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Tuesday, February 7, 2023
HomeIllinois NewsFoster: The long string of presidential sociopaths is about to get longer

Foster: The long string of presidential sociopaths is about to get longer




By Howard Foster - 

I used to be a member of the American Bar Association, the largest group of lawyers in the country. Among other things, it rates the qualifications of judicial nominees and otherwise tries to police the legal profession. It denounced Richard Nixon after his resignation and encouraged New York authorities to disbar him. He was disbarred though technically he had not been convicted of a crime. That makes sense to me.

Nixon was basically a sociopath and should have gone to prison rather than being pardoned.

Then Bill Clinton left office after the federal judge overseeing the Paula Jones sexual harassment lawsuit found he had committed perjury in his deposition while in office.  She recommended to the Arkansas state bar authorities that he be disciplined.  The ABA said nothing.  Arkansas suspended Clinton’’s law license, finding he lied under oath. He has never practiced law since.  

Shortly after leaving office he was asked to speak at an ABA conference and was given a warm welcome.

He, too, was basically a sociopath.

(I tend to believe the allegations of Juanita Brodderick that he raped her while Attorney General of Arkansas and then threatened to destroy her life if she reported it.  His other crimes and misdeeds spanning his entire adult life are well known and need not be repeated here.)  

The ABA never so much as rebuked Bill Clinton. I dropped my membership in protest for its double standard. My point is that the public perception of our Presidents is distorted by elite opinion.  Clinton was actually impeached. Nixon was not. But history regards Nixon as a sociopath and Clinton as a fairly successful president. I think they should both be regarded as despicable human beings. But despicable people, even sociopaths,  can do some good things as president, and both did. 

Donald Trump is probably a sociopath, though I’m no psychiatrist. He repeatedly breaks the rules the vast majority of people live by, and mostly gets away with it. The media spend most of their time reporting his outbursts and lies. So most of the country believes he is unfit to be president.

Plus he is a Republican, which as the ABA example illustrates, subjects him to the double standard. The antisocial behavior of his opponent, Hillary Clinton, is suppressed. We know about her email scandal. In the coming days the media may or may not report that her private email account was hacked when she was secretary of state, establishing he behavior was worse than reckless.  She compromised national security. 

Which is worse?  The politically correct sociopathic Clinton, repeatedly violating federal laws she finds inconvenient, even if it puts the nation at risk, or the crude, politically incorrect Trump violating standards of social conduct? 

Trump, to my knowledge, is not a criminal.  He’s just grotesque at times.  Hillary, like her husband, has a long history of destroying evidence, perjury, and other crimes undertaken to attain and hold onto power. 

If Trump has any chance of winning this election, he must portray her as the sociopath she is.  Most of the country believes he is one and will not elect him. There is a remote chance the F.B.I. will do this for Trump by recommending her indictment for endangering the nation’s security.  She probably cannot survive being outed  in that manner.

Short of that happening, Trump and his surrogates will need to spend most of the next six months as a sort of shadow grand jury, indicting her conduct as reckless and criminal. This is a very unattractive way of campaigning. I’m not sure it has ever been done successfully.

But Trump supporters have brought us to this point.  They have been willing to overlook his antisocial behavior.  The rest of us cannot.

Howard Foster is an immigration attorney in Chicago.


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  1. The irony of course is that Ted Cruz’s positions would have the greatest sociopathic outcomes. Arguably, Reagan’s positions resulted in more sociopathic outcomes than either Nixon’s or Eisenhower’s. Yuppies did very well in the 80s, greed did very well, which wasn’t entirely bad for economic growth or employment in the short term. Steve Jobs was described as an %$$#^&3, he even made grown men cry, but we enjoy wonderful fruits of his labor even though he was all of that. In the business world, the Trump organization is hardly sociopathic, certainly when compared to Silicon Valley or those brothers who hinted at HR C being a better candidate.

  2. I have to disagree that Trump is a Republican. For many years the Chicago machine has mastered the art of nominating the candidates of both parties so that it does not matter which party wins, the machine wins. Now they have enlarged that classic tactic to the national level. Both major parties will nominate a Democrat for president this year and it does not matter if Trump or Clinton wins because either will follow the same policies. It is always comical to hear Trumpistas claim their guy is “anti-establishment” when he IS the establishment and has been for 40 years.

  3. In other words use the Karl Rove method and lie? .
    accuse your enemies of the things YOU ARE.
    To call Clinton a sociopath and give Trump the clean bill of health? really? What kind of denial is this? Very much turd blossoms techniques. It won’t work.
    Donald Trump has DEFINED HIMSELF as the nut job. Hillary doesn’t even have to do it.

  4. Trump is not establishment because he has never held public office. Rhoads, you, like Michael Medved, are a purist who thinks you can convince people to your side by being lofty, noble, and intellectual. Unfortunately, people in this election cycle aren’t interested in thoughtful, academic arguments. And because you refuse to unite behind the Republican candidate, you will get Hillary, along with a socialist Supreme Court, unbridled immigration, tens of thousands of potentially dangerous Middle Eastern refugees, and higher taxes.

  5. Lake Co Conserv tells us all we need to know. This is the new nasty, bitter, sarcasm that will be the new “cool talk” in the Donald Trump world.
    The more arrogant and rude one can be, the “cooler” he will be – and if, oh my IF, you disagree or have a different opinion, expect to be ridiculed and mocked.
    The new world. And LakeCoConserv is sadly imitating his hero with a new sour cult following. Welcome to the new Brave Trump World.