Obama's Mental Health: A Checklist

If anyone had doubts about the mental health of the president and some of the other more visible people within the Obama administration, there can be doubts no longer. In the past few days Yemen has further erupted into explosive chaos and the long-known but finally admitted facts of Bowe Bergdahl's desertion were announced.  But his spokespersons, Josh Earnest, Marie Harf, and Jen Psaki, with blank, straight faces, still doggedly maintain that that Yemen is a "counterterrorism success" and that turning over five Taliban terrorists of the Taliban's choosing in exchange for Bergdahl was a wise and wonderful plan. 

Like a schoolyard bully, the president continues to find treacherous ways to punish Bibi Netanyahu and Israel in increasingly vicious ways. He has leaked details of Israel's nuclear program, threatened to circumvent Congress on the Iran deal by going to the UN, and threatened to withhold from Israel needed supplies for its self-defense. Denis McDonough spoke at J-Street and called for, "an end to the occupation," a wholly inaccurate term for Israel's existence and present boundaries. Jews around the world have not known such peril since the 1930s.

Many people have written about the president's narcissism. Some have suggested that he may be a sociopath. There is a checklist, developed by Dr. Robert D. Hare in the 1970s and used around the world to diagnose psychopathy. Dr. Hare would likely admit that it is not perfect but it is widely used in psychiatric settings and prisons to determine if an inmate is safe for release.  It may be useful in assessing our president and the people with whom he has surrounded himself.

"Dr. Hare’s test is simple: a list of 20 criteria, each given a score of 0 (if it doesn’t apply to the person), 1 (if it partially applies) or 2 (if it fully applies). The list in full is: glibness and superficial charm, grandiose sense of self-worth, pathological lying, cunning/manipulative, lack of remorse, emotional shallowness, callousness and lack of empathy, unwillingness to accept responsibility for actions, a tendency to boredom, a parasitic lifestyle, a lack of realistic long-term goals, impulsivity, irresponsibility, lack of behavioural control, behavioural problems in early life, juvenile delinquency, criminal versatility, a history of “revocation of conditional release” (ie. broken parole), multiple marriages, and promiscuous sexual behaviour. A pure, prototypical psychopath would score 40. A score of 30 or more qualifies for a diagnosis of psychopathy." "Psychopaths:  How to Spot One" Tom Chivers, Telegraph, April 6, 2014)  

Here is Dr. Hare's official checklist:  


Mr. Obama, as well as a number of people is his orbit (David Axelrod, Rahm Emanuel, Valerie Jarrrett, John Kerry, Michelle Obama), would easily score a 2 on each of the four traits listed in Factor 1. For obvious reasons, psychopaths find their ways to the top and once there wreak havoc. In Factor 2, Mr. Obama and his wife would certainly score a 2 on "parasitic lifestyle," and the president does suffer from a "lack of realistic long-term goals". (Too many examples to list but Iran is and will always be an enemy!) He may score a 1 or 2 on "Impulsivity" when one considers his many off the cuff remarks that have so often created problems ("57 states," "bitter clingers," "tell Vlad I'll have more flexibility after my reelection," etc.  There are numerous websites devoted to "Obamisms," his impulsive gaffes spoken when he goes off teleprompter.)

In Facet 2, he would score a 2 on each of the four items. The items in Facet 4 are not so obviously known except from what he wrote in his own autobiographies in which he admitted having used marijuana and cocaine and to being a slacker in high school. His academic records have never been released to the public. If they were exemplary, they would have been.  So it is safe to assume they were mediocre.

While few may be psychiatrists, the American people have had six years, far more than the three hours recommended, to observe President Obama. His score would easily be between 24 and 28. This is the man whom Americans twice elected to the presidency. And that is why the entire world is erupting in violence, confused and dangerous, more dangerous than at any time since the end of WWII. This man who lies pathologically and feels no empathy (again, too many examples to list but his reactions to the murders of Christopher Stevens and James Foley are indicative), has disdain for America and has set out to do the nation harm as surely as a psychopathic murderer sets out to kill an innocent human being. And he does it all without breaking a sweat or feeling an iota of responsibility or guilt.

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