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March 22, 2018

Liberals, NeverTrumpers Freak Out About Americans' Belief in a "Deep State"

Morning Joe was in a tizzy about this a couple of days ago.

The poll shows "bipartisan" concern over a Deep State.

Public Troubled by 'Deep State'

Monday, March 19, 2018

Bi-partisan concern that government is tracking U.S. citizens

West Long Branch, NJ -- A majority of the American public believe that the U.S. government engages in widespread monitoring of its own citizens and worry that the U.S. government could be invading their own privacy. The Monmouth University Poll also finds a large bipartisan majority who feel that national policy is being manipulated or directed by a "Deep State" of unelected government officials.

Americans of color on the center and left and NRA members on the right are among those most worried about the reach of government prying into average citizens' lives.

...

Fully 8-in-10 believe that the U.S. government currently monitors or spies on the activities of American citizens, including a majority (53%) who say this activity is widespread and another 29% who say such monitoring happens but is not widespread. Just 14% say this monitoring does not happen at all. There are no substantial partisan differences in these results.

...


Turning to the Washington political infrastructure as a whole, 6-in-10 Americans (60%) feel that unelected or appointed government officials have too much influence in determining federal policy. Just 26% say the right balance of power exists between elected and unelected officials in determining policy. Democrats (59%), Republicans (59%) and independents (62%) agree that appointed officials hold too much sway in the federal government.

"We usually expect opinions on the operation of government to shift depending on which party is in charge. But there's an ominous feeling by Democrats and Republicans alike that a 'Deep State' of unelected operatives are pulling the levers of power," said Murray.

The reaction from the left and the Establishment right is one of near horror: They seem to view this idea that unelected bureaucrats have a lot of power in making policy -- much more than their charter actually grants them -- as a conspiracy theory almost the equal of Trutherism.

Is it? Hasn't this been, oh what's the right word, a standard Republican claim made for about 40 years or so?

For those conservative-identifying people who sniff that a belief in a determined, liberal/progressive cadre which rigs the game to favor the liberal/progressive cause, let me ask a few questions.

I won't ask these questions of liberal/progressives, who are unapologetic about their support for a maximally powerful hyperstate. I ask them only of conservative-leaning people now aghast at the "conspiracy theory" of a Deep State, precisely because those people have generally agreed that unelected bureaucrats have far too much (unconstitutional) power over policy for quite some time.

From around 1948 to just last year, as a matter of fact.

So here then, some questions:

1. Do you believe that the EPA is heavily staffed by activist liberals who wish to interpret or even invent laws to favor the radical environmentalist side of things?

I know most conservative-identifying people have expressed support for this proposition, or at least pretended to believe it in their daily job as spokesmen for Conservatism, Inc.

If you still believe in this proposition -- why do you claim it's conspiratorial nuttiness to claim that the upper echelons of the DOJ, FBI, IC and even military high command, ponds stocked with Obamaite fish for 8 years straight, could similarly have a strong political interest and might push their agenda, without constitutional authority to do so, through their bureaucratic and managerial decisions?

2. Do you believe that the Office of Civil Rights in the Justice Department is a pond stocked with very liberal fish, who push their politics, again without constitutional authority to do so, through their bureaucratic and managerial decisions?

If you believe the OCR has been stocked with Obamaites, why is it insane to think that the higher ranks of the DOJ might have been similarly stocked?

Even among career bureaucrats, promotions in the top positions not the result of blind testing or a strict seniority system, are they? Nope.

3. Do you believe the Department of Education has been stocked with liberal/progressive bureaucrats who push for things like sex ed and bizarre quasi-judicial rape courts?

This is another case where I've gotten the distinct impression that the conservative Establishment believes this, or at least pretends to in public utterances.

If the DOEd can be captured, why not the DOJ? Do you believe that "prosecutors and LEOs are almost always conservative?" Well, if you believe that, you're flat-out wrong, and kinda embarrassingly so.

4. In 2003, unknown members of the CIA chose to probe the question of whether Saddam Hussein sought -- sought, not bought -- uranium in Niger. The person they decided to send to answer this question was... Clinton loyalist Joseph Wilson, who was, coincidentally enough, the husband of archliberal, "Jews start all the wars" conspiracy theorist Valerie Plame (or Valerie Plame-Wilson).

I know for a fact that many Establishment types thought this was a cook-the-books scheme by liberals in the CIA, because this was a major controversy in 2004, with most Establishment Republicans agreeing that Joe Wilson was a biased investigator and the fact that he had been hand-picked for this venture showed a biased intent from the beginning.

Why is the Intelligence Community now beyond question by polite society? Is it that only Bushies know when the IC is ratf***ing them? Are Trump supporters too ill-educated and unsophisticated to similarly posit the IC might be ratf***ing their guy?

5. In 2007, aghast that Bush had gone to war against Iraq, even though their own intelligence justified the war, the Intelligence Community decided to cook the books in order to deny Bush any justification for a military strike on Iran by issuing a National Intelligence Estimate claiming that there wasn't any evidence Iran was seeking a nuclear weapon.

This of course represented a complete reversal of their previous analyses, and the IC itself reversed itself a couple of years later by deciding that the threat of an Iranian nuke was no so dire and so close to fruition that nothing short of secret bilateral talks with Iran were now necessary.

In just four years, the IC went from claiming Iran was hotly pursuing a nuke, to claiming (just for Bush) that they weren't, to reassessing once Obama was safely ensconced in the Oval Office and deciding, "Hey, maybe we were right the first time; maybe they were developing a bomb all along, and now we need to negotiate with them and make Gigantic Concessions to delay their bomb by just a few years."

Do the Establishment types who view the idea of an IC Deep State as lunatic thinking deny they themselves believed the IC Deep State was deliberately rigging the intelligence to stay Bush's hand in 2007?

If so, that would be news to me: they seemed to believe that in 2007, 2008.

Why the change of heart now?

Can I suggest an alternate reading things which does not require people to believe things in 2016 and then suddenly claim that a belief in such things in 2017 is prima facia proof of insanity?

Can I suggest that maybe the Establishment knows full well that there is a Deep State, and that there are, here and there, liberal Republican members of that Deep State, and they trust those liberal Republican members?

And can I suggest further they also know there is a much bigger liberal/progressive Deep State, but they are currently politically aligned with that bigger Deep State on the one issue they care about: Impeaching Trump?

And so the question isn't really "Is there a Deep State?" -- spoiler alert, there is -- but "Should we go along with the Deep State because hey, they're on our side this time?"

Matter of fact, one underemployed Twitter activist admitted as much:



Well fellas, they may be on your side, but I don't see them as being on mine. So I oppose them, the same way I've always opposed the liberal/progressive Deep State.

The same way you used to oppose the liberal/progressive Deep State until you found them useful for your short-term political agenda.

But #MuhPrinciples are eternal and unchanging, huh?

I don't expect any answers, because these are the sorts of questions that people who are intellectually dishonest won't answer, because they know an answer would damage their stated position.


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posted by Ace of Spades at 04:22 PM

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