By any political, cultural or economic measure the nations of the West are in total decline. The historic virtues of hard work, free-market thinking and a common cultural integrity as well as religious and historical principles are gone. They have been subverted and replaced by an emphasis on rampant materialism and a consumer driven society that exceeds 70 percent of GNP in addition to private and public debt. Furthermore, a kind of parasitism has laid claim to Western culture by which sports stars, politicians, media darlings and financial scam artists get recognition and exorbitant incomes while real workers find their incomes falling and promised benefits curtailed.
Western society has lost its way. The main reason is the former political leadership of individual European nations and America, as imperfect as they were, have been co-opted and taken over by a corrupt power elite that uses its control over mob rule democracy and massive financial contributions to buy controlling influence over the "representative" governments of most Western nations.
This control has meant the political leadership and central bankers do not represent the citizens or the best interests of the nation at large. Instead, politics works to advance the financial and global governance interests of a small, secretive power elite. This takeover has bankrupted most nation-states and now threatens all existing fiat paper currencies as well as public and private wealth and retirement savings.