Dolan refers to a shadowy elite group who desire and work to keep the public in check. The people are controlled by, to quote Adam Smith, the “masters of mankind,” the elite who maintain all for themselves and none for the rest. If there does exist a cabal of controllers, how then can we have “honest disclosure?”
1. Those in power, we assume, have no interest in releasing true information. Since the systems in place for the public to access government officials in power requires the use of the system itself, can anyone actually trust what the system produces? To put it in a simpler way; if the Holy Grail of Disclosure is held by a cabal who control the system, will the system they control actually be able to release that information, and could the public ever trust the information as being true?
2. We must also explore the idea of the “masters of mankind.” Is there a group of people who actively function to control the public, or is it more complex than that? Are the ideological systems in place, such as capitalism, liberal democracy, etc. what actually control us? Is it a small cabal of men that run our world, or is it that we have imprisoned ourselves within our own comfortable and stabilizing ideologies? Dolan makes an interesting comment in the interview in regards to this; he claims that some people like being spoon fed by the government, that they prefer the security of the lie. However, what if there is no cabal spinning lies? What if we live the lie because we have to? Our instinctive human need for safety, comfort, stable sources of food, water and shelter, are provided by the systems we collectively believe in. To bastardize Noam Chomsky (forgive me, oh great one), we’ve manufactured our own consent because it is simpler, easier, and less risky. There may be no cabal of masters who run our lives because there does not need to be; perhaps we’ve happily sold our own souls to the ideological systems that keep us fed and watered. Does this still include an unequal distribution of power? Of course, these systems, especially capitalism, rely on inequality- otherwise they cease to function.
3. Whichever it is, a literal group of masters of mankind, or simply our own hegemonic enslavement to economic and political ideological constructs; how do we expect a “pure disclosure” to occur? With every single democratizing revolution, such as civil rights, feminism, and even punk rock- the mechanisms of the governing system, controlled by masters or its own inherent operation, adjusts to the new wave for its own self- preservation. As the tide shifts towards undoing the key aspects of the system, the system negotiates those changes into itself. During the 1960’s and early 70’s, the anti-establishment movement of the hippies demanded a fundamental change to American domestic and foreign policy, fueled by anti-consumerism and racial equality. The systems of power simply adjusted to the call; they marketed and promoted the message, spun folk vinyl records, and produced films based upon those ideals. The message was sanitized and sold; not because the system wanted to destroy the ideas behind hippism, but because the system had to adapt to ideological changes. If Disclosure was to occur, the system would have no choice but to adjust itself again, to negotiate the messages and ideologies into itself. The most interesting moments of Disclosure would be how media outlets like CNN or FOX report it. Would H&M sell #Disclosure t-shirts? Would Cabela’s manufacture UFO or Alien Preparedness Kits? Would the National Rifle Association put out the call for people to arm themselves in case the aliens come back? The “purity” or “truth” of the disclosure announcement would die before the words were finished being uttered. Within seconds, media outlets, various corporations, and lobby groups would explode into properly ideologizing the information for consumption within our liberal democratic capitalist system.
As with any massive shift humanity has made, the controlling systems have shifted alongside it. Personally, I would look forward to Disclosure, The Broadway Musical.
Dolan makes some interesting points in this interview, and I would love to discuss some of these with him (I’m free for a Skype call anytime!). Disclosure, like every democratizing movement before it, would suffer the exact same fate of its predecessors. The controlling social systems in place, by hook or by crook, will maintain themselves as they always have. If some shadow cabal government does rule the world, it would be much simpler to dismantle the controlling systems than if we, as social creatures, have established those systems ourselves out of fear and necessity. Cabals and shadow governments can be killed; our own systemic ideological constructs are impervious to bullets. Dismantling our own mechanisms of control would require their replacement; and is trading one type of servitude for another really what we are after?
Is Disclosure something we should want? Of course. Anything that aims to bring equality and democracy is a good thing; just be ready to Instagram it...