I would say so, but then again I’m not a psychiatrist…
Consider the symptoms: Bouts of grandiosity, megalomania, irritability, impulsiveness, spending sprees …
One possibility is that Newt suffers, and benefits from, the milder affliction of hypomania. In his 2005 book The Hypomanic Edge: The Link Between (a Little) Craziness and (a Lot of) Success in America , John D. Gartner, a Johns Hopkins psychiatrist, argues that this form of extreme optimism explains the achievements of everyone from Christopher Columbus to Andrew Carnegie. Gartner writes: “Hypomanics are brimming with infectious energy, irrational confidence, and really big ideas. They think, talk, move, and make decisions quickly. Anyone who slows them down with questions ‘just doesn’t get it.’” Hypomanics lack discipline, act on impulse, suffer from over-confidence, and often lack judgment.
Sound like anyone you’ve seen on Fox News recently? Several years ago, Gartner himself described Gingrich as “our last great hypomanic figure.” There is, however, no clear boundary between the productive state of hypomania andCharlie Sheen. Often, Gingrich sounds closer to the latter. When in an ebullient mood, he grabs the nearest microphone and begins propounding the theory that only he can save the world from imminent destruction. Sometimes Gingrich is leading a revolution. Sometimes he’s preventing one. It doesn’t matter. Only he can do it.
The most vivid image of Newt’s Messiah complex came out of the GOPAC scandal . For those too young to remember, Gingrich gained control of this murky non-profit in 1986 and turned it into a promotional vehicle-cum-political slush fund. It was an earlier incarnation of Newt Inc . GOPAC ran into trouble raising tax-deductible money to fund a nominally academic course called “Renewing American Civilization,” which Gingrich taught at the School of Business Administration at Kennesaw State College, in Kennesaw, Georgia. The House Ethics Committee investigated and criticized Gingrich for, more or less, lack of discipline, acting on impulse, and lack of judgment. He was fined $300,000 for lying to Congress about various matters. In its final report, the Ethics Committee appended internal GOPAC documents, including some of Newt’s handwritten notes from the period leading up to his big 1994 victory.
- Chelsea Handler to Newt Gingrich ‘Go F**** Yourself’ (bazaardaily.com)
- Peter Dreier: Who Will Ask Gingrich About His Congressional Pork-Barreling at the Next GOP Debate? (huffingtonpost.com)
- Newt Gingrich Makes Dumb Marriage Pledge (mykeystrokes.com)
- WATCH: Scarborough Praises Beck, Bashes Gingrich (huffingtonpost.com)
- Newt Gingrich: Hospital Divorce Story Is A Lie, Except That It Isn’t (mykeystrokes.com)
- Huff TV: WATCH: Arianna, Al Franken Discuss Newt Gingrich On ‘Politically Incorrect’ (huffingtonpost.com)
- Which Crazy Celebrity Endorsed Newt Gingrich? (q104.radio.com)
- Serial Wife-Leaver Newt Gingrich Vows to Defend Marriage [Politics] (jezebel.com)
- Joe Lieberman To Newt Gingrich: Get Real (huffingtonpost.com)