But does it mean they are?
For as long as there has been conspiracy theorists, three words have struck fear into their hearts and minds: new. World. Order.
An idea of unrelenting paranoia, "new world order" theories essentially deal with the idea of one world government. Many proponents of such theories have kicked their rantings into high gear recently, as the ultra-secretive Bilderberg group meets in Ottawa.
Daniel Estulin claims the Bilderberberg group is a group of powerful people bent upon establishing a monolithic super-state, which would force the world to be united under one government, constitution, religion and currency. He claims that they have already had their fair share of successes: " ...you're seeing it right now as you have NAFTA, the North American Free Trade Agreement, and you have the European Community (EC)," Estulin insists.
Yikes. Certainly, this is scary stuff.
More notably, Estulin concludes -- using information that he says has been supplied to him by concerned CIA, MI5 and Mossad agents -- that the group pulls the strings of the mainstream media, deciding what will and what will not be considered news in the following year. He claims that they discuss how best to eliminate resistance to their agenda (the alternative truth movement and American Christian patriots have been reportedly been considered in recent years). Ultimately, he suggests the Bilderberg group would take control of the UN -- newly empowered with the ability to directly tax all citizens of the world -- in order to complete its goal of world unification.
But imagine what it would mean for the world if Estulin's frightening theory were true.
For one thing, it would mean that many people who have participated in this conference and who are, we are lead to believe, political opponents are actually complicitly working together toward the same machavellian goals. For example, Liberal Prime Ministers Pierre Trudeau and Jean Chretien have both attended this conference. In 2003, while serving as leader of the opposition, current PM Stephen Harper attended.
This would suggest that Chretien and Harper were "playing for the same team" as it were -- even as they faced each other across the parliamentary floor. Certainly, this would be a conspiracy unparallelled in Canadian history.
Certainly it wouldn't only be Canadian leaders who would be cooperating with each other in this vast conspiracy. The heads of dozens of major corporations -- who, by nature, must compete against each other on a regular basis, have also attended. Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry attended in 2001. In 2003, Republican Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld attended.
This is only a sampling of people who have appeared at Bilderberg conferences -- the group, which claims its purpose is to foster understanding between North America and Western Europe, is shrouded in astounding secrecy. At this year's conference, the Brook Street Resort has expelled all of its guests, and is allowing nobody -- which the exception of a very select few, who have undergone stringent security checks -- is being allowed in or out of the building, or even the parking lot. Unlike other high-profile events, where the arrivals of participants are covered extensively by the press, the Bilderberg conference takes place under a complete media black out -- one that Estulin claims is self-imposed by the media elites who attend the conference on a regular basis. Simply put, we the public don't know who attends the conference.
Certainly, this is disquieting. The presence of people such as Henry Kissinger (who Victor Marchetti identifies as a leader of the C.I.A. "cult of intelligence") doesn't exactly help to lay the suspicions of conspiracy theorists -- or even the general public -- to rest.
If the concernts of individuals such as Daniel Estulin are simply paranoid rantings, perhaps there is no reason at all for the secrecy surrounding the Bilderberg conferences. But if they aren't up to anything, then why all the secrecy?
Perhaps there is more going on under our noses than the Bilderberg group (or the alleged "new world order") would like us to believe. The question is: what?
It's a fair question.