Americans now find themselves in a position heretofore unmatched or even undreamt  of: the most dangerous person on the planet is the titular president of the United States, Donald Trump. Add to that horrific premise the fact that said president is under mounting stress as his actions come back to haunt him, and he finds out for the first time in 73 years of life, that he can’t simply buy his way out of trouble, and so he’s panicking; in “meltdown” mode as Nancy Pelosi characterized it. On one thing you may depend: it’s not going to get any better. Trump is going to get even nuttier, before our very eyes, with military heroes testifying against him, and his most favorable witness to date “being eyed for a perjury referral.” Watching Trump crash and burn is going to be Shakespearean. Chauncey DeVega, Salon:

The stress of impeachment and a looming sense that perhaps, after 70-plus years of life, he may face some accountability for his wrongdoing is apparently causing Donald Trump to retreat into a delusional alternate reality.

On Thursday, CNN described Trump’s response to the Ukraine scandal: “The President did what he often does when an unappealing political reality threatens: He simply invented a more advantageous one, launching misleading attacks on the conduct of the inquiry and picking new fights.”

On Wednesday, New York magazine reported that Trump is now making up quotes praising him, including one from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. [McConnell allegedly said, “That was the most innocent phone call I’ve ever read.”]

Trump’s apparent fabrication of McConnell’s quote is part of an increasingly common pattern in which he passes along praise from a third party that’s impossible to source and then gets called on it, typically by reporters and occasionally by the person who supposedly uttered the compliment. It’s a departure from Trump’s long-held habit of inventing quotes and attributing them to unnamed “anonymous validators,” or making up quotes that purportedly came from his political opponents.

Donald Trump’s personal consigliere, Attorney General William Barr, is undermining the rule of law and the U.S. Constitution by giving legal weight to absurd conspiracy theories that Trump is the victim of a “coup” by the Democrats, the FBI and Robert Mueller. Conspiracy theories are the bedrock of Trump’s alternate reality. Conservatives and their propaganda media provide outside validation for the president’s delusions. Collectively they are enablers of the Mad King.

Psychiatrist and former Harvard professor Lance Dodes weighed in on Trump’s mind set, what the Last Days of Trump might look like, and what would happen thereafter.

A key element in Trump’s enduring power is that his supporters are in love with him. He is a fantasy figure for the rank-and-file Trumpists, especially his famous “white working class” supporters. His supporters wish they could do all the horrible things Trump does without suffering any consequences. 

Yes. And they love him because they buy his Big Lie that he cares about them and will fight for them. The tragedy is that this is an intentional con, an exact reversal and concealment of the truth that Trump cares only for himself and his need to see himself as great. He does not care at all about them. The large version of that is that Trump does not care at all about America. His slogan, too, is exactly backward and would honestly be “Make Me Great, Again and Again.”

If Trump is forced from office, what will happen with his followers? Will they suffer a mass psychotic break? Do you think there will be violence?  

If Trump is actually ever forced out it will have to be with Republican support. Consequently, his supporters will have people in their own party to turn to, and they and their politicians will create a version of reality that they can live with. There will likely be a mass denial that they ever really supported Trump.

A lot of people have said that he won’t leave peacefully. I think that he will. He’s clever that way; he perceives it would not be in his personal interest to have to be carried out of the Oval Office by the FBI. His focus on his personal benefit at any cost is why he’s a successful sociopath.

My guess is that he will find a way to leave with an invented rationalization. He’ll say he was pushed out by the bad people: the Mexicans, the crooked media, etc. He’ll continue to portray himself as a victim, and he’ll encourage people to rally around him and, not incidentally, around his companies. He’ll maintain the near-psychotic view that he is not diminished at all but has been attacked by heathens. And a certain number of people will follow him.

Trump is now is his third year as president. At this point, how would you assess his mental health?

The more pressure Trump is under, the worse he gets, the more desperate he gets. Challenges are a fundamental threat to him, so Trump will become more and more panicked by them. He will do more and more impulsive things — really anything — and will look crazier and crazier because he’ll become more and more paranoid. The more people say to him, “You are the problem,” the more he’s going to say exactly the same thing to others. For example, as soon as people take seriously the idea of his being impeached, he uses the same word, he says those people should be impeached. Trump is acting like a very young child. But he can’t do any better than that.

In the end, if they finally get Trump out of office, he will declare that they’re all bad and that he’s the victim of a coup — which is what he has already said. Trump will leaves intact — in his own mind.  He retreats to his tower in New York and gathers around him all the people who are still loyal to him. Donald Trump will try to continue to scam the world in the future.

There’s little doubt but that Trump will try to keep his scams going. He’s way too old a dog to learn any new tricks. But in a post-Trump world, he will simply join the boy who cried wolf as the person with zero credibility that nobody even hears anymore, let alone listens to. A posterity in obscurity awaits him, and that is the one thing that he won’t be able to stand.

 

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32 Comments on "Psychiatrist Predicts That After Trump Is Gone, There Will Be ‘Mass Denial’ Of Ever Having Followed Him"

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underwriter505
Guest
I don’t know about the mass denial that they ever supported him. I realize it happened to Nixon. But Nixon’s position was always “I am not a crook,” and when at collapsed, he collapsed. Trump’s position is more like “Sure I’m a crook – so what?”and that is not going to collapse ever.I am afraid we’ll have serious problems dealing with his supporters, but I don’t believe we’ll have any trouble identifying them. Dr. Dodes makes a good, rational case for him leaving quietly. But I don’t think he’s capable of coming that close to rationality. If he absolutelly does… Read more »
Bareshark
Guest

I personally think the doc is on point. W went through a similar arc last decade and now they try to banish his memory the same Dems tried banishing LBJ from thought for many, many years. Trump is, I maintain, Bizarro Jimmy Carter, the last pure expression of a broken political coalition that is headed for the history books and have no real political muscle going forward.

Chris
Guest

What did Jimmy Carter do to make you call him Bizarro?

Bareshark
Guest

TRUMP is Bizarro to Jimmy Carter’s Superman, Chris. Like those two comic characters, Trump is Jimmy Carter’s ridiculous opposite but share one core similarity. In this case, the similarity is that they both represent the end of a political era, Carter the end of New Deal/New Frontier/Great Society and Trump the end of Morning In America/Kinder, Gentler America/War On Terror.

p j evans
Member

There are a lot of examples of cults where they have to choose between reality and maintaining their beliefs in the leader. It’s hard to predict how any individual will choose, but there will be people who stick with it.

lauran
Member

Do you think there’s a chance *Rump will throw McConnel and Barr under the bus as he voluntarily/under duress leaves the WH before the end of his term? Will he give Melania time to find the family jewels and her son Barron before getting on the plane to Russia? Just wondering…

Bareshark
Guest

Answer #1: Bet on it. As nothing is ever his fault, McConnell and Barr will be ideal scapegoats for his “unjust” departure. Answer #2: Melania will make her own time when it comes to a getaway. THIS Eva Braun is not following her man’s path of self-destruction, I’d wager. I doubt it’ll be Russia she goes to, though.

lauran
Member

Would you bet on Slovenia or Malta? :)))

Bareshark
Guest

I understand Slovenia is very nice this time of year. 😉

p j evans
Member

She may stay here, as her parents are here.

Liz
Guest

The best scenario would be for him to resign at this point. I don’t think he’ll leave willingly, but I don’t believe he’ll be violent or need to be removed by force. He’ll do a victory speech (rant) and then depart “dramatically” much in the way that Nixon raised both arms with the “v” finger/hand sign at the entrance of the helicopter. It was jarring to see. Sad, really.

As for denial, a lot of that happened with Nixon followers too.
Thank you, Ursula.

Bareshark
Guest

W followers too, Liz…when the two terms were up and the Great Recession sinking in its fangs, most everybody pretended he never existed. And Republicans have only been letting him out of the house in extremely controlled venues since.

lauran
Member

The handlers sure screwed up on World Series night. Sheeesh! But, on the other hand I’m sure the boos can be interpreted for *Rump by the handlers as: “They were chanting you, you, you….and the sound system had a glitch and the HIM in the “Lock HIM up” chants were actually chants of “Lock her up”. We’ll make sure the sound system is working right for your next public appearance.

Liz
Guest

Agreed.

Bareshark
Guest

No disrespect to the doc, but the words “Trump” and “clever” do not belong together in the same sentence. While I agree he will eventually fold his hand (which he always does under the right amount of pressure), he will have made the GOP toxic for a generation or better in the process. And it STILL won’t stop him from the SDNY going after him.

Markm Mitchell
Member

Trump may pull a Nixon, but he will end up in jail.

ReaderRay
Guest
I’ve been saying for the last 18 months that, eventually, most trump supporters will deny ever supporting or voting for him. Already two of my neighbors denied voting for him when I asked them if they still thought he was doing a good job. When I reminded them of conversations we had about how happy they were to vote for trump instead of evil Hillary they told me I had misunderstood them. I told them it’s ok to change your mind when you get new information but it’s cowardly and dishonest not to own up to it. I also said… Read more »
Bareshark
Guest

I wouldn’t be surprised if they did something similar with W after he was gone. My part of TN is just as ruby red and I can tell that W stopped being mentioned at all after, let’s say, 2010. Everyone now pretends that he never existed around here.

pericles writes
Member
Let’s not focus on how the Republicans ‘should’ feel after Trump goes/forced to go…what’s important is that he is made to go. Just as the Republican Party continues to near-deify Ronald Reagan who drove America into debt it has never recovered from, they will make Trump an idol-martyr whose wonderful bag of potential promises was wrecked before he got it rolling. Duplicity, ‘traitorous’ dealing with America’s enemies, lying…all show how clever he was in combating the Dem Self-enrichment, nepotism, money laundering, etc…what America should expect to pay for the services of a ‘successful’ businessman who could have made far more… Read more »
Bareshark
Guest
If things are as bad when Trump goes as I suspect they will be, no, the GOP will not do that. Trump is the political equivalent of a barbarian king who usurped their throne through force of will, unlike Reagan, who paid his dues as California’s governor. Now we are less respected in the world, our international agreements are in shambles and we have just endured the most public and humiliating retreat of the US military since the fall of Saigon. Add in how bad the job market is tanking, kiddie concentration camps and the total void of GOP leadership… Read more »
Hal Brown, MSW
Guest
Excellent article as usual. I appreciate all your efforts to publicize why Trump is mentally unfit to be president and how he influences his sycophants. In a somewhat lighter vein, I agree with everything you wrote except him retiring to Trump Tower. There are two possible reasons he won’t. One, New York City will be decidedly unwelcoming to him. If boos and “lock him up” chants at the World Series bothered him consider what would happen every time he tried to exit Trump Tower. The other reason is that Melania may have gotten possession of the building and apartment in… Read more »
Joyce Murdock Feilke
Guest

I disagree that his followers “love” him…unless we can call it “twisted” love….They appear to have more of a trauma bond….like that of his son Don Jr who was abused by him…Victims of narcissistic abuse have that same behavior toward their abuser…blind obedience and loyalty of a bondage bond. I think his followers possess a cult like folie á plusierus. I think we should say his followers are loyal and obedient based on unconscious fear rather than love.