Sunday, September 11, 2016

Deplorables of the Deep State

While the nation ostensibly mourns the thousands of victims of the 9/11 attacks today, thousands of elite pathocrats and plutocrats are cackling, silently yet maniacally. September 11th is the permanent catastrophe that keeps right on giving to them. It's always Christmas for the Deep Security State, a behemoth so big and so unaccountable and so flush with cash that even the president himself cannot be aware of all its myriad moving parts. 

As reported by Dana Priest and William Arkin, 9/11 has spawned a virtual Fourth Branch of government which grows secretly and exponentially with every passing anniversary of the attacks:
* Some 1,271 government organizations and 1,931 private companies work on programs related to counterterrorism, homeland security and intelligence in about 10,000 locations across the United States.
* An estimated 854,000 people, nearly 1.5 times as many people as live in Washington, D.C., hold top-secret security clearances.
* In Washington and the surrounding area, 33 building complexes for top-secret intelligence work are under construction or have been built since September 2001. Together they occupy the equivalent of almost three Pentagons or 22 U.S. Capitol buildings - about 17 million square feet of space.
* Many security and intelligence agencies do the same work, creating redundancy and waste. For example, 51 federal organizations and military commands, operating in 15 U.S. cities, track the flow of money to and from terrorist networks.
* Analysts who make sense of documents and conversations obtained by foreign and domestic spying share their judgment by publishing 50,000 intelligence reports each year - a volume so large that many are routinely ignored.
Therefore, all the president can do to try and control the permanent War on Terror is to renew America's State of Emergency for a 16th straight year, and continue issuing proclamations and uttering platitudes about the Nine Eleven Generation. These are the young people who have never known a day when their nation has not been at war.  Although the marketing campaigns are creepily similar, they are not to be confused with the Pepsi Generation. That might be way too crass.

Crass, my ass: Coke, in true capitalistic competitive spirit, marked our great national day of hegemony and death by constructing a Twin Towers replica made entirely out of soda cans. To add insult to injury, they built it in a Florida Walmart. The marketing geniuses apparently didn't realize the display was in bad taste until thousands of shoppers told them so, and the exhibit was duly removed by $8-an-hour associates with no company health insurance benefits.

Meanwhile, 9/11 continues to be very, very good for neoliberal capitalism. As Nobel Laureate J.M. Coetzee writes in his Diary of a Bad Year, 
The bogeyman Osama bin Laden has succeeded beyond his wildest dreams. Armed with nothing but Kalashnikovs and plastic explosives, he and his followers have terrorized and demoralized the West, driving nations into wholesale panic. To the bullying, authoritarian, militaristic strand in Western political life, Osama has been a gift from the gods.
No matter that U.S. special forces executed a cowering Osama in 2012 in the run-up to Barack Obama's re-election campaign. The patriotic spirit of terror lives on, with or without him.

The September 11 attacks were the pretext to invade Iraq a year and half later.  Nearly 7,000 U.S. service people and at least a quarter of a million civilians have died since the start of the war, which continues with the deployment of at least a thousand new Gen-9/11 troops to fight Isis. Obama's drones have murdered at least hundreds of innocent women and children in areas with whom this country is not even officially at war.

Bill Quigley writes:
Since 9/11 US spending on our military cost well over $3 trillion. Direct combat and reconstruction costs for wars in Afghanistan and Iraq since 9/11 have officially cost US taxpayers $1.6 trillion dollars according to the Congressional Research Service.   Additional trillions have been spent on growing the Pentagon budget and for present and future increased health and disability benefits for veterans.
The US military captures 55 percent of our national discretionary spending and spending on veterans benefits is another 6 percent. Since 9/11 military spending has increased by 50 percent while spending on other discretionary domestic spending increased by 13 percent according to the National Priorities Project.
War profiteers like Boeing and Lockheed Martin and Raytheon have raked in billions of dollars in profits in the 15 years since 9/11. Although Saudi Arabia has been at least indirectly implicated in the attacks, the United States continues to sell that repressive regime billions of dollars worth of arms for the slaughter of Yemeni civilians. President Obama is expected to veto a bill which would allow 9/11 families to sue Saudi Arabia for monetary damages.

Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton rails against the millions of Donald Trump supporters who have been carefully and incessantly taught to be Islamophobes by the leaders and corporate media of America. The "deplorables" of Flyover Country simply didn't wake up one morning and start railing against Muslims based upon any direct knowledge or experience. They simply turned on CNN and Fox and MSNBC and watched the sycophantic mass media cozily embed themselves with the American invaders. They learned to think of Muslims as bad guys whose pictures were on decks of cards. "Clash of civilizations" propaganda has been polluting our airwaves with a vengeance for going on two decades.

It seems that Clinton forgot to notice all the rotten eggs of the Military-Industrial complex in her own Basket of Deplorables. Despite an overpowering reek, they're nesting there comfortably in their abundant money grass. Not only have they never been convicted of torture and war crimes, graft and corruption, they are getting pride of place at the gourmet table. And because they're encased in solid gold, there's no danger of them ever getting devoured themselves. People are too weary to develop a taste for rebellion against the forever wars being waged in all our names.

So we turn away in apathy or disgust. And then we hold our noses, and we choose a commander in chief using the parts of our brains which process fear rather than exercising those which enable rational thought.


Jay–Ottawa said...

" Some 1,271 government organizations and 1,931 private companies work on programs related to counterterrorism, homeland security and intelligence in about 10,000 locations across the United States…[and beyond]."

See Genesis 11. What we have here is another Tower of Babel, only this one branches out laterally in all directions, forever. Impossible to knock this tower down with airplanes.

Well, how about the Lord's curse of so many messages, too many languages and the resulting confusion? The US has that one covered too, thanks to Google translate and lots of other algorithms. No hubris here, gods; move ye on.

Only in America do they have the know-how and commitment to press on, whatever it takes. Afghanistan may have been the graveyard of other empires, but not for America, which is the exception, remember. Americans are sure to succeed with their new Tower of Babel replacing the old Twin Towers.

What other nation deserves as much credit for leading the charge, whether by land or sea, whether by carbon or nukes, to meet the Sixth Extinction or Armageddon, which ever you prefer, at least half way?

Jeremy Horne, Ph.D. said...

I haven't seen Karen Garcia out there for a long time, though I haven't been observing blogs like this much. However, I just came across this piece, and after having read it, I am of the opinion that it needs to be distributed more widely than here. I would call it necessary and critical reading. For my part I have posted it on Facebook and intend to refer to it in the future. I would suggest that Karen go to Alternet dot org and get it published, as well and in other locations where it will be widely read (Truthdig, etc.)

annenigma said...

You know who should be thrown into that basket of Deplorables? The Tobacco Industry! Only the MIC is more sinister but there are far too many other close runners-up.

Big Tobacco has directly profited from war since WWI by donating their addictive pesticidal poison to the troops. The military has acted as their shipper and distributor and included them in rations distributed to troops, ostensibly to help them relax but of course just capitalizing on the emotions of fear, stress, anxiety, and boredom in order to create lifelong, addicted customers. They've had a dynamite advertising campaign to boot. They're now on their 4th or 5th generation of soldier-addicts. There's a ton of good references online discussing the link and history between tobacco and the military. It's sickening.

I didn't even know they were still at it until I recently read the industry hit a speed bump in August 2016 when the FDA instituted a rule prohibiting donations of free tobacco products to the troops. That also applies to their many unofficial auxiliary units, publicly known as patriotic, non-profit charities *cough*cough* which routinely include tobacco products in their care *cough*cough* packages. Even the premium cigars sent by the 'Cigars for Warriors' charity won't get through. Boo, hoo.

It shouldn't take long for those Deplorables to get that rule overturned. The right donation$ to the right Congre$$men should do the trick (another group of Deplorables). Actually, that rule change just incentivize even bigger bribes for Congress.

Someone like the Greens should construct a Big Basket of Deplorables, put symbols of the real 'bad guys' into it, have a big educational campaign to inform or remind people who is in the basket and why, then have a big party and BURN IT! The Lucky Strike package would be suitable to represent the Tobacco Industry, and a giant dollar bill would be a perfect fit for Congress. A replica of a nuclear bomb could represent the whole Military-Industrial Complex.

Visuals like that could do a world of good to remind the electorate who the REAL Deplorables are would help prevent that corporatist cabal from turning citizens against each other.

Karen Garcia said...

I certainly don't wish Hill any physical ill as she battles her pee-new-moanya, but how about the symbolism of her collapsing at Ground Zero... "the day that changed everything?"

DOH (Defense of Hillary) now includes the usual neoliberal hacks bashing Pneumonia Punditry. Who are we to judge an x-ray, a sputum sample, the arcana of fungal vs viral vs bacterial lung butter? Hysteria comes in myriad forms, that's for sure.

So. I hear that the latest Wall Street gimmick is betting on Hillary Futures. I am not being glib or macabre. For every percentage point drop in her poll numbers, the Market sheds a tear. Bloomberg is on it.

Also hearing talk of Bringing Back Bernie if Hillary can't get with her recovery program on DNC's schedule. Typical DOH pundits, however, are not Going There when they discuss the rules of succession. My guess is that "they" would appoint Joe Biden as the miraculous hero of a closer about the same time the other World Series gets underway.

To Jay's point, the babel is getting even more babelicious. So many deplorables to put in one measley little basket. Anne is right, Big Tobacco is in a category all its own. (wonder if Hill is a closet vaper and she aspirated?)

Finally, thanks to Jeremy for your kind words. My work is regularly linked/cross-posted at other sites. And although the readership here is small compared to, say, Alternet, it is steady. I still comment at the NYT, but not as frequently as I once did.

Jay–Ottawa said...

All the world's a stage, especially during an election, more especially at Ground Zero on 9/11, and on a round-numered anniversary at that. Awesome. Even I wish Clinton a quick recovery––of her health, that is, not especially of her standings in the polls.

Either way, her reported collapse is more unwanted fallout of the deplorables from 9/11. Austerity, disparity, unemployment, evictions, drones, endless wars, so many collaterals, the trillions wasted, the erosion of civil liberties, bankers' bonuses, the privatization of everything public––all of that will be buried under a mountain of Hallmark snow right into November.

I wonder what Deep State, the director-producer backstage, always in the dark, is plotting: Bring on Clinton's understudy, Joe Biden? We'll know if that's in the program for the next act by how much play the Biden story gets in the days ahead on the front pages of the MSM. Over on the op-ed page, stage left (kinda), Krugman's lines are in for a rewrite: Forget Bernie! Hillary who? Feel the Bide.

Neil said...

Karen, this is a fine piece on the 9/11 industry. But someday the memory of 9/11 will fade, just like the memory of December 7, 1941 is fading now. President Franklin Roosevelt proclaimed the attack on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, as "a date which will live in infamy".

Regarding Hillary’s "recovery" after spending 90 minutes at Chelsea’s $10.5 million dollar hedge-funded condo, it just does not add up in my view. What could HRC get at Chelsea’s place that she could not get at the nearest hospital Emergency Room, that would cause her to emerge all happy and energetic, 90 minutes after collapsing and being thrown like a limp rag doll into a van? All we can do is speculate. But a tune by Eric Clapton comes to mind.

Eric Clapton - Cocaine

In America we drug-test workers who flip burgers for a living. Is it too much to ask that candidates for U.S. president get drug tested? Given all the video evidence calling into question Hillary’s fitness to serve, the Congress should mandate an independent examination.

If Hillary Clinton is elected president, she is subject to removal from office for disability under the Twenty-fifth Amendment (Amendment XXV) to the United States Constitution, which Wikipedia says "...supersedes the ambiguous wording of Article II, Section 1, Clause 6 of the Constitution..."

Article III federal judges, who hold office for life "during good behavior", are subject to removal from office under the Judicial Conduct and Disability Act of 1980, 28 U.S.C. §§ 351-364. From the U.S. Courts website:

"Under the Judicial Conduct and Disability Act, anyone can file a complaint in federal court alleging that a federal judge has engaged in misconduct or become disabled."

Separately, the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Rule 35, provides for Physical and Mental Examinations

States have similar rules of procedure. The Florida Rules of Civil Procedure, Rule 1.360, provides for Examination of Persons.

I’m against the idea of bringing Sanders back. He had his chance, and blew it badly. Its time for a Mulligan, a do-over of the primary process.

Regarding the basket of deporables, a House Beautiful magazine story about Hillary Clinton's Home in Chappaqua, New York, reports at slide 13 of 17,

"No local golf or country clubs would admit the Clintons."

"Members were concerned about the level of disruption the Clintons would create, so they had to join the next closest option... Donald Trump's Trump National Golf Club Westchester."

The sooner planet Earth is rid of the Clintons, the better. Whatever act of god the almighty chooses is fine with me. I can’t muster any faux concern or well-wishes for those evildoers.