A polity blinded by rage

In this column for the FT I discuss anger in US politics:

Historically, the US has both accommodated and benefited from a remarkable degree of cultural pluralism - with sufficient civic tolerance, mutual (if sometimes grudging) respect and unashamed patriotism to bind the whole together. Now, more than ever, the instinct of politicians and their energised supporters is to divide. Mr Obama seemed to promise a corrective, but that hope is fading. Old and new media, obsessed with gladiatorial politics, offer no remedy. They either take sides or act as fight promoters; in any event they worsen the polarisation and leave the centre unserved. The internet's echo chambers stir brainless anger and push the poles still further apart.