A Dead Santa of a "Simpler Time"

Last week, Glenn Beck cried for a "simpler time" in America. In doing so, he joined a long line of misty-eyed nostalgics who likewise have pined. Considering the federal government didn't make equal rights a formal policy until 1964, I've always been curious as to when exactly this "simpler time" occurred -- and who exactly got to enjoy it. In this regard, I have to give Beck credit: He defined his terms. To the TV star, our nation's "simpler time" occurred somewhere between the 1975 "Times of Your Life" Kodak campaign, and the 1979 Mean Joe Greene Coca-Cola commercial. (Seriously. Watch the clip.)

Now, I must say, I like people, like Beck, who remember the 1970s as a "simpler time." This is because they make me laugh. Of course, they also make me wonder if they actually remember the 1970s. The real 1970s. The decade that, like any decade, was good and bad and weird and great and awful. The decade that killed off Old Saint Nick -- and a shamefully malnourished one at that -- just in time for the holidays, not to mention the pages of Justice League of America No. 110.

Merry Christmas, kids! Now go outside, and play with your lawn darts! And remember, or better yet, forget, in 30 years, this'll all seem "simpler!"

--Joal R.