Shadowy figures rule over the world, they are known as the Illuminati. Their aim is to tear up the the rights of the individual and create a New World Order. They orchestrate wars and distract the world’s population with mindless media drama. The devil is also in there somewhere. The bread and butter of the modern conspiracy theorist, the Illuminati are probably the most well-known conspiracy theory next to who shot JFK, and why the 9/11 towers were destroyed. But, the question is who are they really?
There is no denying that the world we live in today is one of unequally distributed power. Five of the richest men in the world own more than 50% of global wealth. The haves and the have nots are clear to see. Whilst, the majority of the world provide the driving force behind the world’s economy, a few live off profiting from the masses’ hard work becoming richer and richer. In short, the majority of the world is under the control of a clique of rich people.
The injustice of this situation is for many is insufferable. However, in a world where the aim of most human activity is to become rich, few are likely to question the reasons why there are rich and poor people. From this position of knowing that there is injustice and being unable to accept the cause, people fantasize and create their own theory. Cue the Illuminati.
Who are the Illuminati? And who supports them?
The original Illuminati was a Bavarian secret society of intellectuals that existed during the 1700s. Their aim was to enlighten the world and oppose repression, including the effects of religion on society and the abuse of state power. Understandably, for those in power, the Illuminati was a threat, so along with other organisations like the Freemasons, the Illuminati were outlawed. Over time, the story of these intellectual dissidents became conspiracy theory. Instead of people trying to bring a bit of scientific reason to the world, they became shadowy puppet masters pulling the strings of power. From the Battle of Waterloo to modern day fluoridation of the public water system, each a step in gaining world domination and forming the New World Order.
The followers of the Illuminati theory see the influence of it. At its core the Illuminati conspiracy theory is at its core about inequality and power. The conspiracy theory covers up the truth and disempowers people from resolving the problems they see. The theory, it can be suggested, comes from a lack of criticism towards capitalism created in part by the denouncement of anti-capitalist thought in the global community. People feel like there is a great conspiracy afoot, but in reality, they are really experiencing capitalist inequality and the disempowerment that it entails.
Those who support this inequality are helped by conspiracy theorists such as Alex Jones from Info Wars. Jones, through his shouting rants about the Illuminati and their suggested actions, misdirects those beginning to ask the salient questions about inequality created by capitalism. To confuse the matter further, Jones and Info Wars also pose as anti-capitalists. By featuring articles and “news” about the difference between capitalism and their supported economic system free enterprise. They are also outspoken critics of what they term crony capitalism. In essence, banging the drum for supporting the mechanisms of capitalism, but not its inevitable outcome of inequality.
Furthermore, the spread of neo-liberalism has led to further divisions in society. With many people becoming isolated and unable to connect with others, creating distrust and worry. In some respects, belief in the Illuminati is a form of escapism from this situation. This escapism being a better option than accepting the isolation and powerlessness that capitalist inequality brings. Added to this, much of society has become indoctrinated into the consumer mindset i.e., the customer is always right. Thus, the individual, or the customer, has an impeachable perspective on the world. In other words, they cannot be wrong and the Illuminati must exist because they say so or even better the products they consume say so. The secret society is everywhere. Every politician, judge, and banker is part of the secret society. Popular music, they say, is used to indoctrinate the masses, and along with other entertainment forms, dumb them down as well. There are even some that suggest that the Illuminati are trying to raise the devil. Everything from voter fraud to the content of rap music is seen as evidence for the Illuminati’s influence on the globe.
The Illumianti and the Dominant Ideology
In short, the phenomenon of the Illuminati is an economic relationship born of injustice. The rich have power and poor do not. The rich’s power means that they have a leading role in deciding what happens in society, both nationally and internationally. It is this power that many take as evidence of the Illuminati, due to the lack of opposition to the capitalist way of production.
This lack of opposition can be described through the idea of dominant ideology. The dominant ideology is like a box, that people in society take items from. Certain ideas are in the box, others are around the box. It is easier and more acceptable, to take out and use ideas that are in the box than those that are around the box. This means that it is more likely that people will choose the ideas from the box rather than those outside. As society has a “capitalist box,” people who live in that society are more likely to take ideas that support capitalism than not. It is thus simpler to fantasize about the Illuminati than it is to question the inequality and powerlessness that capitalism causes for the majority of people.
The origins of the dominant ideology can be described in terms of how products are produced in society. Society can be described as two locking parts, the economic base and the political superstructure. The economic base forms the foundations of the society, it provides the means of producing goods that are necessary to live. The political superstructure grows from the economic base and steers it. For example, if farmland farmed by free men is the main source of production (the economic base). There is an interest in owning more farmland in order to accumulate more produce. Those who own more than they can farm themselves employ people to farm the land. Through owning more land and employing people become landowners and have a bigger say in how society is run and the ideas within society (political superstructure).
In today’s global society, the rich decide over the poor. The rich became rich by having control of the controlling the economic base and as a result the political superstructure. Factory owners, stock brokers, politicians, and the like have a common interest in maintaining their own position within society. It is thus beneficial for them to distract and limit the poor through a pro-capitalist dominant ideology. Those who do not accept the inequality that capitalism produces are still stuck in the capitalist ideology. As a result, they base their questioning on capitalist ideas, making it more reasonable to fantasize over a shadowy elite trying to take over the world than an economic system that is based on exploitation.
This means that a potential force that could affect the current capitalist system becomes idle in its resistance to it. These idle dissidents are stuck in a limbo of knowing the “truth” but not taking action to change society. Thus, the capitalist society is maintained and protected.
In the End
In conclusion, the conspiracy of the Illuminati is a symbol of capitalist inequality. The followers of this conspiracy are stuck in a position where they see the inequalities of the capitalist system but still, base their thought processes on the ideas of capitalism. This results in a form of idle dissidence, where the individuals see the problem yet do not take action to resolve it. Instead, using the idea of the shadowy elite as a means of escaping their reality and stay in a position of powerlessness.
Interested in stopping the Illuminati, otherwise known as the rich?
Read “A Handbook to Ending Injustice”.