Predictably, President Obama has done nothing significant to diminish the National Security State. He presided over its expansion. Why should he want to undo it?

It’s a big mistake, however, in understanding the National Security State (NSS) and what to do about it to focus on Obama. The issue concerning the NSS is much deeper than one man, one president and a few terms of office.

Once we understand the NSS, we will see that it will only disappear in two cases. Either it falls when the American Empire falls, or it falls if Americans fundamentally rethink and change their entire government.

What is the NSS? We are offered this definition from the Oxford Dictionary of the US Military:

“A post-World War II state in which nearly all aspects of political, economic, intellectual, and social life are dominated by considerations of national defense and the drive to maintain a defense establishment capable of protecting the state against all comers.”

What this means is that the state’s organizations across all spheres (economic, political, social) are justified by and geared toward its overriding objective, which is security. The dominating forces will be both government and social institutions and pressures.

This in turn means that the country necessarily becomes more and more totalitarian in its quest to achieve its objective. In other words, we arrive at this definition, which is mine:

The National Security State (NSS) is a totalitarian state in which national security (or national defense) is the overriding aim and all aspects of society and government are organized to achieve that aim.

Dangerous Organizations of the National Security State, 1/20/14

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