"No man is more unhappy than he who never faces adversity, for he never gets a chance to prove himself."
“Irrationality, so far from being an obstacle, has historically led to peace, security and strength, and is indispensable to society: it is rational institutions— republics, elective monarchies, democracies, associations founded on the enlightened principles of free love—that collapse soonest; authoritarian churches, hereditary monarchies and aristocracies, traditional forms of life, like the highly irrational institution of the family, founded on lifelong marriage—it is they that persist.”
— Isaiah Berlin, 1973
Remus, author of excellent weekly blog The Woodpile Report, has a clear view of the socio-political environment of USA 2016:
"There's nothing in any of this for sincere people of good will. The opportunity for live and let live has come and gone. Stay away from crowds."
And he's right. The environment on the street is only going to get more hostile from here. The narrative structures necessary to sow sufficient doubts about the results of the election are being established. Thence comes the Great National Emergency.
Apres moi, la deluge.
"When, in 1936, General Emilio Mola announced that he would capture Madrid because he had four columns outside the city and a fifth column of sympathizers within, the world pounced on the phrase with the eagerness of a man who has been groping for an important word. The world might better have been stunned as by a tocsin of calamity. For what Mola had done was to indicate the dimension of treason in our time... Other ages have their individual traitors... But in the 20th century, for the first time, men banded together by millions in movements like Fascism and Communism, dedicated to the purpose of betraying the institutions they lived under. In the 20th century, treason became a vocation whose modern form was specifically a treason of ideas."
Whittaker Chambers, Witness
"I'm sure most, if not all of you know that most Arab armies are crap. But, when Arabs fight, in accordance with their own traditions, which is irregular light cavalry warfare, they've proven quite good at it. We call it terrorism. The passing way of war always calls the arriving way of war terrorism. To the knights on horseback, musketeers were terrorists. There were actually rules ordering their eyes to be put out if they were captured."
-William S. Lind, The Four Generations of Modern War
Designating an enemy as "terrorists", no matter how brutal and wicked they are, is really a protest among the other players that such-and-such is not playing by the rules. I think it's also a signal of weakness or inability to cope with a defection from the rules. But you can't take your ball and go home in geopolitics. Peace is a goal, but war is a fact. And the rules of the dar-al-harb are written by the aggressor. The rules of Pax Americana only stood while we were able to enforce them. Those days ended in 'Nam.
We endanger ourselves when we can't handle being engaged other than by our own rules. This is why we have borders, actually, or one reason. Familial, social, and national. Borders tell us what rules apply, and how we can expect to be engaged.