Smart tech people -- especially in America -- are often astoundingly naive and ignorant of the world they live in. Jeff Atwood [of Stack Overflow fame] is a talented nerd, but his views on the nature of his country and its politics border on imbecility.
I assumed that the wheels of American government would turn, and reasonable decisions would be made by reasonable people. Some I would agree with, others I would not agree with, but I could generally trust that the arc of American history inexorably bends toward justice, towards freedom, toward equality. Towards the things that make up the underlying American dream that this country is based on.