Zap Branigan wrote:
War like poverty, disease etc will always be with us.
For poverty and diseases, we’re heading in the right way. Being poor in 2007, at least in the west, is a lot easier than being poor in the 1400s anywhere.
A whole bunch of previously fatal diseases are now pretty much distant memories; I’m pretty sure we’ll get’em all (or close to it) eventually.
War is bit more problematic, because it too has made progress. Not in that we’re having less of them or are waging them better, but in the sense that as technology progresses, it becomes easier for smaller and smaller groups of people to kill large groups of people.
In medieval times, it was very hard for 1 individual to threaten many others. Nowadays, with explosives, a single individual can kill hundreds, even thousands of others. Extrapolating from that leads to the eventual situation where single people might be able to hold millions hostages (bio/chem weapon in major city, for example).
So while poverty and disease might always be with us, their influence on life is diminishing as time goes by. War, in the large sense of violence done to men by men, is heading in the opposite direction.
Being poor now is probably easier then being rich in the 1400’s.