President Donald Trump

By Dr David Laing Dawson

Is the election of Donald Trump a sign of the human race once again slipping into a very dark and destructive period?

History tells us it is. We humans have an uncanny ability to set in motion a series of unstoppable events that lead to mass extinction and common misery on a regular basis. And then we emerge and flourish once again, and for a while we tell ourselves that this must never happen again. And then many of us forget and focus on our immediate needs, and wishes, and desires, our disappointments, our hurt and outrage.

Old instincts kick in, the ones that served us well when we lived in small villages and tribes competing for limited hunting grounds. And then it happens all over again, a series of events that leads to a mass destruction, each time a little differently, but each time unleashing immense misery upon ourselves. As human history goes, we are at the tail end of a long period of relative peace.

Is this one of those moments? A chain of events without a definitive starting point, but including the invasion of Iraq, Egypt, Turkey, ISIS, Syria, Brexit, the rise of far-right leaders and dictators and would-be dictators in Europe and Russia, and then America.

I see on my Google news today the smiling face of Kellie Leitch espousing Trumpisms, and then that of the ridiculous Don Cherry telling us those pinko left-leaning weirdo Americans are not welcome in Canada.

Here is what I hope:

I hope we can keep this regressive craziness out of Canada. Don Cherry has evolved into a buffoon entertainer. Let us leave him in that role. Kellie Leitch is a more serious threat and she has been energized by Trump’s victory, so we need to be vigilant.

I think at least much of the success of Donald Trump is a backlash, or “Whitelash”. A reaction by a certain white demographic that has, for 8 years, seethed under the leadership of an African American. They were not ready for a black president, especially one so thoughtful, articulate, so obviously popular, calm, even-handed and fair. For eight years he has been an affront to their congenital views of the other race. That part is specifically, I hope, an American development, and this Trump win might energize the sane, non-racist, inclusive elements of America.

And then we have Donald. Many of the narcissistic, sociopathic charismatic leaders who have seized power in other historical moments had the same psychological profile as Donald J. Trump, but they did not grow up with his degree of luxury, and for years they harbored and nursed specific ideological and xenophobic beliefs. Donald, as far as we can tell, never served any idea beyond his own self-aggrandizement. He has really found himself in that office without any ideological baggage, nothing he fervently believes in anyway.

Perhaps his narcissism will be satiated with people, every day throughout the day, deferentially calling him Mr. President, with his photo in every public office, with sufficient moments on television and on the front page of newspapers, magazines, and being the number one search on Google – perhaps his narcissism will be sufficiently satiated so that he can quietly let other people (who may actually understand the complexities of the world and have some empathy) govern while he primps for the next photo op, and gives good speeches someone else wrote for him. He wants to be loved after all.

That is what I hope.

But I know better. A healthy narcissism is satisfied with a few positive comments about one’s blog, a partner who says she loves you, the improvement in the health of one’s patients,  children who tell you that they want their children to know you, and a smattering of applause for a job well done.

But Donald’s narcissism is not a healthy level of self-regard. Nor is it scrutinized, considered, or judged by Donald’s brain.

It will not be so easily satiated. For this level of narcissism there is no endpoint, no level of stasis and balance. It requires larger and larger doses of adulation. And for this he needs to face a crisis, walk across a battlefield of dismembered bodies, make life and death decisions, stand atop the pile of misery, face increasing threat (even if of his own making) and conquer it and be rewarded with unflinching adulation and adoration.

Such hunger could lead, eventually, to his destruction, and a great deal of suffering for the rest of us.

I hope I am wrong. Perhaps having achieved far more than his father, Donald can now rest on his laurels, cocooned from his critics by White House staff, and let competent others make sensible decisions. Perhaps his pragmatism may be a bulwark against the ideologues of the Republican party. Perhaps.

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4 thoughts on “President Donald Trump

  1. Hope hope hope Here’s one of my past posts that relates to your observations.

    I’ve been thinking lately about the “burning down the house” phenomenon. When the Federal Bureau of Prisons was still in the treatment mode in the 70’s, I participated in a therapeutic community group in the then new supermax Marion Federal Penitentiary. The community’s maximum security inmates taught me about character disorders, which is what they called people with severe personality disorder of mixed narcissistic and antisocial traits. They said a common indicator of character disorder is revealed by the story about the young boy who had always had a sense of entitlement and overblown self-importance. Although the boy had an ok home life, for some reason he always wanted more and punished anyone who had more than he. One cold winter evening, the boy was prowling a neighborhood and noticed a family who were enjoying a holiday dinner together, laughing and even singing with love and joy. The boy was so angry that he wasn’t part of the fun, he set the house on fire.

    Couldn’t help think about Trump.

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  2. The horror has happened and we now must walk on eggs. To imagine we are in safe hands with this sociopath is rubbish. Two faces that revealed the reality of this new situation were Angela Merkel and Joe Biden. Some are crying out for giving this monster the “benefit of the doubt”. There is no doubt! He is dangerous and he will surround himself with the mob of self centred power seekers. We are now revisiting what happened in Germany’s 1930 s . Once the power grab has happened there is no appeasement. Just to check that I was not out of line, I reviewed a lot of material that Trump has said over the years . He is more frightening than I even thought. It is not what causes his sociopathy here,it is how the Americans deal with it. I fear that he has all the levers of power along with his cronies. Beware of Newt Gingrich ,Christie and that ex Italian mayor. There appear to be a lot of Barbie”Look a likes” enabling him. He has manipulated bullied ,abused others to gain the top job in the great USA . It has come to this. Your article was right on Dawson. When a criminal gets into power who knows what will happen ?

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  3. Questioning Donald Trump’s mental health is essential. He seems to display the signs of borderline personality disorder. Six percent of the population has this hard to recognize mental illness while only one in four is diagnosed. The most important symptom displayed by these individuals is constantly finding faults in themselves and others. They see everything in black-and-white, all-good or all-bad terms. Anyone who disagrees with them is all-bad. When Trump speaks, is their no end to his faultfinding?

    Borderlines inwardly criticize themselves but won’t admit it. Many of their actions are aimed at countering this poor self-image. This may include aggressive self-promotion and putting others down. They often blame all their problems on others while playing the role of the victim. Borderlines rarely if ever apologize for their hurtful actions. Does Trump apologize for his insults?

    Borderlines are notorious for lying and operating on the premise that their feelings make facts instead of facts making facts. This is emotional reasoning instead of logical reasoning. They accept delusions over facts in order to believe they don’t make mistakes and to confirm their view of the world. Is this descriptive of Donald’s “alternate reality?”

    People can have more than one personality disorder. They can have both narcissistic personality disorder, which many agree Trump suffers from, and borderline personality disorder.

    There are nine criteria for borderline personality disorder. A person has to display five of them to be diagnosed. The first and most important symptom is extreme faultfinding, which Trump clearly displays. The second criterion is reckless impulsivity in spending, sex, or other areas. Trump’s businesses have declared bankruptcy four times and he has been a plaintiff or defendant in some 3,500 lawsuits. In the area of sex, his comments about his sexual assaults are revealing. He has gone through three wives. And what is the story behind his owning the Miss USA Pageant, alternately oogling naked contestants while they were dressing and later criticizing them?

    The third Borderline trait is intense mood swings. So volatile are these individuals that dealing with them is called “walking on eggshells.” All living Presidents, both Democrat and Republican, agree this is not a desirable trait in a President.

    The fourth sign Borderlines display is intense and even uncontrolled anger. This was a defining theme of Donald’s campaign. He frequently expresses it and thrills in provoking it in his audiences.

    Fifth, Borderlines suffer from serious identity disturbances. They often change their personalities and beliefs to match the people around them in order to be accepted or to gain an identity. So what does Donald Trump really believe? He espouses different beliefs almost as often as the seasons change. His political affiliations have been Democrat, Republican, Reformed Party, Democrat, Republican, Independent and now Republican.

    The sixth criterion for borderline personality disorder is chronic feelings of emptiness. In order to fight these feelings Borderlines can become obsessed with seeking unending stimulation, possessions, love and admiration. No matter what you do for them, they are never satisfied. They can never have enough. Observe Donald’s bottomless pit of neediness for attention and ostentatious displays of wealth. Does he really care about others? Trump has been called “The least charitable billionaire in the world.”

    Seventh, Borderlines can have transient stress-related paranoia or unreality episodes. His utterances display his paranoid ideas about all the bad people he imagines. His statements about how Congress and the world will run when he is President extend into the realm of unreality as do his tweet rants and conspiracy theories.

    I cannot speak concerning the last two criteria, suicide attempts/self-mutilation and frantic efforts to avoid abandonment. Others may know if Trump has ever had an in-person psychological evaluation or therapy.

    Borderline personality disorder is the hardest to understand and diagnose of all the personality disorders. Its non-descriptive name makes the situation worse. Many of the seventy-five percent who are never diagnosed are “high-functioning” and can be very successful as doctors, lawyers, professors and CEOs of companies. Unfortunately, they can make the lives of those who have to live or work with them miserable.

    Borderline personality disorder is the deadliest mental illness in all of human history. The two psychological biographies of Adolf Hitler, The psychopathic god: Adolf Hitler and Hitler’s psychopathology both agree that he had borderline personality disorder. He was responsible for at least twenty-one million killed. Mao Zedong was diagnosed as Borderline by his physician of twenty-two years. He was responsible for seventy million killed. I wrote the book Faultfinders: The impact of borderline personality disorder as a warning about leaders with this mental illness. I illustrated the condition in other famous people such as Marilyn Monroe and Princess Diana. I also proposed that a more descriptive term for this mental illness would be faultfinding personality disorder. Would that name bring to mind Adolf Hitler and Donald Trump?

    The thought of Adolf Hitler having nuclear weapons is terrifying. If Donald Trump has the same mental illness as Hitler, the terror is orders of magnitude greater. He could start a war that would destroy humanity and render our planet virtually uninhabitable. We need to know Donald Trump’s true mental health status.

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