The “Deep State” Isn’t Deep
are portions of an exchange I had on Facebook with one friend of mine from high
school and Metuchen, N.J., where we both were raised. It helped me clarify the
character of our political, social, and economic order. My contributions are in
red, and his are in green. It starts on the subject of “civilization” and its
Oh to the contrary.
“Civilization” is inseparable from war-making, from racism, and other forms of
madness, like religious fanaticism. “Civilized” people are deadlier than those
called “primitive”people. No primitive people developed weapons of mass
destruction. Only “civilized” people do that! Only the “civilized” have
ideologies that justify the annihilation of the “others.”
Larger populations create
weapons that kill larger groups. Smaller populations don’t need to because
clubs, machetes and small arms will do the job adequately. So it may be just a
matter of scale rather than civility.
Only in what we call
“civilization “ is making war a “job.” For primitives war was/is horrific and
therefore they ritualized it.
Again, a matter of scale.
Something to do with “scale.”
More to do with the dehumanizing effects of what we label “civilization,” as
revealed most clearly in, say, the Armenian holocaust or the holocaust
Europeans created in the New World.
True. But the dehumanizing
effects of civilization has to do with the exponential rise in the population
of nations necessitating specialization. Everything is larger scale
necessitating social changes in society. We need large scale corporate farms,
cooperative cheese companies, clothing stores, government to tell us what we
want and who to hate and yes, special forces to defend our country (and invade
Well, perhaps. But the dehumanizing
aspects of civilization has to do with the repressive and oppressive
governments that are needed to maintain such a inhuman way of life, or what you
call”specialization.” Specialization is, for me, a euphemism for dehumanization
and it can be found on small scales as well as large,scales. We don’t “need”
large scale corporate farms, we have chosen them, just as we have chosen to
create what Ike called the military-industrial complex. We don’t need
“corporate capitalism,” but have chosen it. Civilization is a choice which can
be walked away from, and people do it all the time.
Nice in theory but corporate capitalism is so
darned efficient, well managed and easy to sell. I guess we should have learned
from our experience with the Robber Barons of the Gilded Age but we didn’t.
True history doesn’t mean anything anymore so we are bound to relive it.
Catastrophes and all.
Corporate capitalism is efficient, especially for the "robber
barons." And while I get your argument, it isn't easy to sell, which is
why those oligarchs have created the national security state, engage in endless
wars against fake enemies, combined with a humongous bureaucracy that pervades
our lives, including militarized "police forces" who kill when they
want, as well as the mass incarceration of huge numbers of people, especially
blacks and Hispanics. In fact, corporate capitalism wouldn't exist without the
oppressive government we like to think of as "democratic." I still
can't believe how many people think our government is "democratic."
But as advertisers like to say, you can sell shit if its packaged properly. And
of course all the patriotic bullshit we embrace serves as that package. USA!
The point being that there is
no need for the concept of “the deep state” to explain what is going on the US
these days and for some time past. What is called “the deep state” is actually
not deep at all; it is there for all to see if only we were willing to look at
it for what it is.
And it is also perhaps correct to
say that our “economic arrangements,” that is, “corporate capitalism,” would collapse
without our “political arrangements,” that is, the humongously centralized and
pervasive “national security state.” This state, although sold as necessary for
fending off foreign enemies, is actually as much geared to fending off domestic
“enemies,” those who threaten our corporate capitalism and its controlling
oligarchy. The oligarchy, in order to maintain its power, will do whatever is
necessary, win or lose whatever elections it is deemed necessary to win or
lose, and engage in war as it is deemed necessary to do so in order to fortify
the people’s patriotism with the blood sacrifices of its young.
It is, to say the least, an
interesting state of affairs.