Body Language Analysis №4139: Donald Trump, the Tax Bill will “Cost Me a Fortune” — Nonverbal and Emotional Intelligence (VIDEO, PHOTOS)
On Wednesday 29 November 2017 President Trump gave a speech in St. Charles, Missouri. Among other issues, he spoke about the current proposed tax bill. What follows is a partial nonverbal analysis of a key portion of his speech.
Beginning at 1:21, President Trump continues, “… So right now, America’s tax code is a total, dysfunctional, mess. The current system has cost our nation, millions of American jobs, trillions and trillions of dollars, and billions of hours wasted on paperwork and compliance. It is riddled with loopholes that let some special interests — including myself in all fairness, it’s going to cost me a fortune, this thing — believe me — belief, this is — not good for me Ω. Me, it’s not so -, I have some very wealthy friends…”
As President Trump speaks the words, “… myself in all fairness, it’s going to cost me a fortune, this thing …” he displays a Lip Curl. Simultaneous he speaks will shallow breaths — with the anterior (front portion) of his nose and mouth. His voice is therefore momentarily nasal-sounding. This nonverbal-affectation cluster is highly indicative of Sarcasm and False Bravado.
During 1:47, as he says, “… believe me …”, the President’s mouth briefly becomes very asymmetrical — favoring his right side.
A second later, during 1:48, as he says, “… belief …”, Donald Trump again speaks out of the right side of his mouth — although it’s not quite as pronounced. Curiously, he seems to have cut himself off/misspoken (saying, “belief” rather than, “believe me”) — thus his nonverbal asymmetry was also mirrored with similar truncation.
This statement analysis/paralanguage axiom stands on its own: When a person says, “believe me” (particularly when they repeat themselves), with high probability, they’re lying.
A sudden asymmetrical mouth configuration is classic for both Deception and False Bravado.
The appearance of Trump’s “Believe me” and “belief” — both coincident with his repeated one-side mouth speaking — indicates with very high probability President Trump was lying.
During 1:50, at the end of his statement, “… this is not good for me” as he says “me” and for a split second after (connoted by Ω), he touches himself on both sides of his chest. This gesture, because he only is using the tips of his fingers, is correlated with a low degree of sincerity.
Moreover, Trump touches his chest, with all probability, with only the tips of the three middle digits — not his pinky or his thumbs. His thumbs are — in a classic tell — pulling/pointing away from his chest.
Conversely, a high sincerity quotient is indicated with the touching of the full palm(s) to the chest (a full “palmar touch”) — as well as the palmar surfaces of all the digits.
Notice too, how in the third and fourth pictures above, Trump’s eyes are momentarily closed. Prolonged and/or frequent blinking is an anxiety indicator. It’s crucial that these phenomena occur during his declarative statements. Blinking frequently and/or in a prolonged fashion is also a form of diminished eye contact. Suddenly decreasing eye contact is correlated with lying.
Summary: Based on his nonverbal, verbal, and paralanguage/statement analysis behavior during this segment of President Trump’s recent speech — with very high probability he is being deceptive when he claims the proposed tax plan would cost him a fortune.
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This post and the associated website serve as reference sources for the art and science of Body Language/Nonverbal Communication. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author. In an effort to be both practical and academic, many examples from/of varied cultures, politicians, professional athletes, legal cases, public figures, etc., are cited in order to teach and illustrate both the interpretation of others’ body language as well as the projection of one’s own nonverbal skills in many different contexts — not to advance any political, religious or other agenda.