USA State Of Optimism: Introduction

10.10.2016

Written By: Sidi Lemine

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The election is looming and whichever side of the fence you’re on, there’s cause to be worried, right? And if you’ve been reading business news in the last few years, you have read about China’s ascension to power. A lot. You have read about it so much, actually, that you might begin to think that it already sits comfortably at the top of the table, and that we have already transitioned into a world led from Beijing, and that the United States have fallen back with the rest of the world in a community of average nations striving in a tight race. Is there reason for American optimism?

This may or may not come to pass in the near future, but the fact is that it hasn’t happened yet. The USA are still by far the world’s largest economy, sitting at seventeen trillion dollars versus China’s ten; and at $51,759, the US average income is no less than twelve times the Chinese one. The five top companies by market capitalisation are not Chinese, but American: Apple, Microsoft, Exxon, Berkshire Hathaway, Google. All share a common culture of dynamism, expansion, aggressive innovation, and a sheer talent for survival that is practically unknown in other countries.

The recent iPhone 7 launch, still the biggest tech launch globally
The recent iPhone 7 launch, still the biggest tech launch globally

With the discourse about America’s demise comes another gross mischaracterisation: that Americans themselves are depressed, pessimistic, and all about the doom and gloom. Headlines about both Trump and Clinton supporters depict each camp as defensive, put upon, and scared of the alternative. But our experience in the country paints a different picture. BAMM has been talking to everyday Americans in 28 states in the last year, and the only constant we’ve seen is a feeling of growing optimism, rain or shine. The American Dream, the Frontier Spirit, and Better Tomorrows are not vain words in the heart of Americans.

A trucker in Ohio stands proudly next to his recently painted vehicle. He loves his job and the freedom it gives him.
A trucker in Ohio stands proudly next to his recently painted vehicle. He loves his job and the freedom it gives him.

From truckers to bankers, from hipsters to farmers: again and again they tell us about their efforts to make life better for themselves and their own. They express hope, and dedication, and self-reliance. Our experience with American people is that all believe they are going to win, and that their hard work will finally change things for the better. They believe they live in a historical moment, and that the wrongs of the past are about to get righted.

And as a dynamic, active, optimistic country, the United States are still the “Leader of the Free World”. When and how was Li Kequiang selected as Chinese Premier? Unless you are Chinese or live in China, chances are you don’t really know. But wherever you live, we’re willing to bet you have an opinion on the US presidential race. The world is still following the US in technology, in finance, military, fashion, food trends, art, business practices, ideology. Stay with us in the coming weeks as we take you on a road trip through the US on a journey of optimism.

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