And in my opinion, society doesn't ask people enough what they want. I am a big fan of direct democracy, which is pretty much that - asking people what their preferences (about how the society should operate) are.
Unfortunately this belief is not very scientific. The very manner in which you frame the question, even if it is asking the same thing, can get a differing response from the same person.
Also, people are terrible at self assessment. Unsupervised vs supervised dieters are one of the best examples. Even worse are what people think they want. Most people have a very small pool they can think of at any given time on what they want. Most of the time it is being manipulated by outside benefactors, such as advertisers.