The President has some serious ego issues. I mean really -- why does he feel the insatiable need to be the center of media attention? How many press conferences, speeches and interviews do we need to see and hear on a daily basis?
One simple answer: Obama suffers from Narcissistic Personality Disorder.
The narcissist in this must-read column by Sam Vaknin, Ph.D.:
* Feels grandiose and self-important (e.g., exaggerates accomplishments, talents, skills, contacts, and personality traits to the point of lying, demands to be recognised as superior without commensurate achievements);
* Is obsessed with fantasies of unlimited success, fame, fearsome power or omnipotence, unequalled brilliance (the cerebral narcissist), bodily beauty or sexual performance (the somatic narcissist), or ideal, everlasting, all-conquering love or passion;
* Firmly convinced that he or she is unique and, being special, can only be understood by, should only be treated by, or associate with, other special or unique, or high-status people (or institutions);
* Requires excessive admiration, adulation, attention and affirmation – or, failing that, wishes to be feared and to be notorious (Narcissistic Supply);
* Feels entitled. Demands automatic and full compliance with his or her unreasonable expectations for special and favourable priority treatment;
* Is "interpersonally exploitative", i.e., uses others to achieve his or her own ends;
* Devoid of empathy. Is unable or unwilling to identify with, acknowledge, or accept the feelings, needs, preferences, priorities, and choices of others;
* Constantly envious of others and seeks to hurt or destroy the objects of his or her frustration. Suffers from persecutory (paranoid) delusions as he or she believes that they feel the same about him or her and are likely to act similarly;
* Behaves arrogantly and haughtily. Feels superior, omnipotent, omniscient, invincible, immune, "above the law", and omnipresent (magical thinking). Rages when frustrated, contradicted, or confronted by people he or she considers inferior to him or her and unworthy.
Narcissism is a defense mechanism whose role is to deflect hurt and trauma from the victim's "True Self" into a "False Self" which is omnipotent, invulnerable, and omniscient. This False Self is then used by the narcissist to garner narcissistic supply from his human environment. Narcissistic supply is any form of attention, both positive and negative and it is instrumental in the regulation of the narcissist's labile sense of self-worth.
Perhaps the most immediately evident trait of patients with Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) is their vulnerability to criticism and disagreement. Subject to negative input, real or imagined, even to a mild rebuke, a constructive suggestion, or an offer to help, they feel injured, humiliated and empty and they react with disdain (devaluation), rage, and defiance.
Sodahead brought us the DSM IV-TR definition:
Narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) is a personality disorder defined by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, the diagnostic classification system used in the United States, as "a pervasive pattern of grandiosity, need for admiration, and a lack of empathy."
DSM IV-TR criteria
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
2) is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love
3) believes that he or she is "special"
4) requires excessive admiration
5) has a sense of entitlement
6) is interpersonally exploitative
7) lacks empathy
8) is often envious of others or believes others are envious of him or her
shows arrogant, haughty behaviors or attitudes
Sound like anyone WE know?
World Net Daily has this nugget:
He subtly misrepresents facts, opportunistically shifts positions, ignores data that conflict with his fantasy world, is overly confident and acts presidential despite commensurate merits and his modest life achievements, considers himself above the law, talks about himself in the third person, has a messianic vision of himself and his "mission," displays false modesty while often evincing haughtiness, sublimates aggression, holds grudges and behaves as an eternal adolescent. These are narcissistic traits as seen in Sen. Obama by Dr. Sam Vaknin. The author of "The Malignant Self Love," Vaknin states, "Barack Obama appears to be a narcissist."
NPD is the prime disorder experienced by all the madmen of history – from Hitler to Stalin, Mao, Kim, Pol Pot, Osama, Khomeini, Saddam and Idi Amin. These men wreaked havoc and killed millions. They looked normal. Few suspected their insanity until it was too late.
Obama shares something else with these infamous narcissists: a chaotic childhood. One determining factor in the development of NPD is childhood abuse, such as the neglecting of his or her emotional needs.
Finally, The Reaganite Republican had a great piece about Obama's NPD as it pertained to his Alinsky-esque attack on Rush Limbaugh earlier this year.