Trump's Incompetence

This may be the most disturbing article I've read about the utter incompetence of the Trump presidency, and why that, more than anything he actually wants to do, might be the biggest risk of all.

Allegedly, between the election and the inauguration not a single Trump representative set foot inside the Department of Agriculture, for example. The Department of Agriculture has employees or contractors in every county in the United States, and the Trump people seemed simply to be ignoring the place. Where they did turn up inside the federal government, they appeared confused and unprepared.
By the time I arrived the first eighth of Trump’s first term was nearly complete, and his administration was still, largely, missing. He hadn’t nominated anyone to serve as head of the Patent Office, for instance, or to run FEMA. There was no Trump candidate to head the T.S.A., or anyone to run the Centers for Disease Control. The 2020 national census will be a massive undertaking for which there is not a moment to lose and yet there’s no Trump appointee in place to run it. “The actual government has not really taken over,” says Max Stier. “It’s kindergarten soccer. Everyone is on the ball. No one is at their positions. But I doubt Trump sees the reality. Everywhere he goes everything is going to be hunky-dory and nice. No one gives him the bad news.”
The safety of the electrical grid sat at or near the top of the list of concerns of everyone I spoke with inside the D.O.E. Life in America has become, increasingly, reliant on it. “Food and water has become food and water and electricity,” as one D.O.E. career staffer put it. Back in 2013 there had been an incident in California that got everyone’s attention. Late one night, just southeast of San Jose, at Pacific Gas and Electric’s Metcalf substation, a well-informed sniper, using a .30-caliber rifle, had taken out 17 transformers. Someone had also cut the cables that enabled communication to and from the substation. “They knew exactly what lines to cut,” said Tarak Shah, who studied the incident for the D.O.E. “They knew exactly where to shoot. They knew exactly which manhole covers were relevant—where the communication lines were. These were feeder stations to Apple and Google.” There had been enough backup power in the area that no one noticed the outage, and the incident came and went quickly from the news. But, Shah said, “for us it was a wake-up call.”
Most [risks] are like bombs with very long fuses that, in the distant future, when the fuse reaches the bomb, might or might not explode. It is delaying repairs to a tunnel filled with lethal waste until, one day, it collapses. It is the aging workforce of the D.O.E.—which is no longer attracting young people as it once did—that one day loses track of a nuclear bomb. It is the ceding of technical and scientific leadership to China. It is the innovation that never occurs, and the knowledge that is never created, because you have ceased to lay the groundwork for it. It is what you never learned that might have saved you.

More from the great Michael Lewis at Vanity Fair here