Der Realismus des globalen Optimismus

PRAGUE – Man braucht nur eine Zeitung zu lesen oder die Nachrichten zu sehen, um den Eindruck zu gewinnen, es sei immer schlechter um die Welt bestellt. Ein Problem nach dem anderen wird beleuchtet. Je mehr Tod, Zerstörung und Verzweiflung, desto besser. Wie ein dänischer Journalist jüngst formulierte: „Eine gute Geschichte ist normalerweise eine schlechte Nachricht.“

Nur höchst selten erfahren wir, dass die Dinge besser laufen. Wenn dies geschieht, freuen wir uns, aber wir fühlen uns auch gleichzeitig schuldig. Also denken wir oft, dass sich die Welt in einem schlechteren Zustand befindet, als es tatsächlich der Fall ist – selbst wenn wir denken, dass sich unser eigenes Leben verbessert.

Nehmen wir folgendes Beispiel: Seit 1978 werden amerikanische Konsumenten gefragt, ob ihre aktuelle finanzielle Situation besser oder schlechter ist als im Jahr zuvor. In den vergangenen 25 Jahren haben durchschnittlich 38 Prozent angegeben, dass es ihnen besser ginge, gegenüber 32 Prozent, denen es schlechter ging. Aber wenn dieselbe Frage über die allgemeine wirtschaftliche Situation der USA gestellt wird, geben 47 Prozent an, die Wirtschaft habe sich verschlechtert, verglichen mit 38 Prozent, die der Meinung sind, der Wirtschaft gehe es besser. Mehr Menschen denken, ihr Leben verbessere sich, während es anderen schlechter gehe, möglicherweise weil sie dem ständigen Einfluss von Journalisten ausgesetzt sind, die schlechte Nachrichten verbreiten.

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