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Old 05-18-2008, 08:19 PM
Location: Out there somewhere...a traveling man.
41,057 posts, read 51,662,007 times
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Every ERA has had it's trials and tribulations. That dates back to father time. It just gets worse as we progress from generation to generation. The 60's prove that with the downfall of society and the flower power druggie hippie generation and their offspring following suit..
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Old 05-18-2008, 08:39 PM
Location: Boise, ID
1,356 posts, read 5,664,203 times
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Originally Posted by BarbJ View Post
Garson, you took the words out of my mouth. I was paging down through the posts until I got to the end so that I could post essentially what you have said. I was a teenager in the fifties and it was a delightful, hopeful time for me. Very little pressure, prosperity and a carefree life for many of us. But below that carefree exterior there was a lot of unhappiness that was not acknowledged. Today when you read the newspaper you see story after story of child abuse, addiction, infidelity, etc. Very often these are articles dealing with someone's recovery from a serious problem. There was none of this in the fifties - I don't mean that there was none of the child abuse, addiction, infidelity, etc -but rather that there was no acknowledgment that it went on; no public admission. I remember one family that was voted the Family of the Year in my suburb: cookie-baking-golf-playing-stay-at-home-mom, hard working company owning father, high achieving kids, church and country club going family, hospital volunteers all. You name it, if it was good, they did it. It was not until years later that I learned that the parents were both alcoholics, the father abusive, the mother unfaithful, and one child gay. These were things that were not talked about as they are today. As Garson says problems were "just swept under the rug and hidden." It was not an honest nor an open time. On the surface it looked like an easy living time - and it was for many - but for some just as it is today, life was difficult: all the more difficult because there was no one to talk to about the difficulties.
Originally Posted by Yeledaf View Post
Yeah, nobody lies anymore. Or do we just lie about different things?

And things are so much better today. Today:

Don't want a husband? No problem. Have kids without one. The goverment and society cheer you on. Let everyone else take care of the kids when they grow up stunted by not having a father's love. The majority do. Congratulations.

Got drunk and went to bed with a dork? Cry rape the next day. He's toast. You're a victim.

Yammer incessantly about molestation. If it didn't happen, make it up. After all, what should our society talk about? Being good? Don't make us laugh...

Gay? Insist that everyone else share the details of how your problems are their business. They'll act like they care.

The Fifties were a time when people loved each other and kept their mouths shut about their problems once in a while. Glamorization and mouthing off is a today thing -- and it's created the social jungle we live in.
The funny thing is... I think I agree with both of you!
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Old 05-18-2008, 08:46 PM
Status: "Write me in for POTUS" (set 13 days ago)
Location: Near Manito
20,098 posts, read 21,992,891 times
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Originally Posted by BarbJ View Post
According to Yeledaf "The fifties were a great time to be a kid... " I agree with him, but that doesn't mean that they were an honest time. Nor were they a time when people could easily find help for their problems. I think that it was a time when deception and appearances meant more than truth and reality. But it was a great time to be a kid because we didn't really know what was going on. Maybe that was in the end better, but I do have a lot of friends who suffered for what went on in their families but were never able to get help because appearances were so important.
Sometimes life is tough. A lot of what passes for "help" today is little more than ennablement and rationalization. Millions of people walk around zonked on Zoloft in 2008; people drank martinis in the Fifties -- but they knew they were gonna have a hangover. Today we pretend that therapy can be substituted for learning how to live.

Concealing problems, suffering through a bad marriage, to protect children and keep families together was a commonplace in the Fifites. Today the children are pawns to their parents' immaturity. Honest? Maybe. Better than the fifties? Debatable.

I can't get past the notion that a lot of things called problems today are what we used to call life....
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Old 05-18-2008, 09:14 PM
13,699 posts, read 19,837,181 times
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Originally Posted by bchris02 View Post
Ah...I miss the '90s. I think a lot of people are nostalgic for the 1990s and that is helping Hillary's chances.

The '50s and the '90s are really similar decades. They are reletively conservative times of peace and prosperity between the end of a global conflict and the beginning of a decade of social/moral crisis and war.

Pre-1950s: WWII/Korea
Pre-1990s: Cold War/Persian Gulf

Post-1950s: Vietnam/counterculture/sexual revolution
Post-1990s: 9-11/Iraq/culture war/homosexuality/gas prices.
Really a flawed timeline. The Korean War which took about 35,000 American lives occured in the 50's (1950 to 1953). The Vietnam war had it's origins and arguably began in the 50's. The Persian Gulf war occured in the 90's (1991). Gas prices and shorages were more of a crises in the 70's....

And I won't discuss Hillary's chances, or lack of it.
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Old 05-18-2008, 09:57 PM
190 posts, read 631,903 times
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Anyone ever seen the movie "No Down Payment" made in '57 with Joanne Woodward and Tony Randall? Maybe not the greatest but to me it really seems to sum up the 50's.
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Old 05-19-2008, 09:06 AM
1,166 posts, read 3,619,848 times
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Originally Posted by Yeledaf View Post
Sometimes life is tough. A lot of what passes for "help" today is little more than ennablement and rationalization. Millions of people walk around zonked on Zoloft in 2008; people drank martinis in the Fifties -- but they knew they were gonna have a hangover. Today we pretend that therapy can be substituted for learning how to live.

Concealing problems, suffering through a bad marriage, to protect children and keep families together was a commonplace in the Fifites. Today the children are pawns to their parents' immaturity. Honest? Maybe. Better than the fifties? Debatable.

I can't get past the notion that a lot of things called problems today are what we used to call life....
You know, Yeledaf, I agree with what you've said about people staying in a bad marriage for the sake of the kids. It did happen in the fifties and still happens, though not as often, today. I'm not sure which is better - I suspect there are a lot of variables: age of the couple, amount of open hostility, etc. It's not an easy call. I knew a lot of families in the fifties where the hostility was obvious and today the children of those marriages also have failed marriages based on their parents' model. The parents stayed together but to what end? Today there does seem to be a bit more civility to the split-ups. I know a number of families in which joint custody is very civil and, in fact , loving. One family still spends holidays and some weekend vacations together. Both parents carpool and the kids have two homes. Confusing for the kids? Maybe, but better than the constant hostility, I saw in the fifties. What do the rest of you think?
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Old 05-19-2008, 11:54 AM
Location: 32°19'03.7"N 106°43'55.9"W
8,246 posts, read 18,042,719 times
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Originally Posted by Ultrarunner View Post

One of the most striking differences that I notice is the almost absence of stay at home moms today and the number of single parent homes... While not unheard of in the 50's... it certainly was the rare exception... I had one classmate whose father was killed in Korea and she was the only single parent family I knew... I didn't know any where both parents worked full time... although some had mom's that worked part time at the school or did book keeping work from home and these were the same families that always seemed to be going on great vacations every summer and had the new cars and power lawn mowers
This is a BIGGIE, and IMO is not very widely discussed. Our social and moral breakdown has its antecedents in the fact that we are now some generations removed now whereby a parent was a constant presence in the home. Now, two parents are most often REQUIRED to be deployed into the workforce in order to make financial ends meet. Why? Taxes. What you see on your paycheck versus what you gross nowadays has been completely masked by the federal withholding act of 1942. You money disappears before you even see it. In 1967, my dad made $118 gross, and $103 net. My mom stayed home and raised my sister and myself. The margin of taxation on my dad's paycheck is notable: he was taxed 13% on his income. Nowadays, I am taxed 35% on mine.

This is the core reason as to why I believe that anyone who supports socialists who proliferate the Democrat party is content with living off other people's money. In contrast, if you are gainfully employed, you're interests are best served to resist these politicians who believe in confiscating your money before you even see it, and pissing it away.
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Old 07-24-2008, 07:55 AM
Location: Southern Ontario
439 posts, read 498,010 times
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Stay at home mothers didnt just diappear the minute the 50s were over, and were't always at home before the 50s. For decades before many women had to work to survive, in factory or service jobs and their children had to be looked after by realatives or on their own. If you were priveldged and rich, the custom was to have nannys and governessess look after your children, so they didnt see their mothers much.
The 50s have been nostalgasized and people forget that things were not all ideal. A lot of crime got overlooked when the police forces were not connected back then and they worked in their own districts--communications were laughable. I think they had the telephone and a teletype to pass on information. No real forensics either. Plus with prejudice and emotions ruling things, many innocent people were convicted and executed. Child molesters and serial killers had a hey day. Just because we didnt hear about them didnt mean they still werent operating in the shadows and getting away with murder.
I agree that a lot of things were swept under the rug and you were encouraged to move on and forget about it. The decade had a lot of good things too. Peace of sorts, prosperity and ideals, are what we think of about that time.
I wonder what future generations will say about the present time.......
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Old 07-24-2008, 09:33 AM
2,255 posts, read 5,029,658 times
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Originally Posted by bchris02 View Post
Conservatives in America paint a very idealistic picture of the 1950s. To them, this was the peak of American civilization. It was the time when prosperity, the nuclear family, and moral values reigned supreme. How close is this image of the 1950s to how things actually were? Was it really the peak of American society?
Well I'm not going to comment on your Conservative vrs Liberal debate and who has the supreme understanding of the way life should be lived on planet Earth. I don't think either side has a handle on things one way or another except for their hatred of each other which seems to be equally damaging to society and accomplishes nothing.

Now about the 1950s. It was a time of prosperity from a material standpoint after rebuilding effort. Everyone tends to judge things from a materialistic standpoint anyway, so yes it was prosperous for most places in that way. I think when people are nostalgic about the old 1950s automobiles, Diners, Drive-in Theatres, 1950s music, etc, it's not so much those actual things, but the life and people they enjoyed back then. People they knew and people they did'nt. People for the most part treated each other differently, even common courtesy to strangers, things like having manners and such like. There was a movie made in 1978 and star Jason Robards starred in it. Based around that Norman Rockwell painting of 1954 New Mexico and the picture was considered a masterpiece with a boy and his father sitting on the running boards of an old farm truck. What struck me most about the movie was not the story and the actors and how well they played their parts. It was the little tiny things they incorporated into it that brought back to life what it was like in that era. Things like the postman coming by in his little truck with the mail and taking time to chat with the Mrs of the house and how is so & so and what have you. People in town greeting one another respecfully with common courtesy and decency that is sadly lacking today. There was more innocence back then as well as the movie brought out. Well, you'd just have to watch it to know what I mean.

Now on the negative side, there were a lot of good intentions that went bad. Take for example the "Green Revolution". How many of you remember that ? Remember how they were going to feed the world through the various use of chemicals and turn arid deserts into productive farmscapes ? Remember also the negative effects of DDT, Chemical fertilizers with high concentrations of nitrates which poluted waterways. Remember all the birth defects back then in the late 1950s and 60s because they thought they discovered good prenatal drugs for giving pregnant mothers. You really don't see those much anymore, but they were a common occurence when I was a kid. How about the Cold war and Nuclear build up by every greedy nation wanting power ? The greed of Big Business and industrial polution that gave us things like the "Love Canal" , etc.

Well, those are my pros and cons. World certainly isn't a better place today is it. Sadly the protestors of the 60s that drew our attention to many of the negatives have'nt exactly done a better job themselves , have they ?
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Old 07-24-2008, 08:43 PM
2,790 posts, read 5,870,678 times
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I think the 50's were a great time to be a kid, and look how many of us turned out to be liberals! Wonder what the conservatives think about that?
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