Article in Reader Supported News
By Mike Lofgren, Moyers & Company, 2014
Notes made by Russ Faure-Brac 2/25/2014
- There is the visible government known as the establishment that is theoretically controlled by elections. There is also THE DEEP STATE, a hybrid of elements of government and parts of top-level finance and industry that governs the US without the consent of the governed as expressed through the formal political process. It is relentlessly well entrenched and floats freely above the gridlock of the Republican and Democratic parties.
- It consists of:
Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (judiciary)
Some vital federal trial courts
Some members of the Defense and Intelligence Committees
854,000 contract personnel with top-secret clearances
Corporate executives who rotate into governmental agencies or become
White House advisors
Wall Street, which supplies the cash to the political machine
Think Tank experts
Silicon Valley companies
- The Deep State believes in the “Washington Consensus”: deindustrialization of the economy, outsourcing, privatization, deregulation, the commodification of labor and American Exceptionalism (the right and duty of the US to operate around the world with coercive diplomacy, boots on the ground and an ignoring of international norms of civilized behavior).
- The Deep State represents the rise of a plutocracy (government by the wealthy), political dysfunction and vampire-like extraction of value from the American people. It is so heavily entrenched that it is almost impervious to change, but it doesn’t learn from its own failures (such as Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and the itch to bomb Syria).
- The Deep State is not omniscient or invincible. There are now signs of deep resistance to it – declining response to cries of terrorism, a public weary of endless quagmires in the Middle East and budget cuts by the Tea Party restricting the silent, uninterrupted cash flow that the Deep State needs.
- History has a way of toppling the alters of the mighty, such as the USSR and East Germany. State systems with outsized pretentions to power have reacted by either 1) saying that nothing is wrong or 2) realizing their political culture is fossilized and is incapable of adapting to the times.
- The national punditry is split into two camps: 1) the “declinists” see a broken, dysfunctional system incapable of reform and 2) “reformers” who want to turn the nation around with:
- Public financing of elections
- Government “insourcing” to reverse the tide of outsourcing government functions
- A tax policy that values human labor over financial manipulation, and
- A trade policy that favors exporting manufactured goods over exporting investment capital (?).
- Needed is a figure with the serene self-confidence to tell us that the twin idols of national security and corporate power are outworn dogmas that have nothing more to offer us. Thus enthralled, the people themselves will unravel the Deep State with surprising speed (change from the bottom up that can happen fast).