When he visited Alaska to write his Vanity Fair hit piece on Sarah Palin, former New York Times reporter Todd Purdum found, so he claimed, “several” Alaskans who had consulted the definition of “narcissistic personality disorder” in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders – “a pervasive pattern of grandiosity (in fantasy or behavior), need for admiration and lack of empathy.” Purdum reported that these baked Alaskans thought the definition fit Sarah Palin.
Jack Kelly doubts Purdum’s tale of Alaskans wielding the DSM, but he has been thinking about the question of narcissism. He notes that a man who wrote two autobiographies before he was 45 is no piker when it comes to extravagant self-regard. Kelly adds that if Barack Obama is a narcissist, it would explain his notion that an iPod loaded with his speeches is an appropriate gift for the Queen of England (as well as Obama’s frequent self-references in those speeches).
Charles Krauthammer is a former psychiatrist who first noted Obama’s elevated opinion of himself in “Who does he think he is?” More recently, Krauthammer observed that Obama does not see himself as divine, but rather as merely “messianic, or, at worst, apostolic.” In the video below, Krauthammer asks: “Does the narcissism of this man know no bounds?” It’s a good question.
Obama’s grandiosity first struck me in his treatment of the issues related to Jeremiah Wright last year during the campaign. When Obama finally disavowed Wright, he explained: “[A]t a certain point, if what somebody says contradicts what you believe so fundamentally, and then he questions whether or not you believe it in front of the National Press Club, then that’s enough. That’s — that’s a show of disrespect to me.” In Obama’s world, Jeremiah Wright crossed the line when he showed disprect to Barack Obama. I thought that the adolescent grandiosity and adolscent pettiness of Obama’s remarks were the most shocking revelation of the episode.
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