Appearing on MSNBC’s “AM Joy” on Sunday morning, retired Harvard clinical psychiatrist Dr. Lance Dodes diagnosed Donald Trump as having a “fundamental psychological problem” that has led him to seek approval from autocratic leaders like Russia’s Vladimir Putin.
Speaking with host Joy Reid, Dodes got right to the point while admitting that he has not sat down and questioned the the president.
“Donald Trump does have a fundamental psychological problem,” he bluntly stated. “He needs to be loved all the time, he needs to have power over everyone all the time. Once you get that idea down, the rest of his behavior and his speech makes sense.”
“He also doesn’t have any respect for the truth or for honesty. They don’t mean anything to him because he can’t care about them,” he added. “His focus, again, is always on himself and to be — to care about being honest to people rather than lying to them means you’d have to care about your effect on them.”
“He never expresses regret, he does terrible things to people, the children who are being detained in cages are a good example,” he continued. “If you think about it psychologically, this is what some of us once called a soul murder. That’s what he’s doing to these children. His ability to do that fits perfectly with this kind of very deep sickness where other people don’t matter and he can hurt them to whatever extent he wants.”
As to his relationship with Putin and North Korea’s Kim Jong-un, Dodes had another theory.
“He’s an extremely successful sociopath, that’s why he’s successful,” he suggested. “He loves them if they’re useful to him if they add to his power. That’s what happened with the North Korean leader. As long as he’s useful to him, he loves him and as soon as he would disagree with him, he would turn on him.”
“Your point on playing up to Putin is a good one because of the fundamental insecurity he also attaches himself to people who he sees as powerful,” he explained. “So he wants to be one with them, but only for that reason, only to increase his own power. If they were to disagree with him, he would hate them.”