Bennett Gordon summarizes Arthur Herman's article on professional pessimists (the full article isn't online):

The professional pessimist is able to “not only make past successes look like failure, but can present catastrophe as condign punishment for past sins.” Unfortunately for their home countries, these pessimists can convince other people to panic, or to blithely accept a bleak future, making the decline of their civilization unavoidable.

(Photo: Paul J Richards/Getty.)

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