Pathological narcissism is a disorder described by the American Psychological Association’s Diagnostic Statistical Manual IV describes as “A pervasive pattern of grandiosity (in fantasy or behavior), need for admiration, and lack of empathy, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts, as indicated by 5 or more of the following:
- Has a grandiose sense of self-importance.
- Is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love.
- Believes that he or she is “special” & unique & can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people or institutions.
Requires excessive admiration.
- Has a sense of entitlement, i.e., unreasonable expectations of especially favorable treatment or automatic compliance with her expectations.
- Is interpersonally exploitative, i.e., takes advantage of others to achieve his/her own ends.
- Lacks empathy: is unwilling to recognize or identify with the feelings & needs of others.
- Is often envious of others or believes that others are envious of him/her.
- Shows arrogant, haughty behaviors or attitudes.”
Even during the 2008 presidential campaign, there were those who tried in vain to warn Americans that the man of many names with whom they’re so besotted, Barack Hussein Steven Dunham Soetoro Obama, is a pathological narcissist.
Examples of Obama’s narcissistic arrogance and sheer grandiosity abound. After he was elected President and his Demonrat Party won control of Congress, Obama dismissed the two-party system, the concept of the loyal opposition, and America’s founding principle of checks and balances when he declared to Republicans upset with the $787 billion
stimulus porkulus package: “Deal with it. I won, you lost.”
Then there is what Obama told Rep. Marion Berry about the looming midterm elections in 2010. Increasingly worried about how Democrats would fare on November 2, Berry and others pleaded with the White House not to force Blue Dogs (southern Dems) “off into that swamp” of supporting bills that would be unpopular with voters back home. Berry recounted what happened to Jane Fullerton of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette:
“I’ve been doing that with this White House, and they just don’t seem to give it any credibility at all. They just kept telling us how good it was going to be. The president himself, when that was brought up in one group, said, ‘Well, the big difference here and in ’94 was you’ve got me.’
We all know what happened on November 2 — how empty Obama’s grandiose boast turned out to be.
One of the attributes of pathological narcissism is a lack of empathy.
Empathy is the ability to put ourselves in someone’s shoes and feel the emotions they’re feeling — an ability inherent in human beings. Babies as young as days old already display a primitive type of empathy (called “global empathy”) when they cry in response to hearing another baby cry. Empathy is what makes us human.
But not all humans display empathy. Psychologists have found that sociopaths/psychopaths or those with Anti-Social Personality Disorder (ASPD) lack empathy. I worry about anyone who does not have empathy, especially if this individual is president, commander-in-chief, and the most powerful man in the world.
As the disaster in Japan goes from bad to worse every day — with entire villages demolished by the 9.1 earthquake and the 32-ft tsunami that followed; thousands reported dead, more thousands missing; and half a million made homeless — there is human suffering on a scale unprecedented since World War II.
What is Obama’s reaction? A strangely affect-less statement, read from a prepared script (that someone else wrote for him), displaying not a whiff of emotion, even less of anguished empathy:
But Obama had no problem showing plenty of affect as he yucks it up at the Gridiron dinner. Well, at least he’s being consistent. As oil spewed from the floor of the Gulf of Mexico last year, Obama also yucked it up at the White House Correspondents’ dinner.
And as the situation with the damaged reactors in Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant deteriorates by the day — the latest being this morning’s report that those 50 heroic workers who had gone into the plant have retreated because of the radiation rising to a level too dangerous even for them — Americans are more and more worried that a core meltdown will release a radiation cloud that will be carried by the jet stream to the U.S. west coast.
What is Obama doing about all this, as the world falls apart? Party like it’s 1999!
As Keith Koffler of White House Dossier observes in “President Obama’s Trivial Pursuits,” March 15, 2011:
[A]s Japan’s nuclear crisis enters a potentially catastrophic phase, we are told that Obama is videotaping his NCAA tournament picks and that we’ll be able to tune into ESPN Wednesday to find out who he likes.
Saturday, he made his 61st outing to the golf course as president, and got back to the White House with just enough time for a quick shower before heading out to party with Washington’s elite journalists at the annual Gridiron Dinner.
With various urgencies swirling about him, Saturday’s weekly videotaped presidential address focusing on “Women’s History Month” seemed bizarrely out of touch.
Obama Friday took time out to honor the 2009-10 Stanley Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks. Thursday was a White House conference on bullying – not a bad idea perhaps, but not quite Leader of the Free World stuff either. Obama appeared a little sleepy as he weighed in against the bullies, perhaps because he’d spent the night before partying with lawmakers as they took in a Chicago Bulls vs. Charlotte Bobcats game.
Meanwhile, the president has been studying for weeks whether to establish a No Fly Zone over Libya, delaying action while the point becomes increasingly moot as Qaddafi begins to defeat and slaughter his opponents. And lawmakers from both Parties are wondering why he seems to be AWOL in the deficit reduction debate…..
But the fun stuff won’t end anytime soon. On Thursday, the Taoiseach of Ireland will be in town to help the president celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. And then Friday it’s off to Brazil for the start of a three-country Latin American tour.
I trust the 52.9% of American voters who had voted for this “man” with ice in his heart are happy with what they accomplished.
God help us….