The Rational Optimist Part 2
It is one of my top 10 favorite books of all time, and is changing the way I view technology, progress, prosperity, the past, present, and future. Not only does it provide me with legitimate reasons to be more optimistic about the future, it also makes me profoundly grateful for all that I have now. I don’t agree with all that he says, but he provides some fantastic information for readers to process on their own, from which they can draw their own conclusions. His is a pay it forward kind of philosophy. I’ve no doubt the world would be a different place if even just some of us, and most importantly, the media, thought like him.
In answer to Kenai’s question about Kings and peasants, in the context of human history, the United States has, for all practical purposes, no statisically significant population of peasants, in my opinion. Even the poor in the United States furnish their houses with air conditioners and have some choice at meal time. That is more than King Louis had, and certainly more than most Americans had even as little as 50 years ago. Those who are living without homes, almost all of them, are doing so by choice.
In the rest of the world, the ratios are different and Africa seems to be the most difficult nut to crack, still not having experienced even the limited prosperity that most of Asia now enjoys. The chapter analyzing and addressing Africa’s current heart-wrenching situation is enlightening and exciting for the possibilities that are there.
Update: For my own reference.