Anticipating the establishment
In a preface to his book Democracy Incorporated, professor emeritus of Politics Sheldon S. Wolin poses a question, running the risk he remarks, that critics may dismiss the volume as fantasy: “How to persuade the reader that the actual direction of contemporary politics [i.e. in the U.S.] is toward a political system the very opposite of what the political leadership, the mass media, and think tank oracles claim that it is, the world’s foremost exemplar of democracy?”i A bit further Wolin writes, “my hope is that sceptical readers will resist the impulse to dismiss it and persevere instead.”ii
It is telling that a renowned scholar of political science anticipates the American Establishment, wondering if it is possible to persuade the reader. Particularly when the case he makes is well researched and the facts obviously speak for themselves. What is behind this anticipation? For clearly it is not farfetched to say that “there are grounds for believing that the broad citizenry [of the U.S.] is becoming increasingly uneasy about “the direction the nation is heading,” about the role of big money in politics, the credibility of the popular news media, and the reliability of voting returns.” That American citizens “no longer recognize their country,” that preemptive war, widespread use of torture, domestic spying, endless reports of corruption in high places, corporate as well as governmental” – all of this means that something is terribly wrong in American politics, certainly justifying Wolin’s research.iii But even though these facts are undoubtedly beyond debate, this paper will argue that the answer Wolin suggests as to why this is happening is open to discussion, that Wolin’s well-wrought argument conceals a truth the American Establishment would rather not have exposed publicly.
In Democracy Incorporated Wolin states, apparently beyond debate, that the current political development in the U.S. “is not the result of a premeditated plot…It is, instead, a set of effects produced by actions or practises undertaken in ignorance of their lasting consequences.” Instead of a leader who “is not the architect of the system but its product…This is the achievement of a nation that gave pragmatism, the philosophy of consequences, to the world.”iv Elaborating on these presuppositions Wolin introduces the term “inverted totalitarianism” to explain the emergence of this “new type of political system, seemingly one driven by abstract totalizing powers, not by personal rule, one that succeeds by encouraging political disengagement rather than mass mobilization…” v
Wolin’s description precisely marks the great difference with classic forms of totalitarianism, in the sense that inverted totalitarianism “is not expressly conceptualized as an ideology or objectified in public policy.” It is thus a new form of totalitarianism that publicly endorses the notion of democracy, whereas in fact, however concealed from the public, it operates to subject the American people. Wolin confirms this, although not explicitly, stating that like in classic totalitarianism inverted totalitarianism is also “furthered by power-holders and citizens who often seem unaware of the deeper consequences of their actions or inactions.” Yet instead of asking the question whether this mass deception could have been created deliberately, Wolin assumes that this reveals a “certain heedlessness, an inability to take seriously the extent to which a pattern of consequences may take shape without having been preconceived.”vi
Wolin’s vision not only renders all people innocent, but leaves certain questions unanswered, which points to a possible correlation between his assumptions and his anticipation not to be labelled a fantasist. Lance deHaven-Smtih argues that especially since 9/11 a fear has arisen amongst scholars and journalists not to be labelled “conspiracy theorists” when they criticize public officials, as it would damage their careers beyond repair.vii So instead of investigating relationships and occurring patterns between high crimes, specific powerful individuals, their different positions in influential organisations and developments in society, Wolin does not even consider the possibility of deliberate creation of certain events. Instead he maintains to believe that the whole development toward inverted totalitarianism is driven by abstract totalizing powers and thus cannot possibly have been preconceived, as all actions are merely based on ignorance of their lasting consequences.
Deception and institutionalized fear
But the question however is, is it reasonable to persist that all actions that reinforce the politics of inverted totalitarianism are based on ignorance rather than on deliberate deception? Apart from numerous documented deceptions proving these were deliberate actions, Professor of Sociology C. Wright Mills wrote already in 1965 that “the course of events in our time depends more on a series of human decisions than on any inevitable fate.” Today this is even more true, especially since the circle of those who actually decide is narrowed. For “as the means of decision are centralized and the consequences of decisions become enormous, then the course of great events often rests upon the decisions of determinable circles.”viii
Take e.g. Barak Obama who was hailed as the redeemer when he became president, enabling him to hypnotize the masses so they would adopt and collectively repeat the idea that everything would “change,” for “yes we can.” Looking back at this whole spectacle we cannot but acknowledge that nothing has fundamentally changed, that the people who desperately wanted change were led on. Wolin confirmes this, for “what could be more unchanging than the perpetuation of the cozy and longstanding relationship between Washington and Wall Street?” Instead of Obama holding up to his promise, Wolin too observes that “grandiose promises of change gave way to proposals for rescuing the economy rather than altering its fundamentals.” And so change thus “yielded to the priorities and requirements of policy and administrative decision making, [while] the scope of change “contracted” and got lost in translation.”ix However, because of his presuppositions Wolin does not ponder the question whether this whole spectacle could have been a deliberate deception. Nonetheless, it must be identified as a mass deception, whether this whole spectacle was a deliberate conscious action or whether Obama and his administration were ignorant of the consequences. A deception definitely made possible also because Obama is African American, which allowed for the continuance of the paradigmatic shift the Bush administration had initiated: towards an increasing inegalitarianism and reinforcement of state and corporate power that reduced and eliminated programs that had helped empower the many.x
One other example, described by Wolin, which undoubtedly displays deliberate deception of the American people, took place shortly before the midterm elections of 2006, when the Republican administration of George W. Bush was faced with the prospect of severe loses and proposed “a sweeping bill curtailing the rights of detainees including those who were American citizens.” In anticipation three prominent Republican senators posed to protest, threatening “to block the bill unless it respected the articles of the Geneva Convention proscribing certain forms of torture.” But when the bill was finally passed it became clear “that the senators had participated in a shell game,” promoting the illusion “that presidential power had been checked when in fact presidential authority was expanded.” Sixty-two other senators, apart from those two who were seemingly protesting, had accepted “the most radical invasion of the rights of defendants since the Alien and Sedition Laws of 1798.” This illegal act, since it was not approved of by the American people, not only reduced “the power of the courts to hear appeals from detainees,” but it relied “instead on military commissions to handle the cases.” The result of this deception was that the new law gave Bush the authority to interpret the meaning of human rights as he saw fit, providing at the same time to delegate that authority to the secretary of defence.xi
Talking about power and the knowledge to deceive people on a massive scale, how about luring not just the American people but many western countries into the Iraq war on false allegations of possession of weapons of mass destruction? And even worse, when the UN inspectors did not find any weapons and Iraq was destabilized, just as easy stating another lie that “the real reason was that Saddam Hussein had forged an alliance with Osama bin Laden and the elusive Al Qaida terror group.”xii As Wolin surely knows, the list of deceptions is numerous. There is even documented prove of conspiracies in high office. So why then still suggest that Bush is merely “the pliant favored child of privilege, of corporate connections, a construct of public relation wizards and of party propagandists?” Again, is it reasonable then to argue that the new political system, inverted totalitarianism, is simply an effect produced by actions of practises undertaken in ignorance or their lasting consequences? Or is Wolin being politically correct, in order to create a complex thesis that draws away the attention from what is actually going on?
The power elite
The problematic part of Wolin’s thesis is that it underestimates the power and intelligence of the people who are in charge, who clearly make decisions that have a worldwide influence of which they seem to be well aware. People, and that’s why it is so hard to grasp, obviously with power beyond imagination – who actually use imagination, with the help of course of the media, to create myths and thus inspire power-holders and citizens who are unaware of the deeper consequences of their actions they perform while helping to materialize the goals these elites are aiming for.
Wolin appears to be inheritor of liberal-minded observers from the 1950s, who claim that events, not men, shape the big decisions, echoing a theory of history as Fortune, Chance, Fate, or the work of The Unseen Hand. Drawing on Adam Smith’s theory of the Unseen Hand operating and structuring the market, Wolin believes that individuals are “only capable of making rational decisions on a small scale,” as no one possesses “the powers required for rationally comprehending a whole society and directing its activities.”xiii There are, however, two things Wolin overlooks.
One implication that can be drawn from all such fatalisms, as Mills asserts, is that if fortune, providence, Chance, Fate or the Unseen Hand rules, “then no elite of power can be justly considered a source of historical decisions, and [thus] the idea – much less the demand – of responsible leadership is an idle and an irresponsible notion. For clearly, an impotent elite, the plaything of history, cannot be held accountable.”xiv The consequence of this notion, however, is that people of power who are engaged in acts of crime can more easily get away with it, as in fact they do. One striking example is that both George W. Bush and Dick Cheney, who were called to account for the apparently inexplicable defence failure on 9/11, at first reluctantly agreed to testify, and then insisted on testifying together, in secret, and not under oath. One must ask why these men of power put themselves above the law. What were they hiding for the public eye?
What Wolin also seems to ignore is the fact that individuals can, and on different occasions actually do conspire in secret to develop power in order to direct the course of history. The foundation of the Council on Foreign Relations in 1917 is such an example were a small select group of the brightest scientists with high ambitions, collaborating with politicians, came together during the winter of 1916-1917 to work on grand schemes for the post-war world.xv The far-reaching consequences of these collaborations cannot be underestimated. And there are more of these secret groups who make decisions with far-reaching consequences. In other words, if the elites are viewed as impotent, a view by the way that would perfectly suit the elites, they cannot be held responsible, and thus people will be inclined to feel more sympathetic to these men in difficult positions. But precisely this view of the elites as weakened by compromise and disunited to the point of nullity, is a substitute for impersonal collective fate. A fate, according to Mills, which is also “mightily supported by the notion of an automatic economy [as in Adam Smith’s view], in which the problem of power is solved for the economic elite by denying its existence.” So then it is easy to deny the existence of an elite with any real power that could make a difference, let alone change the course of history.
But, as Mills rightly asks, if war and peace and slump and prosperity are today “no longer matters of ‘fortune’ or ‘fate,’ but that, precisely now more than ever, they are controllable, then we must ask – controllable by whom?” And then the answer must be: “By whom else but those who now command the enormously enlarged and decisively centralized means of decisions and power?””xvi It is an undeniable truth that today the U.S. has become “an epochal pivot,” and that “[t]here is nothing about history that tells us that a power elite cannot make it,” even though “the will of such men is always limited.” Because “never before have the limits been so broad, for never before have the means of power been so enormous.”xvii
The power elite and the occult
Although Mills wrote these words in 1956, they seem to be even more true today, as we witness the ever growing centralization and complex entwinement of the economy, politics, media, technology and the military-industrial complex. Instead of myths governing decisions-makers, as Wolin asserts, it is exactly the opposite: the decision-makers deliberately create myths to disconnect the actors and reality, drawing their power from supernatural forces that far exceed the scales of ordinary politics.xviii In short, to really understand what is happening we have to investigate the powerful elites, who, as different investigators have shown, are often part of secret societies. The expression “behind the scenes” is fully applicable to, possibly even originates from these societies. For these secret brotherhoods not only (1) organise secret meetings where “efforts are made to conceal joint actions,” but (2) the participants also “jointly agree to take a course of action, and (3) this action must be illegal.”xix
It was professor of Economics Antony C. Sutton who, after an anonymous donation of a “membership list and supporting documents for a truly secret society – the Yale Skull and Bones,” revealed that a secret power was striving to conduct the history of America with the ultimate aim to control the world. Among the members were George W. Bush, his father George Bush sr. and grandfather Prescott Bush, and many other American elite families. Like Sutton found in these documents, Mills also describes “the elite [as] a set of higher circles whose members are selected, trained and certified and permitted intimate access to those who command the impersonal institutional hierarchies of modern society, [combining] in their persons an awareness of impersonal decision-making with intimate sensibilities shared with one another.”xx And as society develops, opening up avenues to men pursuing their several interests, “many of them have come to see that these several interests could be realized more easily if they worked together, in informal as well as in more formal ways, and accordingly they have done so.”xxi
In Tragedy and Hope historian Carroll Quigley also wrote that “the powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent private meetings and conferences.”xxii Quigley also quoted a revealing statement of President Woodrow Wilson, showing a tantalizing glimpse of this secretive power that works behind the scenes: “Some of the biggest men in the U.S. in the fields of commerce and manufacturing know that there is a power so organized, so subtle, so complete, so pervasive that they had better nor speak above their breath when they speak in condemnation of it.”
According to Austrian occultist Rudolf Steiner, who lectured in the early twentieth century on secret brotherhoods and their global aspirations, “Those who reckon with such things always count on long stretches of time. They prepare things and leave them to develop. These are not individuals, but brotherhoods in which the successor takes over from the predecessor and carries on in a similar direction with what has been started.” In contrast to ordinary people these brotherhoods have knowledge of “definite laws [which] underlie the rise and evolution of peoples, of nations….human beings interfere, in some part unconsciously, though if they are members of secret brotherhoods, then they do so consciously.” They also developed knowledge “in which way a person who, because of the type of passions in her…can be put in a certain position and be brought under the sway of certain influences.” Although many accounts to achieve certain goals fail, they take account of long periods of time and of “how little inclination people have to pay attention to the wider – the widest contexts.”xxiii
Revelation of the occult in 9/11
Considering the fact that these elites have a great influence on the media, politics, the economy, technology and the industrial-military complex, combined with the occult knowledge of manipulation, long-range planning, networking of all kinds, and ensuring the right people in the right place – if we consider all of this, then we can start to imagine how wide-ranging the power of these elites truly is. How this power has grown beyond imagination over the last decades, as they not only deceive millions of people, distorting facts, suppressing criticism, spreading propaganda and lies, but also by killing millions of people, brainwashing young men to perform the most horrendous acts in wars that have been staged to bring democracy. We can see then how the American constitution, which has always been understood to limit power of the government, is at this very moment actually authorizing the power of these elites.
Taking all of this into account, it is no longer plausible to believe, as Wolin suggests, that as a result of the misadventure in Iraq, the “Superpower’s toll – thousands of innocent lives, widespread economic devastation and social dislocation, and years of military occupation – was unintended rather than deliberate.”xxiv Especially if we bring to mind how this misadventure is linked to the previous concocted grand deception to persuade the American people and western countries into the Iraq war on false allegations of possession of weapons of mass destruction. Therefore, the president’s frequent declaration that the American system is a democracy is nothing more than a blatant lie, a manipulative slogan to conceal the fact that the actual constitution is anchored in a extra constitutional justification. In fact, as we have seen, Wolin illustrated this with the sham that took place shortly before the midterm elections in 2006, what resulted in an expansion of government power, enabling them to reinterpret the meaning of human rights while denying international law.
Perhaps one of the most striking and daring examples displaying this secretive power and intelligence was the worldwide announcement of the “war on terror” by George W. Bush. Daring because it was performed fully out in the open, and millions, maybe even billions of people bought it. Many people, including scholars and journalists, have been deceived by Bush’ seemingly, spontaneous almost humane response in the media. For nobody expects George W. Bush to be one of the brightest intellectuals, of which his media presentations testify, and consequently his first words after the 9/11 attacks looked rather “casual, almost offhand remark, unscripted…as if they came to him as naturally as a baseball.”xxv
The fact, however, that we are dealing here with an occult act of such magnitude, a manipulation of the highest order blinding people precisely because it was executed fully out in the open, can be gathered from a observation from scholar of religion Reza Aslan. He states, quoting George W. Bush: “This crusade,” President Bush said, pausing for what seemed like an eternity. “This war on terrorism.” Pause. “Is going to take a while.” Crusade The word hung in the air like an undetonated bomb, long enough for its myriad implications to come to mind; long enough, surely, for that one most devastating inference to be fully absorbed.” By just contemplating the rhythm, the choice of the words and the way the words were spoken, we can see how the seeds of evil were planted, how a long-range plan was initiated that would conceal the actions of war which the Bush administration had already planned.
As Alsan observed, there is no doubt that Bush when he used the word crusade, which means holy war, knew “that a great many Americans – already brimming with religious fury – understood the term, as did a large swath of the Arab and Muslim world, which had been feeling edgy and discomfited by President bush’s overt evangelical worldview ever since he had taken office.” By using the word crusade, Bush avoided using Islam, although he knew it was of course implicated since the attackers were Muslims. It explains why Bush “made a hasty about-face, going out of his way in the following weeks to assure Muslims around the world that he had no intention of launching a campaign against Islam.”xxvi This action precisely reveals his knowledge of the actual harm that had already been done. For although he did not openly declare war on Islam, what rendered him and the American people innocent, he knew that by using the word crusade he would trigger the collective unconscious of the Christian nation, igniting hatred, mistrust, fear and islamophobia. Looking at the far-reaching effect of Bush’s words, there is no question that it was a premeditated presentation. That Bush, like the word crusade, also deliberately uttered the words “either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists.” Because by doing so he created a global ideological cleavage of mythical proportions, which not only led to violence within the U.S, western societies and the Middle East, but also provided support for the decision to launch a war and send troops to Afghanistan. A war that must have been taken well in advance of 9/11, considering the scale and the short amount of time it took to launch it.xxvii
Today the secret network has grown much more complex, as scholars are now slowly starting to realize. Al Qaeda, the militant Islamic network of which the hijackers were part, was created by the CIA, of which George Bush sr., Skull & Bones member, became director in 1976. According to Chossudovsky Al Qaeda “continues to participate in CIA covert operations in different parts of the world.” In other words, we have to listen very carefully to what is being said by these politicians who deliberately seek to deceive the public in pursuance of total global control, since they not only foreclosed the possibility of a public inquiry, but also triggered a fear and disinformation campaign. On 18 May 2002 Vice president Dick Cheney said on Fox news, “I think that the prospects of a future attack on the US are almost a certainty…It could happen tomorrow, it could happen next week, it could happen next year, but they will keep trying. And we have to be prepared.” What Cheney was really telling us, is that their “intelligence asset,” which they created, is going to strike again, and so in all likelihood the “CIA would be the first to know about it.”xxviii
i S.S. Wolin, Democracy Incorporated Managed Democracy and the Specter of Inverted Totalitarianism, p.xx
ii Ibid., p.43
iii Ibid., p.xx
iv Ibid., p.40
v Ibid., p.44
vi Ibid., P.xviii
vii In his book Conspiracy Theory in America Lance deHaven-Smtih argues that especially since 9/11 a fear has arisen amongst scholars and journalists not to criticize public officials, who then in turn will label them conspiracy theorists, damaging their careers beyond repair. This could probably explain Wolin’s anticipation for being called a fantasist.
viii C. Wright Mills, The Power Elite, p.21 Although the power has become more centralized, that does not mean that the elites control everything, or do not make mistakes or miscalculations. “Yet in our time,” and that is even more applicable to 2013, “the pivotal moment does arise, [where] small circles do decide or fail to decide…The dropping of the A-bombs over Japan was such a moment; the decision on Korea…the sequence of maneuvers which involved the United States in World War II was such a ‘moment'”, to which we can add the Afghan war, the Iraq war.
ix Ibid., p. xiii
x S.S. Wolin, Democracy Incorporated Managed Democracy and the Specter of Inverted Totalitarianism, p.xi And while “[a]ttention was directed instead to the unprecedented spectacle of an African American candidate,…a monumental change took place, signifying a global empire “that redefined national identity, overshadowing “republic” and “democracy.””
xi S.S. Wolin, Democracy Incorporated Managed Democracy and the Specter of Inverted Totalitarianism, p.78
xii W.F. Engdahl, A Century of War Anglo-American Oil Politics and the New World Order, p.308
xiii Ibid., p.xxii
xiv C. Wright Mills, The Power Elite, p.26
xv J. Ben-Aharon, America’s global responsibility. Individuation, initiation and threefolding, p.34
xvi Ibid., p.26
xvii Ibid., p.25
xviii Ibid., p.11
xix A.C. Sutton, America’s Secret Establishment An Introduction to the Order of Skull & Bones, p.3
xx Ibid., p.15
xxi C. Wright Mills, The Power Elite, p.20
xxii C. Quigely, Tragedy and Hope, p.324
xxiii R.Steiner, The Karma of Untruthfulness, p.234
xxiv S.S. Wolin, Democracy Incorporated Managed Democracy and the Specter of Inverted Totalitarianism, p. 49
xxv R. Aslan, How to win a Cosmic War Confronting Radical Religion, p. 61
xxvi Ibid., p. 62
xxvii M. Chossudovsky, AMERICA’S “WAR ON TERRORISM”,p.xii
xxviii M. Chossudovsky, AMERICA’S “WAR ON TERRORISM”, p.136