PATRICK LAWRENCE: Biden’s Secret Stash

If this president didn’t know he was in possession of classified documents, in some cases for more than a decade, he simply is not qualified to hold any public office allowing him such access.

U.S. President Joe Biden with reporters on Jan. 20. (White House, Cameron Smith)

By Patrick Lawrence
Special to Consortium News

There are two things I love about the mess our more or less senile president finds himself in as his hoard of classified documents comes to light in a rolling barrage of revelations.

One is the mainstream media’s quite unbelievable faith in the American public’s stupidity. Does anything more persuasively measure the stupidity of these media?

Joe “My Corvette’s in the Garage” Biden howls with indignity when Donald Trump gets caught with classified files at Mar–a–Lago, his Florida estate. Then our serving president is discovered with his own stashes of secret documents here, there and everywhere.

Oh, but it is very different, we read. Not at all the same, because Trump didn’t cooperate with the National Archives and the Justice Department, and Biden did.

As the man from Scranton now takes to saying, “I did nothing wrong. There’s no there there.” The New York Times, the other major dailies and the corporate broadcasters all report this with straight faces: The Trump case is one thing, Biden’s another.

So are we urged to think illegal possession of classified documents is not the issue. No need to consider this. It’s all about attitude.

If you exhibit the right attitude when you are caught red-handed in a criminal act, you can stand there and claim innocence, insist that the garage where classified documents were found is locked because your Corvette is parked in it, and the media will go all the way for you.

They can’t be so stupid as to think their readers and viewers are so stupid, I’ve said to myself since CBS News opened the door onto this farrago of nonsense a couple of weeks ago. How wrong I have been.

We have a 50–year record attesting to Joe Biden’s stupidity. We now know, if we didn’t already, that there is no limit to our mainstream media’s defense of his stupidity.

More Post-Trump Authoritarianism 

In my read, this is another feature of the liberal authoritarianism that emerged after Trump’s upset victory over Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election. It has been “blue no matter who” since then: Biden’s our guy no matter what — in this case, no matter how stupid.

The lead reporters covering Biden’s legal breach for the Times merit brief mention. Michael Shear, Katie Rogers and Charlie Savage are nothing more than salespeople. They would be better off — and we would, too — if they forgot about journalism and hawked used cars at some vast lot in a New Jersey suburb.

Joe Biden and Donald Trump, a sitting president and his immediate predecessor, are now subject to investigations run by separate special counsels assigned by the Justice Department.

There is a very large truth attaching to this startling reality. Whether or not Americans are aware of it, and my impression is few are, they are now face-to-face with the extent to which our government conducts its business in secret.

This is the second thing I love about these matching messes over classified documents. A paradox here: It is illegal for a government official to possess classified documents without authorization, and it is perfectly normal to do so given the extent to which classified material forms the basis of U.S. policy — notably, but not only, its foreign policy.

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A Culture of Concealment

There is a moment to seize here, at least (and perhaps only) in theory. If Americans can begin now to come to terms with the culture of concealment that has grown over Washington for decades like kudzu on a South Carolina telephone pole, they can begin reasserting democratic control over institutions of government that now operate in secret, in perfect sequestration, and so with indifference to the public’s wishes and preferences.

Pat Moynihan, the late senator from New York, was among the first to assert that secrecy in Washington was on the way to becoming a crisis in American democracy.

In Secrecy, his 1998 survey of the phenomenon, Moynihan wrote of “secrecy centers” throughout the American government, of “the routinization of secrecy,” of “concealment as a modus vivendi.”

President Gerald R. Ford with  Daniel Patrick Moynihan, then U.S. ambassador to the U.N., in 1975. (U.S. National Archives)

Something called the Information Security Oversight Office — a secret in itself to most of us — each year totes up the number of secrets government bodies created during the previous 12 months.

The ISOO was founded during the Carter administration, in 1978. It is interesting to note that its predecessor, the Interagency Classification Review Committee, dated to the Nixon administration and was comprised of officials from the Defense Department, the State Department, the Justice Department and the Central Intelligence Agency.

This list is usefully suggestive of which government institutions kept the secrets that mattered most: those managing foreign policy and the military-industrial complex, intel and covert operations, and domestic law-enforcement.

The J. Edgar Hoover Building, headquarters of the FBI in Washington, D.C. (Tim Evanson, CC BY-SA 2.0, Wikimedia Commons)

As Moynihan explained, in essence the ISOO counts the documents classified in a given year. To say these have grown exponentially from year to year without pause since Moynihan’s time is not an exaggeration.

At this point, it is commonly assumed among paying-attention people that a small proportion of what our government decides and does is visible to us. This has been my assumption, certainly, for years.

Democracy & Structures of Secrecy 

To what extent is secrecy considered essential to the conduct of policy? No one knows the answer to this more acutely, at so high a cost, than Julian Assange.

The WikiLeaks founder was early to recognize that our political culture’s infinitely elaborated structures of secrecy are “where civilization is going,” as he once put it. And he understood that these structures must be penetrated if authentic forms of democracy are to survive and prosper.

It is for Assange’s dedication to this latter project that he is now behind bars.

Donald Trump took home classified documents. Joe Biden did, too — and for many years as a senator and then Barack Obama’s veep. Did the studious Obama do the same? Did Bush I (previously a C.I.A. director, let us not forget) and Bush II?

Did Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld and the bureaucrats of rank in any given administration? In the cases of Bill and Hillary Clinton I’m not even going to ask.

The practice doesn’t much stir me, in truth. What stirs me is the extent to which secrecy is the norm and, more specifically, the extent to which secrecy makes possible the conduct of the imperialists who run our hegemonic foreign policies.

America, as an astute commentator remarked not along ago, now runs a global empire of which few of its own people are even aware.

Jan. 16, 2017: U.S. Vice President Joe Biden traveling to Kiev. (U.S. Embassy Kyiv, Flickr)

Along with “we’re cooperating” — “we got caught,” in translation — “we’re being transparent” is the other phrase the Biden administration incessantly deploys and the media repeat with not a single reporter questioning the truth of it.

Withholding the facts until CBS News uncovered them does not pass as transparent. All the nonsense excuses — my favorite being “the garage is locked” — do not bespeak transparency. They bespeak a coverup.

The most consequential of these untruths, and they are prima facie such, is that Biden didn’t know there were classified files in his Wilmington, Delaware, home, or in his private Washington office, or in his garage, or in “a storage area adjacent to the garage,” whatever that may mean.

Here’s my reply to this: If this log-rolling liar didn’t know he was in possession of classified documents, in some cases for more than a decade, he simply cannot be counted qualified to be president or hold any public office allowing him such access.

Biden’s theme as he attacked Trump after the F.B.I. raided the Mar–a–Lago property was that the former president was “irresponsible.” Tell me about it, Joe. Tell us all about it, you whose secrets may well outnumber those of anyone now holding public office.

One final question: Who exposed the presence of classified material in Biden’s residence and private office?

Given the reported divisions among Democrats as to Biden’s plans to run for a second term next year, is this a subterfuge operation conducted by those who fear for his mental decline and want decisively to knock him out of the box?

Patrick Lawrence, a correspondent abroad for many years, chiefly for The International Herald Tribune, is a columnist, essayist, author and lecturer. His most recent book is Time No Longer: Americans After the American Century. His Twitter account, @thefloutist, has been permanently censored. His web site is Patrick Lawrence. Support his work via his Patreon site.  His web site is Patrick Lawrence. Support his work via his Patreon site

The views expressed are solely those of the author and may or may not reflect those of Consortium News.

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49 comments for “PATRICK LAWRENCE: Biden’s Secret Stash

  1. LeoSun
    January 25, 2023 at 10:22

    “WHO in the Lord’s name gave“ “The Big Guy” the right,

    TO TAKE? Seriously, literally, take classified docs/$ecrets wherever “The Big Guy” f/wanted to bring ‘em, store ‘em, bank on ‘em.

    TO GRIFT? Decades on The Hill & “The Big Guy,” secretly, “GRIFTING.” And, obviously, NOBODY f/stopped Scranton’s fraud. ENABLERS, the whole f/lot of ‘em!!!

    TO CRY Ignorance? “The Big Guy,” BUSTED! “The Big Guy” cries IGNORANCE. Blame it on dementia. She’s ‘Big’ in HIS not so golden years. Incessantly yapp’n & yell’n. HE can’t remember $h*t.

    “The Big Guy” is RECKLESS & DANGEROUS. Awh, Mon, the fruit, BIDEN-HARRIS, IS ROTTEN!
    Concluding, “Majority of Democrats say Biden should be 2024 nominee: poll” is Bull-$h*t and/or fact that “a parasite cannot live alone!!!” “THEY LIVE” believing their own lies!!! Prepare for the worst.

  2. Rafi Simonton
    January 25, 2023 at 04:07


    For decades, I’ve wondered about bureaucratic obsession with secrecy. If every large country has spies, then high level government officials must know almost everything about each other.

    Therefore the real purpose of state secrets is to keep information from each country’s own citizens.

    The various agencies are known to do deliberate leaks both to gauge public opinion and to influence it. And free floating anxiety is useful politically. Don’t you want to feel safe? Don’t you want to be protected from all those threats out there? From what isn’t too clear. But since you don’t know, then let the authorities take care of it.

    How easily authority morphs into authoritarian.

    That anxiety is also a useful economic tool for selling stuff is an added bonus. Get your uppers, downers, and fashionable camo today!

  3. January 25, 2023 at 00:22

    Frightening surgery done here in this piece. And so believable, from the brains and pens of whose whose whole journalistic,
    governmental life has been truthful to a fault. But: who listened? Who believed their facts at this ‘tell out’ juncture?
    To all others: don’t keep it under the bedsheets (or in the freezer, gals and guys! You have a sacred duty to perform – to ferret
    out the truth and hhold it all up for USA and World to see. Be sure to don your flak suits. You will need them. Too much for
    the greedy ‘nazis’ to worry about who survives the trurh being told far and wide to take chances.

  4. SH
    January 24, 2023 at 18:40

    Hmm, I wonder why the comparison between Reagan and Biden hasn’t been brought up – During Iran-Contra, Reagan kept saying, “I don’t recall” and no doubt he didn’t – I think Biden’s statements about “not being aware”, or some such, are perhaps not so much evidence of prevarication – as of his mental capacity, or lack thereof.

    I suspect the idea that this was a move by DP aficionados who are scared to death Biden might actually run again in ’24 has a great deal of merit – this episode would, in their eyes, be enough to make a good case, even for him, that he should not – otherwise one has the messy scenario of people in his own party being reluctant to contest the nomination of a sitting Pres, the “leader” of their Party – we saw this in ’20, when there was a full slate of contenders, and Sanders had a good lead in the primary – then just before the SC primary, they all decided to drop out – and endorse Biden, Obama’s VP. The move by the DNC to move the first Dem primary of the season to SC, where Clyburn is a reliable stooge, is an attempt to nip a candidacy by Sanders or anyone like him, in the bud. This should be an interesting season …

    But never fear, the Vote Blue No Matter Who banner will fly high – and while i agree with Mr. Lawrence that people, as a whole, aren’t as stupid as the media takes them for, the “TINA (there is no alternative) to D/Rs, so we must choose between a LOTE (lesser of 2 evils)” is still very powerful in the public mind – if we want to rid ourselves of both “evils” we need to support and vote for non-corp 3rd parties – the public says they want them, it’s time, past time to prove it …

    Thank you, Mr. Lawrence, you are one of the best “tell it like it is” journalists out there – and if we are paying attention we will realize that the duopoly must go …

  5. Michael brian Chebo
    January 24, 2023 at 17:15

    Yes, it means Biden is out, and that’s my favorite part!

  6. LeoSun
    January 24, 2023 at 16:48

    “One final question: “WHO exposed the presence of classified material in Biden’s residence and private office?” PATRICK LAWRENCE

    A). One or more of Hunter’s all exclusive, high end, Clientele, found ‘em taped to the backside of a framed “Hunter” Painting.
    B) FLOTUS BIDEN. She just can’t fake it, anymore. The colossal challenge of faking “POTUS is a normal” 80+ years old man, is too f/much!!!
    C) Hunter Biden.

    TY, Patrick Lawrence, i absolutely love the way you think!!! TY, CN, et al. “KEEP IT LIT!”

    • LeoSun
      January 24, 2023 at 16:55

      Fingers crossed, “The Great Imitators and/or The Great Potatos,” BIDEN-HARRIS are done! Awh, Mon, the fruit is ROTTEN!!! And, “Don’t drink the water. There’s blood in the water.”

      Every generation blames the one before. Consequently, there are Questions, for the Gerontocracy’s Handlers:

      — Is this animal behavior generational? Biden is decades on The Hill.
      — The Oldigarch & his ilk, aged $enators, the “gerontocracy,” have grown old together. And, obviously, NOBODY f/stopped Scranton’s fraud? ENABLERS, the whole f/lot of ‘em!!!

      …i.e., Joey claimed he got a Full-Ride College Scholarship. Graduated w/3 degrees, @ the top of his class; Since then, hiked the Himalayas w/Xi Jinping. Grew up in the Black Church, raised by Puerto Ricans, Marched for Civil Rights. Campaigned for POTUS, from his basement & won The Selection by 81K Democrats. This is what happens when Con$umers “Vote Blue, No Matter f/WHO.”

      “WHO in the Lord’s name gave“ Joey “The Big Guy” Biden the right,”

      TO TAKE! Seriously, literally, take classified docs/$ecrets wherever “The Big Guy” f/wanted to bring ‘em, store ‘em, bank on ‘em.

      TO GRIFT! Decades on The Hill & “The Big Guy,” secretly, “GRIFTING.”

      TO CRY Ignorance. “The Big Guy,” older than the f/hills, BUSTED! “The Big Guy” cries IGNORANCE. Blame it on dementia. She’s ‘Big’ in Joey’s not so golden years. It’s not even sad. Itsa true fact, “The Big Guy” incessantly yapp’n & yell’n, can’t remember $h*t. “The Big Guy” is RECKLESS & DANGEROUS.
      Concluding, “Majority of Democrats say Biden should be 2024 nominee: poll” is Bull-$h*t!!!

      Imo, everybody, knows, the Biden-Harris duo are bankrupt. Their Domestic & Foreign agenda, Poll Numbers, Diplomacy, Statesmanship, Courtesy, Q & A’s w/Reporters, personality & brain power have collapsed and/or are straight f/up M.I.A.,

      imo, BIDEN-HARRIS, posing as POTUS masquerading as Human, are done! The lies and self-delusion is punctuated by Congress, on both sides of the aisle, clap’n for the yapp’n & yell’n. Fugg ‘Em!!!

  7. James White
    January 24, 2023 at 15:26

    The DNC knives are out for Joe Biden. Having served his nefarious purpose, he will be kicked to the curb. The DNC knows that even with rampant cheating, they won’t get away with stealing another election for this sock puppet.

  8. shmutzoid
    January 24, 2023 at 13:59

    The salient question here is: …just why does our gov’t have so many secrets to keep?? I bet the REAL history of the US can be told in these secret docs, whether they’re in an office safe or stashed in one’s home. It’d certainly reveal more truth about US governance than the fairy tales spun by school textbooks and MSM ‘news’ shows.

    Yes, this could be some subterfuge by Dem elites to force Biden not to run in ’24. Gee, maybe someday there’ll be a discovery of secret documents in some politico’s home that tells the whole story!

    • LeoSun
      January 25, 2023 at 11:23

      “The salient question here is: …just why does our gov’t have so many secrets to keep??” …..”to conceal the crimes of American imperialism, in which Biden has been up to his neck for half a century, from the American people.”

      INDEED!!! shmutzoid, “the REAL history of the US can be told in these secret docs.” “It’d certainly reveal more truth about US governance…”

      “As the WSWS pointed out last week, the real scandal is not the handling of the classified documents, but their very existence. The purpose of classification is to conceal the crimes of American imperialism, in which Biden has been up to his neck for half a century, from the American people.” (White House shake-up as attacks mount on Biden over handling of classified documents)


  9. CaseyG
    January 24, 2023 at 13:21

    Hmmmm, JOE BIDEN:
    I am sending you my grandmother’s favorite words:

    ” A man of words and not of deeds is like a garden full of weeds.”

    Of course Yoda chimes in too. ” Do or do not, there is no try.”

  10. Lois Gagnon
    January 24, 2023 at 12:55

    When those who wield enormous power become convinced of their omnipotence, they begin to get careless. I suspect this is just the tip of the iceberg as to what is about to unfold in this empire’s reckless attempts to cover up its enormous crimes. Biden and Trump are both criminals who have not been prosecuted. Imagine what could be revealed if they were. Which is why they won’t be.

    Imagine what we may learn if the US is forced to leave Ukraine after another failed attempt to destroy Russia. I’m sure the Russians have reams of information that will undo any perceptions by Americans that their government was a benign actor in Ukraine.

    Waning empire is a dangerous and messy business. Buckle up and get the popcorn ready. It’s going to be long slog to the other side.

  11. Mr Peanut
    January 24, 2023 at 12:34

    breaking news from Indiana: classified docs in Pence’s possession even though he stated on camera that he had none.

    looking forward to your coverage.

    • Cara
      January 24, 2023 at 14:53

      What’s your point?

    • Valerie
      January 24, 2023 at 16:19

      It’s true:

      “Close aides to Mike Pence discovered about a dozen classified-marked documents stored in boxes at his home in Indiana last week and turned over the materials to the US justice department, according to a top adviser to the former vice-president.”

      The WHO has now designated this “epidemic” as a disease. It shall be called “pres/vice-pres pox syndrome”. PVPPS for short. It mainly affects the elderly and there is no known cure.

  12. Rob Roy
    January 24, 2023 at 12:24

    I remember Obama saying he was going to have the “most transparent” presidency of all time. Then I looked at his chosen cabinet. Over time I realized he was even more secretive than his predecessors. The whole lot seems like a bunch of kids playing spy games and feeling puffed up in importance, while at the same time destroying entire countries. I’m baffled by patriotism and all the lies behind every foreign action the U.S. makes. There should be no secrets at all. If “America” is the great country it claims to be, secrets would be unnecessary.

  13. Frank Lambert
    January 24, 2023 at 11:59

    The “cloak and dagger” people are in their own little world with a “black budget” and basically accountable to hardly anyone.

    JFK saw through the power and secrecy of the CIA and wanted to reduce its activities and hold it accountable and possibly even dismantling it, which angered Allen Dulles, the rabid anti-communist head of the CIA, who some say, had President Kennedy taken out by non-CIA operatives.

    Since when did Presidents of the United States start bringing “classified documents” to their homes. For safekeeping?

    I agree with the John R. Moffett comment, especially the last sentence.

  14. mgr
    January 24, 2023 at 11:40

    Without transparency in governance, there is no accountability to the public and no democracy.

    • WillD
      January 24, 2023 at 20:14

      Nicely, and very succinctly, put. Thank you. This simple but devastatingly apt statement could be used in so many ways – as a headline, banner, logo, mantra, motto, tagline, war cry(!), byword, etc.

      • mgr
        January 25, 2023 at 09:22

        WillD: Thank you. Perhaps another way to put it: What is the difference between a totalitarian government and a democracy without transparency in governance? Nothing at all…

        Secrets are supposed to be necessary to keep foreign adversaries in the dark so as not to gain an advantage. In the US though, it seem that they are used primarily to keep the American public in the dark. Are all our government’s actions so nefarious? Hard not to think so. Seems like someone is always trying to hide something unsavory. Not to mention the continual misleading spin and propaganda. Sounds like the formula for growing mushrooms; keep them in the dark and feed them shit. Apparently, our government does not think very highly or kindly of its public. A democratic government of, by and for the people that was actually doing the job of representing and working for the benefit of the public should not require that nearly everything it does be a secret.

  15. January 24, 2023 at 11:30

    Any chance that those documents were plants? Maybe just old birthday cards and stuff, and somebody came along and stamped CLASSIFIED on the envelopes?

    • Valerie
      January 24, 2023 at 13:32

      Anything is possible theses days Julie. But still back to the question, who discovered them in the first place?

      I love your website. I notice you have a “document library”. Any classifieds in there by any chance? LOL.

  16. Vera Gottlieb
    January 24, 2023 at 11:28

    It never ceases to amaze me the amount of lies and fairy tales these people are capable of coming up with. Is someone keeping notes?

  17. Paul Cohen
    January 24, 2023 at 11:04

    Not knowing more than what I’ve heard in news reports, I’m willing to accept that much of this was accidental. It is easy to slip a piece of note paper inside a book and forget it is there when you put the book back on the shelf where it might stay for years. The search of Biden’s residence took thirteen hour by multiple agents, no doubt because it did take down all of the books and search them page by page. Maybe there are even some documents they missed accidentally.

    It has been reported that some documents were top secret and even higher; I’ve also heard that disputed so I don’t really know. But if so, that does trouble me. Highly classified documents are supposed to be tracked. If you check one out there should be a record and those records should be tracked. If such a document goes missing then that will be known and that will be what should trigger a search. Apparently this did happen in the case of the Trump documents, but so far as I know, that is not what happened in Biden’s case.

  18. Paula
    January 24, 2023 at 10:28

    “The National Security Act of ’47 gave us the National Security Council” Interesting to say the least, that this was formed after Dulles brought the Nazis to US in Operation Paperclip. I dare to say, they had a hand in forming this policy as a way of control.

    • robert e williamson jr
      January 24, 2023 at 14:06

      Apparently, judging from your statement you are not familiar with those very early days of CIA. The same can be said of at least 99.9% of the American populace, there in lies the heart of the problem.

      A problem that is little different the major problem that has settled in and dogs our democracy same as the dead bird from Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s poem “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner “.

      A sailor shoots an albatross and brings a hex upon ship and crew. The albatross was considered good luck to superstitious sailors, to calm the crew this sailor was punished when the Captain ordered the bird to be hung around this mans neck.

      Get a copy of or consult a copy of “the central intelligence agency an instrument of government TO 1950.

      I don’t expect you read this entire volume but I suggest you get it so you can get a firm grip on my and your reality

    • Jack
      January 24, 2023 at 18:28

      More than that, they have controlled our foreign policy in its entirety for decades. Since Dulles I & II through Kissinger and Bush I & II and until this afternoon.

    • robert e williamson jr
      January 24, 2023 at 19:25

      Paula I have some news for you. If you really wish to get a good feel for the machinations Allen Dulles and his friends involved themselves in find a copy of “THE CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY an instrument of government to 1950. The book was written by Arthur B. Darling he wrote his Preface Dec 1953. The book remained classified for 25 years.

      His book is controversial and tells much of the truth behind those early years before the Agency was actually formed up . The National Security Act was introduced March 3, 1947, passed the Senate July 9, 1947. the House July 19, 1947.and was signed into law by H.S. Truman July 26, 1947. John Foster Dulles was advisor to H.S. Truman and named Sec of State by “Ike”.

      The Atomic Energy Act was passed earlier, Introduced Dec. 20, 1946, passed the Senate June 1, 1946m, the House July 20, 1946 and signed onto law by H.S Truman Aug 1, 1946.

      This stuff gets very complicated, the History of the NSC site listed above dove tails very well with Darling account of the earliest history of CIA.

      The CIA was created, formed, Sept 18, 1947. (In order to better understand the timing of events and who answered to who see the CIA wiki) However Jan 22 , 1946 H.S. Truman created the Central Intelligence Group under the direction of Director of Central Intelligence by presidential directive. That is before either the NSA act of 1947 or the or US Atomic Energy Act of 1946 were passed. This story is complicated. To achieve a better understanding see the CIA wiki Esp. Immediate Predecessors section.

      The history becomes much more complicated by in fighting and treachery that dogged Truman.

      If you wish to understand this history search The History of the National Security Council and through a perverted twist of fate one of the most informative pieces on this topic I got a prompt for this site

      Low and behold the History of the National Security Council 1947 – 1997, which as it turns out is very informative and see after the summary the H.S. Truman Administration 1947-1953. Here you will see the gyrations Truman endured and then Ike.

      This account is one of few sources other that the long list of books I read that provide information on this topic. Please remember I’m damned sure no scholar.

      Now, do not under any circumstances get as addicted to sorting out this largest hijacking of what turned out to be the ultimate power in U. S. Government as I have.

  19. Drew Hunkins
    January 24, 2023 at 10:10

    The deep state imperialists in Washington and the establishment realm of the Dem Party are using the Biden docugate to exit him stage left. The Washington empire apparatchiks bc he’s likely the only sane voice in the room advocating against putting masses of U.S. soldiers on the ground in Ukr. The mainstream Dem Party (it overlaps quite a bit with the deep state) bc Biden’s clearly in no position to win in Nov ’24. They’d rather have Gavin Newsom.

    • Gregory Herr
      January 24, 2023 at 18:11

      Oh great. So we’ll get our young global leader, just like in Canada.

  20. Black Cloud
    January 24, 2023 at 10:07

    The only point of contention here is the incredibly naive suggestion that citizens can “reassert democratic control over institutions of government”: 1) as if they ever had it 2) by wresting it aways from corporate interests that funnel untold billions directly [and indirectly] to politicians and 3) in a system intentionally designed specifically to prevent that from ever happening.

    A national election in 50 states that have been gerrymandered into partisan districts, with different voting laws, different requirements for voter elegibility, and different voting systems, all managed by partisan state governors. Not to mention media manipulation and censorship, as evidenced by the emerging tip of the iceberg at Twitter.

    The system – a zombie government – can not be fixed, repaired, or reformed. It is corrupt to the very core and will eventually collapse upon iteself like the walking corpse that it is.

  21. Vincenzo L
    January 24, 2023 at 09:02

    Sadly, I worked a few years for National Labs, sometimes on classified docs, which were so thoroughly mind-numbing, one would have great difficulty discovering the reason for their classification. Yet, one thing was always clear. Had I been discovered walking out of the premises with one of those docs in my possession, I would’ve kissed goodbye to my security clearance and my employment; and possibly been prosecuted under the bloody Espionage Act. Nowhere was it specified that employment at particular levels or rungs of government service — Congressperson, Senator, even President — conferred exemption to these regulations. Hence, in my eyes both Trump and Biden are in violation (as are likely many others, as Mr. Lawrence implies). All excuses are therefore so much crap; excuses of the privileged flaunting that privilege. Public servants; guffaw.

  22. January 24, 2023 at 07:39

    If you are operating a world wide crime ring, it is imperative to keep the sordid details under wraps. And with that large a criminal enterprise, is is not surprising that evidence of your crimes might pop up in odd places now and then. You don’t need to hide the details of legal, honorable activities.

    • Valerie
      January 24, 2023 at 14:02

      I read with interest your May 13, 2022 article on your substack/website.

      It is pertinent to what is being played out now. The doomsday clock has just been moved to 90 seconds to midnight up from 100 seconds. (Not much leeway there.)

      Fascinating Phd you have Mr. Moffett.

  23. c
    January 24, 2023 at 05:53

    I still remember the astonishing Bill Moyers television program:

    The Secret Government: The Constitution in Crisis (November 4, 1987),

    which revealed the secret section of the 1947 National Security Act which gives a

    president unlimited power to issue a National Security Decision Directive

    authorizing the CIA or other agents to do ANYTHING, regardless of any laws

    or Constitutional checks, in order to further ‘national security’.

    Almost 40 years later we still have the CIA, the NSDD’s, and Congressional reps who spend all their time

    asking for money from corporate donors while the big decisions are made somewhere else.

    What can be done? Probably nothing, until the U.S. decisively loses a war on the ‘homeland’.


    “This fascinating and revealing documentary examines the Iran-Contra scandal as the

    most recent example of the continuing abuse of democratic values by unaccountable intelligence operations during the Cold War.

    [some excerpts from the transcript:

    BILL MOYERS: [voice-over] Admiral Gene LaRocque rose through the ranks from ensign to become a strategic planner for the Pentagon, and now heads the Center for Defense Information, a public interest group.

    GENE LaROCQUE: The National Security Act of ’47 gave us the National Security Council. Never have we had a national security council so concerned about the nation’s security that we were always looking for threats, and looking how to orchestrate our society to oppose those threats. National security was invented almost in 1947, and now it has become the prime mover of everything we do, is measured against something we invented in 1947. The National Security Act also gave us the Central Intelligence Agency.

    BILL MOYERS: [voice-over] This is the house the Cold War built: the CIA, the core of the new secret government. Its chief legitimate duty was to gather foreign intelligence for America’s new role as a world power. Soon it was taking on covert operations abroad and at home. As its mission expanded, the CIA recruited adventuresome young men, like Notre Dame’s all-American, Ralph McGehee.

    RALPH McGEHEE, Former CIA Agent: I look back to the individual that I was when I joined the agency. I was a dedicated Cold Warrior, who felt the agency was out there fighting for liberty, justice, democracy and religion around the world. And I believed wholeheartedly in this. I just felt proud every day that I went to work, because I was out at the vanguard of the battle against the international evil empire, international communist evil empire.

    BILL MOYERS: [voice-over] Iran, 1953: the CIA mounted its first major covert operation to overthrow a foreign government. The target was the prime minister of Iran, Mohammed Mossadegh. He held power legitimately through his country’s parliamentary process, and he was popular. Washington had once looked to him as the man to prevent a communist takeover. But that was before Mossadegh decided that the Iranian state, not British companies, ought to own and control the oil within Iran’s own borders. When he nationalized the British-run oilfields, Washington saw red. Kennett Love was a young New York Times reporter in Teheran that summer.

    BILL MOYERS: [voice-over] This is the ultimate weapon of the secret government, the National Security Decision Directive, the NSDD. Every president since Harry Truman has issued them. They’re not published in any government register. Ronald Reagan has signed at least 280 such directives. They cover everything from outer space to nuclear weapons to covert operations in Iran and Nicaragua. In essence, by an arbitrary and secret decree, the president can issue himself a license to do as he will, where he will, and the only ones who need to know are the secret agents who carry it out, the Knights of the Oval Office.

    SCOTT ARMSTRONG, Executive Director, National Security Archive: The national security argument now interferes with every American’s right to understand its government. That’s what secrecy’s all about these days.]

    • robert e williamson jr
      January 24, 2023 at 11:44

      c , thank you for this! Thank you so much!

      This was on helluva expose’ Mr. Moyers & his crew engineered.

      I have remembered Bill Moyers statement in that last paragraph since Mr. Moyers said the quiet part out loud.

      He led the audience through the sordid tail of CIA escapades and growth and he was right, 100%! The depth and quality his work escaped my memory. Glad to see it and read it again.

      His last words here say it all.

      I recommend that anyone and everyone go to hxxps://

      You will be convinced once you watch this and read the transcript Bill was and is right and we see the proof daily, “A democracy cannot survive a secret arm of government.”

      As a nation we have three choices, do nothing and become totally subjugated by the authoritarian state or we can demand change, we can fight for our democracy or we can abandon ALL HOPE.

      Time for true patriots and truly exceptional Americans to rise to occasion.

  24. Valerie
    January 24, 2023 at 04:04

    “One final question: Who exposed the presence of classified material in Biden’s residence and private office?”

    Thankyou Mr. Lawrence. That was a question I asked myself too.

    And another which is puzzling me, is, WHY take these papers home and stuff them in your garage? (Who else had access to them; are they not noticed as missing; are there copies; etc. etc.)

    But you are right in saying anyone who has forgotten/didn’t know about such documents cannot be in a position of such responsibility.

  25. Allan Millard
    January 24, 2023 at 00:28

    Isn’t the kerfuffle nothing more than a sign of forgetfulness or senility?

      January 24, 2023 at 02:30

      Some of the documents date back to when he was vice president.

    • Selina Sweet
      January 24, 2023 at 12:36

      Would you keep on paying your secretary if she/he took a bunch a files home
      and then forgot them being there?

  26. Me Myself
    January 23, 2023 at 23:08

    Are these documents the only copies or originals? In other words, is he keeping them from being seen and used against him for some reason?

    • DavidH
      January 24, 2023 at 12:06

      Thanks for that question. Not informed on all this at all, but I’d guess the odds are less than 50% there aren’t copies on some kinda disk somewhere, or on some kinda contraption. If the paper’s the only place where the info exists, that would be amazing! [I say change out high frequency trading with paper] My tentative theory so far has been that, if any parties ever start digging up dirt on a dude, then at least the dude’s lawyers can research all the dirt, and develop alt accounts/versions, or justifications.

  27. TonyR
    January 23, 2023 at 21:23

    We talk about the MIC… The weapons contracts, the overseas “security” excursions… But think about the cost to continually maintain the security clearances for me the 1,000,000+ people in the u s. That have secret or higher clearances. They’re bending us over real good I tell ya… Every day in every way

  28. Afdal
    January 23, 2023 at 20:01

    Here’s a thought you won’t hear on the corporate media: why do documents deserve to be classified in the first place? I’m starting to think that the only people who actually care about hiding government activity from the public (“classified” documents) are ones with a government job to protect. These scandals about classified documents are largely manufactured by deep state spooks jockeying for power.

    • robert e williamson jr
      January 23, 2023 at 22:21

      Afdal you are so incredibly close to the entire truth here. You have the first part down to solid!

      Joey wasn’t much interested in hiding what was in these documents as he was interested in having them to C Y A, to cover his own ass. Hard to figure maybe, maybe, not what is clear is he felt comfortable doing it pre-Trumpism. Now not so much! He got a great lesson on why not to do this though.

      In the world where these issues are taken seriously anyone would tell you he developed a very dangerous habit in casually abandoning these materials, he lost track of them. Pretty unforgivable for a guy who has no compunctions about reminding everyone of his storied past.

      One side of the spectrum you have Trump, the other Joey. Same sort of malfeasance as the failures at the FBI with Trumps former FBI buddy and the FBI-NSA-CIA failures of 911.

      For the sake of dog – ma, you can’t make this up, these men are supposed to be professionals. So we have actual proof of this Dumbing – Down of these exceptional Americans. Sorta like the drug dealing Marines and the AWOL SEAL killed in the Ukraine. I mean I guess he was AWOL as was “reported”by MSM.

      You see Afdal the only people the Deep State needs to keep lying to, . . er a . . I mean keep secrets from are the Frogs who are currently in hot water up to their eyeballs.

      You ever hear of the John Fitzgerald Kennedy files and papers? See there how simple this is. You do understand Afdal that those at the top of the CIA do as they damned well please with their over-classified files. No one holds them accountable. What could go wrong?

      Thanks CN

      • Paula
        January 24, 2023 at 10:37

        A recent book concerning the watch JFK was wearing when assassinated implicates the VP at the time of the killing. Fascinating stuff and the watch owner paid dearly for having it in his possession: The Inheritance. Poisoned Fruit of JFK’s Assassination by Christopher and Michelle Fulton.

        • Selina Sweet
          January 24, 2023 at 12:58

          Pure gaul. Especially, the government’s killer instinct exercised
          against Assange for his truth telling. Against Biden’s – Oh Dear Me?!
          No Big Deal! Just a little slip up? Would you hire him for your
          dentist? I don’t get it. The American people – Blue or Red –
          doesn’t matter – would never hire Agent Chaos nor Biden given
          their mental statuses for any life and death matter to handle
          their personal concerns. It’s almost like the monied powers behind
          the throne think up perverse characters for the Presidency to thrust upon the people.
          When last did we have a genuine, bright human being for President
          who really gave a damn about justice, truth and the well being of the people?
          Why are people loco over our mass killer problem when the public political
          charade is carried out on never ceasing always expanding
          ethically slippery slopes? Sanity depends on trust. Which is always earned.

    • Eddie S
      January 24, 2023 at 09:25

      Afdal – yes, I agree about the ‘over- classification’ of documents by the US government. There have been articles written through the years expressing the same POV that most of the classification of documents is essentially done to protect government officials from their constituents, NOT to protect the US from external enemies, real/exaggerated/or imagined. Also some of it is just bureaucratic convenience — I still recall reading back in the 1970’s how some of the FBI’s dossiers on left-wingers would contain newspaper articles that had been stamped ’top secret’ before being put in the folder!

    • Black Cloud
      January 24, 2023 at 21:41

      Back in the day Dubya classified an IRS report that showed the 400 richest people paid something like 12% income tax.

      This had to be classified for national security.

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