What would a psychiatrist call this? Delusions of grandeur?

US Secretary of State John Kerry, July 8, 2014: “In my travels as secretary of state, I have seen as never before the thirst for American leadership in the world.”

President Barack Obama, May 28, 2014: “Here’s my bottom line, America must always lead on the world stage. If we don’t, no one else will.”

Nicholas Burns, former US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, May 8, 2014: “Where is American power and leadership when the world needs it most?”

Mitt Romney, Republican Party candidate for President, September 13, 2012: “The world needs American leadership. The Middle East needs American leadership and I intend to be a president that provides the leadership that America respects and keep us admired throughout the world.”

Paul Ryan, Congressman, Republican Party candidate for Vice President, September 12, 2012: “We need to be reminded that the world needs American leadership.”

John McCain, Senator, September 9, 2012: “The situation in Syria and elsewhere ‘cries out for American leadership’.”

Hillary Clinton, September 8, 2010: “Let me say it clearly: The United States can, must, and will lead in this new century. Indeed, the complexities and connections of today’s world have yielded a new American Moment — a moment when our global leadership is essential, even if we must often lead in new ways.”

Senator Barack Obama, April 23, 2007: “In the words of President Franklin Roosevelt, we lead the world in battling immediate evils and promoting the ultimate good. I still believe that America is the last, best hope of Earth.”

Gallup poll, 2013; question asked of people in 65 countries: “Which country do you think is the greatest threat to peace in the world today?”

Replies:

  • United States 24%
  • Pakistan 8%
  • China 6%
  • Afghanistan, Iran, Israel, North Korea, each 5%
  • India, Iraq, Japan, each 4%
  • Syria 3%
  • Russia 2%
  • Australia, Germany, Palestinian territories, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, South Korea, UK, each 1%