Trump selects cabinet in face of liberal hysteria
BY MAGGIE TROWE
As President-elect Donald Trump put together a cabinet that looks a lot like those installed by previous Republican presidents like Dwight D. Eisenhower, a hysterical six-week liberal-left frenzy that dreamed of robbing him of the presidency through an Electoral College coup fell flat. From the pages of the Washington Post to the Communist Party’s online People’s World, editorial writers mislabeled Trump a fascist.
The “Vote Trump Out” campaign aimed at the Electoral College focused on charges that Trump is soft on Russian President Vladimir Putin and that Moscow hackers helped throw the election. Many Republican electors were flooded with letters, some threatening, urging them not to vote for Trump.
Jill Stein, who ran as Green Party candidate for president, acted as a shill for Hillary Clinton and went to court in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, demanding recounts. Perhaps she felt guilty for running in the first place. In Michigan, Stein was credited with 51,463 votes, while Trump won by 10,704. But her meritless lawsuits were unceremoniously thrown out.
President Barack Obama took the wind out of the “Block Trump” campaign Dec. 16, defending “the integrity of our election system” and denying ballots weren’t fairly counted. Obama pledged to make Trump’s transition to the White House as smooth as possible.
Trump won handily Dec. 19. Two Trump electors and five of Clinton’s changed their votes.
The howl continues. “Congratulations, Trump. Welcome to hell,” headlined an op-ed in the Washington Post Dec. 21. It signals continuing Democratic Party efforts to bog down the new administration and prevent it from conducting business.
Hillary Clinton continues to blame her defeat on a Russian conspiracy. “Vladimir Putin himself directed the covert cyber attacks against our electoral system, against our democracy, apparently because he has a personal beef against me,” she said Dec. 16.
Moscow, like most capitalist regimes, tries to take advantage of every opportunity to try to influence its rivals. But Washington, with its vast bipartisan history of orchestrating regime change in Cuba, Haiti, Guatemala, Libya, Angola, Iraq, Congo, Indonesia, Vietnam and Iran, to name a few, has no standing to complain.
The anti-working-class record of Bill Clinton’s administrations, her conduct as secretary of state, and her campaign, which oozed contempt for workers, especially those who are Caucasian, were more than enough to torpedo her presidential prospects. Hillary Clinton was one of the most distrusted and unpopular candidates in modern history.
She convinced many workers that Trump was the lesser evil when she called his supporters “deplorables” and “irredeemable.”
Union officials and others backing the Democratic Party are attacking Trump’s cabinet nominations, accusing him of preparing an unprecedented assault on unions, women’s rights, immigrant workers and gays. Many zero in on Trump’s nomination of Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson for secretary of state, saying it’s a conflict for an executive of a big company to represent the government.
But the appointees of both capitalist parties always represent the interests of the propertied ruling-class families who hold state power. Wealthy banker and investor Joseph Kennedy was just one of many big capitalists in Franklin Roosevelt’s cabinet. Ford Motor President Robert McNamara was secretary of defense under John Kennedy. And Eisenhower had a twofer, with brothers John Foster Dulles and Allen Dulles, both partners in the international law firm Sullivan & Cromwell, dedicated to defending the interests of U.S. big business throughout the world, as secretary of state and director of the CIA respectively.
Trump will preside over a pro-business administration. Despite Democratic charges that he will provoke a trade war against China, his nomination of Terry Branstad, governor of agricultural powerhouse Iowa and a longtime friend of Chinese President Xi Jinping, to be ambassador to China, points to growing Sino-U.S. trade.
Democrats claim to be the party of peace, labor and “identity politics,” a focus on women, gays and other minorities; but their administrations, rife with “brights” and “experts,” are responsible for imposing some of the most onerous ceilings on our rights.
The 1973 Roe v. Wade decision brought to an end growing street mobilizations for the right to choose abortion as equal protection for women in making decisions about their bodies. These mobilizations were transforming public sentiment, winning millions to see the rights of women in a new light.
Instead, the Harvard and Yale-trained Supreme Court justices based a more limited right to abortion on women’s doctors’ judgments and medical questions like fetal viability. This, coupled with the refusal of pro-Democrat leaders of the National Organization for Women and other groups to mobilize to defend the right to choose — motivated by the desire not to rock the boat and cost Democratic office holders their jobs — opened the way for more than four decades of erosion of abortion rights.
William Clinton led both parties to “end welfare as we know it” in the 1990s, making the future for jobless female workers with children a nightmare as the economic crisis deepened and jobs disappeared.
And Obamacare was designed to block the road to universal health care and to guarantee superprofits for the insurance cartels as health care for working people deteriorates.
Democrats encourage working people, who they fear and view as stupid, to vote for them and rely on their executive action, bureaucratic regulation and court rulings. But defending and extending labor and social gains can only be achieved in struggle in the streets on the road to workers taking state power.
Trump is no more capable of enacting policies to end the crisis of the capitalist economy than was Obama. There are no “policies” that can do so. The infrastructure jobs program he talks of “is more about rewarding private-equity investors than about rebuilding America’s crumbling infrastructure,” wrote Princeton economics professors Alan Blinder and Alan Krueger in the Wall Street Journal Dec. 18.