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At this point let us approach the concept of what would cause Bill or Hillary Clinton to become borderline psychotics or borderline personalities. This is especially confusing from the view that Hillary had an almost ideal childhood. Bill's mental disorder might be explained from his turbulent background, but such explanation seems insufficient when weighted against his casual attitude toward life. I will venture a partially simplified explanation here. What I am about to say disagrees in principle with many in the psychiatric and psychological establishment.
Upon the original writing of this and previous installments in this series I was strongly admonished by an angry New York clinical psychologist who felt strong need to defend the Clintons, and what the Clintons represent. She began by attempting to browbeat and intimidate me into submission with a list of her degrees and experiences. Then, among other things she told me how much the grief over the death of Ron Brown must have affected Bill Clinton and produced his behavior. In our subsequent discussion, pointing out the fact that Clinton barely knew Ron Brown and that Clinton had a well established pattern long before he ever met Ron Brown didn't affect the course of her argument. From thence she told me the use of the term psychosis in any form relative to the Clintons was in serious and even deliberately malicious error. Psychotics, she said, evidence hallucinations and similar phenomena. Consequently, the Clintons and those paralleling or allied with them do not bear even any tangential relationship with anything containing the term.
At various periods there has been floating around as a standard joke the amusing caricature of the crazy mental patient striding about the state hospital ward with his hand in his vest who believes he's Napoleon. The question is, at some point, can a person's thought processes be so at odds with reality that he may be considered crazy, even though that person may not exhibit hallucinations, bizarreness of language and bodily gestures, or whatever. Should, for instance, the Heaven's Gate people who reasoned there was a giant alien space ship hidden behind the Hale-Bopp comet which would take them to another galaxy if they committed group suicide be considered psychotic? At one period in the history of psychiatry this distortion of thought as a standard of psychosis was an assumption. It is an assumption with which I still agree. My position also is that a person's thought patterns can be distorted only to the point of their being nearly nuts, borderline psychotic. Indeed, there may be cultures or subcultures exhibiting such conditions.
The present position among many in the mental health professions has moved away from evaluation of thought disorder as a standard for determining psychosis. There has arisen a degree of leniency in acceptance of thought disorder by those who are compliant or who, themselves, have lost secure track of reality. Criteria of what constitutes thought disorder have been blunted by political correctness, by views that different perceptions of reality are mere differences of opinion, and so forth. There is now seldom such a thing as acknowledged thought disorder except in cases where it is freely attributed to the political right. There is only pluralism and relativism. Within this pluralism and relativism there is protection for the Clintons.
That a naked man on his hands and knees in the Oval Office of the White House getting oral-anal sexual stimulation from a glorified brainless high school girl might be evidence of serious psychiatric disorder is no longer a consideration. That a husband-wife team would justify it and accuse such consideration as being the machinations of a mysterious conspiracy should be viewed as further evidence of serious psychiatric disorder by both people is also no longer a consideration.
Furthermore, that since this original writing Bill Clinton makes up to $350,000 per night making speeches characterized in content by what could be heard from a high school kid and could be reelected president while his wife has become senator and is well on the road to a successful run for the presidency is indication of the similarly dysfunctional condition of a segment of the United States and world population.
In the case of the clinical psychologist and others like her, she might be advised to go back for another doctorate degree and maybe the second time she'll learn something. But the departments are so entirely leftist/counterculturally dominated that the certification is one of political dedication as much as one of personal competency, and a second go-around is not apt to result in much improvement.
In those instances where congenital predisposing physical condition are not the primary factor, it is often assumed that childhood emotional or physical abuse is the basis of adult maladjustment. This was extensively true prior to the 60s. However, it is also true that doting parents giving children their way in an undisciplined permissive environment can produce very serious irreversible mental disorder that is delayed until that child becomes an adolescent or adult. What is produced is a child who is cosmetically very well functioning as long as he or she is kept in a spoiled child's world forever, but is completely unable to make the transition into the adult world and reality. Let it also be pointed out that turbulent parental background does not prohibit spoiling a child. Children are very adept at exploiting parental preoccupation with parental problems in such a way as to avoid taking uncomfortable responsibility. It's essential to evaluate beyond simple parental problems.
The period after WWII saw a massive cultural change in the child developmental atmosphere in America. In earlier generations there had been the rule of spare the rod and spoil the child. But the time had now come when parents were being told by a new breed of permissive authorities that parents were not to tell children "No!" and make it stick. There was a super-rational system of childrearing in which parents were to reason with children instead of using authority. One unfortunate effect of this was that children and adolescents found they could pretend ignorance of any parental explanations and do what they wanted to with no serious repercussions. A second consequence was that if at any time the child became a better debater than the parent, the child or adolescent got to do what he wanted while parents were demoted to the role of being pleading and whining children even when the parents were correct. It became obvious by the mid-60s that the country had produced a generation of young orators who could argue any side of a case with the cleverness of a trial lawyer.
This had three disastrous consequences.
First, the word "no" did not need to be taken seriously. "No" was only a signal to fearlessly concoct psychobabble arguments while doing what you wanted to. You cannot tell many in the Clinton generation no and have it respected. The absence of continued response to their interminable inane argumentation is interpreted by them as permission for them to do as they want. The moral, behavioral, intellectual architecture, and social pressures of this have been passed, in some cases quite aggressively, to succeeding generations.
Ultimately, this has produced generational crusades against "no" and against the most reasonable taboos or prohibitions.
Second, and the importance of this absolutely can not overemphasized, in being allowed laxity in return for inane arguments a generation came to believe that it could argue reality out of existence. This formed the foundation for very serious mental disorder. In recent decades the failure of thoughts, of speech, of behavior to conform to basic reality is no longer a signal to a person that he may be doing or saying something irrational. Rather, it has become interpreted as a sign that one has a public relations problem that must be addressed by creating a new series of arguments in a campaign to deny reality. At the presidential level this necessitates a campaign to obscure or redefine what the words "sex" and "is" mean.
Third, this both delays and intensifies childhood temper tantrums. All of us need to be told there are things we can't have or can't do. The result of this in childhood is a series of transient angry temper tantrums and poutings that wise parents should know comes with the territory until the child learns to accept reality and responsibility. If the child doesn't learn certain basic realities and responsibilities at six or eight, he will have a temper tantrum when confronted by those realities at 10 or 12. But by 10 or 12 the uncorrected irresponsibility is on its way to becoming a permanent way of life that is hard to reverse. Since the mid 1960s this country has been flooded with generations of young who are having infantile temper tantrums at age 18, 25, or even 50 for personal conflicts with reality that should have been resolved by age six or 10. It has been the curse of this nation, and now the world. It doesn't kill a kid to have a temper tantrum when he finds he can't have his way at age six. But the last 35 years should have taught the lesson that it kills parents and society when adolescents or adults have temper tantrums and discipline problems at later ages.
Many in a generation of parents who had survived the depression didn't want their children to suffer and work the same way as they had. Concurrently, with the development of TV, children were raised in an nearly constant amusement-inundated fantasy life that did not make demands on them for development of substance, depth, self-discipline, responsibility, or effort for full participation.
In terms of personal development and schooling for life, the baby boomer life curriculum began with Captain Kangaroo, proceeded with a six-year course in Howdy Doody and Mickey Mouse Club, and upon puberty graduate work began in rock-and-roll and Beach Blanket Bingo movies without any intrusion of serious responsibility or consequences into student lives. It resulted in massive numbers of 20-year-olds with mentalities undeveloped past the level of Mickey Mouse Club. Mickey Mouse Clinton completed puberty unaccompanied by any form of maturity or seriousness and went on to gleefully sticking his penis in strange women's faces in hotel rooms or grope women who walked into the Oval Office in what was, among other things, an exercise of bush league childishness. Minnie Mouse came to the White House with him and has her own agenda of militant immaturity.
By virtue of TV, a generation was raised in show business and developed show business personalities. Many of them can assume any role or appearance and have an astounding capacity to remember lines. Academic life blossomed accordingly. The college Sociology 101 final exam is scene two, take five, flawlessly performed, resulting in an A average achieved without any understanding, without critical reasoning development, with absolutely no level of introspection and with absolutely abysmal levels of ignorance through the doctoral level if one plays the game with suitable proficiency. This is Bill Clinton and Hillary Rodham graduating from Yale law school. Since the 1960s this nation has been plagued with a mass of pompous incompetent high-grade-point ignoramuses sporting glittering personalities, a plague we may not survive.
In earlier decades educational periods were shorter, while entry into the adult world of responsibility and serious work occurred earlier. In the Iowa high school I went to during the early to mid 50s, many of the students took substantial responsibility in running family farms. Many of the high school seniors were serious MEN, and proud of it. One of the reasons a cow college like Iowa State University graduated so many people who became corporation presidents is because of a student body composed of a hardy breed of mature farm kids who were accustomed to effort and responsibility.
But, in the 60s, entry into adulthood had been deferred as educational levels increased. Simultaneously, the teenage period, which formerly ended with high school graduation or earlier exit from school, became extended indefinitely, and became an end in itself. Affluence produced a well-financed enjoyable teenage subculture with teenage-oriented movies, teenage automobiles, teenage music, a ready supply of recreational drugs, and so forth. The question is, with a teenage world offering music, entertainment, sex, drugs, with little responsibility, what reason is there to leave that world and enter into adulthood? Answer: None. In the mid 60s a generation faced with leaving the teenage world said, to quote one of the anti-war chants of the period, "Hell no, we won't go." Many of them haven't left to this day and are still furiously rebelling against entering the adult world 35 years later. In testimony, we now have had two perpetual teenagers occupying the White House as president and first lady. Bill and Hillary, like half the liberals in this country, have an absolute hatred of the adult world.
The kid who has too easy a life distanced from serious work and responsibility, and who is given too much, easily becomes a socialist. For reasons of space limitation I'll provide only two reasons. First, he or she is raised unacquainted with the realities of what is required to make a business or society function. There is no respect for the work other people have done or for the people who do it because there is no familiarity with serious sustained work.
Second, effortless receiving without responsibility or effort becomes viewed as a premise in life, and the individual with that premise looks for a government to act as a permissive parent surrogate that will continue that process.
One of the legacies of the 60s is a hyper-expansion of a dominant, educated soft leftist superclass that is hostile to the adult world and adult responsibilities, and which has no appreciation or awareness of the concrete work and talent needed to make the country run. The professions of TV and journalism offer a haven for such two-dimensional glibly entertaining and economically naive hot house plants who would be incapable of survival in any other world. They dominate the cultural conceptual pool of ideas to the exclusion of reality.
It is possible to produce an adolescent or adult environment that is so psychotic that no reasonable adaptation to it is possible, even by someone from a well-adjusted childhood. The spoiled generation of the 60s constructed such an environment with the unreasoned egocentric demands they made upon each other, and upon life. Particularly instrumental in producing this environment was the so-called sexual revolution in which people took turns maiming each other. There was a demand for instant love, instant mercurial sexual gratification, instant trust, instant vulnerability, and instant disposability and replacement with somebody else on momentary impulse. It was emotionally crippling to anyone with a healthy capacity. Marriages couldn't survive people entering them with that mentality and began crumbling in astronomical proportions.
To a great extent the young of the 60s were guided and pushed into this by the alienated, crazy, and angry from previous generations. Anthropologist Margaret Mead whose own life was a mess and whose academic work and publications were revealed to be a fraudulent attempt to justify that life, Playboy Hugh Hefner whose own personal relationships were glamorized photogenic cold predation with a total environment bed and chrome-plated Hi-Fi sets, Cosmopolitan Helen Gurley Brown who was a successful genetic experiment in attempts to achieve absolute levels of shallowness, and movies showing sex scenes by actresses who were vocal proponents of liberation but suicidal in their personal lives, all lead the dance.
The sexual revolution worked for the first three years and works for the first three years after puberty. After that there is a pool of jaded, angry, mistrustful, bitter, warped empty shells and the fun is over. People engaging in the sexual revolution didn't want the jaded bitter products of the sexual revolution. What was wanted was a perpetual supply of innocent vulnerable new territory, which they quickly ran out of. Part of the trouble with the sexual revolution and sexual permissiveness is that people use up life too soon and in the wrong way.
The men in the country were disgusted with a generation of women who they secretly wished had had the depth and intelligence to resist the nonsense. A generation of women was becoming enraged because while they were proudly announcing their social and sexual liberation, they found they were getting VD and getting pregnant. Furthermore, when they announced that commitment and love no longer needed to be a prerequisite for sex, they were unaccountably infuriated when their declared uncommitted transient sex partners walked out the door the next morning never to be seen again. Furthermore, women found that men of any depth or decency had retreated and were off hiding in the bushes in disgust, leaving women with the highly revolting development of having to choose among a remaining pool of men who were just as shallow as they were for partners in their sexual liberation. A large proportion of an entire generation consisted of a pool of disgusted and/or predatory men facing a pool of infuriated liberal women.
Suicide rates among women went up to 150 percent of what they had been, and after a five-year lag the suicide rate of men caught up.
Women could no longer afford crippling emotional involvement with men only to be traded off the next weekend. While many of them practiced liberated sex, they remained emotionally distanced. What evolved was a new breed of woman who was sexually active, even hypersexual, but emotionally celibate, and castrating. In their emotional self-protection they stayed away from men who they could become intimately involved with and engaged in emotionally safe sterile relationships where they had invulnerability and control. As the women became more warped, men found the prospect of deep involvement with them to be distasteful, if not crippling. For some, these emotionally sterile relationships evolved into impersonal marriages into which both partners carried a fundamental resentment and hostility toward each other, toward marriage, and toward family life.
At this point the collective rage and hostility toward men by American women was expressed in formation of the woman's liberation movement, and Gloria Steinem who had had an abortion in 1956 during her own play period contributed the credibility of her strikingly glamorous Diana Rigg look to the movement. It sold like a cosmetics ad in a woman's magazine, and an articulate warped bitterness toward men became culturally institutionalized along with emotionally detached sexuality and legalization, if not glamorization, of abortion.
It is occasionally asked why women voted overwhelmingly to put the Clintons in office since Bill Clinton represents the very worst that women have been complaining about for three decades, and is one of worst fathers imaginable. Among a host of other reasons, Hillary Clinton's angry emotional sterility and hostility toward marriage legitimizes many women's similar attitudes and defenses. Additionally, the ultimate defense against betrayal by others is a preemptive betrayal of one's self before someone else can do it¾ often through adopting a cynicism. Bill Clinton offers the emotional safety of feeding that protective cynicism. Bill Clinton is so visibly corrupt, superficial, and worthless that he offers the safety of no chance of betrayal through mistaking his motives or capabilities. It's easy to maintain emotional distance. For a woman (or women) with emotional incapacity, or looking for emotional distance, Bill Clinton is made to order, and women receive the bonus of an abortion along the way. In many cases women can't criticize Bill Clinton because they have been dating, shacked up with, or married to his equivalent. More of this will be examined later in this series.
Bill Clinton is also safe from another aspect. He doesn't make emotional or psychological demands on women lacking those capacities. Hillary is an insecure empty shell who has used left-wing causes to synthesize a personality for herself. A man of any depth would reveal her own inadequacies to herself and drive both her and him to distraction. A shallow Bill Clinton is just about as much as she and millions like her can handle.
One way or another, women are profoundly confused because for the last 40 years they have been attacked and undermined by everybody¾and it's been nearly universally culturally institutionalized. The initial license for attack came from the Playboy philosophy. However, many of the principle underminers and exploiters of women have been other women¾the Helen Gurley Browns, the Margaret Meads, the Gloria Steinems, etc. The woman who messes up her own life resents those who haven't and works to undermine them so they have nothing better than she has. Women who buy into the nonsense make it a point to sell it to other women.
Many years ago, when I went through army basic training at Ft. Leonard Wood, there was a grizzled old master sergeant by the name of Sgt. Gibbon who ran the hand grenade range. In 1965 or 66 Life Magazine did a story on the military. They interviewed Gibbon who was still part of the training cadre. Gibbon complained bitterly that in all his years in the service, which probably went back to the time of General Grant, he had never seen waves of recruits and inductees as absolutely hopeless as he had been getting in the previous two years. They weren't that way because an entire generation of parents suddenly engaged in child abuse 20 years earlier.
I entered college in the mid-50s. I left for a period and spent time in the army. After leaving the army, I returned to the university in the 60s. In the mid-50s the student union was so clean you could eat off the floor. If a student spilled something, he or she would get a mop and clean it up. In 1965 the union was a swill with spilled drinks and wrappers scattered over the floors, chairs, and tables. The library was being destroyed. Students wanting information would simply tear the pages out of the books without concern or conscience. Yet the air was filled with abstract speeches about social justice and left-wing causes. The condition of the union and the library said more about a generation of students than did the leftist rhetoric. The grim reality was that pretense about abstract social concerns was being used to obscure and license a substrate of self-centered militant irresponsibility and barbarism.
A generation has gone on to tear hell out of everything, including each other, for decades while mouthing empty left-wing rhetoric to justify themselves. They have crippled each other and their children with the same type of egocentric agenda seen in the Clinton marriage. Virtually every psychiatric study has shown a rate of serious mental disorder in the Clinton generation from five to 10 times greater than the age group 10 years older. I can not seriously relate this to a sudden upsurge of abuse in childhood. What I do see is an egocentric generation that got its way about too much, too soon, too often, and with too little effort.
I see the explosion of mental disorder coming from a multitude of sources, but four concern me in this limited space.
One, in concocting irrational rationalizations enabling them to excuse anything or do anything, many in the Clinton generation both lost track of reality and pushed themselves and those around them into the realm of psychotic levels of irrationality, and ever-expanding denial of reality¾ to the point where the now-recent President of the United States denies knowing what "sex" is or what the word "is" means. But it isn't just about sex. Their concepts of politics or economics are no more rational than their concepts of sex, and to question any of it is considered a threat to all of it.
Two, as psychotic levels of rationalization became more widespread, they came to create and dominate an unhealthy national psychological environment. It's not uncommon to hear serious presentations on TV, including by the president, that would indicate severe pathology in any competent clinical evaluation. The psychotic psychological environment in this country is lethal. Talk shows and magazines are filled with proselytizations of pathology. Music and musicians are like escapees from mental wards or rogue motorcycle gangs. In the churches, 30 percent of clergy admit sexual affairs with parishioners and preach sermons accordingly. Fifty years ago the media environment, the church environment, the entertainment environment, the political environment, and the educational environment furnished a psychological environment that was corrective of mental disorder. For the last 35 years that environment has been exhorting mental disorder and hostility toward the basic underwriting of self-disciplined behavior.
Three, the necessary protective moral standards by which people treat each other as adults have eroded to an extent that is nearly unsurvivable. What members of a generation have done to each other has driven then nuts. We live in a amoral environment where you can't even leave the President of the United States alone in the Oval Office with a high school girl, and there are tens of millions of people in this country defending it while those who have serious reservations about such a mentality are accused of sexual McCarthyism on national TV.
Four, too many people since the mid '60s have devised a delusional system whereby they look upon reality and pleas to take basic responsibility as an oppressive right-wing conspiracy. They have been supported in this belief by the media instead of having it challenged.
Since the mid '60s there has developed the problem of unbounded self-centeredness producing a mentality such that characteristics of the external world are interpreted by people as being the inverted characteristics of themselves rather than being characteristics of the external world. This parallels the classical defense mechanisms of demeaning the goal or sour grapes. More precisely, personal failure is attributed to being a quality of the task or external world rather than being the result of personal fault.
In the case of the Clintons there exists two basically shallow, coarse, trashy, cold, brutal, and unlovable people who not only have never attempted to be anything else beneath display of superficial affectation, but have attempted to dignify the condition into being one of social liberation from a vast right wing conspiracy. The relationship between the Clintons models the generational condition that produced a 60% divorce rate.
In the liberated view the problem is exteriorized so that it supposedly becomes one not of the attitudes and personal characteristics one or both parties bring into a marriage or other relationships, but is instead inverted into being an intrinsic characteristic of marriage. The direction then becomes one of hostility toward marriage and monogamy.
The basic process applies not only to marriage but to any area. Many among a generation not good at much of anything that is not based on emotional expression have created various forms of personal crusade against the world which are more fundamentally crusades to deny serious personal deficiency.
To a certain extent these defenses exist in a large number of people in limited degree. But, when they become entire schools of thought and generalized ways of life the situation begins to approach serious thought disorder and aggressive delusion. The result has been various forms of aggressive attack upon the nation and the culture.
In recent decades neither the physical world nor the prevailing non-judgemental social atmosphere attempted to be imposed to support that denial now intercede to correct development of psychopathology. Furthermore, we live in a social condition where people whose primary interest is in protecting their condition are both in the position of evaluating their selves, and are in the position of designing and instructing others in the evaluative process.
The Clintons surfed this psychotic cultural and generational wave into the White House.
The attempt has been made to understand Bill and Hillary Clinton, particularly Bill, in terms of classical neurosis from abusive childhoods. But much of what is seen in the Clinton generation has made that model obsolete, although many from that generation, including psychiatrists and psychologists, desperately hold on to it to relieve themselves of any personal responsibility.
The truth is, Bill and Hillary Clinton have not suffered a bit of inconvenience since childhood including, for Bill, the inconvenience of military service. The most impressive pattern in their lives is that of ease and artificiality. By his freshman year in high school Bill found he could manipulate people with showy glibness and deception, and nobody would call him on it. A good memory for acting lines would carry him through easy courses in the most prestigious schools in the country without effort or necessity to learn seriously. From there, he went almost immediately to being the boy governor of a state, and on to the presidency. It was all done with a little empty talk on a level that could be found on any high school debate team.
Hillary has led a similar life of ease and is now being pushed to take a senate seat (the campaign for which was highly successful since this original writing) and run for the presidency in 2004 on a platform of angrily confronting a vast right-wing conspiracy which essentially consists of making accusatory and sarcastic remarks at you and me through a TV screen to the delight of angry women, spoiled angry leftists, and angry minorities. It isn't a bad life for an untalented spoiled brat who, without the world of TV and alienated politics, would be lucky to hold a job as a incompetent waitress in a truck stop.
The problem with the both Clintons is that they were long ago licensed to think and act at primitive, immature, and irrational levels of functioning. Much of this was a self-conferred licensing by a generation which has continued, and which has been the root of most of the political, economic, and social problems in America. To put it bluntly, like many others in recent decades, the Clintons believe they are special. Their unwarranted confidence in that belief has propelled them toward a condition of dangerous tyrannical megalomania. In reality, they are not special. They have undeveloped undisciplined mediocre minds orbiting around a self-centeredness. The Clintons are fundamentally narrow in interest and cultivation and exhibit no exceptional insights. This condition has become a cultural pattern in generations since the 1960s Much of Clinton power resides in their appeal to those who share their condition.
The psychopathic personality and borderline/borderline psychosis, or even severe thought disorder psychosis are not mutually exclusive categories. Mental disorder can produce an enormous passion and sense of mission or dedication. The rules my which that mission is accomplished become those conferred by a sense of personal specialness and megalomania which displace all other forms of conscience, assuming any personal conscience existed originally.
To preclude potential criticism of this analysis let it be stated that manifest thought disorder may have latent emotional components beneath which surface if there is threat from the truth. But if the thought disorder becomes develped to the point of being completely circular and self-referencing it becomes nearly immune from the truth --and in many cases without conscience.
A half-humorous maxim in the mental health professions used to be that the neurotic has doubts about his mental functioning. The psychotic has developed his disorder to the point where he does not. This maxim should be limited in application primarily to thought disorder. The Clintons have got it figured out in a way that they supposedly don't have problems. Other people do.