"We've had a number of recessions in this country; in fact, we had a Great Depression, we had world wars. And throughout, the genius of the American economy, our emphasis on a meritocracy and a market system and a rule of law has enabled generation after generation to live better than their parents did. And, I mean, most of the people in this room, practically all of them last night, lived better than John D. Rockefeller lived. I mean, all kinds of things have happened. And in the 20th century alone, the standard of living of the average American went up seven for one. There's never been a period like it in history. And that's not an accident. It's because we unleash human potential and will continue to do that in the future."
--Warren Buffett, in a 3-hour CNBC Interview