Sunday, October 21, 2018

So How Bad Is The World?

     These are parlous times, right? I keep hearing people saying everything's falling apart, it's all getting worse--

      Wrong. Things are getting better, and they have been getting better for years. Decades, even. But that's not just the opinion of a Midwestern, libertarian spinster. Vox Media is way to the left of me, in part the brainchild of Ezra Klein, and they've got the facts in charts and graphs. Doom and gloom is easy to sell and there's enormous room for improvement; but fewer people are starving, more people can read, and people are, by golly, actually climbing out of the worst kinds of poverty.

     The world isn't perfect.  But it's not as bad as it once was and it's getting better.


RandyGC said...

Some days it feels like you could sum up all the major news providers with this clip and save some time:

Amazing as to how not dying for a long time adds perspective. I remember that death in a nuclear holocaust would be a relief from the slow road to starvation, no power, lung collapse due to pollution and how nice it would be when the coming glaciers would scour the world clean of all of man's stupidity.

pigpen51 said...

Roberta X, You hit the nail squarely on the head. We are feeding more people, with less land, than at any time in history. The truly impoverished in America, are still considered wealthy in most parts of the world.
It used to be considered a sign of wealth if you had a color television set. Then you had to have 2 of them. And now, most Americans have more than they can count. Even people living in third world countries have access to television. I have seen on my own television, where the poor of many nations, still have a tv and many have some method of transportation, be it an automobile, or just a motor scooter.
Infant mortality has gone down steadily, while life expectancy has gone up, in some places up to extremes. Access to quality health care, while a big topic in the news, is still available to everyone in America. No one is ever turned away from an ER due to their inability to pay.
Winter is coming, and yet, we will still be able to buy fresh fruit and vegetables at the market, because of the supply chain that those horrible rich people like the Walton's were a part of setting up.
When is the last time anyone had their television set repaired? I took a TV and VCR repair class over 20 years ago, thinking I could have a nice sideline business. Now, it is cheaper to just throw the old television away and buy a new one.
Without getting political, right now, our nation's military is rebuilding to a stronger place. Some people question the reasoning behind that, but the truth is, many other countries count on us, as their friends and allies, to be able to come to their aid if they are attacked.
The one thing that I continue to find worsening the older I get, is the growing level of mistrust among people on every side of the aisle. Republicans hating Democrats, and vice versa. It used to be that after a day of fighting tooth and nail in the Senate, members from each party would get together and go out to dinner, with the arguments of the day set aside, to be resumed at another time. Now, there is such hatred between those on the extremes of both sides, that I am actually fearful for the coming years and what they might hold, politically, for my children and grandchildren. I do hope we can find some common ground, and I also hope it is not an enemy like during World War II, or the like. Our nation has too much good to allow the bad to overtake our future.

Jay Dee said...

Yes, but if things are getting better then we don't need more government to "fix" things.

Roberta X said...

I'm sorry, JayDee, when did I ever say we did?

Pigpen51: you may have missed the part where things were improving *all* *over* *the* *world.* Slower in some places (or even going the wrong way, at least over the short term), faster in others, and some have a lot farther to go. Americans have done wonderfully well -- but other places have done well, too. A better world is better for everyone; if that foot-caravan marching towards our southern border had opportunity at home, they never would have started out.

pigpen51 said...

I must have had my head on sideways when I wrote that. Because when I said that farmers were feeding more people with less land, I was thinking of worldwide, but made it seem like only in this country.
I do admit that I tend to make the same mistake that our president does, that of being too nationalistic. While patriotism is fine, I should not let it come before common decency to everyone of the world.
That doesn't mean that we cannot have secure borders, etc. It just means that simply because of the luck of the draw, I was born in the U.S., and someone who was unlucky enough to have been born into a 3rd world country whee they are prone to persecution, that in no way makes me better or more important than any other person.
Thanks for pointing this out. I do understand that I have much to learn,and to change, about how I view the country and our place in the world. And I am always grateful when someone points out where I am wrong, which in this case, I was.