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The Good News is, The Bad News is Wrong

The Good News is, The Bad News is Wrong

The environment is cleaner Hate is in decline Lives are longer and happier  

Remember the good old days?  They were not as good as we remember. Despite the daily assault of bad news from an overabundance of news media, things are really better today than yesterday. Here are 9 examples.
The website tracks well sourced, measurable data on the human condition. From this site, the EPA, the U.S. Geological Survey, the Tax Foundation, and the Energy Information Administration, we know the following for the past couple of decades.

The Environment is Cleaner
• Drinking water quality improved 19% (1993 to 2008).
• Ambient carbon monoxide fell 74% (1990 to 2010).
• Ground level ozone fell 22% (1990 to 2010).
• Lead fell 85% (1990 to 2010).
• Particulate matter dropped 38% (1990 to 2010).

The Nation is Safer
• Work fatalities dropped 14% (1999 to 2008).
• Rape fell 71% (1990 to 2008).
• Murder fell 43% (1990 to 2008).

Hate is in Decline
• Intimidation of African Americans fell 45% (1996 to 2008).
• Hate crime assault dropped 29% (1996 to 2008).

Lives are Longer and Happier
•Life expectancy at birth increased 4% (1990 to 2010).
•American citizen happiness per the World Values Survey increased 3% (1992 to 2006).

We are More Productive
• Productivity per hour worked increased 43%
(1990 to 2010).
• The food production index is up 42% (1990 to 2009).

We are Wealthier
• GDP per person increased 33% (1990 to 2010).
• Single family home floor space increased 17% (1990 to 2010).
• Spending on food as a percent of disposable income dropped 15% (1990 to 2010).
• Spending on the basics decreased 16% (1990 to 2010).
• Use of the Internet has increased from 1 to 74 out of 100 people (1990 to 2010).
• Use of mobile phones has increased from 2 to 90 out of 100 people (1990 to 2010).

We Use Resources More Efficiently
• Energy consumption for each dollar of GDP produced is 29% lower (1990 to 2010).
• Energy use per person fell 6% (1990 to 2010).
• Water use per person fell 15% (1990 to 2005).

Energy is More Abundant
• Proven domestic oil reserves increased 33% (1990 to 2013).
• Proven domestic natural gas reserves increased 99% (1990 to 2013).

Government is the Unfortunate Exception

•Government effectiveness declined 16% (1996 to 2010).
•Regulatory quality fell 9% (1996 to 2010).
•Top personal marginal tax rates increased 41% (1990 to 2013).
•Economic freedom declined 7% (1990 to 2010).

What’s remarkable is that despite an increasingly burdensome government, just about every aspect of American life has improved over the past couple of decades.  Our country is healthier. We live longer. We’re happier. 

There is less violence and hate.  We’re more productive, efficient, and wealthy. Natural resources are abundant.
Not only have things gotten better in America, they are continuing to get better. There may be ebbs and flows, but the trend is clear. Each decade is better than the one preceding it.  

Ignore the negative.  Focus on the good.  Invest in your business. Build your business. Prosper.  

Matt Michel is CEO of the Service Roundtable, an organization founded to help contractors improve their sales, marketing, operations, and profitability. Visit and for more information. Or, call 877-262-3341 and ask how you can become more prosperous.

For a free copy of Matt Michel’s audio CD, “Staying Positive in a Negative World,” contact the Service Roundtable Success Team at 877-262-3341.

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