Back before the Rennaissance when freedom was just a memory, countless secret societies arose, exchanging new thought and values in coded messages.
These secret-societies were hotbeds for Science, Experimental Politics and Experimental Medical Procedures.
It is no surprise that in this dusk of western liberty we find ourselves at the same crossroads, when the best the world has to offer seeks safety in obscurity.
It is no surprise, that the best nations and best ideas were mostly forged by members of such secret societies. e.g. Voltaire, George Washington, Benjamin Franklin.
Read this Wired Article about how substitution ciphers and secret societies helped protect developments in cataract surgery.