Friday, January 02, 2009

Was 2008 Such a Bad Year

If you are a Republican--maybe--probably. If you were a client of Bernard Madoff--almost certainly. If you are a UAW member--it was a pretty good year.

Yes, we have economic problems, the scope of which almost no one can define. Yes, there is concern (at least in some larger circles) about the incoming Obama Administration.

But, it was as doom and gloom as you would think or expect from the media stance. Radley Balko has some very positive indicators for our society and culture.
I recently heard a conservative talk show host bemoan the "lack of God in our society" as reason for, among other things, the recent "Santa shooting massacre" in Covina, California. The left, meanwhile, is pointing to the financial meltdown as indicative of a different kind of moral failing—the unbridled greed they associate with free enterprise.

Truth is, they're both wrong. The last 12 months may prove not to be the most fondly recalled in recent American history, but things aren't all that bad. Most social indicators are still moving in the right direction. In general, our standard of living continues to improve. Advances in technology are helping us beat the diseases most likely to kill us; giving us more leisure time; making us more comfortable; giving us more convenience; and with the Internet, putting much of the world—quite literally—at our fingertips.
Crime is down, include rape. Technology is extending our lives and making them more comfortable and as a nation, we work fewer hours than we did in 1960.

Yeah, it seems like we are doing okay.

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