The way our government is run is changing since Donald Trump was elected president, in many ways -- many of them small ways -- that are adding up to a dramatic, qualitative transformation. Amy Siskind, a former Wall Street exec and current political advocate, has been keeping a list, which can be found here. It's extensive. Of course, every president makes many changes. But are the changes under President Trump different from those that have been made under previous administrations? Do they add up to something that makes a qualitative change in this country's principles? Do they spill over from government administration to a change in the culture of the country? I think they do, or at least, that they are in the process of doing that. 

Looking at what is happening in a simpler way, I think you can see the Trump administration as a retrenchment on almost all fronts — a big step backward, to embrace attitudes and policies of the past. But that is the optimistic view. The pessimistic view is that the chipping away of liberties, the movement backward on health care and immigration and protection of the environment and freedom of the press, the nepotism and ethical laxness, is leading up to much larger, much worse measures that will dramatically restrict individual liberties and enlarge the power of the president. That is Siskind's view, I think, and the view of others with expertise in autocratic regimes who see the Trump presidency so far as the beginnings of a shift toward autocracy.

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