“It is time for America to get over its funk, stop listening to alleged experts who make their fortunes coming up with novel theories of national catastrophe.” Tony Blankley, ‘The great American funk’, The Washington Times, November 30, 2010
The last two years have not been good ones economically for most Americans. Many have lost jobs, others have confronted pay freezes, others have seen their businesses flounder in the wake of the ongoing banking crisis, many have seen their savings fluctuate wildly as the stock market experienced almost unprecedented turbulance. Most have seen the value of their houses plunge, following the bursting of the house price bubble in late 2006. In such times, it is difficult indeed to remain optimistic.
Yet, as Tony Blankley stresses, optimism in bad times is what has always distinguished Americans from other peoples. America’s ‘can-do’ spirit has been the wonder of the ages, the principal reason why the 20th century legitimately can be called the American century.
So for a moment in this column let us look on the bright side of the U.S. economy, and ask whether Americans are now ready once more to make it ‘Morning in America’. There are many beams of sunshine out there to warm our frozen spirits.
First, let us remember that the gross domestic product of the United States is larger than the next three national outputs – China, Japan and Germany – combined. Second, the United States remains the acknowledged leader in almost all technologies. Third, United States universities dominate the world league table . Fourth, the United States enjoys the youngest population of all developed nations. Fifth, the United States, though its rule of law is battered, still leads the world in this regard. Sixth, the United States has enjoyed 200 years of democracy and capitalism.
Most important of all, despite the growth in the size and scope of the U.S. government, the private sector also has grown. As long as the private sector outraces the government, all should be well for the future generations. Yes, we have much to be thankful for, and even more to be optimistic about.