... is the government itself.
Governments killed at least 300 million people in the last century alone.
People still revere anyone who acts like an authority figure and has some token of official capacity, even if that person is leading them up a slaughterhouse ramp. Without this incredible stupidity present in 90% of the human race, this death toll would have been impossible.
Nowadays you don't know who is dumber - the government or the people who invest them with so much credibility they have never earned and in fact demonstrated they will never have. Government in the second half of a society is a magnet for psychopaths and sociopaths, who are a kind of people who excel at nothing other than getting people killed. They can't build anything. They can't fix anything. They don't have any solutions, they are capable only of breaking whatever is there now. They are a corrosive influence on everything they come into contact with.
The rage of the psychopath and sociopath comes from constant exposure to the irrefutable evidence they are sh*tty, horrible barren destroyers coupled with a deep narcissistic feeling they are "entitled" to rule. The more that reality hammers in their worthlessness, the harder they fight back against the feeling that they are corruption incarnate.
This is what causes the cyclic nature of civilization. Neanderthals contributed the innovators, thinkers and problem solvers ... Homo Sapiens contributed the killers, more killers, rascals and homicidal maniacs, lunatic rapists, killers, rabid bloodthirsty madmen, killers and bastards. No civilization lasts longer than the time it takes for the "normal people" (psychopaths and sociopaths) to get their boots on (about a hundred years in) and start doing what they do best. Wrack, ruin, rape and destroy. Other stuff, not so good. Sapiens is good at tearing it all down after Neanderthal has built it up.
Their real hope is that they will kill off enough witnesses that they will then get to write the history books. Of course, these books will be all about how wonderful they were with little mention of their rivers of blood and the skies of fire that characterized their regimes. Oliver Cromwell and Napoleon are two examples of men who were sanitized by their biographers after they had exterminated sufficient numbers of people to suppress any contradiction.