(Inspired by this thread) - What was life like back in the 2000s? What do you remember from it?
A few things of my own:
Starting with Enron - financial collapses of other powerful company after another - nobody was safe
Society’s most admired people were NASCAR / country music enthusiasts whose job was “a faith based initiative” (whatever that is.) You had to at least pretend to like NASCAR and mainstream country music, or else hang your head in shame for being an elitist asshole.
Most people were passionately angry at the French (and vice versa)
SUVs ruled the roads, with Hummers being the king of the SUVs.
In the early 2000’s, the Clinton party was still going on. I believe after the court case, GWB went on vacation for like a year and a half. Then, 9/11 happened and everything changed. The entire country lost their minds until around 2006 or so.
The ascendance of neoconservatism in the Republican Party and centrist neoliberalism in the Democratic Party. Much of the Democratic Party seems to have been almost apologetic at the time and was convinced that they needed to be as pro-free market as possible to win elections. Meanwhile the GOP loved to compare themselves to FDR and Winston Churchill in their War on Terror.
Obsession with social issues especially gay marriage. I distinctly remember the outrage over PBS’s inclusion of a lesbian couple in Postcards From Buster, yet the fact that Frozen included a gay couple was barely noted. People like Pat Robertson tended to appear in the news more often too.
Not where I live. Nobody talked about NASCAR. They built a track down by Colorado Springs but nobody went and they shut it down in 2005. The whole thing with the French and “freedom fries” was a particularly silly and embarrassing little thing only embraced by right-wing republicans.
9/11 and it’s aftermath dominated everything in the 2000’s until the housing bubble burst and the financial markets cratered.
Yeah, I sort of picked the perfect time to move to NYC, sandwiched right between 9/11 and the 2008 financial crisis. So there was a lot of reconciling that with the last few seasons of Sex And The City and the first five seasons of How I Met Your Mother.
Bands like Coldplay, The Killers and The Strokes were big. Then again, so were 90s bands like Red Hot Chili Peppers and post-grunge bands like Nickleback.
We had our last Old White Male President.
Someone else started a thread asking if we were still stuck in the early 90s. I wouldn’t say stuck, but the 2000s felt less like a distinct decade and more like a blend of the 2010s and the 1990s, without anything distinctive of it’s own. Well, besides 9/11. And the 2008 financial crisis. So I guess that’s sort of what defines that decade.
In the early 00’s, being on the internet was like being a kid in a candy store. A free candy store. Everyone I knew was addicted to Napster or something like it. Everyone would brag about how many mp3’s they owned. We all knew it was kinda-sorta wrong, but everyone did it. So that made it okay. Now Pandora and Spotify and Youtube seem to have squelched the hoarding mentality somewhat.
There was also the dot.com bubble. Every day there would be a new business on the web, and there would be all this hype associated with it, and you’d kind of believe it because you’d hear stories about how folks were getting rich with stock options and the like. You’d wonder if maybe you should get in on it too. Even though in the back of your mind, you knew it was all smoke and mirrors.
Katrina happened in 2005. I remember following the saga on the Straight Dope, along with the news. In 2005, there was no Twitter feed to memoralize people’s reactions. I wonder if it would have changed the outcome any.
Turn on the TV. See Bush or Bush spokesman saying “WMDs”, “war on terror” , or variant thereof. News coverage: Bin Laden. Duct tape, duct tape, duct tape. Then Iraq, Iraq, Iraq. Saddam, Saddam, Saddam. Then back to Bin Laden, Bin Laden, Bin Laden.
Yeah I think the obsession with social issues was due largely to the Left abandoning socialism after the shame of the USSR collapsing in the early 90s. Since they basically embraced capitalism, they had to express their commitment to equality in a different way.
Yup. I’d also say that 1990-94 was kind of a mix of the 80s and 1995-2005. You still had mullets aplenty, hair bands and valley girls but you also had your share of skater punks and wiggers coming through.
I graduated from high school in 2007 and I feel like kids and teenagers then had a lot more freedom as well as responsibilities than kids now. Most of my friends were able to balance work, school, internships, etc. and we were rarely supervised by parents or adults outside of school. I feel like the helicopter parent and the phenomena of over scheduling kids so they never had a moment of free time started a bit after that.
I remember George W. and the Iraq war dominating political discussions. I saw the movie W in college and some kid was going on about how disrespectful it was to make satirical movie about the president while he was still in office. I told the kid that maybe he should think about how it got to the point that a president was that hated.
I also remember AIM and MySpace and how those fizzled out within 2-3 years, but Facebook is still going strong. I made my Facebook account when it first became available to non-college students and I still have my account nearly 8 years later.
Law and Order SVU and Criminal Intent were my favorite shows to watch then. There have been major cast changes since then which is a bummer. At least Mariska Hargitay is still on SVU!