Based on my experience working for a full-blown narcissist, I noted the following:
…he is essentially a full-tilt diva, with the rest of us either as bit, cameo players, or else the audience (or both). One day the script might be ‘hard-charging businessman’, the next ‘compassionate philanthropist’, followed by ‘competent manager’ and so on. Regardless, the show must go on. Ideally, his entire life is a fantasy, unmoored from reality. Anyone who challenges this fantasy causes extreme psychological distress.
…Just like the addict’s primary goal is to get that fix, the narcissist’s primary goal is to maintain the fantasy. They will construct elaborate mechanisms to deny unpleasant realities. Plainly put, they turn everyone around them into liars.
And Stanley Bing, in Crazy Bosses, described two traits of the narcissist boss:
•Capable of great generosity and random acts of kindness, because they make him feel good about himself and justify his egocentric worldview.
•Zero attention span, concentration of a small child.
Which brings us to this observation about our recent Syria missile strike (boldface mine):
That message—a vote for Clinton is a vote for World War III beginning in Syria—was pounded home by surrogates and by Trump’s social-media troll army.
Not even 100 days into his presidency, Trump has done exactly what he attacked Hillary Clinton for contemplating.
Some have described this reverse as “hypocritical.” This description is not accurate. A hypocrite says one thing while inwardly believing another. The situation with Donald Trump is much more alarming. On October 26, 2016, he surely meant what he said. It’s just that what he meant and said that day was no guide to what he would mean or say on October 27, 2016—much less April 6, 2017.
Voters and citizens can expect literally zero advance warning of what Donald Trump will do or won’t do. Campaign promises, solemn pledges—none are even slightly binding. If he can reverse himself on Syria, he can reverse himself on anything. If you feel betrayed by any of these reversals, you have no right to complain. As I wrote during the campaign:
When [Trump] issued a promise, he instantly contradicted it. If you chose to accept the promise anyway, you did so with abundant notice of its worthlessness. For all the times Trump said believe me and trust me in his salesman patter, he communicated constantly and in every medium that there was only thing you could believe and trust: If you voted for Donald Trump, you’d get Donald Trump, in all his Trumpery and Trumpiness.
The television networks that promoted Trump; the primary voters who elevated him; the politicians who eventually surrendered to him; the intellectuals who argued for him, and the donors who, however grudgingly, wrote checks to him—all of them knew, by the time they made their decisions, that Trump lied all the time, about everything.
This is exactly what narcissists do–my Narcissist Boss routinely believed things that were untrue, because the Boss needed them to be true; oddly, these beliefs absolved the Boss of all responsibility for failure.
Trump says whatever he needs to say to maintain his mental equilibrium (such as it is). The ‘little lies’ allow him to wiggle out of a bad situation, such as tough questioning or a bad moment in a debate. The ‘big lies’ allow him to maintain his fantasy, to rationalize away any cognitive dissonance.
Mind you, once Syria becomes frustrating or even just fails to celebrate his greatness, he will move on, blame others, and find a new shiny object.
If you think this ends well, you are playing yourself for a sucker.