The book is an extremely timely home run. A must-read – and preferably before you vote. The book in question is The Memo: 20 Years Inside the Deep State Fighting For America First.
The author is Rich Higgins. Rich, whom I have been privileged to interview, has had a 20-year career inside the inside of the Deep State. When Donald Trump won the presidency and moved into the White House Rich realized long before anyone else that there was a Deep State move instantly afoot to, as his book says, “stop and ultimately remove the President from office.”
Rich Higgins is not shy. His background included stints in the army and at the Pentagon. By the dawn of the Trump presidency in January of 2017 Rich was stationed in the White House as a staffer on the National Security Council.
In an act of boldness – make that sheer gutsiness – Rich Higgins proceeds to set his concerns down in the form of a memo – The Memo. The title: POTUS and Political Warfare. (Note: Inside the White House in any administration, the word “POTUS” is the shorthand for “President of the United States.”)
The memo began this way:
“The Trump Administration is suffering under withering information campaigns designed to first undermine, then delegitimize and ultimately remove the President…”
The question is, of course, why? Donald Trump was the 44th person to occupy the presidential office. (President Grover Cleveland served two non-consecutive terms in the late 1800s and is thus counted twice, making Trump the 45th president.) This problem of Washington bureaucrats in secret revolt to try and sabotage and bring down a president had never been seen before other than in the world of political novels and Hollywood movies. So why now this covert plotting and scheming and undermining?
Higgins identifies the reason immediately:
“The President had campaigned on an unambiguous agenda of change. The basics included staying out of Syria, defeating ISIS, pulling out of Afghanistan, confronting China, enforcing our borders, rebuilding our economy, and…well, Making America Great Again. Reversing, in other words, the policies of the last twenty and more – years that had brought the nation to its dangerous state and which the President had promised to reverse.”
What is so startling about this story is that American history is filled with examples of presidents who were elected to reverse or change the agenda of their predecessor. Andrew Jackson set about reversing the policies of his predecessor, John Quincy Adams. Lincoln set his sights on undoing the work of James Buchanan. FDR was no fan of Herbert Hoover’s presidency. And as a former Reagan White House staffer myself, I can testify that the Reagan presidency began by reversing the policies of predecessor Jimmy Carter.
So what was the big deal?
The big deal here is that after over a quarter-century of Washington Establishment presidencies – the 28 years of the George H.W.Bush, Bill Clinton, George W.Bush and Barack Obama presidencies – the bipartisan Establishments that ran both parties were determined to maintain the status quo. They were, to a person, Washington Insiders – something Donald Trump decidedly was not.
Thus they saw Trump and his personality, not to mention his Outsider status, as a threat to every policy they had implemented – not to mention to their way of life if not their jobs.
What Rich Higgins details here is just how this game was played. So concerned was he by what he was seeing at work “within the walls” of the Trump White House that in May of 2017 he sat down and “put what I know to be the truth into the form of a memo.” He addressed it to “those colleagues who had been close to the President during the campaign.”
Of course, as Higgins details, when The Memo was eventually seen by H.R. McMaster, the seriously Washington Establishment National Security Adviser to the President, Higgins was summoned to the NSC’s Office of Legal Counsel.
He was asked:
“Did I write this memo?”
Answer: “Yes. Of course.”
And with that, Rich Higgins’ 20-year tour of duty in the Deep State abruptly ended. Literally escorted from the White House with his belongings tossed in a seedy government-issue green polyester shopping bag.
To understand what has been going on inside the Trump presidency, not to mention to get a close-up view of what is clearly a very, very serious threat to the American people’s right to choose their presidents and the policies they want followed?
Rich Higgins’ The Memo is the book to read for two reasons.
The first reason is to understand what is at stake in the 2020 election in the Trump-Biden showdown.
Which is to say Reason One is the showdown between the American people – the “deplorables” in Hillary Clinton’s phrase – and the Washington Establishment of insiders and bureaucrats who believe they, not the American people, have the right to run America.
Reason Two is that no matter the result of the 2020 election – the problem Rich Higgins details is not going to go away. If Donald Trump vanished from the face of the earth tomorrow, this problem of who runs America is going to go on.
And it must – must – be dealt with.
The place to start dealing with it is to read The Memo.