In my experience with people, I think folks are far too likely to read in planning and malice where simple stupidity is a clearer explanation.
I’ve known a ton of folks in the “elite” and most of them are just as stupid, greedy, and selfish as everyone else.
I think all governments tend to gather more power over time as people who work for the government want to keep their individual job security and pay. Eventually people become dependent on the government to solve their problems, and each new problem they ask the government for a solution that it is too eager to provide even though it cannot do so.
I think the most likely sources of apocalypse will come from for general AI being developed by smart people being greedy and wanting money or power. Or a manmade pandemic being put out by a totalitarian government. Or a dumb politician not understanding MAD well enough and using a nuke.
It won’t be some shadowy elite that somehow knows everything and plans everything.