From The Terror of Neoliberalism: Authoritarianism and the Eclipse of Democracy, by Henry A. Giroux:
We live at a time when the conflation of private interests, empire building, and evangelical fundamentalism brings into question the very nature, if not existence, of the democratic process. Under the reign of neoliberalism, capital and wealth have been largely distributed upward while civic virtue has been undermined by a slavish celebration of the free market as the model for organizing all facets of everyday life. Political culture has been increasingly depoliticized as collective life is organized around the modalities of privatization, deregulation, and commercialization…Under attack is the social contract with its emphasis on enlarging the public good and expanding social provisions- such as access to adequate health care, housing, employment, public transportation, and education- which provided a limited though important safety net and a set of conditions upon which deomcracy could be experienced and critical citizenship engaged, It has been replaced with a notion of national security based on fear, surveillance, and control rather than on a culture of shared responsibility. Self-reflection and collective empowerment, now reduced to self-promotion and self-interest, are legitimated by a new and ruthless social Darwinism played out nightly on network television as a metaphor for the “naturalness” of downsizing, the celebration of hyper-masculinity, and the promotion of a war of all against all over even most limited notions of solidarity and collective struggle…(p. xv).