SPUTNIK AND THE FIFTIES

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Zlatko Waterman
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SPUTNIK AND THE FIFTIES

Post by Zlatko Waterman » October 5th, 2007, 10:51 am

Norman Solomon's exellent article catches the spirit of the Fifties and of the Sputnik event as I remember it:

http://www.antiwar.com/solomon/?articleid=11709

I was twelve years old when Sputnik appeared. I remember seeing the LIFE magazine article ( the covers were still in black-and-white-- like TV-- then . . .).

I was in the seventh grade and in love with Annette Funicello, like most boys my age who watched the Mickey Mouse Club.

In his article, Solomon is successful in pulling together the American cultural zeitgeist with the climate of incipient nuclear violence and Ike's reassuring, fatherly smile and words of comfort on the boob tube.

As a kid, regardless of the turbulence in my home life, I was dedicated to having fun, drawing "space men" flying in their "rocket-ships" on my own time, and learning about radiation and benign Republican guardianship of my nation. Vice President Dick Nixon was waiting to play his part . . .

Solomon's piece is an interesting cultural history lesson.

Read it.


--Z

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stilltrucking
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Post by stilltrucking » October 5th, 2007, 11:44 am

Great Article
Thanks for posting

I heard a sound byte yesterday about LAIKA,

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e_dog
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Post by e_dog » October 5th, 2007, 4:03 pm

The Fifties never existed. It's a media constructed black-and-white myth. Like the later Moon Landing.

Sputnik was invented to promote the Beat Generation, so's they could deny bein' beatniks.
I don't think 'Therefore, I am.' Therefore, I am.

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Post by stilltrucking » October 5th, 2007, 6:01 pm

The Fifties never existed.
then you ain't a baby boomer
you never got your dose of strontium 90
so I suppose if you did not exist in the fifties
than the fifties did not exist for you

Beep beep beep beep beep beep beep

The fifties never existed
except for a few lonely souls at the ends of the continent

and
Laika lives on in legend and song.
meanwhile
Ham the chimp came home a hero
and
And the Hippos Were Boiled in Their Tanks
He paints a grim picture of the fifties
When my mother was watching Queen for A Day in tears
And we were all drinking lots of milk


I had a good time in the fifties

I was almost seventeen
and deep into the mysteries of Brassiere hooks

Sorry for the ramble Norman
I liked the article a lot

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Peevette
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Post by Peevette » October 5th, 2007, 9:02 pm

The Fifties never existed.
Yeah, those drugs can really do that to ya, dude.........

Totally forgot a whole decade in history......amazing......
[i]Some days you're the bug; some days you're the windshield.[/i]

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Post by e_dog » October 5th, 2007, 10:20 pm

How d we know the Fifties were real?

Maybe they were just a delusion created by the '60s?
I don't think 'Therefore, I am.' Therefore, I am.

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mnaz
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Post by mnaz » October 6th, 2007, 4:26 am

the '40's were medieval times, almost the end of time.
the '50s were all about denyin' racism and the end of time.
hell, i've spent 72 percent of my life denyin' the end of time.
the '60s denied the '50s... believe me, it made some sense,
and the '70s were imprisoned by the revolution...
and there have been many since then,
they all tend to run together.

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Post by stilltrucking » October 6th, 2007, 4:42 am

So you sit there with the dull realization that they have killed you. Sentenced you to a long painful death
but what the hell
time and chance comes to every man
Soon after dusk, while turning a skate key or playing with a hula hoop, children might look up to see if they could spot the bright light of a satellite arching across the sky. But they could not see the fallout from nuclear bomb tests, underway for a dozen years by 1958.

The conventional wisdom, reinforced by the press, downplayed fears while trusting the authorities; basic judgments about the latest weapons programs were to be left to the political leaders and their designated experts.

On the weekly prime-time Walt Disney television show, an animated fairy with a magic wand urged youngsters to drink three glasses of milk each day. But airborne strontium-90 from nuclear tests was falling on pastures all over, migrating to cows and then to the milk supply and, finally, to people's bones. Radioactive isotopes from fallout were becoming inseparable from the human diet.

Young people – dubbed "baby boomers," a phrase that both dramatized and trivialized them – were especially vulnerable to strontium-90 as their fast-growing bones absorbed the radioactive isotope along with calcium. The children who did as they were told by drinking plenty of milk ended up heightening the risks – not unlike their parents, who were essentially told to accept the bomb fallout without complaint.

In June 1957 – the same month Nobel Prizewinning chemist Linus Pauling published an article estimating that ten thousand cases of leukemia had already occurred due to U.S. and Soviet nuclear testing – President Eisenhower proclaimed that the American detonations would result in nuclear warheads with much less radioactivity. Ike said that "we have reduced fallout from bombs by nine-tenths," and he pledged that the Nevada explosions would continue in order to "see how clean we can make them."
I remember the fifties plenty good. I remember the sultry summer day they executed the rosenbergs

I remember the day Ike stopped the British, French, and Israeli armies in their tracks. And they backed out of egypt in a hurray

I remember that nice looking flag with the 48 stars
Cotton, hard to burn,
I much prefer these new plastic flags
they give off a nice light
and acrid smoke
a real work of art

Forties don't seem no more mideval than the twenty first century

I wonder what Mayla Scott will do when she becomes president of the united states in 2048. Will there still be Jews living in Palestine?

Where will all the soldiers be in the future will have been.

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Post by stilltrucking » October 6th, 2007, 5:36 am

I abandon all restraint Norman
I have wandered so far
I might as well go for the big kabloona of irrelevancy.


As if the 20th century never happened, and world war one never ended. We still got the cold warriors playing Stratego. Substitute the enemy of the day. Communists, terrorists, democrats. Liberals, neo cons, jews, arabs, the yellow peril, Huns, I mean we can’t seem to live with out enemies. You need an Orwellian score card to keep up with the roster as the friends become enemies, and enemies friends.

Interesting BBC docudrama called the Power of Nightmare. The first part about the fifties in Egypt and the USA.

From a blog about that show:
A very interesting film tracing the rise of our problems from two parallel threads.....

We start with an Egyptian named Kotb or Qutb ( a founder of the Muslim Brotherhood), and his experiences in America which result in his distaste for the excesses of individualism and shallowness. Could it be that his experience was colored by him sporting what looks a lot like a Hitler style mustache... in the USA? Wow, the world turns on the smallest details! Cut to Chicago and Leo Strauss.

Both ideologies want to attack selfishness, both really, truly despising the excesses of what is an essential American trait; Individualism. In fact the film shows them as virtually indistinguishable. It was the 'failure of the liberal dream" that informed both of these groups, although I could make a case that it was not failure so much as hijacking. Anyway, it can't be tolerated, it leads to way too many questions, it must be stopped by creating "powerful and inspiring myths that everyone could believe in... they might not be true but they were necessary."

Both make the fatal mistake of declaring themselves the elite, the vanguard of noble change. The Muslim thread comes off as reactive to the excesses of the West while the Neo Cons specialize in myth making and outright lies... the Noble Lie. All fine and necessary in order to fight relativism and liberalism. Strauss's favorite TV shows were Gunsmoke and Perry Mason. The Matt Dillon military arm of righteous justice and the oh so clever Perry Mason, how many of his clients were guilty, did it matter? Not when your fighting the failure of liberalism and "moral decay"seen during the turmoil of the 60's.


http://homepage.mac.com/kaaawa/iblog/C1 ... 055503187/

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Post by mnaz » October 6th, 2007, 2:58 pm

stilltrucking wrote:I abandon all restraint Norman
I have wandered so far
I might as well go for the big kabloona of irrelevancy.


As if the 20th century never happened, and world war one never ended. We still got the cold warriors playing Stratego. Substitute the enemy of the day. Communists, terrorists, democrats. Liberals, neo cons, jews, arabs, the yellow peril, Huns, I mean we can’t seem to live with out enemies. You need an Orwellian score card to keep up with the roster as the friends become enemies, and enemies friends.
....Irrelevancy? Highly relevant.

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Post by e_dog » October 6th, 2007, 9:16 pm

neo cons?

try, they're the one in charge o this racket of enemies.

Ain't all ta same.

Some Politiks gots ta be done.
I don't think 'Therefore, I am.' Therefore, I am.

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Post by Zlatko Waterman » October 7th, 2007, 2:43 pm

Driving through the Friday at Five O'Clock Apocalypic Traffic in Los Angeles with two friends of mine in a small Japanese car ( two days ago . . .), we got to talking about time. And "times." One of us is 62 ( moi), the driver was 60, and the other passenger was 24, just out of art school and looking for comix work in LA-- the place they call: ONE HUNDRED SUBURBS LOOKING FOR A CITY . . .

Like most friends of mine, these two career artists contend that today is more like BRAVE NEW WORLD ( with everyone drunk on pleasure, fantasy and sex) than Orwell's fierce, Stalinist NINETEEN EIGHTY-FOUR.

I agree.

But in the last chapters of George's ( or Eric's, if you prefer) novel, O'Brien the torturer assures Winston ( the tortured-- named by G.O. for Winston Churchill) that, instead of "thou shalt" or "thou shalt not", the Party has got beyond all that.

Now it's "thou art."

I think the evidence of the electorate, their response to BUSHKO, the "protest" vote that elected the "democratic" Congress in '06, and other signs that struggle is pretty futile under the heel of THE CORPS is collectively pretty discouraging, all right.

Lieutenant Watada hasn't been disappeared yet.

But there were all those single-car accidents that erased the eyewitnesses to JFK's shooters on "the grassy knoll."

That one still gives me the creeps.

Excelsior--

and -- there will ALWAYS be a Petraeus somewhere the flag is waving, me hearties!


--Z

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Post by stilltrucking » October 8th, 2007, 5:00 am

How come nobody talks about Martin Luther King's murder?
That creeps me out more than JFK.
There is no doubt that it was a conspiracy involving more than one cracker head. But who gives a sh*t about a dead n*gger. Just not good box office. Oliver Stone not interested.

Like most friends of mine, these two career artists contend that today is more like BRAVE NEW WORLD ( with everyone drunk on pleasure, fantasy and sex) than Orwell's fierce, Stalinist NINETEEN EIGHTY-FOUR.


I don't know which book comes closer to the present.
Some people say that it is going like the book
Is it 1984, Brave New World, or some other Book?
I think I suffer from
apophany
Or maybe I watch too many wacko preachers on God TV LLC Inc

My head so full of images from the movies and TV
My monkey brain so eager to connect non existent dots


Braudrillard I don't know his work at all, I stumbled on him while googling for definitions of apophany.
L’effacement de Dieu nous a laissés face à la réalité.

Qu’en sera-t-il de l’effacement de la réalité?1

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Post by hester_prynne » October 8th, 2007, 6:02 pm

Maybe the 50's was a dream.....
Whatever it was, I spent my downtime from work this weekend watching "leave it to beaver" reruns on tvland. It was like a tonic, to see the beav, the innocence, empathy, that no longer exists today, that in fact, is now rather laughed at.
We trample everything free and intangible, for the greed of the tangible.
Stupid fucks, all of us.
H 8)
"I am a victim of society, and, an entertainer"........DW

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Post by e_dog » October 16th, 2007, 1:45 pm

Get Smart.

EAT Vegan(s).

IMPEACH Bush.

Send 'im an' Cheney to the Hague.
I don't think 'Therefore, I am.' Therefore, I am.

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