Narcissistic Personality Disorder, how might it impact a Presidency?
This is because their behavior and responses are driven not by decision making so much as the pathology of their narcissism.
Narcissists do not change. And if you are trusting that Donald Trump will change and improve and get better you are not an admirer or friend or even a follower of his, you’re a victim.
Some use the term ‘malignant narcissist’. The narcissist is dangerous to the people around them whom are almost never sufficently aware of the narcissists inability to care, their ready willingness to say absolutely anything in order to avoid blame and shame for their actions. And with former President Donald Trump, his deep irrational concern over what you think of him, and the lengths that he is willing to go to in order to maintain for himself a sense of his superiority in the eyes of others and in his own mind. Narcissists are complex.
For the narcissist his primary focus in life is the avoidance of feelings of shame. He cannot process those feeling normally, and it is this that is at the core of malignant narcissism, at the center of what drives his most dangerous behaviors. This is a characteristic of every narcissist. The inability to process shame in normal healthy ways.
Trump envies. Trump envies Putin for example, and has publicly expressed his envy, and he envies others as well. And he also assumes that everyone envies him. Another clinical characteristic of narcissistic personality disorder.
He perceives himself as superior and believes that he should be treated as such and should only interact with other ‘special’ people like himself.
If Donald Trump gets the sense that his superiority is being threatened by someone, whether that threat is real or an imagined threat, Donald Trump will immediately begin to degrade and devalue the person.
As President he did this verbally publicly repeatedly to almost everyone in a position of responsibility that exercised their responsibilities in his presence in public, where the exercise of such may have left Donald Trump looking less knowledgeable thus less superior than that person.
And when this was the case, 'that person' was afterward publicly attacked, degraded and devalued. In every single case. I could provide names here, but it's better for the exercise when you think about it and identify the victums yourself.
At White House press briefings where he was present. It was typical of Donald Trump to repeatedly interrupt the person speaking to interject whatever he though needed to be said in that moment, as if the person speaking wasn't doing a good enough job. He always ended up saying something stupid, having taken the stage with some knowledgeable expert in the subject matter. He always ended up looking like a fool, because he doesn't actually know, but felt he needed to say something so that he could appear to know. Desperate to have you to think that he did know. All in order to achieve the comfort of believing that you believed that he knew more than the other person at the podium or at least just as much.
Narcissists don’t read. The mere act of reading in the mind of the narcissist implies to the narcissist that they don’t know. An experience too painful. Therefore the experience is avoided.
How many times has he said to industry professionals, senior engineers, career scientists, medical professionals that, "that’s not so hard, I could do that", in front of the public. Even offering recommendations for solutions on several occasions. Which in most cases left him looking like an idiot. He is his own worse enemy in that. But he is powerless to stop it.
Driven. He’s not making decisions about doing things, he is reacting to the emotion of fear. The fear that from his view he might be perceived as being inferior to those appearing with him in public. And interestingly, his primary target for convincing with these frantic efforts at addressing these perceived threats to his superiority was himself. Narcissists are insecure and fearful. That also is what makes them so dangerous. They are driven by fear and the avoidance of shame.
And they will do this at any cost and by any means.
A narcissist does not view the ‘truth’ normally. For them the truth is whatever serves to keep them free of shame or blame and the resultant unbearable discomfort from it. This includes saying what it takes to convince you that he is the victim and therefore cannot logically be blamed. A narcissist will always blame others. And when accused of doing what they are doing, will blame you and accuse you of victimizing them.
This makes Donald Trump the absolute perfect poster child for the White Nationalists whose rhetoric nearly always seeks to paint themselves as the victim.
He has no ability to recognize the harm that he does to others. He simply lacks the ability to understand how you are impacted, how you feel. A narcissist lacks empathy. Period. They are incapable of putting themselves in your place. Think of it like a computer lacking a particular chip for certain functionality. It's literally just like that. For narcissists, empathy is simply not there. And he doesn't choose to be like that. He simply lacks the component to perform that task.
Narcissists flourish in mayhem and work to create chaos (although I do not think that they are consciously aware that they do this). Because out of mayhem he can and will twist and craft a tale of what the truth is that will leave him blame and shame free and leave trusting admirers around him clueless as to what has just happened. For narcissists chaos is a survival tool, and narcissists use it more or less continually.
A narcissist is a person that cannot process shame in normal ways. That is what is at the core of all of Donald J. Trumps dysfunctional behavior. He is a true narcissist, a malignant narcissist.
And that is why Donald Trump does what Donald Trump does and has done and will do. And he will continue to do it because he cannot change. Narcissists are incapable of looking at themselves as normal people might from time to time do; recognizing shortcomings, admit wrongs and moving to correct them.
This in an abbreviated draft version of why Donald J. Trump is so incredibly dangerous in any role of leadership anywhere, and especially as the leader of a Country. And especially my country.
DSM-5 which contains the criterion for identifying Narcissistic Personality Disorder in individuals is lightly referenced in my observations and writing. NPD is rare and occurs in less that two percent (< 2%) of the population . Another intresting and helpful tool is this that I found online. Here you will have to replace the 'myself' with 'himself' in the questions.