USA: The Cult of Trump: A Leading Cult Expert Explains How the President Uses Mind Control

BOOK REVIEW by H. Steven Moffic, MD | Psychiatric Times – January 2020

THE CULT OF TRUMP 

It is a new year, an election year, with impeachment looming and the Iranian conflict – funnily enough, this book is not about the President of the United States. IT IS ALL ABOUT CULTS. 

The cover of The Cult of Trump: A Leading Cult Expert Explains How the President Uses Mind Control, sets the mood with President Trump’s last name as well as the ubiquitous red baseball hat worn by his supporters, embossed with the word “cult” in the center. Some psychiatrists may wonder if this book is breaking the American Psychiatric Association’s (APA) “Goldwater Rule” (GR). Rest assured; it is not.       

FIRST, author Steven Hassan is not a psychiatrist and this ethical principle applies only to psychiatrists who are members of the APA. SECONDLY, and subtitle aside, the focus is on cults and how people become attached to them, with President Trump as a crucially considered example.

THE PART OF THE BOOK THAT FOCUSES ON CULT FOLLOWERS IS JUST WHAT WE NEED NOW. Certainly, there has been more than enough speculation on President Trump’s mental state by the public, media, some psychiatrists, and many other mental health care professionals. Less emphasis has been put on what psychologically drives people to follow President Trump, vote for him, and-for better or worse – stay so strongly attached. Whether or not there is really a “Cult of Trump” is debatable, even after you read the persuasive arguments made in this book. At the very least, using the knowledge now available on cults is a helpful way to understand our national political scene and, as far as I can tell, does not violate the GR – Goldwater Rule by focusing on the psychology of his followers.

Unfortunately, psychiatrists as a whole, after a flurry of interest in cults in the 1970s and 1980s and culminating in 1992 with the Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry (GAP) book, Leaders and Followers: A Psychiatric Perspective on Religious Cults, seem to have lost interest in the subject. But cults are still prominent. The author claims that there are at least 5000 destructive cults in the US, and they can range from two people to several thousands.

According to the author, cults can be religious, political, sexual, educational, or psychotherapeutic in nature. If so, we have probably had members in mental health care, but it is hard to determine whether a patient is in a cult due to indoctrination. Therefore, it is crucial to look at control of thoughts and behaviors. Though the author never suggests this, the book led me to wonder if a slight case can be made that the GR holds such control. Indeed, why is an ethical principle like this a “rule” rather than a guideline? In other words, why is it not called and conceived as what I would call the “Goldwater Guidelines”, allowing more freedom of thought and speech for psychiatrists?

All cults have something in common. They strip away freedom of thought and realign ideas with those of the leader. The author discusses his original way of conceptualizing cults, called the BITE model-the acronym for controlled Behavior, Information, Thought, and Emotion.

Even more revelatory was his discussion of how hypnotic techniques such as repetition, subliminal messages, programming amnesia, and even guided meditation can be so effective in swaying followers.

Although the author’s focus is on public understanding and not on psychiatrists, there is still a need for the involvement of psychiatrists with adequate understanding of cults. For example, is there a common and appropriate diagnosis for cult followers? I had thought not. The closest that came to my mind was a classification in DSM-III (1980) called “Identity Disorder”. However, parallel with our decreased interest in cults, by DSM-IV (1994), it was replaced by the term “Identity Problem”. By DSM-5 (2013), that term was removed. Or, was it? The author points out that the DSM-5 classification of Dissociative Disorders: Not Otherwise Specified 300.15 (F44.89) fits. It is described as an “identity disturbance due to prolonged and intense coercive persuasion,” and one of the examples is recruitment by cults.

This view of coercive persuasion goes back to DSM-III-R in 1987, thereby overlapping with the changes in identity nomenclature considerations. Then again, if that Dissociative Disorder is also an “identity disturbance” akin to an identity disorder, why not have left in that DSM-III original nomenclature?

Moreover, Not Otherwise Specified (NOS) has come to be viewed more controversially as a sort of waste basket when better clarity cannot be met. Is the dissociative process the key problem and/or is it someone’s identity change? I suppose one could conclude, as Shakespeare did in Romeo and Juliet, “a rose by any other name would smell as sweet,” an identity disorder by any other name would harm as much. 

In addition to diagnostic considerations, there remains the question of how traditional and mainstream psychiatric treatments may help – or not. I recall a patient of mine, a survivor of the Jonestown, Guyana massacre, who I saw soon after her return home. I wasn’t sure what to do. Her major symptom was bewilderment. How did she get involved and why did so, so many die? I am not sure how I would know any better today how to help someone who left a cult.

Meanwhile, like alcohol and drug abuse counselors, who are often former “addicts”, it often takes former cult members to learn psychology in some depth in order to become trusted and effective counselors. Steven Hassan, a former “Moonie” – or, a follower of the Rev. Sun Myung Moon, provides therapeutic examples that we can learn from in the book.

Given the question of whether there is a “Cult of Trump”, as well as the internet providing new opportunities to establish cults, it behooves all mental health caregivers to learn from such a valuable and timely book. 

Dr Moffic is an editorial board member and regular contributor to Psychiatric Times. He was a tenured Professor at the Medical College of Wisconsin until he retired in 2012. Since then he has functioned as a private community psychiatrist providing pro bono services locally, nationally, and internationally. Currently, Dr Moffic is focused on four major advocacy initiatives: physician burnout, climate instability, Islamophobia, and Anti-Semitism. He is co-editor of Combating Physician Burnout: A Guide for Psychiatrists, with Sheila LoboPrabhu and Richard F. Summers. 

References:

Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry. Leaders and Followers: A Psychiatric Perspective on Religious Cults. American Psychiatric Press; 1992.   

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Comments

  • Clyde Duncan  On 01/15/2021 at 1:42 am

    KAPS wrote:

    It surprises me that it took almost five years for American voters to reach the obvious conclusion that Donald J. Trump was hopelessly incapable of serving as USA’s 45th President.

    He displayed several weaknesses while campaigning towards the end of 2016. But he was allowed to get away with disobeying all of the rules: Trump never did declare his net worth or paid any attention to the rules regarding Nepotism and the paying of taxes. He even refused to testify during his first impeachment. Nor did Robert S. Mueller interview a single member of the Trump family while pursuing that infamous “Witch Hunt” that lasted for almost two years.

    It was eventually agreed by most Americans that Trump was by far the worst of all their politicians. He was easily the most vulgar, the most cruel, the most selfish, the most ignorant, the most greedy, the most silly, the most stupid, and by far the most mendacious of all Presidents anywhere. He made a complete mess of America’s foreign policy as well as their economic and public health programmes.

    Trump sought the friendship of such natural Communist enemies as Russia and North Korea, while ignoring the advice of European democratic leaders. And, in his final year, Trump has made – and is continuing make – every attempt to make matters worse both at home and abroad for Joe Biden, his democratic successor.

    All of the above is well known. But there is another obvious fact that leaves millions of wise observers completely baffled:

    Literally millions of Americans continue to adore this idiot and are determined even now to prevent the Republican party and/or the Senate from impeaching and removing him. They are actually threatening to conduct a serious rebellion to remove from the face of the Earth all of those opponents who are angling to dethrone their innocent hero!

    I can only conclude that this man, Trump, despite his multiple deficiencies, is endowed with a certain but unusual ability to hypnotise millions of persons.

    As my father often noted: “Boy, this world is really full of people”.

  • Clyde Duncan  On 01/15/2021 at 1:44 am

    Henry wrote:

    Meanwhile he could be classified as a mass murderer, because apart from the deaths resulting from the insurrection at the Capitol, tens of thousands have died of COVID-19 at his hands ,as well as infants on the Mexican border – several hundred dying from a variety of causes related to his policies.

    Let us hope he does not do anything much more terrible in the next week! That red button should be covered with a metal box, or perhaps the door to that room locked with deadbolts and windows sealed up.

  • Clyde Duncan  On 01/15/2021 at 2:12 am

    Opinion | The Six Lowest Points of Trump’s Corrupt, Racist, Impeached, Ignorant, Incompetent Clusterf%&k of a Presidency

    David Rothkopf | Haaretz

    As the Trump Era draws to a chaotic, subversive and long-overdue close, it is difficult to look back at it and pick those moments that best define it. Frankly, it is difficult to look back at it at all. But to spare you the effort, I will try.

    IT IS DIFFICULT TO SELECT JUST A FEW SIGNATURE TRUMPIAN MOMENTS, BECAUSE AMERICA’S OUTGOING LEADER HOLDS SO MANY DUBIOUS DISTINCTIONS.

    DONALD TRUMP IS UNDOUBTEDLY AMERICA’S WORST PRESIDENT:

    THE ONLY PRESIDENT to be impeached twice;
    THE ONLY PERSON to lead a coup against the United States government;
    THE ONLY PRESIDENT to preside over and was personally responsible for the greatest one year loss of life in American history;
    THE ONLY PRESIDENT since Herbert Hoover to actually leave office with fewer people employed than when he was sworn in;
    THE ONLY WORLD LEADER to have been summarily banned from virtually all major social media sites because his words were so inflammatory;
    THE MOST PROLIFIC LIAR if not conspiracy theorist in U.S. political history, which is saying something;

    A MAN WHO MANAGED TO BE AT ONCE THE MOST CORRUPT, THE MOST ODIOUS, THE MOST IGNORANT, THE MOST INEFFECTIVE AND THE MOST EVIL POLITICAL LEADER IN U.S. HISTORY.

    ALREADY POLLS OF HISTORIANS HAVE HIM RANKED AT THE VERY BOTTOM OF AMERICA’S LIST OF PRESIDENTS, which is saying something, since many of those presidents were also racists, misogynists, perpetrators of great crimes – from perpetuating slavery to overseeing genocide against indigenous Americans to ordering the first and only use of nuclear weapons in world history.

    American presidents gave the world sex scandals and illegitimate children and the Vietnam War and the invasion of Iraq. They helped drive global warming and turned their back on refugees from foreign atrocities when they could have helped. Some of them were great. Most weren’t. AND OF ALL OF THEM ….

    TRUMP IS THE WORST, THE ABSOLUTE BOTTOM OF THE BARREL.
    AS I HAVE DESCRIBED AT SOME LENGTH IN MY RECENT BOOK, HE IS A TRAITOR. This is not political invective.

    Trump actually worked with American’s foremost foreign enemy to help win election in 2016, and then he serially defended and rewarded that enemy and obstructed justice to hide the evidentiary trail of his efforts and avoid punishment for them.

    TRUMP ALSO TURNED THE U.S. GOVERNMENT INTO HIS PRIVATE PIGGYBANK, PUMPING MILLIONS OF TAXPAYER DOLLARS INTO PROPERTIES HE AND HIS FAMILY OWNED.

    HIS CABINET SET RECORDS FOR INDICTMENTS AND FOR TURNOVER.

    Trump attacked our allies, buttered up autocrats, undermined America’s standing in the world and did I mention he actually led a coup attempt that led to five deaths, thousands being terrorized and the next three people in the presidential line of succession being put in grave danger?

    Further, Trump was so many awful things, it is hard to pick the characteristics that define “Trumpiness”. How do you find events that capture both his narcissism, nepotism and his greed, his stupidity and the damage he did?

    Frankly, you shouldn’t even try. It’ll only give you a headache and remind you of some of the worst days in recent U.S. and world history. I know. That’s the effect it had on me.

    The result was the first major coup attempt in U.S. history. Five people died. Thousands were at risk. The seat of the U.S. legislature was ransacked. The president opined that his pre-riot incitement was “totally appropriate.”

    A week after the attempted insurrection, the U.S. House of Representatives impeached Trump for a second time. True to his standing as America’s Gaslighter-in-Chief, the outgoing president responded in a video that, “NO TRUE SUPPORTER OF MINE COULD EVER ENDORSE POLITICAL VIOLENCE.”

    THE LIST OF DISHONORABLE RUNNER-UP MENTIONS IS LONG. It ranges from his “love letters” to North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Un and the bogus diplomacy that followed, to betraying the Kurds – staunch U.S. allies in the fight against ISIS, to campaigning via foreign policy goodies for Benjamin Netanyahu, from coddling the fascist-adjacent QAnon cult to tossing rolls of paper towels to victims of a deadly hurricane in Puerto Rico – and doing little else to help them – to hundreds of trips to play golf at his own resorts for which taxpayers foot the bill – estimated at over $150 million – to his famous “perfect call” with Ukraine which resulted in his first impeachment.

    TRUMP AND TRUMPINESS ARE INDEED HARD TO CAPTURE IN JUST ONE OR EVEN A SERIES OF EVENTS.

    What we do know is this, so long as Trump is alive there will be more such embarrassments and outrages. But fortunately, after January 20th of this year, the cost to America and the world of each of them is likely to decline precipitously. And for that, at least, we can all be grateful.

  • Clyde Duncan  On 01/15/2021 at 2:46 am

    David Rothkopf’s latest book is “Traitor: A History of Betraying America from Benedict Arnold to Donald Trump.” He is also a podcast host and CEO of The Rothkopf Group. Twitter: @djrothkopf

    Here goes, the six Trumpiest moments of the shit-stormiest clusterf&ck in U.S. political history, in reverse order:

    6. The Upside-Down Bible Photo Op (June 1, 2020)

    With America mourning the brutal murder of a Minneapolis man, George Floyd, at the hands of police, and protests breaking out from coast-to-coast protesting institutional racism in the U.S., Trump had a choice. He could seek to heal the nation or divide it.

    Naturally, Trumpily, he chose to divide, once again playing to the white supremacists that he rightly saw as his political base. But his offensive and irresponsible choices did not stop there. With the assistance of his Attorney General, Bill Barr, and his top Pentagon brass, he mobilized U.S. federal forces to assault a peaceful protest in Lafayette Park across the street from the White House.
    EVEN ADDING AN ATTACK ON FUNDAMENTAL U.S. FREEDOMS TO HIS RACISM WAS NOT ENOUGH.

    To be a truly Trumpian moment, it would have to showcase both his broken personality, and his penchant for grotesque, empty pandering to the Evangelicals who had anointed and then excused and glorified him. In this case, he justified the attack as a way to clear a path for him to walk across the street so he could pose with an upside-down Bible to showcase his values. IT DID.

    5. “I Really Don’t Care, Do You?” (June 21, 2018)

    In a tribute to the degree to which Trump’s Trumpiness was a family enterprise, this incident involved a visit by First Lady Melania Trump to border facilities in McAllen, Texas at which the Trump Administration was holding children in cages, separated from their parents, as part of an immigration crackdown and border-crossing deterrence strategy.

    The treatment of these children, several of whom died in custody and hundreds of whom have never been reunited with their families, has been rightly called a violation of human rights.

    To underscore her views, the Slovenian former soft-core porn model wore a coat that had emblazoned on the back the words, “I Really Don’t Care, Do You?” She didn’t. He doesn’t. That much is clear.

    4. “Very Fine People On Both Sides” (August 15, 2017)

    In the wake of violent protests by white supremacists in Charlottesville, Virginia that claimed the life of one woman, President Trump initially refused to condemn the racist mob that triggered the unrest.

    Finally, two days later, when pressed to comment, Trump chose to normalize the behavior of the neo-Nazi, alt-right, “militia” and Ku Klux Klan groups that marched chanting “Jews will not replace us,” by equating them with those who stood up to their provocations by saying that there were “very fine people on both sides.”

    Not surprisingly, his comments did not help. Nor were they the only time that Trump openly embraced racists or ethno-nationalists.

    Indeed, long before he became president, Trump had a history of being on the wrong side of these issues. He came by it naturally. His father was arrested at a 1927 Ku Klux Klan rally, the Trump Organization was pressured by the Justice Department to ban racist business practices and Trump famously pressed for the death penalty for the ‘Central Park Five’ – young black men who were arrested and pressured to confess to a rape and assault charge despite there being no DNA evidence tying them to the crime.

    Trump began his campaign for president attacking Mexicans and Muslims, enacted a ban on Muslim entry into the U.S. shortly after he took office, fueled an immigrant invasion theory that motivated the perpetrator of the worst massacre of Jews in U.S. history, told minority Democratic Congresswomen they should “go back” to where they came from, instructed the far right Proud Boys to “stand by” during the last weeks of the 2020 campaign and told the racist mob that stormed the Capitol beneath a Confederate battle flag that they were special and that he loved them.

    ALL THESE EVENTS WERE CLASSIC TRUMP. BECAUSE TRUMP IS A CLASSIC RACIST.

    3. “Russia, If You’re Listening…” (July 27, 2016 – now)

    THE ORIGINAL SIN OF THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION WAS TRUMP’S KNOWING COLLABORATION WITH THE RUSSIAN GOVERNMENT TO HELP WIN ELECTION IN 2016. His collusion with Russia – and despite the worst efforts of the president and his supporters to spin it, the Mueller and the Senate investigations both made it clear that there was collusion and plenty of it – cast a shadow over his whole presidency and drove many of his actions, from firing officials who sought to get to the bottom of it to bounteous rewards for his Russian helpers, notably the Kremlin’s big boss, Vladimir Putin.

    In Helsinki in June 2018, Trump groveled before Putin, publicly accepting his smirking denials that he had nothing to do with Trump’s election while attacking and discounting the U.S. intelligence community.

    When did it all begin? Trump scholars suggest it started in the late 80s when Trump first visited the Soviet Union along with his then-wife Ivana, whose father was a former informer for the Soviet-overseen Czech intelligence service. But Trump made it all public on July 27, 2016 when, during his campaign for president, he asked on live TV for Russia’s help in getting Hillary Clinton’s “missing” emails.

    AS IT TURNED OUT, THEY WERE LISTENING. TRUMP WOULD LIKE TO BELIEVE WE WERE NOT.

    2. “Maybe I Have Natural Ability” (March 6, 2020)

    Although Trump had been warned by senior staff that the COVID epidemic would pose a major threat to the people of the United States as early as January 18 last year, and was in fact warned again at least ten times before March, the president chose to downplay that risk in a cynical calculus that it would help him politically.

    On March 6, 2020, he visited the Center for Disease Control to show he had everything “under control”. During that visit, he asserted that he had a special understanding of the science. He said: “I like this stuff. I really get it.”

    Trump referred to a “super-genius uncle” as the source of his incisive brainpower, a recurrence of his obsession with “good genes” and “good bloodlines”. He added: “People are really surprised I understand this stuff. Every one of these doctors said, ‘How do you know so much about this?’ Maybe I have a natural ability.” HE DIDN’T.

    2020 SAW THE WORST LOSS OF LIFE IN U.S. HISTORY. THE U.S. DEATH TOLL FROM THE DISEASE IS BY FAR THE HIGHEST IN THE WORLD.

    Current estimates suggest that perhaps as many as half a million Americans have died of the pandemic, and hundreds of thousands more are expected to die in the months ahead. And tens of millions of Americans have been devastated by the economic consequences of this largely Trump-made catastrophe.

    Estimates suggest that 50-90 percent of the deaths could have been prevented had Trump embraced a few common sense actions.

    1. The Coup (January 6, 2021)

    For months Trump, aided by GOP allies in Congress and the media, had perpetuated the lie that the November presidential elections had been “rigged”, “stolen” by Joe Biden and the Democrats. He and his supporters tried every avenue they could to reverse the results, from filing specious court cases to attempting to intimidate state election officials into invalidating results.

    Trump predicted that if the results were not reversed all Hell would break loose from his angry supporters. Then, he worked with those supporters to ensure exactly that happened.

    When fraudulent legal and legislative efforts at sedition failed, Trump turned to violent ones. On January 6th, he told the crowd he would never concede, and urged them to “fight”, to march to Capitol Hill to deliver their anger: “You’ll never take back our country with weakness. You have to show strength.”

    The result was the first major coup attempt in U.S. history. Five people died. Thousands were at risk. The seat of the U.S. legislature was ransacked. The president opined that his pre-riot incitement was “totally appropriate.”

    A week after the attempted insurrection, the U.S. House of Representatives impeached Trump for a second time. True to his standing as America’s Gaslighter-in-Chief, the outgoing president responded in a video that, “NO TRUE SUPPORTER OF MINE COULD EVER ENDORSE POLITICAL VIOLENCE.”

  • Clyde Duncan  On 01/15/2021 at 6:42 am

    Eddie in the UK wrote:

    All of man’s behaviour is controlled, and from the time he enters the world, all through his socialisation and education his mind has been controlled by various factions and factors.

    The moment we begin to identify with groups, ideas/ ideology and separate customs we become euphemistically “cult” followers.

    For the most part of our lives, we are followers because we want to belong to something bigger than ourselves, and to experience ourselves within the safety and security of that greater entity. And very often we make several excursions across several “cults”.

  • Clyde Duncan  On 01/15/2021 at 6:52 am

    Duane wrote:

    Trump may have used some techniques, but was also challenging the media mind control.

    Right now, their mind control is to say:

    “questioning elections = supporter of violence and insurrection”

    This will give an excuse for coverups and mass surveillance.

    Thinking people with certain views are considered ‘guilty until proven innocent’ and being ‘one of them’ like the kneejerk reaction to 911 resulted in many poor peaceful Muslims being vilified and denied some rights.

  • Clyde Duncan  On 01/15/2021 at 7:03 am

    Chee-A-Tow wrote:

    Jim Jones all over again. “Those who forget the past are condemned to repeat it.”

  • Clyde Duncan  On 01/15/2021 at 12:05 pm

    TRUMP SHOULD BE HOSPITALIZED

    Mental Health Experts Say It’s Time for an ‘Involuntary Psychiatric Hold’

    By Bandy X. Lee and Madeline Taylor | DC Report

    Before the nation could recover from Donald Trump’s violent insurrection at the Capitol, a QAnon propaganda video calling for a “great reawakening” in the U.S. ahead of the coming Jan. 20 inauguration was posted — seemingly inciting more violence before it was taken down. A string of social media platforms have banned Donald Trump and his hateful followers.

    But will this be sufficient to stop him from being a danger?

    No. The assault on an entire branch of government, both physically and metaphorically, now no longer allows us to dismiss Trump’s pathology as mere idiosyncrasies, just “Trump being Trump”, or his being little more than a “jerk”. He is exhibiting serious symptoms that pose a profound danger to society.

    Seeing him as “merely” a brutish and bad politician may seem to work for a while, but does not explain the intense emotional responses Donald Trump arouses from his followers.

    The assault on an entire branch of government now no longer allows us to dismiss Trump’s pathology as mere idiosyncrasies.

    REGRESSED CHILDREN

    The regressed, injured child in Donald Trump speaks unconsciously to the regressed, injured children in his followers. They likely have legitimate, ”archaic” grievances, which are grievances going back to the earliest stages of their infancy and early childhood, and now, in the present moment, those grievances are symbolized in the political situation. They feel wronged, as if something had been “stolen” from them, and their voice, their honor, and the respect they feel they deserve are at stake.

    Donald Trump frequently speaks in generalities, and his listeners fill in the blanks about what he means, how he feels, and what they are supposed to do for him. As president, he does not have to give direct orders for his followers to understand what they are supposed to do, including attack, kidnap, and possibly even kill. He can be a terrorist by means of proxy through his words. Charging his followers to “liberate” the economy, Trump sent them to extort governors in the same manner that Henry II once dispatched a group of knights after his target by merely suggesting:

    “Will no one rid me of this meddlesome priest?” DIRECT ORDERS ARE UNNECESSARY.

    PELOSI AS MOTHER FIGURE

    House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), on the other hand, could be experienced as the “bad mother”, the disinterested, unempathic mother who does not respond to their emotional needs and does not care about them, no matter her actual policies or sentiments. Vice President Mike Pence could symbolize the preoccupied, villainous figure who has failed to support the legitimacy of their surrogate self, which is Donald Trump and is now the target of their retribution.

    GERMAN CHANCELLOR ADOLF HITLER DID THE SAME THING, according to Polish-Swiss psychologist Alice Miller. He was horribly abused as a child, beaten daily by his father and unprotected by his mother. The German people were largely raised the same way, which gave him a ready audience that grabbed onto his permission for their rage and pain, as well as a self-righteous attitude.
    SEEKING DADDY APPROVAL

    Donald Trump’s insurrectionists similarly seek daddy’s approval and protection. The out-and-out fascist symbolism, physical brutality, and Nazi-type T-shirts saying, “Camp Auschwitz” and “6MWE” (which stands for “six million weren’t enough”) — as well as a gallows and other hangman’s ropes — show that they resonate with this type of psychological “activation”.

    How will Donald Trump’s followers respond in his absence from social media? As the separation brings them closer to the reality of his imperfections, and the deprivation causes them distress, there will likely respond angrily and defensively.

    He, too, will be fighting for his lifeline and, without proper containment, may find a way to reach his followers and to give them another message for violent upheaval. Inauguration Day, Jan. 20, could become another day of great danger.

    Our urgent recommendation is that demands for resignation, impeachment, and 25th Amendment hearings all happen simultaneously and forcefully while ensuring guardrails. If proper guardrails cannot be arranged, an involuntary psychiatric hold for immediate evaluation is highly recommended. He is likely to suffer acute deterioration of his mental state and impulse control over the next hours and days, and hospitalization will prevent him from directing another episode of group violence or abusing his other vast presidential powers.

    The safety of our nation and the world may be at stake.

  • Clyde Duncan  On 01/15/2021 at 12:45 pm

    Chee-A-Tow wrote:

    What I find interesting is that after the Jim Jones tragedy,the American media was lamenting how gullible the victims,who were mainly Black, could be to fall for the scam of a con artist.

    Now, we have millions of mainly White people falling victims to a bigger and deadlier con artist.

  • Clyde Duncan  On 01/15/2021 at 3:08 pm

    This Undemocratic Moment Must Be Met Head On: Schmidt

  • Ron Saywack  On 01/15/2021 at 3:32 pm

    To paraphrase the Nazi propagandist Joseph Goebbels’ central strategy: if you repeat a lie three or more times, eventually, people will believe it to be the truth.

    Trump is a master-disseminator of this sinister strategy. It is for this reason he was able to gaslight millions of people – in America and around the world – to believe that he won an election which he lost by a landslide – in excess of 7,000,000 votes.

    He’s clearly a psychologically disfigured cult-character, and a significant percentage of his followers have undoubtedly experienced similar physical and/or psychological abuse in childhood.

    But it is no excuse for their criminal behavior, for their violent invasion and desecration of the Capitol on January 6, 2021. There has to be criminal liability. Failure to do so and hold them accountable will only embolden them and make them better-prepared (and likely more successful) the next time they attempt another seditious, treasonous insurrection.

    Ron Saywack.

  • Jo  On 01/16/2021 at 7:26 pm

    Of all the ink spent on this man, I find Mr. Chee-A-Tow’s comments, suitably succinct. I will add a quote from a listener to CNN’s Smerconish’s program today.
    The gist of it is “if there are so many people still supportive of Trump, the trouble lies with them.”

    In my experience, along with the outlandish support of the “right to bear arms” when you’re not at war, is the problem of Americans needing someone who is “into” the next best thing that they absolutely need to adopt or follow for their lives. They are wedded to the idea of individualized capitalism which spawns every conceivable “dependency” trait to create gullible customers. i still cannot understand the number of ads for drugs for numerous perceived ailments that are pushed day and night on CNN. They love fads. Modesty is not their culture. Who should be surprised at arms toting, racist, ignorant, anti-Government cult followers in the United States? It’s in their DNA from the time of their ancestor’s arrival.

    So Trump is another fad allied with violent, gun-toting yahoos who need an “enemy” within and outside to feel real “manly” and real “proud”.

    Aaaah! Life in British Guiana so simple, so straightforward, so mentally and physically healthy. Thank G.d.

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