Sunday, February 01, 2015

America's Drastic Decline

This isn’t going to brighten up your Super Bowl Sunday, but it’s far more important than who wins today’s game. Our country is in serious decline.

American exceptionalism is the idea that America has been blessed by God and is inherently superior to other countries in the world. Obama declared at one point that he believed in American exceptionalism.

The facts, however, tell a far different story. You won’t hear about this by listening to the mainstream media, but over the last thirty or forty years, our country has fallen farther and farther behind the world’s other developed nations in a wide array of important areas. The partial list below is mostly from an article titled “America is the best country in the world at being last” from today’s Alternet, but I’ve added a few additional ones.

Most Americans would tell you that they love their country, but then vote people into office who do far more harm than good. If you truly love America, vote for people who want to turn this nation around and move us back up to the top of these rankings.

A superpower in name only, America now has
  • the highest poverty rate, both generally and for children;
  • the greatest inequality of incomes;
  • the lowest social mobility;
  • the lowest score on the UN’s index of “material well-being of children”;
  • the worst score on the UN’s Gender Inequality Index;
  • the highest expenditure on health care as a percentage of GDP, yet all this money was accompanied by the highest infant mortality rate, the highest prevalence of mental health problems, the highest obesity rate, the highest percentage of people going without health care due to cost, the highest consumption of antidepressants per capita, and the shortest life expectancy at birth;
  • the next-to-lowest score for student performance in math and middling performance in science and reading;
  • the highest homicide rate;
  • the largest prison population in absolute terms and per capita;
  • the highest carbon dioxide emissions and the highest water consumption per capita;
  • the lowest score on Yale’s Environmental Performance Index (except for Belgium) and the largest ecological footprint per capita (except for Denmark);
  • the lowest spending on international development and humanitarian assistance as a percentage of national income (except for Japan and Italy);
  • the highest military spending both in total and as a percentage of GDP. America spends $600 billion a year on defense, which is more than the next 10 countries combined;
  • the largest international arms sales;
  • The second largest percentage of citizens who do not believe in evolution (besides Turkey);
  • an economy that allowed 100 percent of the economic gains made between 1983 and 2013 go to the top 20 percent.

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