Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
October 28, 2019

Endorsing The Deep State Endangers Democracy

Since Donald Trump was elected president the New York Times' understanding of the 'Deep State' evolved from a total denial of its existence towards a full endorsement of its anti-democratic operations.

February 16, 2017 - As Leaks Multiply, Fears of a ‘Deep State’ in America

A wave of leaks from government officials has hobbled the Trump administration, leading some to draw comparisons to countries like Egypt, Turkey and Pakistan, where shadowy networks within government bureaucracies, often referred to as “deep states,” undermine and coerce elected governments.

So is the United States seeing the rise of its own deep state?

Not quite, experts say, but the echoes are real — and disturbing.

March 6, 2017 - Rumblings of a ‘Deep State’ Undermining Trump? It Was Once a Foreign Concept

The concept of a “deep state” — a shadowy network of agency or military officials who secretly conspire to influence government policy — is more often used to describe countries like Egypt, Turkey and Pakistan, where authoritarian elements band together to undercut democratically elected leaders. But inside the West Wing, Mr. Trump and his inner circle, particularly his chief strategist, Stephen K. Bannon, see the influence of such forces at work within the United States, essentially arguing that their own government is being undermined from within.

It is an extraordinary contention for a sitting president to make.

March 10, 2017 - What Happens When You Fight a ‘Deep State’ That Doesn’t Exist

American institutions do not resemble the powerful deep states of countries like Egypt or Pakistan, experts say. Nor do individual leaks, a number of which have come from President Trump’s own team, amount to a conspiracy.

The diagnosis of a “deep state,” those experts say, has the problem backward.
Though Mr. Trump has not publicly used the phrase, allies and sympathetic news media outlets have repurposed “deep state” from its formal meaning — a network of civilian and military officials who control or undermine democratically elected governments — to a pejorative meant to accuse civil servants of illegitimacy and political animus.

September 5, 2018 - I Am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration

On Russia, for instance, the president was reluctant to expel so many of Mr. Putin’s spies as punishment for the poisoning of a former Russian spy in Britain. He complained for weeks about senior staff members letting him get boxed into further confrontation with Russia, and he expressed frustration that the United States continued to impose sanctions on the country for its malign behavior. But his national security team knew better — such actions had to be taken, to hold Moscow accountable.

This isn’t the work of the so-called deep state. It’s the work of the steady state.

December 18, 2018 - Blaming the Deep State: Officials Accused of Wrongdoing Adopt Trump’s Response

President Trump has long tried to explain away his legal troubles as the work of a “deep state” of Obama supporters entrenched in the law-enforcement and national-security bureaucracies who are just out to get him. Now junior officials and others accused of wrongdoing are making the case that the same purported forces are illegitimately targeting them, too.

October 6, 2019 - Italy’s Connection to the Russia Investigation, Explained

President Trump and some of his allies have asserted without evidence that a cabal of American officials — the so-called deep state — embarked on a broad operation to thwart Mr. Trump’s campaign. The conspiracy theory remains unsubstantiated, ...

October 20, 2019 - They Are Not the Resistance. They Are Not a Cabal. They Are Public Servants.

President Trump is right: The deep state is alive and well. But it is not the sinister, antidemocratic cabal of his fever dreams. It is, rather, a collection of patriotic public servants — career diplomats, scientists, intelligence officers and others — who, from within the bowels of this corrupt and corrupting administration, have somehow remembered that their duty is to protect the interests, not of a particular leader, but of the American people.

October 23, 2019 - Trump’s War on the ‘Deep State’ Turns Against Him

[O]ver the last three weeks, the deep state has emerged from the shadows in the form of real live government officials, past and present, who have defied a White House attempt to block cooperation with House impeachment investigators and provided evidence that largely backs up the still-anonymous whistle-blower.

October 26, 2019 - The ‘Deep State’ Exists to Battle People Like Trump

The president and his allies have responded with fury. Those damning testimonials are part of a political vendetta by “Never Trumper” bureaucrats, members of a “deep state” bent on undermining the will of the people, they assert.

But what is this “deep state”? Far from being a tool of political corruption, the Civil Service was created to be an antidote to the very kind of corruption and self-dealing that seems to plague this administration.

This development is disconcerting. If the deep state is allowed to make its own policies against the will of the elected officials why should we bother with holding elections?

The Democrats are stupid to applaud this and to even further these schemes. They are likely to regain the presidency in 2024. What will they do when all the Civil Service functionaries Trump will have installed by then organize to ruin their policies?

Posted by b on October 28, 2019 at 15:52 UTC | Permalink

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This post assumes that the Deep State is partisan. IMO they are not. They use the duopoly and media to effect a "managed democracy". I also believe that the Deep State is remarkably united on promoting commercial interests (their version of "progressive") and the empire (slyly referred to as "world order" or "stability").

This post is also accepting of what Caitlin Johnstone calls the "establishment narrative matrix" which divides us (along partisan political lines) while promoting acceptance/support for the national security state.

Welcome to the rabbit hole.

Jackrabbit !!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Oct 28 2019 16:13 utc | 1

Deep state. AKA rule of law.

Posted by: BraveNewWorld | Oct 28 2019 16:16 utc | 2

I want to quickly add my admiration for b's hosting discussions like this. Even when I disagree with him, I respect b's contributions.

Thanks b!

Jackrabbit !!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Oct 28 2019 16:18 utc | 3

We shouldn't forget that also during the Kerry years, there were times when he or the President was countered publicly by 'the deep state'. I believe there was such a time during the initial adoption of the Iran accord. Rather than look at it purely from a partisan point of view, one has to look at the deep state as a set range of priorities that are agreed or non-negotiable throughout a large part of the unelected civil service. Unfortunately I believe that in the US, the penchant for war, the worldview which has the US as a moral missionary, and the antipathy to socialist policies are central to this, no matter what the color of the ruling party is at the time.

Posted by: Josh | Oct 28 2019 16:40 utc | 4

The reason the NYT is acknowledging it now is that the Deep State's existence is being exposed and proven by the investigations into Russiagate. Because it's gradually becoming undeniable, the NYT feels it has no choice but to put out the message: 'Well, the Deep State isn't that bad anyway, even when it plots to overthrow the President of the USA'.

Posted by: Brendan | Oct 28 2019 16:43 utc | 5

Here are some fascinating comments about the state of democracy in the United States from an interview with Vladimir Putin in July 2019:

American democracy is pretty much a non-entity but Washington is perfectly content with the way that things exist because it works in their favour.

Posted by: Sally Snyder | Oct 28 2019 16:48 utc | 6

Jackrabbit - I don't know where you are from, but you seem to be lacking a fundamental understanding how democracy works. b' summed it up brilliantly in one sentence: 'If the deep state is allowed to make its own policies against the will of the elected officials, why should we bother with holding elections?'
Whether we like it or not, Trump was elected as president. The American election system has established that beyond any doubt. His policies are not uniformly accepted, but he is within his legal rights to make policy decisions. Do I like what he does? Mostly not. But I do accept that's the way democracy works, and if the majority of US voters does not like it either, January 2021 we will have a new US president. That is how the US democracy works. That is the law of the land - or constitution as its often referred to. The deep state is an abomination and needs to be castrated.

Posted by: Lorenz | Oct 28 2019 16:52 utc | 7

kudos for your cogent, compelling presentation to pin blame where it belongs. it's hard to like trump but his enemies are so wacky and dishonest, he may survive these death throes of empire.

Posted by: bolasete | Oct 28 2019 16:58 utc | 8

thanks b... it seems that the nyt would like to define what the deep state is = civil service.. talking about this is helpful as i see it, although the nyt is trying to cover its ass as i see it.. i mostly think of the deep state as the cia.. if members within the cia become partisan it is no longer fulfilling the role of the civil service... if the nyt wants to claim it is just doing it's job, how do they explain the mueller investigation then? they can't have it both ways...

Posted by: james | Oct 28 2019 16:59 utc | 9

Since the 1990s the US Intelligence Services (NATO also) went liberal in outlook and recruitment drives. They opened their doors wide for those considered undesirable in the past. The best men and women left, the mediocre gained command and this is the result. However, they are not to be underestimated. At smearing an elected president they are quite good. Sadly so, GMJ

Posted by: GMJ | Oct 28 2019 17:03 utc | 10

Thanks b.

You asked:[.]"why should we bother holding elections?"

In "western democracies" SElections are the great pretend events held every 4-5 years. Take the day off and forget the trip to the 'Voting' Booth.

See the EU-UK Brexit saga.
In 2014 had forecast that in 2016 the U.S. would become ungovernable.

Russiagate, Ukrainegate are distractions as the USD$ is by-passed added to the imploding debt.

Posted by: Likklemore | Oct 28 2019 17:09 utc | 11

Lorenz @9

I'm not a political partisan. I'm interested in democracy/governance, history, international affairs.

I agree with b's comment: "... why should we bother with holding elections?" But IMO the rot is deeper than he believes.

Jackrabbit !!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Oct 28 2019 17:10 utc | 12

To the money people and the power people behind the institution that we refer to as our government, the entire govermental structure is a bit like a piece of property. They let it slip out when they say things like, 'our democracy', or 'our society'. They say it like they would say 'our chevy', or 'our ford'.

Posted by: Joshua | Oct 28 2019 17:22 utc | 13

The Deep State has little to nothing to do with "rule of law." It is simply the law of the jungle: might makes right, exercised behind the scenes by the true power brokers and their minions. It is not partisan. It does use both parties to put on a show to distract the people while owning and using major parts of both. It is they who have us in Syria now to steal Syria's oil. It is they who were enraged that Trump, an outsider, won the election contrary to all expectations and predictions. It is they who control most of the media. They are not the friends of the American people; in fact, they are our mortal enemies. They have hijacked our government and our foreign policy, which they operate largely for their own interests and not in the true interests of the American people. They use the media to sell us on what they are doing, appealing to our pride, our patriotism, the project of spreading peace, prosperity, democracy, and freedom to the world, the project of promoting human rights, the project of prosperity--whatever works to convince us that we should be in Iraq, and Afghanistan, and Syria, and Kosovo, and in hundreds of military bases around the world. They equally exploit left and right; thus dividing us, they conquer.

Posted by: Arthur | Oct 28 2019 17:22 utc | 14

If the deep state is allowed to make its own policies against the will of the elected officials why should we bother with holding elections?
"We" don't hold elections. The elections are required to buy the deep state legitimacy to do its thing.

Posted by: Norwegian | Oct 28 2019 17:23 utc | 15

not sure why I still watch Bill Maher's show but this last weekend's Real Time had an absolutely jaw dropping moment for me. It started out with him having a former CIA agent as one of his guests (he even gushed over Brennan a few months back) and he then made a few stupid remarks about the russians done it but the cherry on the whipped cream was when he referred to "the deep state heroes".


Posted by: dan of steele | Oct 28 2019 17:24 utc | 16

Richard | Oct 28 2019 16:30 utc | 4

Yes, indeed, the 'Deep State' is there and of course the NYT is happy to write nice things about it, because it exists to support the same thing the NYT exists to support - 'government of the millionaires, by the millionaires, for the millionaires'!...

I think you are undoubtedly right!
My understanding for the last 70 years has been (more or less) that the Privy Council in the UK and a similar shadowy body in the US, for which I had no name until recently, was running the country's affairs practically independently of any elected representatives or bodies. Yes, PMs and Presidents had some influence, but not anything like as much as we, the hoi poloi, were led to believe.

Posted by: foolisholdman | Oct 28 2019 17:25 utc | 17

< HREF+"">deep state or Trump <=here is some interesting rot. as it is coming to be called.
'If the deep state is allowed to make its own policies against the will of the elected officials, why should we bother with holding elections?'
Whether we like it or not, Trump was elected as president. .., and if the majority of US voters does not like it either, January 2021 we will have a new US president. That is how the US democracy works. That is the law of the land - or constitution as its often referred to. The deep state is an abomination and needs to be castrated. by: Lorenz @ 9

Lorenz suggest you read Article II of the Constitution you quote.. American voters c/n vote for the President or the Vice President. Americans qualified to vote in general elections cannot vote for the persons to occupy either of the two Article II places in the USA (President and VP). The P and VP areappointed not elected by the ordinary governed qualified to vote Americans (those Americans are allowed each only three votes: 2 votes out of 100 jobs for a Senator from their state, and 1 vote for 1 job about 425 jobs in the House? Read it. The two persons are elected by the electoral college, so there is no voice of the governed people in the presidential election, now, last year, or ever. More over even if there were, the people have no reasonable input because of road blocks the republic has established as to who is allowed to be a candidate for such an election, and because of the mass amount of money the establishment charges for the ticket to be a viable candidate so as far as the non able to vote for President-voters are concerned, its select the candidate in the top coat or the one with blue suede shoes.. might as well be select Mickey Mouse or Donald Duck.
The history of candidates is that they have not keep any of the campaign promises and there is little the electorate can do about it. Voting by Americans to fill jobs in the USA is a useless exercise in false excitement. .
America is a democracy, but the USA is a republic.

Posted by: snake | Oct 28 2019 17:43 utc | 18

deep state or Trump

'If the deep state is allowed to make its own policies against the will of the elected officials, why should we bother with holding elections?'
Whether we like it or not, Trump was elected as president. .., and if the majority of US voters does not like it either, January 2021 we will have a new US president. That is how the US democracy works. That is the law of the land - or constitution as its often referred to. The deep state is an abomination and needs to be castrated. by: Lorenz @ 9

Lorenz suggest you read Article II of the Constitution you quote.. American voters c/n vote for the President or the Vice President. Americans cannot vote either of the two Article II places in the USA (President and VP) are not elected by the ordinary governed qualified to vote American. The two persons are appointed by the electoral college, so there is no voice of the governed people in the presidential election, and more over even if there were, the people have no input into who is allowed to be a candidate. America is a democracy, but the USA is a republic.

my cat walked on the keyboard. please delete the last post.. and retain this one.

Posted by: snake | Oct 28 2019 17:49 utc | 19

NYT's position over the deep state is perfectly in tune with the doctrine of the "vital center". Published in 1947, Schlesinger Jr.'s magnus opus is valid until our times, and serves as essentially the centrist/moderate manifesto.

The theory of the "vital center" states that what differentiates liberal democracy from "totalitarianism" is the fact that it enjoys a pulsating political core, made of many different ideologies that go from Left to Right (the "political spectrum") and which dispute the power of the government through periodical elections in a peaceful manner. This way, the ideology that is not in vogue today can emerge victorious tomorrow, given that it brings the answers to new problems the incumbent ideology couldn't solve. This "non-extermination" pact, where the victorious ideology spares the defeated ideologies, would give the liberal democracies - Schlesinger assumed - an internal dynamism the USSR didn't have.

The existence of a society with a political spectrum characterized the existence of "freedom". Indeed, that's the practical definition of freedom most people in the First World countries use nowadays. Other times, the old French Revolution (bourgeois) mean of "freedom to do business" (freedom of enterprise) is used - but that's more of a neoconservative usage.

The "vital center" doctrine is also the root of what we nowadays call "pluralism", and what the "far-right" defines today, perjoratively, as "multiculturalism" and/or "Cultural Marxism". The conservatives, it's good to note, never lost sight of the origins of the Western modern "center-left": most of them were ex-communists. They never accepted the people who commanded the CIA in the cultural front as legitimate liberals and always considered even the center-left another form of communism.

But there's a catch to Schlesinger Jr.'s doctrine. He stated the political spectrum should never be representative of all the ideologies possible, but of all the ideologies acceptable. And what was "acceptable"? Only the non-totalitarian ideologies. What are those "non-totalitarian ideologies"? The ideologies that promote/respect freedom. But "freedom" is the existence of the political spectrum, it's a circular argument: in practice, he's using a rhetoric that promotes the liberal ideologies as natural and the "totalitarian" ideologies as "unnatural". Indeed, that's the terminology he uses: "totalitarianism" is a "disease".

Here's the part that is related to this blog's post: what if the people, democratically (i.e. under a free society), elects (freely), a "totalitarian" government? Schlesinger Jr. doesn't answer this question, although he raises it in his book. The only thing he states is that economic prosperity is key: as long as there's good economy, an society of abundance, the people will "naturally" vote for pro-freedom governments. If that didn't happen, then he stated the elite should feel free to use whatever means necessary to crush the elected "totalitarian" government and all the popular uprising that appeared.

According to him, this was legitimate, since the elite was enlightened and knew better what was the best for the people; and/or that it was fruit of Soviet covert operations. This is where the sophistication of his argument becomes apparent: liberal democracies are not perfect, they are not 100% free (but they are free to some extent), they are fragile -- but they were better than Soviet communism (where there was 0% freedom) and thus should be protected at any cost. If we think about it, this is literally the concept of deep state.

If we analyze Schlesinger Jr.'s doctrine, we can clearly see that the newer generations which succeeded his are perfectly following the guidelines as established in the post-war. The millenials are not degenerate, as the remaining boomers and gen. X people are stating: they are carrying the post-war torch with care and zeal. The deep state has always existed in liberal democracies: they were just hidden in plain sight, in the form of a collection of powerful public servants, experts, rich people, and parallel institutions that have always influenced whoever was the POTUS. They influence the POTUS one way or the other, since the USG is simply too big and too complex for just one person to manage.

Let's just remember: there was a plan to assassinate FDR in 1934 (botched because one of the general who was supposed to lead the militia invasion refused to be coopted and blew the whistle) and Kennedy was assassinated under Lyndon B. Johnson's orders. It's not a matter of the existence or not of a deep state, but at what degree the POTUS will obey it, and what price he is willing to pay.

Posted by: vk | Oct 28 2019 17:53 utc | 20

Rachel Maddow/Bill Maher, so admired in the past for their uncompromising liberal and progressive stances in the past, have become the ranting anti-Trump obsessives who are simply unwatchable any more.

Posted by: chet380 | Oct 28 2019 17:55 utc | 21

There are those who post here who would have you believe that the deep state installed Trump, then attacked Trump, then all as part of some elaborate scheme had Trump attack them back. That brings us directly to this point where the deep state is now at least partially exposed.

This was to achieve what? Increased military spending? How does that logic work? They could have arranged such spending increases with Clinton instead of Trump. It isn't like Clinton ever even hinted that military spending should be curtailed.

But no, the imperial FUDster wants you to believe that deep state/establishment/CIA deliberately blew a big chunk of their cover for what boils down to no reason whatsoever. The deep state has gained nothing since the 2016 elections other than more of the public's eyeballs turned in their direction and a further erosion of the public's confidence in the corporate mass media upon which the deep state/establishment depends.


The truth is that the deep state is staggering from failure to failure. You can celebrate that this is a symptom of the empire dying, but it is a dangerous period.

Posted by: William Gruff | Oct 28 2019 18:03 utc | 22

If Deep State is defined as the career bureaucrats/military of a specific nation then let me define a new term that maybe Trump represents (because it sure as hell is not the masses/global commons).

The new term I would propose is Deep World to define the elite that are transnational/trans-state and have been behind/owning organizations like the BIS (Bureau of International Settlements - the central bank of Western central banks) that has been around since 1930

And I would agree with Richard | Oct 28 2019 16:30 utc | 4 and foolisholdman | Oct 28 2019 17:25 utc | 17 about this but would say that instead of millionaires, the Deep World folks are trillionaires....and they are in the process of culling the rabble millionaires.

I would conclude by noting that to the extent the Deep World have the masses focusing on the Deep State, they continue to succeed in maintaining their control of the levers of Western governments behind the curtain.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Oct 28 2019 18:05 utc | 23

The word democracy means the sovereignty of the many; a fairly common historical circumstance when it comes to small matters and small places, but rare on the larger level. Classical Athens came close for a while; occasional national referendums that are retrospectively actually respected are occasional forays into democratic political procedure. Also on occasion, people rebel en masse, with popular support, and overthrow the regime in power, and thus in effect exercise an active temporary democratic procedure. People can also en masse refuse to cooperate - passive resistance. This too if effective and broadly supported is a democratic procedure.

In general terms the democratic idea rests largely on the belief that the broad public interest is best served by broad public sovereignty. And the constant references to democracy by oligarchic or narrow political power are indications that such power seeks to gain the appearance of legitimacy by cloaking themselves in the terminology of democracy.

A voting procedure in which honest and full discourse based on good information underlies the political choosing, and with fair play broadly predominating, can be described as a democratic process. But this is a rare accomplishment. But even in such a case, the result has for long typically been a so-called representative government which will be contaminated by, a secret servant to, or overtly predominantly representative of, oligarchic interests, corporate interests, transnational financial power, military related interests, and secretive networks and organizations.

The 'deep state' meme has been of benefit in serving as shorthand for and drawing more public attention to the fact of hidden sovereign or decisive power, or hidden power that attempts to exercise in effect sovereign power.

But it also becomes a 'lazy man's load', by loading up two words with too much baggage.

So, for example, pertaining to the United States, there is the Bilderberger and associated transnational power and influence wielding network; there is the military complex and empire and its associated corporate network; there is the federal bureaucracy; there are the many secret 'police' agencies; there is the propaganda/mind control system complex; there is the private internationally influential financial system; there are the bought or blackmailed/compromised politicians. This is a partial list and all these systems intersect, with stresses and strains, and together form a System of of in effect sovereign power.

It is the case that in every direction in the incomplete list just given, there is at best illegitimate power being wielded, and at worst the most horrific of crimes: wars of aggression. Somewhere in between are indigenous outrages like 9/11 or Oklahoma City or the JFK coup d'etat.

One hallmark of the hidden power is its 'above the law' status; its basic impulse is totalitarian.

Trump to some extent represents a hail Mary impulse in the American people to throw a monkey wrench into this deeply pathological trajectory that the United States has gone on. When he speaks at the UN about the future as belonging to patriots not globalists, or when he refers to draining the swamp, whatever level of sincerity or insincerity his words represent, they more or less represent the wishes of millions of Americans who know they've lost their country and want it back.

Posted by: Robert Snefjella | Oct 28 2019 18:10 utc | 24

A few important things to consider when discussing and doing an analysis of Deep State politics:

(1) The State is never a single actor with a unitary interest, rationale or capacity (factions must be identified as well as the policy stance of these same factions).

(2) All State functions have evolved historically (analyze closely the evolution of Central Banks, Intelligence Agencies and their relationships with private sector power-for example linkages between Silicon Valley and intelligence, the Federal Reserve and private banking and finance).

(3)Look closely at the supposed oversight capacities of elected officials. Are there really checks and balances presently in place? (Select committees of intelligence etc.)

(4) Study in detail how the different factions of the State structure are actually financed.
Does the present National Security State have any funding constraints? Do elements of the bureaucracy in co-ordination with Congress simply budget expenditures and then go ahead and spend the money?

(5) Examine closely the growth of the National Security edifice since WWII.(Importance of 9/11 as leverage for unrestrained expansion). Examine the expanding power of the Federal Reserve since the Great Recession of 2007-2008.

(6) Is it a fact that State structures are, indeed, no longer controlled by constitutionally controlled democratic institutions and elected representatives?

Posted by: James Kulk | Oct 28 2019 18:13 utc | 25

Frank Zappa around 1986--

"Government is the Entertainment Division of the military-industrial complex."

Elections fit right into that entertainment division./

Posted by: arby | Oct 28 2019 18:17 utc | 26

@ Posted by: Robert Snefjella | Oct 28 2019 18:10 utc | 24

Athens wasn't democratic in the sense we have today. In Athens, only the people could vote, but the people were only the adult men citizens (the rest were slaves, women and non-citizen residents).

And, according to the post-war liberal doctrine, the deep state isn't "totalitarian", because "totalitarianism" presupposes the acceptance of only one ideology. According to the fathers of the post-war West, the deep state is there to protect a confederation of ideologies, which make the entire "political spectrum" of a liberal society. It would be legitimate for the deep state to try to topple Trump because they deem him as outside this political spectrum - in this case, the "far-right" (i.e. he went so far to the right end of the spectrum he "fell out" of it). But it wouldn't be legitimate for them to topple, e.g. Obama and W. Bush.

That's why censorship in the Western Democracies happen under the form of the "politically correct culture" ("PC Culture"). Western democracy is still authoritarian, the only difference being they are, allegedly (they propagandize as such), more flexible and tolerant with the exercise of their authority.

Posted by: vk | Oct 28 2019 18:19 utc | 27

@Gruff. So the 'deep state' just ignored the reality of the Electoral College? Seems to me the best way to install the candidate of choice would be to control this. IMO Trump is not from outside of the deep state but their preferred candidate, otherwise the EC would not have installed him. The rest is just smoke and mirrors and matters not as you either see it for what it is or hate Trump because......Trump. Anything that gets accomplished these days benefits they anyways. It matters not if the Deep state is being exposed as you say because Everybody knows already and because Polarisation. TDS is real. There are the most social minded caring people who would murder thousands just to see him burn......because..... Trump. It's a truly VIRAL MEME.

Posted by: Tannenhouser | Oct 28 2019 18:22 utc | 28

A few months ago Trump talked about 're-opening the old mental health institutions. Now Barr introduces

Posted by: ADKC | Oct 28 2019 18:23 utc | 29

This isn't rocket science folks. The so-called "deep state" is nothing more than it ever was, a cabal of very wealthy individuals with enough $ to purchase enough "elected" individuals to change the rules of the game in their favor.

This has been going on throughout human history, and the goal is to subvert democracy so the wealthy can control the game of life, which we're all involved in.

In this day and age, here in America, it is reaching it's Zenith, behind a new corporate
capitalism, fostered by monopolies, and moving around the globe.

Buy enough politicians, change the rules, win the game.

Posted by: ben | Oct 28 2019 18:27 utc | 30

A few months ago Trump talked about re-opening the old mental health institutions. Now Barr introduces a thought crime program. It's not difficult to see where this is going!

(Apologies for accidental post @29).

Posted by: ADKC | Oct 28 2019 18:30 utc | 31

I'm not a political partisan. I'm interested in democracy/governance, history, international affairs.
Posted by: jrabbit-troll/donkey-troll | Oct 28 2019 17:10 utc | 14

So claims an operator who is clearly paid by Deep State interests to confuse and obfuscate and waste precious MoA space with their repetitive and verbose idiocy. Is this the best you can find, Deep State? Pay is too stingy, probably.

Posted by: BM | Oct 28 2019 18:34 utc | 32

@ jr 1

B is simply stating that democrats are sowing the seeds of their own destruction when applauding the actions of the deep state. There is a lot of truth to it.

However, I agree with you that b is mistaken to believe that somehow partisan politics in this country can be saved or that even if it could the parties would provide the necessary check on the other to safeguard sustainable government.

So we come to an impasse yet again and it is indeed what you personally rail about constantly at the bar. Is djt really an outsider to the establishment and is there a concerted effort by deep state globalists to oust him? Or is it all theater?

Well my friend, not that you would agree with me, but in order to orchestrate this whole djt thing, which includes Hillary, the fbi, the cia, three branches of our government, our fp, Obama and whatever else one can mention, you would need a level of showmanship and planning that would make its architect resemble god. But that would be giving tyrants too much credit. They are mostly dumb you will find for thinking that they can just improv their way out of this mess and that the people will encourage them to subvert their own government.

The truth of the matter is is that anyone who thinks this is all Oscar-nominated wresting is fucking crazy.

In other words: djt is the world-historical figure that Hegel talked about that would come at the right time and at the teleological end of globalism. Or Putin is and potus is just his puppet. It doesn't matter.

Posted by: Nemesiscalling | Oct 28 2019 18:37 utc | 33

P.S. IMO, these "deep staters" aren't undermining DJT they're assisting him. They've never had a more willing servant than DJT, by him devolving govt., it takes away the only force powerful enough to challenge the anti-democratic forces at work today in the U$A.

DJT is all theater, all the time. "Distracter in Chief", is his real title.

Posted by: ben | Oct 28 2019 18:37 utc | 34

Since Donald Trump was elected president the New York Times' understanding of the 'Deep State' evolved from a total denial of its existence towards a full endorsement of its anti-democratic operations.

NYT discovers Deep State. Precious...

Psychopathy 101: Exposure isn't a threat, it's an opportunity

Don't worry - the little people never win. That's a myth, but a useful one.

If your treasonous machinations against the will of the people are exposed, then 1) point the finger at someone (or something) else, 2) demonize that 'common' enemy, 3) proclaim your honorable and heroic fight against this threat, and 4) recruit the little people - they work for YOU. That's why they exist.

Once the little people identify with your side, they are unlikely to reconsider the enemy you pointed out. You're off the hook no matter how damning the evidence against you or preposterous the evidence is against the enemy.

It's also necessary to keep it simple for the little people's tiny simian brains. Make sure you shout the loudest and repeat the most frequently about your preferred 'enemy' to overcome the voice of anyone pointing back at you (especially) or pointing at some other enemy (dilutes your intended narrative). Remember, all the other psychopaths will be doing the same thing at the same time. Amplification through the MSM is most helpful.

Anyone that tells you there is one common identifiable US Deep State is your real enemy.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Oct 28 2019 18:41 utc | 35

The very best example currently of the "Deep State" in any rational sense is the Federal Reserve, with its built-in levers of control by private interests, and its equally built-in superiority to mere democratically elected officials. The fact that it is rarely cited as Deep State is because there's nothing actually very deep about. The Deep State is BS even in foreign countries. The rich have always had leverage in the state, and they have always factionalized. And the factions are only about tactics and strategy. Everyone raving about the Deep State is cracked.

The fake idea is all about pretending Trump is the will of the people. That's why the scumbags insist that Trump actually won the mandate of the people, relying on the moronic machinery of the Electoral College as a substitute for the inconvenient reality that more people supported Clinton the monster who has been supported by the media for decades. (That last is irony.)

Posted by: steven t johnson | Oct 28 2019 18:48 utc | 36

Israel Shamir has identified the whistleblower as Alexander Daniluk.

Posted by: lysias | Oct 28 2019 18:50 utc | 37

Israel Shamir has identified the whistleblower as Alexander Daniluk.

Posted by: lysias | Oct 28 2019 18:50 utc | 38

But surely Richard Haas and the Council on Foreign Relations are selfless and wise solons who just want to help the American people?!

Posted by: Roy G | Oct 28 2019 18:55 utc | 39

@25 james kulk... that is a more thorough overview on the deep state.. i like how you have framed it in the points.. thanks.

Posted by: james | Oct 28 2019 18:57 utc | 40

If I was a Deep State asshat that wanted to move the country to the right and manufacture consent for the hardships of war, I wouldn't demand that they do what I say - that would be counterproductive - I'd just show them things that would cause them to naturally gravitate to the right: marxist radicals, immigrant criminality, 'Open Borders' crazies, LGBT bathroom activists, partisan 'Deep State' conspirators, corruption of lefty politicians, etc.

Some will say that kind of thing is impossible. The Deep State is too stupid and fractured and fool-hardy and focused on looting.

Yet, oddly, this is exactly what's happening as the media plays on the increasingly outlandish reactions to Trump and Trump is given free reign to attack the radical left - and thereby look like the solution to the crazies that would tear everything down.

<> <> <> <> <> <> <>

I can picture a closed-door meeting of a few powerful Deep Staters in 2014. Suddenly one blurts out: what we need is our own Putin! (populist-hero-strongman)


Jackrabbit !!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Oct 28 2019 19:04 utc | 41

@ vk | Oct 28 2019 18:19 utc | 27

The word totalitarian can be quibbled over; I used it with in mind not just the global ambitions/impulses that lie behind say "full spectrum domination" as American military policy, or Professor Quigley's disclosure of international private banking's ambition to set up an in effect system of hidden global control above politics, or the extreme effort that has been made to set up a global surveillance capacity that seems to have the ambition of capturing say the private moments of 'dignataries' and dissidents around the planet, or Google's ambitions/reach, or the the Rockefeller 'competition is a sin' approach. I'm also thinking of phenomenon such as say the 'deep state' murder of Sweden's Prime Minister Olaf Palme in 1986, or the killing of RFK by not Sirhan Sirhan, and the capacity and staying power of "the System' to maintain a public facade/false 'official' narrative pertaining to those and countless other criminal 'events' over generations.

If not precisely totalitarian, maybe 'extremely arrogant control freaks'?

Posted by: Robert Snefjella | Oct 28 2019 19:05 utc | 42

Deep state or ordinary bureaucratic sclerosis, aka rule by committee?
For example, the awkward outcome wrt troops hijacking Syrian oil. It is not a practical solution for any US party--if there's a deep state, they're unhappy about it too. But there are also a slew of other vested interests to take into account with any decision process. Too many cooks does not imply a common unified entity. It is typically a lack of a clearly elucidated and fleshed out vision/agenda allowing wiggle room for all sorts of things. I could imagine that "getting out of Syria" or "getting out of Iraq" would fit.

Perhaps we need to simply lower our expectations.

Posted by: Bobzibub | Oct 28 2019 19:09 utc | 43

Deep state derives from a natural human tendency. Those that have it (assets) believe that they have a right to keep it and get more of it, and so they do whatever is in their power (which is a lot) to exercise that "right." The US government is a good model for it, with its world "rules-based" malignancy, so people can draw from that example. And then add to that that the US has its caste system which is seldom mentioned, sort of like India.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 28 2019 19:23 utc | 44

There is no reason that I can see why the Athenian political system would not work with a less restricted citizen body.

Posted by: lysias | Oct 28 2019 19:39 utc | 45

The Elite and the Consensus

Throughout the 19th century in the UK and the beginning of the same century in the US, elites worried about extending suffrage to the masses, initially just universal male suffrage, later on universal suffrage to all adults, male and female. They finally realized at the beginning of the 20th century that to continue to control political institutions they only needed to control the discourse through the media (initially just newspapers, magazines and broadsides, later extended to radio, movies/cinema and TV) and motivate people’s choices through fear of anarchy (by creating/tolerating incidents, controlled chaos and criminality), the enemy/other and the unknown, through the use of falsified consensus (especially effective with women) and, as a last resort, through patriotism. They would then be able to channel popular opinion in the direction they wanted.

Under dictatorial, communist and fascist regimes, the opinion of all residents is tightly controlled and no deviations are tolerated, either publicly or in a family setting (children being encouraged to report on parents). People expressing deviant opinions are silenced by imprisonment or if they are considered dangerous enough, accused of some “crime” and killed (“executed”). The result is that when the disparity between the reality people witness and the reports they see in the controlled media becomes too great, these regimes would weaken since the only tool for control would be visible fear and people would be prone to apathy.

The elite in the so-called democracies realized early on that there is actually no need to control everyone in a country. Since the elite’s control is activated chiefly through political institutions and the media, it suffices to control key influencers, i.e., politicians and media players (journalists and TV and radio news reporters and presenters), who are subject to the same severe control as all the people living under dictatorial, communist and fascist regimes. Politicians and journalists deviating from the Consensus (also known as the Deep State) - whatever the elite wants at a particular time - would be initially mocked as proponents of some conspiracy theory if the steps they had taken were known by the public, and if they persist in their deviance from the Consensus and are respected by the public, they are silenced. The means of silencing depends on what the elite need in a given situation. If they feel the need to convey a message ("don't deviate"), the target is publicly assassinated. If they want to eliminate someone who appears to be lovable such as a famous woman, then a discrete plane accident or poison administered after some otherwise non-lethal accident does the trick. If the influencer appears to be someone of questionable health, a fatal heart attack or cancer could be induced. In some situations, especially after a number of assassinations, “accidents”, cancers or heart attacks had already occurred to remove deviant influencers, the elite may decide it might be too dangerous and too suspicious to continue to physically eliminate deviant influencers so, as a last resort, they only place these deviant influencers in situations where they are forced to resign/abandon the position that bestowed influence and thus removed from the public eye.

Posted by: Albertde | Oct 28 2019 19:43 utc | 46

Tannenhouser @28

The deep state/establishment is not all-powerful. They can influence, not control, and they can influence only so long as the public is unaware of that influence. This is why the so-called deep state blowing its cover is a huge deal.

The so-called deep state exists to protect and represent the interests of big business and the rich and powerful. It makes sure that the rest of the state continues to look out for the wealthy. This layer of society can most certainly just dispense with the whole "Democracy Show" and install a CEO for the country instead of going through the election motions. But as expensive and unwieldy as the "Democracy Show" might seem to be, it is still cheaper than that option. Cheaper = more profits and more wealth and more power for the elites. They don't want to pay for a full blown police state if they don't have to.

Because of this when the plans of the deep state/establishment fall apart they must deal with it and try to patch things up on the fly, at least so long as the cost-benefit analysis still favors the "Democracy Show".

Trump was certainly part of the plans of the deep state/establishment, but only as a foil to help make Clinton look good in comparison. Unfortunately for them, the deep state/establishment is so far out of touch with the concerns of common Americans that they don't know how to make Clinton look good to them.

But why Clinton? Because the empire has many plates spinning at the moment. Many regime change operations around the world at different levels of maturity. Many delicate moves in the works that have been planned for literally decades. The Pivot to Asia, fracturing Russia, fleecing the remains of public wealth from the former Soviet states, gaining control of China, breaking up the BRICS, reversing the move to socialism in Latin America, etc.. The Clintons have been in the thick of all of that and are fully up to speed on all of the dirty deeds being done in the dark to build the empire. At this delicate stage, more than anything else, the empire needs internal stability (chaos outside is OK, though). One wrong tweet can wreck years of work.

Trump, on the other hand, has no clue about any of that. He still even thinks that ISIS is America's enemy rather than a mercenary army for the empire. This means that the CIA has not, even to this day, bothered to brief Trump on what they are really up to. That appears to be the consequence of some organizational pettiness and petulance within the CIA, blaming Trump personally for their plan's failure.

If Clinton had won as expected, on the other hand, the operations in Syria and Ukraine and Venezuela and so on could have proceeded without missing a beat. While the efforts of the Syrian military, Russia, Iran, and Hezbollah have been truly remarkable in containing the head choppers, a fair portion of the credit for the demise of ISIS lies with severe disruption of their logistics and command structures due to Clinton not getting installed in the White House.

In 2016 the deep state was "conspiracy theory"... crazy talk. That is entirely the point of the article b composed above. Everybody didn't already know about it. It was the conflict between the deep state and the President that stripped the cover from the deep state and forced the New York Langley Times to partially admit that it exists. This conflict between the deep state and the President would not have occurred had Clinton won the election as planned.

Posted by: William Gruff | Oct 28 2019 19:48 utc | 47

A few weeks ago one of the regular CounterPunch scribes posted a direct plea to the US alphabet agencies to use any method, fair or foul, to ensure the rapid removal of Trump as President. The author went on to claim that anyone who does not support this effort, or who might depict Trump's administration as anything less than a full blown crisis demanding immediate measures, was deserving complete excommunication from American civil life. The author did note the alphabet agencies had a pockmarked record when it came to respecting democratic institutions, but claimed that "the left" would keep them in check following Trump's removal and that there would be no long-term consequence to such a approved precedence.

That is bat-shit crazy talk, but the left/liberal wing has become so completely unhinged by Trump's victory that they will endorse anything should it mean his immediate exit from their consciousness. That their absolutist logic - Trump is a national emergency which requires immediate measures - doesn't hold up, and is fanned by emotive exaggeration, cannot be explained to them. They insist on their position.

Posted by: jayc | Oct 28 2019 19:50 utc | 48

Why all this focus on Deep State?

Let me pose a question. Do any of the Deep State folks own organizations like the BIS (Bureau of International Settlements - the central bank of Western central banks) that has been around since 1930?

If not, then why all the hysteria?

If so, then who are they?

Posted by: psychohistorian | Oct 28 2019 19:54 utc | 49

The people who own the Bank of International Settlements also own the Deep State.

Posted by: lysias | Oct 28 2019 20:01 utc | 50

lysius #37

Thank you, Alexander Daniluk is the man. Standing over the Ukranian Presidents shoulder dripping poison in his ear. I will be interested to see his future career unfold.

Now Daniluk is a true deep stater and has now been Gulianied if I can use that term. Schiff has worked so hard to exploit him and now hide him from the Trump juggernaught and failed again.

Don Bacon #44

Your reference to the broken caste system is perfect.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Oct 28 2019 20:04 utc | 51

Who are they? Lord Rothschild is one obvious candidate.

Posted by: lysias | Oct 28 2019 20:05 utc | 52

@ lysias who wrote
The people who own the Bank of International Settlements also own the Deep State.
I agree and continue to be frustrated by the misdirected energy and ongoing obfuscation of the structural problem of the Western social contract.....those that control finance, control the social narrative.

Left and Right are Pluto's Cave Display creations....there is only Top and Bottom.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Oct 28 2019 20:07 utc | 53


Posted by: psychohistorian | Oct 28 2019 20:10 utc | 54

The Cold War Western so-called democracies allowed a much broader range of thought then than they do now. If they weren't totalitarian then, they are well on the road to becoming it now.

Posted by: lysias | Oct 28 2019 20:11 utc | 55

@ Posted by: Robert Snefjella | Oct 28 2019 19:05 utc | 41

The origin of the term "totalitarianism" (adjective: "totalitarian") is uncertain, but it is almost certain it was popularized through a magazine called "The New Leader", which begun circulating in the USA (East Coast, mainly New York) in the 1920s and continued to be so until the 1950s. This magazine was created mainly by Menshevik refugees (the losers of the 1917 Revolution). It was edited, at its apex, by the infamous Sol Levitas (a OSS/CIA asset).

The magazine claimed to publish articles portraying the cruel realities of the Soviet Union and it is now known that its contents are pure propaganda. Those refugees told incredible stories a la those told nowadays by those North Korean refugees (see the posts in this blog about North Korea's famous "ressurections").

But this, in itself, is irrelevant, because the definition of the term people use nowadays is the one publicized by the CIA crew, that is, Hannah Arendt and co.

According to their definition, totalitarianism is a society which accepts only one ideology. In their minds, that's what the USSR was. But, in reality, what they did was to refurbish the term to try to create a narrative where - in the context of the bipolarity globe of the Cold War - the Western elites could paint the picture not as "red vs blue" or "the pot calling the kettle black", but as good vs evil, natural vs unnatural, freedom vs slavery.

Keep in mind that this operation happened essentially in a time span of three years (1947-1951), and that they were operating in a context of creation of a center-left (Non-Communist Left, NCL in the CIA designation). They were not conservatives, but identified themselves as moderates, some even as socialists (democratic socialists, from where Bernie Sanders borrowed the definition). They lived in a world without the threat of the far-right, in the world of the "keynesian consensus".

But the problem the NCL immediately faced with their "anti-totalitarian" propaganda was that Stalin inexpectedly died in 1953. After his death, Krushchev begun the process of "De-stalinization": well, if the USSR really was "totalitarian", that shouldn't happen. To make things even worse, Krushchev made a speech at the UN calling for "peaceful competition" and, some years later (1969), broke ties with another communist nation, China. Those events eroded the NCL's totalitarism thesis, since there was clearly a "vital center" in the USSR.

Not by coincidence, the end of the 1950s and, specially, the second half of the 1960s, marked the era of the rise of the so-called "neoconservatives" and the decline of the NCL. The neoconservatives originally were a small American trotskyites who developed an overall anti-government stance and an elitist disgust for NCL "pluralism" (vital center). It is from the neoconservatives that came the designation of the term "liberal" as anyone left-wing in the USA. They later spread to dominate the common sense of American society after the 1970s and, after the oil crisis of 1974-5 and the rise of neoliberalism as a practical political doctrine, definitely became the dominant political stance in the USA - a position it enjoys until the present times.

Posted by: vk | Oct 28 2019 20:15 utc | 56

The deep state is much more than the civil service,and was inherited from the British along with common law. It has its own schools and colleges, not quite as obvious as in Britain, but there
anyway. We were taught the real history of events, not the pablum fed to the serfs at my school,
a perfect example of that system,in the UK.
Prime ministers, ministers, MPs.Bankers, Lord Mayors of London,Judges and the top echelon of the civil service graduated its doors over the last seven centuries, nine really but with a century off while the Black Death ravaged the population.
In the words of George Carlin:Its a big club and you are not in it.
You gravely underestimate its power, it is the Establishment, not part,all of it.It has factions,but it is united in keeping control,and its damn good at that.

Posted by: winston2 | Oct 28 2019 20:19 utc | 57

ADKC #31

That is seriously bad news from Whitney Webb. With the CLOUD Act the USA 'law enforcement' will exercise global cicumvention of all civil rights in any court. I would like to see all State Department staff tested to see if their support for regime change is potentially a violent intention.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Oct 28 2019 20:27 utc | 58

All regular barflies know I term the "Deep State" as the Current Oligarchy, and I've presented my reasoning why that's so; and I don't intend to reiterate. Instead, I'll provide some links to previous actions taken by the contemporaneous Current Oligarchy. First and most recent is Escobar's sarcastic pessimism over what he describes as a Netflix coming attraction and--as I nod my head in agreement--concludes:

"The 'died as a dog' movie can also be interpreted as the liquidation of a formerly useful asset that was a valued component of the gift that keeps on giving, the never-ending Global War on Terror. Other scarecrows, and other movies, await."

Next the overall scope of the situation must be enlarged to the entire planet, which has provided the actual stage for Current Oligarchy action since its rise to modern prominence during WW2 and significantly at its end as it worked hard to define the post-war world and mold it to its benefit. The next two pieces are by the same writer, the first describing the great importance of what I pointed to last week--the initial Russia-Africa Summit--and providing the following essential background:

"It is no secret that just as China began outpacing the Americans in African investment in 2007. Rather than acting intelligently to increase genuine infrastructure funding as the Chinese had done, the US Deep State not only continued its outdated debt-slavery practices, but created AFRICOM as a military arm across the continent. Ironically AFRICOM’s presence coincided with a doubling of militant Islamist activities since 2010 with 24 groups now identified (up from only 5 in 2010) and a 960% increase in violent attacks from 2009-2018. Just as western lending has caused a pandemic of slavery, so too has western security forces only spread mass insecurity.

"The fact is that the neo cons infesting the Military Industrial Complex have openly identified both countries as co-equal enemies to the USA and understand that this alliance represents an existential threat to their hegemony. Speaking at the Heritage Foundation last year, former National Security Advisor John Bolton said (without blushing): 'The predatory practices pursued by China and Russia stunt economic growth in Africa; threaten the financial independence of African Nations; inhibit opportunities for US investment… and pose a threat to US national security interests.'" [Emphasis Original]

Two paragraphs prior, the author referenced a previous essay of his to provide the background to why events have gone in a particular direction since 1945. To do so, most readers would get their first introduction to FDR's Veep, Henry Wallace whose role during much of WW2 was to continually enunciate on FDR's 4 Freedoms and how they'd produce the Century of the Common Man at the war's conclusion, which was diametrically opposed to the Current Oligarchy's vision embodied in Henry Luce's Amercian Century:

"While some commentators are trying to spin this emerging re-orientation in global affairs as a mere 'trick to get re-elected', the reality goes much deeper than many realize, as Trump is merely tapping into an American strategy which was firmly established during the 1941-1944 presidential term of America’s President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and his loyal collaborator Henry A. Wallace who had planned a grand design for a US-Russia-China New world order founded upon principles enshrined in the Atlantic Charter and enunciated in his 1942 'Century of the Common Man' speech [Link at Original]."

I could cite much more from that essay, but I encourage barflies to read it. I often allude to the path not taken and cite the internal coup that denied Wallace becoming FDR's Veep in the 1944 election, which would have made him POTUS in late April 1945, and have made that turn one of history's most important What Ifs? For those following closely, there are many parallels of today's events with those of 70-75 years ago that demonstrate the circular and linear nature of history. That brings us to our fourth item wherein we see a member of the Current Oligarchy revive those long hidden skeletons that now form the major focal point of its attempt to remain relevant:

"This bipartisan Russophobia can be traced back decades to the Red Scare paranoia of the Cold War and McCarthyite persecution during the 1950s of suspected Soviet sympathizers in Washington and Hollywood. But for the past three years, since the 2016 election, the Cold War has been crazily enlivened with the 'Russiagate scandal' of alleged interference in American political affairs by Moscow. It was the Clinton campaign, establishment media and her intelligence agency supporters that launched that canard against Trump."

Current holistic thinking and observing combined with enough prior knowledge not only proves the past and present existence of the Current Oligarchy; it shows us how it's relying on its previous success to bail itself out of its present predicament--Trump's policies have destabilized it thanks to its own internal factionalism while it's again threated by the specter of what I'll call the Revenge of the Common Man, having been deprived of the fruits of its labors and sacrifices that began 80+ years ago through the vehicle of Sanders humanism and Gabbard's patriotic revelations of truth.

Posted by: karlof1 | Oct 28 2019 20:28 utc | 59

Wasn't neoliberalism thoroughly discredited by the economic crisis of 2007-9?

Posted by: lysias | Oct 28 2019 20:29 utc | 60

you’d be assuming that they’re partisan. The Deep State couldn’t care less what party is in power, as long as the business of never ending wars, resource plundering and insane budgets stay in place.

Posted by: DannyC | Oct 28 2019 20:33 utc | 61

Posted by: psychohistorian | Oct 28 2019 20:07 utc | 53.

"those that control finance, control the social narrative."

Zero Hedge recently featured a piece in which a 'luminary' declared "These central bankers are clueless..." Maybe it's now more like riding a whale, rather than controlling it?

And the control of the social narrative has certainly been attempted. And until the Internet, considerable influence and some extremely effective taboos were in place for generations. But not long ago the 'faith' of the US public in their mass media was shown to have plummeted from roughly half a generation ago to roughly a quarter now. Now whether the collapse of US adoration of mass media is a global phenomenon I don't know. But "control" of the social narrative by financial controllers is more problematic today.

But when it comes to say the CIA's attempt to control global communications, long ago testified to by John Stockwell, and more recently disclosed and broadened by Udo Ulfkotte, there are definite linkages between CIA and Intelligence Agencies and high finance, but who is in control? And how effective is the attempt?

Or when the US military and British Military for example devote large resources to 'the right message', or when massive corporations hire professional slick liars - Public Relations - to spin their message, is this high finance in control? To some extent there is interlinkage, but again: is there a financial supreme Wizard of Oz or is it much more complex?

Posted by: Robert Snefjella | Oct 28 2019 20:35 utc | 62

Surprised nobody has mentioned this. The Trump crowd has skewed the original meaning of "deep state" to their advantage. The functionaries described by "b" in today's post don't really scratch the surface of the deep state.

At the same time, the NYT and establishment media are taking advantage of this re-definition to hide the real one, as b's article should state.

The original definition of the "deep state"

Mike Lofgren, former Republican staffer claims that Trump is mis-using the term

Posted by: Seth_Rich | Oct 28 2019 20:40 utc | 63

The money-shot from the above linked article:

For Lofgren, “Deep State” was an apt phrase to describe what he wrote was “the big story of our time”: a largely open confluence of entrenched interests that helped explain everything from the war on terror to income inequality.

The essay resonated, so much so that Lofgren turned it into the 2016 book.

Naturally, a book proposing a unified theory of overreach by the military, intelligence, government contractors, big banks, and big tech received a warm reception in left-wing outlets like Salon and CounterPunch. So too, though, did The Deep State get positive notice in the far-right finance blog Zero Hedge, and in the far-right Taki’s Magazine from Steve Sailer, an influential and highly controversial writer who New York magazine called “The Man Who Invented Identity Politics for the New Right.”
Indeed, in the months after Lofgren wrote his original deep state essay, Cambridge Analytica and its then–vice president Steve Bannon were busy discovering — at least according to the whistleblower Christopher Wylie — that the phrase was catnip to conservative voters.

Lofgren began to realize that the idea had become something else in the popular imagination when right-wing commentators blamed the deep state for leaks that led to former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn’s resignation. And as a flood of similar leaks threatened to sink the Trump administration in its early months, reports emerged that the president himself blamed them on the deep state, and allies from Steve King to Newt Gingrich said so publicly.

Of course, Trump’s supporters blamed only one group within the network of interests described by Lofgren’s deep state — career bureaucrats or Obama-era holdovers who were appalled by the anti–administrative state president and wanted to damage him to preserve the status quo. These were an entrenched interest to be sure, but, Lofgren said, not as important as the revolving door between industry, Wall Street, and government that made sure special interests dictated a consistent policy from administration to administration.

Today, posts about the deep state appear multiple times a day in pro-Trump communities like Reddit's /r/The_Donald, where its hidden hand is seen manipulating events as disparate as the death of child star Corey Haim and a DDoS attack against conservative conspiracy site the Gateway Pundit. Wednesday morning, a Daily Caller explainer video about the deep state was the top post on /r/The_Donald.
In response to what he saw as abuse of the term, Lofgren last year wrote a column for LobeLog, “Yes, There Is a Deep State — But Not the Right Wing’s Caricature.”

Posted by: Seth_Rich | Oct 28 2019 20:45 utc | 64

WG @ 47; Excellent synopsis WG, absolutely right on point.

Posted by: ben | Oct 28 2019 20:57 utc | 65

lysias @60--

Yes, but it wasn't destroyed as its main players were rescued by Obama and saved from life in prison. That enabled the Current Oligarchy to double-down, take even greater risks and blow an even bigger financial bubble depicted by figure 3 here. Trump's related to the Current Oligarchy by the fact that he's riding/ridden the same bubble(s) and thus has connections to one of its factions as Pepe Escobar revealed during his coverage of the 2016 election. Since he's tangentially related, Trump's policies have fed them as they've also fed Trump, which has acted as a form of insurance for him. Trump shares a portion of Luce's American Century vision but not its entirety, which has exacerbated a longstanding disagreement between Current Oligarchy factions that goes back to the 1960s of which Senator Fulbright was the leading example.

Posted by: karlof1 | Oct 28 2019 20:59 utc | 66

Rest of Comment @46

This only works in so-called democracies as long as the reality people witness corresponds to the reports in the media. Once a disparity arises and the economic situation degenerates, the same apathy that arises in dictatorial, communist and fascist regimes, arises in so-called democracies.

Today, after the assassinations of JFK and RFK and the forced resignation of Nixon, every president since then until Trump has towed the line. (In fact, Obama enjoyed it.) Trump, being the narcistic fool he is and having the bloated ego he has, is taking on the Consensus, the chief enforcers being the CIA and FBI. That’s why he was elected. If he doesn’t continue to take on the Consensus, he won’t be re-elected.

Posted by: Albertde | Oct 28 2019 21:02 utc | 67

@Psychohistorian #49

Who are they? [the Deep State]

I suggest you follow the link below. To this day certain British parliamentarians refer to themselves as 'Venetians.' The tradition of the Globalizing elite and the Intelligence networks which guide it harken back to Venice.

There are no individual trillionaires per se, for example the 'Rothschilds' are merely one of many families who together participate and own shares in a grounp 'Fondo,' or Fund. When an individual from within this group dies without an heir his shares are returned to the Family. One group of individuals has been demonstrated to hold or otherwise control between 40 and 80% of all assets in existence - that's right, roughly half of everything - by a Swiss study tracing cross ownership of Corporate entities worldwide. It is sometimes refered to as the Octopus of Global Control. It is very real, controlling not just finance, but much more importantly controls English speaking Global culture, and therefore what people think and believe is reality, via a sophisticated and secretive elite based mainly in the UK.

This is the Deep State and it is very real. It's core ideology is Supremacist and Mathusian. Zionism is it's most obvious manifestation. As with everything else the Octopus manages the choices we lower caste individuals can make by managing dialectics. It matters not who you vote for since all your choices are predetermined by this group, to keep the hyper elite entrenched in their positions and the rest of us chasing our tails.

Posted by: Zedd | Oct 28 2019 21:02 utc | 68

The United States is a National Security State, where the institutions of imperial and state security override any elected government.

Warnings of a deep state filled the pages of The New York Times before and after the Kennedy assassination. People understood that the extraordinary powers given to the CIA and the US intelligence community as a result of the Cold War were incompatible with the ideals of a democratic republic that had exited previously.

State Within a State? - The New York Times, October 6, 1963 (archive)

Is the Central Intelligence Agency a state within a state?

Evidently the elite slowly accepted the fact and stopped complaining. They learned to stop worrying and love the bomb!


I spent several years slowly collecting sources for a Wikipedia article on the US deep state. There was a general article on a state within a state, listing several countries where the phrase (or the equivalent Deep State) was used. The United States was not listed before I added the entry.

After Trump's election someone finally started the article on the US Deep State. I moved my reliable sources over to that article. But in a few months the article degraded into an article about some "Trumpist" conspiracy theory.

Posted by: Petri Krohn | Oct 28 2019 21:09 utc | 69

By pure coincidence, I found out this article today which perfectly exemplifies the degeneration of the "vital center":

American Dream is Sunk

The dynamic, far-left versus far-right will end up ripping the U.S.A. to shreds. And the problem is not what either side gets wrong – it’s what they get right.


Like everything else Washington and Wall Street churn out, it’s all meant to calm the Titanic’s passengers. The ship’s orchestra is still playing soothing classics, as the chilly waters of the North Atlantic sting at the ladies Victorian dress hems. Our Captain has long since drowned down under at his station on Titanic’s bridge, even as the boilers still turn the screws of our once mighty ship. A few of us are looking on from the few lifeboats or life preservers. America, like R.M.S. Titanic, still illuminates the night sky. But for how long? For this writer, it is all just that sad. We sped across the waves of history like Titanic, unsinkable, unshakeable, and beautiful – only to hit the iceberg of reality. America, given the course and speed she took, was doomed from the moment the rudder turning in this direction. And the Russians were not steering or stoking the fires.

Posted by: vk | Oct 28 2019 21:26 utc | 70

Sorry if my link broke the formatting. If anyone can explain what I did wrong I would appreciate it. I have left long links without any trouble previously. I have been warned off using tinyurl for reasons of privacy and security.

@Jackrabbit & Psycohistorian

Thank you both for your insights. I am glad someone posting here is not a sponsered troll. There are days, I am sure, everyone posting here is a paid professional manipulator of thought and discussion.

I should also thank 'b' for allowing these conversations to occurr. I fear this will eventually stop, as it has at so many other so-called alt media websites, and we will all be driven to the narrowing confines of white nationalist tinged drivel, as with Unz Review and a few other sites which permit you to say almost anything but colour you as a racist and a fool by simple association.

Posted by: Zedd | Oct 28 2019 21:29 utc | 71

@seth-r 63 ... good link to the 2014 bill moyers article.

Deep State is a loose term but it always had 2 halves
that are now clearly coming together as one.

1. The bipartisan-pro-business (i.e. neoliberal) wing. They
won their total victory under Reagan, and have simply
been maintaining it.

2. The US national power wing - hawks / MIC / team-usa
world-police. They experienced confusion after the cold
war suddenly ended, but under Bush II they had a final
victory of sorts, upon 9/11. The total unconditional
surrender of the Dem party to the neocon principles made
this wing also clearly bipartisan.

2016 was messy because both wings found their core beliefs
discredited, and simultaneously they had to support an
uninspiring figurehead in Clinton.

Trump, being the reality-show magician he is, not only
benefited from this, but also reunited his allies/enemies
with the electorates who were about to leave them. We again
have strong partisan loyalty in the US. Trump does 95%
exactly what the militarists and the big business guys want,
yet manages to be pretty darn convincing in playing the
victim, since the outrage against him is genuine. He is
also in his personality a grotesquely cartoonish distillation
of exactly these qualities - greed, corruption, bellegligence.

his best and most threatening quality is that it finally
forces some honesty on observers of the system.

Posted by: ptb | Oct 28 2019 21:36 utc | 72

A lot of the people posting comments at may be racists, but why should that be a reason not to post there? Wasn't guilt by association discredited by McCarthyism?

Posted by: lysias | Oct 28 2019 21:41 utc | 73

karlof 1 #66

I posted a tidbit for your consideration at the Biden thread.

Seth_Rich #64

Thank you

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Oct 28 2019 21:41 utc | 74

I'm sure I'm not the only person here who sees the headlines B has linked to and other NYT headlines (and some of the actual articles themselves, if I have the time and patience to read them) and realised that The New York Times itself is part of the Deep State it initially denied and now wholeheartedly supports. Not that this should surprise anyone who is familiar with Operation Mockingbird and The New York Times' part in co-operating with the CIA to plant CIA-origin reports with reporters who were either willing volunteers or unaware innocents or to practise self-censorship to appease the CIA.

Carl Bernstein "The CIA and the Media"

Spartacus Educational "Operation Mockingbird"

Posted by: Jen | Oct 28 2019 21:51 utc | 75

the deep state is basically the one per cent, so called, which has many levers, within 'the state', but also within the private economy, the world of media and culture, the academic world, etc..

Posted by: paul | Oct 28 2019 21:51 utc | 76

There is no democracy anywhere on earth. Elections are not democratic; sortition is.

Here, for instance, is Aristotle on the subject:

"It is accepted as democratic when public offices are allocated by lot; and as oligarchic when they are filled by election." -- Aristotle, Politics

It was Cleisthenes who in 508 BC had the genius insight that it is elections themselves that are the problem, because those who are elected are always the ones most eager to seize a position of power, and they always use it for their own benefit and not for the common good. More than a century later, Plato would agree, stating that the worst that can happen to a society is that its offices are held by those who crave them most.

This deserves repeating: only those with an ambition for power seek election to public office.

The French philosopher Alain (original name: Emile Chartier) famously said that what characterises an honest man is not wanting to rule over others, which implies that it will be the least generous among us who will take advantage.

Elections are thus not at all democratic, and in agreement ---besides Cleisthenes himself, Plato, Aristotle, and Alain--- are also Montesquieu, Rousseau, Voltaire, Thucydides, Herodotus, and many others.

Thus, in this discussion about the Deep State (which was officially birthed in 1947, but had been gestating since the very beginning of the USA), we forget that all democracies for the last 250 years have used the term "democracy" as a smokescreen to hide the fact that they are, in fact, oligarchies, and the Deep State is their muscle.

As George Carlin said so well: "There's an Owners' Club folks, and you and I are not in it. They want more for themselves and less for all the rest of us, and they don't give a f**k about you, at all."

Posted by: Theophrastus | Oct 28 2019 22:09 utc | 77

Albertde #46

Under dictatorial, communist and fascist regimes, the opinion of all residents is tightly controlled and no deviations are tolerated, either publicly or in a family setting (children being encouraged to report on parents). People expressing deviant opinions are silenced by imprisonment or if they are considered dangerous enough, accused of some “crime” and killed (“executed”). The result is that when the disparity between the reality people witness and the reports they see in the controlled media becomes too great, these regimes would weaken since the only tool for control would be visible fear and people would be prone to apathy.

So the USA is in the early or late stage of fascism? ADKC at 31 references the Whitney Webb article here.

The deep state will have arrived on your doorstep and across the globe through the CLOUD Act in the USA and with the collaboration of the Five Eyes.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Oct 28 2019 22:10 utc | 78

I suggest the following will take inquiring minds much deeper into the subject:

THE DEEP STATE: A Brief Bibliographical Sketch

In his book The Secret Team: The CIA and Its Allies in Control of the United States and the World, Col. Fletcher Prouty, who was the briefing officer to the President of the US from 1955-1963, writes about “an inner sanctum of a new religious order.” By the phrase Secret Team he means a group of “security-cleared individuals in and out of government who receive secret intelligence data gathered by the CIA and the National Security Agency (NSA) and who react to those data.” He states: “The power of the Team derives from its vast intra-governmental undercover infrastructure and its direct relationship with great private industries, mutual funds and investment houses, universities, and the news media, including foreign and domestic publishing houses.” He further adds: “All true members of the Team remain in the power centre whether in office with the incumbent administration or out of office with the hard-core set. They simply rotate to and from official jobs and the business world or the pleasant haven of academe.”

I have adopted the view outlined by Joseph Farrell in his Nazi International, The Reich of the Black Sun and The Third Way, by Alfred W. McCoy in his The Politics of Heroin: CIA Complicity in the Global Drug Trade and by William Engdahl in A Century of War, Anglo-American Oil Politics And The New World Order. See also Peter Dale Scott´s writings. Essentially I am referring to a consortium of intelligence agencies, their bankers and the drug cartels who finance themselves off money laundering and resource expropriation.

Post WW2 theft of Axis booty was used to finance intelligence agencies (see Seagrave: Gold Warriors: America’s Secret Recovery of Yamashita’s Gold” and the transfer of control over the Asian heroin trade (see: McCoy: “The Politics of Heroin: CIA Complicity in the Global Drug Trade”) has been used to finance off-budget operations of intelligence agencies worldwide. The western deep state’s object is to capture the resources of eurasia and prevent a geopolitical alignment of Russia and Germany, formulated by MacKinder: The Geographical Pivot of History” and the modern exponents of western hegemony, such as George Friedman and Brzezinski, of course. With regard to Russia, didn’t we seen a version of this movie in 1918?

In pertinent point:

London is now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Gomorrah author Roberto Saviano says 'the British treat it as not their problem'

"The City of London is the money-laundering centre of the world’s drug trade, according to an internationally acclaimed crime expert."

In my view, any attempt to analyse geopolitical machinations that doesn't recognize the everyday efforts of the multiple entities alluded to above will lack depth. I'm not referring to the holdover, identifiable bureaucrats who survive from one political administration to the next. I'm referring to those who administer the funds laundered by the too-big-to-fail-too-big-to jail banks as well as the funds disappearing into the black holes of the defense department: see:

Pentagon Claims That It Has “Lost” Over $18 Trillion, Which Probably Paid Foreign Army Payrolls

Rumsfeld says $2.3 TRILLION Missing from Pentagon


Cynthia Mckinney questions Rumsfeld and Myers about 9/11 War Games [and accounting]



Earlier this year, a Michigan State University economist, working with graduate students and a former government official, found $21 trillion in unauthorized spending in the departments of Defense and Housing and Urban Development for the years 1998-2015.

The work of Mark Skidmore and his team, which included digging into government websites and repeated queries to U.S. agencies that went unanswered, coincided with the Office of Inspector General, at one point, disabling the links to all key documents showing the unsupported spending. (Luckily, the researchers downloaded and stored the documents.)

Now, the Department of Defense has announced it will conduct the first department-wide, independent financial audit in its history (read the Dec. 7 announcement here).

The Defense Department did not say specifically what led to the audit. But the announcement came four days after Skidmore discussed his team’s findings on USAWatchdog, a news outlet run by former CNN and ABC News correspondent Greg Hunter.

“While we can’t know for sure what role our efforts to compile original government documents and share them with the public has played, we believe it may have made a difference,” said Skidmore, the Morris Chair in State and Local Government Finance and Policy at MSU.

Skidmore got involved last spring when he heard Catherine Austin Fitts, former assistant secretary of Housing and Urban Development, refer to a report which indicated the Army had $6.5 trillion in unsupported adjustments, or spending, in fiscal 2015. Given the Army’s $122 billion budget, that meant unsupported adjustments were 54 times spending authorized by Congress. Typically, such adjustments in public budgets are only a small fraction of authorized spending. Skidmore thought Fitts had made a mistake. “Maybe she meant $6.5 billion and not $6.5 trillion,” he said. “So I found the report myself and sure enough it was $6.5 trillion.”

Skidmore and Fitts agreed to work together to investigate the issue further. Over the summer, two MSU graduate students searched government websites, especially the website of the Office of Inspector General, looking for similar documents dating to 1998. They found documents indicating a total $21 trillion in undocumented adjustments over the 1998-2015 period. (The original government documents and a report describing the issue can be found here.)

In a Dec. 8 Forbes column he co-authored with Laurence Kotlikoff, Skidmore said the “gargantuan nature” of the undocumented federal spending “should be a great concern to all taxpayers.”

“Taken together these reports point to a failure to comply with basic constitutional and legislative requirements for spending and disclosure,” the column concludes. “We urge the House and Senate Budget Committee to initiate immediate investigations of unaccounted federal expenditures as well as the source of their payment.”

As they say, follow the money.

Posted by: pogohere | Oct 28 2019 22:19 utc | 79

Insofar as my fellow barflies might accept a bridge from Deep State to MIC as not taking us too far off topic, I was struck by the belligerence of US SecDef (for Raytheon) Mark Esper's tweet to the effect that "we will respond with overwhelming military force against any group that threatens the safety of our forces" controlling the Syrian oil fields. Apparently, when specifically asked, if this included Russia, he apparently said yes, without equivocation or hesitation.

Does this new policy then, to deny Syria of 200,000 bbl / day, entail a commitment to an full out attack on the forces of a nuclear armed country?

Is this intended to be a warning? (The US / Russkie generals have a deconfliction hotline for that.)
Is this representative of not caring sufficiently to think through a position, or an inability to imagine its consequences?
is this the product of a delusion that, barring an effort, surely manifold greater than that during the run up to the Iraq, the US is able to respond to Russia with overwhelming force, quite near Russia's borders, after all.

Is this bluster, or are the exponents of US military violence so accustomed to bullying small and medium countries that they are simply unable to process what even a regional, conventional conflict with Russia might entail? Even taking Saker's point that if Russia limits itself to playing defence, its forces in Syria can eventually be overwhelmed, given what Martyanov refers to as the 900-lb gorilla of Russia's stand off capacity, Russia has escalation dominance. All of America's bases in the ME and all of its carrier groups could be destroyed within hours.

What on earth possesses these characters?

Posted by: Paul Damascene | Oct 28 2019 22:27 utc | 80

@47 wg.. i maintain the reason it is happening now, is the usa empire is in an accelerating state of decline..

@59 karlof1 quote - "But for the past three years, since the 2016 election, the Cold War has been crazily enlivened with the 'Russiagate scandal' of alleged interference in American political affairs by Moscow. It was the Clinton campaign, establishment media and her intelligence agency supporters that launched that canard against Trump." i agree with this viewpoint, alongside the one i just made to william g..

Posted by: james | Oct 28 2019 22:29 utc | 81

@80 paul d... maybe it has to do with mark espers gig as joe boy for rayatheon prior to accepting the usa sec of defense position? maybe he uses the lingo of a tough talking capitalist more readily then a diplomat - something in real short supply in the usa at present... it fits the tough guy john wayne persona the usa likes to project...

Posted by: james | Oct 28 2019 22:31 utc | 82

The British term for the "Deep State", coined I believe by the historian AJP Taylor, is The Establishment.
It includes but goes far beyond the Civil Service and military hierarchy. Haute Finance is central to it,
so are the educational system and the media. Its role is to act as a gyroscope ensuring, through whatever means are necessary, that the course pursued by society is that determined by the ruling class.
That course, neoliberalism, requires the subordination of 'democratic' mechanisms to the imperatives of the market.
The Monthly Review has a very good article this month, of which this is a small sample.

"... Today there is once again a structural crisis of capital, most evident in the
Great Financial Crisis of 2008–10, but actually going much deeper and extending back to the 1970s,
which marked the beginning of the long slowdown of the advanced capitalist economies. Stagnation,
characterized by the overaccumulation of capital, is all the more significant in our time since it
has been accompanied by the greatest inequality in history. The world has also seen the emergence
of a new phase of imperialism, best characterized as late imperialism, in which international
exploitation/expropriation has been intensified in the context of the globalization of production
and the prevalence of global value chains. International conflicts and racism are on the rise.
Both the United States and Europe are experiencing declines in their respective positions within
the international economic hierarchy, symbolized by the rise of China. On top of all this is a
planetary ecological crisis on a scale that has no precedent in history, and which threatens
the very future of humanity, not in some distant period, but already in the present century.

"Neoliberalism, which seeks to subordinate the state to the market while also using the state
apparatus to enforce market relations, is systematically dissolving all bases of community
relations, transforming them into mere commodity relations. This has served to delegitimize
the state, the unintended effect of which has been to encourage the development of radical
right or neofascist movements opposed to liberal/neoliberal political elites along with the
working poor. Xenophobic racism is being directed at immigrants and populations emanating
from the Global South. At the same time, perpetual war and imperialist-based coups have
generated millions of refugees. Overall, the conditions of our time are those of epochal
economic, social, and ecological crises, accompanied by intensified imperialism and war...."

The interesting question is why The Establishment feels so threatened that,
as Gruff points out above, it has torn off its mask and discredited itself over what is
nothing more than a minor spat within the ruling class. Trump is not a threat to the
system in any way. And yet large parts of the CIA and the classes that support the ruling class have gone mad in their determination to rid themselves of him.
It seems to me that this is simply a symptom of an hierarchy collapsing- as they tend
to do- from the accumulated weight of its hubris. It long ago lost any sense of proportion
and moderation-hence the decades of stupid wars pursued without discernible political cost,
and the neglect of the social base, in the slow but steady immiseration of the working
(aka 'Middle') class. This process continues as we speak, notably in the auto-discrediting of the UAW
in the GM strike just (shockingly) called off. The Establishment worked because it was grounded
in broad social acceptance, a contract which included some social mobility, rising living standards
for the majority and all the accoutrements of an ideology of progress. For a variety of reasons that
is all over now and the only real barrier between the capitalist class and the unsatisfied appetites
of the masses is force, the sort of force being employed in Chile, which is, after all, neo-liberalism's
Show House.
All of which is making the Deep State's directors very nervous, and unbalanced. Which is why they
are acting so irrationally that they seem to have convinced themselves that Trump(almost indistinguishable
though he is from themselves) is a threat. A threat that they no longer dare to assassinate, which is what
they would normally do.
Thanks pogo for the link...!!!!

Posted by: bevin | Oct 28 2019 22:31 utc | 83

ptb@72 -

Indeed, but there is another side to my point as well. The New York Times and Washington Post must simply love the fact that Trump and his supporters (of which I can be said to be one on a very limited number of issues) have re-defined "deep state" as a much shallower and easy to root out (in theory) subset of unelected government functionaries who have allegiances to Obama and his political opponents in general. This gives cover to the actual deep state for which the NYT and WaPo (MSNBC, NBC, ABC, CBS, Fox, etc.) are the PR arm, or at least mouthpieces. The over-simplification allows them to treat it as just another Trumpist conspiracy gambit designed to discredit legitimate media outlets, which themselves are all owned - to some degree - by the very interests that constitute the non-governmental elements/persons of the deep state which can and do re-enter government via the revolving door.

You're spot-on with respect to The Donald, but I think one of the intended goals of the NYT etc. finally admitting the reality of the deep state was to discredit the notion in the minds of most "liberals" by playing it off as only a small number of "patriotic public servants" instead of the deeply rooted rot and control mechanism that it really is. It's really quite insidious reverse psychology propaganda they've got going with it, and I was hoping b would have gone into a little more depth, but I suppose that is the purpose of linking the Moyers re-post of Lofgren, and the second article I linked does a decent job of exposing one side of the issue - and Lofgren's dissatisfaction with it - without totally playing NYT's game of "damning by faint praise" the idea that there is actually such a thing.


Posted by: Seth_Rich | Oct 28 2019 22:32 utc | 84

pogohere #79

Great post and many thanks. That explains why the air is thick with absurd red herrings and has been so since the Skidmore/MSU report was made public.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Oct 28 2019 22:34 utc | 85

Re post #80,
Apologies for the solecisms:
I meant a military effort many times greater than that leading up the Iraq war ... and obviously with much greater consequences, given the ability of this adversary to punch back. Hard.

Posted by: Paul Damascene | Oct 28 2019 22:36 utc | 86

In the not so distant past folks used the term 'puppet masters' to describe the unseen hands influencing elections and policies here in the U.S. This term has evolved under Trump's WH to a 'cabal' of 'entrenched interests' or a 'deep state.' Whatever the term of the day may be, people intuitively know a hidden power greater than the electorate is controlling all things in DC.

When reading several articles and watching interviews a couple of weeks ago related to Ukraine, the coup and the current Burisma sunlight, I was struck by how similar their color revolution is paralleling with what we are bearing witness to here in the United States.

Whatever this hidden hand is the U.S. is ground zero for regime change.

And Lefties and Righties and all of those in the middle would be wise to inform themselves of what is heading our way. The sooner the better b/c Party identity won't matter one iota. You're either an American who wants the country to remain governed under the Bill of Rights, the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution OR you're not. Remaining neutral will not be an option.

I'd also add that this regime change is being driven by the fact that those behind the mechanics of nurturing the Liberal World Order (LWO) along are in Trump's crosshairs. Many here write about the death of the American empire but I take issue with the global sense of such a suggestion. What is dying is the Liberal World Order NOT American empire. If folks here write about the death of the American empire also encompasses the body politic of the LWO then I fully agree. But words have meaning. The body politic that birthed the likes of BIS, the Tri-Lateral Commission and the IMF are by those whose family business, generation-after-generation, gave us what is known as the Liberal World Order most of the West has lived under since the early 1900's.

Someone mentioned up thread the Rothschild clan as being a silent partner, which I fully concur, but there are many more I'd add including Soros himself. Digging in and learning the mechanics behind the money laundering scheme at Burisma pretty much tells one all they need to know about how this LWO "deep state" secures the funds to pay off their enablers/useful idiots and to invest the remaining funds into keeping their morbid theater chugging along.

Whatever happens here in the U.S. in the coming years, beware to ALL who live elsewhere. This LWO is parasitic and those who are adherents will move onto another country and start all over again. Havoc is how they make their money. It's a family business.

Posted by: h | Oct 28 2019 22:39 utc | 87

Thanks to all commenters for raising the level of discussion as go off to read the link that Zedd and others provided

All this brings me back to my structural change drum that I continue to beat here. Humanity needs to change the social contract to exclude private finance of any kind. I say this because I believe that killing all the Jews won't work, nor putting in prison Clinton, Obama, Trump, Pelosi, etc. We simply need to focus on pushing forward sovereign public finance and collaboration between civilization states to replace the BIS and other inter-state is the structure (private finance/property and ongoing inheritance), not the individuals at any one time that needs to be changed

Off to read some of all the links provided by great commenters here.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Oct 28 2019 22:51 utc | 88


A lot of the people posting comments at may be racists...

The content at UNZ provokes the response. Some say this is accidental but I doubt this is true. I'm afraid all websites are directly or indirectly controlled by Intelligence, no different from Facebook. Keep that always at the top of your mind and you will possess the key to understanding the nature of the informational matrix in which we live.

Guilt by association is a practiced tradition. In the case of Unz it used to associate important ideas and debates with incoherent racism, thus causing dissonance with those possessing an excessive normalcy bias.

When you are accused of engaging in ad hominem it is often because you have pointed to an important connection an opponent may have. The term works both ways as any thoughtful person needs to acknowledge. I think the term was invented to discourage thinking and encourage confusion about broader issues, the same way pejorative use of the word 'conspiracy' was created to hide uncomfortable facts - but also highlight less relevant details - about those who rule over us and how they accomplish their goals.

As ever things are more complicated so I take no strictly ideological view of highlighting associations. Ad hominem attacks can be used to distract an audience or it can be used to highlight the contradictions of an opponents position, for example, I seriously wonder what the word 'McCarthyite' would mean today if the politician in question had claimed not a communist but a Jewish plot against the USA. I suspect the term would never be used had McCarthy been more specific about who he was targetting. I also suspect if he was sincere about outing genuinely dangerous people there would have been no Soviet style show trials of America's most beloved Menschen.

Posted by: Zedd | Oct 28 2019 22:52 utc | 89

Although there are different formulations for the deep state, I'm not sure my understanding of oligarchy is sufficiently broad that it can stand in as a synonym, as I believe Karlof1 proposes. In its international dimension, psychohistorian's coinage of "Deep World" is appealing.

According to one theory of the Deep State, there are 2 wings in the US. The East-coast globalist financial elites, Jewish and Anglo-Brahmin, and the CIA; and the more southern-based, Christian, military wing. It would appear that this might run parallel to the Trump era split between patriots and globalists if projected internationally, but I'm not sure that split holds outside of the US.

Posted by: Paul Damascene | Oct 28 2019 23:16 utc | 90

The handy handles for the West’s actual rulers are “The 0.1%”, “Neo-aristocracy”, or “The Elite”. Larry Summers’s “Insiders” are the top 1%. Technocrats like Elizabeth Warren are the top 10% which includes the Spooks, Officers and Executives climbing through the revolving doors of the Deep State. The remaining 90% are riffraff. Western governments are purposefully non-functional with remnants of democracy that the Plutocrat Donald Trump used to befuddle incompetent Democrat Insiders and won a Presidency that he never expected. True to form, he’s seized Syria’s Oil which is a war crime. Corporate Democrats to keep the donor’s money coming continue to scapegoat Russia. The current conflict in the West is between nationalist and globalist oligarchs and their paid servants, the 10%. Tulsi Gabbard is the only presidential candidate mentioning the unmentionable - End the forever wars and restore government by and for the people.

Posted by: VietnamVet | Oct 28 2019 23:30 utc | 91

I am not as erudite or eloquent as Zedd or RS but I can
attempt to give my take on some of the excellent insights
they have. I see the deep state as those most enthralled(imps) or
those who are the direct paid agents or minions in the mind control matrix
of a demonic empire of "reality creators". The matrix they have created is not
true reality but a viciously malign, malignantly evil, satanically deceptive simulation
that is totally divorced from objective truth and therefore totally in
thrall to satan and divorced from god. In other words, the imps are the
fanatical believers in the cult of Lucifer-reality while the paid agents
know the simulation is false but are conscienceless psychopaths, what I term
the soulless machines or material automatons of the Luciferian Imperium. So
the deep state in essence is a violent, deranged cult of true believers in a
false reality and therefore psychotic and extremely dangerous. It is not recognized
as a cult because it is mainstream and counts among it followers the majority of
the population. Look at the rabidly deranged beliefs they fanatically hold: the
skripal hoax, the russia collusion hoax, the ukraine hoax, and all the other hoaxes
not mentioned like the syria chemical and barrel bomb hoax, the mh17 hoax, the isis hoax.
There are so many hoaxes one can't even keep track of them any longer. Any countervailing
narrative is denounced as the blashemy of conspiracy theory which is a hallmark of a cult.

Posted by: evilempire | Oct 28 2019 23:49 utc | 92

I haven't yet read all the comments here (must be a Deep State stretcher at work)
but I would like to bring a partial comment initiated by one of b's extra links on
the weekend thread that I don't think got comments there - the Atlantic piece about
the Nixon/Kissinger attempts to elect someone other than Allende, and then to do an
'Allende must go' on said elected President after he had been democratically elected.

I have only read this long article partway but it strikes me the contrast is stark.
There, the US government, or its executive at least, was the Deep State in the sense
of being the power hidden behind its own democratic coming to be, performing illegal
acts of subversion against another sovereign state. Was this what Nixon was elected
to do?

It seems a horrible thing for an elected President to be engaged in, and yet do we
have something even more horrible when the State itself is conspiring with media
help to overturn its own elected head? Where do we go from here? It's as if the
United States is now bound and determined that this country experience what it has
inflicted on so many other countries north and south - a color revolution, coup d'etat
of major proportions.

Well, they've been practising long and hard, but always the people fight back; and the
people seem to be good at having the last say. And why not? Leaders come and go, even
corporations come and go. The people are always here.

Posted by: juliania | Oct 29 2019 0:26 utc | 93

Some definitions of "Deep State" given above are essentially a collection of power centers (defense department, financial industry, etc.) or a large network(s) of personal connections ("oligarchs", the "one percent", etc.). Others give great weight to state bureaucracy.

These conceptions of the Deep State are amorphous and imply collections that too unwieldy to operate effectively.

IMO the Deep State is a SMALL collection of powerful, smart people that are highly respected and virtually untouchable. They work across party lines but behind closed doors. People like McCain (while he was alive), Hillary, Bush Sr. (while he was alive), Brennan, Mueller.

Jackrabbit !!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Oct 29 2019 0:36 utc | 94

There is no reason that I can see why the Athenian political system would not work with a less restricted citizen body.

Posted by: lysias | Oct 28 2019 19:39 utc | 45

Notice that the Yellow Vests in France emphasized direct democracy. The subject of Classical Athens regarding its 'amazing adventures' with democracy is a big one, and in my many discussions over the years on this subject, it is not unusual to be faced with the knee jerk condemnation and thus dismissal - clinching argument I win! - of Athenian democracy as irrelevant because well there were all those slaves and women who couldn't vote. Sigh.

But I would transmute your comment a bit to say that we could both learn from them, and, experiment and perhaps make some improvements. Some aspects of modern technology combined with the good old paper ballot anchor could be quite the team on behalf of direct democracy.

One aspect of their approach has been mentioned: drawing of lots to pick people for certain positions. One of the effects would be say to basically shut down contemporary lawyerly machinations re jury selection; it also dignifies the average person. Hey, anyone with any common sense can take on this task. There's lots more. Their mass juries were pretty well immune from being bought or intimidated. So, roughly speaking, I endorse your comment.

Posted by: evilempire | Oct 28 2019 23:49 utc | 92

I'm largely in sympathy with the thrust of your comments, apart from having some reservations about the comment - 'erudite and eloquent' re some RS character. Many of these very powerful people are really really sick and dangerous.

When liars and con artists successfully fool someone, the victim is taken 'out of touch with reality'; can be conned into acting on the basis of a false reality.

The layman's definition of insanity: being so out of touch with reality, and so invested in hallucination say, that one acts on the basis of that hallucination: the non-existent tiger scares the hell out of you, etc.

The average decent person can be conned into doing crazy monstrous things. It can become like you indicate group madness.

Truth is the great disinfectant.

Tulsi Gabbard is in effect saying: we have repeatedly been conned into killing and being killed. That's crazy and evil. Let's get real and get good.

She's reminiscent of the truth telling child in the Hans Christian Anderson fairy tale: that drooling wacko empress is butt naked!

Posted by: Robert Snefjella | Oct 29 2019 0:46 utc | 95

Abdullah Qardash (a.k.a. Hajji Abdullah al-Afari)- the new isis leader... goodie, goodie! more funding for the usa to follow thru on its endless war on terror, or as the joke may be...

Posted by: james | Oct 29 2019 0:50 utc | 96

"Conversations With History - Peter Dale Scott"

Peter defined deep state and so forth.

lookit youtube

Posted by: Walter | Oct 29 2019 0:52 utc | 97

I said 'partial' because I haven't yet finished reading the Hersch
piece. Back to that I go.

Posted by: juliania | Oct 29 2019 0:58 utc | 98

I got a lot out of the link from Zedd in comment #68 about the early Venice methods of social control "for the common good".

It reads like it was very effective and had aspects that are probably still in use today by the cabal that is at the top of the Western social order that use the BIS, IMF and World Bank as their payolla mechanism when needed.

It details how secrecy was a state virtue and how it used the "professional" or government folks, the "mercantile" or business folks and the "amateur" or public to feed information to the controlling top of the organization effectively....just like now, only contextually evolved.

I keep calling what we have today the God of Mammon religion and that is probably not too far off in description of the belief system at the core of today's version of the controlling order. The issue that is so stark today is that "for the common good" is no longer the center point of the religion. From what I read and understand, the system that China has evolved comes closest to what makes sense if humanity is to continue and prosper as a viably structured society.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Oct 29 2019 1:07 utc | 99

Juliana @ 93 --
Perceptive post. You seem to be getting a lot from your reading. Bonne lecture.

Posted by: Paul Damascene | Oct 29 2019 1:11 utc | 100

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