Bill Glasheen wrote:WE created the addiction to passive entertainment out of our own obsession with maintaining the 2-career family.
Meta: You know this is a very interesting point.
We work harder, and longer, and for less money and some would say, less quality of life than our parents did.
And for what?
Plasma T.V.? DVD? Fully loaded truck? 24hr-crap-o-rama television programming? One cannot convince me that this is good for us, our children or society. Sadder still, we are importing
this lifestyle to other countries.
In my case, I sat down a long time ago with paper, calculator and my wife's excellent accounting sense and figured out that if she were to work, once we tabulated the extra car insurance, work clothes, lunches, dry cleaning, gasoline, insurance, premade dinners, eating out, and daycare, we would have:
1. Less money than if she worked (I think we worked it out that we'd actually be in red unless she landed a job which made the same or more than mine.)
2. Less time as a family.
3. Our health would suffer due to improper nutrition
4. We'd be more tired and have less time for each other.
5. Our daughter would have less time with us.
6. Emotionally we would be a nervous wreak.
The benefits were all bad, and none good.
Now, if SHE had a higher paying job, I would have no issue being the homemaker (though I would not say I am suited for it, but in my family, it is he/she who is best suited for a role skill-wise which performs certain roles, which is why I advocate cross-training whenever possible!)
But yet, we have it drilled into our heads that;
1. You NEED a two income family to survive.
2. A woman needs to have a career and being a "homemaker" is a bad thing.
What a crock of pure B.S. these two things are.
Living here in California, housing prices are on a scale that makes everyone pretty much retch.
I see so many couples with kids working two or three jobs
to pay mortgages for homes they can afford, (but only with the three jobs) and they are NEVER home, the kids are loose and basically "raising themselves" and they live off of pizza, hot pockets, and burger king!
And for WHAT?....
That is the key question.
Bill Glasheen wrote:WE created the obesity by feeding the desire to get faster, more-readily-available food that tastes better.
WE are destroying the family unit with more divorce, no meals together, etc., etc.
Meta: It can be argued that this dilemma in which America finds itself is a bad marriage of human nature, and corporate greed. But I think you are right. Ultimately it is our choice if we want that life or not.
Bill Glasheen wrote:Diversions are good. Kids need to be kids. The battle I have at home (with significant other) is not indulging my kids' every desires. And it gets more difficult when mom constantly has the guilt rap thrown on her for working, etc., etc. But you can't buy a kid's love, and there's no reason that any kid needs to keep up with the material possessions of the bratty, spoiled, rich neighbors' kids.
Meta: Don't get me wrong... I LOVE video games and DVDs.
Up until last year I have had every system since the birth of pong....(which I have refused to partake further until such time as I can use it to excercise.)
..But regardless, they do have a time and place. (And should be highly limited with both.)
There is a new social issue cropping up in marriages these days, even with older adults, they are calling it "Video game widow". At least with football, it was only Monday nights, and there was a season.
Gaming is now the #1 cash cow in entertainment. The problem will only get worse.
Bill Glasheen wrote:I have yet to buy cable for the house, and I don't have HDTV. And I don't have TVs in the kids' bedroom, and that's only because I put my foot down.
Meta: Right on! Cable (with the exception of the history channel and American Choppers) Bites A$$ and is a waste of time. If I want to see a program, they have it on DVD, and probably at the library for free, and guess what! Going there can be a family activity. I hear they also have books there!
Bill Glasheen wrote:
I insist on a sport. I insist on practicing one musical instrument. And reading is made to be a good thing.
Meta: Damn Straight.
Bill Glasheen wrote:One of the problems here is the fact that we still exist as an agrarian-based society when most of us aren't farmers now and we do have A/C in the summer. Other countries have caught on, and make the kids go to school more days of the year. And guess what? It saves the parents the hassle of trying to figure out how to take care of junior during the summer. That's just nuts when you think about it...
Meta: It's beyond
I make my daughter go to summer school, whether she needs it our not, and I have garden projects, carpentry, and anything I can do to get her out of the house and into the hills so she can LIVE for crying out loud!
Bill Glasheen wrote:But here's another way to look at it all. Should we really be upset that India and China are upcoming economies? Maybe... Or maybe not. How about the glass-half-full view? They are just more customers to sell stuff to.
Meta: The problem is, the majority of up and coming countries in the rest of the world doesn't particularly like or care for America. And who is to blame for that?
Bill Glasheen wrote: We SHOULD hope for success of folks we sell stuff too, because it means they have more disposable income. Yea, it means we're actually going to have to build products that work and are what people want and are affordable. Otherwise we lose out in the marketplace.
Meta: Which is another issue. America less and less is manufacturing it's own products. What will happen when we cease to manufacture all vital goods? We will have a society and economy (Like we pretty much do have now) of middle men...and China is for one starting to eliminate them one by one. I have a friend who lives in China, and he writes me every week telling me it's like the wild west of capitalism there! You think they'll want to play nice if they can?
Nope. They learned too well from Uncle Sam....
Bill Glasheen wrote:
But people... Rich people want to buy stuff, right? You don't want to kill your competition; you want them to make you better.
Meta: "Rich" people in general here in California by and large means "New Rich" which aint good. What would happen if a lazy selfish immature slob got rich overnight with internet stock? You'd see houses piled high with SUVs, littered with fast food wrappers, malls popping up like mushrooms which displace the old cultural icons and way of life and the death of small town culture at large, or *any* culture for that matter.
That's exactly what happened here in Southern California.
The only houses being built are brand new upscale communities which are ultra cheap materials and get this: The developers make deals with big box retailers and local city governments to build vast, Ultra-malls and build the bedroom community into
the architecture. I kid you not. There are at least 5 new communities which have sprung up Ultra-malls (Think every big box retail together) butted up against, in between, nestled and WORKED into the actual civil engineering of the paths, parks, and facilities of the gated community. So all nature for 5 square miles is one, big Disneyland park and all exits like a Disney ride end up in the "gift shop." And no need to leave, because there is it's own post office, and schools, and medical centers.
It's sick, sad, and is a trend coming to a open tract of land near you, sporting luxurious views of Wall mart, Home Depot and Target out of your purposely framed front living room window.
There's a bit of Metablade in all of us.