In 2016, we witness that very fact play right under our eyes. Bernie Sanders, a candidate for the presidency of the United States, who had never used the “attack approach” in his very long and successful political career, resorted to the smear campaign approach against Hillary Clinton in the bid for the nomination of the Democrat Party. That very fact alone – Bernie resorted to the same approach used by all previous candidates – is a stark marker in the US presidential elections. The thought process behind such approach is very simple: a win is a win irrespective of the approach.
Because the presidential elections are framed as a race (or a fight) between political parties, it is no longer necessary for candidates to spell out any (grand) vision for the country. To make matters worse, members of the media who could serve as check and balance on those who aspire to lead the country have also taken side.