Trump initiates a political inquisition; the GOP attacks America’s most important social programs

If the Republicans do exactly what they are threatening to do, instead of working to solve America’s most critical problems, then they will be laying the groundwork for their political extinction.


Even though he has yet to enter the Oval Office it appears that President-elect Donald Trump is already showing clear signs of how he intends to conduct his presidency. Let’s call what we are currently seeing under Trump’s direction the initiation of his agenda of intimidation, i.e., a political inquisition.

Additionally, the GOP and, especially Paul Ryan, are making it clear that they want to repeal Obamacare as quickly as possible even though they have no plan of any kind to provide medical coverage to the many millions of Americans who are now enrolled in it. And this is just the start of the coming GOP attacks on important American social programs.

The Inquisition Begins

Trump’s first act under this political inquisition began when his transition team requested the Energy Dept. to furnish it with a list of the names of that department’s employees who were engaged in work related to the issue of climate change.

This from the Washington Post: “Donald Trump’s transition team has issued a list of 74 questions to the Energy Department, asking agency officials to identify which employees and contractors have worked on forging an international climate pact as well as domestic efforts to cut the nation’s carbon output.”

As the Post pointed out, “Trump and his team have vowed to dismantle specific aspects of Obama’s climate policies, and Trump has questioned the reality of climate change.” After that request was received and reviewed by officials of the Energy Dept. they replied that, though the department would cooperate with the new administration, it would not furnish the names of the individuals doing this work.

Then this transition team directed another email to the State Dept. asking for it to furnish a list of individuals who are working on anti-extremism programs. It said, “Please indicate names of people serving in those roles and status (political or career).” The very ominous part of that request has to do with asking about these employees’ career status.

A similar request was also made of the Dept. of Homeland Security which operates within the jurisdiction of the State Department. The request was made because Homeland Security handles threats posed by foreign extremists and terrorist groups such as ISIS.

One of the next targets of this administration will be the Consumer Protection Agency, created through the efforts of Sen. Elizabeth Warren, and which has the responsibility of taking actions against companies violating consumer financial laws, including engaging in unfair, deceptive, or abusive acts or practices. This is the agency that recently fined Wells Fargo $100 million for the widespread illegal practice of secretly opening unauthorized deposit and credit card accounts.

Trump has promised to dismantle this agency and the question is why in the world would he want to tear down an agency that guards against companies doing things that hurt the American people financially? The answer is that he is going to do anything he can to advance the interests of the Corporatists of America.

So this is how his Political Inquisition has begun and we, no doubt, are soon going to see which government agencies are his next targets.

Let’s turn to a different subject, but one that is also another good example of how Trump is already going in all the wrong directions. Recently he made these Twitter comments about nuclear weapons; “The United States must greatly strengthen and expand its nuclear capability until such time as the world comes to its senses regarding nukes.” Well as soon as that message about increasing America’s already huge arsenal of these weapons of mass destruction hit the news alarms should have sounded across this entire nation.

What exactly does he mean when he says, “until such time as the world comes to its senses regarding nukes?” Except for North Korea’s constant threats about using nuclear weapons against America and other nations, which of the current nuclear powers in the world have lost their senses about these weapons of mass destruction?

In fact, the danger of some nation using those monstrous weapons has been lessened somewhat in recent times when the Obama administration, together with Russia and several other countries, concluded an important agreement with Iran so that country would not move ahead with a program to develop nuclear weapons. So what is Trump talking about?

Trump’s friend Putin announced that “Moscow must “strengthen the military potential of strategic nuclear forces, especially with missile complexes that can reliably penetrate any existing and prospective missile defense systems.” Right now out of the 9 nations that possess nuclear weapons only three, the U.S., Russia and North Korea are the ones that should “come to their senses” and stop talking about ways that would even increase this threat.

What might Trump do when he becomes president and has the capability of launching an attack using nukes? Here’s a critically important question: does a U.S. president have the authority to launch a nuclear attack without proper justification?

Here’s an article that partly answers that question by stating that there are safeguards built into the nuclear code system that would prevent that from happening because of the sequence of launch attack procedures. But the danger is that some of those who would help make the final decisions on such a grave matter may be of the very same mindset as Trump.

This article lists the nine countries that currently possess nuclear weapons. While the stats on the number per country are from 2014 they remain basically the same. Out of the world’s total of 16,300 the U.S. and Russia have a combined total of some 15.300 or nearly 95% of that total. They have enough to destroy the world many times over but, apparently that’s not good enough.

Let me leave you with these two thoughts about Trump, who currently controls the Washington asylum and the Republican Party, aka, the agents of obstruction whose next idea on how to solve this country’s most pressing problems and make things better for the American people would be their first.

First Trump: if he throws his many millions of supporters, who were the reason why he was elected, those extremely angry and frustrated Americans who were thirsty for the kind of change he promised, under the bus and reneges on his phony agenda of change, they will go after him hammer and tong; and this real estate genius, who knows little to nothing about governmental and world affairs, will have to think deeply about returning to his real estate empire.

Is that an accurate assessment of Trump at this point in time? You bet it is because it didn’t take him long to show what he’s really about; that is, taking care of the richest Americans and his many very powerful associates in the corporate world. It looks like he is on a path that will greatly increase the inequality that already exists between the very richest Americans and the very large portion of Americans who are struggling to make ends meet.

Now let’s turn to the Republican Party that control the entire Congress but, whether it knows it or not, could be traveling down direct path of self-destruction. These destructionists, by nature, are intent on launching attacks on this country’s most important social programs that are of great importance to the American people; Social Security, Obamacare, Medicare, and Medicaid in particular. They want to privatize, water down, or even dismantle these programs instead of addressing their problem areas and strengthening them.

These planned attacks that adversely impact the lives of so many Americans are the reason why I call this party, based on the twisted mindsets of so many of its members, the Sociopath Party of America.

If the Republicans do exactly what they are threatening to do, instead of working to solve America’s most critical problems, then they will be laying the groundwork for their political extinction. The American people, including those zealous Trump supporters, when they fully realize what Trump and the Republican Party are going to do to this country, will finally arrive at the point where they will have had far more than they can take and we could well see a societal uprising like no other in this nation’s history.


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Michael Payne is an independent progressive activist. His writings deal with social, economic, political and foreign policy issues; and especially with the great dangers involved with the proliferation of perpetual war, the associated defense industry, and the massive control that Corporate America holds over this government and our election process; all which are leading this nation down the road to eventual financial ruin if the conditions are not reversed. He is a graduate of Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois and a U.S. Army veteran.