For John, BLUF: Things are actually getting better, not worse. Nothing to see here; just move along.
From Slate dot Com we have a piece, "The World Is Not Falling Apart". The subheadline is "Never mind the headlines. We’ve never lived in such peaceful times." The authors are Professor Steven Pinker and Professor Andrew Mack.
Here is a summary paragraph:
The world is not falling apart. The kinds of violence to which most people are vulnerable—homicide, rape, battering, child abuse—have been in steady decline in most of the world. Autocracy is giving way to democracy. Wars between states—by far the most destructive of all conflicts—are all but obsolete. The increase in the number and deadliness of civil wars since 2010 is circumscribed, puny in comparison with the decline that preceded it, and unlikely to escalate.This is not to say we could not have another tragedy like August of 1914, but the fact is the trend lines suggest the world is less violent. Problems need to be fixed in the new year, but we are not in the pit of evil and descending further. We are in a world that is improving.
Hat tip to Ann Althouse.
Regards — Cliff