Ultimately, the middle no longer exists in the United States of America. The "middle" has been successfully turned into a dirty word, a liability, a character flaw... treachery. This is the unholy and perhaps accidental (perhaps not) cooperation between the two ideological fringes of politics. They have spun the narrative and indoctrinated millions through decades of alternative facts (both on the right and left), via talk radio, tabloids, websites, podcast, tweets, and channels, into the narrative of "the other". Tribalism was sanctioned, promoted, made mainstream. And then any deviation from Tribalism, compromise, cooperation, center-based politics, take-a-loss on occasion, was vilified and made toxic. Now they have succeeded. No one in either party can win as a centrist, or even get out of their respective primary. It was bound to infect the highest court.
It goes well beyond politics Everything "middle" in the USA is being made to vanish:
- The middle class is under unprecedented assault: all government offers now are tax loopholes for corporations (who are people, unless they say something you don't like, then they are deep-state enemies of foreign actors), or and endless stream of financial handouts to the poor (who are oppressed, unless they don't think in your ideology, then they are yahoos! at best, angry / racist backwoodsmen otherwise).
- Middle of the road housing has disappeared: 79% of new construction is either high-income luxury, or government sponsored housing Companies have decide the middle class is not worth servicing anymore.
- College has only become affordable to the wealthy, to the few than can earn full scholarships, or who can lean on minority programs. The average not too high not too low students is sacrificed at the altar of student debt.
- If you are poor, you'll get your Medicare / Medicaid. If you are wealthy, you can travel anywhere you want or pay here. The middle class gets the most inefficient, expensive, low-return health service in human history.
- If you don't tow 100% the dogma line, left or right, you are canceled out of your gig, career, promotion, or even have people go after you personally beyond the workplace (already utterly unnaceptable in itself).
I'm a very pessimistic because when the well gets so poisoned, it requires total vanquishing of "the other" to achieve stability again. Of course, it's a stability reached only by the thorough elimination of some faction. It's too far down the road of 'de-Americanizing" even "dehumanizing", "the other". It's ingrained in the minds of millions, and there is no turning back.
This is not only a contemporary American phenomenon.
I beg to differ in regards to the Right. The Right hasn't shifted nor moved to the right. In fact we have moved to the left. We have had to accept gay marriage, back in 2008 not even Barack Obama was in favor of Gay marriage. Now we are forced to accept that our children should be thought gender ideology and be allowed if they wish to change their gender. We are merely sticking to our principles and staying put.
The left was center, most of the time during the Clinton years, and part of Obama's first 4 years, after that, the left has moved dramatically whereas the right has had to accept and concede on many things, like I mentioned gay marriage. Yet now, if we don't accept abortion in demand (something Democrats were against in the 90's and early 2000's) we are far Right. The Right has always and consistently believed that Roe was wrong. Nothing there has changed.
Whereas the left is constantly shifting left, to a point that Joe Rogan and many other classical liberals are now considered far right.
The Right is now standing up, no longer willing to let things go, to let things fly, that's it, if we are vocal is because we had enough. For us, its much more than low taxes and no regulation, the left is taking over all institutions, including the nuclear family. That's where most of us, are saying No.
There has always been extreme far right fringe elements, neo nazis, etc, that hasn't ever changed, but the typical right has in fact for the sake of peace and civility accepted many of the things the 'decent' and 'coherent' left has told us they want to be accepted. They told us to leave us alone, we accepted, now they want to go after our children, they want abortion on demand all the way to pregnancy, all sorts of crazy things. The Right instead of moving Right, has drawn a line in the sand and said, that's it.
BTW, Donald Trump wasn't even a far right or even a Right president, he was a center right president. One can argue GWB was more conservative. So no, we haven't moved right.