Missing the 1980s, big time.
Back in the '80s, you may have had to “Drive 55” on the highway — but in other ways, things were pretty damn good. At least, a lot better in a number of ways than they are now. For instance, you could:
* Fill up a V-8 muscle car’s 22-gallon gas tank for about $25.
Imagine that! Unleaded regular for about a buck a gallon. Premium — without ethanol — for a few cents more.
This made it economically conceivable to drive a V-8 muscle car every day — even as a high school kid working part-time at a fast food place. It also helped that V-8 muscle cars were relatively cheap back then. At least, the used ones. The ’80s were close enough in time to the ’70s — and the ’60s — that used V-8 cars from those eras were still abundant on car lots and in the classifieds. A high school friend of mine bought a ’71 Plymouth GTX with the big block 440 (375 hp) in 1986 for $2,700. That’s about $5,700 in today’s Fed Funny Money — about what you would need to spend to buy a so-so used Civic or Corolla. That ’71 GTX my buddy bought for $2,700 back in the day would cost you at least $30,000 today.
Nowadays, there is no way you’re driving a V-8 muscle car as a high school kid — period — unless someone else is paying the gas bill. Most adults working full-time can’t afford to feed (or even buy) a V-8 muscle car.
So, it’s four cylinder Civics with fart can exhaust for the kids — and FWD V-6 Camrys for Mom & Dad.
* Electronic voices may have told you, “the door is ajar” — but no one threatened you to “buckle up for safety.”
The state was not your mommy — or your wife — not yet. It actually left you alone — for the most part — unless you had committed some sort of external violation. Something that at least plausibly (however thinly) could be argued impinged upon the rights of other people.
You could ride in the bed of pick-up trucks — and hang a shotgun rack loaded with actual shotguns (loaded shotguns) on the back window of your pick-up truck and no one batted an eye.
You could “sleep it off” in the back seat — and cops would not only leave you alone, they’d commend you for being responsible.
Today, Big Brother is married to Big Momma — and we have been reduced to a sort of second childhood.
* It was still legal to have an open beer on you — so long as you didn’t have too many beers in you.
Drunk driving was illegal — but you weren’t considered “drunk” simply because you’d had a beer. Either in your belly — or in your hand. These days, you will be crucified without mercy if caught with an open beer in your hand while driving — even if you’ve only had a few sips and even if a single beer cannot possibly render you “drunk” — even by today’s demented standards — under the law.
Zero tolerance — for common sense.
* It was easier to “speed” — because it was easier to get away with “speeding.”
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?