The other interesting item was an article discussing the massive improvements made in Russia's economy over the last decade. I think the following table conveys just how far they have come.
Russia Making ProgressOn a personal level, this table remindeds me complaining is an unjustified personal indulgance. Despite Russia's monumental progress in just one decade, looking their current conditions illustrates how U.S. citizens have so very much more than the vast majority of the world's population. All of which makes me want to ask, "By what standard does anyone in this country have the to complain?"
Residential space per person 172 sq. ft. 217 sq. ft. Percentage of housing with: Running water 66 73 Hot water 51 59 Central heat 64 73 Percentage of people with: Private-sector jobs 20 55 Television sets 37 64 VCRs and video cameras 0 20 Telephones 14 24 Cell phones 0 12 Personal computers 3 10 Internet service (at home) 0 4 Passenger cars 7 14 Russian tourists traveling abroad 1.6 million 4.6 million Listed domestic companies 0 214 As percentage of GDP: Market capitalization of listed companies 0 53 Value of publicly traded stocks 0 10 Bank credit to private sector 0 21
Sure, we want more. Sure, we need to work on improving injustice wherever we find it. But come on, our cars are better equiped than most of their homes!