by Jon Biddle
So this book isn’t what I thought. Now I know that I could address the political prowess of Trump, but I wont, I’m neither an American nor intelligent enough to understand the machinations of Trump’s presidency, however, from bitter experience as a child, I am acutely aware and versed in the behaviour of someone that is a narcissist. Trump obfuscates his lack of real leadership with lies, sleight of hand and a self grandiose narrative that you must edify him for without impunity. A constant need for affirmations provided by mainly the very people he would never associate with and here in lies the real skills of Donald Trump. As a consequence, his behaviour has become normalised by weaker people while more powerful people have placed him in positions of power. More a sad indictment of the politico-legal system that effects most developed countries.
In Trumps case, psychologist’s would call this being trapped in the inner child which is something that I can fully understand. And its well known clinically that Trump is a narcissist, but not any old run of the mill narcissist, a malignant one to boot, which has many facets to discuss. So when this book came out, I was excited – maybe that’s a wrong word, but intrigued to know the contents of the book.
And as I started, it wasn’t what I had expected.
Mary L. Trump is a clinical psychologist and experienced in dealing with the likes of her uncle but sadly, most of the book didn’t address Trump and his behaviour. The meat and potatoes came in the closing chapters of the book, if you want to Blinkist the book and speed read it, you’ll find everything you need to know I the prologue and the final two chapters. A side note – the prologue for anyone that has suffered through childhood at the hands of a narcism will give you goosebumps. It did me.
So, why is he a pathological liar? why weakness taught as the greatest sin of all? There were parts of the book that skirted around the subject of Trumps egocentric world, but the book came across to me as a bitter attack against the family because the death of her father and the way in which it was handled, and rightly so. The story Mary talks about is horrific. The grandchildren were effectively written out of the will when the patriarch of the family died, left most of the money to Donald, or did he?
There are aspects to the behaviour of Trumps father, a classic narcissist himself singled out Donald as the prime benefactor of his wealth. At the age of 21, getting the keys to the company’s fortune was probably not the best thing in the world where his father built everything without debt, avoided debto and then along came Donald. The one thing that Trump isn’t familiar with is, is boundaries. And by boundaries, I mean ethical boundaries. Nothing drives Trump more than profit. And while that is an erstwhile pursuit in the success of business. Lying, cheating, being an all round douche bag isn’t the right way to go. With all the things in life you can be, first, be kind is a fundamental character trait we all bestowed. People like Trump do get their just deserves, they run out of rope in which to hang themselves and one wonders when this is going to happen. While I know millions of people voted for Trump in the 2020 election, they didn’t necessarily vote republican, they voted for Trump and what he stands for, and from my side of the fence, as a narcissist survivor, this is a sad indictment to the people that voted for him. I think his failure to win the 2020 election maybe the nail in the coffin of Donald Trump. The stress the White House brings Trump something that he cant avoid. While in the boardroom of Trump tower, he can point fingers and behave in a way that people will submit and do as they’re told, but in public office, that’s not possible when you’re held to account for every decision you make. Even the ones your claim are not your decisions. Trump has never evidentially been able to solve any of his own personal and business problems so why would he be able to solve complex state, civic and political decisions that a president must be able to deliver? And maybe when we look back in the endless dissection of what he has achieved (which there have been some) and failed at (which also has been quite a lot,) we will see the true person, the spitefulness, the misogyny, the racism, the bigotry, the lack of fundamental education while in the driving seat of one of the most powerful countries on the planet we will discover how downright unfit he was to ever become president.
The achievements that Trump has made has ostensibly been built on sand, and as Clinton said in her post election defeat in 2016 said, ‘Donald will do just fine as president as long as there is nothing too catastrophic for him to cope with,’ and if covid-19 hadn’t come along, I think Trump would have won a second term at the White House – some small mercies there.
Like I said, I want to leave the politics out of this because this isn’t what the book is about, the book is about the provenance of why Donald Trump is the way he is and personally – disappointingly, as a sufferer at the hands of one of these kinds of people, the book missed the mark by a wide margin. I feel Mary ought to have used much of her clinical understanding and rationale and applied this to the behaviour of certain members of the Trump family to give better clarity of why many feel almost abused when he takes the stage, this didn’t happen. Although interesting from my perspective as I completely empathise with her upbringing, it did kind of smack of sour grapes.
I still would recommend reading this book. It will give you an insight into the Trump world which I think is unbiased in so much as Mary is a Trump, she knows the family better than any else.
Is there an axe to grind here, definitely. Should she have written the book, arguably, yes I think she should have, knowing and understanding the treatment Mary and her brother received to accommodate the greed of Donald (I said arguably). As an American, you need to understand the person that is leading you. As a member of the free world, we also need to understand where the direction of Trump is leading us and it’s a future that I fear.
Greed and a selfish need for absolute power which is why Trump aligns with North Korea, Russia, Brazil and why Trump hates Trudeau, Macron and Merkel or anyone that refuses to congratulate the behaviour of someone who has spectacularity failed in an upward trajectory.
Hit the link and grab a good read. I read this in one sitting because the human aspect of the story was something that I wanted to understand. I already knew why the president behaves in the way that he does, it’s sadly predictable. But understanding the wake of that behaviour is something the 60 odd million voters seem to forgive and forget.
The Book Blurb
Seven days of sin. Seven days of secrets. Seven days to steal her sister’s life.
Beth has always been the golden girl, leaving her identical twin, Alvie, in her shadow. She has everything Alvie ever wanted – the money, the hot husband, the cute baby, the fast car.
So when she invites Alvie for seven sun-drenched days at her luxury villa in Sicily, Alvie accepts. Just because Alvie can’t stand Beth doesn’t mean she can’t enjoy a slice of her decadent lifestyle.
But her usually goody-two-shoes twin has a hidden agenda. And when the sisters swap identities for a day, it ends badly for Beth. Very badly.
It’s Alvie’s chance to steal the life that she deserves . . .
If she can get away with it.