what was it even like back then?

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  1. #1
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    what was it even like back then?

    I just finished a general economics class where my professor liked to tell stories like "when I finished college, I bought a car and gas back then was 30 cents!" or "At my first job they paid me $2/ per hour".

    I realize that there is inflation, but even so, 31 cents today is 2 dollars ish a gallon. Most of his stories made me go asdfasfasf regarding our economic situation in the US. But I also liked the ones just about how life was back then.

    So, those of your who are way older than me, what was life and work like when you were younger?

    And for people who are younger than me, I don't even know what it's like to be you either. I hear a lot of people my age say things like "grumble grumble, wahh, kids nowadays!!! Back in the old days...." Even though we're not even that old lawls (I am 22).

    Well this topic is not only for those from the US, if you are from other countries, feel free to share your stories too.

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    Well , i am from the state , that was ruled by communists back then . I was only a little child , when their rule ha ended , but i've listened to the stories of people , that have lived most of their lives then. There was censorship and lack of everything needed , but state took almost all responsibilities for preservation of it's citizens . Education(even higher) and healthcare , though modest, were absolutely free, there was low crime rate ( with exception of corruption ) and people could travel all around the state relatively freely. But the stability of communist rule drove people mad by it's sheer boredom and absence of need for personal responsibility has corrupted their souls . Now my state is capitalistic authoritarian third world nation with huge prospects of eventual extinction of most of the populace and loss of independence .Everything it has is because of these deeds , made in the past.

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    Well, it was WAY easier to get jobs in the early nineties... And up to the mid-nineties, people were absolutely throwing money at new media. That was a great time to be doing anything remotely related to anything digital.

    Rent was probably half what it is now, too... Especially before the stupid luxury condo building spree. (The huge half-empty luxury condos that nobody can actually afford to live in...)

    But the hell with "way back when", I've noticed a sharp increase in the cost of basic items like food in the past decade alone. And since the recent downward spiral of the economy, perfectly intelligent, educated, motivated people have trouble finding so much as a burger-flipping job. And not for lack of trying. Something is wrong with this picture.

    Also I swear the overall weather gets hotter and weirder each year. Not good. 80 degree weather in March at this latitude is messed up, yo.

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    I turned 18 in 1978. The late Seventies was a world of suck. Stagflation, anyone?

    My husband is a decade older than me and British. His earliest memories are rationing and hard times. To this day, we have a room full of toilet paper...just in case.

    The pendulum swings, young man. Between want and prosperity. Between morality and license. Between right and left. Wherever you are, don't get too attached to it.

    I was once on the receiving end of a critique so savagely nasty, I marched straight out of class to the office and changed my major (sketchbook).
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    I used to get pissed watching the news and listening to "experts" talk about the bad economy and how everything was getting worse, etc, around 2007-8.

    I came to the realization that I didn't have a clue what was going on. I didn't understand basic economics. I didn't understand inflation, and why it sucks. Not because prices go up, but the damage it does to the economy. I didn't understand central banking and fractional reserve banking. I didn't understand what is the point of an interest rate. I'd be surprised if one in a hundred people in the United States know the purpose of an interest rate*.

    I realized I was completely oblivious and the talking heads all over the television didn't make any sense. Adjusting percentages and moving this ratio around. It all sounds like gibberish.

    Then I discovered Austrian Economics.

    I used to get pissed because I didn't understand. Now I get pissed because I understand.

    *it correlates time with money.

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    Untill you realize they had it almost exactly the same 100 years ago... and 200 years ago... and 300 years ago.

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    I'm not among the old people yet, but it fascinates me when my parents tell me of their old times. Not that they were in the US back then, but when they were young, a whole roasted chicken was a really special treat--like, birthday cake special. (At least, that's the impression I got.) Oh, and apples--they had to be shipped from overseas and were coveted enough that my mom's family kept saving it until it was not-so-fresh.

    On the upside, they also talked about cooking meat and yams in a stone mound, left under the full blast of the sun to be baked. That sounds cool.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CGMonkey View Post
    Untill you realize they had it almost exactly the same 100 years ago... and 200 years ago... and 300 years ago.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ralph Waldo Emerson in the essay "Power" at rwe.org
    The key to the age may be this, or that, or the other, as the young orators describe; -- the key to all ages is -- Imbecility; imbecility in the vast majority of men, at all times, and, even in heroes, in all but certain eminent moments; victims of gravity, custom, and fear. This gives force to the strong, -- that the multitude have no habit of self-reliance or original action.
    We have yet to solve ignorance.

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    Well being born in 1960 i grew up with lot icons of the time cheap gas low pay that you could still pay bill and buy food with. Time changed and thing went up but i still think it was better .. as a Kid I could walk allover and I live in the LA area.. no one was trolling for me as kid or anyone my age at that time. We watch TV at night got up early and went out to play.. Our parents worked well my father did. He work hard got paid bought things for us .. scream when gas was at $035 a gallon when it was just $0.25 the day before.. time change money slowed and the rich got richer and the poor just got well.. I was happy to pay $369 a gallon the other day.. that show say it all.. I think my father would have yell "get me rope I need to hang fat cat in DC.." Yes life was simple and fun back then.. Yes we had our worries but pay, food, bills all cheaper.. but it had something else too and i am not sure how to say it with out ticking people off but we had Values more of knowing what is right from wrong .. and to how and what we want people to treat us and other .. Being kind wasn't pushed for it happen more often then it didn't . We did has a better time of it .. but now It's just so far gone.. i don't see how we could go back to something that distance now..

    CC

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    I remember shoveling a lot of dinosaur shit.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bcarman View Post
    I remember shoveling a lot of dinosaur shit.
    Dinosaurs? They didn't have Dinosaurs till I was in high School. People think its tough now but that first mass extinction when I was a kid, that was tough , all we ate for years were trilobites. To this day I can't stand trilobite soup.

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    Tristan Elwell
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    I'm not even old, rather young. But even I remember when Gas was less than a dollar and in our ridiculously poor household growing up we could live off far less income.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bcarman View Post
    I remember shoveling a lot of dinosaur shit.
    I didn't know you were a Creationist.

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    Trees in parks were allowed to have low branches for kids to climb and fall out of, or like me, hang by my knees pretending to be a bat. Health & safety has ruined a lot of fun.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JFierce View Post
    I'm not even old, rather young. But even I remember when Gas was less than a dollar and in our ridiculously poor household growing up we could live off far less income.
    Ha, same! When I first started driving at 17, gas was at 89 cents a gallon, and it was at that same price for a very long time as well. When the gas price escalation happened, I was amazed at how much the price would fluctuate from one day to the next.

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    We witnessed firsthand the occasion which would spawn the expression "jumping the shark". We did not so name this event, but I think we all knew on some level, "It was over."

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    I remember when:

    Cigarettes were $1.50

    A cup of coffee was 50 cents

    A beer was $1.00

    amd I could get clean, fresh water from my tap.

    I'm not that old, but I noticed those things change in my lifetime.

    On the flipside, for a hundred bucks I can get a phone that plays music and takes pictures.

    "Contrary to the belief of the layman, the essential of art is not to imitate nature, but under the guise of imitation to stir up excitement with pure plastic elements: measurements, directions, ornaments, lights, values, colors, substances, divided and organized according to the injunctions of natural laws. While so occupied, the artist never ceases to be subservient to nature, but instead of imitating the incidents in a paltry way, he imitates the laws."-Andre Lhote

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    I'm only 28. My best claim to fame is i remember an era before internet, cell phones, computers, and Fresh Prince of Bel Air. I vaguely remember a time before fresh prince though. And the computer thing is kind of wishywashy since computers technically existed before i was born. I guess i remember a time before everyone had one.

    "I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain."
    --- Frank Herbert, Dune - Bene Gesserit Litany Against Fear

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    @artzealot me too...I was born in '79. I remember us getting our first colour tv and when we got our first VCR player I was the only one who could set the time and I constantly had to show my dad how to record.

    Also CD's hadn't been invented yet so we used to push the tape recorder up to the radio and record our favourite songs, and sometimes if we were in the mood, record little DJ segments inbetween.

    Oh yeah, could also buy 4/5 chocolate bars for a £1 (now those were the days!)

    Last edited by Angel Intheuk; July 4th, 2012 at 05:11 AM.
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    I remember when food was a lot cheaper too. Working at a gas station I see it first hand. The look on people's faces when they buy 4 candy bars and it's 10 bucks. Or a pack of cigarettes and a six pack for 12 bucks.

    When I worked at a gas station in a poorer area, people cared a lot less about the price because they all paid with food stamps. They would send their kids in to buy $20 worth of junk shit a pop. 44 million americans on food stamps. If I quit my job, my household would make 3500 a month, and we would get 350 a month in food stamps for a family of 3. It almost becomes incentive to not work. And if I fluctuated my income numbers on my app, there would be no recourse. My husband's mother gets $800 a month in food stamps. And she lives by herself. All she buys is take-n-bake pizzas.

    Almost 50% of americans are obese. But when the state talk about limiting buying sodas on food stamps, they say it stigmatizes the poor, and you can't define what's nutritional or not. But it already defines what is nutritional or not...for example you can buy red bull on food stamps because it says "nutritional" on the back. But you can't buy rockstar or monster. Probably because some politician wanted to invest in colombia brewing co. Why do we pay sales tax on soda and then take the tax off when people buy it with tax dollars? It just makes no sense to me.

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    I remember that I used to love taking floppy disks apart just for fun. The cheapest gas I recall was 1.89$ and the weather has been getting crazier.

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  29. #23
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    Man I have corns older than some of these stories.

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    Back then...I was only born 1980 so...Fruit Roll-Ups had fruit in them (and seeds), Saturday mornings had at least five channels with cartoons worth watching, and...everything just LOOKED neat!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jazz View Post
    I was only born 1980 so...Fruit Roll-Ups had fruit in them (and seeds)
    Wait, what now?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stoat View Post
    Wherever you are, don't get too attached to it.
    Stoat, this is so freaking depressing... I dread a major shift in a close future and have always been paranoïd of the whole white picket fence thing.


    I remember a time where my parent's generation could get rid of the mortgage for their new house in 4 years, with a car that was paid-for waiting in the driveway (at least in north america). I also noticed the skyrocketing price of flour and basic foodstuff in the last 10 years. I envy the self-entitlement of newer generations of workers.

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    My Grandfather bought his one and only house for £80 and that was one year's salary.

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    Not so different from now, not as much as people make it out to be.

    "Astronomy offers an aesthetic indulgence not duplicated in any other field. This is not an academic or hypothetical attraction and should require no apologies, for the beauty to be found in the skies has been universally appreciated for unrecorded centuries."
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    Given that I was born in 1944, I must have something to contribute to this discussion! Yeah, yeah, gas was pennies a gallon, and a pack of smokes was 40 cents. Our first house was about 20 grand, etc, etc. Sixty years of continuous inflation will do that to you. What gets mentioned less often is that the average salary was around $6,000 per YEAR. I can tell you that a house was just as difficult to buy then as now. Mortgage rules were a lot tougher, and interest rates ranged from 9 to 15%. Still, folks got by, just as they get by now.

    Let me tell you what the big change is between then and now. In 1950, the world population was 2.5 billion. Today is is 7 billion, nearly THREE time what it was in 1950. There are a lot more people around today than there was when I was young. A lot more people, development and pollution, and a lot less of everything else, including nature, wildlife and privacy. Enough so that I notice the change.

    Of course, we have more iPads now, so I guess it's OK.

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    A fragment from one of the comics of my youth, wherein the wonders of 1977 are delineated for the time-traveling last survivor of the Alamo.

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