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Old 02-29-2020, 10:52 PM
Defensive Indifference is offline
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: St. Louis, MO
Posts: 7,671
I just ran across this article from January 2019. It's written by an MD/PhD psychiatrist named John Kruse, who has a book out called Recognizing Adult ADHD: What Donald Trump Can Teach Us About Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. I haven't read the book, but in the article Kruse argues that Trump suffers from "severe ADHD". Kruse says that many people mistakenly conclude that Trump's more bizarre moments are the result of stimulant abuse. Kruse says:
However, a more accurate assessment of the situation would address the evidence that we are examining the putative effects of stimulants not on a “normal” individual but on a man with severe ADHD.

The following constitute an outline of the compelling case for Mr. Trump’s ADHD: He displayed symptoms of ADHD in childhood. Observable behaviors recorded on video suffice for fulfilling the current formal definition of ADHD; we do not need knowledge of his emotional state, motivations, or internal thoughts to diagnose this condition. He pervasively continues to display a broad array of ADHD symptoms. No other disorder comprehensively explains all of these behaviors. The presence of ADHD does not indicate the absence of other mental health problem; actually other mental health issues commonly co-occur with ADHD. He displays many aberrant behaviors unattributable to ADHD. Furthermore, other people with ADHD only resemble Mr. Trump in their shared ADHD traits, we should not stigmatize them with Mr. Trump’s particularly virulent lie-about-the-border, abuse-a-reporter, Adderall-snorter, generalized-disorder form of ADHD.
Somewhat counterintuitively, stimulants such as Adderall help an individual with ADHD appear more "calm" by increasing the person's ability to focus on one task or idea rather than jump from one thing to the next. Thus, according to Kruse, when we see Trump behaving in a manic manner, he is probably undermedicated, and when we see him in his more coherent and collected moments, he is probably benefiting from Adderall or a similar medication. He may well be taking the medication by the wrong routes and at the wrong times, but at least some of the time it's having a positive effect, according to this view.

The article is short, and worth a read. Is it an accurate read on the President's condition? Fuck if I know. To this layperson, Kruse's argument sounds pretty compelling. Trump may well have a multitude of neurological and psychological impairments, in addition to just being an all-around shitbag, but maybe runaway ADHD is the cause of the most visible symptoms.