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Donald Trump: Warrior King?

Donald Trump: Warrior King? August 24, 2015

BrainKent Bailey, a professor emeritus of clinical psychology at Virginia Commonwealth University, has written one of the most fatuous diatribes of drivel you are ever likely to encounter. It’s published, of course, at the Worldnetdaily, and it offers up a cartoonish version of evolutionary psychology to justify calling Donald Trump the “quintessential warrior male” that we’ve all supposedly been waiting for to defeat “the pagan forces of progressivism and political correctness.”

The concept of “paleopolitics” is an obvious derivative of human paleopsychology. Indeed, we may easily infer that humans are, at base, political animals who obey more the law of the jungle than the pieties of high culture or the moral righteousness of the godly. Politics is selfish and egoistic, tribalistic and xenophobic to its core, and will readily go to war to win at any cost. It sells itself as “progressive” and of higher things yet most often operates in the gutters of human nature. Politics is not for fops, Pollyannas or the faint-hearted; it is internecine war by another name. It is the game of war, and only the true warriors win.

In the past 60 years or so, America has become progressively feminized, and the archetypal warrior male has virtually disappeared. However, some tough ladies have stepped in to fill the vacuum including Phyllis Schlafly, Laura Ingraham, Sarah Palin and Michelle Malkin and many others. But how would any of these wonderful and strong women compete head-to-head in a private conference room with Vladimir Putin, Kim Jong-un of North Korea, or the mullahs and emirs of the volatile Middle East? We have seen how poorly our current girly-man-in-chief, Barack Obama, has dealt with the world of violent supermales out there. From the dawn of time, mutual respect among warrior males is the coin of the realm in these matters.

For crying out loud, the man thinks we are still living in a Hobbesian state of nature where we are, and should be, in a state of constant war with one another — as opposed to the real world we actually live in, where war is certainly an ever-present possibility but mutual survival is far more likely to require intelligence and cooperation than it is to require muscleheaded brutality. And come on, an allegedly serious academic psychologist referring to the president as a girly man? What is he, 13 years old?

Fox News’ Megyn Kelly seems to see herself as an alpha female capable of taking on any and all opposition – male or female. Yet, when set against the unadulterated masculine intellectual powers and cunning of Donald Trump, it was not a fair fight. She was overpowered to the point of speechlessness and had to take a 10-day vacation to lick her wounds. When the ladies operate within a protective penumbra of political correctness in a highly feminized culture of girly men, it is pretty easy to win intellectual pillow fights.

In 2006, I published a column suggesting that Ann Coulter was the last of the “real men” on the intellectual right. I believe that Ann is the closest on the distaff side to the “in your face warrior hawk” profiled in that article. She may be the brightest and most courageous conservative intellectual in the country who can breathe fire when fire is needed – and that is most of the time. She has wonderfully set the stage for her male warrior counterpart, Donald Trump, who takes primal maleness to levels unseen for at least half a century. The everyday people of America long for strong warrior male leadership of the kind that has sustained the human race from the dawn of time.

There’s no doubt in my mind that this is exactly what a not-insignificant portion of the American public are looking for and that this is what explains Trump’s popularity on the campaign trail. But Bailey bizarrely regards this as a good thing rather than a sign of intellectual regression. The truth is that Trump’s primary appeal is to our most base instincts — racism, tribalism, simplemindedness, ignorance — rather than to any sort of thoughtfulness or intelligence.

Donald Trump is the prototypical, archetypal and testosterone-driven alpha male who rules by the sheer force of his personality, imposing physique, quick wit, mastery of repartee and almost hypnotic control over his gathering masses of adoring followers. He is Attila to the Huns, Henry V to the outnumbered English army, Winston Churchill to desperate allied forces, and now our fearless leader against the pagan forces of progressivism and political correctness. He is the unapologetic, quintessential warrior male of yore capable of vanquishing any and all opposition in his way.

He left out a few rather obvious comparisons: Stalin, Hitler, Mussolini, Pol Pot, Mao. The leader he describes is a brutal tyrant, not the leader of a mature society. And where does he get the idea that Trump is some sort of macho man? Imposing physique? Hardly. And that horrible combover of his practically screams his insecurity in refusing to admit that he’s bald. And his pathetic need to bluster and posture and bully people is not a sign of strength and confidence, it’s a sign of weakness and insecurity. How does a clinical psychologist not understand the idea of overcompensation?

Early in the article, Bailey cites neuroscientist Paul MacLean as theorizing that “the human brain is composed of a primeval reptilian segment at the lowest level, a mammalian segment at mid-level and a human or neocortical segment at the highest level.” So far as I know (this is hardly an area of expertise for me), this is accepted by the consensus of science. And while that analysis may be useful in understanding why human beings behave the way they do in many circumstances, Bailey seems perfectly content to have humans rely solely on that reptilian brain and forfeit the use of reason and intelligence that is only possible because of the mammalian and human portions of the brain. For an academic, I find that more than just a bit bizarre and appalling.

Let me also add that I find it even weirder that the Worldnetdaily would publish a column arguing for a political conclusion on the basis of human evolution, something that outlet rejects completely in favor of young earth creationism.

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