Deep State Praetorian Guard

Much like the ancient Roman Praetorian Guard went from serving the personal protection needs of the emperor to becoming the arbiters of Roman imperial power to serve their own interests, the American Deep State has morphed from serving the needs of the country to protecting its own power through the selection of leaders favorable to its interests.

Emperor Augustus established the Praetorian Guard to serve as his personal security detail since Roman law forbid legions from entering the city. This was intended to prevent ambitious Roman generals from marching their legions into Rome in a show of intimidating force designed to improve their prospects of being elected consul or to outright perpetrate a coup to seize power. Ironically, Augustus became emperor in the wake of the assassination of his uncle Julius Caesar when he, Marc Antony, and Marcus Lepidus formed the Second Triumvirate to defeat Caesar’s assassins. Augustus emerged as the winner when this triumvirate eventually broke down to become the sole Roman emperor after Antony’s defeat at the Battle of Actium in 31 BC.

In addition to serving as the personal security detail of the emperor, the Praetorian Guard served as firefighters, performed at the Roman games, and acted as a secret police force engaged in espionage, intimidation, arrests, and killings to protect the emperor. As their power increased, the Praetorian Guard realized their ability to control the selection of new emperors when they famously engineered the assassination of hated emperor Caligula and installed Claudius as his successor in AD 41. Thus had the Praetorian Guard transitioned from being protectors of the emperor to selectors of the emperor.

Donald Trump’s election as president has exposed a number of fault lines in American politics, but none as important as the influence of the Deep State bureaucracy in undermining or protecting presidential administrations. Tales of backroom shady deals to back one political candidate over another were always the purview of political bosses separate from the politically agnostic bureaucracy which continued working through administration transitions oblivious to the political ideologies of their leaders. After World War II, the establishment of permanent intelligence agencies to provide information and perspective on foreign events that informed the decisions of administrations acting in the best interests of America gave rise to a new form of bureaucratic power different from the image of paper pushing bureaucrats deciding the apportionment of government largesse.

Presidential administrations have come to rely on the various intelligence agencies to provide as clear a picture as possible in the much more complicated world of nuclear arms with their capability of reducing civilization to prehistoric levels and Islamic terrorists willing to die in service to their cause. The consequences of making mistakes in this more complicated world are much greater and demand more input to form the clearest picture possible of unfolding events. The terrorist attacks of 9/11 caught America unprepared and led to the overreaction of allowing the intelligence agencies unprecedented power in spying on Americans in violation of the Constitution to ostensibly protect us from future terrorist plots. The Founders warned that we the people should never grant additional power to the federal government for fear that it would be used against us while the ability to reclaim that power would be forever lost. Benjamin Franklin also warned that those who would surrender power to the government for the illusion of security deserved neither power nor security. As terrible as they were, the Islamic terrorist attacks of 9/11 should never have been used to justify so egregious a violation of constitutional rights as those granted to the intelligence agencies. Legal permission to spy on Americans has been abused tremendously while the intelligence agencies have come to expect their ability to do so to be an entitlement that they are unwilling to relinquish.

The permission to spy on Americans has provided the intelligence agencies and the bureaucrats who staff them the ability to collect damaging information that can be used as leverage in future confrontations. It has been learned through various sources that the intelligence agencies have spied on members of Congress, political opponents of the Obama administration, prominent political figures, and whistleblowers daring to reveal illegal activity of federal agencies and Obama administration officials. This information has been illegally leaked to the press to destroy the credibility of political opponents with the full participation of Obama administration officials such as Susan Rice, yet no threat of criminal prosecution looms over their heads despite the overwhelming evidence publicly available.

The blatant, unconstitutional abuse of rights perpetrated by the Obama administration to further its political aims is unprecedented in American history and leaves ordinary Americans reeling from the realization of just how far the political leadership has strayed from the Constitution over the past few years. Obama’s legacy is unraveling precisely because Americans realize just how corrupt his administration was. Obama managed to seed his political acolytes throughout the federal bureaucracy to protect his legacy, and it is these operatives who are undermining President Trump to thwart his unravelling of the Obama administration’s advancement of the radical regressive agenda.

Americans watch as Deep State bureaucrats from inside the intelligence agencies leak classified information to their media acolytes that was obtained in violation of the Constitution’s Fourth Amendment protections against unreasonable search and seizure all in an effort to discredit the Trump administration for fear that President Trump will shrink their budgets and remove the power to which they now feel entitled. President Trump has been accused of collusion with the Russians despite the fact that no collusion ever existed, the Russians became our allies to some extent after the Cold War, and the entire Russian collusion narrative was fabricated to distract from Hillary Clinton’s disastrous campaign loss. Having failed to convince skeptical Americans that the Russian collusion narrative was anything but pure fiction, the left is attempting to convince Americans that President Trump obstructed justice in a cover up despite the fact that there was never a crime from which to obstruct justice in the first place. Former FBI director James Comey sought to promote himself by grandstanding, and President Trump rightly fired him. Previous calls by Democrats that Comey should be fired instantly morphed to angry denouncements that President Trump fired Comey to prevent discovery of Russian collusion in a hypocritical contortion worthy of Olympic athletes.

Deep State bureaucrats are undermining the Trump administration by refusing to carry out administration policies, leaking damaging classified information to the press to keep the administration on the defensive, and employing activist federal judges to block Trump administration initiatives such as halting immigration from terrorist countries where vetting is not able to ensure the flow of terrorists bent on attacking Americans is stopped. Trump’s election revealed the inability of the left to accept defeat without going berserk and resorting to violence, the blatant leftist bias exhibited by the media, and the presence of a menacing Deep State bureaucracy undermining his administration to the frustration of his supporters. Americans realize that this Deep State bureaucracy ultimately threatens their ability to live in a constitutional republic purporting to guarantee freedom and protection from the government.

American colonists revolted from Great Britain because they were tired of Britain dictating unreasonable conditions on their ability to live their lives as free men. Britain saw the American colonies as a source of wealth from which they could extract profits while using the colonists as a source of cheap labor to realize this ambition. The colonists were expected to acquiesce in this arrangement and be grateful for the few crumbs that fell their way. History demonstrates that the colonists had something else in mind as they violently overthrew the British and established their own country under a Constitution which specifically addressed the most egregious abuses the colonists had suffered under the British. It was the intention of the Founders that Americans would be protected from these egregious abuses ever being perpetrated upon them by the federal government they sought to establish.

It is indeed disturbing to realize just how far we as a country have strayed from the original intent of the Founders as embodied in the Constitution all in the name of reasonableness and security and justice and other nebulous concepts fabricated by the left. Conservatism seeks to preserve fidelity to the Constitution and the noble intentions of the Founders to maximize the personal freedom of Americans tempered by the personal responsibility necessary to preserve that freedom. It is the intolerant left which seeks to undermine the Constitution and constrain the freedom of Americans in service to nonsensical concepts such as homosexual marriage, social justice, and all other manner of deceits perpetrated along the lines of Saul Alinsky and his intention of overwhelming the system by using the rules of the system to destroy the system. At its heart, the left’s goal is destruction with nary a thought of what will replace that destruction. Conservatives know that chaos and anarchy will ultimately replace that which the left destroys, and we will all suffer the inevitable reduction in the standard of living which results.

The fall of the Roman Empire was hastened by the antics of the Praetorian Guard as their abuse of Roman law undermined observance of the law by Roman citizens who had become jaded and cynical watching the powerful ignore the law to further their own interests. So it is in America as we watch the wealthy and powerful ignore the law with little consequence while we continue to be oppressed by the law wielded in service to these same wealthy and powerful elites. Just as the Roman Empire fell due to the corruption which undermined its institutions, so too can the American empire fall for the very same reasons. It is said that those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it, and it is very likely that maxim is about to prove correct once again.

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