On a related note, studies have shown that many people can't really appreciate the impact of compound interest. If you put $10,000 into the account of your newborn grandchild and made 10% a year on that investment, by 50 that grandchild would have one million dollars. If you didn't give them the money until they retired at 67, they'd have $6 million. If you made them wait until 100 (assuming great gains in longevity), they'd have $137 million. The way that compound interest begins to escalate is hard to conceive, but of course it makes a dramatic difference in lifestyles for capitalist countries that make progress each year, even if that progress doesn't seem particularly dramatic at the time.
And that might be one reason why people are so unimpressed with economic progress. At any given instant - any year or sometimes even decade - the progress we make may not seem impressive. Even if we're making the right moves, today doesn't seem any different from yesterday.
We (rightfully) project the long-term impact of carbon emissions and what that will mean for global temps. That is sort of mind-boggling because it shows us the long-term impact of incremental change. But if incomes raise as much in the 21st century as they did in the last, median household income (adjusted for inflation) will be about $300,000, a projection as valid even if less bandied about.