One of the ideas floating around is that the whole Dem vs. Rep fight is just a show match put on to entertain and distract the people from the real powers at be which are controlling the show. I am not sure that this is entirely true, but it does seem that lately so many people are wasting all of their energy on sterile, knee jerk, reflexive, partisan, ideological fights. Instead of actually attacking the real problem (which is corruption by those in power), we exhaust ourselves going 15 rounds in almost robotic like fights. It seems that there are so many people who will automatically oppose something if the other side happens to like it, and automatically support something if their own side endorses it. This is why it is so difficult to have a rational discussion about healthcare because too many people are knee jerk on the issue.
I am not sure that there is an overarching conspiracy to keep people fighting this way, but surely there are interests which benefit by keeping the people distracted and not focused on the real issue-corruption. The Republicans love to keep their base distracted by the issues of homosexuality, abortion, Terry Schiavo, porn, freedom, etc, while they merrily go about robbing the nation. The Democrats also love to get their base all whipped up by global warming, racism, and other PC issues, while they merrily go about bankrupting the country. In America we love to get all obsessed by peccadilloes while ignoring the big problems. We consumed for days about the latest stupidity of Britney Spears, or the gotcha moment when some famous person uttered some truth that was declared to be sinfully politically incorrect (Don Imus). Meanwhile almost no one talks about the vast network of corruption that exists in government and business and which seriously degrades our way of life and is bankrupting the nation and economy.
My advice is for people to wake up, and stop being so reflexively ideological and tribal. Dealing with problems pragmatically and realistically is going to fix them, not ideology. I also believe that most people want the same thing: a good job, a safe neighborhood, a decent standard of living, and institutions that work. We need to come together to fix problems, not tear ourselves apart over ideological issues.