Manifestations of The Crazy!


Donald J. Trump and Us: Lawrence O'Donnell started Thursday night's Last Word in a highly informative way. 

He started the program by reporting a manifestation of The Crazy.

In this case, The Crazy had been given voice by one Donald J. Trump. As Lawrence explained, Trump had posted this analysis on his oddly named Truth Social site:

TRUMP (1/12/23): Page 1. The Special “Prosecutor” assigned to the “get Trump case,” Jack Smith(?), is a Trump Hating THUG whose wife is a serial and open Trump Hater, whose friends & other family members are even worse, and as a prosecutor in Europe, according to Ric Grenell, put a high government official in prison because he was a Trump positive person. Smith is known as “an unfair Savage,” & is best friends with the craziest Trump haters, including Lisa Monaco who runs “Injustice.” The Boxes Scam is a HOAX...

For the record, that was just the first page of a three-page screed by the overwrought former president. 

We won't bore you with the second page, though you can read the text of all three pages thanks to this Mediaite report. That said, Trump's Page 3 went like this: 

TRUMP: Page 3. Fire a man who may very well turn out to be a criminal, Jack Smith. His conflicts, unfairness, and mental state of derangement make him totally unfit for the job of “getting Trump.” Go after Biden and the Biden Crime Family instead. Like Bill Barr, the U.S. Attorneys in Delaware and Illinois are weak, ineffective, and afraid to do what must be done. The Election was RIGGED, and we are now losing our Country. We can’t let that happen. MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!

We've long suggested that Donald J. Trump seems to be deeply disordered, in a way which might best be discussed by appropriate medical specialists. 

Is he (severely) "mentally ill" in some diagnosable way? Is he (severely) cognitively impaired? We aren't equipped to answer those questions. But it seems to us that his behavior should be understood and critiqued within some such framework, rather than by screaming and yelling, in pleasing ways, about his endless "lies."

As it turned out, Donald J. Trump wasn't done with The Crazy that day. As O'Donnell explained, he'd gone on "a right-wing radio show" and expanded on his analysis.

Inevitably, the gruesome radio program in question was The Mark Levin Show, whose home stations are WABC in New York and WMAL in Washington. Thanks to this second Mediaite report, you can hear Trump offer these remarks on that highly influential program:

TRUMP (1/12/23): My prosecutor is Jack Smith. I wonder what his name was before Smith? I don't know, maybe it was Smith, but it seems like such a nice name, Jack Smith. He is a terrorist. He is a Trump hater. His best friends are [Andrew] Weissmann and all of these characters. Lisa Monaco at the Justice Department, one of the top officials. This is a disgraceful situation. He should resign. His wife hates Trump, probably even beyond him. And his wife—and his wife has a sister who openly hates like, a level that you can’t even believe.

In those remarks, Trump went beyond his earlier claims about Smith's wife, expanding his field to comments about the sister of Smith's wife. 

(We assume that Trump's comments about Smith's name are meant to suggest that Smith may secretly be Jewish, though of course we can't say that with certainty.)

In short, Donald J. Trump seems to be deeply in thrall to The Crazy. Given the limitations of human cognition; given the reach and the power of certain modern technologies; these manifestations of The Crazy—whether from Trump or from various other red tribe players—may be quite hard to confront.

It would help if we, over here in our tribe, stayed away from similar nuttiness of the kinds to which our own tribe seems ineluctably drawn. 

It would help if we could stifle such instincts! That said, inconsolable major experts have told us, again and again, that this is unlikely to happen.

More on these dangers next week. Our tribe is confronting a very serious political / cultural challenge. In our view, it would help if we reined in our own unfortunate inclinations in various obvious ways.

We like to believe that we're morally great. On the whole, all in all, we just aren't!


  1. The woods are lovely, dark, and deep. Donald Trump is a good, decent person.

    1. What kind of good decent person defends against rape charges by saying the accuser "is not my type"?

  2. I must admit that those comments by Trump sound crazy.

    1. Oh, what a breakthrough. They are not an inch out of character, and you know it.

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    3. This was a crucial opinion on Trump's mental state. Crucial. And needed!


  3. "In short, Donald J. Trump seems to be deeply in thrall to The Crazy."

    Oh yeah, really? Are you saying that he suggested that there's a womyn trapped into Mr Smith's body? If so, could you provide the quote to that effect, dear Bob, please?

    1. Hey, you really have a bee in your bonnet on that "womyn trapped" thing, don't you psycho? Give it a rest and try the war on Christmas for a week or two.

    2. Mao brings up the idea so often it’s beginning to sound like a confession

  4. If there isn't a plea to the rubes to send him money, Trump didn't write it.

  5. "More on these dangers next week."

    Week or weeks? Thanks for the warning.

  6. Interesting to note that fruitcake/blowhard Mark Levin started very anti-Trump himself. I guess he can't get enough winning.
    "Overwrought" "Disordered", what kind phrases Bob can
    extend if he's not talking about (or dodging a point made) by
    Nicolle Wallace or Rachel Madow. Whatever, for more typically deranged Trump babble check out the excerpts of the
    rape deposition. As Bob extends the insanity defense
    to Trump once again, at least he spares us the (false)
    contention that the Press has never given consideration
    to Trump's mental state.
    Donald Trump is quite mad, but there is a method to
    his madness. It is supported by cruelty, meanness,
    stupidity, vanity, and ruthlessness. Such leaders, some
    with a tad more content, have emerged before. They
    can be successful with people who share these aspects,
    or have been beaten down and our confused as to why
    their lot is not like the rich people they see on TV.
    To them he is a protector.
    And all of this was pretty obvious a long time ago.
    The guilt of the left and the left press is to try to pin down
    Trump but largely ignore the ugliness of those who have
    made Trump possible. Kellyanne Conway, still viewed
    as a credible person or even the respectable
    opposition, still is welcome on the New York Times
    Op Ed page. Mo Dowd gets to farm out her
    column to other dunces in the family.
    What is Bob's equivalent of this rant, or the
    rant at the rape deposition, or several thousand
    other examples made by a Political Party, truly
    in the thrall of the Crazy, who made this miserable
    bastard the leader of the West? Will it be something
    like citing a study Bob disagrees with in one Op
    Ed? Boy that really makes us equal doesn't it?

  7. If Trump is mentally ill, so are the people who elected him. Nothing on the left is equivalent.

  8. Really, Joe Bob Bill?

    An irate Trump expressed the exact sort of things you and anonymices constantly express about Republicans, DoJ officials investigating Democrats, and any elections that you lose.

    1. So you accept Somerby’s view that Trump is mentally ill, and that his rant about Smith is evidence of this, and also agree with Joe Bob Bill, that the people who elected Trump are mentally ill? You only took issue with Joe’s second sentence.

    2. If you define personality disorders as mental illness, then both Trump, some anonymices,, and a few other public people are mentally ill.

      I generally don’t define such things as mental illness, depending upon the amount of maladjustment.

      I’ve never called anonymices crazy.

      No, I’m not so driven by fear and loathing that I confer mental illness on large swaths of the populace because they support a politician who I feel is a con artist.

      But I’m sure that you’ll do you.

    3. This comment has been removed by the author.

    4. Trump is a con artist, Cecelia? How long have you felt this way, since before you voted for him the first time, or only after he was elected, when you voted for him a second time?

      And if he is a con artist, that implies that he knows what he is doing, that he is a liar, which again contradicts Somerby’s (and your own) assertions that Trump is a victim in the grip of a severe mental illness.

      “I’ve never called anonymices crazy.”

      “both Trump, some anonymices,, and a few other public people are mentally ill.”

      What is the distinction you wish to make between “mentally ill” and “crazy?”


    5. mh, I told you what my probable reaction would be if I felt about any politician as many people do about Trump.I understand that folks here think Trump is the second coming of Hitler and Godzilla and therefore anyone else would have to see that too, otherwise they’re voting on Hitler and Godzilla.

      I get you, but these are people who get so hysterical that they wind up yelling at bloggers that they're sell-outs and pedophiles and they invariably start exhibiting every personality disorder in the DSM.

      There’s no addressing that.

    6. “ they wind up yelling at bloggers”

      Now we have it. That’s the ultimate sin in your little world.

    7. Right, mh. That’s the sort of reply you get from people who use “lie” like it’s a generic term,

    8. "sorts of things and anonymices" this qualifies as both weasel words and industrial strength bullshit. So I guess claiming you were the candidate with the most votes (which Clinton was, and She conceded the race to Trump on Election Night) is "sort of" like claiming you won the popular vote when you lost, and leading a riot to attack the Capitol which killed two people (and much more) ? How did those investigations into Clinton go? What have they produced?
      idiots like you, with zero sense of the common decency required to be truthful, are destroying our Country, Cecelia. There is nothing vague about the lies Trump tells every tine he opens his mouth, and they are nothing like standard political parlance.

    9. LOL, Cecelia. Trump was "irate"? You don't say.

  9. Somerby has always been unclear about whether Trump is a sociopath or delusional. He has suggested both, but now seems to lean in favor of diagnosing Trump as severely mentally ill and delusional.

    He could of course be both, but as I have pointed out before, one characteristic of sociopaths is deliberate lying. That is how Somerby first described Trump, following Bandy Lee’s lead. And as soon as Lee began urging that Trump be prosecuted, Somerby never mentioned her again.

    So Somerby has adopted his own little narrative about Trump: Trump might really believe what he is saying, which makes him severely mentally ill, so we shouldn’t call him a liar. Somerby never considers that Trump believes none of what he says, or is lying for a reason. The purpose of Trump’s rant about Smith seems designed to poison Smith’s reputation with the public and corrupt any potential future jury pool in cases he might bring. This is part of Trump’s MO. He did something similar with Judge Curiel in 2016.

    1. “Trump might really believe what he is saying, which makes him severely mentally ill, so we shouldn’t call him a liar.”

      Or mh…you could do what you’d do with some other liberal who isn’t a politician or a blogger. You would have common sense enough to not call everything that is inaccurate or not to your political liking a “lie”.

    2. It’s hard to disagree with the point I made, which is that the purpose of Trump’s rant was to poison the public against Smith, and that Trump has done this many times. That suggests that he doesn’t actually believe what he is saying, but that it is a deliberate tactic. You know, like “con artists” use. (That was your phrase). It ought to be important to point out this deceptive tactic that Trump uses, which consists of deliberate lies/bullshit to dupe his marks. But “you do you.”

  10. Crazy or sociopathic?

    “I will sue her after this is over, and that’s the thing I really look forward to doing. And I’ll sue you too because this is—how many cases do you have? Many, many cases. I will be suing you also, but I’ll be suing her very strongly as soon as this case ends. But I’ll be suing you also.”

    — Donald Trump, in a deposition in E. Jean Carroll’s lawsuit against him, to her lawyer.

    1. The idlest of all threats, is to be sued by Donald J. Trump.
      Does not understanding how "discovery" works, make one crazy or a sociopath?

  11. “It would help if we, over here in our tribe, stayed away from similar nuttiness”

    Somerby needs to make up his mind.
    He has frequently angrily attacked liberals for their ugly rhetoric on race, which he ascribes to liberal hatred for the “others” and a desire to feel morally superior.

    Now he brings up “nuttiness” and the “Crazy” in connection with liberals. I have no idea what examples he has in mind, but does this signal that he wishes to extend his sympathy now to liberals the way he does to crazy Republicans?

    Besides, the “nuttiness”, including Trump’s rants, seem to be just what Republicans want. He is still their front runner, and the party has embraced most of his delusions about the election and Jan 6, among many others.

    Nuttiness works for Republicans. They just won the House, albeit by a very slim margin, which ironically magnifies the power of the craziest Republican congresspersons.

    How do you counter actual craziness?

  12. No More Mister Nice Blog asks why Republicans are viewed as the salt of the earth when they are frequently overexcitable and hysterical over minor changes, many of which aren't even enacted. For example:

    "Also see the right's response to the suggestion that it might be appropriate to ban gas stoves in order to reduce childhood asthma -- an idea that isn't even remotely close to being enacted, and that has been explicitly rejected by the Biden administration:
    “I’ll NEVER give up my gas stove,” Rep. Ronny Jackson (R-TX) tweeted on Tuesday. “If the maniacs in the White House come for my stove, they can pry it from my cold dead hands. COME AND TAKE IT!!”

    ... “You’ll have to pry it from my COLD DEAD HANDS!,” Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) tweeted, paired with a video of his dirty stovetop.

    “God. Guns. Gas stoves,” fellow MAGA-infused Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) wrote....

    “First, the liberals came for our light bulbs,” [Nikki] Haley tweeted on Thursday. “Then, they came for our cars. Now, they’re coming for our stoves.”
    Don't get me wrong -- Republicans can be very dangerous. They have some real governmental power, and will have a lot more if their party retakes the Senate and the White House in two years. Rank-and-file Republicans have guns.

    But they're also comically overexcited and scared. And that should be their image.

    A few decades ago, the religious right rose to prominence in America. They did a lot of damage at the peak of their power and are still dangerous -- but their ability to enact their agenda was kept in check partly by the widespread perception that they were absurd people who were terrified of harmless pleasures and wanted to impose their own ridiculous fears on the rest of us. That image suffused popular culture -- in Footloose, they banned dancing, for heaven's sake!

    We try to mock right-wingers by saying that they're not bright or that they like guns in order to compensate for, um, personal inadequacies. We need to say that they're highly emotional people who think they're under threat at every moment because they're terrified."

    The diagnostic term for this might be histrionic personality disorder. Or it could be classified as an anxiety disorder, which would be considered a major mental illness. Even Cecelia displays such symptoms, when she thinks children need overprotection from nameless threats in public schools.

  13. Talking about George Santos, Scott Lemieux (Lawyers, Guns & Money blog) says:

    "But in Republican world it’s not a lie if you want to believe it."

  14. Driftglass shows in actual photos how the NY Times torpedoes liberal candidates and politicians with more coverage of negative stories than of policy issues, with a comparison of Biden's current document problems and the way the Times covered Hillary's emails.

  15. Anticipating that conservatives will try to repurpose MLK's words to imply that we should be a color-blind society (as I fully expect Somerby will tell us tomorrow on MLK Day), Yastreblansky (Rectification of Names blog) has written this explanation of the meaning of MLK's often quoted words:

    Martin Luther King Jr was the wokest of us all, he says.