In a world where those who subscribe to conspiracy theories are relegated to one tribe and those who think they’re all irrational are relegated to another, it’s important that some of us find a better way to explain things. Keep in mind, just because I don’t believe in most of those theories, doesn’t mean they’re not out to get me. Sorting the U.S. populous into two cultural camps needs to be seen for what it is, a roughly designed strategy that effectively nullifies the power of any group to generate change; it is perverse, but not inevitable!. So, we have to ask ourselves who could be so tied to the status quo that they would devise a strategy to preclude change and implement that strategy at considerable financial cost?
Over the past five decades the wealthiest Americans have waged a battle to augment their financial privilege and guarantee their power and position relative to most of the rest of the public. They have done so by systematically undermining the power of organized labor, by creating a relationship with law makers and regulators based on campaign contributions, by employing highly paid lobbyists, and by shifting their support to whichever party can provide enough opposition to block progress. They seek to influence laws and enforcement practices that favor not only their profits, but more importantly, their competitive advantage. For these interests money talks everything else crawls.
This process has taken many forms and, critically, has advanced under administrations of both parties. Besides gutting the effectiveness of labor organizations through the passage of right-to-work laws, it has expedited the offshoring of jobs (NAFTA, Bill Clinton, Al Gore), pushed for large bailouts and other corporate welfare giveaways to big business, stifled competition by failure to enforce monopolistic practices and mergers and has created a revolving door of corporate executive-legislator-lobbyist that allows corporations to write laws that regulate their own behavior. It’s a case where the fox has purchased the henhouse.
It is not however, a conspiracy. It is not written down or even verbalized in specific words, that’s what makes it so hard to reform. It is what you might call an unwritten contract of convenience. It is legal corruption, plain and simple, and it has become the norm. The principals in this group are highly esteemed, effective money-making machines who occupy a somewhat sacred place in the eyes of the American public, and paying huge sums in the form of advertising on all media platforms to artificially maintain their revered status.
On one hand you can’t blame people who are extremely good at making money for making more, but you can blame them for rigging the system so they can make more money easier and faster than anyone else and keep more of it for themselves.
The myth that perpetuates the adoration of these monied moguls is supply side economics. It claims they are the job creators, the investors and the innovators. This is a false narrative debunked even by the Reagan appointee who first proposed it (David Stockman), but one that dies hard because much money is being spent to prop it up by people it works for at the top. Real stability and prosperity come when the people who would readily spend and circulate their money get fairly compensated for their economically essential jobs. Big money is not so much taking money from the little gal as it is exploiting her and her labor and preventing working people from acquiring the power to demand what they deserve as the real producers of wealth.
This movement is the Real Deep State. It pushes and pulls and moves invisibly whenever possible. When Donald Trump claimed he could buy whatever congressperson he chose during the 2016 campaign he wasn’t kidding, but he was being too obvious. “Shush… Donald, you’re not supposed to advertise the secret of our magic.” So, after four years of embarrassment, they dumped him. The Real Deep State became convinced Democrats were more dependable for the time being. The trick you see is balance. Use the power of big money to make sure neither side gets enough of an advantage over any extended period of time that would allow them to upset the smooth humming, well-oiled status quo.
This is not too complex for anyone to verify if they just pay close attention to the media they love to hate. Fox is balanced by MSNBC/CNN. Exxon Mobile is saving the environment from its own deplorable practices. Republican obstruction will prevent Biden from accomplishing anything significant, etc. Keep in mind the people who own and direct the most watched media outlets are also part of the RDS (Real Deep State). They respect the financial power that maintains their monopoly control. Don’t bite the hand…etc.
In the 2020 Campaign the DNC made a conscious decision to move to the center-right (solid status quo) and pitch the new “establishment wing” of the party to suburbanites, urban workers and the long suffering and decreasingly-loyal minority population. The Dems remained faithful to their monied masters, rejected the progressive wing of the party and totally abandoned any hope of winning the rural working class which, not surprisingly turned out in record numbers for Trump. It worked for the Dems—barely, but it left the supposed “party of the working poor” beholding to the whims of Wall Street, corporate, banking and billionaire interests. Those whims can change on the drop of a dime, are geared only to helping themselves, and will turn on the Dems if they move toward anything un-establishment enough to really help the American people.
Meanwhile the power of Trump’s base can “primary” any Republican candidate in the next election cycle, leaving the GOP in the unenviable position of having to defend, or at least avoid offending, the world’s most conspired against victim since Julius Caesar. So it goes.
In conclusion I would ask you, as a Democrat, Republican or independent what change do you think would improve politics in Maryland, in the U.S.A.?
Peter Taillie writes from Greensboro. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.