So Obama gets his second term, and the hopey-changey thing that sprang up in the hearts of America's Republicans is extinguished. If there is one factor from this election from which we in the UK must learn lessons it is campaign costs. As Mary Riddell writes in the Telegraph "Voters were repelled not simply by a campaign in which billions of dollars were ploughed into disseminating negativity, but by the lack of humanity they discerned in a contest that pitted Mr Romney, who did not much like poor people, against the glacial Mr Obama, who did not much like people of any sort."
The effect of those billions of dollars of campaign spending was nil. Few Pepsi drinkers switched to Coke, and just as few Coke drinkers switched to Pepsi. Brand loyalty won out; blacks and hispanics voted Obama, white folk put their cross in Romney's box. They could have saved the money and the result would have been exactly the same.
In winning his first term, Obama allowed his supporters to believe that he was genuinely a candidate springing from the grass roots, that he would restore power and democracy to electors. Four years of bitter disappointment followed. US politics, like UK politics, is still all about a small, powerful, political class exercising power and control from the centre. Another death for that hopey-changey thing.
The calls are coming from our own Coke and Pepsi for more tax money to fund their private clubs, to pay for election campaigning. This US election provides even more evidence, if it were needed, why we should oppose this with every fibre of our ability.