by Catherine Austin
is repugnant in
a free and open society;
and we are as a
opposed to secret societies,
to secret oaths,
and to secret proceedings."
John F. Kennedy
Amy Benjamin's landmark analysis "The Many Faces of Secrecy"
was published in the William & Mary Policy Review in October 2017.
It addresses the
"systemic secrecy crisis" in
the United States.
Benjamin is a
lecturer at the Auckland University of Technology (AUT) and is a former
attorney at the US Department of Justice.
Her published abstract describes her analysis as follows:
"Political secrecy in
the United States has never been more studied - and less
understood - than it is today.
This irony is due in large part
to the slippery nature of the phenomenon:
in different guises depending on the area of governmental
activity under consideration.
In the classified
world of the U.S. 'national security' state, secrecy results from
affirmative governmental acts designed to enforce a sharp
distinction between official and public knowledge.
In the outsourced and
technocratic worlds of governmental contracting and economic
management, secrecy results from quiet acts of exemption of
whole areas of decision-making from the normal processes of
underestimated the magnitude of the political secrecy that
besets American society, and misconceived prescriptions meant to
manage it, because they have failed to recognize that they are
dealing with the same challenge in different form across
This Article attempts to effect, for the very first time, the
kind of comparing-of-notes that is needed for a proper
assessment of the scope of political secrecy.
It introduces a
simple yet indispensable typology - direct versus indirect
secrecy - that enables us to recognize the many different faces
Once we do so we are
in a position to realize that we are confronting a systemic
For various reasons
and under cover of conflicting rationales, large swaths of
policy-making have been placed beyond the review-and-reaction
authority of the American people, to the detriment of even the
most humble conceptions of transparency and democracy."
The Many Faces of Secrecy
September 18, 2017
While I was in Auckland,
I had the opportunity to interview Amy for the Solari Report.
We discussed her concepts
of direct and indirect secrecy and explored in detail how,
indirect secrecy is engineered so as
to make it difficult, if not impossible, for the general
population to understand what is happening around us - in the
government, in the economy and the financial markets...
fiscal policy (making sure you do not have accessible
central bank and government financial disclosure so you can
understand "how the money works")
government operations and intelligence to private
secret agreements and transactions through international
It is a challenge to
understand how so much is kept secret.
Once you understand the
mechanics and infrastructure, however, that engineers this growing
divide between "official reality" and reality, the world we are
living in today starts to make a lot more sense.