July 13, 2024

Trumps "Truth" posts add up to the only psychological test you need to diagnose Donald Trump as a dangerous maniac. All the leaders of our allies need to do to be terrifed that he'll be the next president is to read them, by Hal Brown, MSW


In 2017 Dr. John Gartner, the founder of Duty to Warn, wrote 

All I Ever Wanted to Know about Donald Trump I Learned From His Tweets: A Psychological Exploration of the President 



Currently his tweets on what was then called Twitter have been replaced by what he wants to call "truths" (thankfully not in the dictionary like "tweet" is) on Truth Social. Therefore, if one was to write an updated book the title would have to be changed. 

In 2019 The New York Times (subscription) published 

How Trump Reshaped the Presidency in Over 11,000 Tweets



This article was co-authored by Trump's on again off again pal Maggie Haberman and five other Times writers. It begins:

When Mr. Trump entered office, Twitter was a political tool that had helped get him elected and a digital howitzer that he relished firing. In the years since, he has fully integrated Twitter into the very fabric of his administration, reshaping the nature of the presidency and presidential power.

After Turkey invaded northern Syria this past month, he crafted his response not only in White House meetings but also in a series of contradictory tweets. This summer, he announced increased tariffs on $300 billion worth of Chinese goods, using a tweet to deepen tensions between the two countries. And in March, Mr. Trump cast aside more than 50 years of American policy, tweeting his recognition of Israel’s sovereignty in the Golan Heights. He openly delighted in the reaction he provoked.

“Boom. I press it,” Mr. Trump recalled months later at a White House conference attended by conservative social media personalities, “and, within two seconds, ‘We have breaking news.’”

Flash forward to when Trump lost the election. Trump's tweets, and then his truths, gave us a deeper insight into how his mind functioned. It hasn't been pretty.

He used these to send personal vicious messages to individuals but also to the country since he knew the more inflamatory ones would be shared in the media. This is from the Times article:

“Boom. I press it,” Mr. Trump recalled months later at a White House conference attended by conservative social media personalities, “and, within two seconds, ‘We have breaking news.’”

Whether or not the leaders of our allies or our enemies (some of whom may very well have secret channels to communicate with him) are following what Trump says at his rallies, it's reasonable to assume that they are people with subscriptions to Truth Social. A message to us is also a message to them.

I don't know if Trump cares that leaders and residents in other countries would be reading these too and would be wondering what would happen if this unhinged revenge fueled lunatic became president again. Perhaps, given that he's a malignant narcissist, he wants them to be terrified of him. He wants to be feared. It makes him feel powerful. This is the nature of the beast.

Our allies may see Trump as a clown, but they also see him as a dangerous clown:


Above: AI Generated image

Can you imagine what leaders of NATO thought when they heard that told a rally crowd that he “didn’t even know” much about NATO before he became president — but claimed he figured it out fast. (More from the rally speech on bottom of page). Trump was bragging about what a fast learner he was when he said this when if fact he was revealing what an ignorant dolt he was.

Obviously Trump thinks that video clips of his swinging a golf club are impressive or he wouldn't post them (someone shares the Truth Social posts on X):

Between what comes through Trump's brain and out of his mouth and what pops into his mind and onto Truth Social via his stubby fingers leaders of the world's democracies are no doubt dreading the possiblity he'll become president again.

From the rally speech:

Today he’s (Biden) with the people from NATO and these people show up. I know very well every one of them. They’re very smart. They’re at the top of their game, and then they’re saying, “What the hell is with this guy? We know we can’t figure out –”

You know I saved NADDO [sic] because when I went down — hey, Barack Hussein Obama, has anyone ever heard of him?

He would go, he would go and, you know, go to wherever the holding had a meeting and he’d make a nice speech and Bush would go and make a nice speech and he would leave, in all fairness. Bush, Bush!

But he makes a nice speech and they’re all going to make speeches, and then they wouldn’t even stay there a day.

I went and didn’t make a nice speech. I said, what the hell are you doing? Nobody’s paying, nobody was paying.

And I didn’t want to be obnoxious because I felt it was the first time I’d ever done this. And what? I didn’t even know what the hell NATO was too much before, but it didn’t take me long to figure it out. Like about two minutes.

And the first thing I figured out was they weren’t paying. We were paying. We were paying almost fully for, you know, and and I said, that’s unfair, but I didn’t want to make a big mess.

And I was president in — for about 15 minutes. And I didn’t want you to know go after NATO as my first —

But, but six months later, I went back to the second meeting and I said, you know what? You’re not paying your bills. You got to pay your bills. So somebody stood up from from one of the countries, 28 countries, and only seven were paying what they should be paying. 28 countries, think of that. And these countries now we added a couple but 28 countries. And they said, sir, could I ask you? I said, “you have to pay your bills.”

They said, “Sir, may I ask you a question. If we don’t pay your bills, will you protect us from Russia?”

I said, “You mean you’re delinquent?”

They said, “Yes, we’re delinquent. Let’s say we’re delinquent, will you protect us?”

I said, “No, I will not protect you from Russia.”

The money came in by the billions!


You can read this and previous blogs on two websites and on Substack. One may look better than the other because of how the platforms present the page.

Read on the WordPress Stressline.org (you can subscrbe to this on the upper left)

or….

Read on the Google Blogger platform HalBrown.org This version has a Disquis comment section which makes it easy to post links and images.

or… Hal’s Substack where you can sing up to get an email when I post a new blog.



July 12, 2024

Biden (or whoever runs) should call Trump a malignant narcissist, by Hal Brown, MSW

 

Anyone who reads Salon knows what malignant narcissism is thanks to columnist Chauncey DeVega. He has interviewed many mental health experts on the subject. Readers of Salon know that the diagnosis fits Trump like a custom made glove. Unfortunately the general public doesn't know that Trump has this dangerous psychopatholgy. That needs to change. 

Here's how:

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, or whoever ends up running for president and vice president, should call Trump a malignant naricssist whenever possible. They should read the definition off of a card (not a teleprompter). This would give a dramatic flair and nobody expects someone to memorize this portion of the Wikipedia definition word for word:

Malignant narcissism is a psychological syndrome comprising a mix of narcissismantisocial behaviorsadism, and a paranoid outlook on life.t is a subcategory of narcissistic personality disorder which could also include traits of antisocial personality disorderparanoid personality disorder and sadistic personality disorder. 

Malignant narcissists are grandiose and always ready to raise hostility levels, which undermines the families and organizations in which they are involved, and dehumanizes the people with whom they associate.

Then they should say something which urges people to look it up. Biden, in his style, could say "I'm serious, folks, look it up.? This is important. Ask yourself if you want a malignant narcissist implementing Project 2025?" 

Hopefully, before too long this internet search will rank near the top of the list of of the most frequently searched terms on Google the way Project 2025 has. As you probably know Project 2025 knocked Taylor Swift off the top of the list. We'll know how well this is working by checking the Google metrics.

This is the result of a Google search of malignant narcissist.

Psychologist Dr. Johh Gartner, the founder of Duty to Warn (@DutytoWarn) was the frist to explain in the media how Trump was a malignant narcissist in "Donald Trump's malignant narcissism is toxic" which was published on May 4, 2017.

Since then numerous mental health professionals and others have written about Trump and malignant narcissism.

John Gartner has been in forefront among mental health professionals who sounded the alarm about Trump being a malignant narcissist. He appeared on "Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell" (here). In that interview he said:

If we could construct a psychiatric Frankenstein monster, we could not create a leader more dangerously mentally ill than Donald Trump. He`s a paranoid, psychopathic narcissistic who`s divorced from reality and lashes out impulsively at his imagined enemies. And this is someone as you mentioned who`s handling the nuclear codes.

 He and others produced the documentary #UNFIT: The Pyschology of Donald Trump. Here's the trailer.

At present Gartner and another clincial psychologist, Harry Segal, have a weekly podcast here called Shrinking Trump.

Psychoanalyst Lance Dodes, MD has also been outspoken in the media about Trump's dangerous psychopathogy (here)

If you add Trump to your internet search of malignant narcissist this is the result.

Here is a 2019 Psychology Today article: "Malignant Narcissism: Does the President Really Have It?" The author, Bill Eddy, a clincial social worker and a lawyer used quotes from John Gartner's arguement saying he did and another therapist's argument saying he didn't. Then in May of 2020 Eddy published an update based on how Trump was handling the Covid crisis and he seemed to be leaning towards saying that Trump was a malignant narcissist. His conclusion was:

Overall, the president’s overconfidence, self-absorption, and disrespect for science and scientists appear to have rendered him unprepared and ineffective, as well as dangerous. He appears to have become more aggressive, more reckless, more fearful, more stressed, and more isolated. These recent patterns of behavior appear to be increasing over the past year.

Some people will say that his words and deeds simply demonstrate harmless hyperbole. Others will focus on the events of the day, viewing each event in isolation as a political issue to argue about, perhaps with name-calling and extreme emotions. But those who recognize personality patterns and use personality awareness to predict future behavior may see this update as a cause for grave concern, whether or not this meets the criteria of a mental disorder.

In August of 2019 Newsweek published "George Conway Says Trump Is a 'Malignant Narcissist': He's 'Both Mentally Disordered and Evil'. Conway wasn't the only laweyer saying this: Former Trump lawyer Jenna Ellis said she wouldn't vote for Trump in 2024 because he is a 'malignant narcissist'.

In January 2024 Who What Why published Trump’s Mental Illness Needs to Be Part of the Conversation in 2024. In view of the current questions about Biden's cognition the first paragraphs are especially relevant:

We periodically point out that Donald Trump is seriously mentally ill. From being a pathological liar to a textbook example of malignant narcissism, the former president displays a cluster of disorders that, in other circumstances, might not get him institutionalized, but would definitely justify some form of treatment. 

So why aren’t we talking about that?

The GOP seems intent on making President Joe Biden’s age an issue in the upcoming election (although Trump is only four years younger), and that is perfectly appropriate in light of the fact that the incumbent would be 86 at the end of a second term.

It is important that experts — rather than Fox News pundits, who interpret every one of Biden’s verbal slips as a sign of advanced dementia — weigh in on this topic. After all, being president is a stressful and highly demanding job, so is it possible for an octogenarian to do it well? That is a valid question, and it seems as though voters deserve an answer. 

But they should also know whether one of the candidates is very likely completely nuts.

John Gartner was interviewed about this by Chauncey DeVega in Salon on April 2, 2024:

After Biden's debate I was among those writing about their concern that he might be in the early stages of dementia. The day before Salon published the Gartner interview above I was quoted at length speculating as to whether Trump had dementia in another Chauncey DeVega Salon column: Clinical social worker: "With the Trump Bible, one must consider dementia."

Malignant narcissism is a psychological term the meaning of which isn't widely known the way the meaning of dementia and Alzheimer's is. Whoever runs for president can help change that. 

It is fair to question whether Biden is showing signs of early dementia now or will end up succumbing to this terrible disease during his presidency. We know that Donald Trump meets every criteria for being diagnosed as a malignant narcissist now. 

You can read this and previous blogs on two websites and on Substack. One may look better than the other because of how the platforms present the page.

Read on the WordPress Stressline.org (you can subscrbe to this on the upper left)

or….

Read on the Google Blogger platform HalBrown.org This version has a Disquis comment section which makes it easy to post links and images.

or… Hal’s Substack where you can sing up to get an email when I post a new blog.

July 11, 2024

Even if Biden lapses into the Biden of the debate from time to time if the polls say he is the most likely to beat Trump Democrats will have to stand by their man, by Hal Brown, MSW

 

Update: Yesterday I wrote the following in my blog:

Perhaps introducing a well known and incredibly popular person by the wrong name would be enough of a major slip to blow up his candidacy today. What would happen if Taylor Swift decided to endorse him? This would be headline news. Then what if she'd appeared in person at an event? What if he called her to the podium and then her called her Beyoncé?

Today this story is making the news:

Biden stumbles over Zelenskyy introduction, calls him ‘President Putin’

This is what I wrote this morning:

Even though the latest polling shows that a majority of Democrats and all US adults want Biden to step aside he has moved up in the general election poll to a tie with Trump. There aren't polls showing whether another Democrat would do better. Those who have garnered publicity by explaining why they believe Biden shouldn't run must pay attention to the polls and be willing to do whatever public mea culpa suits them and figure out a way to throw their support behind him.

Two new just-released national polls taken well after the June 27 presidential debate show President Joe Biden tied with or one point ahead of Donald Trump. This comes after a new study released Wednesday found the presidential debate "had little if any impact" on voters' preference, and showed President Biden retained more of his supporters than Donald Trump did. (RAWSTORY)

The late, great Tammy Wynette was a Democrat. This is from the Sept. 23, 1992 Los Angeles Times:

Democrats Eagerly Flaunt Hallowed Totems of GOP : Campaign: From country singers to business backers, Clinton camp has appropriated key Republican symbols.

“They’re stealing our symbols,” one Republican operative cried after she learned that country singer Tammy Wynette had performed at the glittering fund-raiser last week for Bill Clinton in Beverly Hills.

If Republicans were disappointed to learn that one of their favorite cultural emblems was fraternizing with the enemy, they were positively gloomy Monday when Clinton released the names of over 400 supporters from the business community--including several the GOP had counted in its corner.

“It shows that our base, our business base, and even our cultural base, are hemorrhaging,” said one Republican strategist close to the White House.

Her all time greatest hit song was "Stand By Your Man." The song was placed at number one on CMT's list of the Top 100 Country Music Songs.

The lyrics are simple and it would be easy to make a few changes and apply them to President Biden:


Sometimes it's hard to be a woman
Giving all your love to just one man.
You'll have bad times
And he'll have good times,
Doin' things that you don't understand.

But if you love him you'll forgive him,
Even though he's hard to understand.
And if you love him Oh be proud of him,
'Cause after all he's just a man.

Stand By Your Man,
Give him two arms to cling to,
And something warm to come to
When nights are cold and lonely.

Stand By Your Man,
And tell the world you love him.
Giving all the love you can.
Stand By Your Man.

Stand By Your Man,
And show the world you love him.
Keep giving all the love you can;

You can listen to Tammy Wynette sing the song here.

If President Biden decides to run those who have gone public expressing deep concern about his cognitive decline will have to have to sing a new tune.

George Clooney, Jon Stewart, Bill Maher, and Michael Moore, this means you. Likewise, the members of the editorial board of The New York Times and everyone who in one way or another has gone public saying Biden should step aside.

All of these people are like me in that they have deep concerns about Biden's cognitive condition. They will have to engage in uncomfortable duplicity in their public pronouncments and not express their doubts as they explain that even with needing to take a nap like Ronald Reagan, John F. Kennedy, Bill Clinton he will be an effective president See website): 

There are risks in invoking the name of Ronald Reagan since it is widely thought that he was suffering from Alzheimer's in the final years of his presidency, but he is still held in the highest regard by Republicans.

We will learn more about Biden's cognitive fitness today when he faces an aggresive press corp in the press conference today. There will be reporters there who have sincere concerns about his ability to handle the rigors of the presidency. There are probably some who want to make their bones by asking the question that knocks him off, off balance that is.

Biden has another face-to-face interview coming up on Monday. This time it is with Lester Holt:

Still, no matter how badly he performs in the press conference or anywhere else those wanting to prevent Trump from winning and who are likely to make the news are going to have to spin his cogntive lapses and mental missteps. They will have to keep their worries to themselves. They will have to become as adept at spinning a Biden mental malfunction as Karine Jean-Pierre:

You can read this and previous blogs on two websites and on Substack. One may look better than the other because of how the platforms present the page.

Read on the WordPress Stressline.org (you can subscrbe to this on the upper left)

or….

Read on the Google Blogger platform HalBrown.org This version has a Disquis comment section which makes it easy to post links and images.

or… Hal’s Substack where you can sing up to get an email when I post a new blog.

July 10, 2024

Uh-oh, Joe, you may be one major cognitive glitch or a series of minor slips away from either losing the election of being forced to withdraw, by Hal Brown, MSW

 

I recommend watching the Jon Stewart segment which is getting a lot ot media attention (here).

This is what Jacques Berlinerblau, MSNBC Columnist and Georgetown University professor, wrote about Jon Stewart's take (above link) on Biden running: Jon Stewart’s ‘told you so’ about Biden was the scolding we needed.

He concludes his article:

He (Stewart) dutifully reminded his audience that Democrats could work this all out at, let’s say, a convention. In a place like Chicago, perhaps? In like, six weeks maybe? While there, the Dems could reflect upon their options after, for example, visiting the restaurant featured in the FX series “The Bear.”  In the flurry, Stewart clarified “I am not saying Biden should drop out; [but] can’t we open up the conversation?”

That sounds reasonable to me.

So here we are. In retrospect, Stewart was likely correct to light up Biden a few months back. He did so not in the name of bothsidesism, but to warn his viewers of a serious vulnerability, a vulnerability Republicans and their comms people were already pouncing on. Comedy isn’t always “correct” or” factually true.” Actually, it rarely is, and we wouldn’t like it if it aspired to be so. But in this case it was and, though damning for some of us, Stewart is vindicated as having tried to warn America about a Biden weakness we were trying not to see.

Biden has lost the NY Times editorial board - twice in fact, having reiterated it's previous call for him to step down on Tuesday -You need a subscription to read the Times editorial so below are excerpts from a summary published by The Independent Jouralism Review:

“They should listen instead to the much larger group of voters who have been telling every pollster in America their concerns for a long time. Mr. Biden has to pay attention to the will of the broader electorate that will determine the outcome in November,” it insisted.

Additionally, the editorial board recalled that while he was defending his fitness for the job, Biden said he needed to sleep more and work less after 8 p.m., and added, “He has resisted the obvious conclusion that a man who needs to clock out at 8 should not attempt to perform simultaneously two of the world’s most difficult and all-consuming jobs — serving as president and running for president.”

The Times called on Democrats to “speak plainly to Mr. Biden. They need to tell him that his defiance threatens to hand victory to Mr. Trump. They need to tell him that he is embarrassing himself and endangering his legacy. He needs to hear, plain and clear, that he is no longer an effective spokesman for his own priorities.”

Finally, the editorial board wrote, “President Biden clearly understands the stakes. But he seems to have lost track of his own role in this national drama. As the situation has become more dire, he has come to regard himself as indispensable. He does not seem to understand that he is now the problem — and that the best hope for Democrats to retain the White House is for him to step aside.”

Now he's lost Jon Stewart for the same reasons. He's lost Bill Maher too. He's lost Michael Moore.  Moore was one of the few intellectual voices who predicted Trump would defeat Hillary Clinton.

Even Stephen King said he should bow out. Even Stephen King said he should bow out in the interest of the America he lovesGeorge Stephanopoulos was caught saying Biden can't serve "four more years" days after his interview. Today George Clooney said he should step down.

Clooney is adding his voice to a chorus of liberal celebrities calling for Biden to step down. Like it or not America, like other Western nations, is a celebrity culture where they wield considerable poltical influence. Reagan probably wouldn't have been elected governor of California if he wasnt a TV and movie star. Trump would never have become president had it not been for a TV show. Zelenskyy might not have become president of Ukraine had he not been on TV including the TV series "Servant of the People," in which Zelenskyy played a fictional Ukrainian president. 

This news just broke (reported in The NY Times) :

Representative Nancy Pelosi of California, the former House speaker and a longtime Biden ally, gave the strongest public signal yet that the president could reconsider his re-election bid, suggesting on Wednesday that “time is running short” for him to make a decision.

Speaking on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” Ms. Pelosi, 84, said that she would back Mr. Biden “whatever he decides.” But she said she wanted to restart conversations about Mr. Biden’s political future after the NATO summit he is hosting this week in Washington, which on Thursday will include the president’s first news conference since his disastrous debate performance against former President Donald J. Trump.

Representative Nancy Pelosi of California, the former House speaker and a longtime Biden ally, gave the strongest public signal yet that the president could reconsider his re-election bid, suggesting on Wednesday that “time is running short” for him to make a decision.

He's going to be our candidate regardless of what the editorial board of The NY Times, a few Democrats in Congress, and some celebrities say. Why, he must ask himself, should be give weight to what the editors of The New York Times are urging him to do if he think he knows himself better than they know him? He may think it shows the public how strong he is by standing up against not only to Trump, but by defying the mighty New York Times.

Perhaps he could ask himself why Donald Trump wants him to run. There is a certain sense to one concluding that if your opponent really thinks there are more formidable candidates than you there might be some truth to this. In fact, this might be one of the only true things Trump has ever said.

This is part of what The New York Times wrote on July 7th in "Trump Stays Quiet (Relatively), Hoping Biden Stays in the Race:"

Mr. Trump, rarely one to shy away from sharing his opinion, has not been fully silent since last week’s debate, giving a handful of radio interviews and keeping up a steady stream of posts and videos on his social media platform, Truth Social. But Mr. Trump has largely sat back and allowed the Democratic Party to dominate the debate over Mr. Biden’s political future, in a signal of his preferred opponent.

The former president has spent months painting President Biden as incapable of leading, but he has let Democrats do the doubting when it comes to whether Mr. Biden should leave the race.

I think Biden will run. Well, that he probably will run, I keep going back and forth on this. I rather doubt he'd watch the Stewart segment or pay attention to what Bill Maher or Michael Moore says, but if he was more self-critical and self-aware he would. 

I may end up like all of his supporters and have to overlook his senior moments (in what I write unless there's a drastic decline) and stop pushing in my own small way for him to step down and hope his "senior moments" don't represent a clinical slide into dementia. All that has to happen is for him to win and then if he was unable to serve Kamala Harris would become president. I would hope he wouldn't deny his dysfunction (and he might) which would lead to the 25th Amendment being invoked.

I figure he's one major cognitive glitch away from having to step down or an accumulation of minor slips like his reading the speaking instructions off the teleprompter: he accidentally said "end of quote, repeat the line" as he finished a sentence. (see article). I don't know how serious a cognitive slip would have to be to derail his candidacy. 

In February Biden said in 2021 he confused French President Francois Mitterrand, who died in 1996, mistaking him for the current president Manual Macron. Of course this was prior to the disasterous debate.

Perhaps introducing a well known and incredibly popular person by the wrong name would be enough of a major slip to blow up his candidacy today. What would happen if Taylor Swift decided to endorse him? This would be headline news. Then what if she'd appeared in person with him at an event? What if he called her to the podium and then her called her Beyoncé? If you're a Swiftie this would be a major transgression, but to others it would show him to be in La-La Land.

If he froze for what would seem to viewers like an interminable seeming 10 or 15 seconds with a blank look on his face in the middle of sentence as he lost track of what he wanted to say that might be the major manifestion of a cognitive disconnect that would end his candidacy. How bad it was would be magnified if he then couldn't pick up on his original train of thought.

The LifeCall commercial from the 1980’s gave us the catchphrase “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up.” Biden could end up saying this.


You can read this and previous blogs on two websites and on Substack. One may look better than the other because of how the platforms present the page.

Read on the WordPress Stressline.org (you can subscrbe to this on the upper left)

or….

Read on the Google Blogger platform HalBrown.org This version has a Disquis comment section which makes it easy to post links and images.

or… Hal’s Substack where you can sing up to get an email when I post a new blog.



July 9, 2024

Biden, barring unforeseen events, will be the nominee. He may have a few small warts, but I'll stop quibbling about them. Trump, by contrast, is a bleeding boil beloved by a  boisterous band of brigands. Biden can craft a scapel sharp strategy to pierce the boil that is Trump. By Hal Brown, MSW

 

A Medical Metaphor

The only way to effectively deal with an bad boil is to get rid of its core. Assume Trump is the boil that Biden has to get rid of. (The following information is from the website Healthline.)

 As a boil matures, it grows larger, and its center fills with pus. This pus-filled center is called the core. Eventually, the boil comes to a head, meaning a yellow-white tip develops on top of the core. The recommended way to properly and safely get the core out of a boil is by having it opened by a medical professional. This is called lancing the boil.

Continuing on with the metaphor: Trump is the boil and Biden is the medical professional....

These are the first four steps Biden will have to accomplish:

  1. First, Biden could treat the area around the boil, Trump, with antiseptic. This is optional since we really don't care if Trump gets an infection, but Biden is kind so he'd probably to this. Besides, being nice to Trump before he sticks the lance in can get him to lower his guard.
  2. Before Biden makes a cut, he'd numb the area around the boil, aka Trump. This is important since he wouldn't want Trump to get his guard up. The safer he feels the better. In fact, it's best he feels over-confident. This would be like a sneak attack. Biden would want to make the cut before Trump even knew he'd been cut. 
  3. Then Biden would open the boil Trump by making an incision with a sharp instrument, such as a needle, lancet, or scalpel. This technique is also known as lancing.
  4. Biden would drain the Trump pus through the surgical incision. Additional incisions over time would be necessary because Trump is, like I wrote is a boil of Brobdingnagian proportions. Once this is accomplished even though Trump would deny he smells like a cesspool pus often has a foul oder. In Trump's case it would stink to high Heaven. Enough voters hopefully would eventually smell it and be turned off and see him for what he's aways been.

Following this procedure for a real boil the doctor would clean the cavity by irrigating, or flushing, it with sterile saline solution and dress the area. There's no reason for Biden to do this. Trump would go back to Mar-a-Lago and try to rage tweet any the infection until his next encounter with Biden when he goes under the the 81 year old surgeon's scapel again.

The more often this happens the more unbalanced Trump will be. Because he's a grandiose narcissist he will keep denying Biden has bested him. Underestimating the strength of one's opponent whether in actual warfare or poltical combat is a recipe for defeat.

More unsolicited advice for Biden:

Stop saying "here's the deal."

Stop using the lame "I may look 40" joke.

Use a good joke only once. Let social media do the work to spread it. For example ""My name is Joe Biden — I work for Kamala Harris" was a pretty good joke he used but I think "My name is Joe Biden — some people say I work for Kamala Harris" is better.

Self-effacing humor is the most effective especially in contrast with Trump who is incabable of making fun of himself.

These are adapted from the Reader's Digest:

Now that I’ve gotten older, everything’s finally starting to click for me. My knees, my back, my neck …

 I called the incontinence hotline recently. They asked if I could hold.

You know you’re getting old when your birthday cake is a fire hazard.

I know I'm getting old because my doctor referred me to an archaeologist.

Aging gracefully is a nice way of saying I'm slowly looking worse.

There's nothing wrong with stealing a joke as long as he gives credit. For example:

"I'm at an age when my back goes out more than I do." — Phyllis Diller

"You know you're getting old when you get that one candle on the cake. It's like, 'See if you can blow this out." — Jerry Seinfeld

Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter." — Mark Twain

"You know you're getting older when you're told to slow down by your doctor, instead of by the police." — Joan Rivers

"You know you're getting old when the candles cost more than the cake." — Bob Hope

"I'm very pleased to be here. Let's face it, at my age I'm very pleased to be anywhere." — George Burns

Addendum:

If you have 17 minutes I recommend watching this Jon Stewart segment. 

This is what Jacques Berlinerblau, MSNBC Columnist and Georgetown University professor wrote about Jon Stewart's take on Biden running: Jon Stewart’s ‘told you so’ about Biden was the scolding we needed.

Biden has lost the NY Times and now he's lost Jon Stewart for the same reasons.  He's lost Bill Maher too. He's lost Michael Moore. He's going to be our candidate regardless of what celebrities say. Well, probably, I keep going back and forth on this. I rather doubt he'd watch the Stewart segment or pay attention to what Bill Maher or Michael Moore says but if he was more self-critical and self-aware he would. He's probably going to be our candidate regardless. Well, probably, I keep going back and forth on this. I rather doubt he'd watch the Stewart segment or pay attention to what Bill Maher says but if he was more self-critical and self-aware he would. 

I will be like all of his supporters and have to overlook his senior moments (in what I write unless there's a drastic decline) and stop pushing in my own small way for him to step down and hope his "senior moments" don't represent a clinical slide into dementia. All that has to happen is for him to win and then if he was unable to serve Kamala Harris would become presdient. I would hope he wouldn't deny his dysfunction (and he might) which would lead to the 25th Amendment being invoked.

I figure he's one major cognitive slip away from having to step down or an accumulation of minor slips like his reading the speaking instructions off the teleprompter: he accidentally said "end of quote, repeat the line" as he finished a sentence. (see article). I don't know how serious a cognitive slip would have to be to derail his candidacy. Perhaps introducing a well known person by the wrong name. What would happen if Taylor Swift decided to endorse him in person and he called her to the podium and then called her Beyoncé? 

If he froze for what would seem to viewers like an interminable seeming 10 or 15 seconds with a blank look on his face in the middle of sentence as he lost track of what he wanted to say that might be the major manifestion of a cognitive disconnect that would end his candidacy. How bad it was would be magnified if he then could pick up on his original train of thought.

You can read this and previous blogs on two websites and on Substack. One may look better than the other because of how the platforms present the page.

Read on the WordPress Stressline.org (you can subscrbe to this on the upper left)

or….

Read on the Google Blogger platform HalBrown.org This version has a Disquis comment section which makes it easy to post links and images.

or… Hal’s Substack where you can sing up to get an email when I post a new blog.

July 8, 2024

The mysterious Trump "theys". Do they even exist? Plus Joe and Mika do a better interview than Stephanopoulos. Biden shows defensive lack of self-awareness. By Hal Brown, MSW

I had a reaction to the article shown above in RawStory (link). It decribed a discussion on Morning Joe from this morning.

Joe Scarborough pounced on the fact that Biden hasn't been afraid to get out in front of crowds while Trump has been nowhere to be seen. He didn't mention the tsunami of rage posting on Truth Social. He said that Trump's advisers are afraid to put him out there for fear he'll start on a crazy rant. 

From RawStory, with my bold:

Sitting next to co-host Mika Brzezinski, Scarborough began, "Where is he? Why are they hiding him? Are they afraid that he may go out and talk about World War II coming or Barack Obama being president, or will he go, 'Ah, ya ya ya'"

Continuing in that vein, he exclaimed, "Are they afraid to let him talk? Allies are going, 'Oh, Joe Biden, what are they hiding? What are they scared of?' And Donald Trump, he's burrowed down in Mar-a-Lago, theywon't let him out. He's a prisoner in a gilded cage because they're afraid he may actually open his mouth. The irony."

"So what are they doing with Donald Trump?" he asked. "They're keeping him out of sight until the Republican convention maybe — who knows?" he added. "Maybe his handlers, maybe his bosses will let him out this week, but right now, they're saying 'No, no, man, you have to stay right there. You can't talk, people hate you, independents hate you, swing voters hate you. Just be quiet, and you may win this thing again.' It's kind of crazy."

Who are the “they” who can do this to Trump? Who are his bosses and his handlers? If he had them they’d be like my mother was with my grandfather. He who lived with us and did something that was dangerous. After driving my father - who never learned to drive - someplace my mother was told he drove the wrong way down a one way street and people were honking and waving at him said he said happily “they know me, they know me.” My mother took his license away and never let him drive our car again. She was the "they" able to control an aspect of my grandfather's behavior. 

He was a lovely man but he was too old and perhaps in the very early stages of dementia so it was unsafe for him to be behind the wheel of a car.

Trump only drives a golf cart where he's unlikely to hurt himself or anyone else, but who can take Trump’s cell phone away and keep him from crazy posting on Truth Social and stop him from calling the media or having rallies? I want names! 

I don't think there is any human being who can tell Trump what to do unless you want to believe he really has been a Manchurian candidate (or Moscow candidate) and Putin has something he can use to blackmail him, or worse, send him to the Mar-a-Lago down under:

And then there's President Biden:

Later this morning Presdient Biden called in to Morning Joe. He sounded fine but didn't give a forthright answer to Joe asking about a previous repsonse to the question about how he would feel if he lost. He gave the same answer. He said that losing wasn't an option. He didn't say simply what I think Joe was giving him an opportunity to say. He could have, and should have, said "I would feel awful and fearful for the fate of democracy in the country we love so much."

In response to Mika's question abut his cognitive ability and a need to take a neurological test he again touted his past accomplishments and when she said that if she or someone she knew had a night like he did at the debate she thought a neurological assessment would be in order. Here, again, Biden deflected. 

Any clinician will tell you that past accomplishments aren't diagnostic when it comes to assessing a patient's current congitive condition except as they show what a person was as compared to what they are in the present.

Mika did an excellent job holding Biden's feet to the fire when she asked about all the people saying he should step aside. "I dont care what those big names think"was his response. Again, this lacked self-awareness and candor. He could have, and I think should have said, that he respects these people and he's only human and of course their opnions bother him. Instead he said "I am not going to explain anymore about what I should or shouldn't do, I am running."

I can't say I saw signs of demientia or a significantly aging brain from this interview. What I did see was defensiveness and a lack of candor which to me is indicative of a lack of self-awareness.

Given every chance to address the issues raised by his debate performance Biden defiantly deflected the questions which could have been answered by saying how dismayed he was by this. He could have said "Mika, Joe, I wouldn't be human if this didn't cause me a lot of distress."

Trump is an egomaniac. In this interview Biden showed himself to be egotistical. Trump has absoultely no self-awareness. Biden is demonstrating blind-spots in awareness of his weaknesses. Consider what psychological blind spots are:

Blind spots in psychology are hidden areas of our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors that can negatively impact our decision making and relationships. These blind spots are often caused by cognitive biases and defense mechanisms, making them difficult to identify on our own.  Reference

This doesn't alarm me as much as it saddens me.

Trump has no empathy. Biden has a surplus of empathy. But he is demonstrating that he has diffculty looking critically at himself. Instead of being open to saying he responds like most people do to being attacked by people he respects he either changes the subject or dares them go against him by seeing if they can mount a successful challenge at the convention.

It is very telling that in the Stephanopoulos interview he said he never watched a replay of the debate. If you did a recorded presentation which was widely panned wouldn't you want to view it to see where you went wrong? 

I wrote an entire blog about this here.

Addendum:

I may see the importance of self-awareness differently than many people. I was an insight oriented psychotherapist for 40 years. I often focused on helping clients look inward and gain self-awareness. Overcoming their resistance to doing this was frequently a challenge especially if self-esteem was built on seeing themselves in less than realistic ways. Admitting to parts of yourself you'd rather not see can cause anxiety but ulimately is part of personal growth or what is sometimes called self-actualization.

You can read this and previous blogs on two websites. One may look better than the other because of how the platforms present the page.

Read on the WordPress Stressline.org

or….

Read on the Google Blogger platform HalBrown.org This version has a Disquis comment section which makes it easy to post links and images.

July 7, 2024

Prof. Alan Lichtman has a Plan B to save the Democrats from a chaotic convention if Biden decides not to run. Instead of announcing it, he should resign. By Hal Brown, MSW

 

A professor who has accurately called every US presidential election since 1982 has weighed in on this election.. In this article, , Should Biden step aside? Election predictor Allan Lichtman talks ‘Plan B’ he addresses concerns about incumbent and looks at the potential of Kamala Harris. He was on MSNBC this morning discussing this.

he convention to select a "Jed" Bartlett as candidate, I wrote that I thought Gavin Newsom would make a better candidate than Kamala Harris. If Biden did resign for this scenario to play out the Democrats would have to assure that their convention did not turn into chaos. Lichtman writes:

“If he resigns, not just steps aside from the candidacy, she retains the incumbency key and if he instructs all the delegates to support Kamala Harris, which he can, she would also retain the party contest key, and that is by far, the best Plan B,” he said, before pivoting to what he felt was less-than-ideal situation.

I disagree. I think they should go back what would now be smokeless backrooms to hash out who would be the strongest candidate to beat Trump.That person should be nominated on the first ballot.

The following is from his profile on Wikipedia:

Allan Jay Lichtman (⫽ˈlɪktmən⫽; born April 4, 1947) is an American historian. He has taught at American University in Washington, D.C., since 1973.

Lichtman created the Keys to the White House model with Soviet seismologist Vladimir Keilis-Borok in 1981. The model uses 13 true/false criteria to predict whether the presidential candidate of the incumbent party will win or lose the next election.[1] Using this model, Lichtman has accurately predicted the winner of every U.S. presidential election since 1984, with the exception of 2000,[2] although he did forecast successfully that Al Gore would win the popular vote that year, and 2016, where he predicted Donald Trump would win, despite Trump's popular vote loss.[3][4][5] He ran for the U.S. Senate seat from Maryland in 2006, finishing in sixth place in the Democratic primary. In 2017, Lichtman published The Case for Impeachment, laying out multiple arguments for the impeachment of Donald Trump.[6][7][8]

At present he does not recommend that Biden drop out of the race. He thinks this would be a disaster leading to a chaotic convention and an ultimate Democratic loss. If pressure forces Biden not to run Lichtmant has a plan B. He writes in the cited article:

“He should resign the presidency for the good of the country, that would be greatly applauded by the American people.

“Kamala Harris, much younger, no issue about her mental sharpness would become president, that would check off the incumbency key, and Biden would release all his delegates to support Harris at the convention to avoid an internal party fight, and that would also check off the contest key.

“That is a much preferable Plan B, if in fact the spineless Democrats force Biden out of this race.”

When he predicted a Trump win in 2016 he recieved this note congratulating him:

The article continues:

As for the 2024 US presidential election, Prof Lichtman said he’s not ready to lock in a prediction yet, although his prediction system currently favours Mr Biden.

“I have not made final prediction,” he said several weeks ago during a live-stream on his YouTube page. “I hope to make it about the same time as I made it in 2020, which was August,” he explained.

Prof Lichtman has also been critical of recent polls, insisting that this far before elections, they hold little, if any predictive value.

“That's the same kind of mistake that led the pollsters and pundits to be so dramatically wrong in 2016, to be wrong in 1988 and to be wrong in 2012,” he said.

These are the 13 keys to win a presidential election (from another Wikipedia page). If five or fewer of the following statements are false, the incumbent party is predicted to win the election. If six or more are false, the incumbent party is predicted to lose.

  1. Party mandate: After the midterm elections, the incumbent party holds more seats in the U.S. House of Representatives than after the previous midterm elections.
  2. No primary contest: There is no serious contest for the incumbent party nomination.
  3. Incumbent seeking re-election: The incumbent party candidate is the sitting president.
  4. No third party: There is no significant third party or independent campaign.
  5. Strong short-term economy: The economy is not in recession during the election campaign.
  6. Strong long-term economy: Real per capita economic growth during the term equals or exceeds mean growth during the previous two terms.
  7. Major policy change: The incumbent administration effects major changes in national policy.
  8. No social unrest: There is no sustained social unrest during the term.
  9. No scandal: The incumbent administration is untainted by major scandal.
  10. No foreign/military failure: The incumbent administration suffers no major failure in foreign or military affairs.
  11. Major foreign/military success: The incumbent administration achieves a major success in foreign or military affairs.
  12. Charismatic incumbent: The incumbent party candidate is charismatic or a national hero.
  13. Uncharismatic challenger: The challenging party candidate is not charismatic or a national hero.

In my previous blog, Biden needs to withdraw, not designate a replacement, and allow the convention to select a "Jed" Bartlett as candidate, I wrote that I thought Gavin Newsom would make a better candidate than Kamala Harris. If Biden did resign for this scenario to play out the Democrats would have to assure that their convention did not turn into chaos. Lichtman writes:

“If he resigns, not just steps aside from the candidacy, she retains the incumbency key and if he instructs all the delegates to support Kamala Harris, which he can, she would also retain the party contest key, and that is by far, the best Plan B,” he said, before pivoting to what he felt was less-than-ideal situation.

I disagree. I think they should go back what would now be smokeless backrooms to hash out who would be the strongest candidate to beat Trump.That person should be nominated on the first ballot.

You can read this and previous blogs on two websites. One may look better than the other because of how the platforms present the page.

Read on the WordPress Stressline.org

or….

Read on the Google Blogger platform HalBrown.org This version has a Disquis comment section which makes it easy to post links and images.

Biden needs to withdraw, not designate a replacement, and allow the convention to select a "Jed" Bartlett as candidate, by Hal Brown, MSW



Above: There's more than a passing respembance between how these men and women look and how their hair styles are identical.

Read why Biden's interview with George Stephanopolous didn't change my mind about his needing to withdraw.

The Democrats need a made for TV candidate to win. Gavin Newsom fits the bill as a "Jeb" Bartlet clone.

While there's no doubt that Kamala Harris is well qualified to be president she's not an Elizabath McCord, the fictional presdient from "Madame Secretary" who went from being a high profile Secretary of State to being elected the first woman president. Biden, to his discredit especially considering his age, kept her in the background for his entire presidency. He should have known from the gitgo that a health issue could arise so he wouldn't be able to run again. Had he done this, Harris could have become like Elizabeth McCord and be well positioned to be the elected to be next president.

Now we have a politically wounded 81 year old president who if he was 10 years younger could easily run on his accomplishments even without comparing himself to an opponent who is a fat ranting profane 78 year old with signs of dementia who aspires to be a dictator.

Today's Joe Biden is no Josiah Edward "Jed" Bartlet , from "The West Wing" which ran for seven years. In terms of looking liking a TV or movie president, despite all his accomplishments, Biden never would have be cast to play a vigorous president saving the country or the world on a weekly basis on television today. Four years have taken a toll on him:

People age. As years pass they will look older. It is inevitable. No amount of plastic surgery or Botox will change this. There's no Egyptian cat statue with supposed magical powers like in "The Picture of Dorian Gray" which will age in the attic while you stay young.

Donald Trump never would have been elected had he not convinced voters that the fictional real estate genius he played on "The Apprentice" was real. At least the TV and movie star Ronald Reagan used his celebrity to become the Governor of California, a position he held for eight years.

There are enough Americans who will vote for someone who fits their pop culture inspired image of what a president should look like both in appearance and in how they speak to swing a close election like the one about to decide the fate of the nation. In 2020 you could say that Joe Biden looked more like Keifer Sutherland from the great president who saved the country in the series "Designated Survivor."

Above, Biden in 2020.

Unfortunately four years has taken a toll on President Biden. He was always good at being the president. He was never good at playing the president. He never will be. In order to defeat Trump we need someone who is really, really good at playing the president. Such a person is waiting in the wings in the same state where Ronald Reagan, the first show biz president, came from. His name, of course, is Gavin Newsom.

Biden should drop out without endorsing Kamala Harris. He should leave it to the convention to decide who the candidate most likely to defeat Trump is. If they are wise they will chose Newsom. He not only has star quality but has a great name. Gavin is a masculine name derived from Gawain, a medieval form of an Arthurian legend character. His last name, Newsom, suggests that he is new. Gretchen Whitmer would make an excellent vice presidential choice.

You can read this and previous blogs on two websites. One may look better than the other because of how the platforms present the page.

Read on the WordPress Stressline.org

or….

Read on the Google Blogger platform HalBrown.org This version has a Disquis comment section which makes it easy to post links and images.

Amazing! Trump just got some bigots pissed off. By Hal Brown, MSW

  I had to read the RawStory article shown above three times to figure out what happened. Trump was showing his supposed support for law enf...