(Via PJ Media) There are some weeks when you know it’s the 21st century not because the last seven days are markedly different from its immediate predecessor, but that a confluence of stories news stories emphasize how different the problems — and the opportunities — of the current age have become.
Think about it.
A major league baseball game played to an empty stadium, but most of the audience could still watch it. An American billionaire space entrepreneur has launched a tourist spacecraft from a Texas spaceport to compete with the one in development from a California spaceport. A probe is nearing Pluto, the last of the “classic nine” planets to be visited. Then it will be on its way to the Kuiper Belt objects beyond Pluto.
Another American space billionaire has announced consumer energy storage device that promises a limited amount of independence from the grid. Microsoft has launched an augmented reality product that will superimpose holographic images on the “real world”. Robots are now commonplace. Perhaps most fascinating of all, a research group at NASA claims it has asserted that propellantless drive works — although very serious questions remain over whether the results are a false positive or even fraudulent. However if it’s real then the articles point out that we will be able to travel to other planets in weeks, rather than years.
But here to remind us there’s another side to the 21st century are demands by Muslims for a “right of return” to Spain, because their medieval ancestors were unlawfully dispossessed.
The Atlantic says studies show that the millenial generation will be relatively childless, saying that “today’s twentysomethings have a lower birthrate than any previous generation. … For Hispanic and black women, the majority of the fertility decline was explained by falling birth rates among unmarried women. … For white women, though, the story was very different: ’81 percent of the decrease in fertility is attributable to declining marriage rates.’”
In Baltimore, employment is as low as the murder rate is high. Not a single Fortune 500 company is headquartered there. If the 21st century is here, they haven’t gotten the word.
It seems as Dickens put it, “the worst of times and the best of times”. A time of divergence. A moment when people are going backward while some are looking forward. (continue reading)