Every bureaucracy strives to increase the superiority of its position by keeping its knowledge and intentions secret…

Every bureaucracy strives to increase the superiority of its position by keeping its knowledge and intentions secret. Bureaucratic administration always seeks to evade the light of the public as best it can, because in so doing it shields its knowledge and conduct from criticism… The pure interest of a bureaucracy in power, however, stretches far beyond those areas where purely professional interests might justify the demand for secrecy. The concept of the “official secret” is the specific invention of bureaucracy, and nothing is so fanatically defended by the bureaucracy as this attitude, which cannot really be justified beyond these specifically qualified areas. In facing a legislature, the bureaucracy, motivated by a pure lust for power, will battle every attempt of the legislature to gain information by means of its own experts or from interest groups. The so-called power of legislative oversight is but one means by which a legislature can seek such information. But bureaucracy inherently welcomes a poorly informed and hence a powerless legislature—at least in so far as ignorance somehow coincides with a bureaucracy’s own interests.

—Max Weber, Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft, ch ix, pt 2, pp. 730-31 (1918) (S.H. transl.)

On memory reconsolidation

For example, if a small child consistently receives frightening anger from a parent in response to the child expressing needs, the child learns not to express or even feel needs or distress and not to expect understanding or comfort from others. This learning can occur with no representation in conscious thoughts or conceptualization, entirely in the implicit learning system. The child configures him- or herself according to this adaptive learning in order to minimize suffering in that family environment. Later in life, however, this same learned pattern has life-shaping, extremely costly personal consequences. The learnings in this example are very well-defined, yet they form and operate with no conscious awareness of the learned pattern or its self-protective, coherent emotional purpose and necessity. From outside of awareness these learnings shape the child’s and later the adult’s behavior, so the individual is completely unaware of living according to these specific learnings. The neural circuits encoding these learnings are mainly in subcortical regions of implicit memory that store implicit, tacit, emotionally urgent, procedural knowledge, not mainly in neocortical regions of explicit memory that store conscious, episodic, autobiographical, declarative knowledge.