A path forward

And when you stop and think about it
You won’t believe it’s true
That all the love you’ve been giving
Has all been meant for you”– Justin Hayward

Webster’s dictionary defines narcissism as “excessive interest in or admiration of oneself and one’s physical appearance.” Some day, the president will be used as an example in basic psychology courses to describe narcissistic personality disorder. For those that haven’t taken psychology, the DSM-V is the Bible when it comes to diagnosing psychological disorders.

That same DSM-V says that in order for someone to qualify as having narcissistic personality disorder they must exhibit at least five of the following characteristics, “A grandiose sense of self-importance. A preoccupation with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love. A belief that he or she is special and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people or institutions. A need for excessive admiration.

It is pretty safe to say that Donald Trump fits all of those markers on the nose. Of course, mental health professionals would warn you not to diagnose someone from afar. After all, if you read the DSM-V you will notice that numerous disorders share characteristics in common. So maybe, he is suffering from something else entirely.

The term sociopath has been bandied about as well. That is defined as “a person with a personality disorder manifesting itself in extreme antisocial attitudes and behavior and a lack of conscience.” Notice the similarities and the overlap. Someone that is a sociopath is likely to fit the criteria as someone that is narcissistic. The reverse can be true, but not necessarily.

What does this all mean at the end of the day? Well, for starters it means that things will be better when we don’t have a mentally ill person in the White House. There can be no denying that there is something going on with Trump whether you want to attach a label to it or not. Those that defend him are either so invested in sticking it to liberals that they don’t care or they exhibit some of the same tendencies themselves.

I have described a number of issues in this space over the past few months. I don’t have the answers to all of these problems. If I did I wouldn’t be where I’m at. I’d be in Washington, Austin, or another capital solving these problems. What I do know is that problems need serious people to solve them. It requires experts, but more importantly it requires people committed to solving them.

The incoming administration already has two key points in their favor. First, Joe Biden is committed to solving problems. Sure, you could claim that he has been ineffective in over 40 years in government. Maybe that is because he doesn’t have the ideas necessary to make a difference. Maybe that’s because he doesn’t have the cache needed to convince enough people to implement his ideas. Maybe it’s because his ideas are the wrong ideas. Anything is possible. No one that knows him would say he doesn’t care.

The second thing he has going for him is that he is willing to put smart people in charge of departments that they are qualified to run. That’s such an easy sounding thing and it is so unique for the past four years. Competence is something we often take for granted. It’s also something we forget about when we look at battles in Congress over legislation.

The day to day mechanics of government are performed by bureaucrats and middle managers. They are performed by faceless people you’ve never heard of. Some people have heard of Betsy DeVoss for instance, but who has she hired under her in the Department of Education? Are they at all qualified to address the issue of returning to face to face instruction in the middle of a raging pandemic? Can they adequately address the issues related to virtual instruction? Do they have any ideas as to how we can keep teachers and students safe, adequately educate them, and allow parents to continue working outside the home if necessary?

That’s just one aspect of government. It’s one cabinet level position. Multiply that out and you see the overwhelming job of governing in front of us. Simply having people that know what they’re doing and care about getting it right is more than half of the battle. Having someone that doesn’t know what they are doing or doesn’t care is disastrous.

I get having people that are concerned with how old Biden is. Maybe they are concerned with his politics. Some might think he is too liberal. Some might think he isn’t liberal enough. Others think he is a Trojan Horse for Kamala Harris and the progressive wing of the Democratic party. Those things are all valid to a point. Yet, the choice came down to that or someone that is literally only in it for himself and only appointed cronies or sycophants instead of qualified people. The next four years looks brighter already.

Author: sbarzilla

I have written three books about baseball including The Hall of Fame Index. I also write for thefantatasyfix.com. You can follow me on twitter @sbarzilla.

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