Liberalism has undermined civilization, has destroyed religions, has ruined nations. Primitive peoples know no liberalism. The world is for them a simple place where one man shares with another. Instinctively they conceive existence as a struggle in which all those who belong in any way to one group must defend themselves against those who threaten them.
Great states have always held liberalism in check. When a great individual arose amongst them who gave the course of their history a new direction, they have been able to incorporate him into their tradition, to make his achievements contribute to their continuity.
Nations who had ceased to feel themselves a people, who had lost the state-instinct, gave liberalism its opportunity. The masses allowed an upper crust to form on the surface of the nation. Not the old natural aristocracy whose example had created the state; but a secondary stratum, a dangerous, irresponsible, ruthless, intermediate stratum which had thrust itself between. The result was the rule of a clique united only by self-interest who liked to style themselves the pick of the population, to conceal the fact that they consisted of immigrants and nouveaux riches, of freedmen and upstarts. They did not care whether their arrogance and new-won privilege was decked out with the conceptions of feudal or of radical ideology, though they preferred a delicate suggestion of aristocracy. But they found it most effective and successful to style themselves democrats.
From Germany's Third Empire (1923)