Well, not SO secret, just that nobody pays attention to it.
Many Americans know that the founding fathers were mostly Deists. A Deist is one who believes in "God as watchmaker"...IE, God set the universe up, and let it run without further interference.
So it's obviously no surprise that the founders set our government up the same way (With the notable exceptions of Patrick Henry and Alexander Hamilton, who objected for very different reasons.). In fact, given article V, it's even arguable that they set up a social program, designed to make the citizens of the union more free and more happy as time went on.
And it worked. Slavery was abolished (though not without cost), women got the right to vote, the average life of the common man became better and better, for about 190 years.
Problem is, the program was based on a model, and the model was - as all models are - flawed to some degree. This caused errors to appear, errors which grew with every iteration (or generation, in this case), until the system began to break down.
For example, World War I was predictable at the time of the founding, and was probably taken into account. World War II, on the other hand, was an error caused by errors made in 1918, and probably couldn't have been imagined by the founders. Recessions were undoubtably taken into account. The dustbowl and the depression, probably not so much.
We've now been cycling monstrous errors for 60 years, and the effects became noticeable about 40 years ago, serious 30 years ago, and untenable 10 years ago. We exist in a broken Machine in a horrible reality that Machine built for us, not out of malice, but out of bad data...Small errors magnified over decades, until there are a million small problems, and a few huge ones, that the system simply can't cope with anymore.
You can't really fix it, or hit the "reset button", as the Ron Paul crowd would like to do, because you can't change the past, and you can't make history go away without creating a worse monster than you started with.
The idea of "E-Democracy" won't help, either, because changing the controls on a broken machine doesn't fix the machine, it just adds further complexity and makes the problems worse.
If allowed to continue, the end result will be either an autocracy or an oligarchy (something guaranteed by Ron Paul's ideas, and those of the "E-Democracy" crowd, incidentally). The founders probably knew this would eventually happen...They were nothing if not students of history.
You have to wonder if they saw this coming, and wondered if we'd be smart enough when the time came to develop something completely different, a new social program that would be able to carry on where theirs finally failed.
And, well, if not, we had 220 years. Not a bad run.
Okay for now,