Despite the fact that my family classify me as a "doom and gloomer", I actually think that I have a naive optimistic view of the world. That partly comes from being a baby boomer - growing up in the fifties and sixties of the 20th century, it seemed that the normal course of events in the world was for things in general to get better. In the UK we had free schooling, free healthcare from the National Health Service and in the sixties The Beatles, the Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Radio Luxembourg and stereo record players. And it was possible to hitch-hike from my home in Edinburgh to the south of France.
The only serious doom and gloom bit that I recall was a few days around the Cuban Missile Crisis when I was outside school looking up at the sky and wondering whether there were actually US and Soviet nuclear bombs being delivered over our heads by ICBM. Well, of course, there was the assassination of John Kennedy. That was a serious break in the everything gets better all the time trend.
Anyway, three news items last weekend put me into a doom and gloom perspective on world affairs:
The Bush regime has the characteristics of a Mafiosi organization
But, somehow, the extensive matter of fact inventory of known evidence wiped away all hope that somehow things might come right in the USA, in the end.