sunflower.jpgTime magazine named this “The Decade From Hell”. The sensationalist headline ignores all the good things that happened, so we, at the Good News Network, shall remind them. Tomorrow we will publish the Top 10 Good News Stories of 2009, and if that list is any indication, we have much more to celebrate about the decade, than to complain about…

First is what didn’t happen in 2000. People were concerned that Y2K would shut down the world. It never happened and the new millenium dawned without incident.

Second, in countries like India, Venezuela, and Brazil, anti-poverty moves are lifting thousands of people into a better life.

Diseases like measles, Hansens Disease (leprosy), Guinea Worm, and polio may be on the brink of extinction, thanks to new efforts by the UN and the Carter Center. Plans were made this decade to wipe out malaria in Africa and the Caribbean by 2012, with huge progress tracked in the last two years.

Overall, 10,000 fewer children (aged five and under) are dying every day compared to 1990. By one count, every 11 seconds, a child has been saved, thanks to new efforts in the fields of health and hunger.

Charitable giving by families and individuals has been steadily rising in ten years. Nations have donated millions to the poor and needy, especially in times of natural disaster. In the wake of a hurricane in New Orleans and Tsunami in Indonesia, the giving – corporate, governmental and private — soared to unheard of generous levels.

Wars have ended in places like Sierra Leone, Liberia, and South Sudan. The US and Russia have reduced nuclear arms — and plan to do more.

At the beginning of this decade, there was no Wikipedia, no YouTube, no blogs. The internet has revolutionized the way political campaigns are run, and now, small donors have a bigger voice in the process. Raising millions in a single day via online donations is keeping politicians more honest and transparent.

Do you ever wish that you lived in the world of the 1960s, or the days of Charles Dickens, or Shakespeare? Forgetting the fact that in many ways life was depressing back then, we’ve just passed through a great burst of culture this decade. Books, songs, plays, and movies by small and independent artists have more easily become hits.

Negative people avoid good news like a vampire avoids sunlight, but if they look at the decade objectively they may see that many of us, maybe most of us, have never had it so good.


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