Music to prove the decadence and decline of our civilization

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I often wonder if I’m just nostalgic, remembering better days that weren’t that great. Than I listen to the music that I loved in those days. No, things really were better. Every Wednesday, I’ll post a song that shows where we were just 30 years ago, compared to now. Behold, real art, and live no less. Compare to Miley Cyrus.

5 thoughts on “Music to prove the decadence and decline of our civilization

    uvalduvalcuckoo said:
    May 28, 2015 at 1:30 am

    Doug, you’re shooting a fish in a barrel on this. I think we’re very close to the same age but when it comes to music, every generation says the newest generation’s music sucks. In our case (GenXer’s), i think we have the most legitimate case and it’s not just old grey beard butthurt. The commercialization of music and the specific approach of using math and statistics to determine what a hit will be, coupled with the control of distribution (yah, one could argue the distribution has been largely decentralized in the last few years but that’s still materializing) has made music a very different creature (there’s a documentary , i believe it’s called Who Killed the Music or something similar that really highlights this well and even though it’s probably 10-15 years old at this point, everything in it is still relevant other than the very recent decentralization of distribution). Recommender systems however have such an influence they offset a lot of the decentralization. That’s a longwinded way of saying, I’ll give you Miley Cyrus but counter with Debbie Gibson or Tiffany. Hell when I was in college, New Kids on the Block were the biggest ‘pop’ band and it’s hard to say anything now is more plastic or less talented then them. When you compare time periods, it’s very easy to be influenced by confirmation bias b/c it depends on memory – you inevitably remember the good or bad disproportionately. That’s in part why I always get my feathers ruffled over the whole “Coarsening of culture meme’ – yes, there’s a lot of evidence of it but there’s a lot one could point to that has offset it (hell if anything it’s went too far in the other direction). If you wanted to make the case of the ‘pussification’ of America, that’s one place there’s little to no counter argument – from Trigger Warnings and Safe Rooms to being arrested for having Free Range kids or having parents hassled legally for letting kids skateboard in the driveway without helmets, we’ve definitely been pussified (hopefully that language is ok, my apologies if that offends any readers here) . I think another area (and admittedly, I’m way OT on this) that you touch upon a lot that’s got a lot of merit is the lessening of respect for Authority. People clearly have much much less respect for classical institutions and for instance, the police (although I’d humbly submit the cops of ‘our’ day did a lot more to earn respect than many due today – the reasons for which are complex and a different discussion). Anyway, yah, i just wrote a small book,largely off topic on a pretty simple topic. Your posts are always well thought out and I really look forward to seeing what you write with the new focus – on the music though, I think you’re shooting fish in a barrel.

    magus71 responded:
    May 28, 2015 at 2:54 am

    Well, i’ll show in a few posts how MTV hurt music. Art is always a point of contention because the quality is considered a subjective matter. Basically saying that throwing feces at a wall is art if someone likes it. Or that strippers are as equally artful as ballet dancers. But I digress. The fact is though, that many yung kids haven’t heard this music. Many times when they do, they say, ” hey, I like this.” Also, I like music from before I was even born when compared to much modern music.

    ajmacdonaldjr said:
    May 28, 2015 at 4:20 am

    I’m not sure how old you are, but our society has been in decline for a long, long time. In many ways it’s actually more stable now than it was during the 1960s. You may not be old enough to remember, but we had many riots in those day…. certainly more then than we have today. It’s true our moral standards have lowered since then, but the fabric of our society is actually more stable now than it was then. I’m old enough to remember the assassination of JFK, MLK (and the riots afterwards) and RFK. Assassinations of this type are very destabilizing. (Just think: Mexico.) When was the last time a US politician was assassinated? Regan? He survived, and that was in 1981. Gabby Giffords (2011) nearly became the second US Rep to be killed while in office, but she, too, survived. The only US Rep to be killed in office is still Leo Ryan (D-CA) who was killed at Jonestown, Guyana in 1978. I was in the Army at the time he was killed, and I actually flew from Andrews AFB to Travis AFB in a C-141 along with hundreds of bodies of the dead from Jonestown (who had arrived at Andrews AFB from Dover AFB). I was the only living passenger on that flight. Granted, things are bad today, no doubt, but society is pretty stable nonetheless. Fucked up morally, yes… but fairly stable. I’m of the opinion much of the media hype about police shooting “unarmed black men” is designed to increase police powers. Think about it… Cui bono? Who is benefitting from all this hype? Blacks have never appeared more dangerous and foolish, and police have never had greater support from white, hispanic, and asian working taxpayers. Think about it…. if you were black and wanted to choose a victim of police violence would you choose Michael Brown? No. So who did choose Michael Brown? Blacks? Or the media? Don’t despair… your government has things under control. The media is basically running psyops and you can’t fall for those like everyone else is. After watching the riots in Baltimore, me and a lot of people like me said “I’m glad the police have all that military hardware, because they need it.” And just a year ago I was decrying the militarization of the police. Now I’m glad for it. As John Adams said: “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”. The opposite is also true: “An immoral and irreligious people require a police state.” And that’s were we are today.

    uvalduvalcuckoo said:
    May 29, 2015 at 12:23 am

    Magus, the Stripper/Ballet Dichotomy is Dirty Pool – it’s being a bad winner. Sure, you’re right, but couldn’t you compare Twerk champions to ballet dancers or something like that – did you have to use Strippers – something that provides so many cherished memories (although I’m a ballet fan, even though we don’t have a great cultural scene where I live our ballet and symphony does get some real quality). Our gentlemans clubs, not so much.

    ajmacdonaldjr said:
    May 31, 2015 at 9:20 pm

    Supporters of police rally in front of Baltimore City Hall

    Baltimore, Maryland (May 30, 2015) “Some 150 supporters of the Baltimore Police Department marched in the sweltering midday heat Saturday and chanted “Blue lives matter” in front of City Hall, at a time when officers say they are facing unfair scrutiny as they try to do their jobs…”

    Continue reading: Supporters of police rally in front of Baltimore City Hall

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