Quote Of The Day

Life is a metaphor. Death is… well, guess we won’t know till we get there and by that time we will be so confused that all we will be able to manage is a blank stare.    -Me

Post#: 031-19 – Words: 1195 – Audio: N/A

Calling behavior for what it is.. and isn’t.

In the ongoing crisis of the Trump Presidency we have yet another demonstration of his sage and wise… ignorance.  The Senate had a hearing on urgent global threats with the intel chiefs of our nation.  There’s no question on the impeccable years of experience and intelligence savvy of these folks and their respective organizations.  Essentially they reported a world of threats far different than our Dear Leader is trying to sell to America.

(I encourage the reader to check out this report… HERE.)

Pretty much the chiefs shot down the President’s meanderings about his alleged successes regarding North Korea, ISIS, Iran, Russia, and Syria.  Then after watching the media broadcasting the contrarian views of the intel chiefs, thus making him look like the incompetent he is, the President lashed out by Tweet calling DNI chief Coats and the others as “passive and naïve” and that they should “go back to school”.  Obviously Trump knows better than them what’s a national threat.

Yesterday a media anchor brought out a psychological behavioral reference that I had forgotten from my own college studies years ago.  The anchor was explaining Trump’s behavior with the intel chiefs… a behavior he’s used often before… as being a classic example of the Dunning-Kruger effect.  Let me pull the definition off of Wiki rather than spin my own biased words…

“In the field of psychology, the Dunning–Kruger effect is a cognitive bias in which people of low ability have illusory superiority and mistakenly assess their cognitive ability as greater than it is. The cognitive bias of illusory superiority comes from the inability of low-ability people to recognize their lack of ability. Without the self-awareness of meta-cognition, low-ability people cannot objectively evaluate their competence or incompetence.”

Now, I call the reader’s attention to a segment on this blog in the top menu… under the heading “My Reasons”..  and click on “Why I Dislike This Guy As My President”, or click HERE.

I present Trump’s persona as being filled with any number of classic behavioral symptoms.. described by a number of psych professionals.  Terms like “narcissist personality disorder”, Maslow’s Hammer”, “Messiah Complex”, etc.  In fact, some 27 professional members of the psych community published a book in 2017 titled, The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump: 27 Psychiatrists and Mental Health Experts Assess a President.. and this book has been revised for 2019, The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump: 37 Psychiatrists and Mental Health Experts Assess a President.

My point is that Trump’s behavior pattern still shows through regardless of our propensity to be taking all this in as just another day in Trump World, moving from crisis to crisis.  We’ve become numb to his persona.  The more the media bangs away at his Presidential  incompetencies the more the media takes hits for reporting only the negative, regardless of the reality that all the news IS negative.. and embarrassing to Americans, save his base who seems to relish in the rest of the nation in political turmoil.

There is also another persona classification.  This one is generally applied in the workplace and doesn’t really fit as a psych behavioral dysfunction.  The Peter Principle.  Again, Wiki….

“The Peter principle is a concept in management developed by Laurence J. Peter, which observes that people in a hierarchy tend to rise to their “level of incompetence”. In other words, an employee is promoted based on their success in previous jobs until they reach a level at which they are no longer competent, as skills in one job do not necessarily translate to another. The concept was elucidated in the 1969 book The Peter Principle by Peter and Raymond Hull.”

As President, Trump has risen to his “level of incompetence”.  Whatever skill sets he has acquired in life, in this current job they are irrelevant, and damaging.  So what can we do about it?  Other than continuing to raise the warnings and scream at our elected officials to do something… we may be  forced  to use our vote when the time comes.  In the meantime, he gets to be an on-going clear and present danger to the safety of the country for another two years.

If you are thinking maybe we need more than 37 psych professionals (from the new book to be released in March of this year) consider the following as reported in the magazine, Psychology Today…

John Gartner, PhD, is the founder of Duty to Warn, an organization intent on warning our country that we are in dire trouble due to our president’s mental instability. More than 60,000 mental health professionals have signed John’s petition, which states:

“We, the undersigned mental health professionals, believe in our professional judgment that Donald Trump manifests a serious mental illness that renders him psychologically incapable of competently discharging the duties of President of the United States. And we respectfully request he be removed from office, according to article 4 of the 25th amendment to the Constitution, which states that the president will be replaced if he is ‘unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office.’”

So be it.. make it so.


Historical Antecedents  (from Wikipedia)

Although the Dunning–Kruger effect was formulated in 1999, the cognitive bias of illusory superiority has been known throughout history and identified by intellectuals. A sampling of their comments includes:

  • Confucius (551–479 BC), who said, “Real knowledge is to know the extent of one’s ignorance”
  • The philosopher Socrates (470–399 BC), who interpreted a prophecy from the Delphic oracle that he was wise despite feeling that he did not fully understand anything, as the wisdom of being aware that he knew nothing
  • Playwright William Shakespeare (1564–1616), who said, “The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool” (As You Like It, V. i.)
  • The poet Alexander Pope (1688–1744), who wrote in An Essay on Criticism, 1709: “A little learning is a dangerous thing”
  • Henry Fielding (1707–1754), who, in the novel The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling, wrote: “For men of true learning, and almost universal knowledge, always compassionate [pity] the ignorance of others; but fellows who excel in some little, low, contemptible art, are always certain to despise those who are unacquainted with that art.”
  • The naturalist Charles Darwin (1809–1882), who said, “Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge”
  • Philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche (1844–1900), who wrote in Human, All Too Human (aphorism 483), “The Enemies of Truth. — Convictions are more dangerous enemies of truth than lies.”
  • W. B. Yeats (1865–1939), who, in the poem The Second Coming, said: “The best lack all conviction, while the worst / Are full of passionate intensity.”
  • The philosopher and mathematician Bertrand Russell (1872–1970), who said, “One of the painful things about our time is that those who feel certainty are stupid, and those with any imagination and understanding are filled with doubt and indecision.”



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