Donald Trump

Revenge of the Deep State

The unseen government within the government has so much data on Americans that it can reward or punish at its own discretion.

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Revenge of the Deep State
Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call/Newscom

Last week, The Wall Street Journal revealed that members of the intelligence community — part of the deep state, the unseen government within the government that does not change with elections — now have acquired so much data on everyone in America that they can selectively reveal it to reward their friends and harm their foes. Their principal foe today is the president of the United States.

Liberty is rarely lost overnight. The wall of tyranny often begins with benign building blocks of safety — each one lying on top of a predecessor — eventually collectively constituting an impediment to the exercise of free choices by free people, often not even recognized until it is too late.

Here is the back story.

In the pre-Revolutionary era, British courts in London secretly issued general warrants to British government agents in America. The warrants were not based on any probable cause of crime or individual articulable suspicion; they did not name the person or thing to be seized or identify the place to be searched. They authorized agents to search where they wished and seize what they found.

The use of general warrants was so offensive to our Colonial ancestors that it whipped up more serious opposition to British rule and support for the revolutionaries than the "no taxation without representation" argument did. And when it came time for Americans to write the Constitution, they prohibited general warrants in the Fourth Amendment, the whole purpose of which was to guarantee the right to be left alone by forcing the government to focus on bad guys and prohibit it from engaging in fishing expeditions. But the fishing expeditions would come.

In 1978, Congress passed the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), which was intended to rein in the government spying on Americans that had been unleashed by the Nixon administration. FISA established a secret court and permitted it to issue warrants authorizing spying on agents of foreign governments when physically present in the United States.

People born in foreign countries who are here for benevolent or benign or even evil purposes have the same constitutional protections as those of us born here. That's because the critical parts of the Constitution that insulate human freedom from the government's reach protect "persons," not just citizens. But FISA ignored that.

And FISA was easy for the government to justify. It was a pullback from Richard Nixon's lawlessness. It required the feds to seek a warrant from federal judges. The targets were not Americans. Never mind, the argument went, that FISA has no requirement of showing any probable cause of crime or even articulable suspicion on the part of the foreign target; this will keep us safe. Besides, the government insisted, it can't be used against Americans.

That argument was bought by presidents, members of Congress and nearly all federal courts that examined it. We don't know whether the authors of this scheme really wanted federal spies to be able to spy on anyone at will, but that is where we are today. Through secret courts whose judges cannot keep records of their own decisions and secret permissions by select committees of Congress whose members cannot tell their constituents or other members of Congress what they have learned in secret, FISA has morphed so as to authorize spying down a slippery slope of targets, from foreign agents to all foreigners to anyone who communicates with foreigners to anyone capable of communicating with them.

The surveillance state regime today permits America's 60,000 military and civilian domestic spies to access in real time all the landline and mobile telephone calls and all the desktop and mobile device keystrokes and all the digital data created and used by anyone in the United States. The targets today are not just ordinary Americans; they are justices on the Supreme Court, military brass in the Pentagon, agents in the FBI, local police in cities and towns, and the man in the Oval Office.

The British system that arguably impelled our secession in 1776 is now here on steroids.

Enter the outsider as president. Donald Trump has condemned the spying and leaking, as he is a victim of it. While he was president-elect, the spies told him they knew of his alleged misbehaviors — vehemently denied — in a Moscow hotel room. Last week, his White House staff was shaken by what the spies did with what they learned from a former Trump aide.

Trump's former national security adviser, retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, himself a former military spy, spoke to the Russian ambassador to the United States in December via telephone in Trump Tower. It was a benign conversation. He knew it was being monitored, as he is a former monitor of such communications. But he mistakenly thought that those who were monitoring him were patriots as he is. They were not.

They violated federal law by revealing in part what Flynn had said, and they did so in a manner to embarrass and infuriate Trump.

Why would they do this? Perhaps because they feared Flynn's being in the White House, since he knows the power and depth of the deep state. Perhaps to send a message to Trump because he once compared American spies to Nazis. Perhaps because they believe that their judgment of the foreign dangers America faces is superior to the president's. Perhaps because they hate and fear the outsider in the White House.

The chickens have come home to roost. In our misguided efforts to keep the country safe, we have neglected to keep it free. We have enabled a deep state to become powerful enough to control a powerful president. We have placed so much data and so much power in the hands of unelected, unaccountable, opaque spies that they can use it as they see fit — even to the point of committing federal felonies. Now some have boasted that they can manipulate and thus control the president of the United States by selectively revealing and concealing what they know about anyone, including the president himself.

This is a perilous state of affairs, brought about by the maniacal passion for surveillance spawned under George W. Bush and perfected under Barack Obama — all with utter indifference to the widespread constitutional violations and permanent destruction of personal liberties.

This is not the government the Framers gave us. But it is one far more dangerous to human freedom than the one from which they seceded in 1776.

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94 responses to “Revenge of the Deep State

  1. Everyone has something, whether professional, personal, or criminal, they could be blackmailed or manipulated with and those with access to this information have incredible power over us and the only thing that protected us in the past from this was the practical inability to gather and disseminate this information.

    Forget the Russians and the Chinese, the surveillance state is the most pernicious threat to liberty we’ve seen in this nation (in the world at large really) since, well, ever.

    1. You can only be blackmailed if you have something to hide.
      During my interviews for a security clearance, I talked to the agent about some of the questions (have you done drugs, etc). He said that they did not care if you answered yes or no, only if they would find out you lied. If you lied, you were a blackmail candidate. If you told the truth, you could not be blackmailed about it because you were ok with it being known.

        1. what is the text for rolling your eyes? (sarcastically as opposes to orgasmically or seizure-havingly). whatever that is, lets just agree that text is here.
          >During my interviews for a security clearance
          Its funny how the people making these contemptuous defenses of totalitarianism tend to be those who directly profit from it. But Im sure that you are beyond the conflicts of interest thatbimpact us mere mortals. After all, you are a King’s Man. You have been Annointed. Now that you have saved up your cracker jack boxes and finally got your super secret decoder ring, you are entitled to handle the Big Truths that us plebes dont have the moral, intelllectual & testicular fortitude to cope with. After all, there is something fishy about us: we dont want Patriots like yourself digging through our dirty laundry and thus, must have Something to Hide which makes us one of the Bad Guys.

      1. I had a clearance in the past and what you’re saying is correct to a point but there are limits, particularly for ongoing behavior.

        1. you dont even have to be blackmailed. You can lose your job, kids, and so much other stuff for wrong think. Milo guy is an example. He wasn’t blackmailed. He just thought differently and lost a whole lot.

          Blackmailing isn’t even the big issue. The big issue is public opinion/reputation assassination.

      2. Look, somebody wrote gullible on the ceiling!

        I’d go beyond “they did not care” to “they are happy to get answers that implicate you.” First, if you admit to whatever improprieties they’re asking about, you’re demonstrating compliance. Second, you are giving THEM blackmail material, if they don’t have it already (which was pretty much the point of the article). Most blackmail isn’t about someone threatening to tell the government something about you so that you’ll lose your job if you don’t do x; the government could eliminate that threat in many cases just by ending policies resulting in your firing for certain “misconduct”–remember when being gay could cost you your government job because it could get you blackmailed? Rather, there’s a vulnerability that the information could be revealed to your spouse/children/parents/next employer/voters when you decide to run for office.

        It’s true that you can only be blackmailed if you have something to hide, but that’s also the worst excuse ever for letting the government into every corner of your life. The problem this article describes is that the presumption has reversed itself in the form of blanket surveillance by bureaucrats. You do have a right to privacy, regardless of whether or not you have anything to hide. If you disagree, we’ll be over in ten minutes to help you take the bathroom door off its hinges.

      3. Given that the government can change what “something to hide” means with the flick of a pen, this is useless.

      4. Same here. I told the agent something I had tried in Denver. He asked me if that could be used against me. I said, “I just told you didn’t I”. He just nodded and everything went smooth after that. They want to know if you can be blackmailed and if you are still doing the behavior in question.

      5. Wow! Things have changed. I don’t remember being interviewed, but almost everyone I knew does! And, I got a Top Secret clearance.

      6. That’s true I guess. But, who hasn’t looked at some
        website or other they would not want their mom to know
        about? And, many people have tried illegal drugs, so
        it’s not just blackmail you need to worry about. If they
        can target only those they have problems with by selectively
        releasing this kind of information, it is a problem.

        I know of a former student of mine, smart and a great person.
        When she was being interviewed for a police dept. crime lab
        job and taking a polygraph, she told the truth about smoking
        some pot a few months earlier and was fired from the job she
        was in and did not get the one she interviewed for. Meanwhile,
        the person who worked next to her said, “Oh, I just lied. The
        polygraph did not catch it”. So, much for telling the truth and
        they only care about blackmail. Yes, I know this was for a police
        department but I can’t believe the intelligence agencies can turn
        a blind eye to “crimes” even if it is something minor.

    2. Catch 22 much? If you tell the truth you’re screwed; if you lie and are found out you’re probably doubly screwed.

      Sounds like lying may be worth the risk. Should probably run a matrix on that.

  2. “”Show me the man, and I’ll show you the crime.””

    – Lavrentiy Beria, head of Joseph Stalin’s secret police

    1. Had to Wikipedia this guy-what a sick asshole. At least he got his in the end.

      1. All those NKVD heads were like that… Nikolai Yezhov as well, for example. And they all ended in similar ways….

      2. I’m guessing that these same types of people are the ones who infest the NSA and the rest of the Deep State that the Judge was writing about here.

        1. Thugs always arise to the opportunity to pursue their full potential, whether they were Nazi thugs, communist thugs, or deep state thugs. They apparently get off on having power over others, and as such are anathema to any free society.

          1. Dicks are dicks. This is why the Marine Corps is so dysfunctional. All the people who thrive on abuse of power stick around because there is no accountability.

      3. Like Stalin, he was the product of a highly efficient system that weeded out anyone who wasn’t a brutal psychopath.

        Learning about Beria’s downfall, the secret speech and de-Stalinization gave me an abiding respect for Kruschev. Turning that system around as quickly as he did was an amazing achievement.

    2. One of Ayn Rand’s villains talking to Hank Reardon had
      something similar to say.

  3. This has been inevitable since the creation of the ‘Department of Homeland Security’. Once the government starts speaking in terms of ‘the homeland’, you’re doomed.
    Actually, though, it’s been inevitable since the notion of ‘state secrets’ or ‘official secrets’ became acceptable.
    After all, if you’ve done nothing wrong, you have nothing to hide.

    1. I’ve always been amazed by how quickly ‘homeland’ was used – and far more so by how little pushback there was when it was used. It was what tipped me over the point where I no longer have faith in the American people to reclaim anything. Where ‘We have met the enemy and he is us’ had finally morphed from a cartoon satire to a pathetic reality.

      1. “Homeland” V/S “the far reaches of the Empire”, is what strikes me about the whole “homeland” thing… “Our nation” isn’t sufficient; we have to specifically differentiate between “the Homeland” v/s the vassal states of the Empire. We have been an Empire for some time now… And now, we have become the Evil Empire! With a manifestly Evil Emperor! All Hail!

        1. Trumpty Dumpty, He’s quite off-the-wall,
          Trumpty Dumpty won’t stay in His toilet stall
          He just goes ahead and takes His shits,
          Totally regardless of whereever He sits
          Whenever He simply, no way, can sleep,
          He Twits us His thoughts, they’re all SOOO deep!
          He simply must, He MUST, Twit us His bird,
          No matter the words, however absurd!
          He sits and snorts His coke with a spoon,
          Then He brazenly shoots us His moon!
          They say He’ll be impeached by June,
          Man, oh man, June cannot come too soon!
          So He sits and jiggles His balls,
          Then He Twitters upon the walls
          “Some come here to sit and think,
          Some come here to shit and stink
          But I come here to scratch my balls,
          And read the writings on the walls
          Here I sit, My cheeks a-flexin’
          Giving birth to another Texan!
          He who writes these lines of wit,
          Wraps His Trump in little balls,
          He who reads these lines of wit,
          Eats those loser’s balls of shit!”

          1. This place is called reason.com. Not 5 year old crapjokes.com Please take you ‘wisdom’ to CNN or MSNBC…it well matches their development level

    2. With regard to “homeland,” I couldn’t believe they were so shallow at the time. They were practically calling themselves the Stasi. Of course, I never supported that administration (I stopped supporting any administration soon after being old enough to vote, and Reagan was the last mainstream candidate for whom I voted.)

      I did tell my wife, on 9/11, that we had just lost more freedom than ever in the history of the United States. I would be so happy to have been wrong.

  4. Three felonies a day. It’s not just the intelligence services that can get you, any agency at any time can find some plausible excuse to nail you at their discretion. And there you’ll be on the local news, on the front page of your local paper, being perp-walked into federal custody and all your friends and neighbors will be saying “I always knew there was something a little funny about that guy, I’m glad they finally caught him.”

    1. As when Solgenitsin was arrested in WWII, for a letter in which he dared to not admire Stalin. When seen being marched from his tank command the comments were “There he is, there goes the rat!”

    2. This is why i don’t judge people who are felons or anything. I honestly could careless after i learned how broken the system is.

  5. Yes. More of this please.

  6. So how about an executive order eliminating the whole FISA mess?

    1. Yes, maybe Trump can pardon Edward Snowden while he’s at it.

      1. It will take an army if willing martyrs at high levels, if that is even enough. I’m pretty sure Trump is not one of those.

        I will remind everyone that Ron Paul has been most certainly right, all along.

  7. Mass surveillance and data collection at its core exists as absolutist state-sanctioned violence against citizens.

    To deny that inestimable power exists under a supreme cloak accumulating all-encompassing properties that form the realities of a populace is to deny your own destiny within such a system.

    The final monument to the journey of man will not likely be sky-reaching silvery edifices home to bright and satisfied creatures but a chisel’s trail parting quantum particles on a charred stone sign weary with time.

  8. all with utter indifference to the widespread constitutional violations and permanent destruction of personal liberties

    Sounds like you’re describing the American people.

  9. This is not a paid endorsement of Accurint, the searchable public records and identity/location service provided to government employees on behalf of the taxpayer.

    This is not that in the slightest.

  10. Uppity Praetorians?
    Not to worry. The God-Emperor will slap the done easily.
    Winning!

  11. And yet, the American people scream for a wall, dociley put up with the TSA, dutifully file their IRS paperwork each year, etc. etc.

    They have not yet realized how hot the pot of water that they are sitting in has become.

    Excellent article from AN, as always!

    1. Rivet. My bath is getting a tad warm, me thinks.

    2. And yet, the American people scream for a wall, dociley put up with the TSA

      And having border security and airline security is equivalent to people spying on citizens… how?

      1. It suggests a general attitude of fear, and a willingness to let the government “protect” Particularly in the case of air travel safety measures, it’s a clear willingness to be greatly inconvenienced or limited in action in the name of safety.

        I’m not entirely convinced by this narrative by the way, I’m just taking a stab at the reasoning.

        1. Yes, a willingness to yield privacy and liberty in exchange for safety, and in doing so, to lose it all.

  12. the critical parts of the Constitution that insulate human freedom from the government’s reach protect “persons,” not just citizens

    I thought that was something that only I had noticed. Glad to see that someone as learned in the law as AN reads the written text the same way. Thanks for the confirmation!

    1. There’s a case before the Supreme Court right now where a teenager standing in Mexico was shot and killed by American border agents for no good reason. The conservatives on the court are arguing the constitution doesn’t protect this kid from American state power because he standing in Mexico and wasn’t an American citizen. It’s strange because the tortious conduct took place mostly on American soil (the gun was fired from America), involved an American agent but the victim was harmed in Mexico. The conservatives are worried about giving victims of drone strikes access to damage claims in American courts but it seems like they could carve out space to give victims of tortious conduct from agents of the American govt redress by relying on the fact that the tort was committed on American soil. I guess drones are operated from American soil. It’ll be interesting to see how this case turns out.

      1. That dilemma seems to indicate a problem with the drone strikes, doesn’t it? Maybe there shouldn’t be a carve-out, since the conduct is essentially the same, and those conducting the strikes would need to justify their actions or suffer consequences, just as this border patrol guy should.

      2. 250 years into this experiment and we’re just now getting around to deciding this question?

      3. The kids was said to be throwing rocks at the border patrol agent. If that is true then self-defense is a real thing. Never bring a rock to a gun fight.

        If it is not true then shooting people on the other side of national borders tends to start wars and other problems.

        1. Shooting a kid is self-defence for said kids throwing rocks?
          OK, con-tardo, back to the Federalist.

          1. Yes, this ignores the “disparity of force” doctrine, unless those are mighty deadly rocks, being launched at high speed by something other than human bodies.

      4. The conservatives on the court are arguing the constitution doesn’t protect this kid from American state power because he standing in Mexico and wasn’t an American citizen

        That’s wrong. The argument is about whether the family can sue in a specific court, not whether he was protected by the Constitution.

        It’s strange because the tortious conduct took place mostly on American soil (the gun was fired from America), involved an American agent but the victim was harmed in Mexico

        That’s misleading. First, the circumstances have never been established in court (see above). Second, the teenager seems to have violated the US border, then run back to the Mexican side. Whether border police can use deadly force in such circumstances is a tricky question, and involves diplomacy and international agreements as much as legal questions. And that’s also why there simply may be no court where these issues can be handled, and Congress and the president might have to act if it so chooses.

    2. …the critical parts of the Constitution that insulate human freedom from the government’s reach protect “persons,”

      An interpretation thick as it is infinitely broad.

      1. The protections of the Constitution are in fact written, rather broadly, aren’t they? It’s the authorizations that are limited. “Islands of authority in a sea of liberty”, as it were.

        1. True. But protecting the sovereignty of the United States is generally considered a power of the US federal government, and it is that power that “limits the rights” of non-citizens more than that of citizens.

          That is, if the Bill of Rights says “the ___ of persons is protected” and the rest of the Constitution says “the government has the power to violate ___ for some persons”, then the power wins out over the Bill of Rights.

          1. Not sure about that as a point of law. If the amendment was ratified after the power in question, doesn’t that mean the amendment takes priority? Dunno, just askin’.

  13. “The targets today are not just ordinary Americans; they are justices on the Supreme Court, military brass in the Pentagon, agents in the FBI, local police in cities and towns, and the man in the Oval Office.”

    With slight reservation and this isn’t’ necessarily a firm position but I’ll throw it out there, I think maybe we should spy on anyone who assumes a position of authority in government. I want those fuckers living in fear and I think an argument could be made that they give up certain of their privacy interests by assuming state power.

    1. I have no problem with those in government being “spied on”; the problem is who is doing the spying. If you’re talking about the American people knowing what people in power are up to, I’m 100% fine with that. If you’re talking about one part of the government spying on another part of the government in secret, I have a huge problem with that, because it essentially creates an unaccountable shadow government.

      1. ^This^

        Is pretty much what I was trying to say below.

      2. Bill Moyers a sometimes PBS commenter actually encouraged Hillary to create a shadow government. I think several democratic and neverTrumper burocrates took his idea to heart

    2. I think maybe we should spy on anyone who assumes a position of authority in government.

      The problem is that the people doing the spying – the Deep State – aren’t doing it in order to protect the freedom and rights of the people they allegedly serve. They’re doing it for the same reason than all bureaucrats do anything: to guard their turf, build their little fiefdom, and punish anyone they consider they consider to be an enemy. Their conduct over the past few weeks prove that they’re a bunch of feckless wannabe tyrants.

      1. You can’t be more truthful. Each agency has its own little army.

  14. Revenge of the Deep State

    A SugarFree joint…

  15. Deep State? Nothing knew. Whose name is on the FBI building?

    1. New. Then again, maybe “knew” fits here…

  16. Enter the outsider as president. Donald Trump has condemned the spying and leaking, as he is a victim of it. While he was president-elect, the spies told him they knew of his alleged misbehaviors ? vehemently denied ? in a Moscow hotel room. Last week, his White House staff was shaken by what the spies did with what they learned from a former Trump aide.

    Trump’s former national security adviser, retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, himself a former military spy, spoke to the Russian ambassador to the United States in December via telephone in Trump Tower. It was a benign conversation. He knew it was being monitored, as he is a former monitor of such communications. But he mistakenly thought that those who were monitoring him were patriots as he is. They were not.

    Pissgate. Really? The ‘scandal’ that was so ludicrously stupid we’re still laughing at it. And the Flynn accusation that is, even now, falling apart.

    This is like the attacks on Milo and Pewdiepie–stupid shit that is, even now, falling apart.

    If the ‘Deep State’ was so all powerful, why didn’t they stop Trump? They clearly hate him.

    Here’s the thing–the unelected bureaucracy, IS a danger–it pushes us inexorably leftward because it only prospers when government grows.

    We need to bring back the spoils system. The spoils system didn’t allow a ‘deep state’ to form. The Civil Service served at the pleasure of the party in power–and not as a clandestine arm of the Democrats.

    1. Government, as with any organization, has a foremost priority to serve and perpetuate itself. As such it will grow as much as it is allowed. until it becomes so powerful that he can do nothing about it. I believe Al Capp illustrated this principle quite well.

    2. We need to bring back the spoils system. The spoils system didn’t allow a ‘deep state’ to form. The Civil Service served at the pleasure of the party in power–and not as a clandestine arm of the Democrats.

      Bingo. By cementing the jobs, it only assures that you get one step closer to Stalinism where the employees (and blood lines) of the prior regime are exterminated.

    3. the items you mention piss gate etc are all BS but they are on the internet and leftys everywhere are still referring to them as gospel truth and the denials of the liar in chief only prove them to be true

  17. My “Say it ain’t so, Joe!” moment with Jeffrey Tucker was when he quoted and sided with Kristol in saying that Trump is a greater threat to liberty than the “deep state”. I don’t know how you can say that with any degree of seriousness or honesty. If Trump spent the remainder of his term shooting one person in the head at random each day he’d be less of a threat than the massive unelected bureaucracy that runs the country.

  18. All you Trump tools need to show me where Trump has said he’s going to do anything to roll back the national security apparatus. The man has called Edward Snowden a ‘traitor’. He hasn’t uttered one word about rolling back FISA or PRISM or XKeyScore, of any of the other NSA “anti-terrorism” tools. On the contrary, he’s a bigger booster of the “war on terror” than Obama ever was, and probably intends to expand these programs as fast and extensively as possible.

    1. True, but then why does the deep state have its undies in a bunch ever since Trump started winning GOP primaries?

  19. The British system that arguably impelled our secession in 1776 is now here on steroids.

    This. But it doesn’t matter. People want to be ruled. And the American government has already demonstrated what happens when citizens no longer consent to being governed by the Federal Gov’t. History has shown that the Federal response is the same as the British Monarch’s response: invasion and murder/destruction.

  20. Centralized oligarchy replaced a decentralized Republic in 1861. Since 1865 we have been reeducated (see national education) to think that liberty, its acquisition and maintenance, must come from that centralized authority.

    Nothing could be further from the truth.

    This is not liberty. It is permission.

    1. Yes. Lincoln was quite clear about the Civil War not being about slavery, but that’s what has been sold ever since. The Civil War Amendments converted the these united states into The United State. Slavery was officially ended elsewhere by mostly peaceful means, but at that time, republic was dead. All that was necessary was to codify the details, and Congress happily did so, until it got to the point where it tired of the responsibility and yielded it to the Chief Executive, who in tern yielded it to the deep state.

      1. (in turn)

  21. People born in foreign countries who are here for benevolent or benign or even evil purposes have the same constitutional protections as those of us born here. That’s because the critical parts of the Constitution that insulate human freedom from the government’s reach protect “persons,” not just citizens. But FISA ignored that.

    Neat trick: you pivoted from “critical parts of the Constitution apply” to “the entire Constitution applies equally” and hoped nobody would notice.

  22. The government using its vast electronic surveillance powers to blackmail judges and politicians was predicted in State of Terror, a novel about the national security surveillance state, published in 2013. https://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00HE605GC/reasonfoundation-20/

  23. I learned only recently that one of my father’s heroes was Leon Trotsky. At first, learning this shocked me, because my father was a union man, and a life member of the NRA. When I researched Trotsky, I learned that he hated the “deep state”, which in Soviet Russsia was the entrenched bureaucracy. Trotsky became such a pain in Stalin’s neck that he was forced to leave the country and eventually end up in Mexico. It was there that Trotsky lost his life, assassinated on the order of Joseph Stalin.

    We have a deep state in the good old USA today, and it needs to be flushed out and done away with. Donald Trump can do it, but those who elected him can’t go spineless. They must call and put pressure on their elected officials like they never have before. The future of this great republic is at stake.

    1. Trump can’t do it, and wouldn’t if he could. Perhaps you haven’t been listening to his spew.

  24. they are their own little Gods……whatever they put on the people will come back on them 10 fold – if not in this life, when their lives are over…

  25. My simple solution to this problem is:

    The government is of the people and by the people. So whatever information the government has must be public record.

    That should be in the Constitution. If it was almost all the surveillance state would be gone because everyone would shit a fucking brick.

    It also passes basic logic and natural law. If the government is of the people and by the people. The people have a right to know everything it has and does.

  26. I am disappointment that an article with such strong focus on emotion and so little information is in Reason.com. I agree with the author’s view and concerns. I want to reason with people who hold a different view. To help me be effective and enlist others in voting for liberty, the article needed to provide information, not just repeat the emotions I already have.

    From the article Revenge of the Deep State:

    ? “Last week, The Wall Street Journal revealed…” Why no link to the WSJ article? Is ‘revealed’ accurate given how many times in past decades journalists have caught members of the intelligence community leaking data they had on US citizens to help friends or hurt enemies? I suspect it is worse now, but the article doesn’t quantify how.

    ? “Their principal foe today is the president of the United States.” How is this new? Trump is hardly the first president to be disliked by significant members of the intelligence community, and it is hard for someone in the US gov with less power than the president to tick off as many significant people.

    ? “FISA has morphed so as to authorize spying …” Yes, I believe it! Unfortunately, to convince others I need links to information supporting this claim.

    ? “regime”, “wall of tyranny”, “on steroids”, “chickens have come home to roost”, “perilous state of affairs”, “maniacal passion”, “spawned”, “utter indifference”, etc.

    I don’t need articles that do nothing but pander to emotions. Please put REASON back on reason.com.

  27. Defeating a Deep State will require DEEP CUTS in the nearly $4 trillion annual US Federal Budget.

    Just start slashing – VERY DEEPLY – and something will have to give.

    You can only hide something this big and nefarious when you are blowing over $10 billion A DAY.

    Sorry, no clean way to do it, and no doubt some good things will suffer too, but there is no pain free way to get there.

  28. Published in parallel: the “enemy of the deep state” plans to increase cannabis persecution. Either he’s throwing the very large dog a bone, or he was never the potential martyr. I go for the latter, given his long-standing comments on Snowden and Manning.

  29. Registered at reason.com just to comment on this article..and hopefully many more.

    Thank God found a website that is actually thoughtful and not just a Soros front for liberals dogma.

    Facebook, Google, Apple, and the lot make $ billions spying, collecting Meta data, and selling data. Under Obama’s terms there has been revolving door between Federal spy agencies and these private spy agencies.
    Their goals are the same. Knowledge is power, Power is $. Both political party establishments have sold their souls to these spy agencies. Talking Democrat or Republican is meaningless.
    As a non-establishment outsider, President Trump has commented on danger these spy agencies are to democracy. And spy agencies are now trying to destroy President Trump with leaks and fake news.
    People….it does not matter if you are liberal or conservative, Democrat or Republican…if President Trump is our ONLY hope of stopping our slide towards an Orwellian nightmare. If President Trump looses to spy agencies and deep government…we are all screwed.

  30. The instant Hillary lost the election, Obama issued an executive order opening up all of the NSA’s data to the entire intelligence community. Just in time for Obama loyalists in those other agencies to start playing out their little coup attempt.

    Do a google search for “obama executive order nsa access” and read all about it.

  31. The greatest threat to individual liberty … is … our own government!

  32. I’m surprised at the lack of comments as this subject seems right up the libertarian alley. There was an article written a couple years ago on the Bill Moyer website about the ‘hidden in plain view’ nature of the deep state. I wholly recommend it. One of the takeaways was how inconsequential partisan politics — the Red tribe vs. Blue tribe stuff — and the daily bread and circuses proffered by the culture wars are in the macro sense. They’re mostly viewed, especially the latter, as useful distractions to keep the prols passionately disengaged from the actors of real global power. I tend to agree with this.

    In the Information Age if one looks at the sheer volume and callow nature of most of the daily internet wars ? ‘fake news’ is really most of what one consumes on the internet these days minus recipes, educational information, directions and porn ? and who profits from disseminating it, one sort of realizes the genius of having balkanized tribes of anonymous keyboardists arguing over whose comments can accrue more ‘likes’.

    The only real corrective I can think of to the top level actors of the deep state is that they’re going to die, too. No one is immortal.

    1. I suspect there aren’t that many comments because Reason seems to have become less about libertarian ideas these days and more about attacking Trump. Since the Deep State opposes Trump this behavior by the Deep State is suddenly not so odious.

  33. I looked at the check for $8628 , I didnt believe that…my… father in law was like actualie taking home money in there spare time on there computar. . there sisters roommate haz done this for under 17 months and just cleard the morgage on there apartment and got a gorgeous Chevrolet Corvette . go to websit========= http://www.net.pro70.com

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