American citizens are in the middle of a three hundred year mis understanding with respect to their government. There has always been an assumption that citizens are independent in thoughts and actions. The fact that the constitution gives ordinary people authority over government is taken as assurance that they are in charge. Conservatives talk as if there was a golden age of democracy when the will of the people ruled.
That kind of model would never generate the outcomes we are seeing today. Fantasy Free Economics uses a model that more accurately reflects reality.
Prior to the American Revolution, citizens served governments. After the American Revolution government was defined as serving the people. However not once in all this time have ordinary folk reined in government or taken control. Belief was that they would and life is lived as if that is the way it is.
Instead of monitoring those they elect humans seek out perceived messiahs to represent them. For most of history people have worshiped leaders and treated them as special. Serving kings was normal for a long time and still is in certain places. Politicians run for office not for the good of everyone else but to gain power for themselves and to achieve their personal aspirations.
Clearly humans are hard wired to serve a master and are subject to herd behavior when they are part of groups. Accept this and you never be surprised by bad things that happen in the country. Use the popular model and you will be confounded every step of the way.
Governments form naturally wherever groups aggregate. Governments form as the strong find ways to live off of the efforts of others. Governments offer protection at a very high price. Citizens bargain away freedom in exchange for comfort.
Observers can watch a herd of horses over a period of time and predict what the horses will do next, based on prior behavior. Look at human society the same way and human behavior becomes totally consistent and understandable.