Columns » Hightower

Trump has filled his government with swamp creatures



The swamp is as full as ever. - KARL_SONNENBERG / SHUTTERSTOCK.COM
  • Karl_Sonnenberg /
  • The swamp is as full as ever.
Bragging that “We’re draining the swamp,” Donald Trump declared victory in June over “the unholy alliance of lobbyists and donors and special interests who made a living bleeding our country dry.” Bravo!

But wait … where did all those swamp critters go? Right into Trump’s corporate-cozy administration, where they continue serving the unholy alliance that’s bleeding our country dry.

Trump’s government has consistently sided with corporations over workers, the environment, consumers and the common good, because corporate executives and lobbyists have become Trump’s government. His Interior secretary was an oil lobbyist, his Treasury chief came straight from Wall Street, his Environmental Protection Agency honcho lobbied for Big Coal, his health department is headed by a drug company executive… and on down the line to undersecretaries, bureau directors, etc., etc.

About the grossest example of Trump Inc. is the Education Department, headed by billionaire heiress, Betsy DeVos. She’s turned the department into a handmaiden for the corrupt for-profit college industry, which has ripped off millions of students (and billions of our tax dollars). DeVos has twisted law and logic to try to bail out and resurrect the Wall Street-backed for-profit educational system. Her investors-first perversion of public education’s mission, backed by her political patron Trump, has brought great cheer to the corporate chieftains running these scams. A lawyer for the profiteers even penned an ode [sung to the tune of Randy Newman’s “You’ve Got a Friend in Me”; read more here] to The Donald, hailing him as the savior of this sleazy industry:

“We’ve got a friend in Trump
He’s lifting us out of our slump
We were down — and life was rough
Too many regs, were way too tough
After so many years
We’d just had enough, but
Now we’ve got a friend in Trump.”

As Lily Tomlin once put it, “No matter how cynical you get, it’s almost impossible to keep up.”

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