Ross Douthat sums it up perfectly:
The first source, probably, is disappointment with other forms of left-wing politics. A decade ago, the left’s energy was focused on Iraq; in President Obama’s first term, it was divided between his quest for a new New Deal and Occupy Wall Street’s free-form radicalism. But now the antiwar movement is moribund, Occupy has gone the way of the Yippies and it’s been years since the White House proposed a new tax or spending plan that wasn’t D.O.A.
In a twist on Thomas Frank’s What’s the Matter with Kansas, the left’s preoccupation with cultural issues distracts from economic issues, where the left has had much less success.
Precisely because this left’s energy is cultural rather than economic, this tension is unlikely to spur the kind of populist, Elizabeth Warrenesque challenge to Hillary that pundits keep expecting.
Neocon economics isn’t going anywhere. Interest rates still not going up and taxes will remain low, especially with complete GOP control. Dow 20,000 soon.