Former commander shows no remorse!


As always, top scribes are surprised: Full disclosure! We've never met him, but Daniel Goldman seems like the nicest guy in the world.

He also seems like a thoroughly capable legal analyst. That said, on last evening's All In show, he brought the analysts right out of their chairs at one point.

The One True Channel still hasn't posted last night's "Full Episode" tape. For that reason, we can't transcribe Goldman's exact remarks—but we jotted quick notes at the time.

The scribes were discussing one of the tweets Trump laid down after the riot. "That tweet—it's really sociopathic," Goldman said, seeming perhaps a bit shocked.

Alas! Here in Our Town, we've never allowed ourselves to discuss a blindingly obvious fact. Almost surely, the former commander in chief is diagnosable as a sociopath.

Why does his behavior seem sociopathic? Because he's a sociopath! He's simply behaving the way a sociopath would. 

Is the former commander a sociopath, whatever that might mean? For the millionth time, this is the way his niece, a clinical psychologist, describes his many psychopathologies:

MARY TRUMP (pages 12-13): None of the Trump siblings emerged unscathed from my grandfather's sociopathy and my grandmother's illnesses, both physical and psychological, but my uncle Donald and my father, Freddy, suffered more than the rest. In order to get a complete picture of Donald, his psychopathologies, and the meaning of his dysfunctional behavior, we need a thorough family history.

In the last three years, I’ve watched as countless pundits, armchair psychologists and journalists have kept missing the mark, using phrases such as "malignant narcissism" and "narcissistic personality disorder" in an attempt to make sense of Donald’s often bizarre and self-defeating behavior. I have no problem calling Donald a narcissist—he meets all nine criteria as outlined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5)—but the label only gets us so far.


[Clinical] experiences showed me time and again that diagnosis doesn't exist in a vacuum. Does Donald have other symptoms we aren't aware of? Are there other disorders that might have as much or more explanatory power? Maybe. A case could be made that he also meets the criteria for antisocial personality disorder, which in its most severe forms is generally considered sociopathy but can also refer to chronic criminality, arrogance, and disregard for the rights of others...

The fact is, Donald’s pathologies are so complex and his behaviors so often inexplicable that coming up with an accurate and comprehensive diagnosis would require a full battery of psychological and neuropsychological tests that he’ll never sit for. 

In her widely-reviewed best-selling book, Mary Trump explicitly said that Fred Trump was a sociopath. Perhaps at the behest of her publisher, she was a bit more careful in discussing the former commander himself, but her account of his (many) "psychopathologies" left little to the imagination—except to major opinion leaders here in the streets of Our (low-functioning) Town.

Over Here, our tribunes agreed that we mustn't conduct such discussions. For that reason, we're still exuding surprise when we dare to say that one of the commander's tweets may seem sociopathic.

As far as we know, it isn't exactly a sociopath's fault if he's a sociopath. We'd like to see a medical / psychiatric expert discuss that point, but such discussions still aren't allowed in Our Town.

Instead, our tribunes play their reindeer games in standard Groundhog Day fashion. Here were Anderson Cooper and Jim Acosta, surprised again last night. They may have been discussing the same (sociopathic) tweet Goldman and Hayes discussed:

COOPER (2/10/21): Reaction now from the [former] president and the defendants...

Jim, this new video played by the House Managers today, showing former Vice President Pence and his family being whisked away as the mob was within a hundred feet of where him and his family were sheltering in place, it was certainly—

You know, it's terrifying just to watch it. To know that the former president also had then just, you know, in those moments tweeted against the vice president, adds, you know, insults and even more horror to it.

Do we know whether the former president had any reaction to that, or the rest of today's proceedings?

ACOSTA: ...What I'm hearing from my sources, Anderson, is that Donald Trump still does not feel any remorse for what happened on January 6th, as incredible, or perhaps as believable, as that sounds.

And one of the awful aspects of all of this, that he is not remorseful about it, is what happened to Vice President Mike Pence. When you see that footage of the vice president at the time and his family being whisked away by the Secret Service, it is—it is an affirmation of what I heard from Pence aides at the time, he said, they were furious with Donald Trump because he had been sending out those tweets.

There they went again, on this all-new Groundhog Day.! According to Acosta's breaking news, the former commander is not remorseful about the danger he directed at Pence.

The former commander isn't remorseful, the CNN star reported. As incredible as that may sound!

Sociopaths don't feel remorse, or so it's routinely said. Also, here in the streets of Our Town, our major upper-end star journalists just can't seem to get it together.

They're shocked, shocked every single night. After that, a new days dawns, and they're shocked all over again.


  1. "Why does his behavior seem sociopathic? Because he's a sociopath! He's simply behaving the way a sociopath would."

    This is circular, plus sociopath is a label, not an explanation for his behavior. Even a sociopath has motives which can be explained. Even a sociopath reacts to context.

    1. Did philosophy major Somerby never learn to identify tautology?

  2. "As far as we know, it isn't exactly a sociopath's fault if he's a sociopath."

    It may not be a sociopath's fault that he is a sociopath, but it is his fault if he commits acts that harm others or that are against the law. His behavior is within his control. Most sociopaths do not grow up to become criminals and con men. They hold careers such as doctor or lawyer. It is estimated that a large proportion of surgeons may be sociopaths (because their different emotional reactions are an asset to doing what surgeons must do).

    Somerby's idea that simply calling Trump a sociopath excuses his behavior is wrong and very few mental health professionals would agree with his assumptions about the consequences of their behavior. It depends on the environment and upbringing of the sociopathic person as a child. The same is true for people who are not diagnoses as sociopaths. Note that Trump has never been officially diagnosed, in the manner that Mary Trump says would be necessary to label him. But that doesn't stop Somerby, perhaps because he has no license to lose by abusing the term.

  3. The Impeachment Hearing is not about whether Trump felt remorse or not, nor is it about whether he is a sociopath. It is about acts he committed while in office, and things he failed to do, that were part of his duty as President. This is about holding Trump accountable for his actions. Sociopaths don't get a free pass just because they are sociopaths, as Somerby seems to suggest. It is appropriate for these journalists to point out the wrongness of Trump's behavior, including his lack of remorse. It is part of his failure as President and that is the subject of this impeachment.

    What is wrong with Somerby? He doesn't seem to be feeling the same horror that many of us are experiencing as we watch the evidence presented by the House Managers. I have to wonder why not. Why isn't Somerby shocked by Trump's behavior? It isn't normal, even for sociopaths (as a group).

  4. “The former commander isn't remorseful, the CNN star reported. As incredible as that may sound!”

    Nice paraphrase. Too bad it’s wrong.

    Acosta didn’t say Trump wasn’t remorseful. He said his sources were telling him that.

    Also, good job dropping a significant word from Acosta’s quote. He did not say “As incredible as that may sound”. What he actually said:
    “as incredible, or perhaps as believable, as that sounds.”

    Somerby characterizes Acosta as “shocked.” Nowhere does Acosta express that he was shocked.

  5. “it is an affirmation of what I heard from Pence aides at the time, he said, they were furious with Donald Trump because he had been sending out those tweets.”

    Why in the world would those Pence aides have been furious with Donald Trump, Sociopath, for sending out those tweets, if that’s just what Sociopaths do?

    Clearly, Somerby would have pitied Trump.

  6. “Why does his behavior seem sociopathic? Because he's a sociopath!”

    Somerby meanders from absolute affirmation that Trump is a sociopath, full stop, but then quotes Mary Trump saying it’s merely possible that he’s a sociopath, but then Somerby isn’t sure if it’s a sociopath's fault if he's a sociopath and just wants some discussion about that point, but then affirms that Donald Trump, Sociopath, is merely behaving in ways that all sociopaths do when he expresses no regret.

    Moral: liberals suck. The End.

  7. "According to Acosta's breaking news, the former commander is not remorseful about the danger he directed at Pence."

    Eh, what? You certainly do sound sociopathic, dear Bob, just as sociopathic as all the rest of your cult's goebbelsian dembots.

    People got angry at those who were supposed to represent them (including Mr Pence), and who, the people felt, betrayed them.

    Does Mr Pence feel remorseful? We have no idea. But if that incident will end (or severely harm) his political career (which seems plausible) then he might very well get remorseful.

    That's understandable. But what should The Commander feel remorseful about?

    1. "People got angry at those who were supposed to represent them (including Mr Pence), and who, the people felt, betrayed them."

      Yup. These snowflakes were pissed that black people's votes were being counted in the election, and when you want HUGE scoops of bigotry, Republicans are THE "go to" party.

  8. The best evidence we have is that between 1%-4% of people are sociopaths. Yet 46.9% of the electorate wanted their country to be run by a sociopath. So the question is, what features of American society produce people who are attracted to leaders like Trump and the many other Republicans who so clearly display sociopathic behavior and attitudes?

    I maintain that the core Republican beliefs of capitalist domination and right-wing religious fundamentalism encourage people to have sociopathic attitudes and to do sociopathic behavior. Both beliefs encourage callous attitudes towards human suffering. They both encourage egocentric and sociocentric thinking. The result is extreme narcissism and self-centeredness and extreme group loyalty leading to cultishness and hatred of outsiders.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Most importantly, the primary goal of capitalist and religious fundamentalist beliefs is to destroy feelings of human solidary, to destroy the idea that people can love and trust each other and work together for the common good. Both beliefs strive to produce fear, making strife inevitable. Capitalist greed and competition encourage fear and distrust for your fellow human whom you must defeat in its concocted and unnecessary zero-sum-game war of all against all. Religious cultishness does the same by creating the chosen, the elect, separate and superior to all others. These beliefs concoct the mindset of a soldier fighting an endless war against feared evil others.

    3. Trump's POLICIES were particularly helpful to black Americans. his policies were generally more effective than President Obama's. Whether or not Trump is a sociopath, his policies benefitted a lot of people.

    4. And a whopping 8 % of black Americans voted for him in 2020 compared with 6% in 2016. The other 92% may not have liked his promotion of white nationalist organizations. Or teargassing BLM protesters for a photo op. Or his miserable anti science response and outright lies about a pandemic that inequitably killed and left jobless black Americans. Or his attempts at repealing the Affordable Care Act without offering up a replacement. Or his never ending denigration of Obama beginning with his racist lies about his birthplace. Yeah it was a great four years for blacks and minorities in this country. Trump loves the blacks. He said so. So sad, they didn’t love him back. Except the 2% more of the 11% of black voters that voted for him in 2020 compared with 2016. Which was apparently a big deal in the media.

    5. David in Cal,
      Based on Trump's history and success rates, I'm going to guess Trump's policies were designed to hurt, not benefit, black people.

    6. The next argument in good faith David makes will be his first.

  9. Whether or not a sociopath actually feels remorse, surely there are some, perhaps many, who are able to feign remorse and other normal emotions in order to remain viable in their surroundings?

    Somerby seems to think that all sociopaths are exactly alike, and all are exactly like Donald Trump.

  10. He doesn't have OCD, ADHD, communication disorder, and a personality disorder just because he had a bad relationship with his grandpa. That's simply not how illness is transmitted.

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