Grasping at Straws
The notion that Masonry, or rather, any society that is or is not secret can be construed as "bad" or at the very least "influential" has always
been carried out by grasping at far reaching topics to tie together to create the Grand Plan.
This put me, of course, in a tight spot. How can one simply say that a society that is private is not maliciously secretive if there is nothing that
I can provide as solid evidence?
But alas, there is a way.
There being no proof of the contrary, that in fact Masonry secrecy manipulates it's members and the societies around them, one must deduce that after
several hundred years of no Grand Plan being discovered it does not exist.
If it does, and that I am ignorant of it, the sheer volume of skill taken to keep such a secret well.. secret .. for so long, then I would sit in awe.
Because in my studies of histories, societies, and governments both current and past.. It is that no one secret is EVER kept. The list of Government
sponsored secrets, plots, conspiracies and blunders.. black projects, proxy wars, assassinations, economic manipulation, wars started on lies..
They ALWAYS come to light.
So how is it then that one group of decentralized Masons (there being no "head of Freemasonry.. or even "head of Masonic Lodges") .. have wielded
control of society in general, it's government, and all through strict secrecy?
And any story brought to light is debunked, repeatedly, as none hold the weight of evidence and quite often, can't even get primitive facts
So we can concede then that in order for Freemasonry to in fact wield secrecy as a weapon to use against society in general .. there must be the
Centralization: A central command of Freemasons that "run the show" so to speak. This must be to control the goal, aims and achievements of
Principle: An idea, or a founding principle to guide the Masons .. one goal accepted by Masons.
Government: A Government that can withstand consistent change and still keep centralized secrecy.
Bureaucracy: Because Masonry in it's self is by nature Bureaucratic, we can deduce that this centralized power will be as well.. the nature of how
Masonry is formed by elected offices, and an ever revolving chain of command.
Funds: Ah yes, dirty money. Does Masonry even have the financial ability to carry out this diabolical plan, what ever it may be?
But most importantly a secret.
What is the Masonic secret? .. How we function in a meeting? What we discuss? .. Is my opponent suggesting that a grand scheme is in the works quite
simply because we don't post our financial business and lodge voting records on the Sunday Times?
Yes, light, I would call that Asinine, as well as childish.
Centralization: There is no centralized Masonic body. There is no Head of Grand Lodges, there is no Head of all Masons. Without a centralized
Masonic government, there cannot be a single goal of Masonry. And also without it, there cannot be:
Principle: Because there is no unified governing body that runs in political parties, there cannot be an agreed upon principle to stand by. Masonry
it's self is the ritual, which you can read easily online. I know Masons of all political backgrounds.. if we aimed to covertly corrupt, we would
need to agree on a goal, and that would be nearly impossible..
Government: Masonic governments are elected once a year by a vote from Lodge officers from all over the state at Communications. All masonic law is
as well .. including a public report of finances. Positions change once a year, with a MWM rarely sitting more then a year. Almost always, the head
of the Masonic Grand Lodge's ideas and methods are different..
Bureaucracy: Masonry is designed in a way that the "checks and balances" prevent change.. any major change has to go through paper work, then
presented once a year at a Communication. We cannot even expel a person without a formal vote from all lodges..
And Masonic lodges watch the Grand Lodge like a hawk .. especially when it comes to money..
Money: Most Grand Lodges hold balances under $20 million dollars. 90% of that is typically in investment portfolios and is not "liquid". Most
finances come from investment, dividend return, death benefits from members and lodge dues. And donations of course. Many Grand Lodges currently
have negative balance sheets, and must include a full report of where and how they got money and where they spent it to the Lodges..
From the outside, Masonry is opaque.. from the inside it is incredibly transparent.
He does not address the impact that the value of such secrecy has on defining what type of organization masonry is.
You being not unintelligent, should be able to discern here is that Masonry is a Private Institution .. because there is no single secret that the
organization or it's members revolve around. That being the case, and that the only things kept private are rituals and Lodge Meetings, one must
admit that because the supposed "secrets" have nothing to do with the community and only to do with Freemasonry, it is Private, and not Secret.
Unless you believe there is a Grand Plan, I would be highly interested in hearing what it is.
only members of the organization become stronger in terms of their social standing.
That's true. It's hard not to benefit when be excepted into a society of people with one thing in common: Masonry
Of course, the same is true for people who join the Republican Party, who join the Church, the Marines, the Foreign Legion ..
Anyone who joins an organization of any kind will serve to benefit in some way then someone who has not joined.
The reason: Those who don't join, cannot benefit as they are not associated with them
Only makes logical sense.. I don't expect to gain something from the Knight of Columbus, seeing as I am not a Knight, why would one expect to benefit
from being a Mason, if they are not a Mason?
The academic literature has shown that these types of organizations harm trust and democratic values in our communities.
Only the insecure fear secrets and privacy.. Governments for instance, fear privacy because privacy is a right to withhold information .. this is why,
even in your beloved "Democracy" (built by many Masonic ideas..) has grown, like all Governments, afraid of secrets.. and you see wire tapping bills
and domestic espionage..
And there is nothing in the mandates of any Democracy that says "privacy or secrecy" is inheritally "bad" for the said Democracy.. Democracy is
only a form of Governing, the way it's processed, in the end, it is no different then any other government in history.
We talk about organizational emphasis on secrecy as a value. That is what is repugnant to our society and our democracy.
And you can throw textbooks all day, but you still have failed to detail
1. A Masonic conspiracy revolving around Secrecy
2. How said supposed conspiracy actually negatively effects society in everyday life.
All organizations are inheritantly different, if they where not different, they would be the same organization. Many, many organizations are private,
in fact, the vast majority, and yet Masonry is singled out for ridicule..
Because it's different, it's hard to understand, and people are afraid of it through weak minded insecurity of the unknown.
I have not once heard a legitimate excuse for hating Masonry. And I have never once heard a legitimate conspiracy involving more then a select few
Masons who act as individuals.
The Table Said WHAT?
Your table is making the notion that communities benefit or loose based on "bonding capital" that is to say, the presence of an organization that
has "tight nit groups of people"
Like say, Churches. It does not specify one particular organization and, quite frankly, is irrelevant to a communities financial well being.
Freemasons are "average joe's" .. Some prosper more then others.. I don't do so bad my self, but that's because of me, not because of Masonry.
1) Freemasonry does get involved in "bridging social capital" in the sense that "favors are returned" as with any organization. In fact, we once
pulled a favor to get us a spot working a concession stand at a baseball game.
Because of this incident of bridging social capital, the regions economy plummeted.
2) Simple.. the philosophies of Freemasonry indicate that to truly be a Mason you must be Searching for the Light. As quirky as it sounds, it's the
God honest truth. If Masonry was transparent from the outside in.. well you wouldn't search for the Light, you would already have dissected it,
taken what you wanted, and walked away before ever joining.
Part of the benefits of Masonry is putting trust into strangers and embarking on a journey that will test your ability to trust, believe, strive
through personal "embarrassment" and situations you would never find your self in, in the outside World.
If every one knew the rituals of Masonry, Masonry will have lost it's meaning...
There would be no need for a Lodge. We could all just get drunk at the local pub and sing drinking songs. It essentially wouldn't be any
Masonry was never meant to be a social club.