“There is something unique you have to agree that now the impeachment inquiry is underway, sparked by a complaint from someone within the intelligence community, it feeds the president’s concern, an often-used term about a deep state being there to take him out?”
Margaret Brennan, moderator for a panel discussion at the Hayden Center in Northern Virginia, October 30, 2019
“Thank God for the Deep State… Everyone here has seen this progression of diplomats and intelligence officers and White House people trooping up to Capitol Hill right now and saying these are people who are doing their duty, who are responding to a higher call.”
John McLaughlin, former Acting Director of the Central Intelligence Agency responding to Brennan.
Every tin pot general in every third world country who has ever staged a coup has offered the same rationale. It was his “duty” to step in and seize power. He was acting on behalf of the people and in the “best interests” of the nation. Never mind the law. Never mind the constitution. Never mind that the president being deposed had been duly elected by the people of the nation in question. Somehow he had seen fit to abrogate to himself the authority and the power to make decisions on behalf of all.
We used to laugh about this kind of thing. We used to speak with derision about banana republics where military leaders and members of the elite simply seized power whenever they so chose.
We should not laugh anymore. The very same phenomenon is on full display in Washington, D.C. right now.
Acknowledging The “Deep State”
Mr. McLaughlin‘s comments were made in the midst of a panel discussion at the Hayden Center on the campus of George Mason University in Northern Virginia. Look at the individuals on the stage. Besides Mr. McLaughlin, someone for whom I used to have tremendous respect, the other three individuals in this panel were:
Former CIA Director John Brennan, whom many believe is the main architect of the original coup attempt (Mueller/Russia Investigation) against President Trump.
Michael Morell, former Acting Director of the CIA and the man accused of lying about what happened in Benghazi to protect President Obama and then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, who was fired from his post for having lied under oath, leaked information to the press and having participated in efforts to smear President Trump with false accusations of collusion with Moscow during the 2016 election.
Here on full display is the Deep State. It is no longer hiding. It is no longer denying its existence. It is showing itself in broad daylight, flexing its muscles and crowing about its ability to bring down a sitting president.
Unelected Fourth Branch Of Government
The power of this unelected fourth branch of government is almost unimaginable. It is an existential threat to our entire democracy. For many years now it has substituted its will and its judgment for that of the American people. Now it seeks to fundamentally remake the nature of our government, overturn the results of a free and fair election and subvert the will of the American people.
It is perilously close to doing so and only concerted efforts to take control of this vast edifice will prevent that catastrophe.
The sad truth is this. Donald Trump has been in office for almost 3 years. Yet, even today he has failed to fully take control of this giant hostile federal bureaucracy. Many of the most important positions in our government remain filled with individuals who are actively working to subvert the President’s agenda.
Part of the reason is that the President either has not yet nominated anyone to fill a key position or his nominees have not yet been confirmed. The President appoints some 1200 individuals within the federal bureaucracy. Of that number there are 739 positions, which are considered key and require Senate approval. As of today, only 494 of those positions have been filled.
Even this measure though does not begin to capture the real scope of the problem. Donald Trump came to Washington as a political outsider. He has been a disruptive and transformative President. Finding individuals who are aligned with him ideologically and supportive of his agenda has been a massive task, and the learning curve has been steep.
As a consequence, the federal government remains riddled with individuals actively working against the President, and this “rot” extends from top – Senior Executive Service (SES) – to bottom – the GS staff who depend on promotions from the increasingly politicized SES staff.
The bulk of the current career Senior Executive Service – composed of roughly 7,000 individuals across the executive branch – were appointed to the SES during the past seven years during the Obama administration, data from OPM’s internal Enterprise Human Resources Integration tool shows.https://www.govexec.com/management/2016/12/nearly-70-percent-ses-will-experience-their-first-presidential-transition-senior-executives-trump/134024/
Whistleblower Changes At ODNI
The ODNI Inspector General who specifically changed the rules regarding whistleblower complaints so that accusations against the President concerning dealings with Ukraine could move forward is Michael Atkinson. Before being appointed to this position, Atkinson was in the Department of Justice’s National Security Division under Barack Obama. That office was intimately involved in the manufacture of the manifestly false “Spygate” allegations against the President in 2016.
The original Ukraine “whistleblower” himself, Eric Ciaramella, is a registered Democrat holdover from the Obama White House, who previously worked with former Vice President Joe Biden and former CIA Director John Brennan. Ciaramella was removed from the NSC in mid-2017 when it was discovered he was making unauthorized disclosures to the press. “He was accused of working against Trump and leaking against Trump,” said a former NSC official, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss intelligence matters.
LTC Alex Vindman, the latest “whistleblower” to come forward was verbally reprimanded as far back as 2012 for unprofessional behavior, extremely partisan pro-Democratic Party comments in official settings and frequent anti-American comments in the presence of foreign military personnel. The officer who reprimanded Vindman, LTC Jim Hickman, describes Vindman as a “political activist in uniform.”
The election of Donald Trump was the beginning of a long process of regaining control over a government rapidly spinning out of control. To complete that process will take time, blood, sweat and tears. It will also require a thorough house cleaning from top to bottom in the bureaucracy. McLaughlin may think power resides with the mandarins in Washington, D.C. He and all others like him must be reminded that power resides with the people.