Francis Fukuyama began his watershed The End of History and the Last Man with a definition of liberal democracy: it describes democracies that are centered around the facilitative principle of providing civil rights and equality to their citizens, which necessarily includes economic and consumer freedoms as well as political and civil ones.
Much like thinkers before him, Fukuyama hit on an important principle: no ideology is static. Whatever we implement today leads to something tomorrow that is implicated by the nature of our ideology. For example, in democracy, the idea that individuals are free leads to the idea of equality so all individuals are free, then the idea of consumerism, then the idea of socialism in order to subsidize these individuals in their free choices even if those choices are not supportable by the economy.
Don’t tell the big media “conservatives,” but the same economic freedom that leads to consumerism also leads to welfare. For people to be truly free and equal, they need the nanny state to step in and make sure that they don’t face the consequences of their actions. You might call this an anti-reality bias, as it is biased against results and biased in favor of feelings, emotions, judgments and desires of human beings.
What people don’t like to admit is that democracy tends toward this bias. If we assume that everyone is equal, and everyone can do whatever they want and society will facilitate it, there is only one type of society this can lead toward: the bazaar, or a permissive, rule-less, chaotic and unstructured system tied together only by commerce and the shared belief in ideology. If you can imagine a fusion between the Soviet Union and an American shopping mall, this is the inevitable end result of democracy.
The underlying reason for this is that democracy is a zero-sum game. In theory, we all vote for what we want, and the end result is whatever is most popular. However, this denies that fact that for one person to get what they want means that another is excluded from what they want. The only way around this thought is that pluralism allows us each to do whatever we want, so we can have what we want and what the other guy wants.
This is a fallacy because people do not want individual things unless they are pluralists; they want types of civilization, types of places to live, types of lives (“lifestyles,” in the odious magazine parlance) and types of futures. These are not determined on the individual level. They are determined by civilization, or people working together according to common values and goals. This means that when one person gets their ideal type of civilization, it excludes what everyone else wants. And vice-versa.
As a result, democracies tend toward only one direction: compromise, which means pluralism or many little “parallel societies” existing within one, and in order to support that, the notion of equality and thus, liberalism/leftism in its many forms. Even more disturbing is that liberalism itself is a continuum, so that if a society starts at a moderate form it will inevitably drift toward one of the two extremes, a total managed state (Communism) or un-state (anarchism).
Permissiveness occurs wherever pluralism goes, and it obliterates the ability of a nation to choose any kind of social standard. What results is the bazaar, with its minimal standards for behavior, and a cult of compassion and “open-mindedness” that rewards acceptance/tolerance of any behavior no matter how bizarre, so long as it is deviant enough to warrant protection and thus confer upon its acceptors the role of facilitator of pluralism.
The only real problem with this process is that it un-does civilization itself. There is no longer any common goal or purpose, other than supporting the notion of pluralism and commerce. Like a shopping mall, the society thus exists only for as long as it can profit off of its own citizens, and when any real challenges arise, it knuckles under and runs away to something more cash money deliverable.
If you find yourself wondering why our civilization is always in disarray, yet “powerful” economically and militarily, this is because we live in an anti-civilization. The consumers demand no rules, thus equality, thus democracy, and this creates a giant financial state that supports them for so long as it is convenient. Eventually the civilization collapses, and the only people concerned are those who recognize what greater civilization might have been in its place instead.