Political midlife crisis
A political midlife crisis is a turning point in the fortunes of a governing entity, such as an empire, nation, faction, political party or an international alliance. These events occur after a prolonged golden age of optimism, economic progress, conquest or other success, and typically feature an attack on, or threats toward, a rival power. These attacks are vigorously opposed, end in stalemate or defeat. The political midlife crisis is then followed by an era of existential doubt, pessimism and hesitancy.
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- An earthly paradise is not made by this endless repetition, going round and round like a caged animal, making always the same thing, failing to take the first step on the ascent of rational knowledge.
- The world is suffering from a kind of mental illness which must be diagnosed before it can be cured.
- George Orwell, Essay in Tribune, As I please, 25th November 1946. Orwell, Under Your Nose, ed Sonia Orwell, p 249