Where is Eastasia when you need her?

I found this post by Kevin Drum to be somewhat fascinating. After explaining the basis of the "Authoritarian Index," Drum writes:
It will come as no surprise that authoritarians tend to vote Republican. What may surprise you, though, is that this has only become true in recent years.

That did surprise me, but it fits with my current bullshit theory of my country, which is this:

We are still recovering from the Cold War. Our institutions, or systems of thought, our political language... virtually everything that is modern America was born out of World War II and the subsequent nuclear standoff with the Soviet Union.*

The utility and meaning of many aspects of our national makeup were called into question at the end of the Cold War, often in ways so subtle that the questions are still unanswered. The messy birth of a new notion of our nation is, as always, disturbing to those with an authoritarian bent. I think what we are witnessing with in the widespread support for a misguided War on Terror** is a concrete, political manifestation of abstract, existential anxiety by voters who are afraid--even more-so than they are of terrorism--of change.


* For our younger readers, the Soviet Union was a large country with many nuclear weapons.

** I take the threat of Violent Islamic fundamentalist extremism seriously. These men want to kill us for no good reason, and should be stopped. What I think is misguided is the approach of the Bush administration to this serious issue.

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