The perverse thrill of chaotic times

Now, as Donald J. Trump helms arguably the most turbulent presidency since Richard M. Nixon’s, the nation is entering an era of volatility unseen for decades (post-9/11 excepted). And for some people (even the president’s opponents), the climate of crisis inspires a perverse thrill.

It has been posited that a number of Trump voters supported him out of an anarchic desire to destroy a system that has not worked for them, or even just to see what would happen with the nuclear codes (or, as an Onion video headline in 2011 astutely put it, “Morbid Curiosity Leading Many Voters to Support Palin”). I doubt many liberals have similar inclinations.

Nevertheless, the atmosphere of Trumpian turmoil makes a lot of people across the political spectrum feel as though they are part of something bigger than themselves.