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writing for godot

The Parallel State

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Written by Carl Peterson   
Friday, 19 January 2018 07:10

 

Does anyone reading these words believe that our president actually picked his own cabinet?  Admittedly, it is possible that the president was allowed to pick Ben Carson and Rick Perry because he actually had some personal experience with those two, and those who controlled the cabinet selection process might have thought it nice to throw the president a bone and allow him to think that he actually filled a couple of cabinet positions.  But so far the parallel state has not allowed the president to have his wall...

And how could this president have chosen any of the rest of the cabinet?  He has no basis of knowledge to allow him to make anything other than arbitrary selections, and the selection of this cabinet was anything but arbitrary.

Could he have possibly in any substantive way have chosen Ryan Zinke as Secretary of the Interior?  It is likely that the president has no idea what the Secretary of the Interior is supposed to do.  But the plutocratic interests that selected the Interior Secretary know.  Ryan Zinke has come out of the box with a plan, a plan that his television appearances so far have suggested he hasn't the intellect to formulate on his own.  And as revealed by Mr. Zinke so far, the plan is to open up more federal lands to mining interests.  The plan apparently is to begin with the Bear Ears National Monument in southern Utah and move later to shrink national parks that are sitting on something of value to mining or other economic interests.  This is in keeping with, for example, the Koch brothers' belief that it is morally wrong for the federal government to interfere with private exploitation of natural resources.  See Interior Secretary Zinke hikes to Native American ruin with Koch-backed political operative while snubbing tribal leaders. Westwise, May 9, 2017. https://medium.com/westwise/interior-secretary-zinke-hikes-to-native-american-ruin-with-koch-backed-political-operative-while-9194a3112c16.  Note there a photo of Zinke hiking in Bear Ears National Monument with his master's emissary Matt Anderson. 

Does this president have any characteristic or quality that would have allowed him to make the free, personal decision to, for example, nominate Scott Pruitt to head the EPA?  The president probably doesn't know where Oklahoma is let alone who Scott Pruitt is.  No, Scott Pruitt was selected by someone else.  It probably was not Steve Bannon either, since he does not seem to be particularly animated by the libertarian ideas that would seek to destroy environmental protections.  But it is well-known that the Koch brothers deeply resent government interference with "private" activities that harm the environment.  No, Pruitt was probably personally selected by the Koch brothers, and, more specifically, by Charles Koch.  See Who’s Backing Scott Pruitt to Head the EPA? The Koch Brothers. in Got Science? February 2017, Union of Concerned Scientists, https://www.ucsusa.org/publications/got-science/2017/got-science-feb-2017.

Does anyone reading these words believe that any member of the cabinet receives guidance from the president?  No, this is play time for the plutocrats and their lackeys.  The president, who seems to know less than the average sixth grader about the country where he was born and has lived for 71 years, is readily distracted but also has a sort of genius for distracting others with his antics.  (The plutocracy hadn't anticipated the value to them of these characteristics of the president when they first opposed the then-candidate in the Republican primaries.)  The mainstream media promote the president's distractions endlessly, for profit, while they ignore stories that must be widely understood if we are to turn back the plutocratic assault on democracy and undo the burgeoning anti-democratic, proto-fascist parallel state.

It would be good if instead of or in addition to the array of Sunday morning political news programs like Meet the Press, each of the major television news outlets had an hour-long Sunday morning program called Meet the Plutocracy, or Plutocracy this Week, or Plutocracy! Face the Nation or something like that.  There is plenty of story there to fill such programs if the corporate media devoted more of their resources to uncover and report it.

It's not that the mainstream media doesn't report on the plutocracy at all; they do cover it sporadically, and sometimes file very interesting stories on the subject, but so too in the lead-up to the Iraq War did the New York Times have many stories in its middle pages that raised powerful doubts about the claim that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction.  But the stories that bolstered the claim of Iraqi WMD were on the front page.  If ever you thought that the New York Times had learned from its failure to properly report the Bush administration's rationale for the invasion of Iraq, and would one day try to make amends to the American people for that failure, the answer to date is "No!"  The New York Times remains incorrigible. See While Trump Blusters, Koch Brothers Get Their Way, https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/while-trump-blusters-koch-brothers-get-their-way_us_59d646f0e4b0666ad0c3cb41

Who else in the Trump administration has ties to the Koch faction of the plutocracy?  In addition to Pruitt and Zinke, there is Mike Pence, Vice-president of the United States, Marc Short, White House legislative director; Mick Mulvaney, Office of Management and Budget Director, and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director; Donald McGahn, White House counsel; Kellyanne Conway, White House advisor; Samantha Dravis, chairwoman of the EPA's deregulation team; Rex Tillerson, Secretary of State; Mike Pompeo, CIA director; Jeff Sessions, Attorney General; Wilbur Ross, Department of Commerce Secretary; Nikki Haley, United Nations Ambassador; Tom Price, now departed Health and Human Services Secretary; Betsy DeVos, Department of Education head; Elaine Chao, Department of Transportation Secretary,; Rick Dearborn, Deputy Chief of Staff; Stephen Ford, Special Assistant to the President and Director of Speechwriting for the Vice President. This is only a partial listing.  See 70% of White House Senior Level Officials Have Koch Ties, https://checksandbalancesproject.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/White-House-70-of-Senior-Level-Officials-Have-Koch-Ties-6.18.17-.pdf; See Trump’s Cabinet choices reflect deep Koch influence, High Country News, December 15, 2016.  http://www.hcn.org/articles/donald-trumps-cabinet-choices-reflect-koch-influence

So, what we have here is not a failure to communicate, but an Executive branch that is largely controlled by unelected, secretive, super-wealthy private citizens hostile to any government activity they perceive to interfere with their personal or political interests.  Not exactly a civics book description of democracy.  Additionally, plutocrats have established essentially complete control of one of the two major parties and that party now has a majority in both houses of Congress.  Additionally, partly through their long and patient support of the Federalist Society, and partly through their control of the Republican party, the plutocracy has established a majority of Supreme Court justices who will reliably support the interests of the plutocracy against the interests of the people.  See The Conservative Pipeline to the Supreme Court, https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017/04/17/the-conservative-pipeline-to-the-supreme-court.

Further, the Koch brothers are working through the Federalist Society to bring the entire Judicial branch within the power of the parallel state.   See Inside How the Federalist Society & Koch Brothers Are Pushing for Trump to Reshape Federal Judiciary,  https://www.democracynow.org/2017/3/21/inside_how_the_federalist_society_koch

Koch brother activity over the past several decades shows that they have planned for the long-term, not just to influence government activity to favor themselves and other plutocrats, but to make permanent changes to the American form of government.  Part of the strategy has been to massively fund gerrymandering and voter suppression efforts to game the results of American elections to produce elected officials who are not of the people or for the people, but are instead debased servants of the plutocracy.  This part of the plan is already in its middle to late stages of implementation.  See: Trump Team, ALEC, Koch Industries Debate Gerrymandering the U.S. Senate in Denver, https://www.commondreams.org/views/2017/07/18/trump-team-alec-koch-industries-debate-gerrymandering-us-senate-denver; See: How the GOP Made Your Vote Useless, https://www.thedailybeast.com/how-gop-gerrymandering-made-your-democratic-vote-useless; See Voting Rights and the Koch Brothers, http://kochcash.org/koch-facts/voting-rights/; See: Who’s funding voter suppression? http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2016/2/12/whos-funding-voter-suppression.html; See: The Academy Awards of Voter Suppression, https://www.americanprogressaction.org/issues/courts/reports/2015/02/20/107013/the-academy-awards-of-voter-suppression/

Unless a critical mass of the American people begin to understand the parallel state, the inevitable result over time will be de jure changes to the American form of government to overtly install the plutocracy.  Because the plutocratic ideology (libertarianism blended with Ayn Rand's romantic division of society into producers and looters) takes no account of the dangers of unchecked power, including economic power, its logical result will be a state where even the plutocracy has become subservient to the totalitarian power.  For insight into plutocratic view of the way America ought to be, see the Libertarian Party platform of 2016 and the massively absurd 1000 page tome, Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand.

The plutocracy has been sneaking around for decades, but now their parallel state hides in plain sight alongside our American government, its tentacles and stingers attached and embedded, so that it is parallel to, but also already expropriating what does not belong to them: the people's government.  The latest tax "reform" is only the most recent instance of the parallel state drawing life from what it seeks to destroy.

If you fear the so-called Deep State now, wait till it is controlled by the plutocracy.  (In Pompeo they already have their man in the CIA.)  They won't have a democratic ideology to contend with.  The libertarian/plutocratic ideology claims that the highest value is liberty for everyone, but in the real world it will allow only the plutocrats to be free and unchecked in their exercise of power.  You and I would have at best only a nominal, meaningless liberty as we drag our chains about in a poisoned country.  If we let it stay where it is the parasitic parallel state will become more and more visible to everyone over time, and the America we have known will become less and less visible, till it is just a dead husk, kicked aside by the plutocracy.

 

 

 

 

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