demostrator with megaphone and notebook protesting
Unidentified young demostrator with megaphone and notebook protesting against austerity cuts

Ballots are Always Preferable to Bullets

Originally published at Townhall

The Biden administration will go down in American history with the unique distinction of creating and empowering a government against the people. The original vision of American government as one that is of the people, by the people, and for the people has been dying from a thousand cuts and twisted into a rule of the elite, by the elite, and for the elite. And with that elite rule, a new pervasive corruption has come into being and compromised those elected to serve and also the unelected in the vast administrative state.

Corruption has no doubt existed from the beginning of government and politics. The United States got off to a remarkably good start because of its moral foundation, lack of class and aristocracy, and its remarkable Constitution that prescribed a limited scope for government. And for the first 175 years of American history, most political corruption revolved around self-dealing, cronyism, favors, and insider information on business deals, with government being used as a vehicle for limited personal enrichment.

But with government capturing the legacy media and growing into an ever-expanding administrative state—with a mammoth multi-trillion-dollar budget, massive regulations and 75,000-page tax code—the opportunity and scale of corruption has been expanded.

Understanding this problem better than most, Donald Trump decided in mid-2015 that he would run for president. Initially, many thought his candidacy was a joke, and most thought he had no chance of winning the nomination well into 2016. But he cleared the large field of well-known Republican candidates one by one and secured the nomination. In October 2016, a month before he was elected, Donald Trump drew the battle lines with a speech in which he said:

“Our movement is about replacing a failed and corrupt political establishment with a new government controlled by you, the American People. There is nothing the political establishment will not do, and no lie they will not tell, to hold on to their prestige and power at your expense. The Washington establishment, and the financial and media corporations that fund it, exists for only one reason: to protect and enrich itself…

“We will vote to put this corrupt government cartel out of business. We will remove from our politics the special interests who have betrayed our workers, our borders, our freedoms, and our sovereign rights as a nation. We will end the politics of profit, we will end the rule of special interests, we will put a stop to the raiding of our country—and the disenfranchisement of our people.”

By becoming a champion for the American people, Donald Trump was declaring war on the elite class and the Deep State in and around Washington, D.C. And the latter wasted no time in preparing for a new level of political warfare, to smear, sabotage and annihilate Trump. The FBI obtained what would turn out to be an illegitimate FISA warrant based on the phony Steele dossier paid for by Democrat rival Hillary Clinton to spy on Donald Trump’s campaign. And the spying on Donald Trump didn’t stop after he was elected but followed him all the way into the White House.

Then Michael Flynn, who knew more about corruption in the Deep State through his experience as director of the Defense Intelligence Agency early in President Obama’s second term, was chosen by Donald Trump to serve as National Security Advisor. Given Flynn’s patriotism and broad knowledge of Washington ways of corruption, the Deep State set its sights on taking him out. Once again, the FBI was used to set things up in a good cop-bad cop dynamic to get Flynn to say something that could be used against him with regard to his communication with the Russian ambassador to the United States Sergey Kisliak. It worked, Flynn was indicted in early 2017 and forced to resign his position as national security advisor. He then faced a multi-year legal battle that all but bankrupted him.

The next stage of the coup against Trump unfolded with Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of the allegation that Trump had engaged in collusion with Russia, a process that lasted two years. That turned out to be a hoax, but it succeeded in damaging Trump by opening the door to media fanfare around arrests of various associates and supporters who could be framed, such as:

– George Papadopoulos in July 2017,

– Paul Manafort and Rick Gates in October of 2017,

– Chris Collins, who turned himself in to the FBI in August of 2018.

– Roger Stone, a longtime adviser to President Trump was arrested five months later on January 25, 2019. That 29 FBI agents arrived locked and loaded at his house at pre-dawn, with lights flashing on 17 vehicles, with CNN being tipped off to capture it all on camera suggests of course that it was as much about show, intimidation, and demoralization of Trump’s base of supporters than it was about alleged wrongdoing.

– And then there was Rudy Giuliani, whose Manhattan apartment and offices were raided by the FBI on April 29, 2019.

The Mueller investigation exonerated Trump of Russian collusion, but that wasn’t about to stop the war to destroy Donald Trump. House Democrats then proceeded to impeach Trump on two charges: abuse of power and obstruction of Congress—all hinging around a phone call Trump had with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky. Trump finessed it all by making the phone call transcript public—collapsing the case and leading to vindication.

Then came the November 2020 election. Since there had been little pushback and no penalties from previous coup efforts, even those based on fraudulently obtained FISA warrants, the Deep State and Democrat Party operatives seized on the coronavirus fear environment to make yet one more coup attempt in Trump’s fourth year — this time putting in the fix on the November 2020 election to deny Trump any chance of a second term.

That effort in part focused on blanketing swing states with armies of lawyers filing suits to challenge voter ID laws, signature verification laws and extending the deadlines for mail-in ballots. Then there was a push for wholesale distribution of ballots and mail-in balloting and the placement of ballot drop boxes in eight swing states—all Democrat voting counties—made possible by Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg providing some $400 million.

The voting irregularities, the unprecedented early cessation of vote counting in key swing states where Trump had sizable leads, only to get flipped in Biden’s favor the next day when vote counting restarted, reeked of foul play to Trump’s supporters, which ultimately led to them converging on Washington on January 6, 2021 in hopes—however vague or unlikely—that some electors might refrain from certifying their state’s votes pending a forensic audit.

That was not to be and a small portion of the crowd, with incitement from well-placed agitators, entered the Capitol, creating a big media event with arrests and charges of insurrection. Shortly thereafter, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi filed yet another impeachment against Trump and later proceeded with a one-sided show trial, all clearly designed to paint Trump as an insurrectionist, which could disqualify him from being able to run for a second term in 2024.

Now, as people have digested the recent FBI raid on President Trump’s personal residence at Mar-a-Lago, what do we the people do about this unparalleled abuse of Justice Department power? Many who find this shocking are also confronted with a realization that we really are just a step or two away from becoming a full-fledged banana republic.

And just in case your normalcy bias still prevents you from seeing this, we all got another jolt in last week’s signing into law the misnamed Inflation Reduction Act. Among various provisions, this law provides $80 billion to the IRS to hire 87,000 new agents. That will almost double its present size, making the IRS larger than the Pentagon, the State Department, the FBI, and the Border Control combined. Such an enlarged IRS is inexplicable and makes little sense, until you do a little investigative research and connect the dots with such facts as the IRS having already stockpiled some 5 million rounds of ammunition and its posting advertisements for hiring people experienced, and/or willing to be trained, in the handling of firearms.

Move over FBI, there is a new federal agency being added to the government gestapo to harass and intimidate the American people. The answer? Overcome every false flag October surprise, show up in overwhelming numbers on Nov. 8, and make sure ballots avert bullets.

Scott S. Powell

Senior Fellow, Center on Wealth and Poverty
Scott Powell has enjoyed a career split between theory and practice with over 25 years of experience as an entrepreneur and rainmaker in several industries. He joins the Discovery Institute after having been a fellow at Stanford’s Hoover Institution for six years and serving as a managing partner at a consulting firm, RemingtonRand. His research and writing has resulted in over 250 published articles on economics, business and regulation. Scott Powell graduated from the University of Chicago with honors (B.A. and M.A.) and received his Ph.D. in political and economic theory from Boston University in 1987, writing his dissertation on the determinants of entrepreneurial activity and economic growth.