Posted by Bill Moore
Good catch, this is one measure of what nation has made the most (and continues to do) contributions to the betterment of mankind, but it still doesn't capture the essence of our national character to do well for others (this character is separate from our government).
Like you, I have traveled and seen enough to know
that America is in many instances a force for good.
Perhaps part of the underlying concept we are wrestling with (the elephant and the blind men describing it's various parts) is appreciation/trust/reliability? Sunrises (across Nicaraguan jungles, Iraqi rivers, Euro mountain ranges, US seacoasts, etc) and and nighttime cityscapes (San Salvador, Baghdad, Barcelona, Munich, Ciudad Juarez, or wherever) often provide me with daily hope and inspiration. Like me, you know
that a basic meal, clean water, shelter, electricity, and security are pretty big deals in many parts of the world. Systems - technical, economic, and governance have to successfully mesh every day/night to make these basics available, and that meshing requires appreciation/trust/reliability.
Are fuel deliveries dependable? Is the fuel sufficiently pure to spin the turbine? Is the turbine sufficiently engineered and maintained to generate power? Are the transmission and distribution systems capable and sufficiently placed? Are generators the answer instead? Will the 'schools' persist for long enough to educate the number of minds needed to carry the new generation along while caring for old one and the future one to come?
What organizations/countries/clusters are known/trusted for turbines (Hitachi, Siemens, GE, etc), fuel (coal
, natural gas
, etc), food (wheat
, etc), education (universities
), information (newspapers
War and death, however, literally make many gun-shy. That's double edged of course, good for our enemies (few of them) and bad for our friends, admirers, and business/economics partners (many of those). Shorthand wise, we are out of balance and we need to get back to focusing on the many versus the few. Akin to - waaayyyy too much time & resources spent on the screw-ups to the detriment of the unit as a whole...
Ratio's are very helpful for gaining additional insights and context that numbers in isolation do not always provide.
Growing and building things for a better tomorrow versus arbitrarily imposing them.
Free markets (in many instances the theoretical ideal, bounded by messy reality of course) and coalition building? Globalization?
Perhaps a sitcom for you...http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Big_Bang_Theory