The President is at the mercy of his condition. His diagnosis of
Psychopathic Personality Disorder (PPD) enables us to predict,
with a notable degree of precision, how he will exercise the duties
of the Presidency.
The formal assessment of Donald Trump places him in the moderate to severe range of psychopathic personality disorder (PPD), His disorder is extreme, rigid and immutable. PPD is a condition as differentiating and undeviating as a primary color. Yes, there are different shades of red, but no one should mistake red for blue or yellow. Code red is who he is, and thus where we are as a country.
The core traits of callousness, unyielding drive to dominate, and impulsive mode of functioning were never going to yield to the difficult realities of Covid-19 or the civil unrest triggered by the murder of George Floyd. Trump’s particular kind of disastrous response to these emergencies was unavoidable. Up close Trump is dramatic, flamboyant, irreverent and appears to be unpredictable. But, from 20,000 feet up, his behavior is very predictable, including his patterns of chaos. He may proclaim “total authority” to the country, but he is at the mercy of his hard-wired traits. A creature is going to do what a creature does.
How will his condition play out going forward? In broad strokes, we can count on the following outcomes:
- Because of his greater than normal need for stimulation and impulsivity, disruptions to the legal, financial, and administrative functions of our government will accumulate.
- In the exercise of his duties – at every choice point – power and dominance will prevail over the welfare of others.
- Because of his inability to process emotions related to danger, the government will be lax in response to threat situations.
- Because he is undaunted by fear of punishment, norms of trust and decency will continue to erode.
- His callous and remorseless disregard for the feelings of others means that vulnerable populations will remain at significant risk.
As the Covid-19 crisis and injection of authoritarianism into our body politic evolve, Trump’s set of destructive traits will drive his behavior. They will drive his behavior regardless of the damage, danger, or even the harm to his political standing. A creature is…
Donald Trump, the clinical psychopath, is like a car without brakes (no conscience) or steering (controlled, capable mode of self-direction), careening down the highway, petal to the metal (stuck in an accelerating drive to dominate gear). Whatever comes next (e.g. Covid numbers that further underscore the Administration’s disorganized response; another event that triggers civil unrest; the election) will be met head on with the expressions of these traits – lies, divisiveness, callousness, dereliction and recklessness. l would ask you to buckle up, but this car has no seatbelts.
PPD is a terrible affliction, one for which you would take a bullet to prevent your child from having. Sadly, there is no treatment for the pathogen of PPD. Anyone with this disorder, including the President, deserves mercy. And one expression of such mercy, certainly, would be to remove him from the body politic; and thus mitigate the damage inflicted by his virulent condition.