The appeals of the social systems transcend the rationalistic themes and boundaries Caute proposed. The most striking paradox in the political judgment of intellectuals involves the contrast between their views of their own society and of those they designate—from time to time—as lands of promise or historical fulfillment. The apparent growth of alienation in the United States might have also been a reflection of the growing number of people ready to claim intellectual status and the stances associated with it. It was precisely this need for new alternatives—along with certain historical facts and new information increasingly difficult to ignore—that explains why the Western intellectuals' attachment to the Soviet model-exemplar was relinquished with the passage of time. The Utopian susceptibilities of contemporary Western intellectuals are part of a long-standing tradition of seeking heaven on earth which took more specific form when the belief in a heavenly heaven, as it were, began to lose its hold on the imagination of Western man.