The contrasts between why Democrats and Republicans are not only nervous, but often beset with anxiety which is palpable (another way of saying it meets the psychiatric definition of an anxiety disorder see below) couldn’t be starker. The headline writer for the Washington Post article by Philip Rucker decided to use the phrase “anxiety high….”

Anxiety high in campaign’s final days as voters prepare to render judgment on Trumpism

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This was the top story this afternoon. “As the midterms roared into their final weekend — with the biggest names in both parties exhorting their followers to vote — tight races across the country were setting the stage for an uncertain, but dramatic, conclusion. Much is on the line as voters will render a nationwide judgment on whether Trumpism is a historic anomaly or a reflection of modern-day America.”
I call what I am feeling “high anxiety” in honor of the Mel Brooks movie of that name starring Brooks, Madeline Kahn, Cloris Leachman, and Harvey Korman though my anxiety and that of many Democrats is no laughing matter. Played for comedic effect in the movie Mel Brooks plays Dr. Richard Thorndyke who suffers from a serious anxiety disorder which has required treatment at the Psycho-Neurotic Institute for the Very, Very Nervous. There is no such healing institute for us to retreat to. Most of us rely on our friends to be a therapeutic support group instead, although I am reading that psychotherapists are treating more and more clients for Trump associated anxiety.
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I wish the anxiety triggered by Trumpism and the prospect for more and worse manifestations of Trumpism was as amusing as a Mel Brooks movie.
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I was a psychotherapist for over 40 years and while I can’t cure myself from the anxiety I am experiencing I can diagnose myself with situationally caused generalized clinical anxiety. Friends who like me who were doing just fine before Trump and now anxious. My friends who were clinically anxious prior to Trump are more anxious. Friends who were depressed before and now also anxious.
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Democrats like me are anxious because to us Trumpism is synonymous with despotism. It is a right wing version of Nazism and Maoism.
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Ardent Trumpers are anxious because they fear everything Trump has told them will happen to their way of life if Democrats have their way. They fear more than mobs of brown-skinned killers invading their neighborhoods although some envision them coming to their towns even as far away as Portland, Oregon where I live.  Under all of this, they fear losing the white privilege, in many cases white male privilege, they have enjoyed all of their lives. They also have been brainwashed into fearing things they don’t have the least bit of understanding of like Venezuela style socialism and Medicare for all.
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I was struck by a comment to the AP Story, Troop deployment creates tense atmosphere on US border, published by Yahoo News. It received 2,944 thumbs up votes and only 412 thumbs down votes.
AO63 yesterday
The correct headline: “Mobs of people approaching US border creates tension, US troops preparing the defense”. I am not a Trump fan, however, there is the right way to do things and the wrong way. Masses of unknown people advancing on a country with the intention of entering any way they can is the wrong way. (moderate, gun owner, Vietnam veteran)
Replies (431)

The author obviously has bought into Trump’s lies and fear mongering as have all the people who up voted the comment.

I only know one Trump supporter well enough to have her tell me about her anxieties. As a retired psychotherapist I can say that her anxieties over everything Trump and Fox News has told her she should be afraid of is at a clinically significant level.
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Trump were more or less psychologically normal, should feel anxious. However, I don’t think Trump experiences anxiety the way the 99.99% of the population who aren’t malignant narcissists do. The prospect of having the Democrats control the House is leading him to react irrationally by amping up his malevolent rhetoric focused on the base that will vote for him regardless, instead of trying to tout the success he’s had in advancing the more traditional Republican agenda such as the economy and two appointment to the Supreme Court.
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To meet the criteria for having a generalized anxiety disorder you have to have had most of these symptoms for at least six months:
  1. Feeling restless, wound-up, or on-edge
  2. Being easily fatigued
  3. Having difficulty concentrating; mind going blank
  4. Being irritable
  5. Having muscle tension
  6. Difficulty controlling feelings of worry
  7. Having sleep problems, such as difficulty falling or staying asleep, restlessness, or unsatisfying sleep

Even if you only have number six if this worry consumes much of your time and leads to obsessing or ruminating over what Trump is doing to the country, I suggest you have high anxiety.

Afterthought:

I’m reminded of the Mel Brooks Broadway play and movie, “The Producers” which was about the production of a play designed to fail called “Springtime for Hitler.” Maybe someday Brooks can write “Springtime for Trump.”

Addendum:

Interview: Mel Brooks: ‘Donald Trump doesn’t scare me. He’s a song-and-dance man’ — One of America’s great comics for the past 60 years, the maker of films Blazing Saddles and The Producers talks about why he can’t take the president seriously – and the White House sidekicks that are no laughing matter

“The whole thing is crazy,” he says. “Trump was never a politician. He was never a senator. I don’t think he was ever president of his high-school class. And then he got himself elected president of the United States. He didn’t expect to win. He didn’t take it seriously. Three hundred million Americans didn’t take it seriously. Now they do.”

Brooks, who views Trump’s anti-Muslim travel ban as poorly planned and poorly executed – his parents came to the US as kids – does not revile the new president in the kneejerk way most movie people do. “Trump doesn’t scare me,” he says. “He’s a song-and-dance man. Pence [the vice-president] and Bannon [Trump’s scheming henchman, a kind of Dick Cheney without the radiant, cherubic charm], those guys make me nervous.” He adds: “We are not talking about Athenian democracy here.”

Sunday, Nov 4, 2018 · 9:30:55 AM Eastern Standard Time · HalBrown

Democrats traumatized by 2016 are having pre-midterms nightmares (Politico)

Despite forecasts of a Democratic House takeover, liberals grappling with ‘PTSD’ are braced for another surprise election disaster.

(Democratic pollster John Anzalone, a Hillary Clinton campaign alumnus who spent election night 2016 in Clinton’s Manhattan war room) said the shock of Donald Trump’s upset victory, contrary to most forecasts, still hangs over many in the party. “There’s some PTSD,” he said.

That is not an exaggeration. A study published last month in the Journal of American College Health found that one quarter of college students experienced “clinically significant” symptoms of trauma from the 2016 election results.

At Vassar College in upstate New York, the college Democrats are moving their results-watching party to a new venue over concerns that revisiting the scene of their 2016 letdown would be too upsetting for some students, according to a member of the group. At Brown University in Rhode Island, the College Democrats have taken the same precaution after experiencing a “collective flashback” to Trump’s victory during a discussion of election night planning.

A September AP/MTV poll found that 61 percent of Democrats between 15 and 34 reported feeling anxious over the midterms, up 22 percentage points from July. (emphasis added)

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