Am I Off Base to Question the President’s Mental Well Being?

Trump tweeted twice today about discussion a joint cyber security unit with Putin (an idea that seems crazy to me), and several hours later tweeted again about it.

The first Here’s the first tweet (and I included part of the subsequent tweet because it completed the sentence):

Putin & I discussed forming an impenetrable Cyber Security unit so that election hacking, & many other negative things, will be guarded…..and safe.

Here’s the second tweet later on in the evening:

The fact that President Putin and I discussed a Cyber Security unit doesn’t mean I think it can happen. It can’t-but a ceasefire can,& did!

It should be noted that in between the two tweets there were negative reactions to the first tweet. For example, Republican Senator Ben Sasse:

And Republican Senator Marco Rubio:

I should also mention that the Treasury Secretary, before Trump’s second tweet, spoke positively about this cyber security arrangement:

Secretary Mnuchin’s comments strongly suggests to me that he and the administration supported and believed that this cyber security arrangement was a done deal and a good thing. He’s defending it, in spite of Senator Rubio’s criticism of it.

And then Trump’s second tweet totally undercuts that. What’s going on?

Honestly, my initial reaction was confusion. The two tweets, taken together, was incoherent to me, and I first started thinking about his mental stability. Given some of the reaction after the first tweet, it seems like Trump perhaps panicked and wants to step away from the agreement. But even if that’s what happened (and I have no idea if that’s accurate), I still feel like the two tweets are really odd.

I’m curious to hear about reaction from others about this. Do you guys think I’m going off the deep end by wondering about Trump’s mentality stability? (And I should note that I’m reacting to these tweets within the context of everything else I’ve read and seen from Trump up this point.) Do the tweets seem normal to you, and how do you understand them?

By the way, I’m at the point where I believe the GOP should be working with the Democrats to not only investigate Trump, but to start seriously considering impeaching and removing the President. I’ve seen enough to to think that he is unfit and is putting our country in danger. (Exhibit A: Trump essentially gave highly classified intelligence to Russia–intel from Israel–while being investigated for collusion with Russia.)

11 Responses to “Am I Off Base to Question the President’s Mental Well Being?”


  1. Reid

    I saw a recap about these tweets and the broader context of Russian interference and Trump’s position regarding this:

    Recap:
    Hack never happened
    We have no idea who hacked us
    Obama did nothing about hack
    Setting up unit for non-existent hack
    Maybe, maybe not

    Just a few days ago at the G20 Summit, Trump seemed to acknowledge that the Russians interfered in our election and then in a press conference cast doubt on whether they did or not (which also casts doubt on the judgment of our intelligence community).

    He would flip-flop between casting doubt and then blaming Obama for not doing much.

    Now he seems to be touting the cyber security unit with Russia and then saying it will never happen.

    Something doesn’t seem right with him.

  2. Mitchell

    I’m curious to hear about reaction from others about this. Do you guys think I’m going off the deep end by wondering about Trump’s mentality stability? (And I should note that I’m reacting to these tweets within the context of everything else I’ve read and seen from Trump up this point.) Do the tweets seem normal to you, and how do you understand them?

    Not off the deep end. Almost everything you’re pointing out makes sense. I wouldn’t do it, but as was made clear by the Tom Brady PED conversation, we have different approaches to this kind of thing.

    Of course the tweets don’t seem normal to me. Nothing about this human being’s participation in the electoral process or government has seemed normal (and I literally mean nothing). But I also learned long ago that you can’t judge a person by his online behavior. There’s sometimes a wide disparity between online personality and offline personality. I have friends I enjoy very much in person whom I won’t follow or pay any attention to online. In one realm a friend. In another insufferable.

    Edit: I’m working on a personal project where I’m trying to write thirty-one poems in thirty-one days. I might borrow your “mentality stability” phrase. It’s got a nice sound.

  3. Reid

    I really appreciate the response. Sometimes it is difficult to know if I’m embracing crazy ideas, so hearing from others like you and Don helps me get a sense of that.

    I wouldn’t do it, but as was made clear by the Tom Brady PED conversation,…

    By “do it,” I assume you mean impeaching/removing Trump. I’m not how that connects to the Brady PED conversation, though. But I’m not so interested in discussing this more, so feel free to ignore this.

    Of course the tweets don’t seem normal to me. Nothing about this human being’s participation in the electoral process or government has seened normal (and I literally mean nothing).

    I’ll say two things for what its worth:

    1. Yes, Trump’s participation in the electoral process was not normal. But that could be true, while his mental well-being was relatively normal as well. For example, he could be eccentric or even doing crazy things as an act. To be clear (and I think you know this already), when I say “normal” I’m specifically referring to his mental health.

    2. His behavior and rhetoric offline is just as weird, bizarre.

  4. Mitchell

    By “do it,” I assume you mean impeaching/removing Trump. I’m not how that connects to the Brady PED conversation, though. But I’m not so interested in discussing this more, so feel free to ignore this.

    I would impeach him upon first reasonable opportunity, but I was answering the question about whether you were off base to question the man’s mental health. I wouldn’t speculate (at least not publicly or out loud) about someone else’s mental health without enough information, and a public persona is not enough information based on my experience and my very, very limited knowledge of mental health. Just as I would not speculate (at least not publicly or out loud) about someone’s drug use based on stuff I don’t know anything about.

    I know a lot about dyslexia, enough to make a reasoned (unofficial) assessment if I have enough info about a student. I might speculate about that, after making all the disclaimers (I am not a diagnostician, that kind of thing), but it would depend on the audience. I don’t know nearly enough about mental health or the person in office to do similar. I’m not saying someone else shouldn’t. I’m saying I’m not comfortable with it.

  5. Reid

    OK, I see what you’re saying, and your position seems totally appropriate.

    To be clear, I don’t mean to question his mental fitness in a clinical way. Imagine if you had a co-worker that behaved strangely, and you said to another co-worker,” Man, something seems wrong with that guy, mentally.” I would assume you weren’t making a clinical diagnosis. That’s sort of where I’m coming from, for what it’s worth.

  6. Reid

    I’m Not Sure Mental Instability Sufficiently Explains This Decision

    And once against I’m bewildered. From WaPo: Justice Department Nominee Acknowledges Work for a Russian Bank but Pledges Independence

    This bank, Alfa Bank, appeared in the dossier put together by a former MI6 agent. We don’t know what’s true or false in that dossier, but still, why would you nominate a person that represented this bank, when your administration is being investigated.

    Anyone?

  7. Mitchell

    When was the nomination submitted? Is it possible it was submitted before the dossier hit the news?

  8. Mitchell

    The Boy Scout speech is far more mystifying to me. A ridiculous stain on what’s supposed to be a politics-free gathering. Nearly as offensive to me as the dissing he did of the gold-star family.

  9. Reid

    When was the nomination submitted? Is it possible it was submitted before the dossier hit the news?

    I’m not sure, but the sense I get is that this is a relatively recent nominee. If if it is, what’s your take.

    By the way, I could also include Trump’s decision to talk to Putin, privately, at the G20 Summit. (His second interaction that only came out later.) His campaign is under investigation, people suspect him of colluding, but he thinks it’s OK to have that type of conversation–without any U.S. officials, without disclosing this to the public? It’s truly bizarre, right?

    The Boy Scout speech is far more mystifying to me. A ridiculous stain on what’s supposed to be a politics-free gathering. Nearly as offensive to me as the dissing he did of the gold-star family.

    I purposely avoided watching or reading too much about this. I felt it would just upset me, and I didn’t want to put myself through that. I did read a tweetstorm, and I was going to post it here, but decided against it.

    In any event, I totally can see why you would see this as offensive as his comments about the Khan family. But I don’t think what he did as that mystifying, and I’m not saying this to be contentious or criticize you indirectly somehow. I get why people might be mystified. This kind of thing seems to fit a pattern.

    His decisions about Russia, though, seem way more puzzling to me. They point to some pretty far-fetched explanations that make me feel uncomfortable to accept.

  10. Reid

    Heather Heyer was the protestor that was killed by a white nationalist.

    Trump praised her because she said something nice about him. Is that normal? Who knows if Trump is a narcissist in the clinical sense, but doesn’t this make you wonder?

    And then I believe he brags about the winery he owns in Virginia at the end of this–not only promoting/bragging about his company, but seemingly oblivious to the need and obligation to visit Charlotttesville to bringing healing, express concern–you know, the things a POTUS would do.

    Greg Sargent, from WaPo said something the other day that I agree with. Trump has no sense of duty or a sense obligation to the country. I totally agree with that. It’s almost literally all about him.

  11. Reid

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