DIAGNOSING PRESIDENT TRUMP: Gartner's assessment can't be discussed!

WEDNESDAY, APRIL 29, 2020

We simply don't work on that level:
Is it possible that Donald J. Trump is mentally ill? Dangerously so, perhaps?

Of one thing you can be sure—you'll never see that question discussed within our upper-end press corps. Here's what you'll see instead:

As we noted yesterday, you'll see major journalists hinting at such an idea. But they won't pull on their big boy pants and say what they actually mean.

On occasion, a Jennifer Senior will come along and raise this possibility in print. On April 6, Senior did so in the New York Times, but her column generated exactly zero discussion.

Such efforts never will.

Many journalists secretly think that something is seriously wrong with Trump—that he's psychiatrically or cognitively impaired. But they won't say such things out loud. As a people, we simply don't work on that level.

Is it possible that Trump is severely ill—that he is, in William Styron's phrase, one of "the beaten children of the Earth?"

You won't see that possibility discussed. Instead, you'll see what you continue to see today, what you've seen in recent days:

You see references to how "stupid" Trump is
, references to him as a "moron." You won't be asked to consider the source of his endlessly repeated, deeply peculiar claims.

Within our unimpressive upper-end guild, you won't see any such discussion—until the first N-bomb falls.

Into this somewhat childish world walks Dr. John Gartner, a psychotherapist who served for 28 years as a professor at the Johns Hopkins Medical School.

Way back in March 2017, Gartner cast himself in the Jennifer Senior role. He wrote a column for USA Today in which he assessed that President Trump was in fact—we'll speak colloquially—severely mentally ill.

Was Gartner's assessment that day correct? Absent further debate and discussion, we're poorly equipped to say.

But Gartner came forward again last week to state his case about President Trump. We think it's worth explaining why his interview with Salon isn't ready for prime time—why you'll never see a public discussion of the assessments Gartner advanced.

Gartner's assessments may well be completely correct—but you'll never see them discussed. Let's start with what he wrote for USA Today, back when Trump's presidency was still just a pup.

For now, we'll skip the first two paragraphs in that three-year-old column. A word Gartner used in his opening sentence made it impossible that his column could ever be discussed.

Instead, we'll start with his paragraph 3.

A word Gartner used in paragraph 3 also made his piece untouchable. Still and all, much of what he said that day will sound extremely familiar today. A prediction he cites from 2016 will perhaps seem prescient:
GARTNER (5/4/17): Much has been written about Trump having narcissistic personality disorder. As critics have pointed out, merely saying a leader is narcissistic is hardly disqualifying. But malignant narcissism is like a malignant tumor: toxic.

Psychoanalyst and Holocaust survivor Erich Fromm, who invented the diagnosis of malignant narcissism, argues that it “lies on the borderline between sanity and insanity.” Otto Kernberg, a psychoanalyst specializing in borderline personalities, defined malignant narcissism as having four components: narcissism, paranoia, antisocial personality and sadism. Trump exhibits all four.

His narcissism is evident in his “grandiose sense of self-importance … without commensurate achievements.”
From viewing cable news, he knows "more about ISIS than the generals” and believes that among all human beings on the planet, “I alone can fix it.” His "repeated lying," “disregard for and violation of the rights of others” (Trump University fraud and multiple sexual assault allegations) and “lack of remorse” meet the clinical criteria for anti-social personality. His bizarre conspiracy theories, false sense of victimization, and demonization of the press, minorities and anyone who opposes him are textbook paranoia. Like most sadists, Trump has been a bully since childhood, and his thousands of vicious tweets make him perhaps the most prolific cyber bully in history.

A year ago, I warned that “the idea that Trump is going to settle down and become presidential when he achieves power is wishful thinking.” Trump, like many successful people, shows biological signs of hypomania—a mild and more functional expression of bipolar genes that manifest in energy, confidence, creativity, little need for sleep, as well as arrogance, impulsivity, irritability and diminished judgment. As is often typical, when Trump has achieved great success, his hypomania has increased with disastrous consequences.
Gartner says this as that passage starts: "Much has been written about Trump having narcissistic personality disorder."

Indeed, that's the possible diagnosis suggested by Senior, three years later, in her column for the New York Times.

You could almost imagine that diagnosis being discussed in the upper-end press. As Gartner suggests, it almost sounds like something we've seen, and joked about, in our previous leaders.

We don't mean this, in any way, as a criticism of Senior, or of the editors at the Times who were willing to publish her column. But Senior is a journalist, and Gartner is a psychotherapist who has dealt with severe personality disorders for decades in his private practice.

Gartner is an experienced psychotherapist; he says the diagnosis of narcissistic personality disorder doesn't go far enough. Gartner says that Trump is a "malignant narcissist," and that one word has made all the difference.

Gartner's assessment may be completely correct. But that diagnosis could never be discussed by our upper-end press corps.

Is it possible that Donald Trump fits into the diagnostic sub-category of "malignant narcissism?" As far as we know, it is.

That said, some problems may quickly arise. For one example, the leading authority on psychiatry tells us this:
Malignant narcissism is a psychological syndrome comprising an extreme mix of narcissism, antisocial behavior, aggression, and sadism. Grandiose, and always ready to raise hostility levels, the malignant narcissist undermines families and organizations in which they are involved, and dehumanizes the people with whom they associate.

Malignant narcissism is a hypothetical, experimental diagnostic category. Narcissistic personality disorder is found in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV-TR), while malignant narcissism is not. As a hypothetical syndrome, malignant narcissism could include aspects of narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) alongside a mix of antisocial, paranoid and sadistic personality disorder traits.
Uh-oh! While Senior's diagnosis has been officially sanctioned, "malignant narcissism" is said to be an experimental diagnosis.

That would scare high-end scribes away. But so would an array of challenging words Gartner has used in discussing Trump, perhaps with perfect accuracy.

At the start of his piece for USA Today, Gartner seemed to describe Trump as "psychotic." In last week's interview with Salon, he describes the president as a "sexual sadist."

Within the world of our upper-end discourse, you're allowed to use words like stupid and moron, but you aren't allowed to use words like those when you're discussing a president. Gartner may be completely right in his assessment of President Trump. But there's zero chance that our upper-end journalists would ever link themselves to his work or quote and discuss what he's said.

In that sense, Gartner's assessment may be completely correct but, quite plainly, it's also not ready for prime time.

As we noted yesterday, our upper-end journalists are generally unwilling to discuss the concept of psychiatric disorder at all. They'll never take the chance of linking to a diagnosis in which terms like "sexual sadist," "democidal" and even "malignant" occur.

To quote Dana Carvey as President Bush, "Na ga do it." Our upper-end discourse is limited, childish. It simply won't visit such lands.

We have one more thought about Gartner's interview with Salon. There's one more reason why his assessment could never be discussed:

Gartner may be completely correct in his assessment of Trump. But he also sounds angry and judgmental concerning Trump, and especially within a psychiatric context, that isn't going to fly.

Is Donald F. Trump severely disordered in the ways Gartner describes? In our view, he certainly may be. (Tomorrow, we'll discuss the extent to which laypersons like us can understand such diagnoses at all.)

Is the president severely disordered in the way Gartner says? Is he a "malignant narcissist?" On that basis, is he a uniquely dangerous person?

In our view, he certainly could be. But if he is, then in our view, that makes him one of the "beaten children of the Earth." It makes him Bob Dylan's (metaphorical) "poor immigrant," a broken-souled (and dangerous) person for whom Dylan recommended pity.

Jennifer Senior made an excellent try. Even better, Gartner is a deeply experienced psychotherapist. That said, some suggestions are never going to fly, given the withered nature of our upper-end discourse.

The woods are lovely, dark and deep. But despite the self-flattering stories we persistently tell ourselves, our current intellectual culture is extremely limited.

Our upper-end stars will never go there. In our view, we'd have a better chance to get our ideas out if we tried a little tenderness—if, in Homer's dramatic words, we chose to beat back our great anger.

Tomorrow: Was Joseph Stalin mentally ill? What does that even mean?

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  2. Blah, blah, blah, dembots say Orange Man Bad.

    We're well aware, dear Bob. Why don't you concentrate real hard, and think of something new to tell us?

    ReplyDelete
  3. Every one of my ex boyfriends and my two ex husbands are malignant narcissists. So are my former best friends and my mother. I know it when I see it. This is what Trump is.

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    Replies
    1. Are you sure that you aren’t one of those “silent carriers”?

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    2. Narcissism can look like borderline personality disorder. How would you tell them apart?

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    3. My therapist told me my ex was a malignant narcissist. Almost all of my friends describe their exes that way. It's definitely real.

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    4. If you liked your ex, perhaps they wouldn't be your exes.

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  4. BTW Winston Churchill was truly mentally ill. He suffered from clinical depression. See Churchill's Black Dog and Other Phenomena of the Human Mind https://www.amazon.com/Churchills-Black-Other-Phenomena-Human/dp/0006375669/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=churchill%27s+black+dog&qid=1588176245&sr=8-1

    This example shows that how a leader leads is what counts.

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    Replies
    1. Go fuck yourself, you fascist prick. Don't ever again use the name Winston Churchill in the same sentence as Donald J Chickenshit - "I take no responsibility" - jackass.


      ************
      A Google search for “Churchill and Depression” produces page after page of articles and references to books that discuss Churchill’s alleged serious depression. There are those who believe he had Manic Depression (now known as Bipolar Disorder) and there’s another group who believe he suffered from Major Depression. The National Association for the Mentally Ill (NAMI) includes Churchill, along with Abraham Lincoln and Beethoven and Tolstoy to name a few, in their list of famous personages who lived with mental illness. NAMI specifies that this is a list of those who suffered with Bipolar Disorder and Schizophrenia.

      The literature on this topic is of two types. The first is by writers who are qualified to make a diagnosis but have superficial knowledge of Churchill. A recent example is Nassir Ghaemi’s A First Rate Madness (reviewed on page 44)—the premise of which seems to be that mental illness is present in many if not most great leaders. The second is by writers who are knowledgeable about Churchill’s life but have a superficial understanding of mental illness: John and Celia Lee’s recent book The Churchills, for example, flatly asserts in a footnote that Churchill was Bipolar. Either way, the myth of the “Black Dog” is central to their conclusions.

      As an art therapist working for twenty years in outpatient mental health, I have seen hundreds of patients who were Bipolar or had Major Depression, and children diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity (ADD-H). Churchill’s childhood and painting have long interested me. I presented a peer- reviewed paper for the American Art Therapy Association exploring my thesis that the young Churchill had ADD-H, and continued to cope with many of those traits in his adult life. I do not purport to examine Churchill’s medical minutiae, nor to propose that he never suffered from milder forms of depression. I do, however, object strongly to sweeping generalizations about his alleged Bipolar Disorder.

      More biographers should follow the example of one who spoke at the International Churchill Conference in Charleston, South Carolina. He disagreed, he said, with the assertion that Churchill suffered from serious depression, so he presented an anonymous description of Churchill’s personality, symptoms and achievements to three distinguished psychiatrists. Independently, each agreed that no one who was able to achieve so much could have suffered from Bipolar Disorder or Major Depression. Mental health professionals in the conference audience agreed.

      *****************

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    2. I agree with mm about this. Those with untreated major depression or the depressive phase of bipolar disorder are generally incapacitated for long periods of time. That means they cannot get out of bed, are uninterested in what goes on around them, cannot initiate activities, are unresponsive to others, and so on. How does that fit Churchill in any stage of his life?

      There are many people today who are productive despite a diagnosis of major depression or bipolar disorder but that is because of medications that alleviate symptoms and allow them to feel better and function more normally. Lithium for bipolar was first used in the late 1800's (1871) and there is no record of Churchill taking it. A less debilitating form of depression wouldn't meet the diagnostic criteria. But this is one problem with trying to diagnose someone without being able to assess them properly. The same symptoms are found in several different syndromes and you have to have both clinical experience and access to a lot more information to know which fits a person most closely. Bipolar used to be diagnosed by giving someone lithium and seeing whether they got better. If they didn't, it wasn't bipolar disorder.

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    3. The book I linked to was written by a psychiatrist. He said that Churchill could overcome his depression with big responsibility and hard work. He said that after Churchill retired and had no big responsibility, he fell apart. I read the book quite a while ago. As I recall, the author was in no doubt about Churchill's condition. He didn't seem to think there was any doubt.

      I presume the author was not Churchill's psychiatrist. He said nothing about medications. He probably wouldn't have known. Anyhow, effective anti-depression medications didn't exist back then.

      So, the author might be wrong, for all I know. In any event, Churchill's great accomplishments were real. They don't depend on whether or not Churchill suffered from clinical depression.

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  5. "Senior did so in the New York Times, but her column generated exactly zero discussion."

    Trump got in a lot of trouble when he tried to play doctor during his press briefings.

    Journalists don't want to commit that same error by pretending they can diagnose anyone without training or clinical experience.

    Senior is being as foolish as Trump was when he tried to second-guess the best efforts of epidemiologists and researchers now studying treatments for this virus.

    Journalists should be demanding that Trump receive an evaluation from a qualified professional not of his own choosing. Someone objective, who won't sign a letter Trump has dictated and won't produce the results Trump demands.

    I believe all of us at this point are waiting Trump out, devoting our efforts to defeating him at the polls. There is no point in starting a highly divisive campaign to oust Trump when he will be gone by natural processes in a matter of months.

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  6. It always amazes how leftists seek authorities, and the worst, most ignorant people alive, to tell them about reality.

    If it's in a book, DSM in this case, it must be a concrete thing with meaning. Homosexuality was a mental disorder a few years ago, listed all officially in the DSM. Stalin had a list of mental disorders applied to his enemies before he executed them. They were typed out too, so valid.

    The women at the nail salon eat it up especially when it comes out of the mouth of Dr. Phil but it doesn't make sense to conservatives to abandon independent thought to astrologists who sit in rooms with other astrologists making up words in order to keep the grants flowing. There's a perplexing malleability on the part of the many who subordinate themselves this way.

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    1. The DSM is produced by a committee of professional psychiatrists who belong to the American Psychiatric Association. It is used by both psychiatrists and clinical psychologists to classify people for research and insurance purposes. It lists diagnostic criteria so that practitioners can use those classifications consistently. It changes because the knowledge in the field improves over time, with research and experience, especially new knowledge arising in neuroscience and medicine.

      Dr. Phil is not a psychiatrist. His PhD is in forensic psychology. He is an entertainer and his show does not promise any therapeutic benefits. Stalin of course was not any kind of mental health practitioner.

      One thing most mental illnesses have in common is that the person with the illness suffers. The point of labeling someone is to help them feel better, which is the point of most medical and behavioral treatments. Diagnosis points to an effective treatment. Health professionals don't use diagnoses to persecute people, but neither are they responsible for the misuse of information by others, whether it is Stalin or Somerby. Leftists aren't the only ones who do this. The right is more likely to ignore science, malign those with expertise, and cling to ignorant beliefs than the left, in my opinion (supported by numerous studies).

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    2. The professional psychiatrists who compile the DSM designated homosexuality as a disease. Is it? Stalin's psychiatrists labeled dissidents as mentally ill, with similar nonsensical nomenclature. Labeling people diseased based on a group of traits is harmful but that's how the quackery industries profit. By selling snake oil to gullible housewives.

      The left is more likely to be gullible enough to give these "disciplines" like psychology and astrology scientific status they don't deserve.

      Personality traits might be useful for a skilled doctor or therapist to notice but the DSM is actually an impediment to effective treatment. Noticing that medications alleviate suffering of people with personality traits is also good and useful. But citing "the DSM" or psychotherapists as authorities on anything at all immediately makes someone appear gullible and ignorant.

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    3. Ronald Reagan was believer in astrology. He ran the country on it. He had a White House astrologist.

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    4. That's "Ronald Reagan, Worst President Ever" to you and I.

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    5. It's kind of like Trump suggesting that disinfectants can kill the virus en vivo, and, sure enough, some people are drinking bleach.

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    6. @2:30 The DSM was revised to remove homosexuality as a disorder to be treated. Even in the old editions, it discussed homosexuality as a disorder only when the person didn't want to be homosexual and was trying to change his own behavior (not when the therapist wanted to change the client, something that is considered unethical). But when there were new findings about the nature of homosexuality, the DSM was changed. So you are beating an old drum, attacking something that hasn't been true for over 20 years.

      As I said, the DSM isn't for treatment. It exists for insurance companies and research (to identify appropriate subjects for a study, for example). It is a misuse of the DSM to read the checklists and apply them to people you don't know (as Somerby has been doing) or people you dislike (your boss, your ex). The DSM is not an "authority" on any disorder. Psychiatrists and psychologists are the experts and they write books about these disorders, train therapists and teach classes. Research is the source of their authority, not the DSM.

      When you put psychology into the same sentence with astrology, you are just trolling.

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  7. "Is it possible that Trump is severely ill—that he is, in William Styron's phrase, one of "the beaten children of the Earth?"

    Somerby borrows a quote from Sophie's Choice that is about the Jews lost in the Holocaust. The entire phrase is: "who were but a few of the beaten and butchered and betrayed and martyred children of the earth."

    This quote has nothing to do with mental illness. Somerby leaves out several words from the original, in order to make it fit his purpose.

    Somerby should know better than to misuse the Holocaust in this manner. We are urged to remember it in order to prevent such atrocities from reoccurring in human history. The Jews were not mentally ill and they weren't made to suffer because of their own cognitive status. Once again, Somerby has grabbed other people's words and stuck them where they don't belong, just because he likes the sound of them, because he wants to validate his ideas using the stolen phrases of another writer. He really needs to stop doing this, especially when he keeps using references to the Holocaust (last week it was Anne Frank).

    For one thing, mentally ill people are not "beaten" into their illness. No one else does this to a person. Somerby keeps alluding to Trump's father as the cause of his problems, but there is no evidence that bad parenting causes mental illness (though it can affect coping and definitely affects behavior) and some evidence that both personality disorders and major mental illness are innate and have a genetic component, they are caused by differences in neurobiology.

    Further, Trump's siblings had the same father and didn't turn out to be anything like Trump. So, in what sense was Trump's mental illness beaten into him? And in what sense is he beaten in any respect now? Somerby ignores that many (even most) mentally ill people are able to lead satisfying normal lives. Comparing them to the murdered victims of the Nazis is entirely inappropriate (unless you want to refer specifically to the mentally ill people who were included among the victims of the Holocaust, along with people with other kinds of disabilities, which is not Somerby's usage here).

    This grabbing of phrases and using them out of context in a way that distorts their original meaning is an example of cognitive laziness. This is the kind of thing people do when they don't have the wherewithal to recognize all of the meaning contained in such phrases, a shortcut used by people with dementia and declining faculties, someone who isn't thinking clearly. We know that Somerby is not stupid, but he is growing older, and perhaps his concern for Trump's mental illness reflects an identification with a man who is also clearly declining in front of everyone's eyes. Somerby urges pity for Trump, but maybe he is asking it for himself as well. We all see ourselves decline over time and it can get scary. It wouldn't be surprising if this is the way Somerby is working through his own aging issues.

    My other theory is that he keeps asking us to call Trump mentally ill in order to help Trump gain reelection, because Somerby is on a right-wing payroll or works for a Russia-funded troll organization, like several of his commenters.

    And when deadrat comes around and tells me I am mind-reading and unfairly invading Somerby's psyche, I will answer that this is exactly what Senior and Somerby are doing to Trump.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Write my name and I appear in your comment section.

      The professor sez,

      Somerby should know better than to misuse the Holocaust in this manner. We are urged to remember it in order to prevent such atrocities from reoccurring in human history.

      TDH isn’t misusing the Holocaust, and since we’ve done such a miserable job preventing like atrocities from recurring, perhaps repurposing a quote from Styron isn’t such a terrible thing by comparison

      No, generally speaking, the mentally ill aren’t (physically) beaten into their illness. They’re often beaten (i.e., defeated) by it, and they’re often (emotionally) beaten by those closest to them. Is your literal mindedness an isolated problem or a symptom of a larger cognitive deficit? You’re in the best position to find out, and I urge you to do so.

      This grabbing of phrases and using them out of context in a way that distorts their original meaning is an example of cognitive laziness. This is the kind of thing people do when they don't have the wherewithal to recognize all of the meaning contained in such phrases, a shortcut used by people with dementia and declining faculties, someone who isn't thinking clearly.

      Dear god, professor. Why doesn’t your head just explode? What is it — are you immune from cognitive dissonance. You’re doing exactly the thing you decry.

      My other theory is that he keeps asking us to call Trump mentally ill in order to help Trump gain reelection, because Somerby is on a right-wing payroll or works for a Russia-funded troll organization, like several of his commenters.

      Paranoid ideation. Get this checked out.

      And TDH’s hobbyhorse isn’t that Trump is mentally ill. It’s that the topic is verboten to discuss in public discourse.

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    2. “And TDH’s hobbyhorse isn’t that Trump is mentally ill. It’s that the topic is verboten to discuss in public discourse.”

      You have got to be kidding.

      Somerby clearly believes Trump is mentally ill. He has been pushing that idea for a long time. Why else would he continually urge pity for Trump and claim that his being mentally ill means he isn’t at fault for his lies?

      He surely wouldn’t be pushing journalists to discuss something that he believes to be false or unlikely.

      And the idea that it is verboten is proven untrue by TDH himself, as he writes posts about media items *discussing Trump’s mental state.*

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    3. Now, mh, don’t go all Corby on me.

      It’s reasonable to infer that TDH believes that Trump is mentally ill. My claim is that this belief isn’t the complaint aired in the blog entry.

      Here’s a little experiment in reading comprehension. Re-read the entry, and count the number of times TDH calls Trump mentally ill and the number of times he criticizes the media on their refusal to discuss the topic.

      Instructive, yes? I’ll let you rescore: you may count any modal verb (could be, may be, might be, is possible, etc.) as a declarative. Now what’s the score?

      And the “media items” are few, far between, and generate no ongoing discussion. That’s the hobbyhorse.

      Delete
    4. In order to criticize the media for not discussing Trump's mental illness, the media would have to agree that Trump is mentally ill. That is by no means an established fact. Somerby is wrong to assume that. So, your count just establishes that Somerby is doing something wrong.

      I see those "media items" every day. They are not few or far between. There is no ongoing discussion because there is no way to establish Trump's illness when he won't be examined by a competent professional.

      Delete
    5. I am beginning to think that Somerby's frequent misuse of Holocaust references is a dog whistle of the same type as Trump uses, appealing to alt-right hate. Just as Holocaust denial is a thing on the far right, so is Holocaust disrespect, and that is what Somerby is doing, disrespecting important books that chronicle Holocaust experiences by applying them to his trivial experiences, such as watching his pear tree drop leaves on his neighbor's lawn.

      Delete
    6. not mh, you’ve gone full Corby on me.

      The media does not have to agree on the outcome of some issue of controversy to report on it. That’s simply absurd.

      Didja actually take the challenge I issued to mh? Because nowhere does TDH claim that Trump is mentally ill. For scoring purposes, I allowed mh to count the times that TDH says that it’s a possibility. What was your count?

      If you see these “media items” every day, then post your evidence. I’m not saying that TDH is right and you’re wrong. I’m saying that in his usual, adorable, obsessive way, TDH is carping on an issue of journalistic malfeasance.

      Delete
    7. Well, ya lost me at “beginning to think,” Anonymous Ignoramus @ 8:26P.

      You think TDH, the guy who says that Trump is dangerous and just might be a lunatic, is crafting his literary references so as to appeal to the alt-right? You think there are alt-right book groups reading Sophie’s Choice?

      Here’s a plan to keep your outrage in check: don’t be more upset than the people who have the most reason to be insulted.

      Delete
    8. You expect a Holocaust survivor to chime in here?

      My objection to Somerby's usage here is exactly the same as many others that have been lodged prior to this. But the Holocaust survivors today are aging out of the public arena. Someone who was a child during the Holocaust would be nearing their 80s today. Probably not active online.

      Yes, I think Somerby is doing this on purpose, just as Trump does. All it takes is a set of beliefs and attitudes, not any kind of planning.

      Delete
    9. You expect a Holocaust survivor to chime in here?

      Holocaust survivors. Family of Holocaust survivors. Friends of Holocaust survivors. Jews. ETO veterans.

      Get the idea? And no, I don’t expect anyone to waste his time here. So you’ll have to ask a member of one of the groups listed or imagine the outrage that one of those people feels after hearing an obscure, inappropriate literary reference.

      My objection to Somerby's usage here is exactly the same as many others that have been lodged prior to this.

      Oh, Sparky, you’re preaching to the choir. You’re an Anonymous Ignoramus and your other name is legion.

      Yes, I think Somerby is doing this on purpose, just as Trump does. All it takes is a set of beliefs and attitudes, not any kind of planning

      I think we can safely assume that TDH deliberately picked the quote he used. My objections aren’t to claims of the unsuitability of such. It’s to your baseless conclusory statements about his “beliefs and attitudes.”

      Delete
  8. “Is the president severely disordered in the way Gartner says? Is he a "malignant narcissist?" On that basis, is he a uniquely dangerous person?

    In our view, he certainly could be. But if he is, then in our view, that makes him one of the "beaten children of the Earth." It makes him Bob Dylan's (metaphorical) "poor immigrant," a broken-souled (and dangerous) person for whom Dylan recommended pity.”

    It’s an odd idea to recommend pity for a “uniquely dangerous” person, based on a possible diagnosis of a disorder that isn’t in the DSM offered by a man (Gartner) who “sounds angry and judgmental.”

    Trump is the perfect embodiment of today’s GOP. As such, he isn’t “uniquely” dangerous. The danger that he represents flows from the party and the voters he leads.

    Pity is a bonkers response, in my view. Righteous anger seems wholly appropriate, given the damage done by this man and his party.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "Trump is the perfect embodiment of today’s GOP."

      Meh. Rather, dembot, today's GOP is an imperfect and occasionally reluctant following of the Great Trumpist Revolution of 2016.

      What is dangerous -- obnoxious, repulsive -- is your hate-spewing totalitarian zombie cult.

      Delete
    2. Wrong again, Mao.
      Trump has the same exact failed ideology as the rest of Reagan Republicans.

      Delete
    3. What's "reluctant" about Mitch McConnell?

      Delete
  9. I don't know if Joe Biden is mentally ill or not but we do know he's a rapist.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The 25 credible accusations against Donald J. Trump of sexual harassment proves no such thing.

      Delete
    2. how do you know?

      Delete
    3. Because some right wing stooge said so?

      Delete
  10. TDH has a bug in his ear (i.e. a hair up his a^^) about how the media won't discuss that Trump might be "seriously mentally ill." (He also opines, in what I would consider to be quite excessive Pollyannaish mode, that Trump should be 'pitied'). Even TDH acknowledges that Gartner is over the top. I'm a lawyer, not a shrink, and never took a psychology course - but that said, psychiatric diagnosis is hardly an exact science. If the media ever wanted to discuss Trump's possible mental illness they'd have to speak to other shrinks; and I assume many wouldn't agree with Dr. Gartner, and not just Republican ones. Gartner claims that Trump is a sadist. I'm not aware that he's ordered anyone to be torture (though having to listen to him is a form of torture). No gulags yet. But what if the media embarked on the course that TDH keeps pounding away at? I fail to see what good that would do. It wouldn't be that the possibility of Trump's severe mental illness would suddenly dawn on a large segment of the masses the way it has on TDH. Mental illness isn't like lung cancer or the measles - it can be very subjective. The (presumably liberal) media would be ridiculed. I get the sense that TDH is confusing his own different world view from Trump's as evidence of Trump's diagnosed mental illness. That he and TDH don't think alike doesn't mean that Trump is insane. TDH is medicalizing what more properly should be considered character flaws.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. TDH is medicalizing what more properly should be considered character flaws.

      Gee, I might take that judgment more seriously if you hadn’t disclaimed being a lawyer, a shrink, or even a freshman Psych 101 student.

      psychiatric diagnosis is hardly an exact science

      Now you’ve done it. You made Prof. Corby cry.

      Delete
    2. It's the darnedest thing that every time I hire an expert psychologist there is another one on the other side asserting a diametrically opposed analysis of the same individual.

      Delete
    3. So, is the problem with psychology or with the people you are paying to testify? There are hacks in every profession. If this disagreement among experts testifying happens with a specialist analyzing blood splatter or someone analyzing bullet trajectories, do you then say that those fields are akin to astrology?

      Deadrat, I hate to tell you this but medicine itself is hardly an exact science. Largely because people are the same but also vary widely in their physiology and reactions to procedures and medicine. Physics is not an exact science. The exact sciences are not exact. There are variability, measurement difficulties and imprecision all over the place. Cosmologists disagree with each other.

      I'm not crying, because who knows this about psychology better than psychologists. Most of the statistics invented to deal with variability were developed by those working in psychology before they spread to other fields. Biostatistics uses techniques that started in psychology. Same with economics. All those pithy quotes about psychology not being a science come from before the development of statistical and modeling techniques to deal with the variability inherent in human behavior. Those statistics allow psychologists to talk about central tendencies and to measure error (variability).

      I'll bet you didn't even know that there is such a field as mathematical psychology. I'll bet you didn't know that it emerged from learning theory and behaviorist research (with rats) as a formalism of the laws observed in learning behavior. I'll bet you think that there are no laws governing human behavior -- you would be wrong about that. Modeling, not statistics, is the current approach to describing and predicting behavior.

      People rebel against psychology for psychological reasons. No one likes being seen in their underwear and that's what psychologists do -- they examine human foibles, the things people like to think they don't do. Despite all the attempts to discredit psychology as a legitimate science, its findings are widely applied in ways you are probably not aware of. My favorite is the way knowledge of visual illusions is applied at Disneyland to create illusions using tricks of perception rather than expensive technology. It is very cool. There is a guy at UC Irvine who teaches a grad class on it. But before such things were implemented, Disney was ahead of the curve on crowd control (back in the 50s) so that people could have fun despite long wait times, courtesy of psychology.

      Delete
    4. Deadrat, I hate to tell you this but medicine itself is hardly an exact science.

      Don’t kid a kidder, professor. You love telling me stuff, especially stuff about what I think, what I believe, and what I know.

      Largely because people are the same but also vary widely in their physiology and reactions to procedures and medicine.

      Presumably, because people are not the same. Or at least, I hope that’s what you meant. Yes, point taken. Every field of science has its frontiers of investigation, and the closer one works to the frontier, the harder it is to be exact or sometimes to be exactly sure of anything. But physiological medicine is exact enough to make bone-setting routinely successful and to have wiped out small pox. Psychology has nothing even close. It’s all frontier.

      Physics is not an exact science.

      Professor, I hate to tell you this, but quantum mechanics agrees with measurements in some experiments to twelve decimal places. Exact enough for you?

      Cosmologists disagree with each other.

      Cosmologists do not disagree on the red shift of light from distant galaxies or the existence of gravity waves. They agree they don’t know enough to describe the singularity near the big bang while they disagree on various possibilities of explanation. Psychology isn’t remotely comparable.

      I'm not crying,….

      I was just funnin’ ya. Do I have to mark the parts that are facetious? ‘Cause it’s not as much fun for me if I do.

      I was glad to see you describe the DSM-V as a manual for coding for insurance companies, but that wasn’t its initial goal. The DSM-V was supposed to be a tool for differential diagnosis. The APA wanted different psychiatrists given identical patient histories to assign, within reason, the same category labels to the same patients. They failed. In fact, as I recall, they had to cancel their verification program.

      I’ll cop to not knowing about “mathematical psychology.” And there you go betting on what I think. But it’s not that I think there are no laws governing human behavior, it’s that I don’t believe psychology has quantified those laws into something reliably useful at the therapeutic level.

      And that’s what we’re discussing here, the diagnosis (or failure of such) in the case of Donald Trump. Not the creepy crowd control at Disneyland, which if it relied on visual illusions, was based on neurology, not psychology.

      People do “rebel” against psychology in treatment. It’s called resistance. But that doesn’t mean that by and large the field isn’t populated by cranks, charlatans, and people deluded enough to believe that they’re swimming with physicists and cosmologists.

      I hasten to point out that I believe that empathetic and insightful therapists can help people with psychological problems. I just don’t think they rely on any rigorous theory of the mind. By way of contrast, I believe that designers of semiconductor devices continue to make their products smaller and faster because they rely on the theories of physics.

      So, when did California incorporate the APA ethical guidelines into law?

      Delete
    5. 1. "which if it relied on visual illusions, was based on neurology, not psychology."

      All behavior depends on brain function (neurology) and has a neural substrate, so that is a cop-out, but visual illusions occur because of thinking, not what happens in the eye or brain. They are part of perception not sensation. They are errors in the interpretation of visual images that largely occur due to experience, not the innate structure of the eye. Try this website: https://michaelbach.de/ot/

      2. APA guidelines are part of the licensing law in CA and have been since clinical psychologists and MFTs have required licenses. This is because the APA is a professional organization. Lawmakers rely on such organizations to know what standards practitioners should be required to meet. Try this: https://www.psychologist-license.com/articles/psychologist-licensure.html

      3. Laws of human behavior? Start with Weber's law, which has the reliability of anything found in physics. The foundation that links subjective experience to the physical world is Fechner's Law. These were discovered by psychophysicists, people who were explicitly psychologists in the 1800s. Then there is Hernnstein's Law of Matching, which describes choice behaviors when there are two alternatives. BF Skinners discoveries are the basis for casino gambling, an entire industry, and also for video game development, but originally guided employers in deciding how much to pay workers and how to motivate them toward maximum effort. Most of the findings in learning theory apply to situations involving behavior of people outside their conscious choice, such as school children, animal training, prisons and mental hospitals. But the people who modeled that behavior hypothesized that these laws operate in all situations and guide how our behavior changes as the result of daily experiences. Now, such "laws" are used in treating additions, changing lifestyles after heart attacks, weight loss, and so on (although many of these problems are complicated by medical issues as well). And then there are laws involved in how people are affected by advertising and persuasion. These are applied everywhere, including on the internet. How many times does someone need to see an ad before making a decision to buy? That stuff is quantified, by psychologists (John Watson started it when he was kicked out of his academic job in psychology and entered advertising). An look at Kahneman & Tversy's contributions to behavioral economics, for Kahneman won a nobel prize for his contributions to decision-making. Michael Lewis wrote a book about them. Their work is as science-y as it gets. Tversky worked in mathematical psychology.

      The public can poke fun about psychology and compare it to astrology, but it affects our daily lives as much as the work of design engineers and physicists. Did I mention Don Norman and the field of human factors, which works at the interface between man and machine to help people use products engineers create? His design principles are taught everywhere and human factors psychology (engineering psychology) has a great deal to do with how useable a product is.

      But go ahead and mock. The nice thing about science is that its results are true and affect our lives no matter what people think about them.

      Delete
    6. 1. visual illusions occur because of thinking, not what happens in the eye or brain.

      I hope you realize that this makes absolutely no sense. I’m gonna guess that you mean that visual illusions take place because of the processing of the visual cortex, which processing cannot be understood by regarding the eye as a digital camera and the brain as a graphics processing unit. It’s much more complicated and less well understood than that. See Oliver Sacks.

      Part of the problem here is that you have a more encompassing definition of psychology, which includes all of neurology. I’m talking about therapeutic treatment of abnormal thinking and associated behavior. You’ll be right to guard against my inaccurately dismissing anything you say as “mere neurology,” but we’re talking about diagnosing Trump as mentally ill.

      2. I’m not saying that the APA guidelines haven’t been incorporated into California law. I’m saying that I’ve looked (here) and I can’t find them. Your link takes me to a page that itself links to licensing procedures, which is different. Can you provide me a link to California law that incorporates the APA ethical guidelines?

      3.OK, professor, I took a pass at the homework:

      Weber’s law: ��I = kI. The least noticeable change in a stimulus ��I is a fixed proportion of the original stimulus I.

      Fechner’s law: Ψ = k logS. The subjective sensation Ψ is proportional to the logarithm of the magnitude the stimulus S.

      Hernstein’s law: R₁/R₂ = r₁/r₂. The ratio of the rates of responses to two stimuli, R₁ and R₂, equals the ratio of their respective reinforcements r₁ and r₂.

      These aren’t scientific laws like Maxwell’s equations of electromagnetism or Einstein’s equations of general relativity. Sure they’re “science-y,” which bears the same relation to science as Stephen Colbert’s “truthiness” bears to truth. Weber’s law doesn’t work for extreme stimuli, and Hernstein’s law works well for pigeons, but not so much for human beings. But I can grant you all your claims for the psychology of shopping and the human factors of man-machine interfaces, and we’re nowhere near any kind of understanding of mental illness. Try applying your laws to schizophrenia, involutional melancholia, and malignant narcissism. The DSM-V is a monument to our inability to systemically describe mental illness, let along account for its origins and progression from the basics of neurology.

      Delete
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  26. I want to thank of great Dr. Todd he brought my boyfriend back to me. i had seen many people to get him back but nothing, Dr. Todd gave me a consultation and told me all truth, and I trusted Dr. Todd and had him do the spells for me. it took awhile because it was very very messy between us. i had to wait for each spell to do its work. but once the last spell finally was working and the other spells had worked, that is when he called. we met. then it took many more meetings. but now we are back together and i can only thank Dr.Todd, he is the greatest, i will come to Dr. Todd for life. Todd took care of me like family. contact; manifestspellcast @ gmail. com manifestspellcast.wordpress.com
    WhatsApp:+1 604 901 9747

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  27. Greatest thanks to Dr Oyagu for his herbal drugs that he prepared for me and when I start using it in just 2weeks I was completely cured and that ended my HERPES SIMPLEX 1&2 DISEASE i am so happy and grateful to Dr Oyagu . after reading about him on a testimony of Jason Cash on a blogger. I knew suddenly Dr Oyagu was the right Doctor to cure my HERPES SIMPLEX 1&2 DISEASE. I discuss with Dr Oyagu and he prepared a herbal medicine for me and when it got sent to me in south Korean . I used the herbal medicine and 2weeks and i went to check up again. after 15years of suffering from HERPES SIMPLEX 1&2 at last i am smiling once again. Dr Oyagu also has remedy to others disease like COLD SORES,HIV/AIDS,DIABETES.CANCER,HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE AND MANY MORE. I oblige everyone to contact this powerful herbalist Dr Oyagu and be free from your suffering. contact his WhatsApp line: +2348101755322 or visit his Website https://oyaguspellcaster.wixsite.com/oyaguherbalhome Email:Oyaguherbalhome@gmail.com

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  28. This testimony is worth sharing to the world. I am here to tell the world of the good works of  Dr BALBOSA. My name is Olivia Bolton am from the UK.. My man left me and my kids for another older woman. It was not so easy for me.. I love my husband so much and I did not lose hope and I kept praying and God finally answered my prayers...i searched online for a spell caster to help me unite me and my lover back forever and i saw so many testimonies of  how DR BALBOSA has helped so many people online and i decided to give him a trial … I contacted him and explained to him. He told me not to worry that he will bring back my man within 24 hours. He consulted his powers and assured me not to worry . He did his work and cast the spell and to my greatest surprise, my husband came back the same day begging and crying  just as  Dr BALBOSA said. He begged me for forgiveness and he promised never to leave me for any reason. We are happy and we live together as one. Contact Dr BALBOSA now on: balbosasolutionhome@gmail.com and you can also contact him on WHATSAPP +2347048047728... don't lose hope have a lovely day 




    This testimony is worth sharing to the world. I am here to tell the world of the good works of  Dr BALBOSA. My name is Olivia Bolton am from the UK.. My man left me and my kids for another older woman. It was not so easy for me.. I love my husband so much and I did not lose hope and I kept praying and God finally answered my prayers...i searched online for a spell caster to help me unite me and my lover back forever and i saw so many testimonies of  how DR BALBOSA has helped so many people online and i decided to give him a trial … I contacted him and explained to him. He told me not to worry that he will bring back my man within 24 hours. He consulted his powers and assured me not to worry . He did his work and cast the spell and to my greatest surprise, my husband came back the same day begging and crying  just as  Dr BALBOSA said. He begged me for forgiveness and he promised never to leave me for any reason. We are happy and we live together as one. Contact Dr BALBOSA now on: balbosasolutionhome@gmail.com and you can also contact him on WHATSAPP +2347048047728... don't lose hope have a lovely day 

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  29. HELLO EVERYONE.. FEW MUNINETS TO REDY THIS INFOR ON HERPES CURE 2018..
    2017 MY MOTHER WAS DIAGNOSED OF HERPES/ KNOWN AS GENITAL WARTS ,I SPENT A LOT OF MONEY ON HER MEDICATION TILL A POINT I EVEN LOST HOPE,BECAUSE MY MOTHER WAS GRADUALLY DYING AND LOST HER MEMORY TOO, I WAS SO DESPERATE TO GET MY MOTHER BACK TO NORMAL, ONE DAY MY UNCLE WHO LIVES IN LONDON UNITED KINGDOM TOLD ME ABOUT DR OLIHA ,WHO HELPED HIM GET RID OF HERPES /GENITAL WART WITH HERBAL MEDICINE AND HIS HERBAL SOAP ,I WAS SO SHOCKED WHEN HE TOLD ME ABOUT THIS ,ALTHOUGH I NEVER BELIEVE IN HERB BUT, I KEEP TO BELIEVE BECAUSE MY UNCLE CAN'T TELL ME LIES WHEN IT COMES TO HEALTH CONDITION I CONTACTED DR OLIHA VIA HIS EMAIL; OLIHA.MIRACLEMEDICINE@GMAIL.COM , YOU CAN TALK TO HIM VIA CALL OR WHATSAPP MESSENGER ON +2349038382931 , HE REPLIED AND ASK ME TO SEND MY HOME ADDRESS AND MY MOTHER'S DETAIL AND THEN I PURCHASED THE HERBAL MEDICINE,SENT ME THE HERBAL MEDICINE THROUGH COURIER SERVICE, WHEN I RECEIVED THIS HERBAL MEDICINE USED IT FOR 2 WEEKS, AND 4 DAYS OF USAGE THE WARTS FELL OFF, MY MOTHER I NOW TOTALLY CURED AND MY MOTHER IS LIVING FREE AND HAPPY AGAIN. YOU CAN TALK TO DR VIA HIS MOBILE NUMBER OR WHATS APP HIM ON +2349038382931 or website i saw on the :https://olihamiraclemedicine.webs.com/    ALL THANKS TO DOCTOR DR OLIHA  

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  30. This testimony is worth sharing to the world. I am here to tell the world of the good works of  Dr BALBOSA. My name is Olivia Bolton am from the UK.. My man left me and my kids for another older woman. It was not so easy for me.. I love my husband so much and I did not lose hope and I kept praying and God finally answered my prayers...i searched online for a spell caster to help me unite me and my lover back forever and i saw so many testimonies of  how DR BALBOSA has helped so many people online and i decided to give him a trial … I contacted him and explained to him. He told me not to worry that he will bring back my man within 24 hours. He consulted his powers and assured me not to worry . He did his work and cast the spell and to my greatest surprise, my husband came back the same day begging and crying  just as  Dr BALBOSA said. He begged me for forgiveness and he promised never to leave me for any reason. We are happy and we live together as one. Contact Dr BALBOSA now on: balbosasolutionhome@gmail.com and you can also contact him on WHATSAPP +2347048047728... don't lose hope have a lovely day 

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  31. This testimony is worth sharing to the world. I am here to tell the world of the good works of  Dr BALBOSA. My name is Olivia Bolton am from the UK.. My man left me and my kids for another older woman. It was not so easy for me.. I love my husband so much and I did not lose hope and I kept praying and God finally answered my prayers...i searched online for a spell caster to help me unite me and my lover back forever and i saw so many testimonies of  how DR BALBOSA has helped so many people online and i decided to give him a trial … I contacted him and explained to him. He told me not to worry that he will bring back my man within 24 hours. He consulted his powers and assured me not to worry . He did his work and cast the spell and to my greatest surprise, my husband came back the same day begging and crying  just as  Dr BALBOSA said. He begged me for forgiveness and he promised never to leave me for any reason. We are happy and we live together as one. Contact Dr BALBOSA now on: balbosasolutionhome@gmail.com and you can also contact him on WHATSAPP +2347048047728... don't lose hope have a lovely day 

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  32. Life is always beautiful when you have good health. For almost a year had Hpv and I was lonely and sad luckily I was directed to a very kind and Great Dr Onokun who helped me cure my Hpv and today I am free from Hpv and very healthy thank you so much Dr Onokun Email him via: Dronokunherbalcure@gmail.com  or website: https://dronokunherbalcure.wordpress.com/ 

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  33. This testimony is worth sharing to the world. I am here to tell the world of the good works of  Dr BALBOSA. My name is Olivia Bolton am from the UK.. My man left me and my kids for another older woman. It was not so easy for me.. I love my husband so much and I did not lose hope and I kept praying and God finally answered my prayers...i searched online for a spell caster to help me unite me and my lover back forever and i saw so many testimonies of  how DR BALBOSA has helped so many people online and i decided to give him a trial … I contacted him and explained to him. He told me not to worry that he will bring back my man within 24 hours. He consulted his powers and assured me not to worry . He did his work and cast the spell and to my greatest surprise, my husband came back the same day begging and crying  just as  Dr BALBOSA said. He begged me for forgiveness and he promised never to leave me for any reason. We are happy and we live together as one. Contact Dr BALBOSA now on: balbosasolutionhome@gmail.com and you can also contact him on WHATSAPP +2347048047728... don't lose hope have a lovely day 

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  34.  ***PLEASE READ*** 
    I can never thank you enough DR.BALBOSA for the wonderful work you did for me and my kids to bring back my husband. Am stella Andre from England. I was having serious relationship problems with my husband and he was no longer committed to me and our kids, when i asked him what the problem was he told me he has fell out of love for me and wanted a divorce and  i was so heart broken, i cried all day and night, it had resulted in him moving out to his friend’s apartment. Everything got worse because he started going to bars and strip clubs frequently with his friend, getting drunk and passing out. He always threatens me on the phone whenever I call him because of all the bad advice that his friend has given him. I really love him and we had been married for 8 years which gave us a beautiful daughter and a son. I had also lost a lot of money on therapists until I was introduced to DR. BALBOSA by a friend whom he helped to marry her childhood boyfriend, this gave me total confidence and strength to get him back. I did all that DR. BALBOSA asked me to do it and I also followed all instructions given to me by DR. BALBOSA to my greatest surprise after 48 hours my husband called me and rushed back home with a brown new car for me and our kids... things just changed between us emotionally, I was the happiest woman on earth that day. my husband now has a good job and stopped drinking and he stopped keeping irrelevant friends. It’s a miracle I never believed was possible because I had lost all hope until I found DR. BALBOSA...contact him today and get your love back i can assure you .... contact him on his Email on: balbosasolutionhome@gmail.com and CALL/ WHATSAPP: +2347048047728... Good luck... 

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  35. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstances. I give God all the glory for bringing Lord Zakuza into my life for helping me get my wife back that got me divorced for one year. I was the last person on earth to accept the fact that spells exist or work not until I was referred to Lord Zakuza online to who has helped so many people with his powerful spells. I had no other option than to give it a try because 3 months after the divorce, I was demoted at my place of work due to depression for I don't know what to do to get her back but thank God today for using Lord Zakuza to get my happiness and love life back within 48 hours. Just last week here, I was promoted back to my position and I'm here to share my own experience with this man called Lord Zakuza. I don't know what you are going through today but know that in all situation there's always a way out. Lord Zakuza also prepares spells like Lottery spell, job spell, spell to stop a divorce, spell cure for any diseases, protection spell, spell to become successful and wealthy E.T.C. Contact him now for any help via TEXT OR WHATSAPP MESSENGER with: +1 740-573-9483 and Email on: Lordzakuza7@gmail.com

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  36. How I Got My Ex Husband Back..Am so excited to share my testimony of a real spell caster who brou. We were happily married with two kids, a boy and a girl. 3 months ago, I started to notice some strange behavior from him and a few weeks later I found out that my husband is seeing someone else. He started coming home late from work, he hardly care about me or the kids anymore, Sometimes he goes out and doesn't even come back home for about 2-3 days. I did all I could to rectify this problem but all to no avail. I became very worried and needed help. As I was browsing through the internet one day, I came across a website that suggested that Dr  Aluya   can help solve marital problems, restore broken relationships and so on. So, I felt I should give him a try. I contacted him and and told him my problems and he told me what to do and i did it and he did a spell for me. 48 hours later, my husband came to me and apologized for the wrongs he did and promise never to do it again. Ever since then, everything has returned back to normal. I and my family are living together happily again.. All thanks to Dr  Aluya Powerful Love Spell that really works. If you have any problem contact him and i guarantee you that he will help you. He will not disappoint you. Email him at:  aluya.48hoursspelltemple@gmail.com  or whatsapp him on:  +2348110493039      you can also go through his website   draluya48hoursspelltemple.webs.com/

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