http://www.newyorker.com/news/john-cassidy/donald-trump-sells-out-to-trickle-down-economics... A plan aimed at the middle class, however, could have complemented Trump’s populist line on immigration and trade, wrong-footed the Democrats, and allowed him to claim he had a three-pronged approach to raising wages and living standards. In short, it would have made him a much more formidable candidate.

The problem was that moving in that direction would have signalled that Trump was a genuine populist insurrectionary, rather than a cosseted billionaire who plays one on television....

...In the speech that Trump delivered at the Detroit Economic Club on Monday, all three of these giveaways to the rich featured prominently, as did deregulation—another issue that is of interest primarily to the donor class. “My campaign is about reaching out to everyone as Americans,” Trump said. But the details of his speech confirmed that he had caved in to the regressive, anti-tax G.O.P. orthodoxy...

Consequently, the contradictions attending Trump’s economic platform are more glaring than ever. He goes into the last months of the election campaign as a political schizophrenic....

As he delivered his speech in Detroit, the tensions between the populist Trump and the trickle-down Trump were quickly evident....

...Even Trump’s one new gesture toward low- and middle-income families, a proposal that families be allowed to deduct the cost of child care from their taxes, wasn’t quite what it seemed. For one thing, many poor families don’t pay much federal income tax: social security is their main burden. Secondly, the fact that it would be a tax deduction rather than a tax credit means that wealthy families would get a much bigger break....

...he moved on to regulation. Here, too, his remarks were straight out of the standard G.O.P. playbook...

During the primaries, his claim that he was beholden to no one was one of his biggest assets. Since he got the nomination, however, it has become very clear that he’s far from an independent operator. Unable or reluctant to finance and organize his own Presidential campaign, he has been forced to come to terms with the G.O.P. establishment, the wealthy interests that finance it, and the anti-government, anti-tax economic philosophy that rationalizes its existence.

Last month, in Trump’s address at the Republican Convention, we saw hints of where this reconciliation was heading. The Detroit Economic Club was the final destination, and it marks the resting place of Donald Trump the economic populist.

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