5 Responses to Eight things you might miss

  1. Liz January 15, 2013 at 10:04 am #

    None of those things listed have anything to do with the Cold War. They are simply things true in history 50 years ago. So he’s waxing nostalgic about simpler, more ‘noble’ times in the past. Isn’t that the tendency for everyone over the age of 40?

    In the article the only relevant item about the Cold War is the thing he says he does not miss – the nuclear stand off.

  2. imhotep January 15, 2013 at 10:54 am #

    Not one of the “eight things” happens to be true in fact. Some of them are partiality true. Like all good propagandists the author has offered the reader the “big lie.” As Hitler said, “The great masses of the people….will more easily fall victim to a big lie than to a small one.” So this author/propagandist of “eight things” offers up the big lie and leaves out all of the small nuance and detail. For instance the larger historical context. Like how being black or female or really, really poor at that time in history might color your point of view about events. Those that “cling to their Bible, guns and flags” might enjoy this list.

  3. russ January 15, 2013 at 11:19 am #

    Liz/imhotep – Good points. That’s a crap list.

    “Unions were strong”. Yeah, but they were under attack even then. I recall the first right-to-work laws being put on the ballots back in the 1950s. Plus, one reason management constantly provided for the need to pull up stakes and move out of town was the presence of unions – even then management wanted their companies to relocate to non-union areas.

    The part about “we didn’t have a terrorism-industrial complex”? But we had a military-industrial complex which led to a terrorism-industrial complex.

    The point about “infrastructure was being expanded”, with the Interstate Highway system being held up as the epitome of such expansion –

    Of course, we had not passed the point of Peak Oil production in this country (that would come 15 years later), but ironically M. King Hubbert was coming out with his Peak Oil calculations right about that time.

    You pay your money and you make your choice. We made the choice of a vast highway system to greatly encourage the desire to drive and the need to drive, thinking that would go on forever.

    And now as we look at Peak Oil, and the problem of climate change, just how great was that particular decision on infrastructure expansion?

    We might like a “mulligan”.

  4. Allie January 15, 2013 at 11:27 am #

    Russ – I don’t think the interstate highway system is as responsible for our need to drive as the way our cities developed with urban job centers surrounded by residential suburbs – and no effective mass transit in most cities. The interstate highways were a huge impetus for commerce and have more than paid for themselves.

  5. russ January 15, 2013 at 12:17 pm #

    Allie – Good point. Still, we should not forget that our development of urban job centers surrounded by residential suburbs is a somewhat artificially induced thing.

    Recall that General Motors, Firestone Tire and Rubber, Standard Oil, Phillips Petroleum, and Mack Truck joined forces to form a corporation called “National City Lines”. The purpose of NCL was to use its considerable wealth to buy up trolley tracks and systems in cities across the US and dismantle them – thereby forcing more oil consumption, more driving, etc.

    I am sure you are correct that initial costs have been paid, and that the interstates were a proven boon to commerce.

    For 70 years.

    But I am wondering if we took the viewpoint of some Native American tribes, and tried to see seven generations into the future, should we have made that same decision regarding building the interstates?

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