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Current location: Seattle, WA
Member since: Tue Nov 23, 2004, 11:22 PM
Number of posts: 8,558

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Disrupt, distract, dissipate, while busily transforming our governement in ways...

...that are likely to take many, many years to repair.

Perhaps that’s precisely the intent: Disrupt, distract, dissipate, and drown out independent voices and inconvenient realities while fulfilling his agenda with an eager Republican Congress. Critics and the press chase their tails in a tizzy, while Trump’s executive orders get signed and cabinet picks get confirmed, one by one. More

Amid the distraction of the chaotic horror show he is definitely "getting things done."

All of this smoke is missing the steady progress that the modern Republican Party is achieving,” said Grover Norquist, the longtime anti-tax advocate. “The idea that Trump isn’t getting anywhere is wrong. Those free market guys are picking up maybe not all the marbles in the world, but a large quantity of them. And we haven’t thrown away any marbles.”... His appointment of Ajit Pai to head the Federal Communications Commission is one of them. Pai is poised to dismantle net neutrality rules, moving away from treating online content as a public utility and toward a system that allows cable and telecom industry interests to control content and traffic. “That appointment,” Norquist said, “is [determining] 16 percent of the economy.”

Some of the things tracked on presterity.org:
Executive action telling government agencies to slash "job killing" rules that environmentalists argue serve as important protections... executive action establishing a framework to scale back the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial-overhaul law... killing off the so-called fiduciary rule requiring brokers and financial advisers to act in the best interest of retirement savers.... remove Neo-Nazi and White Supremacist groups from terror watch list and focus solely on Islamic groups... "unprecedented" approach to staffing cabinet without ethics vetting... spend taxpayer money meant to encourage enrollment in the Affordable Care Act on a public relations campaign aimed at methodically strangling it... Actions by the Trump administration are triggering double-digit premium increases on individual health insurance policies purchased by many people... signs an executive order that will allow federal contractors to discriminate against LGBT employees... intervening in an important private employment case, urged a federal appeals court to rule that civil rights law does not bar job discrimination based on sexual orientation... revives Reagan-era ban on use of foreign aid for abortion counseling... FCC is stopping nine companies from providing federally subsidized Internet to the poor... Individuals with Disabilities Education website vanishes without explanation... Trump administration revoked a grant to Life After Hate, a group that works to de-radicalize neo-Nazis... DOJ Argues Title VII Does Not Protect LGBTQ People... appointed an activist who led a campaign to restrict bathroom access for transgender students to the office of Gender Equality and Women's Empowerment in the US Agency for International Development.... emoving sexual orientation and gender identity from the list of categories explicitly protected from discrimination in its latest equal employment opportunity statement... executive order that will allow federal contractors to discriminate against LGBT employees... Appoints Anti-LGBTQ Activist to Lead HHS Civil Rights Office... rescinded directive that sought to curtail the government’s use of private prisons... Sessions and Cook bringing back the national crime strategy of the 1980s and ’90s from the peak of the drug war... abandoning Paris agreement on climate change... made it harder for workers to set up retirement accounts and has delayed the implementation of workplace safety rules... repealed a regulation protecting workers from wage theft... allowed employers with spotty labor records to get government contracts... Occupational Safety and Health Administration has hit the brakes on a rule that would require firms to report worker injury data online.

I fear that the actions that are big enough, or implemented at a level high enough, to make the news are just the tip of the iceberg compared to damage being done by the systematic decimation of executive regulatory functions going on at every level. And this doesn't even touch on his abusive use of executive power over foreign policy, which is making the world a more dangerous .place, not to mention his withdrawal from efforts to use of our influence and dollars to advance human rights.

Human beings are naturally pulled in when confronted with something that is beyond understanding. As we witness DT's evermore explosive and bizarre verbal diarrhea, our attention is diverted. At the same time, we are being overwhelmed by the shear volume and breadth of the damaging actions he's pulling off. Generalized opposition is strong, but a whole lot is getting by without fanfare or organized opposition.

NYTimes: How to Make Fun of Nazis

The New York Times
The Opinion Pages

How to Make Fun of Nazis
AUG. 17, 2017

For decades, Wunsiedel, a German town near the Czech border, has struggled with a parade of unwanted visitors. It was the original burial place of one of Adolf Hitler’s deputies, a man named Rudolf Hess. And every year, to residents’ chagrin, neo-Nazis marched to his grave site. The town had staged counterdemonstrations to dissuade these pilgrims. In 2011 it had exhumed Hess’s body and even removed his grave stone. But undeterred, the neo-Nazis returned. So in 2014, the town tried a different tactic: humorous subversion.

The campaign, called Rechts Gegen Rechts — the Right Against the Right — turned the march into Germany’s “most involuntary walkathon.” For every meter the neo-Nazis marched, local residents and businesses pledged to donate 10 euros (then equivalent to about $12.50) to a program that helps people leave right-wing extremist groups, called EXIT Deutschland.

They turned the march into a mock sporting event. Someone stenciled onto the street “start,” a halfway mark and a finish line, as if it were a race. Colorful signs with silly slogans festooned the route. “If only the Führer knew!” read one. “Mein Mampf!” (my munch) read another that hung over a table of bananas. A sign at the end of the route thanked the marchers for their contribution to the anti-Nazi cause — €10,000 (close to $12,000). And someone showered the marchers with rainbow confetti at the finish line.

The approach has spread to several other German towns and one in Sweden (where it was billed as Nazis Against Nazis).

This week, following the violence in Charlottesville, Va., Wunsiedel has come back into the news. Experts in nonviolent protest say it could serve as a model for Americans alarmed by the resurgent white supremacist movement who are looking for an effective way to respond (and who might otherwise be tempted to meet violence with violence).

We've got to be able to come up with something equivalent. Let's work to turn every hate group rally into a pledge drive for the Southern Poverty Law Center (other suggestions welcome). Call on sane people to contribute X dollars to anti-hate cause for every every hateful person who shows up at the rally. Put up a big fund raising thermometer. Cheers and thanks to the assholes who show up for their part in raising money for such a wonderful cause.

DT is mentally ill: Antisocial Personality Disorder and Narcissistic Personality Disorder

DT is mentally ill. He meets the criteria for Antisocial and Narcissistic Personality Disorders. And based on public conduct, I have no doubt that an evaluation would put him way up on the Psychopathy Checklist.

Lying and "distorting reality" are hallmarks. He breaks every rule in the book in pursuit of his own ends. He lies and distorts reality to rationalize and justify his wrongful conduct. To puff up his over-inflated ego he stereotypes and denigrates those he sees as out-groups. His callous disregard for others and sense of entitlement appear to know no bounds. He weaves grandiose tales of his fearsome power, omnipotence, and unequaled brilliance. He is proudly abrasive and offensive. He clearly enjoys humiliating and embarrassing others, but reacts to any perceived slight to his own person, appearance, or accomplishments aggressively and vindictively.

I'm sure there have been U.S. presidential candidates, and presidents, who could be diagnosed with a personality disorder of some sort, but I can't think any of who exhibited this level of psychopathy. I can't think of any who met as many diagnostic criteria for Antisocial Personality Disorder, or who met as many criteria for Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

Regarding Personality Disorders in general

There are four defining features of personality disorders. These are:

1) Distorted thinking patterns,
2) Problematic emotional responses,
3) Over- or under-regulated impulse control, and
4) Interpersonal difficulties.

I think it is pretty clear that DT exhibits these defining features.

Antisocial Personality Disorder DSM-5 301.7 (F60.2)

{Lengthy discussion that proceeds diagnostic criteria omitted}

There are four diagnostic criterion, of which Criterion A has seven sub-features
A. Disregard for and violation of others rights since age 15, as indicated by three of the seven sub features:
1. Failure to obey laws and norms by engaging in behavior which results in criminal arrest, or would warrant criminal arrest
2. Lying, deception, and manipulation, for profit tor self-amusement,
3. Impulsive behavior
4. Irritability and aggression, assaults others, or engages in fighting
5. Blatantly disregards safety of self and others,
6. A pattern of irresponsibility and
7. Lack of remorse for actions (American Psychiatric Association, 2013)

The other diagnostic Criterion are:
B. The person is at least age 18,
C. Conduct disorder was present by history before age 15
D. and the antisocial behavior does not occur in the context of schizophrenia or bipolar disorder

(American Psychiatric Association, 2013)

DT meets A. He shows "Disregard for and violation of the rights of others." He exhibits at least four of the seven "sub-features."
Specifically 1 (sexual assault clearly warrants arrest), 2, 3, and 7 (I don't think there would be any argument on these three). Arguably he exhibits some of the remaining features. For example, he probably meets 3. He is clearly "irritable and aggressive," but I don't know of any reports of physical assaults in adulthood.

He only needs three of the sub-features to meet the criteria for A "Disregard for and violation of the rights of others"

He is certainly over 18, and from descriptions of him as a kid in [link:http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/film/the-choice-2016/transcript/"Frontline: The Choice 2016]" he exhibited the same characteristics (plus physical aggression) from a young age.

Narcissistic Personality Disorder DSM-5 301.81 (F60.81)

The definition of NPD states that it is comprised of a persistent manner of grandiosity, a continuous desire for admiration, along with a lack of empathy. It starts by early adulthood and occurs in a range of situations, as signified by the existence of any 5 of the next 9 standards (American Psychiatric Association, 2013):
-- A grandiose logic of self-importance
-- A fixation with fantasies of infinite success, control, brilliance, beauty, or idyllic love
-- A credence that he or she is extraordinary and exceptional and can only be understood by, or should connect with, other extraordinary or important people or institutions
-- A desire for unwarranted admiration
-- sense of entitlement
-- Interpersonally oppressive behavior
-- No form of empathy
-- Resentment of others or a conviction that others are resentful of him or her
-- A display of egotistical and conceited behaviors or attitudes

On this one I'd say he's nine for nine (and only needs five for diagnosis).

The "Psychopathy Checklist" is highly correlated with the criteria for Antisocial Personality Disorder and Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Scoring is based on a structured interview, but, given the degree to which DT meets the criteria for Antisocial Personality Disorder and Narcissistic Personality Disorder, I have no doubt that DT's psychopathy score is very high.

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