Tuesday, November 10, 2015
GAWA Day #55: Back in the USA
Say what you want, but it's great to be Back in the USA, a song by Chuck Berry in 1959. Maybe that's because I was Born in the USA, a 1984 song of Bruce Springsteen. But I'm in New Jersey, not Hawaii, at the home of the only hope of continuing the family Takahashi link into the future. But let me return to roots and such tomorrow. Today, I'll compare the United States with the world.
It was three and a half years ago when I posted on AMERICA: THE GREATEST COUNTRY EVER. I began with:
Yes, our government is broken, lobbyists pretty much control what happens in the U.S. Congress, state legislatures and local councils, there seems to be a declining sense of morals, lifestyles are dropping and the combination of global warming and peak oil could ....
Seven years ago I wrote SIMPLE SOLUTIONS for Humanity, which in Chapter One included two sections:
However, only in August I posted:
If you have an uncomfortable feeling that things are not as good today as ten years ago, and your children and children's children will be even worse off in the future, you may be so right. According to the Institute for Historical Review:
More than ever before in our history, the American people sense that something is very wrong in our country. They are concerned about rising social-economic inequality, an erosion of national identity and purpose, increasing social polarization, and growing contempt for the US around the world.
But one thing I did not do was ascertain exactly what the Institute for Historical Review represented. Turns out that this organization is primarily devoted to promoting pseudo-historical books and essays. So while I today retract that section in general, you got to admit that many in the USA, especially Republicans, keep underscoring those above points.
So where, then, are we with respect to greatness in history? If you use land mass, the British Empire controlled 17% of the world's, nearly 23% when you exclude unusable land. Today Russia has the most with 11%. The USA? Less than 2%. But in determining greatness today, you got to also include living conditions and other important factors. I keep thinking back to Maria Theresa, my choice as the greatest female leader of all time, only washing her feet once/week, and never taking any bath or washing her clothes. In much of Great Britain during their days of power, with all that air pollution and subsistence living throughout their empire, that's no place I would like to live. Russia? I've been there, and size of land mass is almost inconsequential to determining greatness.
So with all our warts and imperfections, I remain convinced that the USA is the Best Country in the World, Ever. Our military can crush anything today and yesterday. Our economy (say, for example, the stock market, although more specifically, our free enterprise system) is the only dependable one in the world. Can you imagine if Republicans worked in harmony with Democrats, found a way to ignore the military industrial complex and fossil fuel lobbyists, to instead work for the common good of the people and country? Thus, as terrific as we are today, we can get a whole lot better.
After traveling for nearly two months, all in foreign lands, there is a sense of comfort and security in being back to my home country. It will get cocoon-like when I finally reach 15 Craigside in ten days, not a bad state of mind when some of the other options are stress, fear and uncertainty.
By the way, soon to be Hurricane Kate has formed off the Carolinas, but seems destined just to move away from the USA: