August 18, 2016

In this installment of How The Trump Campaign Bullies Women, we turn to extreme misogynist Michael Cohen, who spent the better part of his interview with CNN's Brianna Keilar exposing himself as a fool and a bully.

After his ridiculous gaslighting episode with Keilar yesterday, Cohen trotted over to Yahoo! News, where he bragged -- yes, BRAGGED -- about how he "unraveled her."

Cohen was apparently "shocked" by the interview. He thought, in his own tiny mind, that he had simply undone her and left her speechless with his question. This is because he did not bother to acknowledge or listen to her the first time, when she answered his question so rapidly it overlapped his own flapping gums.

“I was shocked at the length of the silence as she stumbled to think of an answer,” Cohen told Yahoo News. “And when she did come up with an answer, it was so generic it could have applied to anything.”

He conveniently forgot that he forced her to repeat her answer because he couldn't be bothered to listen the first time. I'm sure he'll blame that on a faulty earpiece, but all of CNN's viewers are going to believe their lyin' eyes (and ears).

This is what bullies do. It is a feature, not a bug of the Trump campaign. Gaslighting is a commonly used tactic to attempt to bully those Trump and his minions do not appreciate. It is entirely intentional. Nothing accidental about it. Here are some common characteristics of gaslighting bullies like Cohen, also defined as "ambient abuse":

  • Deny existence of an event even when presented with evidence (Denial);
  • Deliberately block their victims from source data (Compartmentalizing);
  • Deny behaviors by immediately putting their targets on the defensive (Deflection);
  • Insist that their targets are imagining things (Chronic Invalidation);
  • Shame their targets for expressing very real hurts (Minimization);
  • Insist that others are the source of their poor choices (Blaming);
  • Mentally abuse their targets with criticism veiled as “advice” (Depreciation);
  • (Usually) must have the last word (again, Chronic Invalidation);
  • Force agreement by their targets to accept their false reality (Domination);
  • Engage in gossip in order to hurt and control their targets (Humiliation);
  • Has the ability to “sell ice to an Eskimo” meaning that they are persistent and manipulative enough to convince someone to invest in something that they could receive for free (Insincerity).

It's bad enough to encounter people like this as parents, spouses, or in the workplace. Believe me, I've known them all. Up is down, black is white, there is no grey, and you never said that thing you definitely did say which is documented on video and went viral on the internet.

Yes, it's bad enough to be the unlucky person who has to deal with people like this. But this is how Trump would govern. He would say and do whatever he has to in order to get his way, then deny he did any such thing. And when he was done denying it, his "advisors" like Cohen and Pierson would take to the airwaves to deny he did any such thing.

But again. We have it on video. And as Brianna Keilar said to Yahoo, "My reaction is that people can watch and decide for themselves."

That isn't just true of this video. It's true of the entire campaign. Trump isn't going to gaslight a nation, no matter how hard he and his cabal tries.

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