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The good old days or the present?

Do you yearn for the simpler times of old without modern complications? Or do you prefer today and the technology we have to hand? Why?

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Jnei 8 Mar 25

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I hear older people say this. I think of the antiques that I have come across. The effort that people put into doing simple tasks like laundry and all the things it would take to a accomplish that goal. From making the lye soap to boiling water on a campfire. Makes me think that with the technology we become lazier. It is simple now something made cheaply in a foreign country we use it for a short time, it wears out quickly. Then we toss it in a trash heap and just buy a new one made with as cheap labor and materials from a foreign country.


I don't think that there ever really were good old times. I think that nostalgia helps to fool ourselves into thinking the past was better than it was.

LEPeff Level 8 Mar 25, 2018

I'll take modern complications over the past when we didn't have access to information and knowledge like we have now and there's no way I'd want to be a woman back in those "simpler" times.


I don't think any rational person would want to go back to the times when slavery was legal, women couldn't vote, churches had all the power.

You couldn't immediately access whatever music you wanted, whatever information you wanted, no matter where you were.

You had to carry money everywhere you went, because banks didn't share information, sometimes banks didn't even recognize currency printed by opposing banks.

Medical technology was a joke compared to today.

I know I'm mixing some time periods, just covering all the bases. The fact is, we have a much better life today than ever before in history.


I'm nostalgic for the past and I celebrate the present.
And if I yearn for anything, I yearn to see what the future holds.


I live in the present - returning to the past doen't make sense to me.


There are aspects of both the past and present that I would prefer.


They may have seemed simpler at the time but in actuality, they weren't.

Living in the now!


I'm divided, but lean towards modern day. I'd hate to be without modern technology. I'm still quite frustrated that the Worldwide Web hadn't evolved well enough to help me figure out my gender identity and sexuality back in my teens and twenties. If it had, my life would have been very different. Not necessarily better, but certainly different.

But I feel sorry for my son. 13 years old tomorrow. His social network is almost entirely electronic. At age 6, I was out on my bicycle all day. If my mum was lucky, I'd have told her where I was going and I'd have stuck to the plan. But once out and roaming around, anything could happen.

Now, their feet are practically nailed to the floor. We're all petrified of the child molesters who were always out there, but who now have the publicity. And since nobody else is letting their kids go free range these days, that makes yours all the more likely to be a target if you break the mould. I think he's more than ready for less supervision, but to give him more freedom would make me 'a bad parent.'

If we could have today's technology with yesterday's freedom, then that would be the best time to be alive.

I agree, @NicoleCadmium, that the Internet could have helped you in your youth, in part because it would let you find out that you're not alone. I was quite out of place in the area I grew up and it would have been such a relief to find that out without having to leave town.

My daughter doesn't know that she lost any freedom, but she has an extensive circle of friends from around the world (as do I), and she's online chatting with them all day long, on her laptop and on her phone. Some have visited us, but others she may never meet. She is never alone unless she wants to be. I think it's given her confidence, and allowed her to grow more in her interests. It's also given her a wider world view. I wish I'd had that at her age! You're not a bad parent ... go with your instincts.


good old days are for people with selective memories !


This sentiment is called Juvenoia. And every generation acquires it.

Socrates: "The children now love luxury. They have bad manners, contempt for authority; they show disrespect for elders and love chatter in place of exercise."

1900's Romain Rolland: "[people of the younger generation are] passionately in love with pleasure and violent games, easily duped."

In 1871, the Sunday Magazine published something that is relevant today in regards to texting. "Now we fire off a multitude of rapid and short notes, instead of sitting down to have a good talk over a real sheet of paper."

VSauce, an educational YouTuber, aka Michael Stevens, published a video essay on this several years ago.

(This comment was largely copied from a previous comment that I made on a similar question from a couple of months ago.)

Juvenoia is the fear that changes in society, for example social media, are having an adverse effect on young people. That sentiment is not being expressed here.

@Jnei Ahhh...I misunderstood. Yearning "for the simpler times of old without modern complications" sounds like a fear for "changes in society" - for me. Sorry about that.

@SamKerry Fair play 🙂

Wow, @SamKerry, I've always believed this and never knew there was a name for it!


The good old days never really existed. Everything is whitewashed by time and storytelling.


The past. Modern society is degenerate and shameful.

Take me back the 1970,s through the early 90,s please

@Robbo1847 the 40's and 50's for me please, before boomers fucked it all up for the rest of us.


For me, it's all about the present. I like the fact that fifty percent of children don't die before they're five. I like the fact that the vast majority of women survive childbirth, and that women are no longer expected to produce another baby every year from age 14-30, and can vote, and can own property, and that their husbands aren't allowed to rape them (in progressive countries, anyway), and that women can vote. I like the fact that men can vote too, rather than just the aristocratic ones; and the fact that the majority of men understand that beating their partner is not acceptable. It's good that poor children receive an education (but it's shocking that rich children still get a better one. It's good that black people are no longer kept as slaves, and that when someone argues that Jews are responsible for all the world's problems everyone else says they're a nutjob racist instead of launching a pogrom, and that homosexuals are no longer imprisoned for being homosexual - and and I'm very glad that anyone who dislikes other human beings because of the colour of their skin, their race, their religion or their sexuality and feels that physical violence is acceptable will rapidly find out it isn't and will be imprisoned. I like having water I can drink without getting cholera, I've very much enjoyed never having smallpox, polio or bubonic plague. I love being able to talk to people I'd never otherwise have met on this site.

And I can think of many more... in fact, I fail to see what was so good about the good old days.

Jnei Level 8 Mar 25, 2018

And yet, I believe that we still have a long way to go.
We need to end wars, poverty, hunger, homelessness, disease etc etc..
However, IMHO, the Capitalist system appears unable and in many instances, unwilling to change the status quo. We try to address the above mentioned problems, agonizing about the cause of poverty; wringing our hands about, wars, terrorism and gun violence for instance, yet we never seem to be able to connect the dots and say, perhaps it is the fault of the sysyem itself. Why to we look at problems on the micro level without looking at things as they are: a systemic macro- level problem?



Nothing has EVER been "simple," unless you are viewing the past through a pair of rose-tinted specs-or, more-properly termed "white men's nostalgia" specs! The past that these people yearn for as "simple" only seems so, IF you accept their rules and happen to be on the side that MAKES the rules, i.e. a white Xian male with money and power. Otherwise, the only thing simple about the past is that you lived under other people's restrictive and all-too-often unjust and harsh laws. Just ask any minority and/or female and/or member of the LGBTQ community. Snort.


it's all perspective


Since time only moves in one direction (until science figures out how to do otherwise), it seems pointless and futile to wish for the good old days. There is much I do not like about the world we live in today, but the good old days tend to be remembered only in terms of the "good" things and not what wasn't so great. Being happy and thankful for this moment is "living". While this world can be dauntingly heartless and full of negativity, we can each shape our moments by focusing on what is good (and there is always something to find) good in our lives. Like in this moment for me to ba able to share this thought and know there are others here who will relate to it without berating or belittling me....which places like facebook seem full of.


I don't really think about it, I was born when I was born. I've made choices to live differently than most Americans, but I don't think less of people for the choices they make. (Well, maybe I do, they're sheeple 😉) Things weren't necessarily simple or better in the old days. People died from minor crap that we can take care of simply now. JFK's baby died of Hylaine Memebrane Diesease which now we call IRDS Infant Respriatory Distress Syndrome. In 1957 95% of babies with HMD died. Today 95% of babies with IRDS survive. Women had fewer rights, Women stayed married becasue they had no choice. I needed my dad's signature when I was 18 to join the Army because I am FEMALE. OMG, that helped to clarify, for all the shit that is happening in the world, I'm so glad I wasn't born in my grandmother's day.


How about both?


Now. I have more technology than I can use, but I can still write a letter by hand or knit something when the urge strikes.


The good old days weren't so good when they were happening. Looking backward prevents appreciation of today.


It doesn't matter. There are trade-off in almost everything. It is seldom simple when human beings are involved regardless of technology.


I kinda doubt that everything was simple in the good old days. We get to pee inside now. That's a good thing, especially after day, when it's below freezing..

jeffy Level 7 Mar 25, 2018

Yeah I don't think there was "good old days". There were certainly parts I'd go back to if I could, though...Theres a lot of first time experiences I'd like to have again. (No, not that kind of experience 😛 )

But like, playing a video game or reading a book or watching a movie that moved you more than any piece had done before. and you want that feeling back


I owuld like a cleaner world things have changed so much even in my lifetime, would love to have seen this country as my grandparents did,


I like now but things are not the same or improved with our technologies. In my days work was easy to find and even minimum wage was sufficient.
Money was not that much of a frightening thing.

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