A Chart of Human Conditions Over the Centuries
"Do you realize how *$@!%!* lucky we are?" Edition
Our species has experienced a surprisingly limited range of conditions since it arose. Slavery, war, genocide and serfdom were humanity’s prevalent conditions in centuries past. Personal liberty is a recent convention, ignited at scale by America’s founders in 1776.
The accompanying chart attempts to depict those broad categories of human condition by year. Feedback, as always, is appreciated.
Note the red “X” at top right. It represents where you and I today stand.
Throw the dart. See where else you could have landed on the continuum of human condition. Take your chances.
Then take a deep breath and thank America’s founders. Thank America’s founders daily for the gifts we have been granted.
We were born under the beauty of a construct of government — a Constitution and a highest law — yet unparalleled in history when measured by human achievement.
Consider the stunning panoply of life-altering innovations introduced since America’s founding. Flight, antibiotics, telephony, alternating current, the Internet, medical imaging, space travel — to name but a few — have all been spurred by what some have called “the 5,000 year leap.”
No one can point to a more successful system of organizing human activities ever, whether measured by improvement in human longevity, average standard of living or any other rational metric.
Thank America’s founders.
And reject those who decry America.