We Lead the World in Only Three Categories: 1) Number of Incarcerated Citizens Per Capita; 2) Number of Adults Who Believe Angels Are Real; and 3) Defense Spending
Published by James Bouder
June 26, 2012
Beginning scene of the new HBO series, The Newsroom explaining why America's Not the Greatest Country Any Longer...But It Can Be.
Jeff Daniels character:
"There is absolutely nothing to support the statement that we're the greatest country in the world. We're 7th in literacy, 27th in math, 22nd in science, 49th in life expectancy, 78th in infant mortality, 3rd in median household income and number 4 in labor force and number 4 in exports.
"We lead the world in only three categories: 1) Number of incarcerated citizens per capita; 2) Number of adults who believe angels are real; and 3) Defense spending, where we spend more than 26 countries, combined - 25 of whom are allies - I know this isn't the fault of a 20 year old college student but you're in one of the worst generation period. Period. Ever! Period! So, when you ask, 'What makes us the greatest country in the world? I don't what the f*ck you're talking about. Yosemite?
"But it sure used to be...we stood up for what was right. We fought for moral reasons, we passed laws, struck down laws for moral reasons, we waged wars on poverty - not poor people.
"We sacrificed. We cared about our neighbors, we put our money where our mouths were. We never beat our chests. We built great things, made ungodly technological advances, explored the universe, cured disease; cultivated the world's greatest artists and the world's greatest economy. We reached for the stars. Acted like men. Aspired to intelligence; we didn't belittle it - it didn't make us feel e didn't identify ourselves by who we voted for in the last election - and we didn't scare so easy.
"We were able to be all these things and to do all these things because we were informed - by great men - men who were revered.
"First step in solving any problem is recognizing there is one: America is not the greatest country in the world, anymore."