From Kevin Williamson at National Review, The March of the New American Leninists:
For Vladimir Lenin, a revolution required three preconditions: The masses had to be unwilling to accept the status quo, the ruling class had to be unable to enforce the status quo, and, as a result of the first two, there had to be an outbreak of political fervor and activity among the masses. Once these conditions were satisfied, Lenin would be ready to move on to the question of revolutionary instruments, which in his case were war, terror, and executions.
(It is worth keeping in mind that Bolsheviks wanted to outlaw capital punishment, and Lenin overruled them: “How can you make a revolution without executions?”)
One of those, which we can see emerging in the United States on both sides of the political aisle, involves a question of loyalty. Loyalty is very much on the minds of American political partisans, with each side denouncing the other as “traitors” and “seditionists” and “insurrectionists” and the like. If you are not used to the intellectual compartmentalization required of an American politician, it can be jarring to hear, e.g., Senator Sanders demanding “revolution” at 10 a.m. and denouncing “insurrection” at 10:15 a.m
When some significant share of citizens feel themselves more closely identified with a particular politician than with the constitutional order per se, then you have the conditions for a coup d’état and a caudillo; when some significant share of citizens feel themselves more closely identified with a party or a movement than with the constitutional order per se, then you have the conditions for a more broad-based revolution. The first gets you an Augusto Pinochet or a Francisco Franco, and the second gets you a Russian Revolution or a French Revolution — both of which eventually produced caudillos of their own, meaning that they ended up in much the same place.
The American Revolution was less of a revolution than a civil war and a war for independence. They did not seek to overthrow the established English order. It began as a fight for their rights as British citizens and ended with “thanks, but we will just go it alone.” This was an option available as a colony, but not as a fight within the motherland.
The only loyalty we require is to The Constitution.