U.S. President-elect Donald J. Trump and team are putting a Cabinet together, and have indicated other appointments they’d like to make. I think that the visual here might be scattered pages of Ikea assembly instructions, together with some poorly fitting tools.
As a Canadian, I didn’t have a vote, but as a citizen of the world I do have an opinion: I think that Americans should be very concerned with the team thus far. Political ideologies aside, the choices are either directly from the deepest part of the Washington swamp that Trump promised to drain, or so far outside of mainstream, as to be frightening.
Vice President: Indiana Governor Mike Pence. A Grand Old Party deep insider, a champion of gay conversion therapy (pun unintentional) and God knows what other forms of torture. A true gun-loving, woman hating, DC insider, Pence will reign as “head of the other swamp-people”, that will keep Trump more or less impeachment-resistant, since folks should actually be MORE concerned about Pence becoming President, rather than Trump. A redeeming fact I have read about Governor Pence is that he voted for Jimmy Carter in 1980. Whaaaat??!
Chief of Staff: Reince Priebus — champion of climate change denial, and about as much an insider of Washington as they come (former RNC general counsel, and current Chair of the RNC), making him pretty much a “prince regent of the swamp”.
Chief White House Strategist: Trump Campaign CEO Steve Bannon (ex head of Brietbart News, champion mouthpiece of the “alt-right”. If you’re thinking “hand guns for all the white folk”, and “round those uppity brown folks up, and send ‘em home”, then this is your poster boy.
Attorney General: the racist and bigoted Alabama Senator, Jeff Sessions. See Alternet’s 12 reasons why he should never be US Attorney General.
Housing and Urban Development Secretary: Dr. Ben Carson. I mean, did you hear him speak during the Republican leadership debates?! His primary qualification is that he grew up in a house.
Health and Human Services Secretary: Georgia Congressman Tom Price – former orthopaedic surgeon and stanch opposer to the Affordable Health Care Act, and main guy in the pocket of Health Insurance lobbyists. Swampy.
Transportation Secretary: Former Labor Secretary for George W. Bush, Elaine Chao – and ALSO the wife of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. Her appointment would stink of nepotism, and swamp.
Education Secretary: Betsy DeVos. Someone who wants to see taxpayer dollars funnelled into unregulated private and parochial schools. At risk, is the paltry 15 billion that the US Federal Government earmarks nationally, primarily for kids in poverty to have access to primary and secondary education. Ironically, her organization “All Children Matter” blocks eligibility for funding of students with disabilities.
Treasury Secretary: Steven Mnuchin – former Goldman Sachs executive, who should be in jail with the rest of the big bank mob for their part in the US bank mortgage scandal 7 years ago. I wouldn’t give this guy my wallet to hold onto.
Commerce Secretary: Wilbur Ross – Billionaire investor – known as “the king of bankruptcy” for his restructuring of failing industries (including some of Trump’s own “most excellent ventures”).
Head of the CIA: Kansas Rep. Mike Pompeo, a lover of torture, and hater of brown people.
National Security Advisor: Retired Lt. Gen Michael Flynn, who ties China to Jihadists. I kid you not.
Defence Secretary: Retired General James Mattis. Known as “Mad Dog Mattis,” the General was credited with a string of colorful quotes over the years, including: “Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everybody you meet.”
Yet to be determined:
Secretary of State: Possibly Mitt Romney. Really? This is the only better choice than John Bolton’s moustache??? Both really hate the rest of the world. I mean, REALLY hate the rest of the world. Also in the running is retired Army Gen. David Petraeus, who was disgraced after sharing classified files with his mistress, umm, er, biographer.
There’s a list of other positions, that no doubt will be filled by ideologically-ironic folk. Think of who they might appoint to “Environmental Protection Agency Administrator”, “Secretary of the Interior”, “Office of Management and Budget Director”, or “United States Trade Representative”, to name a few. Hey, Sarah Palin‘s not doing anything! Perhaps Yosemite Sam could be coaxed from retirement? How about tapping Dr. Michael Savage, self professed architect of the Trump for President playbook?
Then finally, there’s Homeland Security Secretary: possibly sheriff David Clark. Follow this link for a wide-eyed opinion about this particular hot mess of a human being.