Dowd does the diagnosis, plucking a term out of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders or rather plucking a term out of Todd Purdum's Vanity Fair hit-piece:
And so it was, Todd Purdum learned, as he traveled Alaska reporting on Palin for Vanity Fair, that the governor’s erratic and egoistic behavior has been a source of concern for people there.Oh! Lord help us! There were people there! There were several. Oh, my lord. Several! Several told Purdum that they were the sort of jackasses that go flipping through the DSM to leverage their displeasure with a powerful person in their vicinity.
“Several told me, independently of one another,” Purdum writes, “that they had consulted the definition of ‘narcissistic personality disorder’ in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders — ‘a pervasive pattern of grandiosity (in fantasy or behavior), need for admiration, and lack of empathy’ — and thought it fit her perfectly.”
Memo to Purdum, Dowd, and the several people there in Alaska: Everybody who runs for high office will have a lot of check marks on the DSM list of symptoms of "narcissistic personality disorder."
I mean, maybe Fred Thompson didn't, but you see, it's a problem if you don't have these things. Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Joe Biden, etc. etc. — who among them lacks a pervasive pattern of grandiosity, need for admiration, blah blah blah? Oh, but they have empathy, you burble. Bullshit! Watch all the Democrats try to claim the empathy loophole to the narcissistic personality disorder diagnosis. Ha! Bullshit! They all have it. And don't throw your money at a prospective candidate who doesn't. He'll poop out, like Fred.
Memo to the good folks who construct the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual: Consider constructing an official disorder definition that will perfectly fit the kind of people who try to understand human individuals in their vicinity by consulting DSM checklists.
The link goes, of course, to the NYT, so there's no link to the Vanity Fair article upon which Dowd relies so heavily. Link withholding — a symptom on what DSM disorder checklist?