I feel like most people know what kind of country we are. They know we're mean and paralyzed and small. They know we've talked ourselves into being unable to move, and either they can't see how we can get out of it, or they don't care if we ever do.
This is how it works: You start out just not doing one thing because it's too hard, and pretty soon you can't do anything. We are a country that cannot button our shirt in the morning because we actually cannot conceive of the process by which we would do that, no matter how many shots of brandy we take to steady our nerves.
This election will mean different things to different people. To me, it will show us just how hard people are willing to fight for those things that defined America from 1929 to 2001. Win or tie, and there are still some things left of the old consensus, that cultural belief that we were on an bending arc towards a more perfect union. Lose, and the whole modern political complexion of the country will be forever changed, and the march to pre-1929 philosophies, so long consigned to the dustbin of history, will continue nearly unopposed.