Christian Science Monitor: Bad news is loud. Good news rules - John Yemma
If you look behind the often dire headlines and examine the long-term trends, you'll see that crime is falling, lifespans are increasing, and poverty is ebbing. In other words, there's solid evidence for hope.
There's much more good news than bad news. But bad news travels fast and commands attention. Good news is like water carving a valley or a tree gradually extending its branches. Good news is a child learning a little more each day or a business quietly prospering. We hardly notice it.
Examine the data over time, and you'l find irrefutable evidence of progress: the decline of war and violent crime, the increase in life spans; the spread of literacy, democracy, and equal rights; the waning of privilege based on race, gender, heredity, beliefs (Jina Moore and a team of Monitor writers say this much more specifically in our cover story: "Progress Watch 2012").
Every so often there are vivid scenes of good news -- Neil Armstrong bouncing onto the moon, revelers atop the Berlin Wall, Nelson Mandela walking out of Robben Island prison. But most of the time good news is incremental, which causes it to be taken for granted.
Not bad news. When we hear it, we sit up and ask, "What just happened?"...
... And when there's a shortage of bad news in the present, we can always turn to the future. Welcome to worry, dread, and pessimism. Sure, things seem OK now, but just over the horizon a disaster is brewing. Don't be a sap. Bad things are on the way.
They probably are. And they'll shock us and again make us wonder if life is out of control. But in this last issue of our news magazine for 2012, we're looking in the rearview mirror to see how things are going, and we're finding plenty of reason for hope. ...