In the long run, the future is bright

Given how gloomy we can often become here, this video from the BBC is worth a look:

It shows a happy story of increasing wealth and health across the globe and makes it clear just how fast the so-called emerging nations are catching up with the developed. If you live in some rural areas of China, you might have a living standard roughly in line with that of Ghana. But if you live in Shanghai, odds are you live as well as the average Italian (or as the average Italian lives for now…).

Clearly we can’t assume a straight line to riches for all – things always go wrong in the short and medium term – but it doesn’t seem unreasonable to think that the longer term trend to better global living standards will hold.