It’s time for everyone to drop the word “reform” as applied to Trump administration policy changes. The right word can be chosen from the following: rip-off, scam, cheat, fraud or theft.

The tax bill enacted by the Republicans rewards the party’s big-league donors. It’s no reform. It’s trickle down economics at best and a national debt buster and excuse for draconian austerity at worst. A regressive tax policy which necessitates massive cuts to programs assisting the middle class and the poor is not a reform. It’s a cheat. And the tax plan includes deductions for closing a plant and moving it out of the United States. America First indeed!

Policies that undercut the job protections of working Americans are dangerous and unfair. Health and safety regulations are being weakened. Wage and hour rules are not being enforced. Job site health and safety violations are unreported and job site inspections are more infrequent. But those tax cuts for the richest Americans and corporations have to be paid for somehow, don’t they?
The Trump Administration weakened the Department of Labor and the National Labor Relations Board by cutting staff and placing anti-worker, anti-Union reactionaries in key positions. One example of their anti-worker animus is a proposal to place tip income at the disposal of employers.

The same rotten rationale of promoting the self-interest of the greediest explains these regressive policies. Undermining the national parks system. Selling off public land. Opening up vast reaches of land and sea to petroleum drilling and exploitation. Forbidding discussion of climate change. Failing to properly address natural disaster. Deregulating restrictions on toxins affecting workplaces, air and water.

These changes are noxious and dangerous on many levels. They are not reforms. They are an attack on the infrastructure of American life that has made our country a beacon to the rest of the world. The light in that beacon is dimming. We are being ripped off.

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