Chronicling the wrecking of the US government

Author Michael Lewis talks about the Trump administration's 'wilful ignorance' of government as described in his book The Fifth Risk, and what it means for America.

Soon after he was elected President of the United States in November 2016, Mr Donald Trump fired the entire presidential transition team put together by then New Jersey governor Chris Christie.

The team was in the process of identifying the people who would occupy the top 500 jobs in the US government, including Cabinet positions - a practice every presidential nominee has followed. According to author Michael Lewis in his startling new book The Fifth Risk, at one point, Mr Trump turned to Mr Christie and said: "Chris, you and I are so smart that we can leave the victory party two hours early and do the transition ourselves."

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 27, 2019, with the headline 'Chronicling the wrecking of the US government'. Subscribe