The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.


Friday, January 23, 2009

Imagine

Imagine.

Imagine yourself living 50 years ago. TVs were black and white. Cars were very big but roomy and comfortable. Gas was cheap at around 25 cents a gallon. But few people made more than $1 an hour. Average annual income for men was around $3800, for women about $1200. There were no personal computers, no skateboards, no I-pods, no cellphones. There were car phones but these were actually radios and handled as such by operators for the phone company. And they were very rare. Music was on AM radio or on a phongraph record, made of ceramic or hard vinyl. Movies were the main public entertainment venue. Indoor and outdoor theaters were popular. Popcorn was 10 cents a bag. Most films were still in black and white but color was becoming more popular.

Imagine yourself living 100 years ago. Automobiles were extremely rare and called, for the most part, "horseless carriages". Airplanes were a novelty, a new invention. Gaslamps provided light, indoor plumbing was rare and only in cities. Average income was less than $400 a year. There were relatively few movie houses, films were silent and short. Child labor was common, as were 6 day work weeks and 12 hour workdays.

Imagine yourself living 150 years ago. Slavery was still legal in 15 states out of the 32 that made up the country. No cars, no airplanes, no buses. You walked or rode a horse. No movies, no electricity. Kerosene lamps or candles lit your house. If you were fortunate, there was a cast iron stove for cooking. Rural homes were most likely still cooking over the fire in the fireplace. Which also provided the heating.

Now, try to imagine what it will be like 50 years from today. Or even 10 years in the future. In fact, write down your predictions and store them away. Then, in 2019, retrieve them and see how far off the mark you were.

9 comments:

Neo said...

well as I saw it in the 70's we would be on the moon with established colonies, landing men on Mars and working to the out solar system, in the next 10 years I see computers more popular, voice activated, and mexicans over running our country which will change its common language to spanish, women will run the country children will look at a map and not know where the continent of africa is etc...
usa will be ussa (united socialist states of america) and everyone will move to canada.

Argentum Vulgaris said...

I made similar musings a week or so ago Douglas, what will my kids say to their kids... "You're lucky, we actually had to use a mouse!"

AV
http://netherregionoftheearthii.blogspot.com/
http://tomusarcanum.blogspot.com/
http://thingsthatfizz.blogspot.com/

Douglas said...

AV - I steal my best ideas from you. You should feel flattered. Actually, that was a fun rant you posted. This is serious, something we should consider from time to time. Could we deal with the conditions 100 years ago? What if civilization, because of some disaster (like a an asteroid strike), collapsed? How would we cope? Who would survive?

Neo - In the 8th grade I wrote an essay that basically said the US would evolve into a socio-political structure that merged capitalism with socialism and would likely lean heavily toward the socialist model. That was 1959. I didn't give a set time frame, I just felt it was an inevitable direction.

Anonymous said...

I survived the 50s. My first TV was small and got maybe 3 black & white channels. I shopped for myself and a very small dog for about 12 dollars a week, including meat (which I don't eat now). I used to enjoy a "Sunday drive" with little or no traffic. Only American cars on the road. You could get a MacDonalds burger for, I think, 15 cents. When I was dead broke, I got one burger for my dog and I to share. It's true, of course, that you don't miss what you never have had. Dee

Douglas said...

Ah, Dee, the Sunday drive... Mom up front knowing the way to go, Dad refusing to ask for directions, the kids in the back alternately screaming "He touched me!", "Did not!", and "Did too!" and regularly asking "Are we there yet?" So peaceful.

Michael said...

Ten years from now, I predict more inflation. It's funny how we think the price of gas and burgers NOW is high...

There's a possibility for World War 3, too, in the next 50 years. I believe I'll live to see it. Hopefully, I'll make it through 'til the end...

Michael.

Douglas said...

Michael - WWIII, hmmm What form might that take? There are a couple of people who say we are engaged in it now.

Douglas said...

Michael - WWIII, hmmm What form might that take? There are a couple of people who say we are engaged in it now.

Douglas said...

Ah, Dee, the Sunday drive... Mom up front knowing the way to go, Dad refusing to ask for directions, the kids in the back alternately screaming "He touched me!", "Did not!", and "Did too!" and regularly asking "Are we there yet?" So peaceful.