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Old December 13th, 2012, 05:36 PM   #71
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Originally Posted by Rongo View Post
I remember the days when most American families had one wage-earner, and that was enough to support the family. Nowadays, a family requires two wage-earners to live the same lifestyle they used to be able to with one. Our standard of living has plummeted, and nobody seems to notice...
If you wanted to actually live the lifestyle people lived in the 50's and 60's you could easily get by on one income (at least as easily as people did back then).

If you want to live a modern lifestyle, **** yes you need two incomes. Living standards are leaps and bounds better than forty years ago.
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Old December 14th, 2012, 02:25 AM   #72

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Materially, yes. But ignorance is bliss, as we say here. I remember when I was a kid, during the late 60's and 70's. A trip to the supermarket was a very bland experience compared to today. Many foods were seasonal: fruit vegetables like lettuce, tomatoes and oranges were only available at certain times of the year. Garlic, ginger, olive oil and chillies? We never used them! (Garlic was seen as a disgusting French thing and olive oil was put down our ears if we had excessive earwax...).

In truth, our food was very bland compared to today, but for some reason, most of us reminisce about our mother's cooking from our childhood. And, unlike today, they did cook, too. Not just nuke something in the microwave. We didn't have this obesity problem then.

We were happy with simple pleasures. A trip out to the beach, around 30 miles away. Now, they want to go to Bondi beach......

Modern kids are kept in a hothouse environment and teachers complain that they have zero imagination or initiative. It's hard to be a kid with mum and dad watching you all the time.

I used to know quite a few families of the hippy persuasion. These were very poor, more often than not, but did they invest an awful lot of time in their kids! As John Lennon wrote "as soon as you're born, they make you feel small, by giving you no time, instead of it all" (Working Class Hero). Not these people, and their kids grew up to be happy, well adjusted and decent people who shunned the consumerama that is modern Britain.

Given a choice between what modern kids have and what I had, I'd go for the latter anytime. The only part of modern life I'd want is the food (ingredients) variety. And perhaps computers.

During the early 70's my father was a HGV (Heavy Good Vehicle, 38 Imperial tons) driver. He used to bring home over 100 a week, although he did a lot of overtime. Not even my mother could spend much more than 15 on food for a family of 6 for a week. Mortgages were low and interest at kindly rates. Sure, there was less to spend it on, but I'd prefer to have too much cash and not enough to spend it on than vice versa. Plus, my father taught me early on that material goods are just chattel and short term happiness is gained from them. He was absolutely right. I never own anything unless I have a real use for it. I own my beer brewing stuff, 6 guitars, a couple of good amps, 3 computers, 5 or 6 cameras and gear, an ordinary car which permanently needs a wash (wash the bastard, and it plays up). And my home. I'm most certainly not mean, I just don't buy what I don't want or need.

I'm happiest out in the fields and woods, with my cameras and dog. A lesson I learnt as a child.
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Old December 14th, 2012, 03:25 AM   #73

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What would 15 buy you now in a week? A litre of milk, two loaves of bread, a pack of eggs and a few tins of beans...
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Old December 14th, 2012, 03:34 AM   #74

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What would 15 buy you now in a week? A litre of milk, two loaves of bread, a pack of eggs and a few tins of beans...
True lol, 15 quid these days is barely enough for a quiet night out, never mind anything more extravagant Conversely, how long did it take to earn 15 in the 1970s?
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Old December 14th, 2012, 03:37 AM   #75

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True lol, 15 quid these days is barely enough for a quiet night out, never mind anything more extravagant Conversely, how long did it take to earn 15 in the 1970s?
It might buy you three pints and a kebab, if you're lucky!
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Old December 14th, 2012, 04:37 AM   #76

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What would 15 buy you now in a week? A litre of milk, two loaves of bread, a pack of eggs and a few tins of beans...
Plus, you'd have no friends if you lived off beans and eggs.....

My local charges 3.15 for a standard pint of bitter. Fortunately, I have my own mini brewery. 16p per pint and it's superior quality too. Bring your own bucket!

I do a pretty mean lamb kebab, too.

When I were a lad, most of my disposable income went on beer. And motorcycle parts. It didn't seem to be like the blow it is now, paying that much for ale, yet I had comparatively less money then. My responsibilities are not that much greater now, really. Do we become meaner with age? I don't think so?
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Old December 14th, 2012, 08:37 AM   #77
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Materially, yes. But ignorance is bliss, as we say here. I remember when I was a kid, during the late 60's and 70's. A trip to the supermarket was a very bland experience compared to today. Many foods were seasonal: fruit vegetables like lettuce, tomatoes and oranges were only available at certain times of the year. Garlic, ginger, olive oil and chillies? We never used them! (Garlic was seen as a disgusting French thing and olive oil was put down our ears if we had excessive earwax...).

In truth, our food was very bland compared to today, but for some reason, most of us reminisce about our mother's cooking from our childhood. And, unlike today, they did cook, too. Not just nuke something in the microwave. We didn't have this obesity problem then.

We were happy with simple pleasures. A trip out to the beach, around 30 miles away. Now, they want to go to Bondi beach......

Modern kids are kept in a hothouse environment and teachers complain that they have zero imagination or initiative. It's hard to be a kid with mum and dad watching you all the time.

I used to know quite a few families of the hippy persuasion. These were very poor, more often than not, but did they invest an awful lot of time in their kids! As John Lennon wrote "as soon as you're born, they make you feel small, by giving you no time, instead of it all" (Working Class Hero). Not these people, and their kids grew up to be happy, well adjusted and decent people who shunned the consumerama that is modern Britain.

Given a choice between what modern kids have and what I had, I'd go for the latter anytime. The only part of modern life I'd want is the food (ingredients) variety. And perhaps computers.

During the early 70's my father was a HGV (Heavy Good Vehicle, 38 Imperial tons) driver. He used to bring home over 100 a week, although he did a lot of overtime. Not even my mother could spend much more than 15 on food for a family of 6 for a week. Mortgages were low and interest at kindly rates. Sure, there was less to spend it on, but I'd prefer to have too much cash and not enough to spend it on than vice versa. Plus, my father taught me early on that material goods are just chattel and short term happiness is gained from them. He was absolutely right. I never own anything unless I have a real use for it. I own my beer brewing stuff, 6 guitars, a couple of good amps, 3 computers, 5 or 6 cameras and gear, an ordinary car which permanently needs a wash (wash the bastard, and it plays up). And my home. I'm most certainly not mean, I just don't buy what I don't want or need.

I'm happiest out in the fields and woods, with my cameras and dog. A lesson I learnt as a child.
Like I said, you can still live that lifestyle, just don't expect to own a large house (average new house square footage has doubled since the 60's), the latest car (car ownership per capita has, too), the latest gadget (if you owned a computer in the 60's you were fabulously rich), etc etc.

Essentially, if you want to give up a materialistic life and live simply, you have to be willing to actually give up your materialistic life. But most people aren't, which is why the two-income household is so much more common than back then.
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Old December 14th, 2012, 11:03 AM   #78

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Like I said, you can still live that lifestyle, just don't expect to own a large house (average new house square footage has doubled since the 60's), the latest car (car ownership per capita has, too), the latest gadget (if you owned a computer in the 60's you were fabulously rich), etc etc.

Essentially, if you want to give up a materialistic life and live simply, you have to be willing to actually give up your materialistic life. But most people aren't, which is why the two-income household is so much more common than back then.
I don't think comparing computer owners now to those in the 1960s is especially valid. A computer in 1960 just doesn't compare as a consumable with what we have today.

I think I agree with your basic point though, that people today just want far more stuff, and this is going to impact a lot on single parent families especially.
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Old December 14th, 2012, 01:20 PM   #79

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True lol, 15 quid these days is barely enough for a quiet night out, never mind anything more extravagant Conversely, how long did it take to earn 15 in the 1970s?
When I first started work in 1972 I earned just 10 for a 40 hour week.
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Old December 14th, 2012, 01:23 PM   #80

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My first wage was about 45 a week I think in 1984.

And you don't look anything like that old in your photo Redcoat
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