Olavo de Carvalho
O Globo, May 3rd, 2003
The other day, in one of his columns, Carlos Heitor Cony said that almost all violence in Rio de Janeiro comes from drug trafficking. Deep down, everyone knows this. But not many grasp that just this fact is enough to refute, at its basis, the cliché that poverty causes crime. How can poverty spawn a billion-dollar business that buys arms in the Middle East in order to exchange them for 200 tons of cocaine annually from the FARC? What an amazing miracle of ex nihilo creation that would be! A profusion of books, films, articles and interviews bewilders the public in order to force upon them the belief in this miracle. But these disseminations themselves are no miracle: they can be explained by the ideological solidarity between drug traffickers and the caste of leftist intellectuals and artists, who are more or less willing instruments of a cynical operation of deception: nothing is more comfortable, for those who seek the destruction of society through violence and crime, than counting on a public relations team which keeps the real actors and beneficiaries of the destruction hidden and above suspicion via grandiloquent attacks at generic targets such as “poverty”, “exclusion”, and “social injustice”.
But some are not content with this. They go even further: they turn to the public who have paid to be fooled and blame them for everything:
“You among the middle class who read books and watch movies, are the exploiters, the ones to blame for the social exclusion that forces the humiliated and offended into criminality.”
The reaction among the audience shows that the blow has landed on the solar plexus: people who wouldn’t hurt a fly walk out feeling guilty for having a car, a house and a job in a country in which so many excluded people, because of their lack of the minimum resources for a dignified life, are forced – poor fellows! – to spend fortunes on cocaine in Colombia in order to resell it to Brazilian children at the gates of their schools.
The stereotype, condensed into Rio’s image of the impoverished hill neighborhoods at the edge of the wealthy city, has become deeply rooted in the soul of the ordinary citizen, who, without remembering having done anything wrong, suddenly discovers himself, according to the prophets of the media and of show business, to be guilty of the most heinous of crimes: social injustice.
And no one stops to make calculations: how much money goes from the city up to the hills, and how much comes down? How much in drugs? How much in assaults and hostage rescues? How much in taxes for medical assistance, water and telephone for people who never pay for such things?
Do the numbers, and tell me: who, in this situation, is the exploited, and who is the exploiter? If the bloody fortune that goes up the hills were to remain there, those hills would be Switzerland. But, instead, it goes to the Fernandinhos1, and from them to the FARC. The origins of crime in the state of Rio de Janeiro are not to be found in poverty, crime and poverty share the same origins: the poor of Rio are exploited, but not by “us”, the middle class. They are exploited by crime lords, who enslave them in order to use them in illicit activities, and even use them as a public relations symbol to hide behind billboards against “social exclusion”.
If the accusatory speech against the middle class remains effective, it is because the speaker wisely refrains from saying “you”. A directly accusatory speech would become antipathetic. One must give the accusation an air of confession, so that the accuser does not appear to be speaking against the audience but rather in the audience’s name. Then, widening his eyes like an expressionist actor and histrionically beating his chest, he shouts “We!”, as if he wanted to assume part of the blame. But in the midst of this speech he does not present himself as what he is: a member of the leftist intelligentsia, an advocate of banditry. During the performance he carries out the generic role of a man of the middle class, making himself a decoy and pretending to draw guilt to himself, only to, in a Ju-Jitsu move, dodge it at the last instant and let it fall upon the audience, while, slipping quickly from the role of accused to that of prosecution witness, he escapes unharmed. The malice required for this trick is almost demonic. Dostoyevsky was right in calling these types of intellectuals “The Devils”.
It is not surprising that, among these individuals, the adhesion to the liberation dogma is almost unanimous. Once drug trafficking is legalized in the largest consumer market in Latin America, the regular and legal flow of money to Colombian guerrillas would be guaranteed, with plenty of fiscal incentives and subsidies from the State to reward the writers and filmmakers who fought the good fight during the difficult times of repression.
Millions of lives would be discarded down the drain of addiction and madness, but this would be a small price to pay for the glory of hallucinogenic socialism and for the prosperity of its literary, journalistic, and cinematic apostles.
It is unnecessary to discuss theoretically, abstractly, the hypothetical damages and benefits of the legalization of drugs: it fits clearly into a criminal strategy of continental revolution, so one must merely identify its place and function in the general plan in order to find out how evil it is.
With the USSR faucet turned off, the communist movement in the continent today has one single source of financial support: crime – drug trafficking. If they want to legalize it, it is only to prevent themselves from remaining too long in the dual and uncomfortable role of being both its material supporters and its supposed persecutors. When a politician backed by a revolutionary scheme finds himself elevated to power by legal means in a democracy, he stays in that ambiguous position, in which he cannot remain indefinitely without being unmasked. So, before the situation gets worse, it is necessary to change the rules of the game, making the illicit licit and relieving him of the painful burden of pretending that he is persecuting those whom he is secretly promising to help. Hence the call for the legalization of drugs.
Fernandinho Beira-Mar is an extremely periculous Brazilian drug dealer. Altough he is currently arrested, his power among the crime organizations remains very high, to a point that he has already been moved from one State to another many times in an effort to break his leadership. – Editor’s Note. Back
Translation: Ted Angell - Proof Reading: Jacqueline Baca