Monday, June 4, 2012

Looking back at how we once lived

Many Americans fail to realize how much our standard of living has improved in the past 60 to 90 years. I was flipping through some old family photos this weekend that brought the message home.

This is what it looked like when my granddad taught at a one room school in rural eastern Kentucky.

This is what it looked like when granddad farmed his land a little later in life.

Time was, you felt lucky if you had a motorized vehicle to help run the farm. 

Many Americans are now living at unsustainable levels of luxury and convenience. A lot of the stuff we take for granted comes our way because our households and/or government are financed by debt, not cash on hand.

Government and individuals have had plenty of warning, yet have failed to move to more sustainable models. When the next economic crisis comes, how far back will our standard of living be forced to re-set?

I'm not saying we'll slide back to the rudimentary levels presented here. But even if not, to our pampered lives, it might feel like it. And some folks might be hit harder than others. Plenty of stuff we take for granted today might go away, or just be priced out of reach. 

1 comment:

  1. Western science and engineering made energy cheaper and easier to use than ever before in history. The energy to build fancy schools, farm with tractors, build fancy family houses, travel by car and truck on paved roads and all else that we assume in our affluent modern world. The single most destructive aspect of leftist ideas is the proposition that human life can be made better while restricting access to cheap and easy to use energy.