nuclear-news

The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry Fukushima Chernobyl Mayak Three Mile Island Atomic Testing Radiation Isotope

The cruel and lonely death of an American nuclear weapons scientist

  The lost tale of a nuclear scientist’s death in a secret San Francisco hospital room, Katie Dowd, SFGATE, Oct. 23, 2020 Before San Francisco became a metropolis, there was the Presidio. Since its creation as a military base in 1776, it has stood alone in a windswept corner, gathering legends.It has seen executions, tragic accidents and countless hospital patients.

And if you’re a believer that violent ends produce restless spirits, the Presidio is full up with phantoms as a result.
The most haunted place is said to be Letterman Army Hospital, once the base’s largest medical facility

In looking for Presidio ghost stories, though, we stumbled across a far stranger tale than any haunting: the real-life demise of a nuclear scientist — a chapter of the Cold War, as far as we can tell, untold since 1953.

Twitchell was a genius. Born in Minnesota in 1917, he got his undergraduate degree from Rollins College in Florida and a masters in chemistry at UC Berkeley. At 23, he was promoted to project engineer in charge of the equipment department of the University of California radiation lab.
This was no ordinary lab. Among Twitchell’s colleagues were Glenn Seaborg, Ernest O. Lawrence and J. Robert Oppenheimer — all of whom would later contribute to the Manhattan Project — and together the team was working on the discovery of atomic particles. Once World War II broke out, their mission shifted. The lab’s work was now crucial to the creation of nuclear weapons for the U.S. military……….
 In 1952 then just 35 years old. That year, doctors diagnosed him with a malignant brain tumor and told him he likely did not have long to live.
As Twitchell and his wife Marie processed the terrible news, the U.S. government sprung into action. Although he likely would have wanted his palliative care to take place at his home at 2319 Glen Ave., in Berkeley, he was told that wouldn’t be possible. He needed to be moved as soon as possible to a secure location.

The brain tumor presented a particular problem for the Atomic Energy Commission: It had the potential to cause erratic behavior and uncontrolled verbal outbursts. They were fearful that as he lost control of his mental faculties, Twitchell would begin spilling nuclear secrets. He knew “as much about atomic energy as any one man,” an anonymous source in the commission would later tell the Oakland Tribune.

So they built a secret ward just for Twitchell. At the cost of $100,000 — nearly $1 million today — construction began at the Letterman Army Hospital in San Francisco’s Presidio for the unusual patient. Once finished, all doctors and nurses who might interact with Twitchell were given rigorous screenings for any national security issues. In the end, only one male nurse was trusted to primarily care for Twitchell. A guard stood watch outside the room at all times.

Unbeknownst to the other military patients at the hospital, a civilian lay dying in his own wing. “He was the hospital’s hush-hush case,” the San Francisco Examiner reported.

On March 23, 1953, five months after his diagnosis, Twitchell died. Two days later, news broke nationally. “A macabre tale of the atomic age was revealed yesterday,” the Examiner proclaimed. The Atomic Energy Commission was forced to admit Twitchell’s room wasn’t the only one they’d covertly constructed. Around the nation, there were similar isolation wards for individuals dealing in nuclear secrets.

An anonymous source told the Tribune this was standard protocol to keep scientists from blabbing while “unbalanced, anesthetized or under the influence of dentists’ ‘laughing gas.'” Although expensive, it was the only way to maintain national security.

But all this drama meant little to the Twitchells, who were left to bury their loved one…… https://www.sfgate.com/sfhistory/article/letterman-army-hospital-presidio-ghost-uc-berkeley-15668131.php

October 24, 2020 Posted by | health, psychology and culture, Religion and ethics, USA | Leave a comment

Trump’s psychopathology a threat to US democracy and to global stability.

October 12, 2020 Posted by | election USA 2020, Trump - personality | Leave a comment

Donald Trump’s extraordinary ignorance on which countries are nuclear powers

Bolton Says Trump Impeachment Inquiry Missed Other Troubling Actions, NYT, By Peter Baker, June 17, 2020

    • “…….Mr. Bolton’s volume is the first tell-all memoir by such a high-ranking official who participated in major foreign policy events and has a lifetime of conservative credentials. It is a withering portrait of a president ignorant of even basic facts about the world, susceptible to transparent flattery by authoritarian leaders manipulating him and prone to false statements, foul-mouthed eruptions and snap decisions that aides try to manage or reverse.

Mr. Trump did not seem to know, for example, that Britain is a nuclear power and asked if Finland is part of Russia, Mr. Bolton writes. He came closer to withdrawing the United States from NATO than previously known. Even top advisers who position themselves as unswervingly loyal mock him behind his back. During Mr. Trump’s 2018 meeting with North Korea’s leader, according to the book, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo slipped Mr. Bolton a note disparaging the president, saying, “He is so full of shit”

A month later, Mr. Bolton writes, Mr. Pompeo dismissed the president’s North Korea diplomacy, declaring that there was “zero probability of success.”

Intelligence briefings with the president were a waste of time “since much of the time was spent listening to Trump, rather than Trump listening to the briefers.” Mr. Trump likes pitting staff members against one another, at one point telling Mr. Bolton that former Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson had once referred to Nikki R. Haley, then the ambassador to the United Nations, by a sexist obscenity — an assertion Mr. Bolton seemed to doubt but found telling that the president would make it.

Mr. Trump said so many things that were wrong or false that Mr. Bolton in the book regularly includes phrases like “(the opposite of the truth)” following some quote from the president. And Mr. Trump in this telling has no overarching philosophy of governance or foreign policy but rather a series of gut-driven instincts that sometimes mirrored Mr. Bolton’s but other times were, in his view, dangerous and reckless……..” https://www.nytimes.com/2020/06/17/us/politics/bolton-book-trump-impeached.html

June 18, 2020 Posted by | Trump - personality, USA | Leave a comment

If You Like Covid-19, You’ll Love Nuclear War

Might this unsteady and unseemly American president soon become subject to still more serious forms of personal dissemblance and/or psychological debility? Leaving aside Trump’s largely unprecedented and breathtaking venality,[5] his open indifference to history and above all his continuing malfeasance and shameless dishonesty, should he still be allowed to decide whether we Americans should live or die?
If You Like Covid-19, You’ll Love Nuclear War  Prof. Louis René Beres, Modern Diplomacy  May 11, 2020    Even now, after some many staggering and irreversible leadership mistakes on Corona virus – grievous errors that could eventually cost the lives of very many Americans – President Donald J. Trump continues to hold undiminished US nuclear weapons authority.
Though a great many American voices will respond angrily to any conjunction of these two discrete threats as manipulative or unfair, such responses would still ignore a core commonality. Incontestable and irremediable, this stubbornly shared connection on disease and war concerns Mr. Trump’s indifference to approaching complex problems analytically.

It also reveals his incapacity to feel even a scintilla of human empathy for other human beings.

What does all this really mean? In what specific policy directions should we Americans now be propelled? Continue reading

May 12, 2020 Posted by | politics, Trump - personality, USA | 1 Comment

Trump repeatedly reverses his decisions – but if he pressed the nuclear button, there’s no reversing

The Coronavirus Teaches Us Not to Let Trump Press the Nuclear Button  BY TOM Z. COLLINA, DEFENSE ONE, POLICY DIRECTOR, PLOUGHSHARES FUND  1 Apr 20, Some of the president’s poor decisions on COVID-19, like proposing to reopen the nation by Easter, have been reversed. But a presidential decision to start nuclear war cannot be.

President Trump has swung from calling the coronavirus pandemic “totally under control” to a “national emergency” and back. Trump’s latest idea that the nation could be “opened up and just raring to go by Easter” did not stand up to scrutiny. Amazingly, we are months into this crisis and the president is still struggling to get it right.

But what if the president needs to get a decision right the very first time, no do-overs? And what if the wrong decision could lead to a disaster even worse than COVID-19?

Chillingly, that is where we find ourselves on another underappreciated but even more catastrophic threat: —nuclear war. Instead of a relatively slow-moving pandemic, this crisis could have involved strategic warning of a massive Russian nuclear attack. The president would have not weeks but just minutes to decide if the attack was real and, if so, whether to launch U.S. nuclear weapons before the attack arrives. If he decides to launch, there is no going back. No mulligans.

What would the president do? Judging by the coronavirus experience, Trump would likely be uninformed about the specifics of the threat and so would fall back on his gut instincts, assume he knows best, and proceed with dangerous over-confidence. But unlike the current crisis, he would only have time to consult with a few advisors, under intense time pressure, and only if he chooses to. The president has the sole authority to order the launch of U.S. nuclear weapons with no oversight from Congress, the Secretary of Defense, or anyone else …….

It is a deeply troubling reality that if early warning systems show a massive nuclear attack on the way, the president might decide to launch an immediate retaliation and has the absolute authority to do so. This would be a catastrophically bad decision for a number of important reasons, none of which may be obvious to an uninformed president.

First and foremost, the president might not know that the attack is probably a false alarm. There have been multiple false alarms like this in the United States and Russia, and the rise of sophisticated cyberattacks make this danger even worse…..

We need to limit the president’s unchecked and unnecessary authority to launch. Trump’s reckless mistakes on COVID-19 are a call to action: we cannot allow the president to make a unilateral decision to start nuclear war.https://www.defenseone.com/ideas/2020/04/coronavirus-teaches-us-not-let-trump-press-nuclear-button/164280/

April 2, 2020 Posted by | Trump - personality, USA | Leave a comment

Trump doesn’t ‘get it’ -climate change as the next great engine for the next pandemic

With the Coronavirus, It’s Again Trump vs. Mother Nature, The president’s failure to understand his limits is very costly. NYT, By Thomas L. Friedman, March 31, 2020

  • Today’s news quiz: What do these data points have in common?Jan. 22: President Trump is asked by CNBC: “Are there worries about a pandemic at this point?” Trump answers: “No. Not at all. And we’re, we have it totally under control. It’s one person coming in from China. … It’s — going to be just fine.”

    Jan. 31: Moving to counter the spreading coronavirus outbreak, Trump bars entry by most foreign nationals who had recently visited China…….

Nov. 26, 2018: CNN reports that Trump “dismissed a study produced by his own administration … and more than 300 leading climate scientists, warning of the potentially catastrophic impact of climate change.” Asked why, Trump told reporters, “I don’t believe it.” Asked if he read it, Trump said, “some.”

March 30, 2020: This newspaper reports that Trump completed plans to scrap Obama-era automobile fuel efficiency standards that limited climate-warming tailpipe pollution — a move that will “allow cars on

American roads to emit nearly a billion tons more carbon dioxide over the lifetime of the vehicles.”

What’s the common theme? We have a president who is enamored with markets but ignorant of Mother Nature, and we have paid a steep, steep price for that — and will pay an even bigger price when it comes to climate change, if Trump remains in charge……..

 there is one huge difference between the coronavirus and climate change: Climate change doesn’t “peak” — and then flatten out and then maybe dissipate or be permanently prevented by vaccine — so normal life resumes.

No, when the Greenland and Antarctic ice melts, it’s gone, and we humans will have to contend with the implications of sea level rise, mass movements of populations and various kinds of extreme weather — wetter wets, hotter hots and drier dries — forever.

There is no herd immunity to climate change. There are only endless impacts on the herd.

Thinking about climate change, even in the middle of this pandemic, is actually useful in a number of ways. For starters, they follow similar natural laws and have common mitigation strategies………

Finally, epidemiologists will tell you that climate change may well be the next great engine for the next pandemic — only this virus could easily be carried by mosquitoes, which, because of warmer temperatures in the global north, are able to migrate up from places they’ve never migrated from before.

For all these reasons, as we invest in infrastructure to stimulate our economy out of this corona crisis, we should be doing it to make our society more resilient against both pandemics and climate change. ……

Now that we have tasted Mother Nature’s wrath in the form of both Covid-19 and climate change, let’s get her on our side. She’s as happy to help as to destroy. Let’s use chemistry, biology and physics, not to mention sun and wind, to create the vaccines and power systems that immunize us from viruses and weather extremes — and not double down on bad habits that will only make us sick again. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/31/opinion/covid-trump-climate-change.html

April 2, 2020 Posted by | climate change, Trump - personality, USA | Leave a comment

As all their “selling points” fail, the nuclear lobby jumps on the climate change bandwagon

Nuclear Energy Institute Seizes on Climate Momentum to Push for Policy Boost

“The answer to the climate crisis won’t be as simple as replacing carbon with renewables and batteries,” according to NEI’s president and CEO. Greentech Media

Korsnick argued that nuclear’s cultural capital is on the rise, helped along by concerns about climate change and calls for 100 percent clean energy, but she suggested the industry needs better federal and state policy to grow.

…..   Energy Secretary Rick Perry announced $3.7 billion in additional loan support for the expansion of the Vogtle nuclear plant in Georgia. …..

Vogtle is a polarizing but important point of focus for the nuclear industry’s future. The Georgia expansion is the only large-scale nuclear project underway in the nation — another, V.C. Summer in South Carolina, was canceled in 2017 — and the first to be built in the U.S. in decades. It’s also billions of dollars over budget and significantly behind schedule, in part because key contractor Westinghouse announced Chapter 11 bankruptcy during construction.

…….  Korsnick said more states should follow Connecticut, New JerseyNew York and Illinois in allowing nuclear plants to compete as carbon-free sources or receive credits. Efforts to advance similar policies failed in Minnesota and are currently underway in Ohio and Pennsylvania.

Though environmental groups have mixed views on nuclear, groups in both Ohio and Pennsylvania have spoken out against the support packages.

But Korsnick said a boost in conversations around climate action, the Green New Deal and state-level clean energy goals is bringing more positive attention to the technology.

“It’s this realization that 100 percent renewables — it’s not going to happen,” she said.

Not everyone agrees. On Monday, Puerto Rico committed to 100 percent renewables, joining Hawaii and Washington, D.C. Illinois is considering a similar measure. …. https://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/nei-climate-momentum-boost-nuclear#gs.35vnl9

March 27, 2019 Posted by | climate change, psychology and culture, USA | Leave a comment

Future of Bradwell nuclear project in doubt – Chinese company might withdraw

BANNG 22nd Oct 2018 ,  BANNG has long maintained that there is no need for a new nuclear power
station at Bradwell. The costs, in terms of the long-lasting, physical
damage to the tranquil and vulnerable Blackwater estuary, of the finances,
of the potential for terrorist attacks and of the uncertainties around
investment by a potentially hostile state, are too high.
Nuclear power is an old-fashioned technology and given the continuing success and decreases
in the costs of renewables and storage, there will be no need for it by the
time Bradwell B could be in operation.
In its partnership with EDF, CGN, a Chinese state-owned nuclear company, is the majority two-thirds stakeholder
in the Bradwell B project. However, it seems now that CGN is wavering. In
the Financial Times of 18 September it was reported that CGN ‘has
admitted that political sensitivities could prompt it to give up the chance
to operate a new atomic power plant in the UK’.
The Chinese withdrawal, should it come, would appear to reflect widespread concerns about the
security issues surrounding Chinese investment into a highly sensitive part
of the UK’s national infrastructure. In the Financial Times, Zheng
Dongshan, Chief Executive of CGN’s UK subsidiary, is reported as
acknowledging that it would take time for CGN ‘to show the public, the
government they can trust us’. Andy Blowers, Chair of BANNG, said: ‘The
project may be doomed anyway as the Bradwell B site is totally unsuitable
and is opposed by communities all around the Blackwater estuary.’
https://www.banng.info/news/is-bradwell-b-going-down-the-drain/

October 25, 2018 Posted by | China, psychology and culture, UK | Leave a comment

Japan’s 2020 Olympic Games a public relations cover-up of the Fukushima fiasco, for the nuclear industry

Pay no attention to that radiological disaster behind the curtains https://globalhibakusha.com/page-2/?permalink=hiding-fukushima-behind-the-curtains-in-official-japan  by Bo, 

The government of Japan is clearly intending that the 2020 Olympics will function as a public relations win in which the image of Japan, and especially of Northern Japan and Fukushima are cleansed of images of radiological contamination. Even as the Fukushima Daiichi site itself, and the traces where the plumes of its explosions deposited fallout throughout the area remain un-remediated, the public perceptions will be remediated. This is typical of the behavior of governments in the developed world that suffer radiological disasters. The disasters themselves are so difficult to clean up, and take decades to even begin the clean up, that money is allocated for extensive public relations efforts. These become tasks that CAN be completed and CAN be considered successful. They function both to advance the public image agenda of the governments, and also deliver a sense of agency when the overall tone of nuclear disaster remediation is one of lacking effective agency.

Towards that end, the Japanese government is planning to integrate Fukushima sites and perceptions into the upcoming Olympics media fest. The journey of the Olympic torch through every prefecture of Japan will begin in Fukushima, a symbolic rebirth intended to facilitate the repopulating of the local communities that were evacuated, many of which have had few returnees since the government has declared them “safe” and cut public funds to those forcibly evacuated.

The government is also planning to hold multiple Olympic events in Fukushima prefecture including baseball and softball events. “Tokyo 2020 is a showcase for the recovery and reconstruction of Japan from the disaster of March 2011, so in many ways we would like to give encouragement to the people, especially in the affected area,”said Tokyo 2020 president Yoshiro Mori last March.

This active rebranding of Fukushima as safe involves removing physical reminders of ongoing risk. The central government has recently announced that it will be removing 80% of public radiation monitors from the region. An argument can be made that the presence of these monitors is theatrical in that they only measure external gamma radiation levels, which are not the primary risk to residents (this comes from internalizing radioactive particles that blanketed the region in the fallout of the plumes of the explosions of March 2011), and that positioning these gamma detectors in midair produces low readings since the particles are primarily on the ground. However, they are a tangible, embodied reminder that risk remains.

While there is a clearly an active campaign to rehabilitate the image of the region leading up to the 2020 Olympics, an effort that will no doubt intensify as the event draws near, there is also pushback and resistance in the local and national communities. A recent sculpture unveiled at the JR train station in prefectural capital Fukushima City (about 80km from the Daiichi nuclear site) has been stirring up controversy.  A Guardian article explained:

“The statue, by Kenji Yanobe, depicts a child dressed in a yellow Hazmat-style suit, with a helmet in one hand and an artistic representation of the sun in the other.
Yanobe said his Sun Child, which was installed by the municipal government after appearing at art exhibitions in Japan and overseas, was intended to express his desire for a nuclear-free world.
The artist said he did not mean to give the impression that local children needed to protect themselves from radiation more than seven years after the Fukushima Daiichi plant became the scene of the world’s worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl.
He pointed out that the child was not wearing the helmet and that a monitor on its chest showed radiation levels at ‘000’.”

While some, including the mayor of Fukushima City, have praised the statue for emphasizing a hopeful future for local children, others have criticized the statue for suggesting that there is any danger to local children.

Regardless of how one interprets the sculpture, it does confront people with the fact that things are far from normal in the region. This, in spite of the central government’s strong efforts to implore people not to pay any attention to what is happening behind the curtains it has been raising.

 

August 20, 2018 Posted by | Japan, psychology and culture, secrets,lies and civil liberties, spinbuster | Leave a comment

Minnesota Senate passes legislation that would change approval process for Xcel nuclear costs

 Legislation’s foes fear it would shift risk from shareholders to ratepayers , By Mike Hughlett Star Tribune, MAY 14, 2018 

May 16, 2018 Posted by | psychology and culture, USA | Leave a comment

Foreign policy run by macho males: it’s just so dangerous!

American Foreign Policy Has A Masculinity Problem, Huffington Post, Lauren Sandler, Columnist  15 Mar 18 

March 19, 2018 Posted by | politics, psychology and culture, Trump - personality, USA | Leave a comment

Trump has made fear the dominant emotion of our times.

I wrote The Art of the Deal with Trump. He’s still a scared child, Guardian, 

“I alone can do it.” These five extraordinary words kept coming back to me as I reflected on Donald Trump’s first year as president of the US. He made this claim during his speech accepting the Republican nomination in July 2016. At the time, it struck me simply as a delusional expression of his grandiosity. Looking back, I also hear the plaintive wail of a desperate child who believes he is alone in the world with no one to care for him. “I alone can do it” is Trump’s survival response to: “I must do it all alone.”

There are two Trumps. The one he presents to the world is all bluster, bullying and certainty. The other, which I have long felt haunts his inner world, is the frightened child of a relentlessly critical and bullying father and a distant and disengaged mother who couldn’t or wouldn’t protect him.

Trump’s temperament and his habits have hardened with age. He was always cartoonish, but compared with the man for whom I wrote The Art of the Deal 30 years ago, he is significantly angrier today: more reactive, deceitful, distracted, vindictive, impulsive and, above all, self-absorbed – assuming the last is possible.

This is the narrative I’ve been advancing for the past 18 months. With the recent publication of Michael Wolff’s Fire and Fury, it turns out that even those closest to Trump recognise his utter lack of fitness to be president, even if they are too cowed and cowardly to do anything about it.

 Fear is the hidden through-line in Trump’s life – fear of weakness, of inadequacy, of failure, of criticism and of insignificance. He has spent his life trying to outrun these fears by “winning” – as he puts it – and by redefining reality whenever the facts don’t serve the narrative he seeks to create. It hasn’t worked, but not for lack of effort…….

Trump has made fear the dominant emotion of our times. This, I believe, is his primary impact on the body politic after a year in office……..

Trump skilfully exploited the fears of supporters who felt powerless and disenfranchised by presenting himself as their angry champion, even though the policies he has since pursued are likely to make their lives worse.

About the only thing Trump truly has in common with his base is that he feels every bit as aggrieved as they do, despite his endless privilege…….

If fear gets sufficiently intense, or persists for long enough, we eventually move into “freeze” – meaning numbness and submission. This is my own greatest fear. As Trump violates one norm after another day after day, the risk is that we lose our sense of outrage and our motivation to speak out.

The challenge we face is to resist our own fear without sacrificing our outrage. That requires widening our perspective beyond Trump’s, and beyond Trump himself. The future is ours to shape, not his. ……….

Trump himself has become the embodiment of the limits of traditional masculinity. “We raise boys,” writes the author Terrence Real, “to live in a world in which they are either winners or losers, grandiose or shame-filled, … perpetrators or victims. Society shows little mercy for men if they fail in the performance of their role. But the price of that performance is an inward sickness.”

Trump represents an extreme version of a sickness from which most men suffer, to some extent. The most powerful stand we can take in opposition to Trump’s values and behaviour is to pursue a higher purpose every day, seek more common ground amid our differences, and find better ways to take care of others and add value wherever we can. As he looks backward, we must look forward……… https://www.theguardian.com/global/commentisfree/2018/jan/18/fear-donald-trump-us-president-art-of-the-deal

 

January 20, 2018 Posted by | politics, Trump - personality | Leave a comment

What if White House officials really did have to physically stop President Donald Trump from starting a nuclear war?

Matt Lauer to John Brennan: Will Military Leaders ‘Lock’ Trump ‘in A Room’ to Stop Nuclear War? https://www.mediaite.com/tv/matt-lauer-to-john-brennan-will-military-leaders-lock-trump-in-a-room-to-stop-nuclear-war/, by Caleb Ecarma October 19th, 2017 

As talks of military confrontation between the US and North Korea continue to escalate, Today Show host Matt Lauer raised an incredible question: What if White House officials really did have to physically stop President Donald Trump from starting a nuclear war?

As ridiculous as the idea may seem, there have been reports circulating in which WH aides suggest that Chief of Staff John Kelly and Secretary of Defense James Mattis may have formulated a plot to physically apprehend Trump before he reaches the nuclear football.

These reports inspired Lauer to ask Brennan the following:

“I feel weird asking you this, but you’ve read the same stories I’ve read. You know the key players around the president in Mattis, Mcmaster and John Kelly. Stories are going around out there that if the president inches closer to some kind of a nuclear confrontation with North Korea, that those guys are going to do something. They’re going to lock him in a room. They’re going to tackle him. You’re smiling. But these are the stories that are out there. And they will prevent him from carrying out any action that would cause that. Is that all nonsense?”

Despite the preposterous, slapstick image that Lauer’s question conjures up — Kelly or Mattis leaping like an NFL safety at Trump while he’s mid-nuclear launch — the always professional Brennan calmly clarified that the president alone has “unilateral authority” on military action. The former CIA director said Mattis’ options for protest include trying to talk the president out of it or tendering his resignation — the possibility of tackling Trump was not a listed option, though.

When asked whether or not he would follow unethical orders from his authorities, Brennan said that in certain cases — such as a command to bring back waterboarding — he would choose getting fired over following directives.

As for the Mattis, Kelly, and H.R. McMaster, Brennan commended all of them, saying, “They’re patriots… They understand the gravity of this situation, and I don’t think Trump does.”

October 21, 2017 Posted by | politics, Trump - personality, USA | Leave a comment

Trump’s “Relation to Reality” is Dangerous to Us All

Here’s how Trump’s ‘malignant narcissism’ will end his presidency, according to psychiatrists — and it’s going to be wild  HTTPS://WWW.RAWSTORY.COM/2017/09/HERES-HOW-TRUMPS-MALIGNANT-NARCISSISM-WILL-END-HIS-PRESIDENCY-ACCORDING-TO-PSYCHIATRISTS-AND-ITS-GOING-TO-BE-WILD/ SARAH K. BURRIS, 12 SEP 2017 

Dr. Lance Dodes is one of 27 psychiatrists and mental health experts who came together to give an educated assessment of President Donald Trump for a new book. In an interview with Salon, Dodes explained the consensus among the professors is that “the evidence suggesting that Donald Trump may have serious mental health problems is overwhelming.”

 Psychiatrist Robert Jay Lifton on Duty to Warn: Trump’s “Relation to Reality” is Dangerous to Us All

No other medical practitioner is restricted by confidentiality the way psychiatrists are, but Trump is no one’s patient. Many trained in mental health can observe Trump and match his speech and behavior patterns to specific disorders. That’s as far as anyone can go without doing an actual in-person exam of Trump.

Dodes began with a diagnosis of “antisocial personality” and the qualities that people who have that exhibit. Comparing it to Trump, he thinks this is one of Trump’s problems.

“It is people who lie and cheat,” Dodes explained as part of the qualities Trump exhibits. “Everybody lies some of the time, but in this instance we mean people who lie as a way of being in the world, to manage relationships and also to manage your feelings about yourself. People who cheat and steal from others. People who lack empathy … the lack of empathy is a critical aspect of it. People who are narcissistic.”

He went on to say that Trump’s case of “malignant narcissism” is particularly acute because he also seems detached from reality when he is agitated. An example is Trump’s boasting of his crowd size being the largest in history, despite proof to the contrary.

“That is very troublesome because what it means is that he needs to believe it,” Dodes told Salon. “He is able to give up reality in exchange for his wished-for belief. Sometimes we call that a delusion.”

He said that in the past many have refrained from using the word “delusional” to describe Trump because it can be confused with people who think they’re the Queen of England or the second coming of Christ. However, “Trump has a fluid sense of reality, which is a sign of a very sick individual,” Dodes said.

Sociopathy is another sign of a mentally ill person. The intersection of cheating, lying and having an emotional disorder typically converge to sociopathy.

“It is not just bad behavior that people have to lie and cheat the way he does, it is an incapacity to treat other people as full human beings,” Dodes said. “That is why his focus is on humiliating others to aggrandize himself, as he did in the Republican primaries when he was debating and calling people names.”

Trump has done the same with women, LGBT people, immigrants, those with special needs and others. Part of being a human being is seeing the plight of others and feeling something. When Trump fails to see the harm in separating immigrants from children it shows his lack of empathy.

Trump manages to score supporters regardless and Dodes explained this is because many search for strong leaders while others are suspicious of them.

“As children, we all want to believe that our parents are good and strong and great and will protect us forever,” he told Salon. “So if you have someone who comes along say, ‘I am good and strong and great and I will protect you forever,’ a certain number of people will follow that person.” For many, Trump is the strong parent being attacked by media or Democrats and they want to protect him.

People trust that they’ll speak up for him, the problem, according to Dodes, is that Trump is a liar, so it’s “a one-sided bargain.”

“Trump is a very primitive man. He is also a man who has a fundamental, deep psychological defect,” he said. “It is expressed in his inability to empathize with others and his lack of genuine loyalty to anyone. You will notice that Trump wants everyone to be loyal to him, but he is loyal to nobody.”

Being a narcissist doesn’t make someone evil or dangerous, according to Dodes, but Trump’s other questionable qualities are what make it concerning and defines it as “malignant.”

As for how this all ends for Trump, Dodes has two possible scenarios for the presidency. First, if there’s a “Reichstag fire”-type event that Trump can use to attack his opposition, the country will rally around him. Dodes thinks it will be North Korea and he’ll end up dropping bombs on the country and the dominoes will begin to fall in Asia.

The second piece involves the Republican Party and the point at which they abandon Trump to preserve their own political careers. They’ll either invoke the 25th Amendment or impeach him. If that happens, Dodes thinks Trump will “cut bait” and leave a mess for someone else to clean up.

“Trump will resign and say, ‘I am still the best and the only savior, and these evil people and their evil media have forced me out,’” Dodes told Salon. “He will keep his constituency, he’ll leave with honor in his own mind and by the way, keep his businesses.”

 

October 18, 2017 Posted by | politics, Trump - personality, USA | Leave a comment

Fact checking Donald Trump’s statement on Sen Bob Corker – verdict FALSE

“Bob Corker gave us the Iran Deal.”

— Donald Trump on Sunday, October 8th, 2017 in a tweet

 
Is Sen. Bob Corker responsible for the Iran deal, as Donald Trump claims? POLITIFACT By John Kruzel President Donald Trump escalated a war of words with Sen. Bob Corker by blaming the Tennessee Republican for the Iran nuclear deal Trump has long derided……..

We decided to take a closer look at Corker’s role in the brokering the agreement.

Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act

Trump’s claim is contradicted by the fact Corker vocally opposed the deal that would eventually emerge from negotiations with Iran in July 2015, and urged Republican colleagues to oppose it, too.

The deal “leaves the United States vulnerable to a resurgent Iran wealthier and more able to work its will in the Middle East,” Corker wrote in an August 2015 opinion piece in the Washington Post. “Congress should reject this deal and send it back to the president.”

Corker himself voted against the deal, though Republicans ultimately lacked the votes to reject it.

When asked how Trump could say that Corker was responsible for the deal, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said a bill Corker sponsored paved the way for the Iran deal and gave it credibility.

“Sen. Corker worked with (Democratic House Leader) Nancy Pelosi and the Obama administration to pave the way for that legislation, and basically rolled out the red carpet for the Iran deal,” she said in an Oct. 10 press briefing, adding, “He not only allowed the deal to happen, he gave it credibility.”

The legislation Sanders was referring to is the Corker-sponsored Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act. After initial resistance from President Barack Obama, the bill passed with overwhelming majorities in both chambers, and was signed into law in May 2015.

Corker’s office described the law as enhancing Congress’ authority to review any nuclear agreement with Iran before allowing a president to lift congressionally-imposed sanctions.

So if Corker’s law aimed to give Congress more say over the agreement, what to make of the Trump administration’s assertion that it paved the way for the deal?

“This is astonishingly wrong,” said Richard Nephew, a senior research scholar on global energy policy at Columbia University, who previously served as the lead sanctions expert for the U.S. team negotiating with Iran during the administration of President Barack Obama. “The Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act gave Congress the most direct way of killing the deal, quickly and easily.”

Kelsey Davenport, the director for nonproliferation policy at the Arms Control Association, also said the Trump administration was way off the mark.

“It is ludicrous to argue that Senator Corker and Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act are responsible for delivering the nuclear deal with Iran,” she said. “If anything, (the law) nearly prevented the deal’s implementation and undermined the agreement.”……..

Our ruling

Trump said, “Bob Corker gave us the Iran Deal.”

Corker sponsored legislation to enhance Congress’ authority to review the Iran nuclear deal before allowing the president to lift congressionally-imposed sanctions. He also vocally opposed the deal, urged lawmakers to reject the agreement and voted against it.

We don’t see how this could reasonably be construed as Corker giving the United States the Iran deal. Trump’s claim doesn’t make logical sense.

We rate this False. http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2017/oct/12/donald-trump/sen-bob-corker-responsible-iran-deal-donald-trump-/

October 14, 2017 Posted by | politics, Trump - personality, USA | Leave a comment