DESPITE WHAT YOU may have read lately, the United States continues to be Number One - in a host of different ways.
It would be easy to believe the United State is on its knees judging from much of what is being written these days. That simply is just not the case.
Since it is the week of our Independence Day, I figured it would be a good time to list just a few of the positive ways in which we still lead the world. The list could have been longer, much longer, but the boss would like me to get on the telephone.
So here are just a few of the reasons we all should feel good this week about where we are fortunate enough to call home:
- Economy: The United States continues to have the largest economy in the world by a lot and that will remain so for some time to come. In 2011, the U.S. Gross Domestic Product was $14.870 trillion. China is in second place with less than half that amount at $5.879 trillion.
- Entrepreneurship: Consider this: Between 1996 and 2004, U.S. entrepreneurs created an average of 550,000 small businesses every month. Among the reasons pointed to for our entrepreneurial success pointed to in an article in The Economist include the world's most mature venture-capital industry, a close relationship between our universities and industry and an open immigration policy.
- Household Wealth: According to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, average household wealth in the United States is the highest in the world, averaging at $102,000. Switzerland is second at $95,000.
- Space: Despite concerns the United States is turning its back on its space program, America remains ahead of every other country when it comes to exploring space. Some point to China as an example of another country challenging the United States in the "final frontier." Consider this: China just put its first woman in space this year. We did so in 1983. China hopes to land a man on the moon by 2020. We accomplished that task in 1969.
- Higher Education: In an article in the Huff Post, the United States leads 48 surveyed countries in the quality of its higher education system.
- Foreign Investment: Area Development reports that foreign nations continue to invest more in the U.S. than in any other country.
- Tourist Destination: We are big, beautiful and attract more tourists than anywhere else in the world.
- Marriage: Americans get married (and divorced) at a higher rate than any other people in the world. According to the Huff Post, 9.8 out of every 1,000 people in the United States get married every year.
- Cancer Care: According to the National Center for Policy Analysis, cancer survival rates for both men and women are higher in the United States than anywhere else in the world. The United States also ranks highest in all health care spending.
Other categories in which the United States leads the world is in wine consumption (3.7 billion bottles in 2011), its political system is the most imitated, its music the most listened to, its movies and television the most watched and its publications the most read. Despite its problems, the U.S. Postal Service is ranked top in the world by the Oxford Strategic Consulting, General Motors, not Toyota is the world's leading auto manufacturer and the United States generates more energy from wind than any other country.
The list can go on and on but I run out of time. Suffice it to say that while plenty of categories can be found where the United States no longer is number one, the fact is that in many ways of measuring such things, the United States remains the Number One place in the world.
So there you go. I don't know about the rest of you, but I will continue to view us as a bunch of winners and I shall continue to root for the home team.
Go America ...