In writing about Carrier's crony capitalism, Bernie Sanders explains that corporations have figured out how to roll Trump:
In exchange for allowing United Technologies to continue to offshore more than 1,000 jobs, Trump will reportedly give the company tax and regulatory favors that the corporation has sought. Just a short few months ago, Trump was pledging to force United Technologies to "pay a damn tax." He was insisting on very steep tariffs for companies like Carrier that left the United States and wanted to sell their foreign-made products back in the United States. Instead of a damn tax, the company will be rewarded with a damn tax cut. Wow! How's that for standing up to corporate greed? How's that for punishing corporations that shut down in the United States and move abroad?
In essence, United Technologies took Trump hostage and won. And that should send a shock wave of fear through all workers across the country.
He continues by reminding us that "I said I would work with Trump if he was serious about the promises he made to members of the working class:"
But after running a campaign pledging to be tough on corporate America, Trump has hypocritically decided to do the exact opposite. He wants to treat corporate irresponsibility with kid gloves. The problem with our rigged economy is not that our policies have been too tough on corporations; it's that we haven't been tough enough.
In an assessment that should surprise no one, Nicholas Napier pegs Trump's picks as comprising the richest cabinet in history:
Remember when President-elect Trump attracted working class voters by promising to "Drain the Swamp" of establishment politicians and wealthy Wall Street bankers?
As evidenced by Trump's picks, he's convinced that a cabinet full of billionaires will know what's best for a country where the average household earns $52,250 per year.
The three billionaires identified include Betsy DeVos (Secretary of Education), Wilbur Ross (Secretary of Commerce), and Todd Ricketts (Deputy Secretary of Commerce). Napier continues:
Trump rewarded his wealthy contributors with positions of power, and he isn't the first. However, for a campaign that was run touting the needs of the uneducated working class, it's hard to believe that a team comprised of the wealthiest people ever to work in government will have his voters' best interest in mind.
Over at Crooks and Liars, shelleyp asks, how much damage can they do?
If we were to search for the absolute best leaders for the different cabinet positions in the White House, we'd find Trump's picks directly opposite them. A cabinet leader should support the mission of his or her cabinet, and seek to ensure it operates to the best of its ability. Trump's picks have been, almost universally and vehemently, opposed to both the work and the premise of the organizations they've been picked to lead.
In the Department of the Interior, requirements related to resource allocation can be relaxed. This could lead to more coal, gas, and oil leases, trees cut for timber, more acreage for cattle grazing permits, not to mention opening up mining where it was previously disallowed on public land.
Enforcement of existing water and air regulations can be discouraged, to allow more agricultural and industrial pollution. Fewer endangered species will make it to the lists, and to the protection they need.
She sees hope in a rather unusual place:
What will be the primary saving grace from the destruction these ill-equipped, fanatical leaders can bring?
Federal departments and agencies are large, with big budgets, and considerable responsibility. How the organization operate is guided by procedures and rules that have been in place for decades, if not centuries. For the government to function, it can't go through a complete upheaval every four years. It can't be completely undermined by an incapable President and his ill-considered choices. Bureaucracy is the basis for maintaining a functioning government.
Most of Trump's picks are inexperienced, and ill-equipped for their jobs. Meanwhile, the work in the federal agencies and departments is done by career employees, who understand what they need to do to keep things running and fulfill the obligations of their job. Though these employees can be severely hindered in what they do, especially with budget cuts, they're also capable of slowing, or even stopping, permanent harm.
It's not an inspiring call to arms, but it may well mitigate the damage.