Coffee some thoughts on how it drove progress
The Arabs, and the Turks popularized coffee, and when they were the biggest consumers they ruled the world. When coffee entered Europe, specifically Germany, France and Holland in the 1600's people were consuming large amounts of alcohol every day. Some research suggest 8 bottles of wine a day, with children also drinking, it was so common.
Is it not interesting that with the spread of coffee and coffee houses through out Europe so too spread science, art and technology? It makes sense that replacing 8 litres of a bad brew resulted in more cognitive ability, since the mind was not permanently dulled by this total abuse of alcohol.
Look at the fact that people were so driven to almost rely on alcohol from day to day, you would think this lesson would be learnt by the so called conquerors of the world, or western man, when they introduce the locals to alcohol.
The main reason why the colonised have not risen up is because they suffer the same problem Europe suffered in the 1600's and that is they rely on alcohol rather than a stimulating beverage like coffee.
Perhaps since Christianity and colonisation went hand in hand the priests never forgave the Pope (Pop Clement VIII) for not banning coffee when it came to Europe, when they begged that it be banned, and instead he decided he liked it to much to ban it. So when they came with the colonists they did not introduce the locals to coffee, rather alcohol since then they could not be saved.
The British where the biggest drinkers first, and they were the first to start applying the new knowledge, it was only the coffee house proprietor that found tea easier to make than coffee, and the fact that English money was being made from the tea roots, that caused the coffee houses eventually to close, which then become the opium dens and then the public houses.
The London stock exchange had just been established and coffee houses helped drive public investment through sober mines, rather than inebriated brains. Lloyds of London was initially established as a coffee shop first where captains met.
When England converted to tea, it was driven by the fact that Tea was easier to make than coffee. Coffee had to be roasted then ground and then brewed, while tea was already dried by the time it landed. This laziness I believe has perpetuated the English mentality and explains why they have slowly but surely become less and less significant, and it is only the fact they control the world for over 50 years, that they are still relevant. America which has been fuelled by coffee, since the Boston Tea party, was the first colony to rise up against the English, and perhaps coffee had something to do with that too.