The perspective of old age

Undertaking the caring of a loved one, with similar duties to those in a care home, being totally housebound, you have a lot of time, either due to circumstances or fatigue, to look back on the past. When that past represents at least three and a half generations, and one is of an analytical trend, it is surprising to me, what you discover.

Life is a series of learning curves, some incredibly steep, and some almost non-existent. The beauty of this type of perspective is that you can see, from your own childhood, through the development of your children, your grandchildren and your great-grandchildren, all the phases, and what is more important, the changes that time has wrought. I write this because it is only now these aspects of life have become clear to me, and I find it so interesting that I feel the need to introduce others to this ploy. When you see little children in their first year or so, not only learning so rabidly, but aping their parents, you realise that they have almost a blank sheet of memory, filling hourly. Then there are the stages of learning, both in education and experience, changing every five or six years, until one day one is proficient enough to be self supporting. It is then that the new phases start with the arrival of the next generation, more responsibility, wider experience both in work and leisure, but often with less time now than would have been the case three generations ago.

It is at this point in the analysis that one might ask the question of what mechanism changes the standards, the attitudes, the tastes, and the politics, generation upon generation. There is no shadow of doubt that if one was to draw a graph of the quality of the changes in the life of the individual, generation upon generation, it would depend on your perspective as to whether the graph rose in jerks ever upwards, or where there were serious dips, or even that the graph started to fall. There are areas such as education, health, welfare and general well-being, where the graph would be rising steeply. When it comes to probity, respect, and political honesty, one has to make one’s own judgement, from one’s own perspective, as no one can decide what is totally best for others. This I believe is the stumbling block of the nanny state, where they’re so busy trying to anticipate and cure what they see as the wrongs in society, that they hog-tie any chance of individual initiative. Their approach has induced a money grabbing society, ready to sue at the drop of a hat, and I believe removes the initiative the individual’s needs to make his own decisions, even if he has to suffer the consequences.

TV advertising, TV game shows and TV talk shows have changed more than anything over time. Today it seems that razzmatazz takes the place of quality, the screen is shouting and screaming at you as you sit in your chair, it is crude, cheap and I believe counter-productive because it is setting new standards of aesthetic which is downgraded. Quality is being sacrificed for all those reasons I have said, and TV has more influence on the young than probably any other medium. The crude drawings are accepted by the children because there is no alternative choice, and taken on board and loved, as golly-wogs and teddy bears were in my day, but let’s face it, aesthetically they really are crude, and in my estimate, totally ugly. Industry has now taught us that throwaway is easier and cheaper than repair. What it hasn’t taught us is that in many cases quality is being sacrificed for commercial expediency. The advertisements advising us to claim, was something we would never have dreamed of before, is an element of the get rich quick at somebody else’s expense, mentality, demonstrated by the way in which pension funds are stolen, and is a trend that my perspective finds to be prevalent in practically every walk of society today.

The question I asked after all this, is has the graph slumped nearly off the board, or has it even further to slump?

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