Donald Trump IS a Third Party Candidate (and the Next U.S. President)


Donald Trump is a third-party candidate. He is the candidate of the Trump Cult Party. He has put together a new coalition of the scared and the disgruntled that cuts across old, traditional political party lines. The Democrats cannot attack his policies because on many crucial issues he shares their views. The Republicans don’t dare to confront or shun him because he has garnered millions of largely new votes.

So, his opponents, left and right alike, are reduced to impugning his personality: his narcissism, aggression, lability, ignorance, poor judgement, vindictiveness, and “thin skin” (hypervigilance).

But there are two problems with this strategy:

First, it is the pot (Clinton) calling the kettle (Trump) black. Clinton’s personality is far from perfect. There are good grounds to assume that she would score highly on psychopathy tests, such as the PCL-R (if she were to respond to the questionnaires and the structured interviews honestly, of course).

maga-rorschach-gb-256Second, the electorate seems to be engaging in something psychotherapists call “reframing.” Simply put, Trump is given the unlimited benefit of the sempiternal doubt. His most blatant and egregious misconduct is invariably re-interpreted positively (reframed). Even those who are not his fans and supporters find it difficult to believe and to accept that people like Trump actually walk the earth: vile, raging, vengeful, dysempathic, and relentlessly exploitative. They prefer to try to “understand him” in their own, more humane and more human, terms.

Thus, Trump’s foul, profane, and violent language and harangues are reframed as “straight talk” or “speaking truth to power.” His constant reversals of positions and compulsive lying are reframed as “flexibility, agility, and the art of the deal.” His paranoid racism is merely an attempt to protect Americans against the abuse heaped on them by foreigners and some minorities. He is uncouth and outlandishly ignorant? He lacks even a modicum of curiosity? He encourages a violent discourse of conflict, in both speech and action? He goes after critics and adversaries in ways that are both cruel and unfair? Just goes to show that he is the badass Americans need in order to fend off the threats posed by a hostile, deranged world.

Trump can do no wrong precisely because of this background process of reframing. His combustible temperament and character flaws are not handicaps – they are his main electoral assets! This is why he doesn’t do “presidential.” People don’t want presidential! They want a hellraiser, an iconoclast, a hater they can sympathize with and who can resonate with their basest anxieties and reflexes.

Donald Trump is also about another megatrend: disintermediation, dispensing with the intermediaries, the brokers, and the go-betweens. Aided and abetted by empowering technology, the “crowd” is contemptuously getting rid of the elites. Books are self-published without the beneficial involvement of editors; encyclopaedias are written by the masses, having dispensed with academic scholars and intellectuals; Investments are made and currencies minted online while circumventing bankers and policymakers; news is published without gatekeepers such as editors and anchors. It is the age of the mob and mob rule (ochlocracy).

The well-heeled had been in control of the plutocracy, aka United States, ever since its inception. But the rich deployed puppeteered politicians to do their bidding and pull the levers of power on their behalf. Trump is simply dispensing with the intermediaries. No longer in need of politicians to do his dirty work for him, he is openly taking over the machinery of power. The billionaire class is now poised to rule America directly and openly as it did in its founding years, when a club of gentlemen ruled the nation. We have come full circle, albeit this time around, it is no gentleman, but a barbarian at the gates. Americans seem to be gleefully and suicidally handing him the keys.

Sam Vaknin is the author of “Malignant Self-love: Narcissism Revisited” and other books and e-books about personality disorders in general and pathological narcissism in particular. His work is cited widely in both scholarly literature and the media. His YouTube channels have 45,000 subscribers and more than 15,000,000 views.

“Make America Great Again” cap from Triple Clean, Amazon


  1. ** vile, raging, vengeful, dysempathic, and relentlessly exploitative. **

    Holy mackerel. Where do you get this garbage from?

  2. This article sounds like it was written by a die-hard shell-shocked Hillary supporter.

    Who needs objectivity or reason when we have hysteria and wholly unfounded theoretical “failures” of both Trump and tens of *millions* of fellow Americans to point and scream irrationally at.

    The Donald isn’t a monster. His supporters aren’t fools; in fact, his supporters are the ones who are still making America work. This author almost sounds like the communist agent-provocateur this site otherwise seems to oppose.

    Trash like this is almost enough to make a new visitor feel unwelcome…especially if we voted for Donald Trump.

    Maybe the author would be more at-home over at where EVERY POTUS is evil incarnate..

  3. Arlen ~
    So when did you change your mind about President Trump?

    Witnessing how President Trump has actually governed, where’s the article from Sam Vaknin apologizing for getting his diagnosis 180° wrong?

    Or yours?

    • From what we last published by Dr. Vaknin, I believe we have both settled into the view that Donald Trump clearly displays the behavior of a celebrity narcissist, which is not the danger of other forms of narcissism. Actually, his desire to maintain his image in the public view can contribute to a sense of being accountable, even in history. And, I believe he has made strides in his sense of personal responsibly since his election campaign.

      Scrutiny was called for by President Trump’s life history and his behavior at the time those articles were written. I am grateful to Sam Vaknin for devoting his time and expertise to that important matter; also honored to publish his articles about it.

Speak Your Mind