In 2016, Donald Trump ran and was elected for US president with promises to “Make America Great Again”. He will be the first to tell you that this is exactly what he is doing – but does that truly reflect what has taken place during his first few years in the White House? 

A master manipulator of the media and brand marketing, Trump is an expert at portraying himself in a certain light, while getting the media to do the same. 

However, upon closer examination, the “golden” radiance seems to be much less pristine. For a man who has deemed himself the voice of the “forgotten man and woman,” it seems Trump has forgotten to include many “common folk” in his administrative selections. 

Packing his team with Wall Street tycoons, war hawks, neocons, and American Imperialists doesn’t bode well for someone who claims only to be interested in “draining the swamp” (as he so often puts it). While campaigning at his rallies in 2016, Trump championed the middle-class, rallying them against the “elites” of D.C. and Wall Street, even comparing his trade policies to those of Democratic rival Bernie Sanders. 

Viewed as the “anti-establishment” candidate, Trump picked fights with more conventional members of his party, and urged-on supporters during raucous chants that took aim at the likes of his enemies, both outside of and within the party he hoped to lead. Ironically, however, there still remains plenty of “establishment” to be found within the Trump administration.

You won’t have to look long or hard to discover the name “Goldman Sachs” as the former employer for numerous Trump cabinet members, one of which is Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin. Mnuchin has demanded strict taxation and regulation authority over decentralized crypto-currencies like Bitcoin, trampling on personal privacy rights and laying claim to a monetary form that the US government (not the Treasury nor IRS) failed to have any role whatsoever in either creating or issuing. 

Next, there is the case of Gary Cohn, whom Trump picked as head of his National Economic Council, and had, incidentally, previously served as President for the very Wall Street behemoth at issue: Goldman Sachs. For a man so often portrayed as the “populist candidate” during the 2016 election cycle, it’s quite perplexing to juxtapose such a designation against an economic cabinet overflowing with Wall Street henchmen.

Trump has also included several members of his military brass who are all-too-happy to beat the war drums in the name of “freedom” – as long as it results in more government funds directed towards military contractors and corporate manufacturers, of course. 

Currently serving National Security Advisor John R. Bolton is infamous for pushing to expand the American war machine across the globe, strongly supporting both the Iraq War efforts as well as the disastrous invasion of Libya that sought to topple Gaddafi and left a trail of bloodshed and terror in its wake. Perhaps during the 2020 election campaign, Trump could explain to his voters and the American public how placing people in positions of power with such horrid track-records helps keep the common American “forgotten” man and woman at the forefront of his agenda. 

However, it is far more likely Trump will simply point his fingers at the peering cameras amidst fervent and relentless chants to trample any who dare oppose his tyrannical reign, and deflect attention away from his “swampy” staff-members by crying “fake news” as he so often does.

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