Friday, August 7, 2015

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 3271: Donald Trump, Smiling out of Context and Running as an Independent - Body Language (VIDEO, PHOTOS)

Those who watched the first Republican debate last night were not short-changed. Early on, Moderator and political anchor for Fox News, Bret Baier asked the ten candidates, "... Is there anyone onstage, and can I see hands, who is unwilling tonight to pledge your support to the eventual nominee of the Republican Party - and pledge to not run an independent campaign against that person? Again, we're looking for you to raise your hand now, raise your hand now if you won't make that pledge tonight."

Donald Trump then raises his right hand at 0:33 mark.

Trump then follows by raising both hands in a partial, palms-up display with a facial expression some would call "sheepish". We see in this angle a hint of a mouth smile.

Mr. Trump then makes this expression beginning at 0:39

This partially suppressed smile can be thought of as a form of what is known as "Duping Delight" (Ekman). Trump is taking pleasure in the act of threatening to run as an independent. He is feeling true joy from which cannot hide completely (although he is trying to camouflage it).

At the 0:41 mark, as Baier is clarifying his question, Mr. Trump tilts his head to his right while rotating it slightly to his left. This is not Donald trying being quizzical (or necessarily trying to look it). However this extra head/neck movement at this moment enables a person to better suppress an emotion which is already trying to be hidden. Note that while there is still a slight mouth smile present in this moment, it's now significantly reduced and almost absent.

One crucial nonverbal take-home point illustrated here: When you believe you observe a microexpression, subtle-expression or any slight body language tell being displayed - and then you see a sudden movement or jerk of any part of the body or face - this is often a red flag that there are clandestine thoughts-emotions which the other person does not want to be revealed. Moreover, the way the human short-term memory works, sometimes when you see such a quick and unexpected movement - you may often recall an odd movement or out-of-place expression which had just occurred immediately prior (noticing it only in retrospect, in the short-term rewind-mode of your mind).

In addition, if it's not very obvious to you from Mr. Trump's verbal language during this debate (and of course other statements the candidate has made recently), his nonverbal language removes all doubt. Barring an implosion - which although predicted by many, has yet to happen - Mr. Trump will absolutely run as an independent candidate if he's not the Republican Party's nominee - and in many ways he's already doing so.

See also:

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 3270: Trump at 1st Republican Debate - Donald's Body Language Shows His Cards

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 2855: Hillary Clinton, 2016 Presidential Race and Duping Delight

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 3098: Drew Peterson Alleged to have Hired a Hit Man to Kill Attorney James Glasgow - Peterson's Mug Shot - Contempt vs. Duping Delight? 

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 3073: Russell Westbrook - Execution Interview 

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 3253: John Kasich Formally Announces His Candidacy for President

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 3250: Donald Trump regarding John McCain: "He's no hero" - Body Language Tells us what he really thinks 

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 3256: Katie Holmes on Jimmy Fallon