THE TRUMP DIARIES: 1/24/17
When you grow up with a liar who’s a parent, and you manage to survive the experience more or less intact, you develop a keen awareness of the lie.
The capacity for observation coupled with an insect-like attentiveness is almost synonymous with a definition for anxiety and, Lord knows, anxiety is a thoughtful adaptation to living with a liar.
With Trump, the lies are heartfelt, and like any good liar he believes his lies, and is offended, deeply so, when questioned or challenged. When he is confronted with a lie he has told, his identity unravels. It’s not just a lie for him, it is a way of life.
When a human being loses his or her sense of identity, the reaction is anger. Anger is a response to not knowing who you are.
Trump does not know who he is.
Certainly he was never an inventive or courageous person, a hero on the playing field, a dreamer lost in books, a raconteur, a kid at the top of his class, a big guy others feared. He’s always been kind of a Zelig, a no-man’s land, a cipher whose best skills lie in manipulating the truth.
There’s something to be said for that, his determination to make an identity for himself when what really characterizes him is the depth of his unexamined life.
But beneath the bravado and anger is a shame so bottomless that it inspires him each day to try and fill the pit with lies, countless lies.
The easiest and best way to defeat this character is to recognize what he fears most and say it to his face.
He is telling us what he fears: Being a loser, being ashamed of not being great, being exposed for not really being there.
Just be prepared for the vociferous backlash when he is cornered.
And remember he’s: “Like a dog!… it was as if the shame of it should outlive him.”