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Posts Tagged ‘Baby Boomers’

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Source: Newsweek

Source: This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review

Now that I think about it and this Newsweek article that was written by David Friend contributed to it and even though he didn’t argue this himself, but the more I think about it the 1990s is the decade when Liberals won the Cultural War. Because there was one scandal after another both in politics and government, but in entertainment as well and yet America survived it and we prospered so much as a country in that decade with the end of the Cold War and the economic boom of that decade thanks to new trade, new technology, the deficit coming down and actually leading to a balanced budget by 1998. (Ask a Millennial what a balanced budget is and they’ll tell you its a budget where everything is spent equally, because they’ve never seen one before) And a lot of Americans perhaps especially my Generation X, but Baby Boomers decided as a generation and country that its OK.

So what if a politician sleeps with women they’re not married to and cheats on their wives. Thats bad for their wives and their children, but that doesn’t affect me and its not my business anyway. Which I believe was the attitude about all of these scandals where it didn’t involve people actually getting physically hurt or falsely accused. We go from the King of Tabloids who was Donald Trump (yes, the same man) in New York and all of his affairs with other women when he was married with kids at the time, to Governor Bill Clinton of Arkansas who just happened to be running for President in 1991-92 and one famous affair that he had in that time period of the late 1980s and early 1990s with Gennifer Flowers.

To entertainment celebrities like Tommy Lee (from Motley Crew) and actress Pam Anderson and they having their sexual affair literally in public and making a video about it. O.J. Simpson was a real true crime story with two real murders involved and in that sense at least was a real story with real significance. Ao in that extent at least it was a serious story. But it was a tabloid story because of the main character involved, the other serious characters involved and where the story took place which was Los Angeles.

But go from the mid 1990s to the late 1990s and again with Bill Clinton who in many ways was a Hollywood character the John F. Kennedy with the cameras always on him with reporters writing down everything they hear and find out about him, but then reporting it, unlike with JFK. With the Jack Stanton character from the movie Primary Colors (played by John Travolta) almost seeming too real. To Bill Clinton’s last sex scandal from the 1990s involving him and a White House intern in Monica Lewinsky who is only two years older than me and 27 years younger than Bill Clinton obviously young enough to be his daughter.

But if that doesn’t seem to be a big enough Hollywood story for you, how about the Speaker of the U.S. House Newt Gingrich who made it a priority of his to remove President Bill Clinton from the White House (one way or another) and was President Clinton’s biggest critic of the 1990s, as well as one of his best partners as far as the legislation they were able to pass together in that divided government and continually bashed the President as being immoral for his sex scandals especially the Lewinsky scandal, gets caught having an affair with his secretary while he was married to another women. Newt Gingrich winning the title of Hypocrite in-chief. He closest he would ever come to being President.

America goes through all these scandals, the Christian-Right in America which has had more of their own share of sex scandals and other scandals in America (Jim Bakker, Jim Swaggart, etc) and yet they reach their highest point in America as far as political power and having a veto voice inside the Republican Party as far as where they have to be politically and get to decide its presidential nominees. The Republican Party wins complete control of Congress of 1994 winning back the House for the first time since 1953 which they would hold onto until 2007 and win back the Senate in 1994 that they would hold onto until 2001. Plus the GOP would hold at least 30 governorships and a majority of state legislatures in the mid and late 1990s and would hold all of that power other than losing the Senate in 2001 and win back the presidency in 2001, until the late 2000s when Democrats finally won back the House and Senate in 2006.

With all of this political power moving to the Right and even Far-Right in the 1990s, Americans as a people and I believe with Generation X completely coming of age in the 1990s being a big factor of this, we essentially decided as a country, so what! So what if free adults have consensual affairs with people other than their spouses. Thats a matter between them and their families. Not something that should be decided by government certainly and shouldn’t cost people their jobs even in public office simply because they’re in loyal spouses.

I believe the 1990s gave rise to gay rights movement of the 2000s, and movements that opposed the War on Drugs, privacy thanks to the War on Terror in the 2000s, becoming a big issue and concern with the belief that government was becoming big government in our personal lives. The Culture War was ending in the 1990s because of everything that we went through as a country and people being able to see all of these individual scandals that in the 1950s would have ruined most Americans if those scandals were made public and in many cases people would have faced serious legal consequences for them even if they were private and consensual.

Americans saw these scandals and saw a lot of people behaving badly and irresponsibly, but deciding that those affairs aren’t mind and people weren’t getting hurt physically, financially, or being falsely libeled because of what someone did to them, this is not something that I should be personally concern with. And just let the people who were affected by this personal behavior decide for themselves what and if should be done about it. Instead of big government stepping in.

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Source: Watching Mojo- OJ, WJC & CK

Watch Mojo: Top 10 Defining Moments of 1990s America

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Counter-Culture
This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat Plus

I think Peter Coyote hit on the head so to speak and I’m not sure what I can add to it. Other than to point out why I believe he is right. If the goals of the counter-culture movement was to end war and capitalism, etc then of course they failed. If anything those things are more prevalent today. Especially when it comes to capitalism where most of the world now has some type of private enterprise private market economy that comes with basic property rights. Back in Peter Coyote’s time the 1960s, maybe half of the world had an open economy that was liberated from state-control.

But what is called counter-culture is all around us. Americans now more than in the 1960s are free to be Americans. Which is individualistic, which is the freedom for the individuals to be individuals. The freedom for one to be themselves and not feel the need to live in some type 1950s collectivist society where young people were expected to grow up and become their parents and grandparents. What Baby Boomers did and I include Peter Coyote in this group, was to break out from the parents and grandparents lifestyles. And decided to live their own lives instead. Even if their parents didn’t approve.

The part of the 1960s that I approve of is the so-called Hippie Revolution or culture. Which was about the freedom for people to be themselves and not feel the need to have to fit in with the establishment. And we’ve been on this track ever since which has freed millions of Americans all sorts of ethnicities, races, sexualities, cultures, lifestyles, etc to be themselves. It’s when you get into the anti-American, anti-private enterprise, anti-war at all costs, anti-law enforcement, pro-anarchy, anti-American form of government including the U.S. Constitution, where I break away with the New-Left in America.

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Source: David Hoffman

Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat Plus

The 1960s was truly a revolution for American culture and politics. We go from a very conservative collectivist period from the 1940s and 50s to a period where all sorts of groups of Americans were standing up and demanding their freedom. And the freedom to live their own lives for the very first time in their lives. And from that sense at least the 1960s was a very positive time with so many new Americans now wanting and obtaining freedom over their own lives. And a bad time for the conservative establishment that wanted to keep things as is.

The 1960s you have the civil rights movement which was very positive. And not just for African-Americans, but for Latin-Americans, women of all races and ethnicities, as well as gays. And for Americans of all backgrounds now being able to live their own lives the way they want to. And no longer feeling the need or having to live the lives of their parents and grandparents. The 1960s you also have the anti-war movement which led to America finally seeing that the Vietnam War was wrong and that we couldn’t win it.

The negative aspects of the 1960s was of course the violence. We lost two great political leaders in John F. Kennedy and Robert F. Kennedy. We lost two great civil rights leaders in Martin L. King and Malcolm X. The rise of crime in that decade, the rioting and division of that decade. Things fifty-years later we’re still going through and haven’t recovered from. But revolutions tend not to be all peaceful. There tends to be some casualties in revolutions and the 1960s was no exception to that.

We go from a very stagnant and status quo decade of the 1950s to a revolutionary decade of the 1960s. Where not a lot of new things seemed extreme, except to the establishment that again wanted to keep things as is. Because they benefited most from that America and also believed that was the way for all Americans to live. And if America had to do all over again I believe it would and that it would’ve needed to be done. Because of all the Americans who were denied freedom in America simply because of who they were.
David Hoffman: How The 1960s Changed America

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The 1960s
This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on WordPress

If you are familiar with leftist publications like Salon, The Nation, The American Prospect, AlterNet, TruthOut and I’m sure I’ve left some other out and the Occupy Wall Street movement and what is left of it today, go back to the 1960s and you’ll see where the members of that movement come from today. Students For A Democratic Society, the counter-culture movement and the anti-war movement and even anti-capitalist and wealth movement of the 1960s are the parents and grandparents of the Occupy today.

They were called the New Left back and people with this really far-leftist mindset at least in America are still the New Left today. People who were not only against the Vietnam War which a lot of the country who was a lot more politically mainstream back then was also against. But they were against the liberal democratic establishment in general. Not the Democratic Party necessarily, but the liberal values that govern America then and today and what the country was founded on. Mostly as it related to our military, law enforcement and foreign policy, but also our economic and political systems.

The New Left coming of age in college in the 1960s decided they didn’t like America at least how the country was governed and founded. And put together a movement to not only get us out of the Vietnam War, which I would’ve been against back then as well as today. But they wanted to destroy our system and how our country is governed. And replace it with something a lot more social democratic, that is the democrats who were in this group. I mean if you look at Occupy today and then look at the New Left of the 1960s, they are the same people ideologically and culturally and believe in the same things.

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The Lizard King

The Lizard King

Source: The Doors: The Doors Live in Europe 1968

This might be The Doors best concert. Starts off of course with Jim Morrison sticking his big leather ass at the audience and he starts shaking and turns around and the concert gets going with Light My Fire. And then of course he has to adjust his pants and concho belt. But that is what you got with The Lizard King, that I also call The Leather King. Because he wasn’t just a vocalist, but a performer. Who knew exactly what he brought to the table and how to entertain and especially women. His whole show was about sexual effect, as well as the singing of course. But that whole Lizard King persona with his with the skin-tight leather suit and boots, was a show.

A rock and roll, but also a sexual show. He wanted to be noticed, especially by women. He wanted them to check him out. That is why young man with his look and appearance wears skin-tight black leather jeans, with a concho belt. He’s telling women, “check men out. Especially my crotch, legs and ass. I’m here for the whole world to see.” Or he was simply too drunk and high to know what the hell he was doing. Why would a sober man wear a skin-tight leather suit, concho belt and cowboy boots, wherever he goes. Unless he’s a cowboy or something. The alcohol probably had something to do with The Lizard King’s wardrobe, but I also believe he knew exactly what he was doing with it. And wanted to bring a hell of a lot of attention to himself. And was very successful at that.

In just a ninety-second video, you see exactly what Jim Morrison is doing and what he’s trying to accomplish there. To get notice and not just as a great vocalist and frontman and I believe he might be the best frontman of all-time. At least from the Baby Boom Generation. He was a great entertainer who was probably 10-15 years ahead of him time as far as style and wardrobe. But Steppenwolf vocalist John Kay, and Elvis Presley, had their own leather jeans and leather suits as well, after The Lizard King in the late 1960s. Again a credit to Morrison, because he set a trend here for rock and roll and roll and not just classic rock. His leather suit, was ahead of its time, but became very mainstream by the late 1970s and into the early 1980s. Where it seemed like every headbanger bad a pair black leather jeans and black leather boots, and a black leather jacket and did their own Lizard King look.

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Counter Culture

Counter Culture

Source: Ian Ramsley: Sixties Berkley

The emergence of the New-Left in America of leftist radicals who had socialist anarchist tendencies, that saw it as their duty to take on the conservative as well as liberal establishments in America. And to move America further to the Left politically and culturally and a lot of this happened at Berkley in the late 1960s.Groups like The Weather Underground and Students For a Democratic Society, Democratic Socialists USA, groups that were basically Occupy Wall Street of the 1960s, the parents and grandparents of OWS, all coming in the scene in America as Baby Boomers were starting and graduating from college. And deciding they didn’t like the America they grew up in. And were going to try to create a new America.

There was sort of a perfect political storm happening in the 1960s. The Baby Boom coming of age. A huge generation that was born in the 1940s and 50s that were growing up in both of those decades, as well as the 1960s. And then you have the civil rights movement, the Vietnam War, the Cultural Revolution in and outside of Hollywood. That the Boomers were part of, as well as their elders in the Silent Generation who were in their late twenties and thirties at this point. You have roughly 70-80 million Baby Boomers (depending on how you define that generation) who were coming of age in a very turbulent decade. And saw an America they didn’t like or wasn’t as good as they thought it should be. Who were much further left than the Progressives in Progressive Era. And wanted to remake the country.

That is how you get the New-Left in America and Berkley was the center of it. A very collectivist establishment era from the 1950s and before, going too far with the Cold War and the Vietnam War (as the New-Left would see it) and with millions of young adults just graduating high school, starting college, graduating college, wanting nothing to do with the military draft and the Vietnam War, other than to oppose it. Who had more in common with Fidel Castro and Che Guevara, than they did Jack Kennedy, when it came to politics. Who wanted to live their own lives and not go with the party-line and lifestyle that they parents and grandparents lived. Who were now old enough and organized enough to make their politics well-known.

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A Year Never to Forget

A Year Never to Forget


1968 was one of if not the most explosive years in American history, for good and bad. With everything that happened that year from political assassinations, with people being freed to be themselves and live the way they want to. With all the good movies and music that came from this era. With the sporting events, as well as a new political movement in America. That emerged on the Left-Wing and what I call the New-Left in America. The Far-Left even that came into the Democratic Party. That was anti-establishment, anti-war, anti-capitalist, anti anything that was previously done in America that seemed as part of the establishment. The mid and late 1960s was changing to the point that for people who weren’t Baby Boomers and were older, were seeing a completely New America.

The term New America I believe gets thrown around a lot and has become another corny catch phrase in American pop culture especially. But we did become a New America not in 1968, but go back to 1964 and perhaps even 1963 when the civil rights movement became mainstream in America. 1968 is that year where America became that true melting pot and where we became that country that just didn’t claim to believe all of those great liberal democratic values of opportunity, diversity, tolerance, individual freedom, freedom of choice, speech, tolerance etc, but we no longer just claimed those values, but actually owned them. We were no longer just a great melting pot ethnically, racially and everything else, but a country where all sorts of Americans became free to be themselves and live their own lives.

Culturally, the 1950s America that the Christian-Right and Neoconservatives, have tried to move America back to ever since, it didn’t end in 1960 or even 1968. That culturally collectivist decade ended in 1963 or 64. But 1968 was a year where the right-wing came back and took on all of these millions of Baby Boomers who represented millions of Americans of all sorts of ethnic, racial and cultural backgrounds and got behind Richard Nixon for president. And where these New Americans stood their ground. And that is where you see this cultural battle, Cultural War even that is still going on America today. Between Americans who want their 1950s back. Versus Americans who want to continue to progress and create an America that works for all of us.

1968 is a year where you see two America’s emerge. They were always there, but thanks to Hollywood and TV, they became obvious to most Americans. An America who saw things in black and white and if you saw things differently they would view you as Un-American. Versus an America that didn’t see things so simplistically. Who didn’t believe women’s place was necessarily in the home. That women should be able to make this decision for themselves whether to work at home and run the house, or work out of the home for money. Where our religious, ethnic and racial diversity, became celebrated. Where equal rights and diversity were celebrated in the New America. In 1968 you saw young adults essentially taking on their parents and grandparents in this new Cultural War.

America, went through a lot of hell in the 1960s with all of the assassinations and the Vietnam War. The violence that came about against the civil rights marchers, to use as examples. But with all of that violence and chaos came a lot of positive things as well. A Cultural Revolution where millions of Americans and not just Baby Boomers, but my Generation X and Americans after that, were given true American individual freedom to be themselves. So in that sense at least and from my perspective, the 1960s and 1968 even, the most explosive year of that incredible decade, was a great time. It was a time where millions of Americans were given true individual freedom to be themselves. And with what comes with individual freedoms, comes personal responsibility as well. So Conservatives should support this as well.

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