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Posted by mlarrabee (3091 posts) 1 year, 1 month ago

Poll: You have to completely remove three decades on this list from history. Which do you choose? (232 votes)

1930s 63%
1940s 55%
1950s 32%
1960s 20%
1970s 24%
1980s 16%
1990s 12%
2000s 33%
2010s - The impossible answer since removing this decade removes this poll. 25%

I know your favorite decades. Now I want to know your least favorites.

Removing a decade deletes it completely--it never happened.

#51 Posted by forkboy (1200 posts) -

Wait, why can't I delete the 1910s? Or for that matter, the 1770s?

Also, if I say deleted the 50s then rock'n'roll didn't happen. And so the face of popular music changes completely. Not to mention there'd just be no Buddy Holly & The Crickets, or Frank Sinatra's best album. You can't erase history without changing everything that came after it.

For worst decades, well, lets say the 1770s for the American Revolution. I sincerely believe the world would be a better place if the USA got its independence later, like Canada. The 1910s because World War 1 just fucked up the rest of the 20th century between the rise of the Bolsheviks, millions dead, the punitive "peace" treaty that basically guaranteed another war down the line and the rise of extremist nationalists in Germany. And ooooh. The third one is a toughy. Tempted to say the 40s solely because "fuck the baby boomers" (oh, and the war), but I'd lose some bitchin' jazz and country and blues so nah. Could go for the 1st decade AD. No birth of Jesus of Nazareth would have a fascinating impact on world history. Yeah, that'll do, can't think of anything else more intriguing than that.

#52 Posted by Brodehouse (10240 posts) -

@forkboy said:

No birth of Jesus of Nazareth would have a fascinating impact on world history. Yeah, that'll do, can't think of anything else more intriguing than that.

I think you could get the same results if you stopped Emperor Constantine from converting.

#53 Edited by Video_Game_King (36271 posts) -

@brodehouse: @forkboy:

Would a lot change, though? So far, the only thing that I can see Christianity having a major impact on would be the Crusades, and even then, you could.....wait....Islam might be fucked, too. Yea, the impact would be greater than I'd initially imagine, although some stuff wouldn't really change (the Roman Empire's fall, really anything to do with China until Qing, etc.).

#54 Edited by Brodehouse (10240 posts) -

@video_game_king: Oh yeah, it's a doozy. There's a ton of incredible things it can affect even before the 11th century Crusades. Without Constantine converting, Christianity is just one of hundreds of faiths competing in Rome, though I suppose it's possible it catches on without him, some future Emperor becomes Christian. Before even the Crusades, the thing I'm looking at is what happens to the tribal pagan societies in Western Europe. Without Christianity as the official religion of the Romans, does the man who becomes Gregory of Tours become that man, does he convert Clovis of the Franks? Without the incentive to become Holy Roman Emperor, does Charlemagne carry out the bloody forced conversion of the pagan Gauls? Without a united Christian defense, does Charles Martel successfully defend France from the Moors? Would the Moors even exist, would the lack of a powerful foreign Judeo-Christian empire affect the warlord Muhammed's proselytization? If the Judeo-Christian philosophy is not seen as dominant in that era, is there even motivation for schism? Does the same man launch the same crusade under different circumstances, does he make war at all?

Considering how incredibly the world would look only by 1000 CE, can you even imagine trying to do it for 2013?

#55 Posted by I_Stay_Puft (3942 posts) -

1930,1940, and 1990. Stop Fubu Jeff from occurring.

#56 Edited by Fredchuckdave (6270 posts) -

@brodehouse: If you read Aristotle it seems the Western world was on track to form some sort of unified monotheism regardless; the King/God dichotomy is just too strong to ignore. And personally (as a Christian) I think monotheism is more or less identical across the board, same conception of God, similar rules and similar patriarchy. In a non communal society pagan religions can only hold so much sway.

#57 Edited by Video_Game_King (36271 posts) -

@brodehouse:

I imagine you could still define a lot of this stuff in terms of sociopolitical needs of the time. Muhammad would still have to deal with a fractured Bedouin culture (wait, would Christianity affect that, too?), so Islam might still take off, albeit in a different form. Europe still seems a grab bag, though, at least after the fall of Rome.

#58 Edited by Brodehouse (10240 posts) -

@fredchuckdave said:

@brodehouse: If you read Aristotle it seems the Western world was on track to form some sort of unified monotheism regardless; the King/God dichotomy is just too strong to ignore. And personally (as a Christian) I think monotheism is more or less identical across the board, same conception of God, similar rules and similar patriarchy.

Yeah, I can see that. It is easier to establish an all-encompassing doctrinal process when you can claim ultimate authority in a single form that you absolutely cannot judge in any way, rather than a pantheon or table of gods where each god has their own thing and can be judged on their own merits.

Personally, I was raised in a monotheistic culture, which made polytheistic cultures seem plainly wrong. But it was being acquainted with those cultures that actually allowed me to be critical of monotheism, being made aware of 40,000 other religions made me critical of the one I was handed.

@brodehouse:

I imagine you could still define a lot of this stuff in terms of sociopolitical needs of the time. Muhammad would still have to deal with a fractured Bedouin culture (wait, would Christianity affect that, too?), so Islam might still take off, albeit in a different form. Europe still seems a grab bag, though, at least after the fall of Rome.

We could have all believed in giant white men with beards and hammers. Instead of the Prince of Peace, the son of God had a magic fucking hammer that returned to his hand. Did God exist before all things, no! He tore out his eye and dropped it in a magic pool of water and now he knows everything. Revelations is an awesome book, but what if it had God himself being eaten by a giant fucking wolf?

#59 Posted by Jeust (10905 posts) -

@joshwent said:

Removing any time would completely alter what happened after it... so... i don't get it.

Not to mention that all things follow a logic string of events, and even if a decade would be erased, the next one would take its place almost exactly like the one before.

#60 Posted by Brodehouse (10240 posts) -

@jeust said:

@joshwent said:

Removing any time would completely alter what happened after it... so... i don't get it.

Not to mention that all things follow a logic string of events, and even if a decade would be erased, the next one would take its place almost exactly like the one before.

I just took it to mean "which decades are you least happy with". The physical reality of the situation is perhaps not the response sought.

#61 Edited by DonutFever (3553 posts) -

'30s (Depression), '40s (Holocaust), and the 50s because the change that the '60s brought about would come quicker.

#62 Edited by Video_Game_King (36271 posts) -

@brodehouse:

Would we even get those stories? Keep in mind that most of our knowledge of Norse mythos comes from after Christianity came to Scandinavia, meaning it influenced a lot of Norse stories or whatever. Personally, I'd hope you guys would just adopt Egyptian polytheism, because that doesn't get enough love.

#63 Edited by Counterclockwork87 (756 posts) -

@demoskinos said:

@monetarydread said:

80's - Because that was the worst decade for all media, movies were the worst, tv was the worst, music was the worst, video games were the worst.

Sir, you are certifiably insane. Some of the best music, movies and games came out of the 80's.

He's right. The best movie of the 80's was probably Raging Bull (and that came out 1980). How do you even compare it to the 70's with movies like both Godfathers, Taxi Driver, Chinatown, Network, Deer Hunter, Apocalypse Now...and the glut of stuff that came out in the 90's. And we're not even talking foreign films, in decades like 50's and 60's the stuff made in France/Italy/Japan was on another level. The 90's was a foreign film revival that continued into the 2000s. Kieslowski? I think most film critics would cite the 80s as a down decade. If you want a quick recap just look at the best picture nominees from the oscars every year from 1980 until 1989. How many really great films are there? Not much.

TV has gotten much better in recent years, and to me the 80s wasn't a great television decade, though not horrible.

Music was also OK. Yes it had Michael Jackson and Prince, and bands like The Pixies, U2, Guns, The Smiths, The Replacements, Genesis...but I think overall the 70s and 90s were better musical decades with bands like Led Zeppelin/Black Sabbath/Allman Bros/Zappa/Springsteen/Eagles/Stevie Wonder/Elton John/Radiohead/Nirvana/Pearl Jam/Smashing Pumpkins. But 80's had some good stuff, only issue with the 80's was the production was bad, and everything from then sounds super dated now.

Video games I can't agree with because 80's were obviously better than 70's and 60's! 90's was better for games though for, again, obvious reasons.

But c'mon, the 80's were a really bad decade for film and pales compared to some other decades tv/music wise to me as well.

#64 Edited by Brodehouse (10240 posts) -

@counterclockwork87: I agree with your summation, though I would suggest looking at 0 years as the final year of a decade rather than the first. The 0 year will look more like the preceding decade than the following, for obvious reasons. I suppose you can say that same thing about any year, but I don't know. 1980 having The Wall, Raging Bull and the Iranian hostage crisis makes it seem exactly like the final summation of the 70s rather than the opening statement of the 80s. Compare to 81 with Duran Duran, Raiders of the Lost Ark, and the inauguration of Ronald Reagan. Now we're in something that is remarkably "80s".

1990 had Milli Vanilla and Paula Abdul, Total Recall and the end of the Cold War. 1991 had Blood Sugar Sex Magik and Ten, Terminator 2 and the Gulf War. I feel like the latter is more decidedly "90s", though I am picking the evidence to support my claim :)

#65 Posted by Xeiphyer (5614 posts) -

30's, 40's, 50's easy. WWII, Great Depression, and just general shittyness of the world.

#66 Edited by MonkeyKing1969 (3142 posts) -

Under the assumption that the GOOD & BAD of each decade would be skipped over but the GOOD and BAD of the remaining decades stays the same I would say 40s, 50s, and 60s. Those were the decades of the military industrial complex, Cold War idocy, those were the decades where we have a shit-fit over Communism. And, those were the decades where racism, bigotry, and sexism doubled down on oppression as a last gasp,.

Again a weird question that doesn't work logically...but I answered it the best I could.

A better question would be what ONE thing would you do in history to make thing different now? What would you do even at the risk of some butterfly effect.

I would introduce Cow Pox, Measles, and Influenza to Central and North America in 1000 AD. Thus giving every aboriginal civilization in North American about 500 years to prepare for the arrival of Europeans. It wasn't warfare the killed American aborigines it was disease. By introducing very mild forms of European diseases early, it would have been a fairer contest.

The whole world would be different if North America was still 95% aboriginal. Without America being de-peopled and used by European powers, much of what happened in Africa,The Middle East, India, South East Asia, and Oceania over the least 500 years would not have occurred.

You might ask, "How would that make things better?" It wouldn't, it would probably mean the world was worse off. There would be more starvation, more disease, more war, less organization, less rule of law, and less freedom without the last 500 years of European domination. However, the world would be a richer place with 300 more nations, 300 more major languages still spoken, and 300 more religions and philosophies still practiced.

#67 Edited by Fredchuckdave (6270 posts) -

@brodehouse: I sort of wish I was born in China for more than just the obvious reasons, the amount of concern for others is simply higher in communal societies. While my faith is unshakable I still have a great interest in especially Taoism and almost consider myself a Taoist for how my logic works. I am usually not one to proselytize but in the occasional situation that I do it is always to an atheist, not to a believer of another faith. Three Kingdoms is a cornerstone of my own philosophical thinking.

#68 Posted by Intro (1212 posts) -

30's for depression, 40's and 60's for war.

#69 Posted by Brodehouse (10240 posts) -

@brodehouse: I sort of wish I was born in China for more than just the obvious reasons, the amount of concern for others is simply higher in communal societies. While my faith is unshakable I still have a great interest in especially Taoism and almost consider myself a Taoist for how my logic works.

I understand, though I feel completely differently. I don't wish to live in a more communal society, because while they are concerned about others, they're also concerned that others conform to the community.

And I'm not pinning any additional brutality or anything on collectivist societies, I think both collectivists and individualists are both capable of incredible brutality; it just expresses itself differently. Individualist brutality is of the highwayman or monarchic 'yours is mine if I can take it' variety, whereas collectivist brutality is in-group out-group derogation.

I guess it's just what do you treasure more; harmony or consent? I'll tolerate consent without harmony but I can't tolerate harmony without consent.

#70 Posted by Veektarius (5065 posts) -

@tobbrobb: FYI WWI was not a candidate for removal.

#71 Posted by Dasacant2 (240 posts) -

@forkboy said:

For worst decades, well, lets say the 1770s for the American Revolution. I sincerely believe the world would be a better place if the USA got its independence later, like Canada.

Why?

#72 Posted by Jeust (10905 posts) -

@jeust said:

@joshwent said:

Removing any time would completely alter what happened after it... so... i don't get it.

Not to mention that all things follow a logic string of events, and even if a decade would be erased, the next one would take its place almost exactly like the one before.

I just took it to mean "which decades are you least happy with". The physical reality of the situation is perhaps not the response sought.

Yeah, you're right.

#73 Posted by Brodehouse (10240 posts) -

@forkboy said:

For worst decades, well, lets say the 1770s for the American Revolution. I sincerely believe the world would be a better place if the USA got its independence later, like Canada.

Why?

There's something to be said of peaceful, diplomatic revolution. Fuzzy example here, but America spilled blood and tears to wrest their independence from the British Crown, drastically shaping American political doctrine for centuries to come. The Spanish American war for instance, probably only happens in the form it does because of the circumstances of American independence. In comparison, Canada 'waited' about 100 years and asked politely for their independence. And it was given to them/us.

It's a fuzzy example, but I can think of little other way to exemplify the difference between American-ness and Canadian-ness. Americans wanted independence and were ready to fight to have it. Canadians wanted independence and were ready to ask politely. In the words of Dave Broadfoot, "Give us liberty, or... what else do you got?"

#74 Posted by ripelivejam (5151 posts) -

@demoskinos said:

@monetarydread said:

80's - Because that was the worst decade for all media, movies were the worst, tv was the worst, music was the worst, video games were the worst.

Sir, you are certifiably insane. Some of the best music, movies and games came out of the 80's.

Yeah I think you need a little introduction into the realm of Tears for Fears

also later Talk Talk

#75 Posted by Dasacant2 (240 posts) -

There's something to be said of peaceful, diplomatic revolution. Fuzzy example here, but America spilled blood and tears to wrest their independence from the British Crown, drastically shaping American political doctrine for centuries to come. The Spanish American war for instance, probably only happens in the form it does because of the circumstances of American independence. In comparison, Canada 'waited' about 100 years and asked politely for their independence. And it was given to them/us.

It's a fuzzy example, but I can think of little other way to exemplify the difference between American-ness and Canadian-ness. Americans wanted independence and were ready to fight to have it. Canadians wanted independence and were ready to ask politely. In the words of Dave Broadfoot, "Give us liberty, or... what else do you got?"

Yeah New Zealand was kind of in the same boat though it was more like everyone just kind of realized we were independent one day. Still I think something as big as the US becoming independent at that time has so many far reaching consequences that I'm not sure you could say reliably whether the world would be better or worse.

#76 Posted by TobbRobb (4877 posts) -

@veektarius: I noticed the poll only stretched to 1930s after posting. But decided it wasn't important enough to edit. I'll leave my last decade to remove up to a dice roll. Seems legit enough.

#77 Edited by Fredchuckdave (6270 posts) -

@brodehouse: Well, in group-out group happens in Capitalist society too, I think that's simply an aspect of human nature not collectivism. A communal society is going to be more resistant to change, but a society that makes small changes to one side depending on an election and then reverts said changes thereafter; or completely stagnates itself isn't exactly a better alternative.

Changes may be slower in a communal thought process but they are also more likely to be permanent; in American society there's still lingering elements of just about everything horrible that refuse to go away. This is the classic Web Dubois vs Booker T Washington debate and I think rather decidedly that Dubois has been proven to be in the wrong; there are wealthy African Americans now but as a whole the group is still extremely marginalized and notions of being PC simply cloud and trivialize the issue.

#78 Edited by Brodehouse (10240 posts) -

@fredchuckdave said:

@brodehouse: Well, in group-out group happens in Capitalist society too, I think that's simply an aspect of human nature not collectivism.

Well obviously, there's no perfectly collectivist society or perfectly individualistic (or socialistic and capitalistic), everywhere I can think of is a mixed economy in some way, I just prefer those that lean individualistic than the inverse. As said, I prioritize consent over harmony.

The part of 'lingering elements', I'd rather have the lingering elements of horrible things and a free explanation of why they're horrible, and allow people to make their own mind, I'd like to gain people's consent. Rather than demand people's consent to hate the horrible things because they are the antithesis of your cultural values. I realize this is really more an argument between free inquiry and dogmatism, but my experience (in the West) is that it's those collectivist aspects of our society that lead to dogmatic echo chambers, whether it's ignorant atavistic bigots or arrogant social darwinists.

Maybe I can explain it as; I believe the rights of the individual are better protected when they are perceived as individuals rather than members of groups, especially regarding things they didn't choose such as the circumstances of their birth. The potential danger in the chaos of liberty is less to me than the potential danger in the order of castes. But I'm more vigilant when it comes to liberty than the average bear and I understand this.

edit: Super tangential, but I think when people complain about political correctness, it's not that it's worse than actual cases of discrimination, or that it's 'the real problem', it's more that it's a bad solution to a real problem. The criticism is that an obsession with feelings and artifice (used as 'how something looks') is a limited solution to discrimination; it's suturing a wound with dental floss. Or worse, when it suggests retributive justice; cutting everyone else up to 'even things out'. The criticism of political correctness is not that it's worse than what it responds to, but that it's less capable of actually righting any wrongs than a more empirical, evidence-based approach.

#79 Edited by Video_Game_King (36271 posts) -

Maybe I can explain it as; I believe the rights of the individual are better protected when they are perceived as individuals rather than members of groups, especially regarding things they didn't choose such as the circumstances of their birth.

I'm not so sure about that. I'm not quite sure how to put it, but wouldn't focusing on crimes against individuals make it more difficult to focus on crimes against groups? That's not the wording I want, but that's about as close as I can get. As clumsy an analogy as this will inevitably end up, it's the difference between seeing fifteen murders and a serial murder case. Or something like that, I dunno.

The potential danger in the chaos of liberty is less to me than the potential danger in the order of castes.

You don't really need to have castes in a collectivist society, although the examples I'm thinking of (India and China) don't exactly help my case. Japan might be better, but I'm not informed enough on that.

#80 Posted by dr_mantas (2134 posts) -

1930-50s. Maybe my country wouldn't have been occupied by Russia, then.

#81 Posted by Brodehouse (10240 posts) -

@brodehouse said:

Maybe I can explain it as; I believe the rights of the individual are better protected when they are perceived as individuals rather than members of groups, especially regarding things they didn't choose such as the circumstances of their birth.

I'm not so sure about that. I'm not quite sure how to put it, but wouldn't focusing on crimes against individuals make it more difficult to focus on crimes against groups? That's not the wording I want, but that's about as close as I can get. As clumsy an analogy as this will inevitably end up, it's the difference between seeing fifteen murders and a serial murder case. Or something like that, I dunno.

Alright. So a 'crime against a group' could be better described as a crime against an individual motivated by their presence in a group. While part of most Western courts make intent a factor, the reason this is morally bad is because an individual has been negatively impacted against their consent. The difference between theft and gifts is consent. The difference between contact sports and assault is consent. Consent is the crux on which our justice system works, it works to protect and guarantee your liberty, and it qualifies victims and criminals in these terms.

A closer analogy to what I'm getting at is seeing a string of murders against one racial group as an attack on that racial group rather than seeing it as 15 people being violated against their consent for their presence in that group. I lean to the latter. Essentially, it's the why of 'why is that terrible?' The reason it is terrible is not because it's an attack on a group which violates their harmony, it's terrible because it's an attack on 15 people which violates their consent. This is a super minor philosophical thing but it's a thing nonetheless.

Staying on murder, murder is bad because you are taking someone's life against their will. I don't want to invoke the issue of assisted suicide or make any statements on that, but you can see the conceptual difference, which is consent.

You don't really need to have castes in a collectivist society, although the examples I'm thinking of (India and China) don't exactly help my case. Japan might be better, but I'm not informed enough on that.

Yes, of course. Castes are an extreme form of collectivism in the same way freedom of speech laws can be seen as the extreme end of individualism (most places don't actually promise as much as the American version does, Canada for instance), but they're just an end result of the process of preferring social harmony over individual will. Just like the opposite is the inverse. The topic of 'hate speech' is one of the crossroads where a society determines which way it will lean. Do they prefer social harmony at the cost of individual will, or individual will at the cost of social harmony? I prefer the latter within reason.

#82 Posted by Video_Game_King (36271 posts) -

@brodehouse:

That first paragraph just feels like a difference of focus, honestly.

Castes are an extreme form of collectivism in the same way freedom of speech laws can be seen as the extreme end of individualism

Not really a fan of the biased language.

Wouldn't Rapture be the extreme form of individualism? At least if we're accepting extremism as bad? An "everyone for themselves" mentality inhibits just as much as a "you're part of this group, don't try and fight it" one does; just in different ways.

#83 Edited by Brodehouse (10240 posts) -

@video_game_king said:

@brodehouse:

That first paragraph just feels like a difference of focus, honestly.

@brodehouse said:

Castes are an extreme form of collectivism in the same way freedom of speech laws can be seen as the extreme end of individualism

Not really a fan of the biased language.

Wouldn't Rapture be the extreme form of individualism? At least if we're accepting extremism as bad? An "everyone for themselves" mentality inhibits just as much as a "you're part of this group, don't try and fight it" one does; just in different ways.

If you feel the word 'extreme' is biased, may I suggest it has more to do with your connotation of it than the actual definition. I used extreme in its exact terms; the farthest point from neutral. A caste system is a more extreme version of collectivism than compared to let's say socialized medicine, in the same way that universal suffrage is a more extreme version of individualism than let's say landed representation. Not that either side is worse, just greater and more intense in scope.

And yeah, Rapture is an extreme form of individualism, I think that was largely the point (Infinite I suppose is the opposite extreme). It was a criticism of Objectivism, which is absolutely a more extreme take on individualism than something like Classical Liberalism. I wouldn't say we 'accept extremism is bad', it's that we recognize our norms as being more moderate. Almost all of us live in mixed economies, there's some aspect of capitalism (if you can buy things you choose it's in some way capitalist) and socialism (if the government provides services it's in some way socialist). We recognize pure individual will can be toxic to a group, and pure social harmony can be toxic to individuals, and essentially try to argue out a system that takes from both, provides the most good and the least bad.

Despite all my crowing about individual this and liberty that, I don't think I would be a very good libertarian because I'm not as bent out of shape about social welfare programs. So it goes.

#84 Posted by Apparatus_Unearth (3284 posts) -

40's, 60's and 70's. Just because of war, nothing too deep.