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Are all presidential candidates narcissists?

Written By | Mar 2, 2016

WASHINGTON, March 2, 2016 – The media is full of allegations that Donald Trump is a narcissist. What everyone is missing is that research suggests everyone who runs for the highest office must be narcissistic just to believe they are qualified to gear and steer the mightiest nation on the planet.

Apparently, Trump is the only candidate who verbalizes his level of narcissism.

The next question is whether in this particular case, narcissism is a bad thing.

A study published in 2013 in the journal ‘Personality and Individual Differences’ titled ‘Do Narcissists care?’ by Kaileigh  Byrne and Darrell Worthy at Texas A&M found that narcissists make better decisions than others, particularly in situations where deception and/or misleading information is prominent.

In politics, misinformation and deception are a daily exercise of the rules of the game.

The study suggests narcissists feel a strong need to perform better than others, and self-expectations for desirable outcomes are deeply imbued in the personality of narcissistic thinking.

The feeling of “I think I am great, so I must be great, act great and do great things” raises levels of confidence and promotes complete and detailed examination of the issue(s) before them as they seek means to publicize their abilities to demonstrate their ability to come to favorable resolutions and outcomes.

Never-mind the fact the same study shows narcissists are unaware of how disliked they are by the average person.

This and others studies show all 42 Presidents have or had similar narcissistic ego personality traits, with some president’s egos more pronounced than others.

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There are downsides to narcissism. One fatal flaw is thinking one is so superior they can do better than anyone else in a chosen area. A major obstacle is inflexibility, defined by sticking to decisions which are not in the best interest of the nation and disallowing for change when faced with facts to the contrary.

Perhaps it is this aspect of narcissism which keeps Marco Rubio running when it’s clear he has the proverbial ice cubes chance. His ultra-ego combined with his thinking that he is too far invested and the love of his own voice is what prevents him from admitting facts to the contrary.

Once he stops, he will suffer a narcissists worst nightmare; He will no longer be the center of attention, the star of his own little world, and may be putting off his own self-admission that he is not universally liked and trusted by the masses.

A classic case of narcissist thinking, Rubio believes he is best for the job and has misjudged how disliked he is by voters.

Many people are concerned that Donald Trump has never had to answer to anyone and may not take to dealing with Congress. Others point out congress and the senate will temper Trump’s bombastic remarks while simultaneously hold out that Trump’s belief in his ability to “Make America Great Again’ will be just the ticket Americans need to feel great again.

Keeping overconfidence in check will be the responsibility of the House and the Senate.

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To support this thinking, a study titled “The Double-Edged Sword of Grandiose Narcissism: Implications for Successful and Unsuccessful Leadership Among U.S. Presidents” in 2013 at Emory University and the Foundation for the Study of Personality History in Houston, Texas, indicates when a particular president scored higher on narcissism, he made decisions which created a greater national and international good.

The bottom line is if no one felt they were ‘great’ enough to hold the highest office, who would?

History shows the USA needs it’s narcissists to move us forward into a better future.

They can do it-just ask ’em.

Paul Mountjoy is a Virginia based psychotherapist and Publisher of the Northern Neck Free Press in Northern Neck, Virginia

Paul Mountjoy

Paul Mountjoy is a Virginia based psychotherapist and writer.