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It's not the end, it's the beginning

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I’m reading a book about the next hundred-million U.S. citizens, who will give us a net population of close to a half-billion souls by 2050. (I won’t give away the title of the book — that way I can review it in an upcoming column.)

Did you know that the United States represents 24% of the global economy? It may be that the best place to invest — contrary to popular opinion (overseas, overseas, overseas!) — is the good old U.S. of A.

Speaking of overseas, did you know that many economies — China included — have much lower per-capita birth rates than the U.S.? Europe? Fuggedaboud it — even Italy is in the doldrums, birth-wise.

Another thing — one broadcasting conglomerate and its stars are making fortunes by reminiscing about the past and denigrating new changes in American social, political and business life. There are enough people who remember the America of the 1950s — soda parlors and sock hops — to support a yearning for the past and add to the coffers of a few broadcast personalities. Wake up! We have a black president, a vastly different economy and a readjusting world. The U.S. is built on rapid change and we do it better than any country; even though it may seem madding slow at times. Everything in the U.S. will ultimately get and be better, even if “better” is different. A country cannot import people from different cultures and itself not be changed. The 1950s had a war (the comedian, Mort Sahl, referred to the Korean conflict as World War 2.4, as I remember), but even if, absent Korea, the rest of the decade had been idyllic, it led us to the rebellions and assassinations of the 1960s.

As time recedes, we remember the good things and forget the bad. It was in the 1950s that schoolchildren (I was one!) were taught to hide under desks to survive a nuclear attack. And in the 1950s and 1960s, we were probably closer to nuclear war that at any time since.

So, we will grow while China, India and Japan eventually shrink. Not to take away from the tiger countries, but projections say that the U.S. will have 20% of its multi-cultural, multi-colored citizens over 65 in 2050, while other countries will have 50/50 ratios of those over 65 to those under. We are going to have higher per-capita birth rates than most countries. Many from around the world will wish to live here. We will still be an engine of growth, education and freedom.

Something unrelated to think about: It has been postulated that the U.S. government lived on alcohol-tax revenue until 1913. Due to prohibition, the federales had to create an income tax in order to continue to receive financial support.

Have a great week. Do good things.

Check out more blog entries from Richard Hoe.