I heard this speech/lecture a couple days ago and found it interesting, relevant, and inspiring. While much of it may seem like common sense, it still conveys an important point. It's 20 minutes long, so you might want to wait until you have some time if you choose to watch it. http://www.ted.com/index.php/talks/barry_schwartz_on_our_loss_of_wisdom.html
I don't start many topics, but I definitely thought this was worth sharing...good stuff for pessimists and optimists alike.