I Think This is the Way Trump Thought a Mueller Interview would go Down

MUELLER: Good morning, Mr. President.

TRUMP: Good morning.

MUELLER: Did you collude with the Russians?

TRUMP: No. No collusion. There was no colluding. Nobody colluded with anybody. There was never any collusion.

MUELLER: Did you intend to obstruct justice when you fired FBI Director Comey?

TRUMP: No. There was no obstruction. I had no intent to obstruct anything. Comey was a showboat. He was a grandstander.

MUELLER: But, Mr. President, what about the Lester Holt interview where you said, . . .

TRUMP: That’s NBC. You should watch Fox. NBC is fake news. I get my news from FOX. Hannity reported that . . .

MUELLER: Forget what Hannity reported. The issue is what you said. You told Lester Holt . . .

TRUMP: No, there was no obstruction. Forget about what I told Lester Holt. There was no obstruction. No obstructing.

MUELLER: Thank you for that firm denial. Let’s move on. As to the meeting in Trump Tower . . .

TRUMP: Have you seen Trump Tower? It’s one of the finest properties in Manhattan.


Can You Believe this Georgetown Psychiatrist Actually Responded to my Crazy email?

Mr. Freedman, I am not taking new patients at this time. Best of luck.

Matthew Biel, M.D., M.Sc.
Division Chief, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
MedStar Georgetown University Hospital
Associate Professor of Clinical Psychiatry and Pediatrics
Georgetown University School of Medicine
2115 Wisconsin Ave NW, Suite 200
Washington, DC 20007
Phone: 202-944-5400
Fax: 202-944-5404
Email: mgb33@georgetown.edu

Dr. Biel:

I am an intellectually gifted individual with serious character pathology. I believe that a therapist could greatly add to his skills set by working with me. I offer to be a patient for a minimal fee of $20 per session. The following link is a summary of 12 of my recent therapy sessions at the McClendon Center in Washington, DC.


Gary Freedman
Washington, DC

email Message to Josefin Dolsten at The Forward

Ms. Dolsten:

I enjoyed your article “Why ‘Call Me By Your Name’ is such a Jewish movie.” May I interest you to take a look at an unusual book of Jewish interest I wrote — a kind of novel in verse — about immigrant Iranian Jews living in Manhattan? It is called The Emerald Archive. Like Andre Aciman’s Jews, the Jews of The Emerald Archive are also “Jews of discretion.” The text of the book is at the link below:



Gary Freedman
Washington, DC


The Inscrutable Ben Shirazi

Ben Shirazi rarely confided his innermost thoughts to his family,

friends, and colleagues; at meetings he refused to take notes.

There were times when Ben seemed to delight in being

unreadable, like a book in a dead language written in

an undecipherable script. He delighted in his colleagues’ rampant speculation

about whether he’d retire when he reached sixty. Perhaps his

reluctance to show emotion or reveal his inner feelings stemmed

from the inbred defensiveness of his forbears who lived for

generations as “Jews of Discretion” in Muslim Iran, where one

person simply knew the other and knew him beyond question.

Paraphrases from the biography The Last 100 Days: FDR at War and at Peace and the article “An André Aciman Movie?” by Jake Marmer.

The Inner Portrait Gallery

Oscar sometimes retreated to an inner gallery of portraits of

his mother — portraits that captured moments of joy and despair,

of longing and  dissatisfaction.  In some blighted sons, those who

had turned away from mother,  there exists in their minds

nevertheless a beautiful likeness of mother, but one who was

felt to be a picture of her only, not her

real self. The real mother was felt to be unattractive—

a dreaded person, really.  The beautiful likeness had been dislocated

from the real  mother  but had never been relinquished,  and

played a  great part in the pathways of their desires.


Paraphrases from the paper “Love, Guilt and Reparation” by Melanie Klein.

If You Don’t Get It, You Don’t Get It!

The Armand Hammer Foundation

To Viktor Hammer:

Mr. Hammer:

May I interest you to take a look at an unusual book — a kind of novel in verse — that I wrote titled The Emerald Archive. One of the characters is the gallery owner Perry Rubenstein. I am a great admirer of the writer Andre Aciman, by the way.

The text is at the link below:


Gary Freedman
Washington, DC

Mr. Hammer’s great-grandfather, the oil tycoon, Dr. Armand Hammer, was a friend of Lenin’s!! And now his brother, Armie, stars in a gay movie. What did I tell you about the Russian Revolution!!


How Naive Is Earl? Apparently He Never Studied History with Dr. Hirshfield

People say: “He claims that he came from a disturbed, dysfunctional family.  He says that his family was the cause of his problems.  But his sister and brother-in-law are delightful people.  His sister is intelligent, witty and charming.  His brother-in-law has a successful business.  They have two wonderful children.   Why wasn’t his sister adversely affected by this supposedly disturbed, dysfunctional family?”

Remote Association

In 1943 Wagner’s daughter-in-law, Winifred Wagner, staged a model production of Die Meistersinger von Nurnberg at the Wagner Festival in Bayreuth, Germany.  The production was generously funded by the German government.  High-ranking Nazis would be in attendance.   Though Hitler himself appears to have been busy with other matters.  The German government spared no expense in subsidizing the performances.  The finest musicians were hired; the best best singers in Germany starred in the leading roles.  The German government wanted to showcase German culture and this Festival would be the vehicle.   Historically, at these festivals a number of Wagner’s operas would be performed.  At this festival, the only opera to be performed throughout the month of August would be this model production of Die Meistersinger.

What else was going on in Germany in August 1943?  What were the other matters that preoccupied Hitler in August 1943?

August 2
Jewish prisoners revolt at the Treblinka killing center. Although around 200 prisoners escape, the members of the SS Special Detachment Treblinka, with support from locally stationed German Gendarmerie and military units, capture and kill most of those who attempted to escape. SS authorities supervise a small detachment of prisoners as they dismantle the camp and remove all remaining traces of its existence. After the killing center is dismantled in November 1943, Special Detachment Treblinka personnel shoot the members of this Jewish labor detachment.

August 6-September
German authorities deport about 8,000 Vilna (Wilno; Vilnius) Jews to camps in Estonia.

August 15-28
After initial agreement to deport Jews from the Romanian provinces, Wallachia and Moldavia, the government of Marshall Ion Antonescu backs away from the agreement and refuses to deport Jews from Romania to the custody of the Germans.

August 16
German SS and police units and their auxiliaries begin the final liquidation of the Bialystok ghetto. By August 21, German authorities have deported the remaining 40,000 Jews from the ghetto to killing centers or forced-labor camps in the Generalgouvernement.

Thought Experiment: A Question for Freudian Analysts


In my work with psychotherapists I sometimes feel like a dissident in a totalitarian regime. I feel that I am censored and cajoled into talking about certain things and refraining from talking about other things. I saw an analyst in 1990. When I tried to talk about my family, he said to me: “What do you want me to do, condemn you family?” When I tried to talk about anti-Semitism he stopped me. When I tried to talk about my paranoid constructions he became heated and cut me off. But, in all fairness, I’ve  had these issues with most of my therapists. I feel a special sensitivity about the sensation of being censored — of being unable fully to make my private world public. My blog provides a powerful sense of freedom for me, a place where I can say anything (or almost anything) and no one can reply: Stop!

I recently hit upon a thought experiment that intrigues me. Let’s say that I were to keep a private journal in which I wrote about all my thoughts, all of my fanciful ideas: my paranoid constructions, my thoughts about my family, my intellectualizations, every grandiose and paranoid idea imaginable: things that typically get censored in therapy.

Let’s say also that my therapists tape record my sessions and prepare transcripts of my sessions, sessions whose content reflects the censoring activities of the therapists.

So we now have two documents: a private journal that records all my thoughts, including those censored by therapists; and a set of transcripts of my therapy sessions that reflect the censorship of the therapist.

Now, let’s say there is a serial killer on the loose. He has killed ten people so far and the FBI is desperate to apprehend him. The FBI has come into possession of two documents: a private journal by an unidentified subject and a set of transcripts of that individual’s therapy sessions. The FBI sends these documents to the Bureau’s Behavioral Analysis Unit in hopes that the BAU can create a personality profile of the unidentified subject — clues to his identity, motivations, fears, etc.

Now, I ask you — Which document would be more valuable to the BAU: the private journal that recorded all of the subject’s thoughts, perceptions, ideas about his family, paranoid fantasies, grandiose ideas, notions about anti-Semitism, ideas about being under surveillance, ideas about former coworkers? or the transcripts of the individual’s therapy sessions whose contents reflect, in large measure, the censorship agenda of the therapist?

What does that tell you about psychotherapy? Is it in reality a search for truth, a search for identity — or rather a brainwashing tool? One wonders.

The FBI is asking: Who is this unidentified subject? The therapist is thinking: How can I change this person?

Let’s say that the patient has severe introjective pathology: he is obsessed with issues of identity and self-definition, he is obsessed (ironically, like Oedipus himself!) with the question: Who am I? Yes, the introjective patient is concerned with the question, “Who am I?” and not “How can you change me?” The introjective patient (like the FBI) is concerned with identity and not change.

Perhaps this explains to some degree my interest in Bion. Bion said that the purpose of analysis ultimately is the search for truth and not a way of changing a person. For Bion, change emerges out of the search for truth: for Bion change is, as the biochemists say, a by product.