The Trump administration isn’t really running the government, but they are trying to keep their eyes on it:

The political appointee charged with keeping watch over Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt and his aides has offered unsolicited advice so often that after just four weeks on the job, Pruitt has shut him out of many staff meetings, according to two senior administration officials.

At the Pentagon, they’re privately calling the former Marine officer and fighter pilot who’s supposed to keep his eye on Defense Secretary Jim Mattis “the commissar,” according to a high-ranking defense official with knowledge of the situation. It’s a reference to Soviet-era Communist Party officials who were assigned to military units to ensure their commanders remained loyal.

Most members of President Trump’s Cabinet do not yet have leadership teams in place or even nominees for top deputies. But they do have an influential coterie of senior aides installed by the White House who are charged — above all — with monitoring the secretaries’ loyalty, according to eight officials in and outside the administration.

This shadow government of political appointees with the title of senior White House adviser is embedded at every Cabinet agency, with offices in or just outside the secretary’s suite. The White House has installed at least 16 of the advisers at departments including Energy and Health and Human Services and at some smaller agencies such as NASA, according to records first obtained by ProPublica through a Freedom of Information Act request.

These aides report not to the secretary, but to Rick Dearborn, the White House deputy chief of staff for policy, according to administration officials. A top Dearborn aide, John Mashburn, leads a weekly conference call with the advisers, who are in constant contact with the White House.

I won’t belabor the point, as long as you get the point:

History doesn’t repeat itself, but it rhymes. In this case, the NSDAP is basically a grouping of folks around Wilhelm Frick Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III and Steve Bannon. Rick Dearborn, who manages these Dienstleiters, served as the chief of staff for Senator Sessions from December 2004 until 2016. As they pursue this Daseinkampf and Gleichschaltung of our government, our civil servants will have to decide where their breaking point is. Do they stay and fight, or do they resign on principle?

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