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Sunday, August 7, 2016

Trump: A Narcissist Blames the System For His Failure


 

“Blame is a natural place to go when confronted by a narcissist 
being a narcissist.”

--Melissa Schenker

In an effort to change his falling voter approval ratings, Donald Trump is now casting doubt on the prospect of fair elections in November. This past week he has been predicting that the election could be “rigged” against him. He's labeled the mounting polls showing him trailing Clinton as "phony" and warned that voter fraud could steal the election from him.

Donald Trump is a desperate narcissist. He hopes this criticism will prompt his supporters to reject the possibility of a Hillary Clinton victory in the fall as fraudulent. Instead of blaming himself for the offensive comments and missteps he seemingly makes on a daily basis, he shows the true colors of his narcissism – he blames, blames, and blames over and over and over. Trump spews caustic comments without thinking of the consequences. There is no cure for his narcissistic behavior.

Sam Vaknin, author of Malignant Self-love: Narcissism Revisited and Editor-in-Chief of Global Politician, explains the actions of the narcissist ...

“To put it plainly, the (average) narcissist is unable to answer the question: 'Why did you do what you did?' or 'Why did you choose this mode of action over others available to you under the same circumstances?' These decisions are taken unconsciously. 

“But once the course of action is (unconsciously) chosen, the narcissist has a perfect grasp of what he is doing, whether it is right or wrong and what will be the price others are likely to pay for his actions and choices. And he can then decide to reverse course (for instance, to refrain from doing anything). On the one hand, therefore, the narcissist is not to blame – on the other hand, he is very guilty.

“The narcissist deliberately confuses responsibility with guilt. The concepts are so close that the distinctions often get blurred. By provoking guilt in responsibility-laden situations, the narcissist transforms life with him into a constant trial. Actually, the continuous trial itself is the punishment. 

“Failures, for instance, induce guilt. The narcissist always labels someone else's efforts as 'failures' and then proceeds to shift the responsibility for said failures to his victim so as to maximise the opportunity to chastise and castigate her. 

“The logic is two-phased. First, every responsibility imputed to the victim is bound to lead to failure, which, in turn, induces in the victim guilt feelings, self-recrimination and self-punishment. Secondly, more and more responsibilities are shifted away from the narcissist and onto his mate – so that, as time goes by, an asymmetry of failures is established. Burdened with less and less responsibilities and tasks – the narcissist fails less. It preserves the narcissist's sense of superiority, on the one hand – and legitimizes his sadistic attacks on his victim, on the other hand.”

(Sam Vaknin. “Narcissistic Blame Game - The Guilt of Others.” selfgrowth.com.)

Melissa Schenker, principal of the Work/Life consulting firm and MBA from M.I.T., puts the blame in perspective. She says ...

“Blaming a narcissist for behaving like a narcissist is like blaming a tree for behaving like a tree. If you get angry that the tree drops it’s leaves in fall, who suffers — you or the tree? If you get frustrated that the tree is late in budding in spring, who suffers — you or the tree? Of course, you.”

In my opinion, trying to reason with a narcissist like Trump is wasted time. GOP leaders have attempted to rein in their presidential candidate with no success. They understand he will continue to act predictably like the narcissist he is. Managers of Trump's campaign realize that letting him continue his abrasive and sarcastic actions is inevitable. So they figure why not intensify the only course available and heighten the blame game to question the very foundations of democracy.

"They are setting up a 'throw your hands in the air' scenario, saying that winning the election is just unattainable because it's rigged in favor of Hillary Clinton, therefore preserving the support of millions of voters that like him to keep them motivated for another race or whatever comes in the future," GOP strategist Ron Bonjean said.

(Ben Kamisar. “Trump casts doubt on electoral system.” MSN News. August 07, 2016.)


Of course, many Republicans have dismissed Trump's claims entirely, arguing that Trump's biggest stumbling block is his own campaign missteps.

At the same time, Trump's irresponsible blame has the potential for violence. There is already a history of Trump predicting such behavior while washing his hands for the blame even after he instigated it. In March, he told CNN that if he didn't win the Republican nomination "I think you'd have riots," warning that a contested convention would lead to chaos in the streets.

"Given the history of Trump rallies there is some potential for violence. I don't think that's unreasonable to worry about," said Claremont McKenna College Professor John Pitney, a former Republican campaign operative. "To some extent we're in uncharted waters. What happens when the loser is calling millions of followers to deny the legitimacy of the outcome? It's hard to tell what will happen but nothing good can come of that."

Other Republicans aren't worried so much about violence but more about what damage Trump is causing to American's trust in government and faith in fair elections.

"The system is hurt when people like him constantly degrade it," said former Sen. Norm Coleman (R-Minn.), who doesn't plan to vote for Trump."But I'm not worried about rioting in the streets. Americans are better than that. We'll get through this election, one way or the other, and democracy will continue."

(Cameron Joseph. “Donald Trump ‘afraid the election’s going to be rigged’ after his poll numbers plummeted since Gold Star family attacks.” New York Daily News. August 06, 2016.)

Without a doubt, Donald Trump has problems with feeling guilt. His narcissism causes him to place blame for his shortcomings on other people instead of upon on himself. This also causes him to cross lines and to be abusive to innocent people, often those with little ability to defend themselves. When confronted with his bad behavior, Trump employs the narcissistic tactic of telling opponents he “can't believe how upset some people can be over such a trivial thing.”

Trump feels any opposition is dangerous because it wounds his inflated ego. He believes that these injuries are inflicted by “bad people” and that such insolence requires an aggressive, impulsive response, no matter how injurious the consequences. On rare occasions, Trump will accept blame but only if it can be seen as a magnanimous gesture. This is classic, text book narcissistic behavior.

The Mayo Clinic’s definition of Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) is: “A mental disorder in which people have an inflated sense of their own importance, a deep need for admiration, and a lack of empathy for others. This description fits Donald Trump. Now, once again, he is using blame for his own inadequacies -- only this time he is irresponsibly lashing out at the system he claims to have allowed him win after win. In short, this is desperation.

Trump lives not just for approval but for adoration, and he is willing to damage the electoral system to gain power and prestige. Oh, he will tell people he is an “outsider” and the playing ground is not level, but shouldn't a self-professed underdog be fighting any perceived injustices rather than blaming the system in which he has so willingly immersed himself?

Charles Krauthammer – American Pulitzer Prize-winning syndicated columnist, author, political commentator, and physician – says “to understand Trump, you have to grasp the General Theory: He judges every action, every pronouncement, every person by a single criterion -- whether or not it/he is 'nice' to Trump.”

Krauthammer continues ...

“Trump's greatest success -- normalizing the abnormal -- is beginning to dissipate. When a Pulitzer Prize-winning liberal columnist (Eugene Robinson) and a major conservative foreign policy thinker and former speechwriter for George Shultz under Ronald Reagan (Robert Kagan) simultaneously question Trump's psychological stability, indeed sanity, there's something going on (as Trump would say).”

(Charles Krauthammer. “Beyond-narcissistic Trump lives for adoration. Sioux City Journal. August 07, 2016.)

Why does Trump do what he does? Why does he now recklessly blame the electoral system? As his success wanes, Trump is doing exactly what is expected of a narcissist. He is going to his “natural place” of blame. He confuses responsibility with guilt and blames everyone else for his own failures.

 
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