Bolsonaro's Fans Stage Insurrection in Brazil - The Monday AM Quickie 1/9/23

Did you miss the January 6 anniversary? Well cast your eyes on Brazil, where the exact same thing is happening right now! Bolsonaro, of course, is hiding in Florida.  - Jack

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Bolsonaristas Stage Their Own Idiotic Insurrection On Brazil's Government

Supporters of ousted former President Jair Bolsonaro rioted in the streets of Brazil's capital Brasília on Sunday, going as far as to re-enact their own version of the U.S.'s January 6 riots when they stormed into government buildings and demanded that the military reinstall Bolsonaro to power.

The military, however, helped Brazilian law enforcement retake control of the buildings and arrested hundreds of demonstrators. Still, the size, ferocity and impact of the protests is incredibly concerning. Bolsonaro himself is still on his weird Florida Man tour of the Sunshine State, but his refusal to unequivocally concede the election has feueled supporters grievances and conspiracies that Brazil's lawfully elected President Lula da Silva "stole" the election.

“We always said we would not give up,” one protester declared as he filmed himself among hundreds of protesters pushing into the Capitol building. “Congress is ours. We are in power.”

Lula, who was not in the capital during the riots, returned on Sunday evening and made a statement that in no uncertain terms state who he believed was responsible.

Per the Times:

Mr. Bolsonaro “triggered this,” [Lula] said in an address to the nation. “He spurred attacks on the three powers [Brazil's whenever he could. This is also his responsibility.”

And it's pretty clear at every level where these protests fit in the global trend of right-wing insurrection. Anecdotally, friend of mine who's an extremism watchdog says that the far-right Telegram scene and QAnon-linked groups are cheering on the Bolsonaristas every step of the way. Additionally, the groups' specific targeting of the media was present in Brazil too:

As of now, the protests are quelled. But it seems certain that they won't be going away for long, and that the right wing won't stop trying to take control by force.

Kevin McCarthy Finally Gets His Gavel

Well, he had to beg for it, and it almost started a "fight," but Kevin McCarthy will be the next Speaker of the House, after five days and 15 different floor votes. The final vote all came down to Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz, one of McCarthy's biggest antagonists on the ultraconservative bench that held off his Speakership, who made McCarthy literally beg him in order to change his vote to "present" and allow McCarthy to win the election. The next battle (besides what we're talking about in the next story) is the rules package, which the Gaetz wing made sure would included a measure that allows a single Rep. to force a “motion to vacate” the speakership, effectively meaning anyone in Congress can call for McCarthy's head at any time. There are a bunch of other provisions that limit McCarthy's power, so it's really anyone's guess how long he'll actually last.

Republicans Planning to Weaponize House Against FBI and DOJ

Weak speaker or not, the GOP now controls the House. And they're planning to do basically what we expected with it – use its power to launch politically motivated investigations into nonpartisan government agencies that they feel have targeted Conservatives (largely because said Conservatives committed crimes). Here's the topline per the Times:

Newly empowered House Republicans are preparing a wide-ranging investigation into law enforcement and national security agencies, raising the prospect of politically charged fights with the Biden administration over access to sensitive information like highly classified intelligence and the details of continuing criminal inquiries by the Justice Department.

The House plans to vote this week on a resolution to create a special Judiciary subcommittee on what it calls the “weaponization of the federal government,” a topic that Republicans have signaled could include reviewing investigations into former President Donald J. Trump.

And guess who will lead said committee? That's right – Jim Jordan, another of the hard-right holdouts who held up McCarthy's speakership. Seems like this whole farce was part of the deal that got him the gavel.


  • New, Highly Transmissible Variant Rears its Head Sure, its name sounds like Elon Musk's next child, but this thing means business: XB.1.5 accounts for 27% of all U.S. cases right now, per the CDC. via WaPo.
  • Biden Visits Southern Border to Do PR For Immigration Crackdown Immigration and migrant aid groups say his new policies are brutal, Republicans say they're not brutal enough. via NYT.
  • 38 People Die in Senegal Bus Crash Just horrific – the government has declared three days of mourning after one of the deadliest accidents in years. via WaPo.
  • Ukraine War Now Attracting Russian-Hating Volunteers From All Over There are many, many people with a grudge to settle with Russia, and Ukraine is welcoming them in. via NYT.



Number of people without power as of Sunday afternoon in California, according to, after torrential storms knocked out power for hundreds of thousands across the state this weekend.


1/6: Sam hosts author Cory Doctorow to discuss his recent book Chokepoint Capitalism: How Big Tech and Big Content Captured Creative Labor Markets and How We'll Win Them Back.


Democrats Losses In New York Highlight MAJOR Problem

The statewide party is in disarray.

Proud Boy Initiation Rituals Are Just Embarrassing

Oh my god they're still doing this crap?


“XBB did not evolve because people were vaccinated. The way it evolved, let’s be straight, is because people were infected by multiple viruses at the same time.”

– Vaughn Cooper, a professor of evolutionary biology at the University of Pittsburgh, on the new highly transmissible strain of COVID.  

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