The “Deep State” Isn’t Deep
Here 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 character.
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 others).
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! US! 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.