Pathological narcissism in politics

Narcissistic Personality Disorder

In the wake of the #MeToo movement, Trump said that it is ‘a very scary time’ for young men and that women are ‘doing great’.

Wait, what? Seriously?!

This is coming from the same man who says he grabs women ‘by the pussy’. The same man who has been accused of sexual assault by literally dozens of women. The same man who openly mocks Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, one of the women who accused current Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanagh of sexual assault.

This is coming from the same man that calls alt-right protestors, ‘very fine people’, as they yell ‘Jews will not replace us’ while marching through the streets with Confederate and Nazi flags.

This is coming from the same man who refers to refugees seeking asylum at the United States’ border as ‘animals’, all the while enacting policies that enable the government to take thousands of migrant children from their parents, keeping them in literal cages in detention centres. Many of those children will never, ever be reunited with their parents.

This is coming from the same man who launched his 2016 presidential campaign with a speech in which he described Mexicans as ‘criminals’ and ‘rapists’, who only bring drugs and crime into the United States.

This is coming from the same man who was the leading proponent for the racist, discredited ‘Birtherism’ conspiracy. The same man who reportedly said that black people are too stupid to vote for him. The same man who was sued by the U.S. Department of Justice for discrimination against black renters and had to then settle out of court.

This is coming from the same man who boasted that Trump Tower was now the tallest building in downtown Manhattan, hours after the Twin Towers collapsed on 9/11.

This is coming from President Donald Trump. The leader of the free world. A man who thrives on normalising bigotry and hatred; whose abhorrent and calculating rhetoric has led to Jews, Muslims, women, black people, brown people, and LGBTQIA+ people all being openly victimised and oppressed in 2018. Yes, in 2018!

Now I’m no psychiatrist, but it should not take Freud’s progeny to recognise these horrifying series of events are not the result of normal, rationale thinking.

We have seen this before. We vowed #NeverAgain. So why are we here?

Some argued that we are here because rural, white Americans were being economically marginalised (*spits out coffee*). Some will say that the ‘establishment’ was too corrupt - that Washington had it coming. Drain the swamp, right?

Yeah, I’m calling bullshit on that one. That is just what assholes say to quantify their hatred and bigotry.

We are here now, in 2018, because an army of manipulated and cowardly people are enabling the delusional fantasies of a vile and heinous man with textbook Narcissistic Personality Disorder, and thus, those very people are fulfilling the self-perpetuating role that pathological narcissism has played throughout history.

However, let us take a step back to look at the criteria for Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

ACCORDING TO SOURCES, including the 5th edition of the American ‘Diagnostic And Statistical Manual Of Mental Disorders’, people with Narcissistic Personality Disorder generally have most (at least five) or all of the symptoms listed below:

  • Grandiose sense of self-importance

  • Preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, or ideal/true love

  • A need to win at all costs

  • Lives in a fantasy world that supports their delusions of grandeur

  • Constant need for praise and admiration

  • Lack of empathy - exploits people without any guilt or shame

  • Envious of others and believing others are envious of them

  • Extreme sense of entitlement - arrogant and patronising

  • Frequently demeans, intimidates, bullies, or belittles others

  • Extremely sensitive to criticism or rejection from others.

SOUND FAMILIAR? I dare you to spend five minutes on Trump’s incendiary Twitter without being able to tick off each and every one of the above 10 boxes.

A practising Narcissist actively exercises the destructiveness of their Narcissistic Personality Disorder, in order to exploit, ‘win’ and control.

These people are master manipulators, torturers, twisted and warped in their views. They thrive on causing chaos, driving wedges between marriages, families, communities, or - hello! - between entire races, countries and religions.

Trump has Narcissistic Personality Disorder. He is literally a walking, talking, tweeting case study. And thanks to the Republican party and the (approximately) 25% of Americans who voted for him, the world now unfortunately has front row seats to continually witness this intensely calculating personality disorder.

So now that we recognise the signs, are there any Pathological Narcissists we can learn from throughout history, in order to navigate our present political climate? 

Well, we could look at Benito Mussolini, Napoleon Bonaparte, Fidel Castro, or even today, Vladimir Putin. All textbook Narcissists.

Or we could take a closer look at the biggest narcissistic prick of the modern age: Adolf Hitler (who was so entirely fucked up that dissecting this monster is almost too easy). Nonetheless, here we go . . . 

Grandiose sense of self-importance

Over-estimate their abilities and embellish their accomplishments

Hitler considered himself to be a one-in-a-million guy - an all around over-achiever and genius, and especially gifted as an artist. My my, did he ever have talent. FYI, he did not.

Hitler was delusional to the core. Although he had utterly screwed up his schooling, he still considered himself as talented as Michelangelo and Da Vinci’s love child, certain he would get into Vienna’s premiere art school. Then, when he was rejected, he was genuinely astonished. As-ton-ished. But don’t you know who I am!?

Yet, instead of facing up to the truth and trying to learn and grow from the experience, he simply lied. Telling anyone who would listen, that he had indeed been accepted into the Viennese Academy of Fine Arts, when in reality, he had been undeniably rejected . . . twice!

A need to win at all costs

Preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success and power

In Hitler’s earlier years, he had fantasies about becoming a great and powerful artist. When he fucked this up, he then developed the fantasy of becoming the world’s greatest and most powerful leader.

If only this monster had actually been able to draw!

Constant need for praise and admiration

They believe they are superior, special, or unique - and ought to be revered

Boy oh boy, did this jerk need excessive praise and admiration. In fact, praise and admiration, was the complete foundation of his first proper friendship, to a man called August Kubizek (also known as Gustl). 

Kubizek played to Hitler’s extensive ego. He viewed Hitler as a friend, yet also as a sort of eccentric folly, worthy of examination. And Hitler loved it, lapping up the deference and admiration like a, well, Narcissist!

Their friendship worked because each party found their role and played it exceptionally. Hitler was the self-publicising, douchy delusional poseur, and Kubizek, the self-effacing minion and attentive audience of one.

Kubizek’s passivity and general dullness was music to Hitler's tone-deaf ears. Hitler’s bossiness, self- importance and aggression could reign free, dominating this quiet and inoffensive musician.

In fact, while we are on Kubizek . . .

Envious of others, and believing others are envious of them

Bitter, twisted jealousy

While Hitler’s blowhard nature compensated for his academic failings, Kubizek’s quiet poise actually reflected a genuine ability. And this infuriated Hitler. He fucking hated it.

And then Kubizek just had to go and get accepted into the Vienna Conservatoire to practice piano, eventually becoming an accomplished musician and conductor. It is enough to drive a practising pathological narcissist to self-centred madness . . .

NOW I COULD KEEP GOING, as there are literally hundreds of narcissistic, repugnant examples from which to choose with Hitler.

However, instead let us stop, take heed, and all try to grasp something disgusting: Hitler’s Pathological Narcissism resulted in the most destructive genocide of Jews in history, the Holocaust. 

The Holocaust was the systematic, state-organised, bureaucratic, persecution and genocide of Jews by the German Nazi government and its collaborators. Conservative estimates on the total number of innocent human beings murdered in the Holocaust is six million Jews (yes, that is the low estimate), yet high estimates are in excess of 17 million. Let me write that out in full: 17,000,000. Think of 17 of your closest friends. Now imagine them all murdered. Now times that by a million people.

This is what happens when people enable a Pathological Narcissist. This is the price of silence.

Alarming fact alert: according to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), anti-Semitic incidents have risen by nearly 60%* since the election of Trump. Nowhere was this more appallingly evident as when 11 Jews were recently murdered in their local synagogue, gunned down by a crazed extremist claiming he wanted ‘all Jews to die’, while justifying his actions with Trump’s inflaming tone and rhetoric.

Donald Trump is a practising Narcissist. Knowing how, when and where Pathological Narcissism has besieged humanity throughout the course of history means that I, for one, cannot just watch these deadly delusions be repeated. I cannot sit and watch as he continues to marginalise, rationalise and dehumanise those that do not look, think, or act like him.

SO WHAT CAN PEOPLE DO to avoid Trump and other Narcissistic Personality Disorder fuckwits? It is actually incredibly simple: do not fall for their deceptive fantasy.

Narcissists have a sixth sense for exploiting weakness. They identify a target who may be momentarily upset, more consistently emotionally unstable, someone who is grieving, etc. - and literally play with these people, like a cat toying with a mouse. The more fragile their victims’ current self-esteem, the more enticing it is to the narcissist.

In Trump’s case, he has identified a whole group of people who are panic-stricken about those who do not look or seem like them, and utterly hysterical about anyone who does not fit their deluded ideology of conservative Christianity. 

While these people are partially blind to his manipulation, they also directly benefit from it. Yet Trump is toying with these people - building a literal and figurative wall to completely ostracise them from the entirety of progressive humankind, who is thankfully moving forward without them.

Many of us have fallen for the faux-draw of the delusional Pathological Narcissist. It is easy to get caught up in their web, thinking they will fulfil a longing to feel more significant, important and more alive. Yet, it is all a false and warped fantasy - and an exorbitant one which will eventually come with a huge price to pay.

If you have been duped by a Narcissist, do not blame yourself. Yet, now that you know the signs and can see the truth of it, you HAVE to act.

Your needs will never be fulfilled by this Narcissist. Ever. In fact, they will not ever truly be recognised. You must face who your Abuser is, and not who you want them to be.

Stop making excuses for Trump’s repulsive behaviour and playing down the inexplicable pain he is causing. Do not justify his conduct by the fact that the majority of this pain is being inflicted on someone who does not look, think or act like you. Denial will not make him go away.

Stop vindicating this Administration because of your own fear of minorities - you are feeding your own worst attributes.

He is a truly sick and twisted individual and he is using you. He is laughing at you. He will ruin you. He is ruining you and the people you care about. 

Trump's divisive and bigoted rhetoric cannot continue to be the new normal. America can not let that happen. None of us can let that happen.

TO TRUMP ENABLERS: your idol is a pathetic, Pathological Narcissist, just like Hitler, Putin and Castro. He does not love you. He does not care for you. He does not need you. He is a sick, selfish and sad little man, who must be held accountable.

He is the same man that has been accused of multiple sexual assaults. The same man that refers to entire African nations as ‘shit holes’. The same man that boasted after 9/11. The same man that put refugee children in cages. The same man that attacks the FBI and the media. The same man that praises oppressive dictators. The same man who grabbed them by the pussy.

Do not be part of an army of obedient sycophantic enablers. Freedom is not free. Silence is not golden. 


THIS FEATURE IS DEDICATED to all those who feel marginalised and oppressed; to everyone whose people have been persecuted in history; and to every single person who has been viciously attacked by a Pathological Narcissist.