What do Trump cabinet choices portend?

It’s easy to get into a pessimistic, even cynical state of mind and heart when we see the backgrounds of people that Trump is choosing for his cabinet and other positions of note.

However, I would echo Paul Craig Roberts, an insider from way back who knows how the wheels of government work, that we need to let Trump do what he feels he must do now to get the dynamics in place for the changes he promises to make — especially in terms of realigning foreign policy and getting rid of all trade agreements that bleed off American jobs to foreign countries.

Remember that Trump is a neophyte, a businessman. He has no idea what he’s doing as the incoming “U.S. President,” and is faced with an impossibly steep learning curve as he attempts to harness the intricacies of a massive, cumbersome, self-seeking  bureaucracy enough to move the “ship of state” even one degree off its usual course. What else can he do but call on insiders to help him?

And, as Roberts says: give Trump six months. And then turn on the heat if he’s not beginning to live up to his promises.

Meanwhile, to help us remember what he’s up against, here’s an excerpt from Bureaucracy: The Glob that Fails.

My first fearless prediction for December 2016 is that the president-elect will declare his or her intention to “slash” the size of the White House staff. My second prediction is that he or she will fail, despite elaborate efforts to redefine positions as short-term loans from various departments, etc. Newly appointed senior staffers probably will find the handbook for such devices left by their predecessors.

The public also will hear, well before November 2016, pledges to cut regulation and red tape. These too will fail, largely because every regulation and piece of red tape has its own constituency in industry, in established departments or in the Congress. At the macro level, everyone wants to “reduce waste.” At the micro level, however, most players in the game have pieces of tape that benefit them or their organization. Thus another prediction: the number of pages added to the Federal Register in the next administration will exceed the number of pages added during President Obama’s terms.

 

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