The hubris of entrenched power long ago set into the parties. Taken together, the parties have reason to think they are "locked in", producing a corporate attitude like General Motors had in the 1960's. Their long history of control over our government has at last overbalanced the sense of caution they once maintained because of ever-upcoming elections.
Control of the legislative branch may shift back and forth in elections. They do worry about that. But that has happened many times. They've learned it will not affect their tandem, seemingly permanent, control of the government. This is the real source of their hubris, especially in the leaderships.
The arrogance of this party hubris has shown itself recently in potentially catastrophic, irresponsible budgetary actions and in gridlock. In these crises the parties have shown little or no concern for competently serving the people or being accountable to them.
The people must come to understand that the one, essential condition for this hubris to become 'locked in' to the parties is this:
THEY HAVE NO REAL COMPETITION.
General Motors only turned around when Japanese automakers started squeezing the fat out of their heads, the fat of complacency that comes with hubris. By the time they finally 'got lean' and competitive they had lost an enormous chunk of their market share.
"Competition" from other American automakers didn't accomplish this result; they were far too similar to GM in their thinking. It took REAL COMPETITION.
This is what must happen to the parties. They will not, indeed CAN not change otherwise.
Hubris produces ghastly, insane effects in every field of human endeavor; from movie-making to manufacturing to military strategy; but especially in governance.
If "We the people" do not stand up and re-establish the Framers' design for our Constitution and bring REAL COMPETITION to all parties, for all time, by redeeming our Right to Nominate, we may lose our country; and lose it soon.