The first inarguable clue: The same big donors contribute to both parties. Thus, it is evident that they are buying political favors, not differences in ideology. The party in office receives more of course, no matter which one.
The Democrats, seems to us, are there to push affairs in desired directions; the GOP is used to provide cooling off periods when the push has progressed farther than pleases the voters. Witness that NEVER has the GOP reversed any significant Democratic policy short of a related calamity and/or voter discontent.
That’s the system. The public schools prepare the kids, the next generation of voters, to accept as normal what their parents saw as pushing the envelope. And the parents will be bought off with government subsidies using other people’s money. Roosevelt Administration Godfather Harry Hopkins famously put it: “We shall tax and tax, spend and spend and elect and elect.” So it has gone, and another clue has been that, while objecting loudly, the GOP has never significantly imposed financial prudence. Thus as we like to point out, our father’s 1937 new Chevrolet now goes for some $15,000 or more, though in 1937 it cost $750. (You may Google it if you wish).
The Dems push things, supported by the generations of judges and school teachers, in the directions desired by their major donors. Naturally, what would you do? The donors are needed for elections and they won’t donate without a return. (Reality Sucks again)
But masses of voters are threatened by too much change; only the known status quo feels safe. They become uncomfortable, frightened even, when change comes too fast or goes too far. So the GOP is on hand to take over and let things cool down for however long is necessary until the “Progressive” Dems can assume the lead again. Back and forth, good cop, bad cop. A very old political game for keeping real power in the same group of hands.
Mrs. Clinton’s are clearly such hands, though she is supposed to be washed clean somehow by her X chromosomes. Mr. Trump is another, transferring from an influential donor to a candidate for president while espousing the same policies desired by the machine with a few changes to provide a reasonable claim to non-insider status.
We suppose that Mr. Trump was an insurance policy, set to capture the discontented voters if that was necessary; or to be told: “You’re fired!” if one of the old standbys seemed acceptable. Political pros with that much power and wealth at stake aren’t overtaken by chance on their own turf, are they?
This may illuminate the reason George Washington opposed allowing political parties in the new United States. He lost that fight of course. Perhaps, so have we …