Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Sleepless in Trump Tower

Doris Lessing once wrote that severe and extended sleep deprivation is a sure way to induce psychosis. She was speaking from experience, having at one point experimented with that technique of entering an altered state. She emerged with warnings against said regimen.

A version of the psychosis Lessing induced by staying awake may be Trump's modus vivendi. In a fascinating piece for the NY Times, Timothy Egan wrote:

If you actually take him at his word, the billionaire who will be 70 years old in a few months gets by on barely half the amount of sleep recommended for a healthy life. He says he needs only three or four hours, and sometimes just 90 minutes.

Egan adds, "He shows all the scary symptoms of sleep deprivation. His judgment is off, and  almost always ill informed. He has trouble processing basic information. He imagines things. He shows a lack of concentration. He’s easily distracted. All of the above are disorder symptoms listed by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. . .

In addition, writes Egan, "Trump is given to sudden, inchoate bursts of anger and profanity. He creates feuds. In his speeches, he picks up on the angry voice in the mob and then amplifies it."

Whether originating in sleep deprivation or not, I can't say for sure. But there's no doubt that Trump displays the kinds of psychotic ideation/behavior that Egan describes.

We've had some strange and destructive Presidents, but never anyone I know of on the order of Trump. GW Bush, for example, wasn't psychotic, just unforgivably vacuous and stupid. Even his vice-president, Dick Cheney, wasn't psychotic; he's better described as plain evil, whether or not that's a category in the new DSM. And even Richard Nixon, at his paranoid worst, remained, if barely, on the sane side of the ledger.

I'm tempted to say Trump's psychotic approach to reality is key to his appeal. He shows no restraint, has few second thoughts, and the lack thereof is not voluntary. He's nuts, fearlessly, necessarily nuts. He speaks to the demon most of us manage not to be, triggers that same demon in those who admire him.

He's the candidate of psychosis. And why shouldn't psychotics have a turn? The ones who never take meds, I mean, or get off them. I'm sure Trump has had prescriptions he just refused to fill.

He's Trump. Not taking meds and running for President of the United States is  better than anti-psychotics. Keeps you going.

Being crazy is the key to Donaldissimo.

Can you envision this nut case with the launch codes for atomic war?

Maybe he'll appoint David Duke as Secretary of State.

Or maybe he'll meltdown.

He's due for dysfunction, or a convincing dose of barbiturates.

1 comment:

  1. The voting public needs to be educated to recognise the varieties of neurological ... ahem... difference, (let's not dare to say dysfunction) before choosing a candidate. A necessary can of worms to open!