As an ardent student of history, and I'm 60 years old now, so I've lived a bit of too, it long ago occurred to me the winners, in order to win, must often be much more aggressive than the losers, they must outdo their foe... and so, very often become a more threatening force, a force more powerful than the vanquished, and perhaps a force even more dreadful.
An easy example is how a separatist and seemingly peace-loving USA devolved into a Red baiting/hating nuclear super power obsessed with Communism, to the extent of holding its citizens hostages of terroristic loyalty inquisitions, violently trampling almost word for word everything we had been urged to go to war against.
That's the easy example. It gets lots harder during and after Nixon, but by the reign of Reagan, nothing much was left but exploitation of gullibility and celebration of propaganda.
G.W.Bush & Co. not only declared "Mission Accomplished" apropos to nothing, they deserted the field in the midst of defeat.
Victory became "We're out of here, enjoy the bankrupted mess we created on purpose. Enjoy the spoil and waste of the very system that buried you in debt, debased your financial institutions, embroiled you in foreign conflicts, and will now afflict you like the plague."
Spoils 2012 ~ We were victorious, but it may be that all that can be accomplished in the next four years is to set the table for another Republican victory feast... upon the spoils.
Let's skip the magic tangerine rope, and discuss.
Instances of victors becoming more undesirable than their vanquished foes...
Well, since you have to be way more bad ass than your enemy to win, it's kind of systematic, but historically, getting your ass kicked can make you highly defensive, like Rome... they became hugely victorious, pretty much and for a really long time... against anybody who defeated them. Etruscans, Celts!, Carthaginians, and their own people, etc., everybody.
Then there was the whole thing about so-called christians, which I say because Christians may have been destroyed by the time they emerged 'victoriously' as the new game in town... less competent and much more unsavory (for 1200+ years, or 1600+ if you're still counting, years) than the Romans.
Or, you could just notice how Green Bay Packer fans hate the Chicago Bears more than they love their own team!?
Anyway, I truly believe that we paid a price defeating Romney/Ryan, and through it all, and even well after, even now, facing up to the enemy, their avalanche of hurtful lies, we have been "subdued... like the dyer's hand..." Now let us strive for Unity!