Where have all the hippies gone?

Last night I took my family to go see Across The Universe. After having looked at the trailer I was mildly interested – we really went for my daughter who thought it’d be a cool love story. What I found was a 60’s tail wrapped in 21st century production values, a reverent updating of a wide variety of Beatles music and imagery that was simply breathtaking.

But what I really walked away with was a pit in my stomach, because the film made even more clear and obvious the nature of the young and focused people of that time, compared to the apathetic and selfish young people that populate my America today.

Now to be sure, if you are a Guiliani supporter and believe that we could have “won in Vietnam” if we’d just stayed longer, this film is not for you – but frankly neither is my blog so simply get away from me now – your mere presence is polluting my webspace. But I digress.

So to my question: Where have all the hippies gone? The people of the 60s were willing to put themselves on the line to cure a monstrous ill… which was our involvement in Viet Nam. I was brought back to Kent State, End The War marches, the civil rights movement, the fantastic diversity in music, the acceptance of all things different… and the repressive governmental and old-societal forces that pushed back. The 60s represented a time of enlightenment – the dawning of the age of Aquarius. A time when we threw off the confining borders of the cold-war ethos, a time when we yearned to be more that we were told we could be – a time when the best parts of the utopian notion seemed with grasp.

Of course that very mental and spiritual enlightenment also brought about the drug culture as well as sexual freedom that was so repulsive to a great many in the U. S. – so much so, that we gave rise to the contemporary conservative movement and the birth of the Goldwater conservatives. That movement has been bastardized and mutated into the neocon movement that created the war in Iraq, the notion of Values Voters and a push to constitutionally ban same sex marriage. Which in turn has begat the modern progressive movement.

By why is the moderm progressive movement so seemingly less effective than the hippies of old?

In my opinion, because it’s the same people. And they are tired, older, are less willing to claim that “Possessions are a bummer” and in fact ARE over 30 and therefore untrustable ;) . The younger generation that might be moved by what we as a nation are doing are interested in changing the world only in as much as it affects their ability to play video games and interact in their own way. Has Internet Fund Raising been effective? Yes of course! Has it actually gotten people to talk about issues more? Yes of course! But computers will not line up at the foot of the Washington monument mall and scream for peace and justice. And the problem, is that the very thing that has made us more capable of communicating is in fact makin us more lazy and unwilling to do the REAL work of getting out there and letting our faces be seen. Regardless of how big the number is in an online-poll to change a piece of legislation, this is NO SUBSTITUTE for actually getting out there and being seen.

Don’t get me wrong – by simply reading my piece and forming an opinion of me for-or-against, you are doing something – you are thinking. But that’s still not the same as the commitment and conviction that my parents had when they were pissed off enough to try to move the earth… and stop a horrible international excursion and the deaths of countless Vietnamese people (as well as our own boys and girls) with marches, sit ins, rallys and all manner of peaceful civil disobedience.

Perhaps if we simply could get Dick Vader or his Imperial Lord And Master Dubya Bush to drop a little window pane our world would start to shift again. But again, I digress.

The answer is not just to be pissed off, but to actually do something about it. Be willing to speak out to your neighbor that takes smack about liberals. Be willing to attack, head on, the forces that make hate seem more acceptable than love. Be willing to fight for the notion of live and let live.

You say you want a revolution?
Well you know, we all want to change the world.


All you need is love.

Go see Across The Universe. Watch, listen and apply the imagery that confronts you to the world around you. If you’re not moved and a bit pissed off, then you need to read someone else’s blog.


  1. Nathan says:

    well, to be fair, many of those hippies in the 60′s who cared so much about the world were also motivated by a draft that forced them to be engaged in the world. And to be fair, much of what today’s generation of hippies is doing is much more informed than what happened in the 60′s. You don’t hear about it that much, but there was a lot of rape at Woodstock and homophobia in the civil rights movement, and a whole bunch of problems that are not talked about by those who want to glorify the 60′s. There have been anti-war demonstrations in America today, but anti-war demonstrators have been much more careful to attack the war, but not the troops, than 60′s demonstrations. There continue to be hippie movements in the form of Burning Man festival and other events similar to Woodstock, but given our knowledge of AIDS, feminism, multi-culturalism, and a lot of other information we have today, large cultural events like Burning Man are in fact safer and more respectful of diverse communities than Woodstock and many of the hippie events of the past.

    It’s always easy to look to the past with fond memories, but the past wasn’t as great as it’s often represented, and today isn’t as apathetic and meaningless as many would have it appear.

  2. nop_90 says:

    Basically what you are talking about is a direct result of the 1960s.

    In 1900 the average IQ harvard was approximately the same as the same as the average population.

    Then someone got the idea of equality. That the poor deserve just as good of an education as the rich. In a nutshell in 100 years the average IQ in harvard is of the top 5 percentile. (In stead of like only 2% of population eligible to go to harvard, because of scholarships etc, majority of population can apply)

    The impact of this. Well the poor people who went to harvard (or other fancy schools) now became rich. The moved out of the slums and now only associate with other smart people.

    Before 1960 these smart kids who where poor would become like bus drivers, bakers etc, stay within thier community etc.

    Also they will tend to marry other smart people having smarter kids.

    You are a case in point. Your kids go to a private school which probably has kids who are brighter then the average kids. But probably you yourself went to a public school.

    Also in the old days, engineers etc had to go to the jobsite to actually see what was happening. Today because of communications it is not longer nessary.

    As a result the poor communities are literally having a “brain drain” roflmao:. With the brain drain this is coupled with a lose of values etc.

  3. Nathan says:

    and by the way, I thought Across the Universe was a great film and very inspiring and I totally support the spirit of the film… I just think that when you said “why is the moderm progressive movement so seemingly less effective than the hippies of old?” – that’s a much more complicated question than can be answered than by simply saying ‘people aren’t doing anything these days’. Progressives are doing a lot of things, and in some ways doing them better than they were done in the 60′s, without the motivating factor of a draft. But I like your message to people that they should get out and do more. We all can find ways to engage in the world more than we have before.

  4. vsloathe says:

    I think you should listen to more Punk Rock Perk.

  5. perkiset says:

    @ VS: roflmao:

    @ Nate: 100% correct that an awful lot of the antiwar movement was personally motivated ie., avoiding the draft. I think it’s also very fair to say that the movement is growing here in the US, and it’s probably a more grounded and less self-centered sort of activisim. But there’s also a tremendous amount of cynicism and jaded people now – I think there’s less genuine optimism and love of flowers than there is polarized, pissed off politics. And that might be good – perhaps we’ll get more done – but I do really miss the notion that Love Is All You Need. Even if that was always an unrealistic interpretation of life in general, the fact that it even entered the discussion is different than today. All that being said, I have yet to make an appearance @ Burning Man and as such, do not have the kind of personal experience of Today’s Hippies that you do.

  6. perkiset says:

    @ Nop – funny, you are correct – my kids do go to private school and I was educated in public school. But for an entirely different reason that what you describe – in fact, given my druthers, I’d have my kids go to public school for the very reasons of social interaction and diversity. But since the voters here in Arizona have sliced the funding for our public schools literally to the bone, we vascillate between 49th and 50th in the nation in terms of educational quality. And my kids will get an education, even I have to pay double for it (taxes and tuition).

    Also, I think that your notion of an “equal education” being the reason that the smart people are leaving the neighborhood is flawed – I think a more important reason is that marketing hype that tells us all that what we have is not enough. The notion of “I have enough” and actually being satisfied is long extinct in my country – we are a nation of ravenous, every-unsatisfied consumers. And to sate our shoplust we must find more money – which often means that the previously, perfectly happy gentleman distributing milk could never again be satisfied because his neighbors would consider him a slacker. “Where’s your drive? Your ambition?”

    And this wraps completely back to my original point: many years ago, being enlightened, being a good person and sharing experiences with those you love had more value than it does today – it was “Almost Enough.” The fine art of enjoying life, which the hippies did (arguably WAY too well roflmao: ) has slipped from the general conscience onto the trashbin of unrealistic fantasy.

  7. Nathan says:

    “there’s also a tremendous amount of cynicism and jaded people now – I think there’s less genuine optimism and love of flowers than there is polarized, pissed off politics. And that might be good – perhaps we’ll get more done – but I do really miss the notion that Love Is All You Need.”

    I hear you. I really wish things were as simple as all of us pulling together around a simple idea like loving your fellow man. We all could use more of that optimism. But at the same time, you know, my generation (gen x) grew up thinking that you can’t say “all you need is love” to answer life’s problems because you have AIDS, abortion, stds, rape, child molestation, substance abuse, and all the other issues that make life more complicated and require more than just love can fix. These aren’t new problems in the world (talk to any senior honestly about substance abuse, sexuality or other issues, and these are issues that have been around forever). The difference today is, we talk about these issues and we must come up with solutions that consider all of what we know in the new information age.

    Many have accused my generation of lacking vision and being “slackers”. But in fact, we have had a very pragmatic vision of what is possible to accomplish, and so we have done the work of building a new progressive movement based upon lessons of the past. We (and all generations of progressives who have hindsight to benefit from) have been very active in creating SUSTAINABLE solutions, which are not as flashy and revolutionary as the 60′s activism, but progressive solutions that can be sustained as standard parts of our culture.

    Examples of sustainable new progressivism – rather than costly, unworkable thermal solar power of the 70′s that gave the industry a bad name, the new solar industry realizes that they must become a marketable enterprise to compete and take hold in the economy.

    Another example – Burning Man festival (as opposed to Woodstock) sets up guidelines for participants to protect the environment, respect fellow participants, and create safety for everyone, and became a for-profit enterprise to sustain the event. Woodstock went bankrupt, trashed the local space, had reported rapes and had limited impact as a cultural icon. Burning Man has generated national organizing groups that are building a network of local art and performance throughout the world and is in its third decade generating more revenue and local art than ever before.

    Third example – Move-On.org, Daily Kos and online advocacy. Everyone can see how the internet has become an organizing tool (not just a sounding board for ideas, but an organizing tool) for the left that is now rivaling talk radio in outreach and is becoming a major player in national fundraising. This is direct action at its most efficient state.

    These are examples of how the left has become organized in ways that don’t claim to want to “change the world” but do claim to make major contributions to changing parts of the world that need changing. The new left is still in its infancy, but it’s emerging as a much more organized movement than the 60′s movement which relied on “be ins” and “happenings” that could evaporate when they ceased to be fads.

  8. perkiset says:

    Hey Nate –

    It’s cool how, in our writings, I can see the ever so slight, yet definite shift in social personality between your contemporaries (the front of GenX) and mine (the end of the Boomers).

    @Slackers: This is an unfortunate moniker, and certainly one that could never be painted on you! I think that GenX was really the first group of folks that did not fit The Plan at all, it took longer for these folks to figure out what they wanted to do, because they were less willing to simply follow the established patterns. Certainly, yours is the first generation in recent times that has either had it worse than your parents, or you cannot see that your parents’ path is even available to you. By this I mean that the notion of a 9-5 sales job for Dupont selling Teflon and a gold watch at 55 was neither desirable nor a realistic option for the majority of new college graduates of your time. This sort of “Crushing Emancipation” has lead to quite a wide range of new views, attitudes, challenges and solutions. You note several – from Burning Man to the Daily Kos.

    All that being said, I think it’s also fair to note that Burning Man would most likely not exist if it had not been for both the freeing of minds during the Woodstock era as well as the horribleness that you rightly note. What is wonderful today, is the lovechild of the good and bad of yesterday.

    I hope you are right in that the New Left is in its infancy and will only grow larger and stronger. I am *so very frustrated* with our politicians and country today and do not yet see a grass-roots body that can reasonably go toe-to-toe with the Rupert Murdochs of the world, and this frightens me. It is my hope that the New Left learns to wield power and control in the way that the rightwingnuts have and begin to take our country back.

  9. Nathan says:

    “What is wonderful today, is the lovechild of the good and bad of yesterday.”

    Definitely. The amazing thing of the 60′s (and really the 70′s too) was that people allowed themselves to dream of reality as it had never been before, and they took bold action to create their desired reality. Today we benefit from their trailblazing.

  10. DB says:

    From a first time poster, long time reader, thanks for uploading my post.

    I also loved the movie, but maybe partly because I am a transplanted Brit (but without the Liverpudlian accent).

    There is a constant tug or war back and forth between the relative power of the government v. the people, and clearly the government is currently winning. All the administration’s measures are designed to protect the government from the people, and unfortunately they are winning, largely because technology has made it easy to keep an eye on dissenters.

    Who now doesn’t think twice about attending an anti war protest for fear of being photographed by the police, or appending one’s name to a letter to the editor about the fake war on terrorism for fear of being put on the no-fly list?

    The government keeps 99% of the population apathetic and relatively happy by dumbing them down (another subject that requires its own blog), while providing just enough carrots in terms of basic healthcare, social security benefits, and endless mindless entertainment and Edward Bernaise style propaganda, that life is not THAT bad that we need to protest against the government.

    After all, we are not affected by the Iraq and the coming Iran wars, are we? Without conscription and without additional taxation, why should we worry? And anyway, its good that someone is fighting them over there, so we don’t have to fight them over here, isn’t it?

    Of course those that suffer, namely the soldiers sent on a pointless, and dare I say evil mission, are a tiny minority. The average age of Vietnam era soldiers who were killed was 19. Now the age is 27, so many have young families – young kids deprived of their father – can you image that personal level of suffering? Let alone the suffering of the 100,000+ Iraqis killed.

    So it seems most of us are uninvolved in this war, just spectators. In reality, we are paying for the the war through inflation, the hidden tax. As the government continues to print money, so the dollar declines. It was not long ago when $0.80 bought a Euro, now you need $1.46 for one Euro. So don’t go to Paris if you would object to paying $12 for a cup of coffee on the Champs-Elysees (as I recently did).

    I seem to recall that King George tried to increase taxation in the American colonies to cover costs of the military protection provided by the British armies for the westward expansion. Seems quite reasonable, but propaganda by Ben Franklin and his stooge Thomas Paine won out, and the revolution followed. Perhaps the neocons have found a way to have continuous wars while hiding the cost from the American people. Of course it helps if your sponsors own the major media outlets.

    I have today changed my allegiance from the dems to the republicans (there is no way that I will vote for THAT woman, who thinks she can run bigger and better wars). So now I will be able to vote for Ron Paul in the primaries. I have it on good authority that Ron Paul is the only one of the candidates who has not only read the constitution, but actually believes in it. So I would encourage the millions of readers of this highly rated blog to do the same.

  11. perkiset says:

    Good lord what an excellent first post DB – thank you for caring enough to do it. I hope it won’t be your last gift to this space…

    I am 100% in agreement with everything you say, with the notable exception of the Ron Paul jazz (I, as well, am completely frustrated by the spineless and wobbly Dumbocrats) – the challenge I have is the views of the Libertarians right below the surface of pop-politics. Their notion of an utterly unrestrained capitalist society, combined with a weakened, or even non-existent, federal government is as dangerous as the corporatocracy that we enjoy now. If you took the jealously-guarded Constitutional views of the Libertarians with an appropriate, focused and controlled federal government I think we’d really have something… but I’m not sure that I see Ron Paul as an example of this.

    Neither, however, do I for the Dems, where the popularly defined range of views and blatant pandering by most of the current candidates is frustrating. I’m curious why you don’t reference either Kocinich or Chris Dodd… they are outside the mainstream and more aligned with how I’d take your views… am I mistaken?

  12. Willyp?? says:

    As a member of the “hippie generation,” I find it interesting to read the ruminations of the end of the boomer and the start of the Gen Xers. When you get to my age you begin to get a perspective that was hard to come by when I was younger. I think that the most profound realization that I have is that no generation, in and of itself can make the changes needed to realign the world. It takes many years to deeply and lastingly change a culture.

    My generation was stifled by the weight of a culture that preached freedom, honesty, religiosity, hard work, following the rules, gender status in relationships, and of course, recognizing that gay/black/brown/yellow/red/female was a condition that was either a legitimate brunt of jokes, a reason to become violent (if he/she/it became uppity), or simply to be ignored (after all, they really only want to be like us . . . but can’t). All this was covered over like too much mayonaise, with a deep sense of dishonesty that threatened real violence if you strayed from the defined path. You had better conform or you would really pay.

    My generation broke out of a world that was overwhelmingly cluttered with racism, sexism, homophobia, religious classism, and general ignorance of the realitys of politics, sex, and relationship. We lived in a time that was quite like a blemish that had come to a head and needed to be purged. The reaction was large, flamboyant, angry and out of control. Most importantly, it also carried many of the ills of our fathers with it as it moved forward.

    I agree that much of the sentiment was “love is all you need,” but we must not forget the white male dominant sentiments of the 60s that included “if you can’t be with the one you love, love the one you’re with.” The sixties were a great time for all of us males who wanted to get laid . . . and we did. There were many great changes that took place, but at a cost.

    I say this, not to put the 60s down, but to realize that whenever we get the notion of change in our minds, we must begin to realize that we bring the norms of the culture we grew up in with us. That being the case, we present the canvass for those who follow to study and pick answers to move forward with. My father was a nose to the grindstone type, who died far too young and never really got the picture of how to relate to my mother, the political world, the sexual world, or any of the other movements in the world. He was stuck in a value system that was no longer viable. I, and others in the generation, objected to that and found our ways to react. However, we carried much of what we learned along with us.

    People of color needed freedom, but down deep inside, we thought that what they really wanted was to be white. Women were magnificent, but it was really hard not to sexually objectify them, gays are ok, but make sure you keep your back to the wall and don’t bend over to pick up any dropped change. We had our monsters inside us.

    Our instincts were good. Our methods were often, flawed. But without our stumbling around in the middle of the 20th century, the many wonderful things that our children have accomplished would perhaps, never have happened.

    I am so proud of what my children represent, with both their flaws and magnificent talents. As a man in the twilight of my life, I have more optimism than I did back then. It is tempered with a realization of the challenge of real change, but I know that there is good being promoted and accomplished in the world. Yes, there is apathy, corporatist thinking, brutality and insensitivity. But there was in my time as well. We had wars in which millions of people died, and women, people of color, and gays “knew their places,” and life was not “good.”

    So I say to you boomers, Gen Xers and slackers, onward. You will find the answers that you need to progress. You will have those who will stand out as agents of progress and you will have those who cause you embarrassment. Lord knows I do. And you will have moments when you look at yourselves and wonder if you are forwarding or holding back the agenda. I have had my high points and also the times when I fell in the bait tank at Art’s Landing, or my kids discovered the “brownies” I had in my freezer and got loaded just because they were hungry. . . . ahh me.

    Onward. I love you.

  13. perkiset says:

    Fuckin’ Wow.

    Made my night.

  14. vsloathe says:

    I long for a more egalitarian existence, speaking in purely anthropological terms. Our culture has always been elitist, but in the past the elitism has been held in check by a common goal. Now that postmodernism has taken hold (thank God), elitism needs to go the way of the buffalo if we are to survive as a society.

    I remember when I went to Africa, and how terribly important relationships were there. Nothing is more important than other people in that culture. Now, you and I would sometimes feel very out of place and take many things as odd, or downright bad – punctuality is not something to be recognized, nor is it something people strive for. If you’re having a conversation with someone, you don’t cut it short because you need to be somewhere. Wherever you need to be can wait. Also, people have no problem asking for something if they need it. It seems rude to us, but that’s just the way it is. People help each other if they can, and if you’re perceived to have something that I could use and you don’t need, I’ll ask if I can have it.

    I also look at the rest of Western civilization: most of Europe is far less work-centric than we. The French have a higher productivity rate per capita, yet they work far less. Well, in truth I can see this amongst my coworkers. There are hard workers with whom I work, but they are the exception. Generally 20% of the employees do 80% of the work. I know many of my coworkers don’t spend every hour at work actually working, and I cannot say that I myself am not guilty of it. But I can’t help but wonder how much more we’d get accomplished if only we just had a little more time away? When you think in terms of how valuable a human life is, it’s hard to reconcile spending so many hours of your life doing something that you don’t love. When do we have time to not work, but just be? Granted with my commute, I’m probably a little jaded.

  15. Dink says:

    Tune in. Turn on. Drop out.

    Almost all of us elder hippies are now bald(ing), nearly toothless, partially deaf, almost blind, and fondly remember the words to “Hey Jude”.

    Rock my world with this new generation of smarter than I movers and shakers.

  16. Willyp?? says:

    I think that making comparisons on a simple this generation Vs that generation without considering the mores that the individual generation had, along with the technological and sociological developments imbedded in the development of that generation is fruitless. Of course the present generation of Gen Xers has a different process and process than my generation. However, if you look at the deeper impulses of the generations, you can see that in the hippie generation, the boomers and the Gen Xers there were and are the exploiters and the movers. In my day, the exploiters were those that took advantage of the “love is all you need” concept and used it for personal benefit. In the Boomers and Gen Xers you have similar cases, not the least being our current president and his ilk. The movers were and are those who are attempting to move the culture forward into a more positive and workable mode.

    The greatest difference, in my opinion, is the framework from which each of these groups did and are making their contributions. In my day, admittedly an overly ambitious and realistically challenged group, the major motivation was to break the bonds of the deadly culture that had come before and had run its course. Such a goal demanded dramatic and sweeping actions. However, such actions, to be culturally institutionalized required an organized and systematic followup that really wasn’t in place during the “age of Aquarius.” The great risk was in daring to do different things and to be different in how we saw the world, our forefathers, and what was the greatest area of need that we perceived. I know that I was so full of anger and frustration at the world of the 50s and its smug self satisfaction, hypocracy, self-rightousness and rabid nationalism that all I could do was to react in anger and immediate action against the system.

    The young people I see today have another process and thus another way of making the change. I don’t feel the anger from my children that I saw in my youth. My kids don’t see me as corrupt or hypocritical, but they do realize that much of what I did could only be sustained for a short period. As honorably motivated as it might be, there was not rational underpinning for it to survive. The kids today, and I can realistically call both Boomers and Gen Xers kids, have both a technological and political/sociological awareness that we didn’t. Thus, they can and are making changes that are both positive and negative, but are solid and active, but not as spectacular in their format as in my day.

    One need only look at Carl Rove to see the innovative and active change that he has provided for the country. In my view it has been sick and demented, but no one can discount his skill and innovation. On the other hand, looking to Bill Gates, we see someone who is making real contributions toward the benefit of the larger culture. Beyond that, one can see countless examples of young people who are challenging the current paradigms of energy, economics, politics, sociology, and many other areas by taking an active and strong part in the system, championing it, rather than dropping out.

    I am very impressed with the dynamic level of discourse that takes place in this blog, for example. In my day, we did not have the tools for this kind of ongoing and, imagine, international discussion. We didn’t even have cell phones. Life was much more direct, but much less supported by technologies that would move the agenda forward in an ever deepening manner.

    I’ll end with a short story that I told one of my sons today. In the late 60s, I can’t remember the year right now and am too lazy to look it up, there was an anti-war revolt in San Francisco, starting at the state university and spreading through much of the city. The police were traveling in groups attempting to quell the activities, but had a difficult time making it happen. They couldn’t figure out why the hippies always seemed to know where the police were going and would simply get out of their way, moving on to another place to erupt in anger again.

    The police never noticed that on almost every street corner there was a folk singer or a poet in recitation. They were ignored because they seemed to be of little importance. They never got it that these street artists were giving musical and poetical signals about what the “pigs” were up to, giving the main body of rioters notice. It was ingenius, but very low tech. Today, in only one day, a blogger for Ron Paul organized a $4,000,000 campaign. People are truly tuned in today, even if it is for someone I really disagree with like Paul, at a very sophisticated and effective level. They didn’t just make that happen. they live in a time where they are masters of technological tools that we never had.

  17. Dink says:

    Of course you’re right, Willyp. You and I are of an age gone by. Dinosaurs in a world full of racing young mammals.

    The effects of near instant communications will play out as one of the more important aspects of the upcoming leaders.

    One of our biggest problems (way back then) was realizing that the mores and institutions of our fathers were flawed. I know that it took me many years to understand that times had changed so much.

    Times have changed. We hope for better.

  18. Nathan says:

    well, sometimes I wish I could teleport back to a time when we weren’t all tied to our cell phones, computers and media that in some ways disconnect us from each other. And then sometimes I’m amazed by the power we have to make a difference as individuals today through technology (witness the 2006 election with the Macacca moment where George Allen lost his Virginia Senate seat, and the entire senate to the Democrats, pretty much because of a popular video on U-Tube)

    Tools change the game for sure. But I think we all agree here that there have been honorable and dishonorable people making their mark in all of our generations regardless of the tools their culture had/have available to them.

  19. nop_90 says:

    For the record when my kid becomes of age he will go to private school for same reasons.

    In a round about way you proved my point. You have the intelligence and foresight to see that education is important. Massive budget cutbacks shows that majority of population does not think it is important.

    It is partially society’s value system that causes people to want to advance true. But the milkman example. Lets say hypothetically 100 years ago there was milkman who had potential to become a brilliant mathematician, but he was poor. It would be next to impossible for him to get a higher education. He would have the same ideas as his father who was a milkman :) .

    The potential milkman protege will be able to get a scholarship for university. While in university he will meet other smart people. His entire outlook on things will change. Also mathematics because of encryption etc, is an important field. So he will be able to get a job which occupies his mind etc (at the same time paying much more then milkman, and him doing far less work). After being in university and starting his new job, he will find out that the people he grew up with, no longer have anything in common with him. He has grown while they are still the same.

    The gov’t does not dumb down people, most people dumb themselves down. There is more free information out there then ever before. I can go online, and for free (and legally), download university books, course material etc, all for free. And almost any info i want can be found on the net for free in minutes.

  20. Paula says:

    I am a 58-year old female & consider myself an old “hippie.” I am wondering where are the other “hippies”? I have worked all my life & have become displaced because of the housing situation. I want to live with all of the other “hippies” to finish out the last part of my life. I am a gentle soul, living on my 401K funds at present while I am looking for work (I am starting to think that age discrimination is indeed alive & well in the workplace, even though I have 36 years experience in the legal field.) I have always been a single mother, love children, pets, friends, family & the Beatles. Where are all you hippie friends from teh 60s?????