• Books
  • October6th

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    So I’m starting a book this evening entitled “The Rational Optimist.”

    Every week or every couple of days, I will post a summary and review of each chapter that I’ve finished. I probably won’t be reading this book too fast since school has finally started and I’ve got my assigned readings to do, as well. But I will try my best to post as often as I can to update progress on this book.

    I was recommended this book by Amazon based on my previous purchases. The title immediately caught my eye because I would like to think that I am a “rational optimist” – I have faith in society as a whole, and the influx of bad news on our computers and televisions is only a single part of the larger picture. Below I’ve included a blurb about the book – maybe you’d like to read it with me?

    “A counterblast to the prevailing pessimism of our age, and proves, however much we like to think to the contrary, that things are getting better.

    Over 10,000 years ago there were fewer than 10 million people on the planet. Today there are more than 6 billion, 99 per cent of whom are better fed, better sheltered, better entertained and better protected against disease than their Stone Age ancestors. The availability of almost everything a person could want or need has been going erratically upwards for 10,000 years and has rapidly accelerated over the last 200 years: calories; vitamins; clean water; machines; privacy; the means to travel faster than we can run, and the ability to communicate over longer distances than we can shout.

    Yet, bizarrely, however much things improve from the way they were before, people still cling to the belief that the future will be nothing but disastrous.┬áIn this original, optimistic book, Matt Ridley puts forward his surprisingly simple answer to how humans progress, arguing that we progress when we trade and we only really trade productively when we trust each other.”


    – Ross