There is a consensus among the mental health professionals that I know that Donald Trump has a psychological disturbance – Malignant Narcissism. It is a permanent disorder of the personality – a way that their brain automatically perceives and relates to the world. The symptoms include antisocial features, paranoid traits, an absence of conscience, a profound need for power, and a grandiose sense of importance. These disturbed people tend to become enraged when faced with failures (or perceived failures).
They tend to blame others for failures, never accept responsibility for their antisocial actions and will blame others for what they did (or accuse them of wrong doing). They are excessively concerned with appearance and body image, adorn themselves with beautiful women like ornaments. They tend to blow up organizations they participate in when they feel challenged, causing chaos. (A word of caution, don’t get into a discussion with psychologists over Trump, they will go on for hours).
One feature of Malignant Narcissism that was interesting to me is their tendency to use projection as a psychological defense – a process where unacceptable thoughts and impulses are attributed to another. In other words, they tend to accuse other people of something they are doing.
We’ve seen Trump use projection throughout the campaign – accusing others of bigotry, self-interests, unethical or illegal actions of their Foundations, etc., but none are as disturbing as his mantra that the election is rigged. I wondered how this irresponsible claim of a rigged election might be related to the pattern of projection. It is true that the only political party currently under a consent decree for widespread attempt to intimidate voters is Trump’s own GOP.
In fact, Trump is asking his followers to do exactly what the Courts found was illegal and imposed sanctions that are still in effect. This is why the Democratic Party has filed a lawsuit claiming that the coordination of the RNC with the Trump Campaign to intimidate people at the polls in New Jersey and why next Wednesday the Court has ordered all the Parties to appear for a hearing.
In the last two days, written confirmation that the Trump Campaign has undertaken a voter suppression campaign to dent the right to vote to minorities, women and “idealistic” young people. This seems to confirm that an attempt to rig the election is underway – except it is Trump who is inspiring and his Party organizing it. We should all vote in this very consequential election.
If you see attempts by people to intimidate others at the polls (hint: look for middle aged, bearded white men with a hint of liquor on their breath and cami ball caps in predominantly minority neighborhoods), then tell the poll workers, call the police and if all else fails step up and defend the right to vote.