The financial crisis has had the effect of drastically increasing the ideological polarization in America to the point where a Second Civil War may be unavoidable. America has always been divided ideologically, but neither side had too much to lose. Elections only marginally changed the direction of America, and hence, the losing side was willing to accept defeat and work for victory in the next election.
However, both sides now view the status quo as being untenable, and neither side will be content to accept marginal changes in the status quo. Consequently, each side of the ideological spectrum has an incentive to win every election until the opposing sides' ideological view has been vanquished. This ideological chasm may be too great, and the incentive to avoid being on the losing side may be so strong that a second American Civil War may become unavoidable.