Media Patrick Lawrence Trump

Patrick Lawrence: Trump & the Stormy Deep State

We keep coming face-to-face with the wreckage of the Russiagate years, when the 45th president threatened the national security apparatus for, possibly, the first time since Kennedy fired Allen Dulles as C.I.A. director in 1961.
Former U.S. President Donald Trump at a “rally to protect elections” in Phoenix, July 2021. (Gage Skidmore /The Star News Network, CC BY-SA 2.0, Wikimedia Commons)

By Patrick Lawrence / Consortium News

We happened upon a video of Donald Trump the other evening that, in its first few minutes, had our socks rolling up and down. The man who was our 45th president and who would be our 47th blasts “the entire globalist neocon establishment” and “the Deep Staters chasing monsters and phantoms overseas [and] perpetually dragging us into endless wars.” Trump tells us now he wants to see a major overhaul of the Pentagon, the national-security apparatus and the intelligence agencies.

“President Biden has brought us closer to World War III than we have ever been,” Trump asserts. “Every day this proxy battle in Ukraine continues, we risk global war. We must be absolutely clear that our objective is to immediately have a total cessation of hostilities. We need peace without delay.”

And then:

“We have to finish the process of fundamentally revaluing NATO’s purpose and NATO’s mission. Our foreign policy establishment keeps trying to pull the world into conflict with a nuclear-armed Russia based on the lie that Russia represents our greatest threat.”

Then a pause for effect, and this:

“The greatest threat to Western civilization today is not Russia. It’s probably more than anything else ourselves.”

Not to simplify matters unduly, but now you know why the New York District Attorney’s office is about to issue a warrant for Trump’s arrest on felony charges. The Manhattan D.A., Alvin Bragg, is in this case serving as a petty appendage of the Deep State. And as it was in 2016, so it is now: The Deep State does not want the man who says things such as the above-quoted to be president and commander-in-chief.

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Newsweek made available a one-minute snippet of this video, which was taped last Thursday, in this piece by ILA Slisco. Breitbart, if you care to wade in, carries a slightly longer segment here. Truth Social, a Trump-owned social media platform, offers the whole of it. But accessing it requires membership in something called “Truth.” I’m not myself a joiner of organizations with names such as this.  

You listen to the first few minutes of the Thursday video and you are half way to deciding to vote for Trump if he again wins the Republican Party nomination. But soon enough The Donald falls off the deep end, as is his wont. Before you know it the antiwar, anti–NATO, anti-anti–Russia candidate is on about “the collapse of the nuclear family” and other such social ills:

“It’s the Marxists who would have us become a godless nation worshipping at the altar of race, gender and the environment.”

For the record, I do not think any public figure in America who trades in this kind of paranoid rhetoric should rise above the level of under-assistant third selectman in a town of no more than 600 residents.

Clearing the Way for 2024  

But the John Birchy side of Donald Trump is not the point as he awaits Bragg’s indictment and arrest warrant. The point is to get him out of the political process and maybe off the streets by the 2024 campaign season. This has been the Democratic Party leadership’s intent — chock-a-block with conniving Deep Staters as it is — since Trump declared his foreign policy positions on the campaign trail in 2016.

It is yet more urgent for the Democrats and the national security apparatus to keep Trump out of the 2024 presidential race given Joey Biden’s shocking mental deterioration even since he assumed office two years ago. Did you see the video of Biden during his meeting with Leo Varadkar, the Irish Taoiseach, in the Oval Office last Thursday? Note his demeanor. Listen to him. Cue cards to remember it is St. Patrick’s day? No wonder White House operatives with wired ears frantically shooed reporters out of the room when it came time for questions. Biden’s clinically out of it at this point.

The D.A.’s case, as widely reported, has to do with a porn star named Stormy Daniels, who claims to have had a hotel-room liaison with Trump back in 2006. Trump’s lawyer, Michael Cohen, seems to have paid Daniels $130,000 in keep-quiet money as the November 2016 elections approached. Trump is alleged to have paid Cohen the same amount when billed later for legal fees.

Stormy Daniels speaking at an event at Politics & Prose book store in Washington, D.C., Dec. 3, 2018. (Victoria Pickering, Flickr, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Bragg’s case rests on allegations that Trump concealed a hush-money payment that amounted to an election-law violation.

I do not know the legal merits of Bragg’s allegations, but they seem frail to me. The Federal Election Commission and the Federal Prosecutors Office in New York looked at the case earlier on and saw too little in it to bother with. The latter’s attorneys were in an uproar, you may recall, before the office ducked out.

I don’t blame them. A married man pays a blackmailing bed partner to shut up. Will you tell me something new under the sun, and then tell me how this will stand in a court of law as election interference? This case is far shabbier than it is interesting, important, or of any genuine consequence.

Let me make this point another way. I don’t give a tinker’s damn whether Donald Trump and Stormy Daniels enjoyed conjugal relations 17 years ago or whether she finagled some dough out of him, and cases of this level of “election interference” in American politics are simply too numerous to name, not least when they involve Democrats.

Whoops! I’ve tumbled into the land of whataboutism. How much election interference do you think can be justly assigned to the Democrats, the Obama White House, the Obama Justice Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation after the Dems’ email was leaked in July 2016 and, with the eager cooperation of the press, all of these constituencies launched a relentless and very public campaign of disinformation, in many cases involving abuse of office, to smear Trump as some kind of Kremlin puppet?

Think of it this way. Whether or not Trump got in bed with a porn star in 2006, the Democrats certainly did a decade later. They couldn’t get enough of the wholesome Stormy as the 2016 elections neared. Now we find they’re still at it. This is what’s important about the Stormy Daniels case. This is why the D.A. is reportedly about to issue an indictment.

And this, readers, is real-time abuse of office. Who’s sleazier — Donald Trump, Stormy, or Alvin Bragg? Sorry, I ought not face readers with such a hard call. My vote: Bragg by a long way.  

Facing the Wreckage

We keep coming face-to-face with all the wreckage of the Russiagate years, when Trump’s foreign policy platform threatened the Deep State’s imperviousness to political power for, possibly, the first time since President John Kennedy fired Allen Dulles as C.I.A. director in 1961. We now find that the permanent state’s fight to defend its permanence and invisibility has destroyed a very great deal of our public space and the institutions that are meant to operate within it.

Lawlessness by way of “the law,” and we need the quotation marks now, sadly.  There’s a lot of it around.

You know, we ought to have awakened to our fate way back when the C.I.A. corrupted the Italian elections in 1948, or when the coups started with the deposition of Mohammad Mossadegh as Iran’s premier five years later. These people care nothing for the democratic process or its attendant institutions, and it would inevitably be no different when they brought their circus of disorder home.

Jimmy Dore made a couple of provocative points in a webcast the other day. One, when D.A. Bragg serves Trump — apparently some time this week, though there may be delays, we now read — we will know our legal system is an appendage of the oligarchy. Two, Trump will be in for a runaway victory in consequence of this travesty.

On the first point, Dore is perfectly right, though the corruption of our prosecutors, judges and courts has been evident to the paying-attention among us for years. I am less sure Trump will walk away with a victory next year, but — I’ll go this far — his campaign will get a boost once he is able to cast himself as a martyr to the Deep State’s machinations.

I do not like the thought of Donald Trump as a martyr to anything. He is not my idea of a hero, either, the sound foreign policy positions cited at the top of this column notwithstanding.

There is an interesting calculation to reckon up here.

Last Friday NBC News reported that the Biden administration had ordered local, state and federal law-enforcement agencies to prepare for protests and possible violence once the Trump indictment is announced. The network has since changed its headline and copy to delete the fact the orders came from the administration, but never mind: This is the way American media work these days. What is this called? Stealth editing?

There is full knowledge, we can surmise, that what Alvin Bragg is about to do will further divide the nation — if there is any room further to divide it. Full knowledge and apparently full indifference. A priority is now clear: In its pursuit of Donald Trump, the Deep State’s concern is not what some large proportion of Americans may think; it is with eliminating Trump as a political force regardless of how this segment of the citizenry may view the action.

So do all the Deep State’s post–1945 chickens come home to roost. Nice, huh? No matter what you may think of Donald Trump, it is not, not at all.

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Patrick Lawrence
Patrick Lawrence

Patrick Lawrence, a correspondent abroad for many years, chiefly for the International Herald Tribune, is a media critic, essayist, author and lecturer. His most recent book is Time No Longer: Americans After the American Century. His web site is Patrick Lawrence. Support his work via his Patreon siteHis Twitter account, @thefloutist, has been permanently censored without explanation.

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