When Less Was More

This blog has become a highlighter for other controversialist writers, pointing you towards writers prepared to go againt the tide of mainsteam opinion, to chalenge the orthodoxy. Today the link is to an article by the excellent Deborah Orr, a true liberal who is commenting on the persistent whining of the progressive left about public spending cuts in the coalition’s budget. The terminally naive “progressive left” are labouring under the misapprehension that the debt funded good times can co on for ever, all the government has to do is keep printing money. Good food, luxury goods, clothes and holidays have been ridiculously cheap for 30 years. That’s why the drop in living standards will be tough. All we can do however is brace ourselves and get ready to ride out the storm.

Deborah Orr writes: Already, I look back, like some ancient matriarch in a bad television movie, telling the story of the world through her memories. I’m only 47, and I cannot believe how much life in Britain has changed in my time. (For a start, “only 47” wasn’t said much in 1962, except perhaps on the occasion of death.) I think of my late father, when I was little…
Why The Financial Crisis Is Going To Hurt

And if that depressed you take a look at this clip from 1970s TV programme Tiswaz, a show that typified and era when we all had less but seemed to be much happier.

The Bucket Of Water Song

3 thoughts on “When Less Was More

  1. I thought I’d commented on this once. Am I going senile?

    How does the author know what was said much in 1962 I wonder – if she’s 47? I’m two years older than that and I’m hard pressed to remember what people were saying when I was 12 months old or less.

    I’m in the process of offloading as much of my possessions as possible. After a fire I can still smell smoke on some of them and the rest just seem to have bad memories attached and are just so much baggage. You never quite realise how much stuff you have until you have to move it – unplanned in less than three weeks and then start cleaning it, piece by piece. Amazing how quickly you can go ‘off’ the ownership of stuff.

    So I definitely agree that less is more.

    My memories of the 70’s are way different though. I remember the first video game machines that played Pong, digital watches, colour tv, a huge tape recording/multi-stack record player, calculators, solar powered calculators, battery powered action toys and a remote control doll that did tumble tosses. Transistor radios, clackers, deelyboppers (I think that’s what they were called – those things on springs you wore on your head like antennae), free plastic jewelry with Bunty comics, piles of comics and tons of Disney themed toys and Battling Tops.

    There seemed to be quite a lot of stuff and the only people I knew who made dresses were our domestic science teacher and my father. I was solidly middle class but the kids I was at school with weren’t and they had far more ‘stuff’ than I did – remember Xmas term at primary school when we were allowed to bring toys in on the last two days? I just had books, but I gazed in envy at their Mattel goodies, etch-a-sketch, spirograph and MouseTrap being just three of the things I yearned for and never had.

    One of my neighbours worked in a coal mine and washed in a tin bath in front of the fire though. They had an outside loo which was very usual in those days and no bathroom, just a tiny kitchen and a sink.

    I have no idea where I’m going with this so I’ll stop. 🙂


    1. Perhaps she has read a lot of books and seen a lot of films set in the early 1960s. What she means is 47 was old then, unlike my generation who at 47 were looking forward to another 35 or 40 years in 1962 at 47 you had one foot in the grave. While we have foreign travel, boat or sports car ownership and illicit love afairs still very much on the agenda the 47 year old in 1962 lived in fear of haemerroids, digestion problems and poverty.

      Yeah, there was lots of stuff and wasn’t it crap (don’y say “no” I was a market trader, I sold it. By the eighties when I’d gone back into my first career, computers, my kids had teles and hi – fi in their room but they were unusual because I was on contractors money. Lets face it clackers don’t compare with a tele.

      Now such luxuries are de rigeur but all bought on debt.


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