Editor's Note: Did you cast your vote on Super Tuesday hoping to make a difference?

In today’s Weekend Edition, Agora founder Bill Bonner explains that there’s no such thing as democracy. The Deep State will name the next president…

Bill originally wrote this essay on March 2, 2016 in Bill Bonner’s Diary.

By Bill Bonner, editor, The Bill Bonner Letter

Let’s take a look at the rise of the Deep State…the “shadow government” that really calls the shots.

After China’s leader Deng Xiaoping announced that to get rich was “glorious”…the Berlin Wall fell…and political scientist Francis Fukuyama proclaimed the “end of history,” Americans naively believed that the world was evolving in the same direction—toward us.

We were the Chosen People…the exceptional country…the nation the rest of the world looked up to, aspired to be, and couldn’t live without.

For example, we had little doubt that it was just a matter of time before China—in the relentless grip of globalized capitalism…and infested with graduates from Wharton and Harvard Business School—would surely become more like the U.S.

Soon, the Chinese would be watching inane TV shows, too. There would be eight-lane highways connecting major cities…and billboards advertising ambulance-chasing shyster lawyers.

There would be McMansions…bought with 110% loan-to-value mortgages…and Chicken McNuggets on every street corner.

Auto loans, student loans, and payday loans wouldn’t be far behind. And corporate chiefs would brazenly manipulate the market to give themselves undeserved bonuses…using unreal money borrowed at unreal rates from unscrupulous bankers.

The Chinese would certainly soon develop a confident Fourth Estate, too—a free press that would dig the dirt on the politicians and bureaucrats…and then quietly sweep it back under the carpet.

And democracy?

The flame under the pot of liberty was burning in China as in America. It would be only a matter of time before it bubbled up into elections…with fatuous candidates, pledging more and more of other peoples’ money…until the voters were completely cooked.

But what a shock! Instead of the Chinese becoming more like us, we’re becoming more like them.

And here, we focus on the one critical aspect: They have the Communist Party running the show. We have the Deep State in command.

Not-So-Super Tuesday

People always want to get wealth and power in the easiest possible way. And the easiest way is to take it from other people.

That is the role of government—the only institution that can steal and kill legally. (It’s amazing what you can get away with when you make the laws!)

The gun smoke of the American and French Revolutions obscured this brutal reality. They showed that you really can fool most of the people most of the time.

Just convince the plain people that they can play a role in government. Not only will they stand in line at polling stations before dawn (as they did in Virginia during the Super Tuesday presidential primaries), they will send their sons to die in your wars…and pay more tax, believing it is for their own good!

Germany’s first chancellor, Otto von Bismarck, explained how to keep the little people in line: Promise to take care of them from cradle to grave.

You tax them…then give back some of their tax money in the form of social welfare programs.

A New Power

Until the 19th century, the main source of wealth was land.

In Europe, it was owned by a few rich “rentiers” and farmed by many poor farmers. But after the farmers got the vote, the big landowners found themselves at a political disadvantage.

They didn’t have enough votes to protect their wealth at the ballot box. And they didn’t have enough wealth to protect the back corridors and smoke-filled rooms behind them.

A new power and new wealth was rising in cities and factories. “Unearned wealth” or unfair “rents” couldn’t keep up. It got a bad reputation. The new thing was “free enterprise.” And it was making society rich.

This was a different kind of wealth. It came from work, skill, and investment. You had to earn it.

The new rich were adding new wealth. They weren’t just taking wealth away from the laboring masses. The old rich—rattling around in their big, unheated piles, with holes in their sweaters and zeros in their bank accounts—added nothing.

The landowners lost power. Gradually, the big estates, many of which could be traced to larcenies and conquests from the medieval era, were broken up and taxed away.

And for a while—when it was fresh and new—democracy seemed to work. The “dead hand” of the past fell away. The old rentiers were left behind.

But government was still in business. Smart people soon discovered how to use it…

…And a new class of rentier arose.

More to come.



Editor’s Note: Like Doug Casey, Bill Bonner believes the Deep State is leading us into a global financial crisis. As Bill warns in this presentation, the cronies behind the Deep State have pushed the world to the brink of an irreversible disaster.

To hear Bill explain how that disaster will unfold—and more importantly, how it’ll change your life forever—click here.