I worked in the Justice Department (as a GS-15 in the National Institute of [formerly, Law Enforcement and Criminal] Justice, Law Enforcement Assistance Administration) during the Nixon Administration, when John Mitchell (soon to be indicted and convicted) was Attorney General. I was asked to do a few off-the-wall things while there. So I have some words of advice for those employees of the Federal government who are currently in positions of relative authority and who will be interacting with political appointees.
Some of their directives you will be told to implement will probably be counter to the stated (and authorized) goals of the agency. Moreover, many of them will be given to you orally.
First, go back to your office and write them down. If feasible, send it in memo form to your superior asking if you have gotten the directive right. That is, put it on the record.
Second, whether you have or havenâ€™t received a reply from your superior, make a list of issues, both pro and con, that may be affected by the proposed policy. Describe them in full context and cite the relevant legislation as necessary. Send this up the chain of command as well.
Third, you may also receive calls that are threatening or problematic. Write a memo to yourself to keep a record of it, and show it to a trusted friend as soon as possible, to establish a time line.
Fourth, do not use your office phone or computer (or cell phone while in the office) for personal reasons, as this may open you up to censure. In fact, I would suggest that you use Signal for your personal text messages (see the NYT article on its use) whenever you text, and ask your correspondents to do the same.
Others may have additional suggestions; please post them in the comments section.