The World is Getting Better
Years ago, I read advice that said the best way to improve your outlook on life was to turn off the news! And, with respect to my friends in the news business, to a large degree it is good advice.
I would alter it by saying cap your news intake to a max of 30 minutes a day. Tuning out completely is a bad idea because it runs counter to a basic tenet of representative government, which is an informed citizenry.
But more than modest consumption and one might be led to believe it is the end of times! So, as consumers of all the modern-day sound and fury, self-preservation is in our own hands alone!
As such, when stories appear that cut across the grain of politically enhanced doom and gloom, they catch one’s eye. I read and watch them with great interest and set them aside for future re-reading and viewing when I need reminded that the world being presented isn’t necessarily the complete picture.
Let me share a few gems:
- A study by Just Facts found that “after accounting for all income, charity, and non-cash welfare benefits like subsidized housing and Food Stamps—the poorest 20% of Americans consume more goods and services than the national averages for all people in most affluent countries.”
- A January article in Reason Magazine titled “The World Is Getting Better, Declare Op-Eds in Leading Newspapers” by Ronald Baily links to multiple things-are-better-than-you-think stories.
- One of the stories cited in the Reason article states “Measured by global average hourly income, the price of a representative basket of 50 key commodities—food, energy, minerals, and so forth—has fallen by nearly two-thirds since 1980. Measured by the time it takes to buy the basket, the Earth’s resources have become 380 percent more abundant as the human population grew by 69 percent.”
- Another author wrote “Each day on average, about another 295,000 people around the world gained access to electricity for the first time….Every day, another 305,000 were able to access clean drinking water for the first time. And each day an additional 620,000 people were able to get online for the first time.”
- The same writer goes on to say “Average global life expectancy was just over 52 years in 1960; it has now increased to 72 years. In addition, the global literacy rate has risen from 69 percent in 1976 to 86 percent in 2016.”
Anyway, as I inoculate myself from a tough ‘news season,’ I thought some of you might like to do the same. Enjoy!