An excerpt from the above linked-to interview of Mike Lofgren by Nafeez Ahmed follows:
Insight: The Deep State is the overarching structure that overrides democratic process to determine policies, meaning that the two-party system offers little meaningful change of course from administration to administration.
So what is this structure that somehow makes decisions outside of the democratic process? What does the Deep State look like from inside?
“What I had described when I’d talked to you about the run up to the war in Iraq and so forth sounds like what Eisenhower was saying about the military industrial complex,” said Lofgren. “Nevertheless, I concluded further after the 2008 crash that there was more to it.”
For Lofgren, the Deep State is not just the national security apparatus. It also includes Wall Street, think tanks, and other interlocking agents of influence…
“And it struck me as the same sort of fear-mongering that went on in the financial sector, as we saw with Saddam’s alleged weapons of mass destruction: to stampede Congress into giving them carte blanche. So it’s not like how the Glenn Greenwalds of the world seem to define it – as the intelligence agencies. It’s a much bigger thing. It’s a public private partnership, among the principal government agencies mainly in national security and finance, with Wall Street, the defense contractors, Silicon Valley is very important because it’s the biggest source of new wealth — as well as the technology that the NSA would be totally lost without. NSA and CIA provide seed-funding for a lot of what Silicon Valley has done for decades through front companies and little venture capital shops.”
So would it be fair to say that the Deep State is kind of like a system, it’s not just a secret dimension to the state?
“It’s a series of coalitions of people and it’s not a conspiracy…”
My online responses to the above linked-to article follow:
“The way forward is obvious: civil society has the opportunity to develop new strategies, cross-partisan coalitions and exploration spaces to disrupt the existing two-party structure, and either compel it to transform for the better, or be replaced by something better.” Being victims won’t automatically make abused citizens into caring activists. That’s an individual choice. And it doesn’t look good. People really have been mentally and spiritually ruined, owing to their own personal failing (not caring) and owing to the way society is designed. Work culture is barbaric. You work more for less and if you have children, How much energy will you have at the end of the day to inform yourself, via ‘active’ learning, rather than the passive learning that consists in turning a tv set on yourself and being blasted with corporatocracy propaganda?
And there are other issues.
“These are people who in their own minds see themselves as patriotic custodians of the national interest.” I doubt it. They — which doesn’t mean absolutely everyone there — are gangsters and they know it, would be my view.
Activity isn’t the same as result, Mike notes. For sure. In this neoliberal era and the painful austerity that it brings, people are hurting and squawking. But noise isn’t fightback. Throwing a fist at a police officer or a chair through a Starbucks isn’t fightback. It’s shouting out “Ouch!” That’s all.
The fightback, which, I’m sorry to report, comes from 1% of the 99%, comes from those who have been paying attention (because they care) and have a better understanding of what’s going on. Caring is knowing. Without knowing the details, Mike’s daughter has her head down (but up) and into some political article, while there are thousands of idiot youngsters out there looking around for Pokemon monsters, heads down and buried in the screens of their overpriced (and utterly vulnerable) smartphones, oblivious of the fact that they are probably a part of a big experiment at predictive behavior, as Oliver Stone and James Corbett and others have pointed out. Which wouldn’t be so bad if the people here had good intentions.
But the neoliberal neoconservatives who own and run the world are looking forward to the pushback (fightback and squawking) that will come when the change that heroes like Trump promise turns out to be a change in pace — acceleration — of the current abuse known as neoliberal capitalism. The kids, who are also not so young and do pay taxes, no doubt couldn’t care less that they pay taxes and then ‘their’ government turns around and subsidizes the advanced industry (dominated by the military intelligence industrial complex) that is behind nastiness like Pokemon Go, which will possibly one day lead to their being harshly dealt with should they try to step out of their imposed roles as consumers and zombies.
As for Glen Greenwald et al, I lost my respect for that group of celeb progressive investigative journalists when I learned about just how nefarious their boss, who they defend, is. Pierre Omidyar is a nazi loving (enabling, at least) BILLIONAIRE who helped install the nazis in Ukraine. The Pando Daily writers look into it. And Glen’s attitude toward FBI whistleblower Sibel Edmonds is very revealing. It’s a shame, because I really admired those people — Glen, Jeremy — and learned so much from them. And I would have a hard time believing that most of what they did was useless. But it’s been one thing after another. The Intercept’s Murtaza Hussain penned a pro USAID, pro White Helmets piece that disgusted me. (And then Democracy Now did a show promoting the White Helmets. I couldn’t believe it.) I remember when it was announced that these journos would be working for Pierre, a billionaire. I was concerned, but knew nothing. Not now. As for the White Helmets operation, there’s any number of sources that can inform interested people about them: Vanessa Beeley, Patrick Henningsen, Eva Bartlett, the Off Guardian website for example.