Forget the Left/Right divide. It's a useful distinction when voting if the voter believes that one or the other party actually believes their rhetoric, but for the most part, the political class is made up of statists from the Right and Left, and the status quo concerns itself with power maintenance -- given this reality, it hardly matters which party is in power. The entire political realm is now in reactionary mode against a small but growing movement to limit government power and end the primacy of politics in America so that Americans can return to productive economic activity and peaceful trade with other countries rather than one ballistic intervention/entanglement after another.
The movement to limit government is coming from a libertarian strain on the Right, represented by Ron and Rand Paul and newly elected GOP candidates who pledged to limit government power and work for the implementation of free market principles. It remains to be seen if the movement can gain enough power to limit State power, but so far they've gotten the attention of establishment elements in both parties and media. Anyone associated with this limited government movement has been severely and constantly attacked and smeared. The goal of the status quo protectors is to marginalize those who are friendly with the limited government movement and to destroy anyone who's dedicated and important to the movement.
The primacy of political means in America has placed the nation at risk as our economy has basically shut-down in uncertainty while government intervenes over and over leaving investors even more uncertain what will come next. Investors, entrepreneurs and business people of all stripes have no way to calculate their costs, and consumers are also uncertain regarding their employment future, so investors don't hire and expand and consumers wait on the big purchases.
The concerned Leftist or Centrist or Left-Libertarian will tell you that economics and taxes are not primary concerns, that we should be concerned with social issues, privacy issues, minority rights issues, environmental issues, and so on. I agree that all the above are important issues, but only a comfortable and prosperous society can afford to address these issues, and when government uses political means to address these issues there's societal division calculated by statists to obtain and maintain power. Most Americans have the same societal goals even though methods might differ, but when government has trashed the economy and basic needs become a concern once again, then higher concerns are put on the back burner. Government has finally intervened to the point that the economy has siezed up. Americans will fight one another over scarce resources through the feeding trough of government -- this is the way statists have set it up, and it leads to conflict. For diversion and a sense of national unity when things get too bad, another war usually works wonders.
Limited government and free marketism lead to free choices and more productive economic activity, an end to central planning, thus less conflict and more charity and compassion to tackle the larger societal concerns. We can deal with our problems without government interventions -- this is the idea statists have to squash, because it's an idea which threatens the political elite. The elite are threatened, and their flailings will only become more extreme. Yes, elections can still work, but they must be significant and revolutionary. We must have revolutionary change, no different from the beginning revolution.