The news is out: [Trump is the poster child and the Superspreader-in-Chief for a deeper illness in America. It afflicts men and takes the form of patriarchy and toxic masculinity—a system in which (mostly white) men promiscuously wield their privilege and power to control others.
To counteract his own feelings of insecurity and inadequacy, Trump’s primary defense has long been the grandiose insistence that “Only I can fix it.” It’s a zero-sum game. If he doesn’t “win” in every contest, real or imagined, then he sees himself as a loser. If he isn’t in total control, he feels weak and humiliated. If he isn’t dominating, he is succumbing.
Trump’s lack of empathy and absence of conscience have long given him the license to invent his own rules, define his own reality, defy norms, and break multiple laws. He lies without shame, and the more unacceptable he finds the facts, the more he dissembles. The volume of his lies has increased from five per day in the first year of his presidency, to 23 a day in the spring of this year, and almost certainly much higher during the past several months. In the 18 months that I spent with Trump to write The Art of the Deal, I never once saw him express affection or comfort to anyone, including his three young children. I saw no evidence that he ever had a single true friend.
Now, sensing defeat, Trump is doing what he’s always done under stress: doubling and tripling down on whatever fictional facts he wishes were true. But this time, his brazen tactics have produced exactly what they’re meant to defend against. He looks weaker, more vulnerable, and more out of control than at any time since his election. His poll numbers have plummeted.]
He who laughs last didn’t get it.