Articles such as this that place blame the elected suffer the lack of responsibility that is the core of the problems. Try to get an honest person elected, and see how far you get. Elections in this country are no more than a popularity contest, an overly complicated beauty pageant. The winner? The one whose flashy smile best matches their swim suite. This was no more apparent than media's hounding of Sara Palin, not for her IQ, or her ingenuity or leadership, but for the quality and cost of her suits.
It doesn't start or end at the top. The last presidential election, I tried to dedicate my skills and experience in IT to help the local 'support our candidate' team. Of course, the person in charge of the local office ran a web design company they wanted to advertise using our candidates page, so my offer went unheard. I did canvas the streets, and speak to whoever would listen. But this was certainly not the best use of my time considering the web and email systems for the office were rolled out 1 week prior to the election. This kind of in-fighting and "where's mine" attitude has built the current situation, not the leaders who take advantage of the end result.