Renowned investor Warren Buffett has a message for presidential candidates lamenting the supposed decline of the country: the United States is better than ever.
The billionaire stock picker waded into the campaign Saturday in an annual letter to shareholders of his holding company Berkshire Hathaway by dismissing what he called a "negative drumbeat."
"It's an election year, and candidates can't stop speaking about our country's problems -- which, of course, only they can solve," the 85-year-old philanthropist wrote, without naming names.
"Many Americans now believe that their children will not live as well as they themselves do. That view is dead wrong," he said.
Babies born in the United States today are actually the "luckiest crop in history," he added.
"For 240 years it's been a terrible mistake to bet against America, and now is no time to start," said the man called the "Oracle of Omaha" after his hometown in the midwestern state of Nebraska.
"America's golden goose of commerce and innovation will continue to lay more and larger eggs."
The candidates in the Republican primary race have, in particular, painted a picture of a fading superpower, famously summarized in property magnate Donald Trump's slogan: "Make America great again/"
Buffet -- the world's third-richest man in 2015, according to Forbes Magazine -- has publicly backed Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.
Buffett's annual shareholders' letter is widely read thanks to his hugely successful investing record, ability to distill complicated subjects and dispensing of home truths.
Berkshire Hathaway -- which employs more than 350,000 people in the insurance, railroad and many other firms it controls -- also holds large stakes in Coca-Cola, IBM and other companies.
The octogenarian also revealed a secret of his longevity in his letter.
During Berkshire Hathaway's upcoming shareholders' meeting, he would consume enough Coke and candy "to satisfy the weekly caloric needs of an NFL lineman," he said.
"There's nothing like eating carrots and broccoli when you're really hungry," he added, "and want to stay that way."