On the political sickbed, society rejuvenates and rediscovers its geist (after gradually losing it by seeking and preserving power). Culture owes its peaks to politically weak ages.
This quote is from Nietzsche's book Menschliches, Allzumenschliches (Human, All Too Human) which he published in 1878. Although his use of the word geist can vary to mean 'intelligence', 'wit', 'mind', and 'spirit'; I think our society's spirit is it's overall demeanor. This quote is very pertinent today.
The current positve American cultural attitude and our difficult but eventual economic recovery caused by an eight-year loss of America's geist would not be possible, if it were not for the previous administration's unhealthy and politically-weakening attempts to seek and preserve power.
In this 131-year-old light, I wish to say: THANK YOU, PRESIDENT BUSH.