menu

Anatomy of the Deep State

Anatomy of the Deep State March 19, 2014

A really fine essay on the profoundly diseased state of our government and Ruling Class.

It is as if Hadrian’s Wall was still fully manned and the fortifications along the border with Germania were never stronger, even as the city of Rome disintegrates from within and the life-sustaining aqueducts leading down from the hills begin to crumble. The governing classes of the Deep State may continue to deceive themselves with their dreams of Zeus-like omnipotence, but others do not. A 2013 Pew Poll that interviewed 38,000 people around the world found that in 23 of 39 countries surveyed, a plurality of respondents said they believed China already had or would in the future replace the United States as the world’s top economic power.

The Deep State is the big story of our time. It is the red thread that runs through the war on terrorism, the financialization and deindustrialization of the American economy, the rise of a plutocratic social structure and political dysfunction. Washington is the headquarters of the Deep State, and its time in the sun as a rival to Rome, Constantinople or London may be term-limited by its overweening sense of self-importance and its habit, as Winwood Reade said of Rome, to “live upon its principal till ruin stared it in the face.” “Living upon its principal,” in this case, means that the Deep State has been extracting value from the American people in vampire-like fashion.

We are faced with two disagreeable implications. First, that the Deep State is so heavily entrenched, so well protected by surveillance, firepower, money and its ability to co-opt resistance that it is almost impervious to change. Second, that just as in so many previous empires, the Deep State is populated with those whose instinctive reaction to the failure of their policies is to double down on those very policies in the future. Iraq was a failure briefly camouflaged by the wholly propagandistic success of the so-called surge; this legerdemain allowed for the surge in Afghanistan, which equally came to naught. Undeterred by that failure, the functionaries of the Deep State plunged into Libya; the smoking rubble of the Benghazi consulate, rather than discouraging further misadventure, seemed merely to incite the itch to bomb Syria. Will the Deep State ride on the back of the American people from failure to failure until the country itself, despite its huge reserves of human and material capital, is slowly exhausted? The dusty road of empire is strewn with the bones of former great powers that exhausted themselves in like manner.

But, there are signs of resistance to the Deep State and its demands. In the aftermath of the Snowden revelations, the House narrowly failed to pass an amendment that would have defunded the NSA’s warrantless collection of data from US persons. Shortly thereafter, the president, advocating yet another military intervention in the Middle East, this time in Syria, met with such overwhelming congressional skepticism that he changed the subject by grasping at a diplomatic lifeline thrown to him by Vladimir Putin.

Has the visible, constitutional state, the one envisaged by Madison and the other Founders, finally begun to reassert itself against the claims and usurpations of the Deep State? To some extent, perhaps.

Read the whole thing and stop being played by these people.  The peculiar combination of impotence in preserving the common good and insane draconian power in the service of Surveillance State is not a bug for these guys.  It’s a feature.  Power has become an end in itself for our Ruling Class and the preservation of the common good is less and less a goal and more and more an obstacle.

The article traces well the way the Deep State ramifies through the system like a cancer.  But the origin of this evil is, as with all evils, found in the heart.  We are a people who are rejecting God.  Therefore, we are inevitably become a master/slave society.

"Late to the game, but while I agree with him that the end doesn’t justify ..."

Building Bridges of Trust vs. Winning
"I also think netflix is more evil than good, the things they have and support ..."

A reader struggles with scruples about ..."
"I am pretty sure remote cooperation is evil unless with proportionate reasons..."

A reader struggles with scruples about ..."
"Just one nit - the Dickey Amendment (the bit of law that supposedly "forbids" the ..."

Heresy of the Day: Antinomianism

Browse Our Archives