Paulo Coelho

Stories & Reflections

Once upon a time …

Author: Paulo Coelho

1. You are probably surprised that I have posted a lot of old ads on smoking during this “smoking week” in the blog. In fact, in my understanding, back to the 90’s people did not have an enemy anymore, the Cold War was over, but then they needed to “motivate” their lives. They found a new enemy: the cigarette. I have friends that started smoking because of the ads, stopped smoking because of the anti-smoking campaign, and are unhappy until today.

2. On a side note, the next step after this campaign against tobacco was the politically correctness, followed by the Stalinist vigilance on how people should behave, then the good guys X the bad guys, – and see the state of the world right now… Instead of educating people, the NGOs are spending millions of USD on saving the pandas, greenhouse effect, etc. I believe that educated people will care for the planet (how can the main characters of “Slumdog Millionaire” of “City of God” care about anything but survival?).

3. But the NGOs are not transparent, and their behavior, with a few exceptions, is not too different from the banking system. The difference is that they will not collapse, because they are not accountable, and they don’t need to return the money.

4. Mark Forster’s “Quantum of Solace” touches on the subject. There is a scene on a charity dinner to raise funds for a “good cause” while the organizer is at the same time provoking (behind the curtains) the problems that he wants to solve.

5. I am not preaching smoking, but I believe that when people know “what is better” for his/her neighbor or for the planet, then we are stepping into dangerous waters.

Subscribe to Blog

Join 16.9K other subscribers

Stories & Reflections


Paulo Coelho Foundation

Gifts, keepsakes and other souvenirs