I really think it depends on the kid and the parent and how they interact.
For instance, in my family, my dad wasn't really around very much when my brother and I were little. He'd leave for work before we woke up in the morning and get home after we went to bed. My mom was a homemaker so she was around ALL the time. When my dad would spank me it always ended up with me being scared of him. I still don't like my dad very much at all, but that has roots in the emotional/physical abuse that went on in my house when i was younger. He still emotionally abuses my mom and tries it with me but I really could care less about him at this point, so that doesn't work on me anymore.
I also think it can backfire. For instance, my brother had some pretty extreme anger issues as a little kid (he still does but he's learned how to keep them in check, mostly, I still worry for the woman he marries though) and with all the spankings my dad would give him, I think that helped my brother decide that physical touch when you're angry is alright. My dad would also hit my brother. The scariest night of my life was the night that my brother realized that he could hit my dad back and hurt him. It was like two bulls fighting, or something. I just remember hiding with my mom in the upstairs of our house, listening to them go at it in the basement. We were terrified to intervene because we were terrified that my dad might come after us. Thankfully, once my dad realized that my brother would hit him back, he stopped hitting my brother and that was basically the day that all physical touches born in anger ended, for everyone.
When my mom would spank me, it was almost more traumatic becuase I was one of those very rule oriented (still am actually) kids that was absolutely crushed when I accidentally did the "wrong thing" and received a spanking. She spanked my brother and I much more often than was necessary because she had some unresolved anger issues that she was taking out on us. She's realized that now and she's much much better.
In my case, I don't think spanking had anything to do with my respect for elders. I actually have a really deep seated anger towards larger, older men that remind me of my father, which is horrible and I'm trying to work through it. I am a very respectful person however, even if you are a larger, older male. haha Older people love me and I love them right back. I'm always the teacher's pet (which gets pretty old, fast) and my parents always get compliments on how kind and considerate my brother and I are. I think that basically stems from how we've had elderly women (and their husbands to a lesser extent), who aren't part of our real families, in our lives from day one. We grew up around adults and we watched our mother cherish the elderly so we do too. I think another big thing that has helped us is church. Not so much the religion aspect (although, that has helped me with other things) but the being around adults every week on a regular basis and interacting with them part.
I'm not sure if i would ever spank my child if I ever have one. I'm sure I will want to but I have a very scary tendency to get blinded by anger and just kinda go crazy when I'm confronted by something smaller than me that is challenging me. It's something I work very hard to keep inside, and I do a good job, but I know it's there and it scares me. So I'm not really sure that it would be a good idea for me to ever lay a hand on a child. However, maybe it's a maturing thing. Maybe by the time I have kids, if I do, I'll have matured past that, but I'm not sure I ever want to tempt the "monster". That's also why I'm not sure I ever want to have kids, but that's a story for a different thread. =P
Wow, this has basically turned into a "Wallaby tells all" sorta post... Meep. Haha
Basically, I can see the good and the bad of spanking. I don't think it's for me, but some people definitely need it and it works for them which is great!
Fabio - 13 year old Arabian/Lipizzan gelding
Rest peacefully, Lacey.