Hidden power likes being hidden

“Sarah, there’s a government inside the government, and I don’t control it.” (President Bill Clinton to Sarah McClendon)

The above q&a apparently had something to do with UFO’s, so it is hard to know if Clinton was merely treating a subject with disguised contempt. I stay far away from the subject myself. Without evidence, why speculate?

And the same goes for the notion of a “government inside the government,” except that …

… I ran for office in Billings, Montana in 1996, and probably visited 2,000 household doorsteps. In 2000 I collected signatures for Ralph Nader, visiting as many homes, if only briefly. My belief in democracy was shaken, but in the subsequent years, I would still pay homage to the voice of the people. In the back of my mind echoed this:

“No serious sociologist any longer believes that the voice of the people expresses any divine or specially wise and lofty idea. The voice of the people expresses the mind of the people, and that mind is made up for it by group leaders in who it believes and by those persons who understand the manipulation of public opinion. It is composed of inherited prejudices and symbols and clichés and verbal formulas supplied to them by the leaders.” (Edward Bernays, Propaganda (1928))

Bernays, the “Father of Modern Advertising” and nephew of Sigmund Freud, had a point. As much as I resent advertising, I too do not believe in the voice of the people. I have visited too much with the people. As Montanans like to say of neighbor state North Dakota, “there is no there there.”

How are supposed leaders supposed to deal with the people, who know nothing? Elected officials are monitored closely (read “controlled”) by oligarchs who pay close attention to their activities. In ’96 I would have thought it was as simple as campaign contributions holding sway over elected officials. I would have been naive enough to assume that campaign finance reform would fix things.

I am seasoned enough now to realize that it is more complex, and yet simpler. For appointed leaders (and I deliberately choose that word over “elected”), the “voice of the people” is no more than an echo from some faraway island.

So I now know there is a “government within the government,” and no elected official controls it. Quite the opposite. And I regret to say that it has to be that way. It may well be that the oligarchs are no smarter than the people, and as prone to jump from one disaster to another, but our only hope, truly, is better oligarchs.

And where once I thought that such a body was a loose consensus making its power felt by dog whistles, I now accept that it is a structured body with real people holding titular power, and carefully hidden from view. If we know the name of a group, such as CFR or Bilderberger, we can as easily be certain that ain’t it. (Isn’t it interesting that the debauchery of Bohemian Grove is reflected at Burning Man? We are all one people!)

Who are they? If you don’t know the names of the most powerful families in this country, then you won’t recognize them. Here’s a fake glance … our “10 most powerful families.” Do you notice what I notice? It lists Kerry’s, McCain’s, Bush’s, Powell’s – these are mere servants of power! It is as if the real names cannot be spoken!

Here’s one to consider: musician David Crosby’s full name is David van Cortlandt Crosby. He is a descendant of that family and the Van Rensselaer’s. He’s rare – a well-known public face of an oligarchic family (who would not be known based on musical skills alone, as he has none). Most like to stay behind the scenes, or like the Rockefeller’s, pretend their fortune has dissipated. Same with the Kennedy’s – Joe Sr. was a powerful mobster, had sons in highest public office, and we imagine they are busy doing charitable work and public service?

Here’s an article from “Liberty Blitzkreig” based on a study from Princeton and Northwestern (for which I am not willing to pay $30) which outlines the power of oligarchy versus citizen power. An interesting snippet – even when 80% of the public favors something, it will be implemented only 43% of the time.

But I get that. Two things to remember: One, I’ve been on thousands of doorsteps. I too would ignore what 80% believe. Secondly, as Bernays reminds us, that 80% doesn’t come to its beliefs by accident. They are merely following their leaders.

More interesting is this: Liberty Blitzkrieg does not name any oligarchs! Whether the actual study does I do not know – remember, I didn’t pay the $30.

So who are our rulers? How do they organize? I’ll have more to say on the matter, but for now simply want to assert that “oligarchy” cannot rule without formal structure – that would be chaotic. Structure exists, but is hidden from view, as Clinton noted.

About Mark Tokarski

Just a man who likes to read, argue, and occasionally be surprised.
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13 Responses to Hidden power likes being hidden

  1. JC says:

    “So who are our rulers?”

    The definitely aren’t in the list of the 10 most powerful families. Even the House of Saud has more power in the U.S. than any president — including the Bushes who worked feverishly for them to reinvest all of their oil wealth in American shell corporations.

    There are a lot of different oligarchic power structures — from the BIS to the Bilderberg meeting, to Bohemian Grove. There are more, of course. And who knows if there is one structure to rule them all, like the one ring…


    • Rob Kailey says:

      “So who are our rulers? How do they organize? I’ll have more to say on the matter, but for now simply want to assert that “oligarchy” cannot rule without formal structure – that would be chaotic. Structure exists, but is hidden from view, as Clinton noted.”

      Excuse me, but Mark’s very point was that there is a structure, so he feels that he knows. That structure has been his point for years, if you’ve read him with unjaundiced eye. It’s certainly forgivable if you mistake that; he bristles like a chihuahua when someone calls that structure he sees an “Illuminati”, even though that’s exactly what he postulates. He says so right there.

      So my question is this, JC: Are you agreeing with him, or disagreeing with him? It would certainly be helpful if you would clear that up …


      • JC, don’t answer! It’s a trick. Rob is merely pissed that I invaded his NFL website and pointed out how any damned fool can be right 63% of the time. Rob is not any damned fool, however. He’s an unusual one, kind of like Norma – he is dead to insight and meaning, but has a better vocabulary.


      • Rob Kailey says:

        No trick at all, Mark. I’m actually curious where JC stands on your theory. Concerning you, I’m only curious of one thing. “Hidden” implies a hider, intent born out by the very headline of this piece. Hidden = deliberate obfuscation = secret. You assert that the Oligarchy has a structure, defined rules of order. Any structure of humans with a chosen rule set is precisely a society. So, hidden structure of Power precisely is a secret society of control, an Illuminati Given the context of your writing here and elsewhere, you argue for the existence of The Illuminati, an argument I have no interest in having with you. My only question is this, why are you so terrified to use the word which accurately describes what you profess to believe in?


        • JC says:

          I’m plenty happy to let Mark reveal his thoughts in a future post: “I’ll have more to say on the matter”. So my current interest here is with the subject and what is known, not Mark’s opinion.

          As to visible structures, I mentioned several above, there’s more. Eisenhower coined the phrase “military-industrial-complex”, and he’s hardly a conspiracy theorist. The CIA in its hidden history has a structure that is quite capable of (and demonstrably has) affecting the courses of corporations, nations and individual wealth. There’s the Mafia and other organized crime syndicates (they call the “organized” for a reason and have a special category of laws for them: RICO). Many authors have shown how intertwined all of these organizations can be.

          My tongue-in-cheek “one ring” statement is just that, tongue-in-cheek. There may be more organized and hidden structures than we are aware of. That’s not so difficult of a concept for me to be open to, having read and studied all of the others.


        • You continually use the word “Illuminati”, and I know why – it is a smear word. Stop doing that. It adds nothing.

          I am building from the ground up – first I have to establish that we are not capable of self-governance. That is what this post is about.

          Secondly, I have to establish that even as we are not capable of self-governance, it is vitally important that we imagine that we govern ourselves. That’s why we have elections. This is where you come in all incredulous, as you are one, it appears, who thinks that elected officials are in charge, and their power derives from the governed. That is an illusion.

          Finally, and hardest, I will review some theories on how real government behind the scenes works. I’ve been moving forward on this topic for some weeks now, but am not yet ready to spring to action.


          • Rob Kailey says:

            A secret society of Power which controls media, politics, violent events world wide and even, according to you, the weather is aptly described by the word I use, and you are afraid of. You consider it a “smear” but it is an exact representation of what you argue exists, directed, singular and structured. Believers will not shy away from the word, non-believers won’t laugh harder at the concept just because the word is out there.The only one who seems upset by the use of ‘Illuminati’ is you. I remain curious. Are you ashamed that what you describe has a name you didn’t give it? Are you worried that the use of a word will shatter the fragile thesis you are attempting to offer because others have argued it before using the accuracy of the term, “Illuminati”? Fret not. No one who reads you will either accept or deny your theories based on the accurate use of language.

            For the record, Mark, I do believe in the cabals of power. I am also a huge fan of Chaos theory and complexity models. I don’t accept the idea of a secret and unified power structure, an Illuminati, any more than I trust the arguments that humans have never set foot on the moon. I do not have faith in elections, much as you desperately seem to hope that I do, but our elected officials do have some control on the path we all take. A surprising amount, actually. To use JC’s metaphor, there are many Lords of the Ring, and they do share power out of necessity. All the while they are feeding of of us, they are looking to feed off each other as well. That’s my point of disagreement with you, and precisely why I asked JC to clarify his stance. Which is more rational to him as a human being, that we are lorded by an Illuminati or that power structures which have always existed are subject to organic and volatile conflicts among themselves, offering at least a modicum of hope for us lowly peasants?


          • If I say that powerful people rule, but choose to stay out of sight, which is the case I intend to make, it is an arguable proposition. If you say “Illuminati,” a term I know but do not understand, then it sounds like satanism and chanting. One of us is grounded in reality.

            It is good you place a “surprising” amount of faith in elected officials, as that is the attitude I intend to attack.


          • Rob Kailey says:

            So you’re scared of a word that perfectly describes what you intend to establish as truth. A word you freely admit you don’t understand but petulantly blubber when others point out quite clearly that they do. Over time, I’ve pointed out that ‘faith’ has nothing to do with my assessments, yet your faith in an Illuminati scares you to the point of denial. These are truths, and I’m done here.


          • Your insistence on injecting that word is the giveaway. You intend to use it to smear me. But I don’t use it, avoid it, have never looked into it. Let’s use a different phrase with the same purpose … “Conspiracy theorist.” Be honest. You intend to use a meme to avoid thinking. You’re not terribly insightful or unique. Even Norma does this,


          • The word is a scare word. The people in power invest a lot of time in scarecrow opposition – for instance, perhaps you have noticed, if you aren’t fooled by the official story of 911, there are plenty of paths to follow, most of which are planted and false, but enough of them leading to anti-Semitic rants, UFO’s and “Illuminati” to give discredit to it overall. The purpose of the word is that it be used as you use it here, a device for framing. It allows you to imagine you possess more insight than you do (posing as someone above the fray) while smearing me as someone who cannot think properly.

            Just the opposite is true, ergo the framing device is incredibly useful to you, and I avoid it.


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