Below is an article sent to me by my brother-in-law that I found interesting. My thoughts on it follow.
In November 2000, the United States held a presidential election, and nobody knew who won, so we just kind of made up an outcome and tried to act like that was normal. Less than a year later, airplanes flew into office buildings, and everybody cried for two months. And then Enron went bankrupt, and the U.S. started acting like a rogue state, and "The Simple Life" premiered, and gasoline became unaffordable, and our Olympic basketball team lost to Puerto Rico, and we reelected the same president we never really elected in the first place.
Later, there would be some especially devastating hurricanes and three Oscars for an especially bad movie called "Crash." Things, as they say, have been better. I'm only 33 years old, so I'll concede that my life experience is limited. But the past five years have been an especially depressing stretch to be an American, and I don't think many people of any age would disagree with that sentiment (except for maybe Kelly Clarkson ... things seem to be working out OK for her). If it's the era of anything, it's the Era of Predictable Disillusionment: a half-decade in which many long-standing fears about how America works (and what America has come to represent) were gradually -- and then suddenly -- hammered into the collective consciousness of just about everyone, including all the people who hadn't been paying attention to begin with.
I have actually been thinking along the same lines as this article for a while. In my opinion we are kind of in a dark time right now in the country and world. Not only are all the natural disasters wreaking havoc on many parts of the world, but political correctness and bipartisan politics are skewing peoples views and taking us farther and farther from the "Truth".
Also, I have noticed that there is a marked lack of creativity in most of the common artistic medias (film, music, TV, liturature, advertising). All we see are sensationalistic CGI imagery, catchy jingles and manufactured not-so-real reality TV. Less and less thought is put into producing TV, movies and music, so we end up with cardboard versions of whatever fad happens to be popular this week. Have you noticed how most of the movies coming out lately are remakes of older movies, TV shows or books? No original ideas.
And although technology is advancing steadily, we have yet to find many good uses for a lot of it. Sure the iPod and cell phone are fun to play with, but do they really serve any useful, real purpose. I am hoping that maybe the next generation will bring a fresh perspective and we will begin to see some new, innovative ideas that will change our society for the better, not just entertain us for a moment or two.
Anyway, my two cents.