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Old 03-11-2010, 04:48 PM
 
Location: Approximately 50 miles from Missoula MT/38 yrs full time after 4 yrs part time
2,308 posts, read 4,121,934 times
Reputation: 5025

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Well Gentlemen (specifically AzHiker & LordBalfor), I just finished reading this entire thread and feel compelled to add some of my thoughts, opinions and comments. Please bear in mind that I am of an earlier generation: having graduated grade school in 1946, raised by a single mom from the mid 1940's on, worked my way through college and realized by graduation day that: #1: nobody ever said "life was fair'; #2: there are "no free lunches"; #3: goals achieved by the results of your own efforts, are "priceless" vs___ (you can fill in the blanks); and #4: ...the USA was (and is) the greatest country on earth.

(NOTE: My comments on the various points and questions below, will be inRed.)



Quote:
Originally Posted by azhiker View Post

Let me ask you a question, do you think that America was in better shape 50 years ago,definitely better shape 50 to 60 years ago or today. And given how things were 50 years ago, do you think the future looked brighter for America back then,definitelt brighter back then or now? Based on what I have lived through and observed since 1950....(yes I know that's 60 years), I would "love to turn the clock back"!

Fifty years ago, did the possibility of America becoming third rate/third world even seem like a remote possibility? Absolutely not!! Does that eventuality seem more possible now after 50 years of radical change? Sadly, I have to answer...yes.

Both economically (manufacturing base, debt, unsustainable social programs), and culturally (crime, number of gang members, state of nuclear family, percentage of families with no father around, percentage of kids that are dropouts, would you say that America was relatively better 50 years ago, or today after all these radical changes? Without question...we as a country were FAR better off then vs now: (the one area that is in 'Better shape" today.....is in the field of social justice: i.e. minorities and their opportunities etc.)

There are many areas (far more than back then) that are virtual unsafe no-go areas, that are more reminiscent of the third world than of the America before all the radical changes. I couldn't agree more: During the 1950's my job required me to travel to and frequent neighborhoods in: Chicago, Saint Louis, Newark, Toronto, San Francisco, L.A.; Denver; Portland and others that were large metro areas. I never once had a problem walking to my car after dark, had damage done to my car, or had my car broken into................today I WOULDN'T THINK OF going into those very same neighborhoods without being armed......and definitely wouldn't go after dark, even if I had (2) arms body guards with me!!!!!!!!

I think, logically, it is Orwellian to vilify our forebears for creating a society which was imperfect but nearly preeminent, more functional, and much safer and more civil in most respects, all while glorifying people who radically changed that into something far less functional and dangerous.

As to patriotism, I think a healthy society reveres its ancestral heroes and mythology. A society in decline tears down its institutions and forebears. All I can say in this regard is: " I would love to have everyone who has contributed to the thread, be able to hear KATE SMITH sing "GOD BLESS AMERICA", as I had the priviledge of hearing (many, many times) as a youngster all through the 1940's and beyond. It would make your "hair stand on end!!"

Ok, I'll get off "my soap box now."

P.S. off topic:....if all goes well, I too may be a resident of that country around Sonoita, Elgin & Patagonia.

Last edited by Montana Griz; 03-11-2010 at 04:53 PM.. Reason: THE LAST 5 LINES SHOULD BE IN RED..I goofed, sorry.
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Old 03-12-2010, 12:16 AM
 
Location: West of the Catalinas East of the Tortolitas
4,922 posts, read 8,571,496 times
Reputation: 8044
Quote:
Originally Posted by sickofIL View Post
Yes, I still believe this is the best country to be part of but I believe this could change very rapidly if people do not wake up and take notice. Just as has been discussed here about the Tucson government. People are still voting these same people in every election but then complaining about what these people do.

I just want to know what is wrong with the people that they continue this.
I agree America is the best country. I think that a lot of our country's decline, and that of other industrialized nations, though, is the massive explosion of communication such as the Internet, movies and cable TV. When the US had three networks, and the viewing was very tame, people stayed home as a family to watch that new fangled invention, just as they had listened to radio together earlier. Morality has gone down the sewer, kids are "entitled" (to what, I don't know), sexting, soft porn and idolized, violent, rap stars rule. What used to be an X-rated movie is now PG-13. Professional sports figures are forgiven their moral atrocities and instead are cheered on by the masses. Politicians sink into obscurity until their transgressions are forgotten, and we wonder why the US and other industrialized countries are in decline? Because we glorify bad boys and lust after scantily clad women, both types of which are plastered all over the various forms of media.

So, what does this have to do with Tucson or the Decline and Fall of the American Empire? People are becoming apathetic and desensitized to anything but their own wants and needs. Our City Council takes a wait and see attitude and before they know it, it's up and gone. Spring Training is just one example. It was as if the City Council didn't believe that the Major League teams would actually go to a place that would welcome them and answer their demands. So, as the back door shut, it hit the Council in its' collective backside. As Sick of IL said, the government is in control of what can be built and what it's used for. Who allowed these laws to pass? We did. We elected the City Council. Therefore, we sanctioned their decisions. On a broader scale, we elected America's leaders, congressmen/women, senators and local goverment officals. If we don't like the way the country is going, then we need to vote in change. Again. Unfortunately, that probably won't happen, as it really comes down to which politician has the largest coffers. Money wins. There is no ideology anymore, although each politician may espouse their views as being the change our country needs, can provide for the people, give us a better health care plan, take down our enemies,.....what really elects politicians is money. He who raises the most, gets the vote. There were no hanging chads this time.

There is no way we can stop what has already happened, we can't go back 50 years. Technology will just continue to get better and more mainstream. Kids will emulate their heroes, even if their heroes advocate violence, hatred and disrespect. As soft porn becomes blase on TV through Victoria's Secret ads, or Viagra, beer commercials, K-Y Jelly commercials (my parents are rolling over in their graves right now), kids will take sex for granted, and with that comes an increase in STD's, pregnancy, and irresponsibility.

Yes, lots of kids will still go to college, graduate, go on to become doctors and lawyers and other professionals, but a lot of kids will also drop out, turn to crime or drugs and join gangs. The dropout rate will increase as will those on government assistance, both as a combination of lethary and entitlement or of true need due to extenuating circumstances. As the state of familyhood and morality declines, so does the strength of our country.

I'm sure this post sounds extremely cynical, and it is. But, conversely, I also love America, warts and all, and I wouldn't want to live anywhere else. I'm sure other countries also bemoan their leaders and governmental policies as well. I think we're being pretty egocentric to think that it's just the U.S. that is going through a decline. We may have lost a lot of our Superpower status, but that's because technology has allowed for other countries to accelerate and catch up to us.
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Old 03-14-2010, 09:16 PM
 
Location: Miramar, FL
117 posts, read 286,811 times
Reputation: 64
I thought this thread was about Jets? lol...
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Old 03-14-2010, 10:45 PM
 
Location: Casa Grande, AZ
8,685 posts, read 16,848,232 times
Reputation: 10335
Quote:
Originally Posted by polo708 View Post
I thought this thread was about Jets? lol...
It is ...and Military jets...she is venting and being American, and being frustrated with where things have gone, where they could go, and how things have changed in the past few years since we were kids...I thought she did well
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Old 03-15-2010, 11:42 AM
 
Location: Tucson
522 posts, read 1,568,854 times
Reputation: 705
I think it is still about jets...or military jets. They are one thing that symbolizs our freedom...or what's left of it.

And yes, I love the sound of them. I used to live very near to O'Hare and the sound of the daily jets I just blocked out. But when the occasional military jet flew by I usually ran to see it.

If it wasn't for this and the realated military things along with the brave people that serve in the military, we would be speaking German or japanese.
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Old 03-15-2010, 07:46 PM
 
Location: SW MO
23,593 posts, read 37,471,872 times
Reputation: 29337
Quote:
Originally Posted by JillBoBill View Post
When I was a kid there was Blue Angel's airshows in CA. We used to go see them, but I just don't think that kind of chest-thumping patriotism is very popular anymore. OR, it's very expensive. Maybe both.
It may be more expensive now but it's no less popular where I live. American flags fly in front of many houses. Veteran's Day is celebrated for a week with parades in cities and most towns and villages while restaurant and other discounts and freebies are provided for veterans year-round. The largest town near us has a welcome home garden for veterans on the main drag and when people know you've served they thank you for it.

I love jets because they ARE the sound of freedom and because I grew up on and near Marine Corps and Naval air stations. Military service is a family tradition and not only did my grandfathers, uncles and father serve in war but both my oldest son and I are also combat veterans 30 years apart.

Being well into my 60s I have a lot of memories of the late 40s forward and I think there have certainly been far better times than we're having now or have had for several decades. However, I wouldn't sell this country short quite yet.

Patriotism and pride in America still exist. You might just have to search a little harder for them. That's all!
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Old 03-15-2010, 08:55 PM
 
643 posts, read 2,053,853 times
Reputation: 336
Quote:
Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
Chest-thumping! .....



Patriotism and pride in America still exist. You might just have to search a little harder for them. That's all!


Hahaha, no thanks. I'm all for America, but all that heavy patriotism kind of makes my head spin.
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Old 03-15-2010, 09:42 PM
 
Location: Approximately 50 miles from Missoula MT/38 yrs full time after 4 yrs part time
2,308 posts, read 4,121,934 times
Reputation: 5025
Quote:
Originally Posted by JillBoBill View Post
Hahaha, no thanks. I'm all for America, but all that heavy patriotism kind of makes my head spin.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
It may be more expensive now but it's no less popular where I live. American flags fly in front of many houses. Veteran's Day is celebrated for a week with parades in cities and most towns and villages while restaurant and other discounts and freebies are provided for veterans year-round. The largest town near us has a welcome home garden for veterans on the main drag and when people know you've served they thank you for it.

I love jets because they ARE the sound of freedom and because I grew up on and near Marine Corps and Naval air stations. Military service is a family tradition and not only did my grandfathers, uncles and father serve in war but both my oldest son and I are also combat veterans 30 years apart.

Being well into my 60s I have a lot of memories of the late 40s forward and I think there have certainly been far better times than we're having now or have had for several decades. However, I wouldn't sell this country short quite yet.

Patriotism and pride in America still exist. You might just have to search a little harder for them. That's all!

JillBoBill (mam)............ I'm puzzled as to your response to the post by Crumudgeon. I thought his post was quite 'heart-felt' and representative of those of us who are in our "senior years" and remember when being patriotic and flying the American Flag was the "in thing" and the proper thing to do. I'll be going back to my old home town this summer for my 60th high school reunion, and I know when we start the evening's festivities, the first item on the schedule will be the playing of "God Bless America"--sung by Kate Smith.

We're expecting 28 graduates to attend out of 94 (many are Korean War Vets).... all of us were is grade school during WWII, and remember vividly the "welcome home" parades for returning vets......rest assurred there was a lot of "heavy patriotism" shown by all in attendance. Too bad our country has "strayed from that path".

If I have mis-interpeted (sp?) your response, I am sorry and do not mean to offend......IMHO "heavy patriotism" is the "only-way-to-go!"
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Old 03-15-2010, 10:16 PM
 
Location: SW MO
23,593 posts, read 37,471,872 times
Reputation: 29337
Quote:
Originally Posted by JillBoBill View Post
Hahaha, no thanks. I'm all for America, but all that heavy patriotism kind of makes my head spin.
Jill, does this seem familiar?
Quote:
Tucson, AZ - The mountains are free here.
It should. It's your location, with with emphasis added.

While you're enjoying that freedom you might want to take a moment to ponder upon and thank those who acquired that freedom and have defended it for over 200 years.

It is, indeed, heavy stuff!

One last comment. If your part of the country isn't supporting the Honor Flight Program, it should be. The goal of the National Honor Flight program is to fly over 5000 WWII Veterans to THEIR memorial. The top priority is to fly WWII Veterans and those Korean/Vietnam Veterans dying of a terminal illness to Washington, DC, enabling them to see America’s “Thank You” for their service. This is made possible by individual and corporate donations and provided at no cost to the veterans.

Head-turning indeed!

Last edited by Curmudgeon; 03-15-2010 at 10:29 PM..
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Old 03-15-2010, 11:14 PM
 
Location: West of the Catalinas East of the Tortolitas
4,922 posts, read 8,571,496 times
Reputation: 8044
I've been going to the Colorado Rockie's home games at Hi Corbett, and every game, the A-10's are flying overhead. They're not intrusive at all. Today, there was a KC-135, three C-130's (or the same one three times), a C-5 and a few F-16's from the ANG. People were snapping pictures of them like crazy. Today was a Cub's game (we won!!), so the stadium was full--7,000+ people--and they sang the Star Spangled Banner loudly, cheered on the "boys of summer" in the National Pastime, and snapped pictures of the planes. On Saturday, I'll be cheering on the planes of the air show and Sunday, I'll be at the air show. Yup, I'm a chest thumping patriot and proud of it.

I believe in our military because my great-grandfather and his brother were with the Vermont Volunteers during the Civil War (I have all of my great-grandfather's papers and money from the Civil War), my grandfather graduated from MIT with a degree in Naval Architecture and designed and built warships during WWI (he had polio and couldn't serve so he did the next best thing), my father served in WWII in the European Theater and was part of the forces that liberated Berlin, my son-in-law is currently a Lt. Col. and graduate of the USAFA stationed in Papa, Hungary at the new NATO base. The same is true on my mother's side of the family. All the men are veterans, going back to the Revolutionary War. My father's WWII diary is posted on the 44th Infantry Division website.

I will be going to the air show on Sunday and I will be filled with pride in our military and the men and women who are currently serving. They volunteered to do this for our country, they weren't drafted. Their service is a gift to us and ensures our freedom. So, to the men and women at Ft. Huachuca and D-M, and other military installations around the world, I salute you, and my flag flies proudly for all of you and those who came before you.
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