Olavo de Carvalho Quotes

Who is Olavo de Carvalho?

Olavo Luiz Pimentel de Carvalho was a Brazilian polemicist, philosopher, political pundit, former astrologer, journalist and conspiracy theorist who lived in the United States.

De Carvalho was rather right-wing oriented and enjoyed stirring up the conversation with controversial statements.

Favorite subjects of De Carvalho were philosophers Hannah Arendt and Niccolò Machiavelli, Communism, particularly Joseph Stalin and crowd formation.

Born April 29, 1947
Died January 24, 2022

Books by Olavo de Carvalho


Best 51 Quotes by Olavo de Carvalho | Page 1 of 2

“As a young man, Bill Clinton was one of thousands of leftist students who benefited from KGB funds, earning one of those trips to the USSR which were the preferred means for the recruitment of Soviet agents in the universities of the West. In the 60s, that would be deterrent enough for any application for town mayor of the interior. In the 90s, after three decades of Gramscian cultural revolution, the dangerous links did not prevent Clinton from being elected US president with the support of the American Communist Party. Thanks to a well-calculated 'politically correct' speech, the new ruler became an idol of the left, which moved heaven and earth to keep him in office despite a range of charges, including sexual frivolities, financial imbroglios and a multitude of small Watergates, including something perfectly serious and terrifying: the suspicion of favoring Chinese nuclear espionage. The well-thinking press resisted any investigation of the matter.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“But ignorance, like everything else in this life, does not remain stable: it evolves.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“Either science is a practice in permanent self-correction or it has public authority. It cannot be both things at the same time.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“Everything around induces madness, infantilism, imaginative exasperation. Against this, the study is not enough. Become aware of the moral infection and fight, fight, fight for your balance, for your maturity, for your lucidity. Have normality, sanity, centrality of the psyche as an ideal. Promise yourselves to be strong, well-structured personalities, serene in the midst of the storm, ready to overcome all obstacles with the help of God and no one else. Promise to BE and not just ask, get, feel, enjoy.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“From our federal government, there was a plan of the National Council of Public Security to resolve the worst and most urgent problem, which is the number of homicides in Brazil, for which we are already in the first place. The first place belonged to Russia, but we are now, with our 50,000 homicides a year, first. Russia has whatever, 42. Russia still was a little bit ahead, but we've got 50. Not saying it's 50, it is 49,999. So we are record-breakers. I already told you, our students take the last places on international tests, and we practice more homicides. Then it is not wrong to conclude: The Brazilian is the dumbest and most murderous of people in the universe!”

Olavo de Carvalho

“Hence the strategic importance of imagination: for the five senses, there is only the here and now, the concrete case, the immediate data; for thought, there is only the concept, the general, the scheme of schemes, increasingly rarefied and universal. Without imaginative mediation, these two cognitive faculties would be separated by an abyss. Man would perhaps have sensations like a rabbit; and maybe even inside he was thinking something, like a computer; but he could not think about what he actually feels, that is, reason about lived experience; nor could he, on the other hand, guide experience by reasoning, seeking new knowledge. It would be as efficient as a computer operated by a rabbit, and as alive as a rabbit drawn on a computer screen.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“In Brazil, it goes like this: communists only read communist authors, (economic) liberals only read liberal authors and so on. Each one is afraid of tarnishing their little soul with sinful thoughts.”

Olavo de Carvalho

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“In order for someone to speak with some propriety about the communist movement, they must have previously studied the following things:

1. The classics of Marxism: Marx, Engels, Lenin, Stalin, Mao Zedong.
2. The most important Marxist philosophers: Lukács, Korsch, Gramsci, Adorno, Horkheimer, Marcuse, Lefebvre, Althusser.
3. 'Main Currents of Marxism', by Leszek Kolakowski.
4. Some good history and sociology books about the revolutionary movement in general, such as 'Fire in the Minds of Men', by James H. Billington, 'The Pursuit of the Millenium', by Norman Cohn, 'The New Science of Politics', by Eric Voegelin.
5. Good books on the history of communist regimes written from a non-apologetic point of view.
6. Books by the most famous critics of Marxism, like Eugen von Böhm-Bawerk, Ludwig von Mises, Raymond Aron, Roger Scruton, Nicolai Berdiaev and so many others.
7. Books about the communist strategy and tactics on their rise to power, about the underground activities of the movement in the West and chiefly about the 'active measures' (disinformation, agents of influence), like those by Anatolyi Golitsyn, Christopher Andrew, John Earl Haynes, Ladislaw Bittman, Diana West.
8. The largest number possible of testimonies by former communist agents and militants who recall their experience in service of the movement or communist governments, such as Arthur Koestler, Ian Valtin, Ion Mihai Pacepa, Whittaker Chambers, David Horowitz.
9. High-value testimonies about human condition in socialist societies, like those by Guillermo Cabrera Infante, Vladimir Bukovski, Nadiejda Mandelstam, Alexander Soljenítsin, Richard Wurmbrand.

This is a reading program that can be accomplished in four or five years by a good student. I do not know, either in the Brazilian right or left, anyone, absolutely anyone, who has accomplished it.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“Intelligence, unlike money or health, has this peculiarity: the more you lose it, the less you miss it.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“It is a natural impulse of human beings to evade the narrowness of personal and family routine to venture into the wider universe of history, where you feel that your life is transcendent and get a higher 'sense'. The most banal and clumsy way to do it, accessible even to the poor, incapable and rogue is the militancy in a party or a 'cause', that is, in some group embellished with pompous words like 'freedom', 'equality', 'justice', 'patriotism', 'morality' or 'human rights'.

These words can represent any substantive value, but not when the individual acquires from them all the value they may have, rather than filling them with his own personal substance. The most criminal illusion of modernity was to persuade men that they can be noble by identifying with a "cause", when in fact all causes, while names of abstract values, only acquire concrete value by the nobility of men who represent them. The bottom of degradation is achieved when some 'causes' are so valued that they seem to infuse virtues automatically in any bum, fake or bandit who agrees to represent them.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“Only the subject's individual consciousness can testify for the unwitnessed acts, and there is no act more deprived of external testimony than the act of knowing.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“Plato and Aristotle already knew that the human condition is neither knowledge nor ignorance, but the permanent tension between these two poles, the first belonging to the gods, the second to the animals.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“Some explanations of a crime are not explanations: they're part of the crime.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“The academic profession is today the tomb of philosophy and I recommend it to anyone with a vocation as a gravedigger.”

Olavo de Carvalho

Products by Olavo de Carvalho

“The destruction of the civilizational foundations of human existence does not begin on the battlefields or on the stock exchanges: it begins in the quiet offices where seemingly harmless men – whether philosophers or UN bureaucrats – try to be wiser than God.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“The ease with which the apostles of the future better accept and legitimize the brute fact of injustice, oppression and genocide in the societies of their own making contrasts pathetically with their revolt and indignation against mere abstract ideas, symbols and cultural values of other societies.

Even today, after all the historic crimes of their revolution have been revealed, it seems to them less urgent to denounce the uninterrupted Chinese state slaughter or to dismantle the lethal narco-guerrilla machine than to destroy the language and values of societies that, if they have their share of evils and madness, were never genocidal or totalitarian. It is that in this language and in these values, sometimes millenary, its enemy par excellence is incorporated: human nature.”

Olavo de Carvalho

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“The existence of a prior reality, autonomous, self-sufficient, all-encompassing, transcendent to the world and the human psyche, is an incontrovertible logical requirement of any theory about the origin of the universe, however 'materialistic' it may be intended. There is no escape.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“The largest funder of the campaign for the liberation of drugs is George Soros, who also subsidizes pro-terrorist and disarmament organizations (a wonderful combination) and nurtures the modest ambition of becoming the informal president of the world. He has already bought land in Bolivia, where, once legal barriers are removed, you have everything to be the biggest supplier of raw materials to the FARC.”

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“The pacifist movement spearheaded by the communist parties of Europe in the 1930s was a trick devised by Stalin to give Germany time to rearm with Soviet aid and destroy the old world 'bourgeois order' (read Ernst Topitsch’s classic Stalin’s War). Millions of French idiots shouted in marches and waved little white flags not knowing that this was the passport to the slaughterhouse.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“The revolutionary mentality, with its self-deferring promises, so ready to turn into its opposites with the most innocent face in the world, is the greatest scourge that has ever befallen humanity. Its victims, from 1789 to the present, are no less than three hundred million people – more than all epidemics, natural catastrophes and wars between nations have killed since the beginning of time.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“To be a philosopher is to be installed in reality.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“Vaccines either kill you or drive you crazy. Never vaccinate your children.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“What characterizes modern philosophy as a whole is the loss of this tensional dialectic, the alternating proclamation of absolute knowledge and invincible ignorance. On the one hand, the omnipotent metaphysics of Descartes and Spinoza; on the other, Hume's radical skepticism. It is true that Kant wanted to find a middle way, but by limiting the possibilities of knowledge to sensible phenomena and empty forms of reason, reducing access to transcendence to pure imagination and faith, he created the most exquisite and lethal form of modern agnosticism. As if in compensation, he raised the Gnostic mirage of 'eternal peace' on the horizon, becoming the prophet of global bureaucracy and a bionic Christianity without any flesh and blood Christ.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“When Hannah Arendt said that the ambition of revolutionary ideologies was not to create a better society, but to change human nature, she undoubtedly hit the nail on the head.”

Olavo de Carvalho

“When leftists start talking about 'peace', prudence would recommend that they start stockpiling food in the basement for the next war their leaders are getting them into at that very moment.”

Olavo de Carvalho

Against Right-Wing Bolshevism Quotes

“If you want to argue with me, either you respect me, or hold your tears after I am done with you.”

Olavo de Carvalho
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“If you are a conservative, you think that a citizen has no right to hire another to kill him (much less to kill a third party), because life is a sacred gift that cannot be negotiated. But for the liberal, there is nothing more sacred than the right to buy and sell - even life itself: if you think your life sucks and want to hire a professional to put an end to it, neither the State nor the Church have the right to give the slightest opinion.”

Olavo de Carvalho
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Machiavelli, or the Demonic Confusion Quotes

“No one should ignore Leo Strauss's warning that many philosophical works can have two layers of meaning: one 'exoteric' for the multitudes, another 'esoteric' for the happy few who are not scandalized by fearful truths (or lies).”

Olavo de Carvalho
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“One of the most ingenious – or properly Machiavellian – feats of Stalin was to have managed to reconcile, in strategy and publicity, the administrative internationalism of the communist movement with the intense patriotic cult of Mother Russia, and this a few years after Lenin declared that nationalism was one of the worst enemies of communism.”

Olavo de Carvalho
Machiavelli, or the Demonic Confusion

“Rhetorical argumentation is articulated in a game of proportions between four elements – the situation, the judge or listener, the discourse itself (form and content) and the objective to be achieved.”

Olavo de Carvalho
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