When I first heard the term, "The Dark Triad," my mind conjured up a B movie scene where a malevolent group gathered at midnight to sacrifice a virgin under a full moon chanting something ominous. Little did I know, after I researched the phrase, that the "group" in my mind would be gathered in one person and the B movie chant was, "build-the-wall, Build-the Wall, BUILD-THE WALL!"
Since "The Donald" foisted upon us his ratings-grabbing, campaign-announcing escalator scene (where he paid people to be in the audience!), anger and rage have skyrocketed in America. Crimes of hate were going down until he took that escalator ride. His "Campaign Announcement" speech was dark and violent, calling Mexicans murders and rapists, and his "Inaugural" speech was so dark that it is known as the "American Carnage" speech.
Interestingly, the carnage of which he spoke was prophetic. He insinuated that the carnage was already happening and that he would end it. When in fact, the carnage was only beginning.
In my view, Donald Trump is a triple threat of darkness known to psychologists as "The Dark Triad" personality.
Psychologists who are experienced with The Dark Triad personality, are quick to say that there are many subtleties and degrees in the many traits presented, but there is nothing subtle in Donald Trump. We see his Dark Triad personality visibly every day, like a B Movie aberration, with his cruel, vindictive hostage-taking government shutdown and the repulsive atrocities happening at our Southern border such as using immigrant children as "bait" to catch sponsors.
What is The Dark Triad? It is the combination of three distinct and malformed personalities types: narcissism, psychopathy, and Machiavellianism. Just one of these personality types can damage just about anything with which they come in contact " relationships, families, workplaces, organizations. Where ever they go so goes destruction and disruption. It is imperative for us and our country to learn about these personality types and the devastating, rare combination of all three so that we develop a filter through which to read a tweet and hear a speech.
One resource I read said that if you are concerned about a colleague who may exemplify these personalities, you should discuss your concerns with your Human Resources department. What can be done if your fear is that The Dark Triad personality you're concerned about is the President of the United States?
Americans now have had plenty of time to observe their President's behaviors. Actions speak louder than words, but in "The Donald's" case, words speak loudly too. To quote Maya Angelou, "When someone tells you who they are " believe them."
Our President's actions are so unbelievable that they are difficult to believe. To believe that he actually means what he says and that he is really doing what he does is nearly incomprehensible. Yet, "believe" we must. We must believe and understand the actions of a Dark Triad person or else how might we correct the damage, to heal the deep wounds perpetrated on our country and society?
When George W. Bush was president, I facilitated an international meeting on Information Literacy in Egypt. A colleague and I took a long taxi cab ride to an airport, and we had a chance to get to know our cab diver a little. After a while, he gently started to talk about President Bush. He was vague, not knowing how we would respond. We quickly understood, and my colleague blurted out, "We didn't vote for him!" Our taxi driver then felt more comfortable to make a few observations about our president, and I will never forget one comment, "Bush. Not a normal man."
I often think of that astute Egyptian taxi driver and wonder what he thinks of our America president now?
What are "The Dark Triad" character traits?
Below are brief summarizations of the three, distinct personality traits of narcissism, psychopathy, and Machiavellianism. All three are rarely present in one person . Included are, in my view, a few examples of Donald Trump's Dark Triad behavior characteristics (I'm sure you will think of more, and many are so obvious no example is necessary) to support my thesis that our president, our Commander-in-Chief is dark-times-three and the exponential results are as frightening to me as early Germany was to the 20th Century: