Whether using the terms "western civilization" or "western culture" to describe the driving force of a people-group, one is forced to conclude that the "western" influence driving the culture of this country for the last 300 or so years is now on the wane. The bent toward the technological, philosophical, and religious influences brought mostly from Europe to bear on the development of the United States by way of both inculcating and maintaining this society is now being prostituted in this country socially just as it has been in Europe, i.e., technology still remains of utmost importance while the religio-philosophical component is falling by the wayside.
Since all that happens is directly governed by the religio/philosophical component, the use of technology will be put to whatever utility the culture demands. If that component is degraded by a society, or if strong amoral leaders overcome a society, the technology eventually is neutralized. Case in point: the Third Reich of Adolph Hitler's Germany of the 1920s-40s. That Third Reich society was technologically superior to that of many if not most other societies, with its main utility being the aggressive destruction of other societies. Its leadership was amoral and imposed its will on a people with strong religious convictions collectively but either through ignorance or the promise of ending their poverty provided essentially no dissent. Outcome: the deaths of 25 million, untold injuries, material devastation, and the neutralizing of its technology.
Hitler's approach was only the latest in modern times of the notion that technological might should be used not for societal right, but for dominance. He simply mirrored the ethic of "Olde Europe," the proposition that technology could be used to enslave people – thus the colonization of huge parts of the world for the enrichment of the national treasuries and the gratification of a handful of government leaders and apparatchiks. World War II – a fight to the finish to preserve individual worth and freedom – brought an end to most colonies throughout the world, as indigenous peoples asserted their claims by the end of the 1960s.
It was the British, not the Americans, who colonized what grew to be the United States. It was the British, not the Americans, who introduced slavery as the engine of production, though it must be said that all world economies for thousands of years throughout all recorded history right into the 19th century and even later in some parts of the world were anchored in slavery. It was the British, not the Americans, who fought the Indians for the 180 or so years before this nation was officially founded. By 1789, the die was cast with regard to the Indians, to wit, that in their primitive state they could not hope to own land that they could not govern. By 1840, the same was true with the Mexicans, who could not govern or protect what is now the U.S. Southwest and therefore lost it. It's worth noting, however, that neither the Indians nor the Mexicans were enslaved.
The religio/philosophical departure of this country from that of Olde Europe was pronounced in the abolition of slavery, accomplished in only 80 or so years after its entrenchment of some 180 years. This represented a superiority of American religious and philosophical thought. The emphasis on technology, however, has remained, though the culture, i.e., the societal mores is now declining in the same way as that of Olde Europe, gradually degrading from the superior model established after the Civil War until recently, when it began going in the tank.
The recent elections/constitutional-adjustments are replete with ramifications regarding whither the country is headed with respect to both the culture and the technical, the latter informed and governed by the former. American society in all of its aspects has been determined by the WASPs, essentially white Anglo-American Protestant men. This is not a pejorative negative or a pronouncement of superiority concerning everyone else, just a fact. This is changing to the extent that the "western" approach magnifying the individuality of each person – not just males – is being gradually eroded and not just by democrats but also by republicans.
Capitalism, with its emphasis on individual initiative, is being replaced by socialism, with its emphasis on the "herd." Realism regarding gender, with its emphasis on the differences, is being replaced by "unisex," with its emphasis on hopeless sameness. Family, with its emphasis on husband/wife/children, is being replaced by whatever is the "unnatural" both biologically and philosophically, with its emphasis on perversion. The spiritual, with its emphasis on Judeo-Christianity resulting in Golden-Rule right-living, is being replaced with hedonism resulting in sensual gratification, with its emphasis on "numero uno."
Liberalism, with its gradually increasing emphasis on placing everyone on the same level – the lowest common denominator as in Olde Europe – is coming to the fore with the new administration abetted by an overwhelmingly democrat Congress; however, this has also been happening under the republicans. So…this is a critical juncture in the nation's history. Will the United States continue emulating Olde Europe with respect to societal structures, i.e., an "anything goes" approach to life-style, with the state in control of virtually everything and everybody, or will it revert to its once-superior spiritual and philosophical stances?
A simple example: The president-elect favors same-sex union (civil union, whatever), which is code for same-sex marriage, a biological impossibility and destructive of the family, the society's basic unit. Virtually all the states have constitutional provisions and/or laws (in many cases, both) militating against this monstrosity, but an amoral leadership or citizenry can conceivably overcome this, the effort having been made already in both Massachusetts (statute) and California (through the courts), thus extorting the taxpayers to fund both perversion and a raid on public treasuries. Arkansas citizens even voted in the recent election to disallow co-habiting, unmarried adults (including homosexuals) to adopt children or serve as foster parents, thus protecting children from observing or considering unnatural acts as normal.
Barack Obama has literally promised the moon, making the state preeminent by legally, inordinately extorting earnings from the achievers, whether corporate or individual, and redistributing them to others, a pie-in-the-sky theme guaranteed to suffocate the brightest in the interest of establishing that lowest common denominator – Old Europe. In the process, virtue, already under constant ridicule, will become passé as the nation places its imprimatur on "anything goes," as exemplified in legal tax-extortion, pitting classes against each other and negating a primary ethic, to wit, work/talent/risk rewarded by governmental theft/punishment.