"We had a way harder life than you!"

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Rawne1980:
Of course they had it harder.

Also water was wetter, snow was colder and they had to walk to and from school uphill both ways ... wearing clogs.

In 120 degree weather, whilst being chased by a velociraptor, carrying a vat of acid, wearing knee-high socks, while riding a unicycle.

chiefohara:
My dad grew up in a house without electricity.

Mind you im 31 and he is 60 :)

Things are easier for everyone these days and thats a great thing

Okay so how are things any easier for people now? You have tons of people out of work and gas prices are through the roof. There are people who are middle-aged flipping burgers because they got laid off after several years of loyal service. Most people are losing their houses and can't even afford the simple things like groceries or electricity. Everytime I drive by the shelter and see some mom holding her kids hand because they lost everything, it pisses me off. Alot of people doing good, there is also lot of people that are getting screwed over. Like to say that I know where your coming from, it is never just a portrait of sunshine and rainbows, unless your living in a comfortable situation.

unstabLized:
Have you ever heard this from your parents when you were growing up? Maybe when you did bad at something, like school, and you tell them that you tried your best, but they come up with some snappy response like "You ONLY studied for 5 hours for ONE test. I had to memorize the entire textbook, and they were twice as thick back then!"

Is the statement really true though? Is "Our current life" easier than what it was back then? Or is it actually harder, and they're just trying to push us? Sure, we have way more/better technology than back then, but is that really a positive point? Or does it just make things more complex?

What do you guys think? Did we have it better back then, or do we have it better now, even though there are way more options in our life?

Well I mean in general terms they probably did have it harder. But I'm calling bullshit on their school work being harder. The only reason it would have been harder was because in math n stuff they wouldn't have had calculators so they had to learn to do everything by hand. Technology just alleviated all that mindless busy work so that you could actually learn the things that matter. Additionally a lot of theories would be more developed and ideas would be much more concise in modern times.

Hell, my year 12 Chemistry teacher (who has a PhD) has no problem admitting that the school work we do these days is much harder than it was 20 years ago. Technology just got rid of the irrelevant crap.

I know for a fact my parent's had it a lot harder than I did, but I was a much more well behaved kid then they where.

Where even, now let me play LOL in peace and i'll cut the damn grass after dinner.

unstabLized:

What do you guys think? Did we have it better back then, or do we have it better now, even though there are way more options in our life?

In the United States, kids today have it worse. Here's a few facts that differ the Baby Boomers from Gen X or the Millenials:

-The worst economy in 70 years. Yeah, the Baby Boomers enjoyed some of the most rampant economic growth and real middle income gain in the last century. Today real gains for the middle class is almost nonexistent, and because of the most Conservative Congress in the last century (yes, this is true), there's absolutely no compromise when it comes to any bills. Thus, nothing gets done.

-Oh right, the worst use of the filibuster by Republicans in American history. Thanks to the inability to compromise (which EVERY Republican-dominated Congress/House has done in the past), the American citizens have had to suffer through a complete lack of legislation that might change things for several years now.

-Academic creep is the worst it's ever been. What's that, you ask? Well, ever heard anyone say "Bachelor's is the new High School Diploma"? Yeah, it's that. For the Boomers, an Associates (or any College at all) practically guaranteed a job and middle-class income. Today students are expected to do more and be better than their parents or grandparents ever were. It's why IQ scales have been continuously adjusted higher, it's why the SAT difficulty has been dramatically increased, and it's why current Pre-Professional students are not only expected to have Research, Volunteer, and Leadership experience - but also a 3.0+ GPA (and GPA-creep was only common for private schools with wealthy patrons). Fifty years ago a high GPA would have sufficed, and the rest - what is considered an "average" applicant these days - would have garnered several guaranteed acceptances at your top Universities. In addition to being expected to do more, in some fields the knowledge gained by Undergrads is OBSOLETE by the time they apply for Grad school (molecular genetics is one area that being out of date means not paying attention for about two years).

-Gen X / The Millenials are the first generations in United States History that cannot be expected to attain a higher level of quality of life than their parents. This is well documented, and is mostly due to the shitty amounts of middle class income rise over the past 30 years and rising prices.

-Prices for homes in the 1960's rarely broke $90k. The same home today can be bought for $250k. Note: Wages have not tripled. The same goes for cars, and electronics in general.

-So they want to bitch about Vietnam and Korea? Well, apparently they forgot the Gulf War, the Iraq War, and the War On Terror in Afghanistan. The Iraq War - which was based on complete lies and continue for no apparent reason - lasted a decade. No, in terms of human life it didn't cost as much as Vietnam or Korea, but it cost the American public significantly in terms of economic stability. Neither of the last two wars were funded - they were all paid for by increasing the National Debt.

-The media corporations are fully allowed to lie, skew, and present completely biased views in lieu of traditional reporting. By law, prior to 2004, news organizations had to present balanced programming. Afterwards the corporations argued that there were enough outlets to offer the balanced views hollistically. The courts agreed, and FOX News jizzed its pants with Conservative fear-mongering and propaganda. Since the law's repeal was never really covered in the news (imagine that), everybody who trusted a single news source before just kept watching one - even as it churned out "infotainment" that offered a single-minded narrative.

-Corporations are now people, but only when it comes to political donations. This may not seem a particularly big burden to today's kids, but consider that most politicians spend time fundraising - not voting and reading bills. Unless you have hundreds of millions, most of which is going to be donated by various corporate sponsors, you cannot compete politically.

-The American Public is the least educated in science (or, at least seems to understand it the least) that it's been in a long time. Oddly enough, much of the bellyaching comes from the same Baby Boomer crowd that grew up in the Atomic Family era and saw the Moon Landing. They are perfectly willing to trust scientists when flying through a vacuum miles above our heads to our nearest celestial neighbor, but say that the burning of millions of gallons of oil a day causes global climate change (or argue that Evolution is real), and you have loads of skepticism. Because the public can't discern shitty science from good science, a lot more shitty science ("Complementary Medicine" and "Alternative Medicine") is happening.

-Because of the previously mentioned absolute bunk in terms of real income gain for the middle class over the last decade and nearly-complete assimilation of Feminism (a good thing), the most driven and capable people are having fewer children later in life. Where your parents/grandparents could expect to raise a family of 4 to 5 on a upper-middle-class salary with a decent quality of life, the same family size now requires triple the income.

-Obesity is an epidemic, and Type II Diabetes is following closely behind. The Baby Boomers are major contributors to this, but because most use Medicare/Medicaid (and simultaneously decry a single-payer health insurance option and/or "Socialist/Communist" taxes) it means the treatment burden is greater for every working person than ever before. Chronic conditions like those caused by obesity and Type II Diabetes cost significantly more than one-time acute conditions (like broken bones and gun wounds).

-Speaking of more "Socialist" programs, the Payers:Payee ratio for Social Security is the lowest in the history of the program. Whereas when the 50-60 year olds had jobs it was about a 23:1 ratio, it is now closer to 8:1. Paying in more to get out less.

So, at least in the United States, no. They didn't have it harder. What they mean is that the basic amenities (water, food, housing) was either harder to come by or of lower quality, or that their early life involved more physical activity. Whereas they might've walked to school two miles away and had to pump a well for water, now kids get bused to school and almost everybody has hot/cold taps. Maybe seatbelts and airbags, too?

According to my mom school is a lot harder now than it used to be. However it's gone through some drastic changes. There's less importance to remembering things and more being able to understand things, especially in subjects such as math, physics and to some degree chemistry.

When it comes to other things they did have it harder. Technology makes life a lot easier (most of the time) so a lot of the things that were hard are now quite easy

Funnily enough my parents think the opposite. They do think that school is easier now but they think everything else is harder. It's harder to get a job now and it's harder to own your own home (where I live anyway). We definitely have it easier with transport, air conditioning and all that sorta stuff but overall it's not easier, just different.

Its never easy. Sure we have computers to give us an extra lift, but then the world dumps more things for us to do. Instead of "copying" papers by hand we copy it by scanner. This includes spell checking, grammar checking, etc. At one time someone did maybe 80 pages a day. Now they do 400. Its the same amount of work.

In a lot of ways it feels like we are getting paid to "keep up" with a computers output. That alone can be exhausting.

When someone brings up the "we had it more difficult" I usually just give them a book, say: read the first 5 pages, now did you understand that? At least here where I live the school system has changed a hell a lot and what they learned in High School we learn in Junior high.
When I turned 12 the math in our school turned so "difficult" my parents no longer could help me with my homework. They are not the most schooled ones but I've never really had that argument with them.
The same thing is when someone (usually older generation) goes for the "everything was beter in our time", my answer is mostly something along the lines with: yeah, people died from the flu and if someone lived 30km away you could see them ones a year...

My family did honestly have a harder life overall than me (hard to top spousal abuse, Grand Mal siezures and death), but my parents had their teens and twenties so much easier. Fisrtly, their parents are not dead, and continue to badger me about why I'm "always" depressed. Second, they did not have PTSD. OCD runs in the male side of the family, though, and drove my aunt from my uncle. I'm pretty grateful though, I've been to Mexico to help build an orphanage and seen people living literally in a city dump on the edge of town, in a shanty town made of scrap metal and glass bottles. Their water was brown with rust, the kids played soccer among broken glass. I take comfort knowing I will never have it that bad.

Rawne1980:
Of course they had it harder.

When my dad was growing up everything was black and white, how the frack they could tell what was what without any colour i'll never know.

Also water was wetter, snow was colder and they had to walk to and from school uphill both ways ... wearing clogs.

and of course that hitler was stealing there potatoes whilst they slept...that was there only ration...

I think a lot of the time, not all of the time mind, it comes from the parents trying to instill a sense of perspective. For example, when I was growing up, we were poor. Not, I am concerned about my financial security poor, not I may not be able to go to uni or get a new Iphone poor, we were scrounging for shrapnel at the back of the couch to pay the bills before the power was cut, my parents were ( I found out recently) skipping meals because they could afford to feed themselves or us kids, not both. But, as my father is very fond of saying, we always had a roof over our head and we (the kids) always had food on the table. My father, when he was growing up, had none of this, having grown up in a boys home and never owning anything for himself.

My family is well off now, most of us (including myself) have moved out and we are all doing well, but the other day my sister (my older sister btw) started complaining about how my father was canceling her Austar and demanding that she pay for her own internet. SHe gets massively angry whenever someone challanges her view of what she deserves. This leads not only to my father telling her that 'I had it much harder' but 'we all had it much harder' just to try and get her to appriciate how good she has it.

Yeah pretty much from my parent well I can understand from their point of view.
I kind of agree with this generation seeing how my childhood was before the internet was born. So doing homework I had to go to the library or using encyclopedia as oppose to these day you can just look it up on the internet.

Actually... I've never heard that.

I did, however, have the advantage of a mother who pulled stupider shit in her youth than I ever will. Being able to remind your parents that compared to them you're still a beacon of virtue is a great boon.

I agree that they did have it harder, they had nowhere near all the luxuries we get nowadays and did have to work harder to achieve things.

But that doesn't need the can be a bit compassionate towards certain things, like you struggling in school and such.

I never get this from my elders, in fact they talk about how much easier they had it! One of my exes was like this though. No matter how shitty my day had been, she'd always have to one-up me. "You failed a test? I failed my whole course." "Your friend was being an asshole? All my friends are assholes." "Your aunt has cancer? I know someone who died from cancer." So glad that's over.

Haha I think everyone has gone through this speel before.

unstabLized:
I completely agree. Problem is, some, including my parents, are one of those "If you get lower then an A+ you won't get anywhere in life, and plus, don't be so proud of your marks because your school is shit" type.

This is the flaw in education... there HAS to be a loser even if they are still absolutely brilliant

A qualification where 10/10 people get A+ is literally worthless

unstabLized:
Have you ever heard this from your parents when you were growing up? Maybe when you did bad at something, like school, and you tell them that you tried your best, but they come up with some snappy response like "You ONLY studied for 5 hours for ONE test. I had to memorize the entire textbook, and they were twice as thick back then!"

Is the statement really true though? Is "Our current life" easier than what it was back then? Or is it actually harder, and they're just trying to push us? Sure, we have way more/better technology than back then, but is that really a positive point? Or does it just make things more complex?

What do you guys think? Did we have it better back then, or do we have it better now, even though there are way more options in our life?

I was once in a discussion like this with my grandma, she's a great woman, of the WW2 generation. I'm sure many of you guys have/had grandparents of the same generation. And she said to me with great conviction, "Andy, if I was asked if I wanted to be young in this generation, I would always say no.".

She went on to explain that while they lived in lower working class means and never really had many luxuries, the sense of community among neighbors, ability to walk down a dark alley without feeling fear of getting mugged or raped, and generally how "uncomplicated" things were back then compared to how they are now, made all the difference to her.

I guess this generation, while living in a time when human kind has never been so advanced, with all our luxuries surrounding us, we have our own problems to face that simply didn't exist back then. I must admit that at least with where I live and have lived, the sense of "community" among neighbors simply doesn't exist. In the house I lived previous to my current one, it was in a Cul-De-Sac among 10 other houses in the immediate vicinity. I would go as far to say that in the 10 years I lived there, we never even spoke to 6 of them and were only friends with 2 of the houses.

I guess each generation will have it's own problems to face that weren't the problems the previous generations even knew about or conceptualise.

unstabLized:
Have you ever heard this from your parents when you were growing up? Maybe when you did bad at something, like school, and you tell them that you tried your best, but they come up with some snappy response like "You ONLY studied for 5 hours for ONE test. I had to memorize the entire textbook, and they were twice as thick back then!"

Is the statement really true though? Is "Our current life" easier than what it was back then? Or is it actually harder, and they're just trying to push us? Sure, we have way more/better technology than back then, but is that really a positive point? Or does it just make things more complex?

What do you guys think? Did we have it better back then, or do we have it better now, even though there are way more options in our life?

How they lived their lives is not really relevant to the way you perceive yours, just as much as they don't care how their parents lived, they might say 'my father had to walk 292929 miles to school every day' but really, it doesn't cross their mind when they're sitting in their car driving to their job, being pissed because they are behind an old lady driving 2 mph below the speed-limit.
We don't do all we can do, no one I know "lives up to their potential".

Concerning your test, I never studied very hard, mostly not at all outside scheduled classes. I had a friend who studied super-hard and got the highest grade in every course. Now he's burnt out and working at a kindergarten and I'm studying at the most prestigious science-related Uni in my country.

You shouldn't feel bad about the way you live your life as long as you don't hurt anybody else.

TehCookie:

Forgot to mention I live in America. To top it off I live in Michigan one of the worst unemployment states (and near Flint, the shittiest city in America). My parents and all their friends admit how much easier they had it back in the day. Also when you say education is better I'll ask how, it's better we learn more things but it's also more stressful.

I can only really speak for the UK but year on year more kids achieve better exam grades. They have more choice than ever when it comes to choosing subjects to study, especially at university. University students now come from a wider range of backgrounds than ever before. Opportunities are bought and paid for the poorest students to ensure they too have the ability to study at the highest levels thus breaking the cycle of poverty among working class families (that's the hope anyway).

Britain's education standard as a whole is very good, it's one of the things adults would first admit that is better for kids today.

Meanwhile in America you are struggling to have evolution taught in every school... So I can see why you'd be surprised.

Saying kids are more stressed out about school is probably true, because they probably have much less to be stressed about outside of school. Kids are under pressure to do well for sure. Just be glad you don't live in Japan where the levels of stress and anxiety surrounding education are off the chart.

Thats a relative question, but academically, our generation has it pretty hard in college. I'd say in general if you put a PHD student from the day they graduated in 63' as compared to an undergrad college student today the undergrad would be the PHD's boss. Its interesting because colleges are so proud at how great the students do and so they increase the workload but one thing I'm very certain they don't consider is upwards of 60% of U.S college students supplement their academic life with drugs. For instance many students take Adderal either just for cramming or on a regiment in order to study for their classes. I think this creates a false performance level that can't be sustained. Students like me who actually study chemistry and pharmacology and wouldn't take these drugs for the adverse reasons or just dedicated students, feel the backlash of over work from classes and wonder how everyone else sustains. Then we watch them pop pills and realize its all some facade. Its quite discouraging.

It also doesn't help that those pretentious people who are so quick to judge how much harder their lives are then ours are our PROFESSORS. Needless to say, the "uphill both ways" crowd can kiss my ass when it comes to their hard college lives in 1968.

School is easier but it's ease makes everything else harder, they teach kids to pass tests these days rather than give them the actual knowledge and let the tests come naturally.

This means students leave school or college and go into work not actually knowing much on the subject they're applying for jobs for.

I speak from experience, most of the knowledge in IT that I have is self-taught, not from the 4 years of IT courses I did at college.

I used to get this from my Welsh grandparents (not in an angry way, just in an informational way). But since they were talking about being teenagers during WW2, I believe them!

My parents generally say they had less money when they were my age (early twenties) but that finding a job was actually easier. Just having a degree was enough. Now almost everyone has them, so it takes more to stick out from the crowd. They do think exams have got easier, but since expectations have got higher to match, that doesn't actually mean anything.

RubyT:
Cold War (actual possibility of Apocalypse).

We're more likely to get nuked to oblivion now than we were then. MAD kept Russia and America from firing. MAD isn't going to work against a nation run by people who believe dying in battle is a good result and who genuinely hate our very existence.

If certain nations, which are trying their hardest, manage to acquire ICBMs, we will be closer to Armageddon than we ever were during the cold war.

Everyone has their troubles, because standards change with time, and that is not something you can blame a child for. For example the problems of my generation? From the age of 10, I have been told that with every light i switch on, I destroy our planet.

This is a scaredy age, where every possible threat is taken measured out immensly, and then immediately fed to the public in horrifying hyperbole.

shit aint easy, but it never is, and that's the point. at least I have never had to worry about food.

TestECull:

RubyT:
Cold War (actual possibility of Apocalypse).

We're more likely to get nuked to oblivion now than we were then. MAD kept Russia and America from firing. MAD isn't going to work against a nation run by people who believe dying in battle is a good result and who genuinely hate our very existence.

If certain nations, which are trying their hardest, manage to acquire ICBMs, we will be closer to Armageddon than we ever were during the cold war.

If you believe that there are whole nations of suicidal people out there, you gotta stop with the Fox News consumption.

The people in power, the ones with the finger on the trigger, from Saddam to King Jong Il, from King Jong Un to Ayatollah Khamenei - all those people labeled crazy by Western propaganda are actually rational, cold-blooded arseholes. NONE of them wants to die prematurely. ALL of them know that firing a nuclear missile will achieve just that.

Even China has nowhere near the nuclear arsenal for the threat of mutual assured destruction, India and Pakistan have a handful or warheads but no ICBM capabilities at all, North Korea has even less warheads and the last missile they tried to demonstrate that was rumored to reach Alaska at best crashed into the sea.
Iran is even behind that.

The countries labeled "rogue states" are trying to get nukes because that greatly decreases the likelihood of US invasion. Not because any of them could reach US soil, but they usually have neighbours (Israel, South Korea, Japan) that are getting nervous and so pressure the US into diplomatic strategies.

MAD was horrible. Because the SU and the USA had the capabilities to wipe out the other side in the first strike, both sides had mechanisms in place that would engage Apocalypse mode if signs of that first strike were detected.
At least once, it is documented that the Soviet mechanism detected a full first strike by the USA and it was reportedly one guy who kept his cool and prevented the end of days.

The only country that can currently blow anybody into oblivion with their nukes is the US.

I believe that exposure to hyperbolic 24-hour-"news"-networks and Internet discussion forums that tend to be cynical at best has turned the post cold war generation into a bunch of over-anxious doomsayers.
I can only imagine what would have happend if Fox News and online forums had been around for the Cuban missile Crisis.

My mum tells me this occasionally. I tell her that she never had to deal with depression. I know that this doesn't apply to everyone but its my experience with this topic.

I am so sick of hearing this from my parents, especially my mother. Everything I do is "easier" that what she did. The flip side is that the world is now "awful" and everything was much nicer in the 50s/60s. No really, it was.

unstabLized:
Have you ever heard this from your parents when you were growing up? Maybe when you did bad at something, like school, and you tell them that you tried your best, but they come up with some snappy response like "You ONLY studied for 5 hours for ONE test. I had to memorize the entire textbook, and they were twice as thick back then!"

Is the statement really true though? Is "Our current life" easier than what it was back then? Or is it actually harder, and they're just trying to push us? Sure, we have way more/better technology than back then, but is that really a positive point? Or does it just make things more complex?

What do you guys think? Did we have it better back then, or do we have it better now, even though there are way more options in our life?

Every generation in Western culture since the 1200s has had an easier life than their parents. Scientific advancement does wonders for that.

Now, that's not to say that each generation hasn't had their problems, or that these problems are insignificant, simply that when restricted to simply living, our lives are much easier than our parents, as their lives were/are easier than their parents' and so on. The actual distinction between two generations is actually the most pronounced in all of human history with the gap between Gen X and their kids. Technology is advancing at such a rapid pace that the lives of each are hugely different.

I've had a few "we had it harder than you" conversations with my parents to which I politely remind them that they should be nice to me because I'm their tech support and because it was their generation that ruined the economy in 2008 which has had, as one of its main effects, the effect of making things incredibly difficult for my generation.

Pretty sure I read an article somewhere that said the 70s were the best time to grow up in, and current times are one of the worst.
I also remember someone calling up on the radio (this was back when the cap on tuition fees was being raised to 9000) who said our generation get "everything for nothing". That pissed me off quite a bit; his generation didn't have to pay a penny.
I think too many people associate technological and economic advances with a better quality of life (in terms of happiness etc).

RubyT:

If you believe that there are whole nations of suicidal people out there, you gotta stop with the Fox News consumption.

1: Last time I watched anything on FOX NASCAR was still good.

2: The public doesn't have to be suicidal. the nation just needs to be in the grip of a regime that doesn't give half a shit about it's population and doesn't care if said population gets obliterated. North Korea would be a pretty good example of a regime that doesn't give half a shit about it's citizens. I fully expect them to do something stupid as soon as they get ICBMs.

MAD was horrible. Because the SU and the USA had the capabilities to wipe out the other side in the first strike, both sides had mechanisms in place that would engage Apocalypse mode if signs of that first strike were detected.

MAD is the only reason you and I exist. If it wasn't for MAD the political dickwaving way back in 1962 would have ended in mushroom clouds.

At least once, it is documented that the Soviet mechanism detected a full first strike by the USA and it was reportedly one guy who kept his cool and prevented the end of days.

Wrong. Even if that guy had forwarded that on, the Kremlin wasn't stupid. They wouldn't have launched on one report from one station knowing that if they launch on a false positive the US will wipe Russia off the face of the earth. They would have waited until that hostile launch was confirmed by several early warning stations.

The only country that can currently blow anybody into oblivion with their nukes is the US.

Oh god, you can't be serious.

Russia still has enough of a stockpile to eradicate the entire planet of human life, nevermind one country. Most of Europe has access to our stockpile as well, and Israel might as well have us by the balls. I'm sure they could obtain launch codes if they pressed the issue.

You're naive as fuck if you believe the USA is the only nuclear power with enough warheads to wipe an entire county out.

I believe that exposure to hyperbolic 24-hour-"news"-networks

which I haven't watched in nine or ten years. At all. Fuck the news.

and Internet discussion forums that tend to be cynical at best has turned the post cold war generation into a bunch of over-anxious doomsayers.

Get your head out of the clouds and just look at the political landscape right now. We're just as close, if not closer, to nuclear Armageddon than we were during the cold war, and we're facing enemies MAD won't work against. North Korea, for example, doesn't give a shit about it's populace. Give it access to reliable ICBMs and I all but guarantee they'll do something stupid with them.

Modern society will end in a nuclear fire, and I believe we'll live to see the mushroom clouds.

I can only imagine what would have happend if Fox News and online forums had been around for the Cuban missile Crisis.

Fox was around...and honestly it wouldn't be that big a spectacle. Discussion forums existed back then too, what do you think people did in the break room at work? Same thing we're doing here: Bullshit each other and talk politics.

CrimsonBlaze:
With all the advantages that kids have today (the internet, social media, video chatting, etc.), there is absolutely no reason that these kids can get any lower than a C in any subject in school (speaking in terms of the K-12 system).

I'm not sure about this particular system but the Higher and Advanced Higher systems were tuned so a certain percentage will get certain grades. A's are usually top 20% or so of the students sitting the exam.

My exams were much more difficult than my father's but we get the same grades because he wasn't taught nearly as well as I am.

Life is better now then it was back then. Life in the future will be even nicer and easier. We are smarter now then we were back then, and the next generation will be smarter then us. We all, across all generations, are of equal worth as human beings. Oneupsmanship is pointless. That's just humanity at work.

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