What is Wrong with Barack Obama?

Well, in the first place he is incredibly arrogant, haughty, full-of-himself, and entitled. He appears to have almost no empathy for other people. On the other hand, he is very good at using people as long as he wants something from them, and then throwing them under the bus when he no longer needs them. For starters, just ask Rev. Wright, Rev., Pfleger, the members of Trinity United Church of Christ, “former” advisors Samantha Power and Austen Goolsbee, Jim Johnson (former VP committe member), whoever created the “Great Possum Seal,” the “progressive” bloggers who supported him unstintingly for months, and his own grandmother. In fact Obama has added a new cliche to the American vernacular, “He (or she) wasn’t the person I once knew.”

A number of Conflucians have noted in comments that Obama is highly narcissistic. I’d say that’s an understatement. In fact, I would argue that he suffers from Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD). Personality disorders are enduring patterns in the way a someone perceives the world, relates to other people, and reacts to events. These behaviors are dysfunctional and affect a person’s functioning in many aspects of life.

NOTE: Approximately 75% of people diagnosed with NPD are men. Therefore, for the sake of convenience, I will refer to the narcissist as “he” and the narcissist’s partner as “she.”

Although people with NPD act haughty and entitled, on an unconscious level, they may actually have doubts about their own abilities, competence, and loveability. Because of this unconscious lack of self-esteem, they constantly need to see their own uniqueness and greatness reflected in the eyes of other people. They expect the people in their lives to provide them with what Sam Vankin calls “narcissistic supply,” meaning unstinting attention, admiration, and praise. People with NPD are often highly sensitive to criticism and they hate to lose. They may become enraged when they don’t get the admiration they expect or when they fail to live up to the high opinion they have of themselves. Because they envy people who are more successful than they are, they frequently believe that people are just as envious of them.

People with NPD can be superficially charming, and they seem to have a special radar that attracts people who are needy and dysfunctional and will gladly provide “narcissistic supply” in return for basking in the narcissist’s reflected glory. For most people, the veneer of the narcissist soon grows thin, and his arrogant, entitled behavior soon becomes annoying and drives them away. And if the narcissist’s significant other begins taking an interest in her own well being instead of focusing on meeting the narcissist’s needs for attention and approval, the narcissist will dump her with no compunctions or regrets.

According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of the American Psychiatric Association (DSM IV-TR), NPD is characterized by

A pervasive pattern of grandiosity (in fantasy or behavior), need for admiration, and lack of empathy, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts, as indicated by five (or more) of the following:

1. has a grandiose sense of self-importance (e.g., exaggerates achievements and talents, expects to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements)

2. is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love

3. believes that he or she is “special” and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people (or institutions)

4. requires excessive admiration

5. has a sense of entitlement, i.e., unreasonable expectations of especially favorable treatment or automatic compliance with his or her expectations

6. is interpersonally exploitative, i.e., takes advantage of others to achieve his or her own ends

7. lacks empathy: is unwilling to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others

8. is often envious of others or believes that others are envious of him

9. shows arrogant, haughty behaviors or attitudes

Honestly, couldn’t a psychiatrist examining Barack Obama check off every item on the list? Let’s look at just a few examples.

1. has a grandiose sense of self-importance (e.g., exaggerates achievements and talents, expects to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements)

To check off this item, a shrink would only have to look at the fact that Obama chose to run for POTUS with almost no relevevant qualifications or experience and with such a thin resume that he has barely ever held a full-time job (h/t Katiebird). He has based his presidential campaign on the fact that he was a “community organizer” in the 1980s (even though he had no tangible accomplishments), was president of the Harvard Law Review in the 1990s (although he wrote no articles for publication), his undistinguished tenure as a state senator in IL, and an anti-war speech in 1992 that wasn’t even audio- or video-taped and didn’t rate even a mention in the local papers. Oh, and he wrote two autobiographical books by his mid-40s. He claims to have been a “civil rights attorney” (although he has argued no cases in court) and a consitutional law professor” (although he was really a part-time adjunct instructor who never published a single peer reviewed article).

2. is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love

From a press release from Hillary Clinton’s campaign, 12/2/07:

“Iis Darmawan, 63, Senator Obama’s kindergarten teacher, remembers him as an exceptionally tall and curly haired child who quickly picked up the local language and had sharp math skills. He wrote an essay titled, ‘I Want To Become President,’ the teacher said.” [AP, 1/25/07 ]

His third grade teacher: Fermina Katarina Sinaga “asked her class to write an essay titled ‘My dream: What I want to be in the future.’ Senator Obama wrote ‘I want to be a President,’ she said.” [The Los Angeles Times, 3/15/07]

In addition, Obama told his brother

‘I think I’d like to teach at some point in time, and maybe run for public office,’ recalls Robinson, who assumed Senator Obama meant he’d like to run for city alderman. “He said no — at some point he’d like to run for the U.S. Senate. And then he said, ‘Possibly even run for President at some point.’ And I was like, ‘Okay, but don’t say that to my Aunt Gracie.’ I was protecting him from saying something that might embarrass him.”

His Harvard law classmates also report that Obama frequently talked about becoming President.

3. believes that he or she is “special” and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people (or institutions)

For this one the shink need look no further than Obama’s denigration of working class people as “bitter,” gun-toting religious nuts who are too stupid to see his wonderfulness. And of course he made these remarks in front of group of wealthy elitist snobs in San Franciso’s most hoity-toity neighborhood.

4. requires excessive admiration

Obama’s appearances before huge audiences, his desire to speak in front of the Brandenburg Gate in Germany like Ronald Reagan did as President, his encouragement of a rabid, cult-like following all demonstrate this need in Obama.

5. has a sense of entitlement, i.e., unreasonable expectations of especially favorable treatment or automatic compliance with his or her expectations

This one is easy. Obama acted like he had won the nomination after his win in the Iowa caucuses; after he lost in the New Hampshire primary, he still encouraged his followers to call on Hillary Clinton to drop out of the race. After Super Tuesday, he assumed that the nomination was his and urged his followers and the compliant media to demand that that Clinton must quit because she was hurting his chances in November. Meanwhile, Hillary won Ohio, Rhode Island, Texas, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Kentucky, Puerto Rico, and South Dakota, while Obama was on a downhill slide. Now that Obama is the “presumptive nominee,” he is acting as if he is already President and expecting to be treated as such by foreign leaders and the media.

6. is interpersonally exploitative, i.e., takes advantage of others to achieve his or her own ends

See above references to numerous people who were supportive of Obama for many years and then were thrown under the bus without a second thought.

7. lacks empathy: is unwilling to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others

Evidence for this one: Obama’s treatment of the voters of Florida and Michigan as well as his dismissal of working class voters in Pennsylvana, Ohio, West Virginia, and Kentucky.

8. is often envious of others or believes that others are envious of him

This one is harder to support with clear evidence, but in my opinion, Obama is very envious of the Clintons, because they are able to outshine him. One example of this was Obama’s angry resentment after Hillary crushed him in the Pennsylvania debate. He just couldn’t resist denigrating her, brushing her off his shoulders and shoes, and giving her the finger. Because he envies the Clintons, Obama imagines that they are equally resentful of his success. He just can’t imagine that Bill and Hillary might be unselfishly working for the good of their party and their country, despite Hillary’s “loss” in the primaries.

Obama is now treating John McCain like he treated the Clintons, denigrating him, accusing him of racism and pushing false and unfair smears against Obama. For example, in his announcement in Minneapolis that he was the nominee of the Democratic Party, he complained:

I honor [John McCain’s] service, and I respect his many accomplishments, even if he chooses to deny mine.

Huh? Exactly what accomplishments are those, Barack? And when did McCain “deny” them?

(9) shows arrogant, haughty behaviors or attitudes

For this one, I would recommend that Obama’s shrink read this blog post on Obama’s body language and watch two videos recommended by the body language expert. These videos also demonstrate Obama’s narcissistic rage and resentment toward Hillary Clinton.

NOTE: The body language article and the videos were recently cited by Confluence commenter bmc. Thank you for identifying yourself in the comments. I tried searching the comments where I got the links, but just couldn’t find it.