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  • On the campaign trail in the final days of the 2016 election, I worked my way toward the candidate for a few informal words. Passing through three levels of Secret Service security, I waived my DT badge to get through the Trump media vetting. Finally, I got to speak to Mr. Trump.

    “How's my hair?” he asked his personal assistant.

    With a small crowd around him and a mass of the Trump faithful assembled in front of us, I took my shot. “Mr. Trump, one last question: If elected, what will you do to shake up the government?”

    Donald Trump looked directly at me, paused, and said, “Shake up? I'm going to break up the government! And what's with this 'If' stuff. It's 'when!'”

    He turned to the crowd around him and shouted, “We're going to BREAK the government!” The crowd repeated his comment, louder and louder until the throng offstage joined in. The outdoor auditorium started to resonate with the chant.

    He turned back to me. “You think Cruz shut down the government? These guys are such amateurs. Shutting down the government for a month was child's play. When I'm inaugurated on January 28th, I'm going to BREAK the government! We'll rebuild it from the ground up. And I know how to build things … cheaply.”

    Someone whispered to him; he said, “No, no, not going to happen.” Then he continued. “The current government is too expensive and inefficient. There are too many lawyers involved, and their fees are outrageous. It's cheaper and more effective to set up a new government by decree.”

    “And take a look at the Balance Sheet. All these assets – public lands, for instance. Why hold on to excessive inventory? I, er, we could sell them to private interests and fund tax cuts for years. Plus, the dollar to ruble exchange rate is favorable right now.”

    He shook his suit coat and fastened the middle button. “There's no better time to recoup my election investment than when the government is in shambles. In chaos, one finds opportunity, young man! Look at Cheney and Bush with terrorism and the Iraq war. They soaked millions out of America's fear. But I think big: billions, not millions. Let's get this party started!” He smiled and repeated to the crowd, “Let's get this party started!” The crowd roared back.

    “Your on in two minutes, Mr. Trump,” said his assistant. Trump touched his hair until he felt satisfied, then turned back to me.

    “Cruz: what a joke. He blew $20 billion in a couple of weeks. Paultry. When I shut things down, we'll be talking big money. Real money!” He nodded to his assistant, then added, “It's like a bone: sometimes you have to re-break it to set it straight. And I'm not going to waste money on anesthesia and expensive healthcare. A bullet and a bottle of whiskey.”

    He turned, walked out in front of the crowd, and yelled, “Let's get this party started!”

    The crowd ignited!
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