The implications of this chart are staggering....
This might be one:
There is a strong line of reasoning that the USSR collapsed when the nomenklatura (bureaucratic elites, the most important people in a government run economy) decided to work against the state. In short, the non-financial benefits of being in the bureaucracy were in decline as attempts were made to reform the Soviet system. So, when a window of opportunity arrived (the attempt to privatize sectors of the economy to improve economic performance), they jumped at it. A trickle of privatization turned into a flood as the nomenklatura looted the state of anything/everything of value.
I think that this is a more plausible reason for the decline of the USSR than anything else that I've heard.
How the mechanism that collapsed the USSR (per the above) applies to the US has yet to be seen. But, as the chart above shows us, something very, very wrong is in motion. It goes beyond Republican/Democrat, conservative/liberal, public/private, and all of the common methods of division or debate. It's systemic.