Posted by Roger Mallett Posted on 15 April 2024

How Awesome is the Deep State, Really?

In a recent video op-ed, the New York Times profiled three government employees who supposedly represent “the Deep State” as being “Really Kind of Awesome:” a planetary mission manager, a water administrator, and labor law enforcer.

The video, its narrator suggested, was a response to Donald Trump’s constant ranting against the Deep State, and his claim that “Either the Deep State destroys America, or we destroy the Deep State.”

This raises the question: Which vision of the Deep State is closer to the reality of what the term actually means, and what role does the Deep State actually play in our lives?

In this article, I will review the meaning of the term “Deep State” and then present three counterexamples to the NYT’s happy band of career bureaucrats. My examples are extracted from the ranks of the security state’s biodefense cadre that ran the Covid pandemic response.

What Does “Deep State” Actually Mean?

To understand the meaning of the term “Deep State,” it is helpful to consult the writings of a civil-servant-turned-author named Michael Lofgren who, according to an NPR report, popularized the term “Deep State” in his 2014 “Anatomy of the Deep State.”

As Lofgren explains in a video accompanying that essay, the Deep State can be understood as “a hybrid of corporate America and the national security state,” which constitutes a “government within the government” that “operates according to no Constitutional rules or any constraint by the governed.”

He continues: “the military-industrial complex, Wall Street – they’re both about money, sucking as much money out of the country as they can, and control: corporate control and political control.” He lists the following Deep State constituents: “Pentagon, Homeland Security, State Department, Treasury and Wall Street” with the addition of Silicon Valley, without which, he says, “the NSA and CIA could not do what they do.”

To put it in my own words: The Deep State is a self-serving (as opposed to public-serving) conglomerate of government and corporate interests, operating through “public-private partnerships” in the national security/intelligence space where budgets are untraceable and legal constraints unenforced to nonexistent. 

And I would add: The goal of the Deep State is to pass laws and budgets, create “non-profit” and “non-governmental” structures, and engage in activities (wars, anti-terrorism, and nowadays ”pandemic preparedness” and “anti-disinformation”) that transfer as much money and power as possible from civil society into its own control. 

Does this sound like it applies to the NYT’s Star Trek-loving, salsa-dancing, child-protecting humanitarians? Or does it perfectly describe the following military and national security leaders who usurped control from public health and civil leadership to run the Covid pandemic response according to a biodefense lockdown-until-vaccine playbook that is about as far from actual public health as you can get?

Three Deep State Covid Responders

As you read the following bios, keep in mind these key aspects of the Deep State:

  • It is a conglomerate of government and corporate interests, so its members are always involved in what are blandly identified in the press and in public documents as “public-private partnerships.” In fact, these are the shady mechanisms by which, as Longfren notes, money, corporate power, and political control are jointly amassed. Deep State operatives always hold positions in both national security arms of the government and related industries, often on a rotating basis.
  • It operates in the national security/intelligence space: The government side of the Deep State comprises the military/national security agencies, not public health or other civilian-oriented departments.
  • Deep State budgets are untraceable and are spent under cover of loose to non-existent legal constraints, especially during states of emergency, which are designed to suspend legal protections for civil society.

Read More – How Awesome is the Deep State, Really?


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