupção policial, torturas. Vamos pagar o preço caro da metáfora bipolar. E pior: vamos ter de lidar com a ideologização política do episósdio. (Já no sábado dos ataques, um site tucano explicava que os ataques terroristas haviam sido gerados pela contaminação do preso mal tratado pela “falta de ética do PT ladrão no poder”.)

What I want to argue now is that while there are certainly no good guys to be found in the PCC, there certainly are bad guys inside the forces of righteousness, commonly known as the police. The media is only going to abandon mythmaking for reality when it reports the real reasons for the terrorist attacks by the PCC: police corruption, torture.

We are going to pay a high price for this [Manichaean allegory]. And worse. We are going to have put up with the ideology-driven politicization of the episode. (On the Saturday of the attacks, a PSDB Web site was already explaining that the terrorist attacks were caused by a contamination of evil prisoners by “the lack of ethics of the Workers’ Party, thief of power!”)

See also

O filósofo Martin Heidegger gostava de separar medo da angústia. Medo se erige sobre um objeto real, e palpável, literal ou mesmo figurativamente. Angústia se erige sobre o nada. Num primeiro momento de terror, governantes mostram os objetos do medo: fotos de terroristas, armas apreendidas, sangue. Num segundo momento, some a figura do terrorista e só sobra a sua prática: terrorismo. É aí que entra a angústia: ela se erige sobre o nada. A invasão do Iraque foi a exploração da angústia, em cima de relatórios falsos. Usa-se a prática na exploração da angústia. Usa-se o ator na exploração do medo. O uso político dos ataques do PCC começarão a ocorrer quando passarmos a enxergar PCCs em todos os cantos, mesmo que eles não existem.

Martin Heidegger liked to distinguish fear from anxiety. Fear is based on a real, tangible object,whether literal or figurative. Anxiety has no basis. In the first moment of the terror attacks, government official displayed the totems of fear: Photos of terrorists, weapons apprehended, blood. Later, the figure of the terrorist in the flesh disappeared and only the concept of terrorism remained. That was where anxiety came in: Anxiety based on nothing at all. The invasion of Iraq was the product of anxiety, based on phony reports. The act is used to exploit anxiety. The actor is used to exploit fear. The political exploitation of the PCC attacks will begin when we start seeing PCCs in every corner, even where none exist.

Heidegger makes me anxious in this sense, I should disclose.

I prefer Charles Saunders Peirce, who makes a similar point using words of one or two syllables drawn from ordinary language. Dasein my ass.

Foi por isso que o filme A Bruxa de Blair fez tanto sucesso: não havia tubarão, Jason ou asassinos. Era o nada que exercia o terror . Nesse sentido, o medo está para a angústia assim como a nostalgia está para a melancolia. O nostálgico pensa “que saudades de minha namorada”. O melancólico indaga “como seria bom ter uma namorada”. Cabe à mídia regular e impedir isso: que nosso medo de objetos reais não seja transformado, política e ideologicamente, em angústia do nada.

This is why the film The Blair Witch Project was such a hit. There was no shark, Jason or hitmen. It was nothingness that terrorized the spectator. In that sense, fear is to anxiety as nostalgia is to melancholy. The nostalgic man thinks, “How I miss my old girlfriend!” The melancholy man thinks, “How I wish I had a girlfriend!”

It is the job of the mainstream news media to prevent this from happening: to prevent our fear of real danger from being transformed, politically and ideologically, into anxiety over nothing at all.

Parece que foi ontem

“It was twenty years ago today”

Gratuitious translator’s creative license used to squeeze in a gratuitous Beatles reference.

Foi em 1989 que o presidente Bush pai foi à TV e mostrou no Salão Oval da Casa Branca, aos repórteres, uma pedra de crack que havia sido “confiscada dias atrás por agentes da DEA num parque ao lado da Casa Branca”. Foram repórteres do Washington Post que mostraram a farsa: a pedido de Bush agentes do DEA se dirigiram ao Lafayette Park para tentar achar o crack. Não acharam. Tiveram de comprar por 2,4 mil dólares em um parque muito longe dali. Culpar o crack pela crise social e criminal, gerada pela reaganomics então tão recente, era a saída encontrada pela política neoliberal de Bush pai.

It was in 1989 that President Bush the Elder went on TV in the Oval Office and showed reporters a rock of crack cocaine that he said had been “confiscated a few days ago by DEA agents in a park next to the WhiteHouse.” Washington Post reporters uncovered the face: DEA agents had been dispatched to the park by Bush and asked to locate some crack. They found none. They have to buy some for $2,400 in a park far from the White House. Blaming crack for the social and law-enforcement crisis create by Reaganomics was the only solution Bush the Elder’s neoliberal policies could come up with.

“Drogas servem para aliviar a culpa coletiva. Como sociólogo, considero o pânico associado ao crack da década de 1980 uma variante de uma tradição americana. Em diferentes momentos de nossa história, as manchetes a respeito das drogas serviram para afugentar da consciência moral do país uma determinada classe de cidadãos maltratados”, diz o sociólogo Barry Glassner, guru espiritual do cineasta Michael Moore.

“Drugs serve to salve the collective sense of guilt. As a sociologist, I consider the crack panic of the 1980s a variant on a venerable American tradition. At various points in our history, headlines having to do with drugs have served to alienate an abused class of citizens from the social conscience of the nation,” says Barry Glassner, spiritual guro of Michael Moore.

Continua Glassner: “Por um momento consideremos o ocorrido no início da década de 1870 em São Francisco. Os trabalhadores chineses, indispensáveis na construção da estrada de ferro transcontinental durante a década anterior, tornaram-se supérfluos na opinião de grande parte da população branca. Devido à depressão econômica e aos 20 mil imigrantes chineses desempregados, os políticos, os jornalistas e os líderes sindicais apontaram as casa de ópio como uma prova da devassidão dos homens chineses. Em consequência, propuseram afastá-los de seus empregos e proibir a imigração. Na realidade, as casas de ópio, como os pubs ingleses, eram agradáveis lugares de encontro, onde os homens partilhavam histórias e poucos frequentadores se dedicavam ao consumo de ópio”.

Glassner continues: “Let us consider for a moment what took place at the beginning of the 1870s in San Francisco. Chinese laborers, indispensable to construction of the transcontinental railway in the previous decade, became superfluous in the opinion of most of the white population. Faced with an economic depression and the presence of 20,000 unemployed Chinese workers, politicians, journalists and union leaders pointed to the opiu den as proof of the moral decadence of the Chinese. As a consequence, they proposed firing them from their jobs and prohibiting immigration. In reality, opium dens, like English pubs, were pleasant places to meet up, where men swapped stories and few customers indulged in opium.”

Isso não é novidade. No século 19, por exemplo, o Times londrino satanizava em suas manchetes o bacilo de Koch, sem discutir as condições sociais, paupérrimas, que levavam à contração da tuberculose. Vejamos alguns números, obviamente não constantes das reportagens que satanizavam o bacilo: no princípio do século 19 havia na Inglaterra apenas uma aglomeração com mais de cem mil habitantes, Londres. São 33 delas na véspera do século 20. O centro dos lanifícios, Leeds, passa de 53 mil habitantes, em 1801, para 123 mil em 1831 e 430 mil, em 1900. No mesmo período, Birmigham passa de 73 mil habitantes para 200 mil e, depois, para 760 mil residentes. Os dias de trabalho são de 16 horas. A carga semanal é de 64 horas. Trabalha-se na fábrica seis dias seguidos. A média de trabalhadores morando numa casa é de 26. Os salários decaem de 16 shillings por semana, em 1821, para 6 shillings, em 1830. Nesse grupo, a esperança de vida é inferior aos 40 anos. Contratam-se para o trabalho nos lanifícios crianças de quatro, nove e sete anos de idade. É nesse quadro social que brota a tuberculose. Mas, para o Times, a culpa estava no bacilo de Koch.

There is nothing new about this. In the 19th century, for example, the Times of London demonized in its headlines the Koch bacillus, without dealing with the dreadful poverty that made people susceptible to tuberculosis. Let’s look at a few numbers, which obviously do not come from the reporting that demonized the disease: At the outset of the 19th century, England had only one large city with more than 100,000 inhabitants. London. The center of the wool industry, Leeds, grew from 53,000 inhabitants in 1801 to 123,000 in 1831 and 430,000 in 1900. In the same period, Birmingham grew from 73,000 to 200,000 and then 760,000 inhabitants. The working day was 16 hours. The weekly total was 64 hours. The work week was seven days. The average number of persons living in a house was 26. Salaries fell from 16 schillings a week in 1821 to 6 schillings, in 1830. The life expectancy of this group was less than 40 years. The textile industry hired children of four, nine and seven years of age. It was in this social environment that tubercolosis appeared. But to the Times, the real culprit was the Koch bacillus.

Cabe à mídia tomar o cuidado com as metáforas que vai aceitar consumir. As provas de que corremos o risco de engolir mentiras podem ser vistas na íntegra do relatório final da CPI do Sistema Penal, concluída em São Paulo, dez anos atrás. Parece que o relatório foi escrito ontem, porque nada se fez.

The media should take care with the metaphors is decides to endorse. Evidence that we run the risk of swallowing lies can be glimpsed in the final report of the congressional commission of inquiry on the prison system of São Paulo, completed 10 years ago. It seems to have been written yesterday, because nothing has changed.

There is a whole industry devoted to perpetuating Manichean allegories these days. (Hearing) Global O Globo Voices Online, over there at the Roberto “J’Accuse” Mangabeira Unger Memorial School of Law at Harvard University.

See, for example,

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