Monday, June 26, 2006

Bilderberg jumps the shark

Is it just me, or has all the talk about the Bilderbergs become silly?  Twenty years ago, they may have been a little more important, and slightly conspiratorial.  Now, they have become somewhat of a joke.  Not only is the meeting no longer any kind of secret, but the press, at least in Canada, covered the meeting as if it was the most newsworthy event happening in Canada (probably because it was the most newsworthy event happening in Canada !).  The Ottawa Citizen had pictures of the attendees, obviously taken with a long lens at the airport or the hotel, spread across most of its front page.  Paris Hilton’s love life is more secret than the Bilderberg conference.

The list of attendees has become so large that it is impossible to have a truly secret meeting.  How are Richard Perle and David Rockefeller supposed to have a conversation about what kind of rifle to use to blow Hugo Chavez’ head clean off when they are surrounded with swarms of two-bit politicians and bureaucrats?

The Bilderberg conference has degenerated into a meeting where semi-important people get to feel fully important by being invited to hob nob with a few really powerful people.  It is a way for people whose self-worth depends on serving important people to pad their resumes.  Its only real purpose now is to serve as the debutante’s ball for future extreme right-wing politicians, who are shown around the group to ensure that they are not covert commie pinko fags, and are worthy of being installed as the next political leaders. 

Fascination with the likes of the Bilderbergers is a manifestation of one of the two main types of conspiracy theory.  It has long been the most common form of conspiracy theory, the idea that the whole world is run by an identifiable cabal – aristocrats, Jews, Freemasons, Illuminati, Council on Foreign Relations, Bilderbergers.  The idea arose at the same time that democracy started to take over politics, and it was based on the assumption that the elite groups would conspire behind the scenes to regain control of lost power.  The Big Conspiracy helped to explain why power in the people seemed not to make things any better, and seemed not to reduce the power and wealth of the aristocracy. 

This type of conspiracy theory is largely nonsense, and obviously nonsense, and does a lot of harm to what I consider to be real conspiracy theory, which is the simple idea that political crimes are the same as any other crime, and should be investigated using normal forensic methods, and punished using the regular justice system.  Real conspiracy theory might not lead to a new utopia, but it would go a long way to ensuring that democratic political systems work the way they are supposed to, and that the interests of the average person aren’t lost behind the interests of the corporadoes and warmongers.  Focusing on the likes of the Bilderbergers distracts our attention from the real task at hand, and gives ammunition to those who would try to stop us from using methods available to us now to improve the world.