The Disadvantage of Sight
Olavo de Carvalho
Media does not influence public opinion through one or two news items, or one or two editorials. It’s the repetition, the prolonged reiteration of comments and non-comments that slowly mold the mind and, once consolidated, can only be broken by a collective trauma. An earthquake, a war, an epidemic has the virtue of shaking loose long instilled habits. But even these hecatombs must be recorded, and the awakening effect can then be controlled and reduced to inoffensive proportions. The efficiency of this control depends less on some emergency action than on the accumulated strength of the conventional walls.
In Brazil, these walls are maybe the best case of durability seen since the Iron Curtain.
The September attacks could have, in one act, changed the vision that Brazilians have of the world, as it changed visions in the U.S. After the events, there are not much people in the U.S. who still believe everything they heard against their country since the 1960s. After the World Trade Center attack, very few American adults would not question if their childhood idols, Jane Fonda, Susan Sontag, or Noam Chomsky, were simply traitors who helped condemn Vietnam to tyranny and misery, while the countries losing to the U.S. built wealth and liberty.
But the impact of this discovery has not reached our shores. It was softened in the distance. In this country, anti-American mythology from the 1960s resists bravely, rejuvenated not only by the repeated mention of buzz words of the time, sold as definitive explanations of today’s events, but by the complete exclusion of information that could change the backdrop, the basic board of reference from which today’s events are interpreted.
Never did a newspaper or magazine in this country publish a story, no matter how small, about the fierce opposition that American conservatives raise against the IMF, the UN, and global politics. Our society has been fooled each day for the past decade by journalists who lead us to believe that globalism, Americanism, and conservatism are working hand-in-hand to oppress the poor Third World.
Half of voters in the U.S. see the New World Order as a socialist, anti-Christian, and anti-American project. These people, for better or worse, chose George W. Bush. The globalism team, the team supporting international organisms, the NGOs which are fed by sovereign land and powers of national states, voted strongly in favor of Al Gore, whose family’s wealth is thanks to Armand Hammer, a business magnate who was revealed as a financial agent of Comintern by the Moscow Files.
Similarly, thousands of other simple pieces of information freely dispersed in the U.S. and Europe have not reached our ears. But maybe these are enough to change the entire perspective of Brazilians toward the world. These should be enough to burst the bubble of cliches that keep us far from reality.
That’s why these new items don’t make it here. That’s why the people who know them have great difficulty in trying to explain the reality of the latest events. To convince the public, one must remove the entire body of premises and suppositions that have developed over decades through the press, in churches, and at intellectual roundtables. One would have to overcome the set of collective habits and reflexes, an entire culture of deceit built up over two generations of energetic liars and lazy imitators. There is no single argument, not even the most powerful, that could accomplish this magic trick.
There is a saying that, in the land of blind people, a man with one eye is crowned king. Perhaps. But one thing is certain: a man with two would be considered crazy.