The activist philosopher John Ralston Saul traces how we in the West became Walmart societies, with lots of stuff and not much substance.
'Globalism, Saul long argued, weakened nation states in the name of economics, and took away the democratic power of citizens to determine their futures.
"Globalism basically came to an end in about 2000, and we had five to ten years in a vacuum, before we were hit by a moving truck. The financial crisis … was not a crisis in and of itself, it came out of the earlier crisis, the failure of globalism."
'............. Saul mostly blames the people who filled the void [for the GFC], the people who called themselves neo-classical or neo-liberal economists and who he calls neo-conservatives. After the crisis of the 1970s, their views — advocacy of free trade, open markets, privatisation and deregulation, smaller government and a bigger role for the private sector —quickly came to dominate political thought. He calls that idea of a deregulated international marketplace, in which goods and finance travel far more easily across borders than do people, "globalism".
So complete was the hegemony of its advocates, says Saul, that ultimately "everyone, whether they are Labor or Liberal or social democrat or whatever … adopted their language."'