Kyrel, even though we have had our disagreements, I will grant that facts matter to you, but insist that you actually read the Adams book for yourself. He begins with the premise that most people think that they live in an objective world where experiential evidence is explained by logically consistent reasoning. In fact, he says, few people work that way. Mostly, people fall for emotional appeals and make up rationalizations. That said, I agree with you that, broadly, the world is getting better.
The salient fact offered here is that Trump could have run on Bernie Sanders's platform. Trump is no more emotionally invested in immigration or climate warming than he is in a hotel or a golf course. If you know Michael Moore's speech about why alienated Americans will flock to Trump, then you understand that Trump could have run as a Democrat. I believe that it is just that the field was already owned by a strong competitor, so he went after the right wing populist spectrum.
Vera, see above. I thought that the world was going to end in chaos soon ever since I first read Ayn Rand in 1966. Atlas Shrugged was the preface to Anthem and the path from here to there was going be a lot like We the Living every day...
And yet here we are online with a space station in orbit, telescopes finding new planets, the human genome mapped, ... I give you one statistic: automobile deaths. Back in 1966, we were killing about 40,000 Americans per year. It still gets up there, high 30s, but we have over 300 million now, not just 200. So, per capita the rate is falling (despite human failure) because automobile are safer. And they are more fuel efficient, and, as part of that, they are lighter in weight, but the luxuries from all-view cameras to convenient USB taps, movie screens, surround sound radio from satellites, and (as I understand it) 19 cup holders in a Subaru. We don't even question the presence of air conditioning, as if we could go back to side-vents and floor vents. And that's just cars. In 1965, there were 5 deaths per 100,000 US Commercial Flight Hours (Pretty good, all in all.). In 2014, it was 0.05, one percent of the 1965 numbers, and it was ZERO for 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2015. In line with Scott Adams, Vera, I would say that you are succumbing to confirmation bias. You are not alone in that. The right wing spectrum is joined by many "limits to growth" leftists who expect (want) globalist capitalism to come crashing down.
(Edited by Michael E. Marotta on 12/30, 2:37pm)