Our political chickens are coming home to roost. In virtually all areas of American life—from police to pregnancy—we are seeing the effects of forty years of ascendent Republican ideology working without restraint in every facet of American society—for the great ill.
Americans have wanted—and voted in—two fundamentally contradictory things: more government service and benefits, and lower taxes. That dissonance has produced a deadlocked government, where Democrats and Republicans keep getting elected by their partisans, and cannot reconcile because they have to appease their bases. The split in government is really the split of the American people, and the lower tax cuts side has always dominated, always won, while the more government services side has been maintained because its absence is political suicide. Thus, you get a broken, declining, country that ignores ever increasing income inequality because its poorer people can't recognize the irony in voting against their own self-interest, while its middle class baby boomers want their government cake and lower taxes eating it too. The Republican focus on values voting, on culture wars, as a cover to economically rape the country, and as a perpetual power source to get into office, has been a smashing success.
So we end up regressing to the early 20th century, where the robber barons controlled all, people had fewer rights, and The New Deal and Great Society never happened. As that population is dying, will the future voters of America remember those programs' benefits? It seems they don't do so now.
It's not the elected representatives fault. They're just doing what they get elected for. Not their fault that people want two paradoxical things at the same time, or that they aren't educated enough on history and policy not to believe Republican myths and marketing. The Monsters on K Street have always been us.