Democracy and the Threat of Authoritarianism: Politics Beyond Barack Obama:
"Under the new authoritarianism, the corporate state and the punishing state merge as economics drives politics and repression is increasingly used to contain all those individuals and groups caught in the expanding web of extreme inequality and powerlessness that touches everything from the need for basic health care, food and shelter to the promise of a decent education. As the social state is hollowed out under pressure from free-market advocates, right-wing politicians and conservative ideologues, the United States has increasingly turned its back on any semblance of social justice, civic responsibility and democracy itself. How else to explain the influential journalist Thomas Friedman's shameless endorsement of military adventurism in a New York Times article? Friedman argued, 'The hidden hand of the market will never work without a hidden fist. McDonald's cannot flourish without McDonnell Douglas, the designer of the US Air Force F-15. And the hidden fist that keeps the world safe for Silicon Valley's technologies to flourish is called the US Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps.' Freedom in this discourse is inextricably wedded to state and military violence, and is a far cry from any semblance of a claim to democracy."
Reduce our social relations to economic ones, and what do you get?