The Bilderberg Group is an annual private conference of approximately 120 to 140 invited guests from North America and Europe, most of whom are people of influence. The original conference was held at the Hotel de Bilderberg in Oosterbeek, Netherlands, from 29 to 31 May 1954 as a reaction to the growing Communist threat of the Cold War.The success of the meeting led the organizers to arrange an annual conference, as the group itself writes on its website “designed to foster dialogue between Europe and North America. About two thirds of the participants come from Europe and the rest from North America; one third from politics and government and the rest from other fields.The conference is a forum for informal, off-the-record discussions about megatrends and the major issues facing the world. Thanks to the private nature of the conference, the participants are not bound by the conventions of office or by pre-agreed positions. As such, they can take time to listen, reflect and gather insights.There is no detailed agenda, no resolutions are proposed, no votes are taken, and no policy statements are issued.” It could be argued that at least now the group has a website they are being open about the secrecy.

The Bilderberg Group met this week in a hotel in Watford amid tight security.  Guests included George Osborne, the Chancellor; Ed Balls, the Shadow Chancellor; and Ken Clarke, the Cabinet Minister who also sits on the group’s steering committee as well as Peter Mandelson, David Cameron, Bill Gates and Henri de Castries, the chairman of Axa, Peter Thiel, “a billionaire venture capitalist”, Thomas Enders from EADS, the defence manufacturing company, and Peter Sutherland, the chairman of Goldman Sachs. Add to that mix European Royals, arms dealers and the founders of Google and Amazon and you get the picture. The great and the good, The Establishment, the Masters of the Universe. Allegedly, topics discussed included,  how the US and Europe can promote growth, the way ‘big data’ is changing ‘almost everything’, the challenges facing the continent of Africa and the threat of cyber warfare. The politics of the European Union, debt, advancements in medical research, the Middle East and ‘current affairs’ were also debated.

Many of us have no interest or see little problem with the Bilderberg Group. A few hundred protesters gathered near the hotel with placards demonstrating their distaste and David Icke and the American radio host Alex Jones spoke out against the proceedings. The main problem is the hypocrisy that goes along with the lack of transparency. Let’s not forget that David Cameron and Nick Clegg pledged when they formed the coalition to lead the most transparent government to date. So why is the Prime Minister (and his Chancellor) attending this secret conference? Many see the lack of transparency as a conspiracy and an agent of a new capitalist world order. One major opponent of Bilderberg is Daniel Estulin, a 46-year-old Lithuanian and the author of the best-selling The True Story of the Bilderberg Group. It argues the group’s founders were former Nazis, and it now gathers to choose presidents and control the media.“Bilderberg is not a conspiracy theory. It’s a conspiracy reality,” he writes from Moscow, where he is filming his weekly show for Russia Today, the Kremlin-backed broadcaster. “It was a vehicle through which private financier oligarchical interests were able to impose their policies on nominally sovereign governments. The idea is the creation of a global network of cartels, more powerful than any nation on Earth, destined to control the necessities of life of the rest of humanity.”

Whether the Bilderberg group is a meeting of like-minded capitalist or a gathering of seriously wealthy corrupt individuals hell bent on increasing their personal wealth and power at the expense of freedom and the common man,I can’t say for sure. What I can say is that where our Royalty, Cabinet ministers, members of the opposition and CEOs of British companies are concerned, we in our demopcracy should have transparency. What I mean is, if we as taxpayers are paying for this How Much and Why? All items  discussed must be minuted and in the public domain immediately and personally I would go one step further and insist all the meetings are televised live, then there need be no conspiracy theories springing up around the group.