By Martin Wakaba – an individual who is keen on developmental concepts
The connection between liberalism, capitalism, and democracy has always elicited different opinions and viewpoints. However, Fukuyama’s beliefs as affirmed in his writings go further than showcasing a mere connection between these aspects. In 1989, Francis Fukuyama penned an attention-grabbing piece of writing that would later raise arguments and endless counter-arguments. Fukuyama affirmed that with the collapse of the Soviet Union, coupled with the fall of Communism, capitalism and liberal democracy had scored huge gains. In essence, Fukuyama averred that freedom and security had been achieved, consequently ending the storied past and history. According to Francis Fukuyama, such a triumph by the West had shattered any form of a platform that would destroy the desirable attributes of humanity, democracy, capitalism, and liberalism. Primarily, as per his arguments, it laid the basis for the propagation of aspects that provide fundamental rights, freedom, as well as democracy across the globe. Based on Fukuyama’s central argument, the connection between liberty, capitalism, democracy, and social awareness had provided a new chapter for all individuals. However, with occurrences that contradict the position acclaimed by Fukuyama, the narrative has been crumbling. In essence, the happenings, economic scenarios, as well as political developments, in the world have provoked debates and controversies as regards Fukuyama’s writings. Primarily, the global occurrences give rise to several questions concerning Fukuyama’s position. How wrong was Fukuyama in his literary works that informed the fundamental thesis? To what scale do the happenings in the world contradict Fukuyama’s claims?
Momentarily, Fukuyama seemed right in his opinions in that the ideological differences that characterised the chasm between the East and the West had ended. To further affirm his position, Fukuyama, a political scientist, gushed that the liberal democracy espoused by the West had triumphed. For a while, Fukuyama was the darling of the media and other forums that discussed global politics pertaining to the economy and society. However, his narrative did not hold for long as occurrences that damaged his theory occurred in almost every corner of the world. Fukuyama had become an ideological pounding boy as a result of his dictum. Overall, Fukuyama’s narrative has been overwhelmed and beleaguered by occurrences that damage the prospects of liberal democracy and capitalism. Henceforth, there is a need to deconstruct Fukuyama’s opinions and writings as regards the end of history.
Democracy and liberal conceptions anchor a platform that wipes away the ugliness brought about by racial differences. In the writings, Fukuyama noted that democracy, as well as liberalism, had been ushered by the West’s triumph. Primarily, democracy would have espoused a social platform that abhors racism. However, nothing much has changed as regards the racial prejudices and ethnic profiling that is rampant across the world. Several years after Fukuyama penned his thesis, many people are still discriminated along racial and ethnic lines. In fact, the world has become so polarised that racism seems the norm. If liberalism countered any further challenges in the world, why does racial profiling exist in most nations? Why do people see each other through the prism of ethnicity? In an increasingly protectionist globe, governments and regimes are finding it hard to wipe away the damages made by racial differences. As a result, it has left an indelible mark on the global stage that expounds on the ugly outcomes of racists tendencies. Henceforth, even though Fukuyama argued that democracy had trashed any cynical perspective, the opposite seems right. In this regard, racism besets Fukuyama’s opinions as well as delegitimising the concepts that informed his thesis.
Lack of freedom of worship
Liberal approaches call for the freedom of worship. It, therefore, means that everyone is free to worship that which he/she thinks is right. Moreover, it calls for the enshrinement of an ideological awareness that connects people of different religions. Overall, liberalism and democracy should institute a mechanism that fosters the freedom to worship in any part of the world. However, that is not the situation around the world. Different societies across the globe have a dominant majority that pays homage to a specific supreme being. The state of affairs is so precarious that it would be a grave sin to worship another deity in some countries. Religious secularism has been instituted with an aim to wipe out the ideological awareness that inculcates the right to worship. For instance, some Arab countries have banned any other form of religion in their respective territories. Blatantly, such acts go against the spirit of democracy and the respect for individual rights. Such an instance means that anyone in such jurisdictions has to abide by the regulations or risk endless wrath from the authorities. These ugly occurrences happen in the wake of democracy that Fukuyama revered. If liberalism instigated positive aspects of humanity, why should people be subjected to religious discrimination? Why should dominant societies impose religious preferences on everyone? The outcomes regarding such instances showcase that Fukuyama was wrong in his observations. Democracy has not been able to curtail any adverse scenario that fosters acts against the right to worship.
Capitalism occupies a central theme in Fukuyama’s explanations as regards the state of affairs in the world. After the collapse of Communism, the economic projections were tipped to advance as impelled by the capitalistic ventures. Indeed, economic fortunes have increased as founded on the free-market ventures but only to the advantage of some few individuals. In essence, such instances trounce the basic foundations of Fukuyama’s explanations. With the rise of capitalism, Fukuyama predicted that economic prospects would favour every setting of the society. However, the exact opposite is being witnessed in most parts of the world. The 2009 financial crisis affected the world in ways that would not have been predicted. It is noteworthy that capitalistic economies suffered most hence ample evidence that capitalism lacks a framework that thwarts injurious outcomes. Moreover, under the liberal democracy, economic inequality has hit alarming rates. Despite a globalised setting, working conditions for employees have not improved. Essentially, such wobbly conditions put the lives of these employees at danger. As a result, capitalism institutes a damaging prospect for workers as opposed to protecting them. Skewed and unfair projections regarding salaries and inequitable distribution of wealth damage any aura of hope as regards capitalism. Furthermore, the strikes by workers and industrial actions act as examples of how rogue capitalism has become. If capitalism institutes fairness for everyone, why are there regular occurrences of workers’ strikes and boycotts? Why does capitalism provide a platform for the iniquitous allocation of resources and material goods? Overall, these scenarios contradict Fukuyama’s predictions.
Failure of liberalised market economies
Fukuyama opined that democratic states that hinged on liberal capitalism permitted citizens to thrive. Primarily, Fukuyama pointed to the lack of oppression, as well as peace, which nurtures an amiable atmosphere for consumerism and economic expansion. Such an argument as regards laissez-faire economics hits the wall when contrasted with China’s Marxists capitalism. The rise of China’s economy presents a counterargument to Fukuyama’s thoughts about capitalism. China’s Marxist approach regarding their economy browbeats the model conceptualised by the West. In essence, it should be noted that democracy is an alien term in China. That notwithstanding, China’s economy has been growing tremendously. It connotes that an economy can grow without democracy, as the case with China. Therefore, liberalism is not necessarily a vital ingredient in the growth of economic fortunes. While democracy calls for maximum political participation by citizens, the Chinese authoritarianism advocates for the exact opposite. Within the prism of economic outcomes, the American liberalism as regards economic fortunes has not achieved as much as the Chinese totalitarian approach. Practically, these different results puncture holes on Fukuyama’s opinions concerning the linkage between liberal democracy and the economy of a nation. If democracy fosters a ground for the propagation of wealth, why is China’s economy growing at a higher rate than that of the USA?
Terrorism and Islamic fundamentalism has been a great bane to Fukuyama’s hypothesis. With the advancement in democracy, Fukuyama purred that humanity would be upheld. Henceforth, it connoted that social integration and inclusivity would be vital pillars in the world. However, the rise of Islamic fundamentalism denounces any argumentative approach aligned to Fukuyama. The terrorist attacks by ISIS showcase that democracy has not instituted a cover for everyone. In fact, the liberty espoused by liberalism has nurtured hardliners who only think of themselves. The Western liberal democracy fails to protect the citizens from such attacks, exposing them to dangers from external and internal sources. In a nutshell, that is not what Fukuyama had in mind when he praised the advancement of liberal democracy after the fall of the Soviet Union.
Populism and rightwing beliefs
Besides, the rise of populism and rightwing ideologies shows that people are fed up with liberalism. The victories by Donald Trump and Viktor Orban in the USA and Hungary respectively herald a new dawn that underlines the surge in populist policies. As the epitomes of populism, Orban and Trump have been at the forefront of trashing democratic values yet the populace voted for them. If democracy is vital for everyone, why did Hungarians and Americans vote for people who trash democratic gains and the liberal approaches? Overall, Fukuyama’s thoughts about liberalism fade under the surge in rightwing tendencies and populist politics.