The Human Magnet Syndrome - Excerpts - page 23

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ranked all the U.S. presidents according to their levels of Grandiose Narcissism, which is a subcategory
of Narcissistic Personality Disorder. The Grandiose Narcissist is considered to be flamboyant, assertive,
and interpersonally dominant, have an inflated sense of self, are overconfident in making decisions, and
don’t seem to learn from their mistakes (Riggio, 2015). To understand this narcissism subcategory, the
definition of “grandiosity” should be understood.
“An unrealistic sense of superiority—a sustained view of oneself as better than others that causes the
narcissist to view others with disdain or as inferior—as well as to a sense of uniqueness: the belief that
few others have anything in common with oneself and that one can only be understood by a few or very
special people (Ronningstam, 2005).”
The study revealed that grandiose narcissism in U.S. Presidents has increased in recent decades. This
subcategory, or narcissistic personality disorder, is correlated to a president’s success as well as the lack
thereof, especially in the ethical domain; hence, the double-edged sword. The contradiction was most
notable when considering these presidents were associated with “superior overall greatness” as
measured by historians’ rankings of presidential stature and “positively associated with public
persuasiveness, crisis management, agenda setting and allied behaviors.” In addition, they were able to
win a larger share of the votes and initiated more legislation than less narcissistic presidents. On the
other hand, these same narcissistic presidents were more likely to be the targets of impeachment
resolutions, and engage in unethical behavior.
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