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Social and economic progress in the US and the enormous difference in US and European working hours

NY Times Columnist Brooks writes about progress in the US and compares US and European working hours and vitality. 

The average American works 350 hours a year (=9-10 weeks) longer than the average European. "The gap between American and European G.D.P. per capita has widened over the past two decades, and at the moment American productivity rates are surging roughly 5 percent a year." Since the mid-1980’s

American life has improved in almost every measurable way, and far from regressing toward the mean, the U.S. has become a more exceptional nation. The drop in crime rates over the past decade is nothing short of a miracle. Teenage pregnancy and abortion rates rose in the early 1970's and 1980's, then leveled off and now are dropping. Child poverty rates have declined since the welfare reform of the mid-1990's. The black poverty rate dropped 'to the lowest rate ever recorded.'

While in US the median age is projected to be 35 years in 2050, the median age in Europe will be 52, i.e. the US will be much younger than Europe and enjoy much more economic vitality.


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