Showing posts with label Bandy Lee. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bandy Lee. Show all posts

December 12, 2022

The normalizing of delusional sociopathic grandiose narcissism

 The normalizing of delusional sociopathic grandiose narcissism
By Hal Brown

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I was a practicing psychotherapist for 40 years before retiring, the first 20 of those I work as the director of a small mental health center. I have posted numerous articles online about the dangerous psychopathology of Donald Trump. 

There are myriad examples of people in the news who demonstrate by their behavior, their actions and words, that they, to put it bluntly, have one or all of their hinges so loose that if they were the door on the jam it would be hanging and about to fall.

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I don't have to tax my brain by coming up with a list of clinically deranged people in public life. Just a look at the stories on various websites will provide many examples. A Salon article by one of my favorite columnists, Amanda Marcotte, this morning offers a list of five:

Of course these five are just losers even though Trump could actually become president again. We still have winners like Marjorie Taylor-Greene and Loren Boebert who are still in the House and now that the GOP controls it have even more power.

From Elon Musk whose unhingedness knows no bounds as he just yesterday tweeted "My pronouns are Prosecute/Fauci, a sentiment supported by said Rep. Greene who is saying that if she was in charge of the January 6th attack on the Capitol the crowd would have been armed (something that could end her in front of a grand jury), to Ye and Herschel Walker (who I wrote about here) 

There are enough people to be analyzed for in a PhD dissertation titled "Abnormal psychology as manifest in people in public life."

In some ways it is more disturbing to know that there are so many ordinary citizens who embrace the Big Lie and the conspiracy lunacy of QAnon. There are uncountable millions people not just in this country but around the world who, if objectively assessed by mental health professionals, would be diagnosed with one or more psychiatric conditions listed in the DSM-5.
There are several hundred diagnostic categories in the DSM  and new ones are periodically added, for example:

  • Binge Eating Disorder.
  • Caffeine Withdrawal.
  • Cannabis Withdrawal.
  • Disinhibited Social Engagement Disorder.
  • Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder- DMDD.
  • Hoarding Disorder.
  • Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder – PMDD.
 "According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), about one in five adults lives with a mental disorder (any mental illness in the US, and about one in 18 American adults has a serious mental illness. Some psychiatric conditions may be temporary, occur occasionally, and never return again." Reference includes entire list.

It should be obvious that most people with psychiatric disorders actually suffer, thus the term "suffering from" one or another disorder. There are other people who don't suffer themselves. They make  people in their lives including family, friends, and co-workers, suffer. Just consider the number of books about being married to a narcissist.

Of all of these the two most relevant disorders to consider when looking at the people I am writing about are what is now called antisocial personality disorder but is often referred to by the previous name, sociopathic disorder, and narcissistic personality disorder. Some people meet enough of the criteria for having both and would be considered to be malignant narcissists. This diagnosis never made it into then DSM but in my opinion and the opinion of many mental health professionals including, notably, Dr. John D. Gartner, the founder of the Duty to Warn society, Donald Trump has this disorder. Gartner wrote about this in 2017:
If any single person could be described as causing an extreme and dangerous mental pathology as becoming normalized it is Donald Trump.

Gartner is, as far as I know, the only mental health professional critical of Trump to appear on Fox News. In 2017 he was on "Watters World" in an interview which, to put it mildly, did not go well. Here's the video:


Full disclosure: Dr. Gartner and I have had a relationship since the formation of his Duty to Warn society. 

Currently the media, with some notable exceptions like MSNBC which regularly has clinical psychologist Mary Trump on and others experts discussing Donald Trump, reports the behavior of Trump and people like those mentioned above as if it is normal. 

I have followed the media closely since 2017 to see whether any mainstream publications addressed the issue of public figures like Trump, Taylor-Greene, Herschel Walker by interviewing mental health experts. 

Salon stands out for having Chauncey DeVega who often publishes interviews with mental health experts like psychiatrist Lance Dodes like "Trump is a dangerous sociopath — but he's sane enough to stand trial" and Psychiatrist Bandy Lee says White House officials told her Trump was "unraveling".

Of course, Salon with its progressive slant, can't be considered mainstream the way USA Today can. As far as I have been able to tell USA Today is the only widely circulated publication to publish a story about Trump's dangerous psychopathology.

It is about time that the mainstream media, including publications that the far right fringe considers to be fake news like The New York Times and The Washington Post, have regular columnists who are mental health experts who can analyze the behavior of public figures based on their knowledge of personality.

It is about time dangerous psychopathology stops being normalized by the media. It must be called out for what it is.

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September 27, 2022

Digby posits three reasons Trump stole the documents, I have a fourth

 

A psychological reason Trump might have stolen the top secret documents 

By Hal Brown 

Scroll down for articles that piqued my interest today





In Heather "Digby" Parton's Salon column she speculates on the following:

Why did he steal the documents? Maggie Haberman's book may hold the answer

Let's review: He's a pack rat; he hoped to sell them; he meant to use them for blackmail. Yes, yes and yes

Of course none of the reasons are mutually exclusive, but I propose a fourth possible reason:

There’’s plenty of speculation as to why Trump wanted to bring top secret documents home to Mar a Lago. I have yet to hear one that isn’t nefarious.  These include his wanting to sell them to foreign adversaries or curry favor with them, but I am posing a different reason just as consistent with his personality. If he wanted to use them to benefit himself in the former way it speaks to his being a traitorous sociopath. I suggest another possiblity. It is based on another aspect of his psychology. This is that he may have wanted to use them as trophies, either to enjoy by himself or to show off to select mucky-mucks who he wanted to impress. This speaks to his over-the-top pathological grandiose narcissism.


If he didn’t take them for evil reasons I lean towards his wanting to show them off because I don’t see Trump as the kind of wealthy person who is like the collector of illegally obtained fine art which he keeps in a vault where he enjoys just sitting by himself enjoying the work of the masters only he is able to look at.


Trump most likely knew he wasn’t allowed to take home gifts from foreign leaders to show off to his pals but figured that showing these off was no big deal (see From chess sets to model jets, foreign leaders lavish gifts on Trump White House) compared to flashing a document labeled Top Secret with the locations of our nuclear submarines on it. For example Chinese President Xi Jinping gave Trump a paper panel with five columns of calligraphy, valued at $14,400, that’s a big ho-hum.


Of course I may be totally wrong here, but then again sometimes a simple explanation is the right one. Both reasons are consistent with who we know Trump is.


My possible, emphasis on the word possible, reason is not as newsworthy as those being suggested. It doesn’t paint him as an evil traitor. In fact while it might be embarrassing to him to offer this as a defense should the case end up in court, it might be offered to exculpate him. It would be a kind of “not guilty by reason of pathological narcissism.”


On a personal note, I was friends with Biggie Munn’s daughter Jane when he was the athletic director of Michigan State University. She showed me the trophy room he had in his beautifully furnished basement. The walls of the room were lined with shelves and displays of fancy trophies which he or his teams had won dating back to when he was an All-American at the University of Minnesota through his coaching career, to when he eventually became athletic director at MSU. In one way or another he earned each and every one of them. None of them were stolen.


Articles that piqued my interest today

This article makes it sound like Bandy Lee was isolated among the community of mental health professionals. Of course there was a concerted effort to marginalized her in some quarters, but not enough media attention was given to those who agreed with her, and there were lots of us.
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As members of the Duty to Warn society like me know, this is not true. There were thousands of therapists saying in various ways the same thing. Some made a diagnosis (John D Gartner , myself, and others, a malignant narcissist, Lance Dodes, MD, a sociopath) and some not, but all saying he was dangerous.
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I viewed the reluctance to go public with an actual diagnosis was for some therapists as a way to avoid being accused of breaking the Goldwater Rule or subject to the criticism that one couldn't make a diagnosis without a clinical interview. It seems to be common sense that we have much more information about Trump's psychopathology than we would after a typical clinical assessment interview.
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We also have the observations of a family member the way we might when we interview a family member in some kinds of therapy, and in Trump's case this family member, Mary Trump, is a clinical psychologist.




Who will really be standing behind Biden in the State of The Union Address

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