These are not the best of times, but perspective is always a good thing. I just heard a radio interview with Nicholas Eberstadt on his book, The Poverty of the Poverty Rate: Measure and Mismearure of Material Deprivation in Modern America. There are various accounts of this nature (see, for example, Cox and Alam), but the message bears repeating. It is amazing how ill-informed the complainers are.
I can remember when Europeans scoffed at American coffee, wine, food, etc., with some justification. Much of that has changed and high-end bourbon, tequila, scotch and vodka are even found in super market liquor departments.
But what about beer? The local stuff was always an embarrassment and the Europeans were right. But apparently no more. The current New Yorker includes "A Better Brew: The rise of extreme beer." And it's manufactured in the U.S. (and without the benefit of the Washington protectionists.)
Get this. "In 1965, the U.S. had a single craft brewey: Anchor Steam in San Francisco. Today there are nearly 1,500."
It was bound to happen. Declinists, take note.