Cable star cites Lee's book: In our view, Lawrence O'Donnell got it right on his Last Word program last night.
On Saturday, Donald J. Trump had made a weird, weirdly endless speech at the annual CPAC convention. As he started a pair of segments about Trump's address, Lawrence cited a book which has been widely ignored:
O'DONNELL (3/4/19): The dangerous case of Donald Trump was once again on public display this weekend at the Conservative Political Action Conference.The actual number is twenty-seven, but then again who's keeping score?
"The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump" is a bestselling book in which 37 psychiatrists and mental health experts assessed the president of the United States. Those 37 mental health professionals began taking notes on Saturday before Donald Trump opened his mouth at CPAC.
In yesterday's post, we ourselves discussed The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump, a compilation of essays which was compiled by Yale psychiatrist Bandy X. Lee. The book explores the possibility that Trump is mentally ill, even dangerously so.
Given the way our press corps works, it would be extremely hard to have a serious discussion of such a challenging topic. But given the way Trump behaves—as in Saturday's endless speech—it seems to us that it may be dangerous not to conduct that discussion.
Last night, O'Donnell called attention to the widely-ignored book. For example, why did Trump start Saturday's speech by hugging the American flag?
"This book explains it," Lawrence said. "This book catalogs Trump`s serious mental impairments that are untreated and most likely impervious to treatment. This book explains what Donald Trump was doing on the stage on Saturday, better than any of the news reports of what he said."
Lawrence may well be right. As he continued, he quoted one of the high-profile psychiatrists who contributed to Lee's book:
O'DONNELL: Jerrold Post is now a professor of psychiatry, after serving 21 years in the CIA. He wrote the CIA's personal profile of Saddam Hussein. In this book, he writes "Trump has a mirror-hungry leader personality which feeds on the adoration of his followers."What is a "mirror-hungry leader personality?" Lawrence didn't explain. But in his second segment, he quoted Post again:
According to the psychiatrists who have been studying Donald Trump, and according to all the public evidence we've seen, the place Donald Trump goes for love is the CPAC stage and the Trump rally stages, where he stands out there alone, surrounded by thousands of strangers who he believes loves him and do indeed appear to love him. And Donald Trump has never even suggested that he looks for love anywhere else.
O'DONNELL: Since World War II, psychiatrists and social psychiatrists have been intently studying the relationship of leaders like Donald Trump and their followers.The word in question is "bullshit." Trump said the word two times in his speech. NBC policy wouldn't let Lawrence repeat it. He just had to show us the tape.
In The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump, the book that I mentioned, former CIA psychiatrist Jerrold Post writes, "The relationship between Trump and his hard-line followers represents a charismatic leader-follower relationship whereby aspects of the leader's psychology unlock, like a key, aspects like his followers' psychology."
And having unlocked them like a key, Donald Trump is now putting in their minds the words he wants them to say when Michael Cohen publicly testifies about Donald Trump committing crimes, or when the Mueller report comes out, or when the Democratic House committees continue to pile up incriminating evidence against the president.
There is one word that Donald Trump needs everyone at CPAC and all of his followers throughout the country to say all at the same time and he said it to them on Saturday...
According to Lawrence, Trump wants his supporters reflexively saying "bullshit" when the Mueller report comes out, or when Democratic-led committees conduct their investigations. Lawrence said Trump was priming his supporters last weekend. We'll assume that Lawrence is right.
That said, is there anything our own team is doing which might enable or reinforce such a strategy? We'll ponder that question this week.
Trump may be dangerous, Lee's book says. Is there anything our own tribe is doing which may be helping him out?