The frequency and blatancy of Donald Trump’s lies seem to be increasing under the pressures of the campaign. Sometimes the effect is so bizarre that one is tempted to think that Trump has a little internal Trump, a voice inside his head perhaps, that compels him irresistibly against his, or at least his handlers’ best judgement.
The Nile may be a river in Egypt, but Donald seems to have denial hardwired into every fiber of his being. Take these Trumpian recollections just around the debate:
. He didn’t sniff throughout the debate. It was a bad microphone, which he has alternately claimed didn’t carry his voice because it was too short, or was so sensitive that it created the illusion that he was sniffing. Which is it?
. A truly record breaking audience heard him clearly respond to a Clinton statement that perhaps he never pays federal income tax, “That makes me smart.” The very next day, he vehemently denied making any such statement.
This, in addition to the numerous documented lies he told during the debate, and the body count on his lies in general (roughly 70% of his statements), allow even amateur psychologists to venture a guess that his disaffection for the truth may be pathological.
He lies even about unimportant things, like the sniffing. He lies unstrategically, like a child, to protect his vanity; even when the truth is undeniably evident to all but his most loyal supporters.
Like the Emperor parading in his birthday suit, he has grown accustomed to sycophants indulging him in whatever fantasy flatters him most.
Watching a series of blonde female handlers, like Stepford wives, try to justify his whoppers makes the experience that much more surreal.
I am not a journalist, nor a doctor; I am nevertheless possessed of ordinary powers of observation. As it did to Dr. Howard Dean, it occurred to me, after about the twelfth sniff Sunday night, that Mr. Trump does indeed exhibit the signs of a cokehead.
After all, we have only his word that he never drinks or does drugs; and how good has that word proven to be?
Something is toodling around in that noggin of his, causing him to drift into the imaginary rather too frequently for a Presidential candidate.
If not coke, may I suggest (from an amateur standpoint, of course) that Mr. Trump’s “id” may be a fully formed second personality, wedded to the idea of an alternative reality?
He may well be a loving husband and father and a functional business person in the workaday world.
Much of the time, that second personality may be content to sit in the passenger seat as Trump’s ego struts its stuff; but when overcome by excitement or anxiety or a challenge to his manhood, it takes the wheel like a reckless child, driving the bus straight over the cliff.
Think of all those whacky conspiracy theories he’s flirted with or fully embraced. He has even created a conspiracy myth about general media bias to answer the evidence that lies in decades of his own recorded words.
Is that not worthy of scrutiny for clinical paranoia?
Mr. Trump is a whole different kind of candidate for President who refuses to be held to the standards of the past. He has absolutely no record of public service and refuses to open his personal records to satisfy basic questions of competency and trustworthiness. Ordinarily, that would be enough to raise an alarm among middle America, but his skill as a snake-charmer seems to have precluded that native caution.
“Gentlemen’s agreements” and custom must be replaced with definite rules regarding what standards candidates for the highest office in the land must satisfy in a timely manner.
These should certainly include financial records of their taxes and the taxes of any entities with which they are formally associated; and detailed medical records covering at least a decade. The rules should also require a psychological evaluation by an independent practitioner acceptable to both parties.
If the two parties survive to another general election (and I say that with only half a winking smile), it behooves them both to make this happen.