Some things in the world appear to be changing rapidly, yet one should focus on the big picture. Magic is the art of deception. This video takes the trick out of the magic and yet still amazes.
After watching this, think about your own perceptions as filtered through the media's "today" focus. My suggestion for information is a healthy diet of 1 part news :3 parts book, research and exposure to other fields of thought in order to maintain perspective.
This is part of a series in Wired magazine on Magic and cognitive science that is well worth considering.
The point is that we hold our cognitive skills in greater esteem than they deserve. Reality is a perception.
Consider these perception biases when seeing reports from whatever captures the media's attention today or this millisecond. While focusing on a few billion $'s of losses or bailouts sloshing around here or there, the background of many developed countries "dependancy ratios" have changed significantly in the last 30 years. Here is a little snippet from an older Harvard Business article.
Demographics are mostly inevitable, but discussing a dependency ratio that moves at a constant rate hardly merits CNBC's attention. My bias is for Charlie Rose interviews which offer more considered views on serious matters.
Our current economic issues are happening to a country and world that is slightly different than the 1930's etc. That chart of this bubble or that bust should be considered interesting, but limited.
The big picture is changing drastically and yet attention and energy is focused on the current day to day details. Enjoy the economic show, as taxpayers we all paid for premium tickets, but what happens to automakers and the major banks is really just a sideshow in the context of the next 20 years.