The Collapse of Western Civilization, Part II

Posted on March 20, 2018 by Robert Ringer


It has often been said that rampant drug use, the glorification of abortion, violent movies and video games, pick-and-choose gender identification, sanctuary cities, and other modern ills are responsible for the destruction of Western civilization.  But are they?  Not really.  They are symptoms, not causes.

Symptoms are just manifestations of an underlying disorder and are clearly visible to everyone.  A cause, however, is subtle in nature, so much so that it’s hidden from the mind of the average low-information person who relies on the media to do his thinking for him.

Even “alarmists” among us do not really grasp the cause of the collapse of Western civilization.  Much to the delight of the Fake News Media, they repeatedly predict a coming revolution, but such a revolution never seems to make its appearance.

And with good reason — the revolution has already arrived!  But unlike the collapse, which is still in progress, the revolution is over.

How is possible that we had a revolution and few people even noticed it?  Because it happened while Americans were watching Monday Night Football, guzzling their Miller Lites, and feeding their arteries Big Macs and fries.  They simply ignored the whole event, because to comprehend it would have required thinking, and thinking takes effort.

In all fairness, however, it was easy to ignore, because it was a quiet revolution.  To be more specific, it was a quiet moral revolution.  And it was the success of that moral revolution that triggered the demise of the Western world.

In a very literal sense, the ethical standards of a civilization constitute its moral foundation.  When I use the word moral, I’m talking about a standard of behavior that forms a system of ethics, i.e., a culture’s principles of conduct.

Thus, when the moral foundation of a civilization is destroyed, the civilization collapses.  The civilization may disappear entirely or a new civilization, with a new system of ethics, may displace the fallen one.

The moral revolution that shook the foundations of Western civilization involved a 180‑degree shift in the generally accepted standard of behavior for the people of Western nations.  Gradually, some of the most cherished values and beliefs of the Occident’s glory days have come to be considered immoral, while some of the worst vices are now accepted and even encouraged.

As a result, we now live in a world turned upside down, meaning that, figuratively but morally speaking, most people are standing on their heads!

An enormous societal upheaval like the West has undergone must begin very slowly if it is to have any chance of succeeding.  As I pointed out in Part I of this article, the beauty of gradualism is that the citizenry is never jolted to the point of threatening armed rebellion.

Instead, as one generation passes on and another one replaces it, creeping changes become the status quo, and anyone who challenges the new status quo is labeled cruel, ignorant, unpatriotic, or just plain crazy.

Most important, at the very heart of the moral disintegration of Western culture was a shift from the sacrosanct belief in individual rights to a belief in majority rule.  In other words, right became whatever the majority said it was.

In a democracy, this concept is defended on the grounds that it promotes “that which is best for the greatest number of people.”  In point of fact, however, the notion that one group of people has a right to commit aggression against another group based on the premise that “the majority is always right” is without moral justification.

In early America, majority rule was called by its proper name — “lynching.”  If a group decided someone was deserving of its wrath, it simply used brute force to do whatever it pleased to that individual.  It was, however, illegal, because it was done without government sanction.

That was the key — government sanction.  And it was the granting of that sanction that was the catalyst for the moral revolution.  Government sanction paved the way for the legalization of lynch‑mob rule, or so‑called majority rule, which displaced individual sovereignty as the moral lynchpin of Western civilization.

The chief problem with majority rule is that a political democracy is too fragile to withstand human greed and envy.  Inevitably, greedy and envious people — both voters and politicians — begin to figure out how to use majority rule to their advantage.

Voters test the waters and, much to their delight, find that they can plunder their neighbors by simply voting to change the laws that were originally put into place to protect people’s lives and property.  As to politicians, they figure out relatively early that they can achieve political longevity by appealing to the greed and envy of voters.

In the early stages of the moral revolution, only hard‑core nonproducers (e.g., politicians, thieves, and the terminally shiftless) fully understood the possible implications of a political democracy.  With the passage of time, however, more and more producers caught on to the game and went the way of the nonproducers.

In other words, basically honest, hard‑working people ultimately gave in to their human weaknesses and chose to fulfill their desires through the ballot box and government force rather than through productive labor.  This caused a natural acceleration in the evolution of both the revolution and the collapse.

Just as the Founding Fathers feared would happen, as more and more people surrendered to their ignoble instincts, they increasingly fought one another for control of the lynching apparatus (i.e., the legislative process).  This in turn whetted the politician’s appetite for still more power, because he could see, clearly and tantalizingly, that the promise to use his legislative power to lynch every citizen’s neighbor would bring him the necessary votes to attain and hold public office.

Unfortunately, it got worse — much worse.  In that vein, in Part III of this article I’ll be discussing the rise of the immoral anything-goes society that accelerated the demise of the West.

Robert Ringer

Robert Ringer is an American icon whose unique insights into life have helped millions of readers worldwide. He is also the author of two New York Times #1 bestselling books, both of which have been listed by The New York Times among the 15 best-selling motivational books of all time.

34 responses to “The Collapse of Western Civilization, Part II”

  1. karllembke says:

    It might be worth watching the episode of Orville, "Majority Rule" — where a person's social standing and fate are decided by how many "likes" and "unlikes" he has. There are no other laws or systems of evaluation.

    One wonders at the revolution that must have occurred in order for a society to adopt such a system, but maybe all that was required was for everyone else to get out of the way.

    • peterleg says:

      China is going to bring in something like "Majority Rule" very soon they are talking about it now

    • Jim Hallett says:

      Sounds like the Facebook system of promotion we see governing the lives of so many. If the LIKES are high, then it must be the truth – at least according to Zuckerface.

  2. Kevin says:

    Robert, I think you have usefully identified the fact that there has been a moral revolution, but I do not think you have necessarily demonstrated why it happened. May I posit that it occurred because we ceased operating according to an external, objectified moral benchmark (God, in particular, the Judeo-Christian God), and instead internalised that morality. The moment that morality became solely an internal phenomenon, then we were on the switchback to relativism, where nobody can tell me that I am in the wrong because (to me) it feels as if it is 'right'.

    In a sense this was perhaps a natural development of Enlightenment thinking: 'empiricism' meant in practice whatever was immediately apprehensible from our senses, and thus morality became sensually determined. The Enlightenment also sought to remove God from the intellectual universe, and attempted to argue that, even if He did exist, we could not know for sure what He was like, or what his moral standards might be. It is hardly a surprise that nearly two hundred years of liberal scholarship sought to disembowel, and thus render useless, those texts which were once thought to pronounce authoritatively on such matters as frameworks of morality. Now, it's all up to us, and that's simply a strategy for getting to the bottom of the u-bend as swiftly as possible.

  3. The LookOut says:

    Thanks Robert, again great insights into the road to our demise. Human nature
    being what it is (the path of least resistance) we have strayed afar from the
    Republic our founding fathers envisioned. The career politician has encouraged
    mob rule to stay in power, and the media has abetted this travesty.
    You know we're in deep trouble when States sponsor, and market the" get
    something for nothing" concept (Lotteries), alas our moral compass is broken.

  4. kauai_mike says:

    We're not in Kansas anymore Dorothy …

  5. notpropagandized says:

    The notion that it has taken the disciples of the Frankfurt School and Institute for Social Research just about 100 years to whittle down the now nearly collapsed Western Civilization is a tribute, a testament to the strength of the Judeo Christian culture and religions that had developed to the time of the School's founding. So if high civilization were to recover and rebuild itself, it would take much longer than 100 years to accomplish and yet the recovery would never arrive. Clearly, the events in history that permitted high civilization, warts/wars and all, to its genesis are remarkable and worth studying – a God guided event using flawed and sinful humans.
    To recover, broken civilization must be punished and disciplined to recover its wits. There is where we realize that conservative governance is the maintainer of civilization whereas liberal, licentious governance ALWAYS delivers CHAOS.

    • Jim Hallett says:

      While liberal, licentious governance does indeed lead to CHAOS, any governance by the State is immoral by definition and leads to incompetence. While less governance is preferred, any governance destroys freedom and of course, is also based on the wretched "Majority Rule" concept.

      • notpropagandized says:

        Governance is for people, individuals and families, to control their own lives showing responsibility to one another and to other families and individuals. The problem as you state is that weak citizens abdicate much more (if not all) than the minimum governance to the running of the public domain. In agreement with you, it is a sinful course.

  6. larajf says:

    Well said, as always. We need to break the back of the NWO that's been pushing this. Perhaps it's time to partner up with Russia and take some hard lines against moral relativism.

    • notpropagandized says:

      I think about that, Russia alternative, a lot. Brutal place politically, but disciplined nonetheless. How can one own land there and guns, too? I'd be afraid of my big mouth saying the wrong thing and then disappearing without a trace.

      • larajf says:

        I know. But then I wonder how much of that is true and how much of that is the NWO owned media trying to scare us.
        I don't know the answer. I just wonder if it's time for a show of force?
        I wonder if we can go it alone?
        But I know we must do something.

        • notpropagandized says:

          It is interesting that "extrapolationists" on the issue of gun confiscations project a for-certain showdown between government and liberty-lovers that would be massively destructive. I'm not certain of it, but would hope that patriotism and freedom-loving citizens would resist. Government has its ways of doing things quietly as we know BO et al was sneaking around. Recent revelations make perfect sense – treachery was and is afoot. CorruptMedia is a powerful enemy-force because it can confuse large swaths of populous. Additionally, they are experts at forcing (shaming) sensible people into the shadows of political discourse. Critical mass may have been reached or will be via alternative information sources, but the Marxists are fighting tooth and nail to keep their information monopoly through all the medias. This week's Facebook fiasco have them turning on one another, but they'll be back at their propaganda in no time.

    • Jay says:

      "…partner up with Russia…". After reading a few hundred pages of Solzhenitsyn's The Gulag Archipelago, I'm not sure that would be wise.

      • Kevin says:

        And after reading the whole thing (thanks to Jordan Peterson recommending it), I am quite sure it would be unwise!

  7. Paul says:

    In my younger days, I truly believed the nonsense that the left put out. Then I realized the right was exactly the same. The tryany of the majority is in full swing. Individualism is going the way of the dinasaurs.

  8. Stephan F says:

    The “moral revolution” that Robert refers to is indeed a fact of life, whether you like it or not… and I don’t. But we had a golden opportunity to stop it initially, and then another for a counter-revolution later when it really ramped up. Those chances occurred in 1964 & 1980 respectively, which probably comes as no surprise to most here.

    One person who is vested with the power of moral leadership, and, who has perhaps the biggest impact on the morality of society, is of course the office of the presidency. Had Barry Goldwater been successful getting elected you can be sure things would be much different today. Strike one.

    But the real gut-wrencher of a missed opportunity happened during the Reagan presidency. The very first time we handed the ball off to the ole Gipper he fumbled it over to other side who promptly ran it in for a touchdown. A big lesson we learned from Reagan proved once and for all that you can never trust any politician to do what they say they’re going to do once elected. We had a real shot at reversing direction in 1980, and although he had a lot of help, Reagan continued to fumble the ball throughout his tenure. Strike two.

    And of course that leads us to today to that utter buffoon, one Donald Trump. This nincompoop of a leader fumbled the damn ball before it was ever handed to him. Besides his seemingly unlimited faults and faux pas, he is an utterly amoral person that will lead society down the path to moral diminishment.

    Strike three, yer out.

    • Rick G. says:

      Au H2O 64

    • Jean says:

      I have to disagree somewhat with your assessment. True, Donald Trump is a flawed leader, but he appears to have a moral compass that is rooted in Judeo-Christian values. He may, by accident, help stanch the downward trend, if only for the duration of his term.

      The real culprit here? We, the people. We've allowed government to buy us off, hence, we have traded our souls and our integrity for a bowl of pottage. Every government bennie – from social security to the debacle known as Obamacare – was intended to create a nation of slaves who willingly adopt the morality of the State in place of the morality of a much higher power. And those of us who are baby boomers are probably the worst in terms of not speaking up for western culture. Too many of us were worried about "what the neighbors would think" instead of what legacy we were leaving. Now, the Obamanauts are dead-set on obliterating our generation and any shred of western civilization. They know that our kids, grandkids and great-grandkids are too ignorant of their history or of what the American culture had been only 60 years ago to care.

      • Stephan F says:

        “Trump appears to have a moral compass rooted in Judeo-Christian values.”

        He appears to be a rudderless ship to me.

        But, I guess you’re right… in a way. He does appear to have these values, by today’s standard. But then again, so does Bill Clinton. Do the names Marla Maples, Stormy Daniels, or Playmate Karen McDougal ring any bells? I give you these are alleged affairs, but let’s be real. To believe Trump never fooled around is like Clinton believing in celibacy.

        I fully agree that the real problem is “some of the people”, not We, the people. That sounds to all inclusive which I’ll bet you’ll probably agree.

        • Jean says:

          "We" may be all encompassing, but "some" makes the issue seem minor. "Most" is the word I would use, and just interacting with the public as I have to do reinforces that belief. Maintaining an ethical standard is HARD WORK – something that "most" people have an aversion to – and the leftist rhetoric of entitlement and victimhood makes people feel good without having to BE good. When the doo-doo hits the fan and the inevitable consequences hit, just blame the white, male, heterosexual Christian patriarchy and BOOM – you're off the hook for all of your stupid choices and imbecilic behavior.

          • Stephan F says:

            I agree, “most” is a more accurate description. For example:

            The principle cause for the majority of our economic & moral problems (but obviously not the only one) is the sad fact that “most” of the populace today belong to the parasitical class. They have:

            (1) adopted, accepted, and are highly motivated by the “something-for-nothing mentality,” and, as a result
            (2) approve of and sanction certain forms of theft and believe it’s morally justified to enslave their fellow man.

            In other words “most” of your neighbors are now being bought off & rewarded with stolen govt loot by politicians and the political class in exchange for their votes & support.

            Yes, yes indeed, that sounds much better.

      • Jim Hallett says:

        The problem is that the Founders, when they used "We the People" were opposed to democracy, as they knew majority rule would lead to disaster, perhaps not as grave as it is today. Far too much power and prestige are given to the U.S. Presidency, when it was really meant to be a ceremonial position. I still say that Woodrow Wilson, FDR and LBJ were most responsible for turning the populace into dependent sheeple looking for the government savior to deliver the goods. Obama, a devout Marxist, was awful, and ObamaCare added to the mess, but individual thinking and liberty were delivered its most devastating blows by the 3 administrations mentioned above. Even the good intents of Ronald Reagan could not reverse the trend, as govt. also grew mightily during his 8 years.

    • Rocketman says:

      The problem with that is if we didn't have Trump as our president it would have been Hillary (Caligula)Clinton. If you think that we're in deep trouble now, it's nothing compared to what would have happened if THAT scenario had played out.

      • Rick G. says:

        She would have been the Mother of All Disasters for sure. Worst than Obama, if you can possibly imagine that.

    • Rick G. says:

      We will never know what things would be like had Goldwater-Miller or Mondale-Ferraro, or Dukakis-Benson been elected. In my opinion, I Ithnk the result would be what we now have present day. I really believe in the social aspect of entropy, that is, everything has a tendency to break down, come apart, and disintegrate. The same for western civiization.

  9. Rick G. says:

    There you have it, folks. Robert Ringer tells it the way it really is. If one could go back in time, just in ten-year increments, to let's say the 1940's, one can surely see and cannot deny that the collapse has been an ongoing process, as Robert Ringer states. And it continues today unabated. Just to name a few symptoms I see around me include, glorification and respect for homosexuality; road rage gun shoot outs; trash TV; open verbal presidential assassination threats; internet cyber fraud; massive decline in church affiliation and attendence; hatefulness, rudeness, disrespect, and discourteousness from others out in public; cursing, swearing, and use of "F-bombs" openly tossed about in the media, violence and gun shootings in schools, the ever-growing widespread use of EBT food stamps, welfare, and forms of other government dependency. And the list goes on and on. We didn't have all of this years ago. And on such a large scale. Just stop and think for a moment or two and you can come up with your own list. It seems that everything that once was held to be good, is now considered to be bad, while everything that is bad is now considered to be good. I often wonder what things will be like, let's say, twenty years from now. Just to fast-forward time, the country will be here, life will definitely go on, but you will hardly recognize the country as the collapse continues on its merry course. Having read Robert Ringer's "How You Can Find Happiness During the Collapse Of Western Civilization" for the first time in 1983, it was like getting splashed in the face with cold water, a real eye opener for me as to what was going on around me. From then on, nothing has been the same. That is the impact that this book has had on me!

  10. Richard Lee Van Der says:

    Ultimately, relief comes with release. All an individual has to do is wait.

  11. Lana says:

    I believe in your analysis, as terrifying and hopeless as it seems. There must be a way to return integrity to the American people and rid ourselves of the parasites sucking the life out of our country. I don't believe this has to be fatal for Western Civilization, but we can't let it go much further.

    • Jim Hallett says:

      It starts with State Nullification – completely ignoring the dictates of this corrupt monster. Then one has to demonstrate integrity in all of their individual affairs, and NOT commit any aggression against others (except defense of one's own person, property, etc.).

  12. Sam says:

    We seem to be devoid of a solution here and focusing upon what we all know and have suspected. What is sufficient is to change one's own thinking which translates into changing one's behavior. Of course, its not easy, however, on an individual basis one has realized the truth of the matter as to whether there can be peace in the middle east, solve that individually one has the key to most of all human problems in a nut shell.

  13. Guido says:

    I was wondering, Robert, the remark you made about anyone who questions the status quo is 'cruel, ignorant, lazy, or just plain crazy' , well, which of these are you? Historically civilization grow, thrive, decline, and crash and burn, it's inevitable, and not to get all twisted about, it's just the nature of man and civilization. The only way to look at it is which period did 'you' inhabit, perhaps look at ancient Athens and the life and times of Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle, a wondrous era, Rome, Egypt, etc., they all collapsed and so shall we, it's Gods plan' neither writing' demonstrating nor filibustering will change His plan, it's written in the 'stars'…and we and the rest of mankind will pass into the history books, to be questioned, analyzed, and written about by future generations for our hubris and ignorance, and they too shall pass on into history, etc, etc. etc….It's been nice reading your columns hope somewhere sometime your intellect is regarded as prophetic, not I, it has already been written…

  14. Dave says:


    And it’s much worse here in South Africa. The radical left (Economic Freedom Fighters – EFF) here does as it pleases. The leader of the EFF often uses hate speech such as “Shoot the Farmer, Kill the Farmer”…knowing full well that most farmers are white…basically an incitement to commit genocide against a minority group…ordering their followers to murder whites.

    SA government is also working against minority whites in SA in the UN and EU, saying that the high rates of farm murders…torturing the farmer and his family before killing them, “does not require priority attention”. The ruling ANC party tell lies and half-truths to the world about what is really going in SA. And the world believes it!

    Since 2007, at the direction of the government, South African police have stopped releasing statistics about the race of the victims. Monitoring group Genocide Watch says the cover-up has been exacerbated by European governments, which have “remained silent about the problem, reinforcing the campaign of denial”.

    And now the majority has called for the CONFISCATION of white-owned land WITHOUT compensation. So like you mentioned in one of your earlier articles contrary to what power holders would like us to believe, in a democracy neither the individual nor the minority has any real protection against the virtually unlimited power of the state.

    I’m not even going to discuss affirmative action…that’s a subject on its own…best summed up an insert in the London Times:

    “South Africa is the only country in the world where affirmative action is in the favor of the majority who has complete political control. The fact that the political majority requires affirmative action to protect them against a 9% minority group is testament to a complete failure on their part to build their own wealth making structures, such that their only solution is to take it from others.”

  15. Robby Bonfire says:

    I had a phone discussion with a friend of mine, recently, in which we disagreed upon something. I maintain that the more advanced the technology, the more in decline are social skills, and in time, a society collapses when people have little or no social skills on display in their social and business dealings with others.
    It may be a small thing, but almost no one says "You're welcome," anymore, all you get now is "No problem," when you thank someone for a service rendered.

    People's communications skills are declining at a rapid rate, the more time they are involved with their cell phone, P.C., I-Pad, telephone, video games, smart phone, etc. And so many people, today cannot make change for a dollar bill. or jot down ideas in script, as script is no longer taught in our schools, and who determined this change? Or know how to spell, starting with the ubiquitous mistake seen online wherein people now spell the word LOSE, as LOOSE, a mistake made by a reporter in a daily newsprint newspaper I saw last week. This is a society with a glorious future?

    Sure we have domestic and foreign enemies but I say runaway technology is the greatest of them all and is hurling us down a road to self-destruction, in the near future.