Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Looking Presidential

I’ve been watching Presidential Election Debates since 1959. I’ve always found them remarkable until this year!
by Charlie Leck

You know, I’ll never forget the Presidential Debates between Kennedy and Nixon (you thought I was going to say Lincoln and Douglas didn’t you?). I feel that old lately, but I’m not quite there yet. They were very serious debates and very well done. Kennedy won those debates but not on his debating skill or his knowledge. Nixon couldn’t shake his nerves and he looked shaky and nervous (with sweat on his upper lip) even though he provided skilled and thoughtful answers to the moderator’s questions. Nixon lost the debate because of that shakiness and nervousness.

Over the years politicians have come to realize that there is one remarkable advantage to be gained at the presidential debates – one! The candidate who looks most presidential and in control of himself (now also herself) will win in the public’s eyes.

Need I tell you that Donald Trump has failed at looking presidential – completely and overwhelmingly?

Instead, Donald Trump has looked foolish and silly! His unmistakable narcissism has shown through glaringly and a number of highly regarded psychologists have written about this negative character trait in trump. Though he tries not to show it, and certainly won’t admit to it, Donald Trump is not a person secure in his own skin. Donald Trump has deep seeded psychological problems. That’s not my analysis, but it comes from qualified observers.

For instance, read this incredibly remarkable and thorough article by Dan P. McAdams in the June, 2016 issue of The Atlantic: http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2016/06/the-mind-of-donald-trump/480771/

It’s only one of a half-dozen significant pieces I’ve read about the behavioral conduct of the man, Donald Trump. He’s an odd and strange fellow. He craves attention and he craves excessively sexy women. He doesn’t really know how to negotiate. He insists on dominating – and that includes in business dealings that should contain some sense of compromise and agreement.

Across his lifetime, Donald Trump has exhibited a trait profile that you would not expect of a U.S. president: sky-high extroversion combined with off-the-chart low agreeableness.
The above are not attributes one would want in a President of the United States of America!

“The psychologists Steven J. Rubenzer and Thomas R. Faschingbauer, in conjunction with about 120 historians and other experts, have rated all the former U.S. presidents, going back to George Washington, on all five of the trait dimensions. George W. Bush comes out as especially high on extroversion and low on openness to experience—a highly enthusiastic and outgoing social actor who tends to be incurious and intellectually rigid. Barack Obama is relatively introverted, at least for a politician, and almost preternaturally low on neuroticism—emotionally calm and dispassionate, perhaps to a fault.
McAdams has spent some significant time looking at the Tweets of Donald Trump. Mr. Trump is a compulsive tweeter and the things his said through that mechanism are very revealing. One of the revelations in his tweets is that Donald Trump is constantly in need of approval and praise and suffers abnormally under criticism.

And, Donald Trump is a very, very aggressive personality type.

As a businessman, Trump is a known risk taker. The number of his failures hasn’t seemed to faze him. He is of the mind that risks – serious risks – must be taken in order to succeed. How would that work in crisis moments if he was the President of the United States of America?


In something of summary, McAdams writes…

“In sum, Donald Trump’s basic personality traits suggest a presidency that could be highly combustible. One possible yield is an energetic, activist president who has a less than cordial relationship with the truth. He could be a daring and ruthlessly aggressive decision maker who desperately desires to create the strongest, tallest, shiniest, and most awesome result—and who never thinks twice about the collateral damage he will leave behind. Tough. Bellicose. Threatening. Explosive.
Are any of these characteristics you would seek in a President of the United States of America?

Yet, McAdams isn’t nearly finished with analyzing Trump! He goes on! You must read it. It is a damning report on the character and characteristics of Donald Trump.

I won’t spoil any more of McAdam’s descriptions of the mind of Donald Trump. I’ll let you go to the article and enjoy the marvelous writing and conclusions that he makes about Trump’s fitness to be the President of the United States of America!



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