A lot of people dismiss the notion of a “secret society” out of hand.
To them, talk of the Bilderbergs and Freemasons sounds far-fetched, if not outright crazy.
But that's partly because it's easier not to believe.
After all, to believe that a small, secretive group of powerful individuals is calling the shots behind the scenes means conceding that our fate, generally speaking, is out of our control.
It means accepting the rich and powerful run the world, and that our very democracy, in many ways, is a sham.
Still, these societies really do exist.
Are they really puppet masters pulling the strings on the world stage?
Only they know. We're left to speculate.
Still, we can at least acknowledge their existence. And maybe, by evaluating the scant information we do have, start to shed light on their influence in global politics.
So let's get started...
In the sleepy town of Watford, England, a caravan of town cars with blacked out windows winds through the hills. Helicopters fly low overhead, landing at The Grove — a centuries-old chateau-turned-resort.
There's a small group of protesters, but they're easily corralled on a grassy knoll by the hundreds of state security agents on hand. Oddly, there's no press. Roads are closed and the perimeter is secured. The entire town is on lockdown.
“I think it's outrageous that the local taxpayer has to pick up the tab for ostensibly a private meeting of trillionaires, probably the most wealthy people in the world,” bemoans Watford town Mayor Dorothy Thornhill. “Hertfordshire Constabulary have suddenly got this unexpected budget strain dumped on them at literally a month's notice. It's not on.”
It's the 2013 meeting of the Bilderbergs, and all of the world's elite are in attendance: Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Ben Bernanke, Paul Volcker, Christine Legarde, Donald Rumsfeld, Henry Kissinger, Larry Summers, Lloyd Blankfein, Jamie Dimon, Rupert Murdoch, Jeff Bezos, Eric Schmidt, Angela Merkel, George Soros, Warren Buffett, the Rockerfellers, and more...
The goal of their meeting: To determine the fate of the world.
It may sound like a Dan Brown novel, but it's not.
This top-secret, invitation-only meeting has taken place every year since 1954. The inaugural meeting was in Oosterbeek, Netherlands at the Bilderberg Hotel, from which the group got its name.
Annual attendees — 80 of the world’s most powerful people — are members. The rest are chosen by the group's Steering Committee. Some attendees are invited occasionally because of their knowledge or involvement in relevant topics. Others are first-timers, chosen for their possible later usefulness.
They must come alone. Personal assistants and body guards are quarantined in a separate hall. And the host state provides security to keep outsiders at bay. One-third of attendees are political figures. The others are from industry, finance, academia, labor, and communications. And the meeting follows Chatham House Rules, letting attendees freely express their views in a relaxed atmosphere, knowing nothing said will be quoted or revealed to the public.
Most importantly, you must never talk about the meetings.
Daniel Estulin investigated the group for 15 years. His book, The True Story of the Bilderberg Group, was published in 2005.
He describes the cabal as a “shadow world government” — a “private club where presidents, prime ministers, international bankers and generals rub shoulders, where gracious royal chaperones ensure everyone gets along, and where the people running the wars, markets, and Europe [and America] say what they never dare say in public.”
Estulin describes their agenda thusly:
The Bilderberg network allegedly controls a number of think tanks and corporations that influence governmental policy around the world.
One such institution is the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), the U.S. nonprofit, nonpartisan center that influences foreign policy and international affairs.
One of its 1921 founders, Edward Mandell House, lived in the White House during Woodrow Wilson’s term as president. House reportedly set Wilson's policies, helped draft the Treaty of Versailles, helped pass the Federal Reserve Act in December 1913 and ratify the 16th Amendment shortly thereafter.
Those actions gave money creation power to bankers and created the federal income tax.
David Rockefeller is the honorary chairman of the CFR, as well as the only member of the Advisory Board for the Bilderberg Group.
David Rockerfeller also founded the Trilateral Commission (TC), another “discussion group” established to push the Bilderberg agenda.
Since 1940, every Secretary of State, except James Byrnes, has been a member of the CFR or TC.
On page 405 of his Memoirs, David Rockfeller wrote:
“Some even believe we are part of a secret cabal working against the best interests of the United States characterizing my family and me as ‘internationalists’ and conspiring with others around the world to build a more integrated global political and economic structure — one world, if you will. If that’s the charge, I stand guilty, and I am proud of it.”
Many presidential candidates were also CFR members, including Herbert Hoover, Adlai Stevenson, Dwight Eisenhower, John Kennedy, Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, George Bush Sr., Bill Clinton, John Kerry, and John McCain.
The groups are also responsible for spawning a huge number of CIA directors and Treasury Secretaries.
So clearly, the Bilderbergs have considerable influence in the United States and the world at large.
And they're not the only ones.
They claim to be a fraternal group of men seeking only self-improvement and the betterment of society, but the Freemasons have long been suspected of occult worship and shadow manipulation.
The group got its beginnings 1717 London, where it first attracted the ire of Christians skeptical of the group's religious practices.
As an organization, the Freemasons claim to believe in a supreme being, a “grand architect.” But not everyone is convinced that architect is the Christian God. Some even believe it's Satan. It could also be Baal, Baphomet, Dajjal, Rahu, Osiris, some combination of these, or an entirely original conception independent of any other earthly religion.
It's impossible to know, since the group has been very successful at keeping its rituals secret.
As its symbolism suggests, the Freemasons are a pyramid organization. That means a select few at the top know everything, while the majority of members at the base know little.
Its not enough to simply join the Masons. You need to work your way up the ranks, proving your usefulness and relying on other members for help. Only then will you learn the truth...
Dollars and Sense
Critics say evidence of the group's occult practices hides in plain sight. The Freemason symbol of a compass and a square form a pentagram. This pentagram is the group's calling card, discretely featured on our money and in the cityscape of Washington D.C.
You have to admit, it seems odd to have a pyramid with an all-seeing eye on our $1 bill. It's also odd that the words decorating that pyramid read: "Annuit Coeptis Novus Ordo Seclorum," which translates to "Announcing the Beginning of the New World of the Ages" or "New World Order."
And what's more, if you lay a pentagram over the pyramid, the points reach the letters M-A-S-O-N.
In 1790, President George Washington, a Freemason, appointed another Freemason, the French-born Pierre Charles L'Enfant, to design the federal capital.
An aerial view of the city shows the Capitol building, Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, and White House form a plane. On that plane, the Capitol building, Jefferson Memorial, and White House form the Freemason compass.
Connected to the compass is the upside down pentagram, formed by DuPont Circle, Logan Circle, Washington Circle, Mt. Vernon Square, and the White House.
Of course, the Freemasons' aren't just cheeky designers, content to slip their secret symbols into American icons. Their members hide in plain sight, as well.
In addition to George Washington — who earned the distinguished title of Master Mason — 13 other Freemasons made it to the office of President. That includes James Monroe, Andrew Jackson, Teddy Roosevelt, Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman, and Gerald Ford.
In fact, the Washington Bible, on which many presidents take the oath of office, is a Masonic bible. It belongs to the St. Johns Lodge in New York City.
Generals, Supreme Court Justices, and many influential artists, actors, and musicians were Masons, too.
That includes Ben Franklin, Thomas Paine, Paul Revere, Patrick Henry, and Francis Scott Key.
J. Edgar Hoover headed the FBI as a Mason. Senators John McCain and Bob Dole ran for president as Masons. And astronauts John Glenn and Buzz Aldrin flew to the moon — or faked it, depending on what you believe — as Masons. Aldrin even brought a Masonic flag to the moon in 1969.
John Wayne, Clark Gable, Harry Houdini, Mark Twain, Oscar Wilde, and Mozart... all Masons. Henry Ford, too. Some even say Jack the Ripper was a Mason.
Architects of the New World Order
Clearly, the group has infiltrated every aspect of society, consolidating power at both the federal and local level.
But what is the ultimate goal?
The accumulation and perpetuation of their power and influence, for one. But maybe more, as well.
The Freemasons are suspected of:
So keep your eye out for secret handshakes.
The Skull and Bones
It's easy to dismiss the Order of the Skull and Bones as a bunch of college kids playing games...
But if you look deeper, it's easy to see how a small group of students at one of the world's most prestigious universities could evolve into a powerful collective of influential policymakers.
At best, Bones is a tightly-knit network of rich and powerful men, and at worst, a demonic organization with ties to the Freemasons and the Illuminati.
The Devil and Don Quixote
The Order of the Skull and Bones was founded in 1832 by William Russell, who had spent a year in Germany fraternizing with members of the mystical and elite clubs he found there. That includes groups that mimicked the Enlightenment-era Illuminati, which was allegedly destroyed in 1785.
When Russell returned, he tapped Alfonso Taft, father of President William H. Taft, as a recruit and co-founder.
Members worshipped Eulogia, a fake goddess of eloquence. They glorified pirates, and reportedly hatched schemes of world domination at the "Tomb," an imposing block of windowless granite, furnished on the interior with fittingly morbid décor such as coffins.
The Tomb is rumored to have a landing pad on the roof for the society's private helicopter. And members conduct initiation rituals in the rear courtyard.
Ron Rosenbaum is a columnist for the New York Observer and Yale classmate of George W. Bush, a Bonesman. He lived next to the Tomb and even managed to secretly record an initiation ceremony.
Here's how he described it...
"There is a devil, a Don Quixote, and a Pope who has one foot sheathed in a white monogrammed slipper resting on a stone skull. The initiates are led into the room one at a time. And once an initiate is inside, the Bonesmen shriek at him. Finally, the Bonesman is shoved to his knees in front of Don Quixote as the shrieking crowd falls silent. And Don Quixote lifts his sword and taps the Bonesman on his left shoulder and says, 'By order of our order, I dub thee knight of Eulogia.' A woman holds a knife and pretends to slash the throat of another person lying down before them, and there's screaming and yelling at the neophytes."
Rosenbaum also said Bonesmen spend much of their time fixating on death, lying down in coffins, and even desecrating human remains.
Legend has it, in 1918, Prescott Bush — George W.'s grandfather — and a band of Bonesmen robbed the grave of the Apache Indian chief Geronimo. They took the skull and some personal relics, including his saddle, and brought them back to the Tomb. Bonesemen claim they're still there in a glass case.
An Island Unto Themselves
Again, it would be easy to chalk this up to typical collegiate mischief, thrill-seeking, and fraternity, if the group didn't spawn so many powerful members.
A look at the Skull and Bones roster reveals a well-connected network of powerful Bonesmen.
They've controlled the fortunes of the Carnegie, Rockefeller, and Ford families, as well as posts in the Central Intelligence Agency, the American Psychological Association, and the Council on Foreign Relations.
In addition to the Tafts and Bushes, the Bones claim...
And that's just a small sample. Senators, statesmen, athletes, bankers, captains of industry... even actor Paul Giamatti. The Skull and Bones are everywhere, which is shocking considering the group is relatively small.
Only 15 members are admitted each year, which means there's only about 800 living members at any one time. Yet this small network is politically potent.
It goes without saying that the society itself has amassed its own small fortune. The Bones' assets are managed by the society's alumni organization, the Russell Trust Association. The association was founded in 1856 by William Russell and Daniel Coit Gilman, a Bonesman who later became the president of the University of California, the first president of Johns Hopkins University, and the founding president of the Carnegie Institution.
The Skull and Bones even have their own island — Deer Island, located on the St. Lawrence River by Alexandria, New York.
What goes on there, like what goes on inside the Tomb, is a mystery.
Obviously, the Bilderbergs, Freemasons, and Skull and Bones fraternity have considerable sway in global politics.
Again, it's impossible to say what their agendas really are. We only know that they work towards their own ends, using their insider status and unscrupulous means for their own profit and empowerment.
And these are only the most powerful and secretive of the groups out there that do this.
Financiers funnel and hide wealth for billionaires around the globe. Wall St. conspiracies have manipulated interest rates affecting hundreds of trillions of dollars worth of transactions and loans.
Then there are the gold, silver, and currency manipulations, which the elites are trying desperately to throw out of courtrooms, mostly with success.
Retirement accounts are being pilfered by managers that collect kickbacks and bonuses from investments designed to underperform, all while double dipping with account fees.
No wonder there is a constantly growing group of people looking to insulate themselves from the politicians, bankers, and corporate executives trying to limit our personal freedoms and hijack or finances.