I watched 'Civilization: the West plus the Rest with Niall Ferguson' on PBS. Niall Ferguson's concept is: Western Civilization found control the globe through the good luck of combining six 'killer apps', i.e. (1) Competition; (2) Science; (3) Modern Medicine; (4) Democracy; (5) Consumerism; and (6) the (Protestant) work ethic.
So permit me to amend my first statement'I watched the past 20 minutes of the past 2-hour episode. It's engrossing Sociology/History/Theory and I enjoyed what I saw of computer. For instance, he explains why the entire world wants to wear blue-jeans and t-shirts (much like American Cowboys) and just how Protestantism made spending so much time and getting ahead virtues with their faith(s), rather than older, Catholic view that conserving money to buy things, or making an effort to improve one's place in the earth were either vanity or greed and many probably both.
The saddest part was his account of how atheism in Europe has left their Sunday morning church services virtually abandoned (considering that the Europeans nationalized their Reformation churches). Plus, America is showing an increase in Protestantism (Partly due to our successful adherence to your 'separation of church and state', and partly because with the number and selection of protestant churches). But the topper was that China has regions in which the Christian Faith is increasing like a weed'and these communities would be the fastest growing economies in China. Thus we have now not only lost our personal 'Protestant Work Ethic', but we now have transplanted that productivity-enhancing philosophy to mainland China.
For shame! Our proudest possession, that 'Good Ol' American Can-Do Spirit!' is actually in the hands in the Chinese. O well. We still some cool stuffs that is hard to get in most from the rest of the earth. But were stumbling on Education, we're allowing crooks to own the Economy (but I expect which is just a factor you must endure in all forms or era of Civilization). Besides, recent news accounts help it become quite plain which the Chinese have the identical problem, only bigger.
I don't want to sound anti-Chinese'it's this their leaders enforce a repressive government'if you can no longer outdo them in commerce, that will only be proof that our personal freedoms have devolved right into a mixture of lip-service and self-delusion. I do not mean our government is restrictive on the same degree'no, I mean that the corporations have succeeded in changing America right into a place that emphasizes the 'freedom' of corporations and banks to enact legislation that favors their bottom-lines'or their protection against unsatisfied citizens.
I guess what irks me most would be the idea that the entire world has taken some on the best aspects of our culture, however, not until there was made it surface-gloss instead with the iron core it turned out meant to be. In other words, ever since we're really screwing america up, the rest of the entire world wants to play one-up-manship with the corroding and corrupt system. Instead of transforming into a lesson on fidelity and fair dealing'and also the consequences of cutting those corners, our present powers-that-be are obtaining the message that the world is competing with us'and that we are able to't afford to fix our personal capitalist abscesses (and excesses), we've got to target keeping prior to all the other countries!
This is ludicrous, obviously. We should be improving, not competing inside a rigged race. We need federal intervention within the jobless crisis, very little different from FDR's work-projects programs. We need to repair and re-build our infrastructure. Why is it lottery ticket all or nothing so desperately to get these things to manage each other?
The First Lady has evolved improved nutrition, but I are not aware of how much money or effort is now being thrown for the project over and above Ms. Obama's championing of their precepts. And how shall we be held ever gonna wrest our country back through the maelstrom of idiocy that the elected legislators fire up each session, when we would be the ones that elected these clowns? When did politics be a TV show?
How hard can it be to get some reasonable guy who doesn't want to become a congressman, and convince him (or her) that it must be important enough that she or he should do it anyway? That's what we actually need'unwilling candidates'they're the one kind which could be trusted.
Still, it absolutely was a fascinating program series for history-nerds just like me. What we need now could be the sequel'O, Mr. Ferguson! How do we get at this point back to civilization?