El realismo del optimismo mundial

PRAGA – Si uno lee el diario o ve el noticiero de la tarde en la televisión, el mundo siempre parece empeorar. Cada problema se destaca. Entre más muerte, destrucción y desesperación, mejor. Como se señala en un libro de texto danés de periodismo: “Las historias buenas son a menudo las malas noticias.”

En raras ocasiones se transmiten historias inspiradoras y de progreso. Cuando es el caso, se siente como un placer culposo. En consecuencia, pensamos a menudo que el mundo empeora cada vez más de lo que realmente es –aunque creamos que nuestras propias vidas mejoran.

Analicemos lo siguiente: desde 1978 se ha preguntado a los consumidores estadounidenses si su situación financiera actual está mejor o peor que la del año previo. En los últimos 25 años, un promedio de 38% respondió que estaba mejor, mientras que 32% dijo que estaba peor. Sin embargo, cuando se les planteó la misma pregunta pero sobre el conjunto de la economía de dicho país, un promedio de 47% señaló que estaba peor, respecto a un 38% que la consideraba mejor. La mayoría de las personas creen que sus vidas mejoran, mientras que otros piensan que empeoran, tal vez por el sesgo persistente de los periodistas hacia las malas noticias.

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