In the 24 hours since I last wrote to you, brothers and sisters, 4,350 Americans have died from coronavirus. That’s almost one and one half times the number of deaths from the attack of September 11, 2001. That’s almost 2,000 more Americans than died at Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941. There is more shocking difference than similarity here, of course. Those are just the deaths for today. There will be a similar number tomorrow, and the next day, and the next.
Let’s try never to become numb to the grim reality that these are real people with real lives cut short — by months, years and even decades — by that toxic, murdering, raping monster still defiling the People’s House. These coronavirus deaths were real people who were loved and will be mourned. Their deaths left holes in families and communities.
It’s a grim statistic that will never be acknowledged by Donald Trump. Trump will never feel an ounce of remorse or pity for their deaths. If confronted, Trump would blame Barack Obama for their deaths before he blamed himself, even though Obama hasn’t been President for four years.
Welcome to the world of the malignant narcissist. If you’ve managed to live your lives thus far unpoisoned by a narcissist, particularly a malignant one, I congratulate you. You don’t know what you’re missing. It is one of the few instances where ignorance is a good thing.
I’ve had to endure two of them. So you might say my experience with narcissists is more an advanced than undergraduate degree. It is a qualification that has been useful in only one way. It has helped me to accurately predict certain behaviours of Donald Trump thus far. That is an advantage I would have gladly done without. But we make what we can of that which life hands us.
Because of this unwelcome advantage, I laughed when Hillary Clinton said words to the effect that, because Donald Trump won’t acknowledge anything but a decisive win, we must win decisively. My grim experience with narcissists reminded me that no loss, not even the biggest landslide in history, would make Donald Trump believe the election was fair, would make him acknowledge anything except that he was the winner, the winner by a landslide, of course.
I nodded my head with familiar dread when Michael Cohen averred that Donald Trump would never leave the White House willingly if Trump should lose the 2020 election. I acknowledged to myself that there will be blood, that some unknown, unnamed persons have a date with death because Donald Trump is an ungracious loser who believes the universe was made strictly for him. I’ve seen it before, lived it before.
That is why I am quite sure that Donald Trump will never resign the presidency and he will not leave the country after he is removed from office at noon on 20 January, 2021. Narcissists simply don’t do stuff like that.
I want to emphasize that I am not clairvoyant. I can’t see into the future. No one can. Of course Trump could resign. But I will be very, very surprised. And of course he could leave the country. But I doubt it. After enduring with the rest of you the year 2020 I will be the first to acknowledge that anything can happen. But I just doubt it, is all.
For Trump to resign the presidency would be a tacit acknowledgment, a public declaration, that he has done something wrong and he needs to resign because of it. No matter how strategically advantageous a move resignation may be, he won’t make it. Besides, Trump is never strategic. That’s too subtle for him.
But even if he understood the advantage of resignation and a possible pardon from Mike Pence it would be nearly impossible for him to do it because of what resignation implies. Such a public declaration is a kind of humility narcissists simply don’t possess. So don’t worry, Joe Biden is almost assuredly going to be the 46th President of the United States, not the 47th.
Fleeing the country would be similarly out of the question. It would be giving credence to the idea that he has something for which to flee. His contempt for the law is well established, not only because he’s a career criminal and as such a serial lawbreaker, but because this raping, money laundering, defrauding traitor has never spent a single night in jail. He hasn’t because he thinks he’s done nothing wrong.
Not, to be sure, that he’d think the same of others had they done the same things! He will vengefully wield the law and promote prison sentences and death penalties for people who commit the same or far lesser crimes as he, or even no crimes at all. Just as for the Trump organization there are probably two sets of books, for the narcissist there are always two sets of scales. The ones for him are tipped in his favor, the ones for you are tipped the other way.
Right now Trump is writhing in agony because he lost Twitter. He’s seething with desperate ego starvation. Expect more Nuremberg-variety rallies, expect more lies, expect more provocations and expect more deaths. Somewhere out there are Americans by the tens or even hundreds or even thousands with a date with death because Donald Trump is a malignant narcissist. And certainly many thousands of Americans will continue to die from coronavirus because of this self-dealing, evil monster. And, as ever, ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, comrades and friends, stay safe.
Robert Harrington is an American expat living in Britain. He is a portrait painter.