I panned the Millennials not that long ago and actually got back a few intelligent responses…I would like to note in my defense that I did say most Millennials were self-centered twits but also noted that not all of them were. Interestingly enough some of the “not-twits” replied to me with what they disliked about Boomers and Gen X’ers (I’m of Gen X.) and requested that I offer some time to the way boomers are screwing the “me” Generation and X’ers. Okay, valid point. So here are some thoughts for you…
I’ll begin with the Boomers.
They Refuse to Retire
Yes, sadly this one is basically true and it is also basically because of something else Boomers helped to do. Destroy the Medical System in the US and the Social Security, Disability and Welfare Systems. It is ironic that their life choices led them to the point where they have fewer safety nets….but it ended up working out that way. So in a country where jobs are beyond scarce or require a college degree to do something as simple as paint a logo…those who have jobs are NEVER ever going to let them go. And that means fewer jobs for the younger generation that is seeking their own version of the American Dream.
Worse yet, research suggests that even financially secure Boomers continue to work rather than retire because of their own psychological make up and the fact that so much more is out-of-pocket these days. With the jobs, they at least have some benefits (lame as they are) rather than face the nothing provided by our government and our society as they grow older and thus sick. Which brings us to…
They Want to Live Forever, and preferably look like Sean Connery or Audry Hepburn while they do…
There is no more death phobic, youth worshiping group of people on Earth than the Boomers, and especially American Boomers. Death is the last and largest of the American taboos, which is truly fucked as we all are going to die. The real trick is to live and die well. But if there is a product out there that promises a few more years of relative youth, Boomers will buy it. That is why there are literally dozens of false-advertising lawsuits each month for some of these products, why there are so many productive scams, and why bottled water, trendy diets, cancer preventing cheeses (??!!!??), and so on still sell. Not to mention all the sexual aids, testosterone boosters, and pills, creams, and surgeries that are supposed to stave off the look of age and thus somehow fool the Reaper into moving along and tagging someone else. Fitness crazes, self-help books, flash cards, and downright messed up ness (catalogs with wheelchairs, rubber sheets, and toilet risers on the same page as vibrators?!? [shudder]), sixty somethings in Spandex and Tecate beer shirts, and millions of dollars a year on body products, make ups, colognes, scents, wrinkle creams, and more, baby boomers NEED your jobs for as long as they can keep them so they can fool themselves that they are immortal.
And when sickness does rear it’s ugly head? Well, then they spend all the money they have, all they can beg, borrow or steal, to get the “best” medical care they can so they can live a few more undignified years and then a few more months hooked up to 10 gazillion machines? Who’s going to pay for that? Ultimately? The next generations.
Which brings us to…
The “Obesity” Epidemic…
So, live well, eat well, and don’t let any one tell you not to have another burger. When it comes to impulsiveness and fads, Boomers are the worst and it is there cube farm, work, be busy and never chill mentality that led to the whole damn convenience food culture. If you worship the all mighty dollar and the American Dream then there is no time for a balanced meal or home cooking. Grab a burger in your car, grab a coffee and some vending machine food at work, grab food on the way home, and then don’t exercise because you are too bushed and because Honey Boo Boo is gonna sing.
Worse yet, there ingrained faith in their science and technologies a la fifties style (No Millennials are not the only tech freaks) has led them away from any ideas of healthy living or self discipline because “Science has an answer for that”. There is always a pill, a device, a medical surgery, a fat person scooter, or a GMO low fat hamburger (See the latest Atlantic) that will allow them to give shutting their pie holes and taking a walk a miss.
And don’t get me wrong – there are legitimate diseases that lead to obesity and which do require medical treatment. Thyroid issues and hormonal imbalances just to name two, but come on people, the fatties with these diseases are actually in the minority!
And worse still, obesity CAUSES all kinds of illnesses that lay even more stress on the available medical resources and available social health care plans. So the more people living the cube rat dream and eating on the fly, the more people teaching their kids that McDonald’s is breakfast, and the more we rely on external aids to get buy, the more trouble we are in…and the Boomers are leading the way on this one.
But they are also rather hypocritical…they want meds, pills, drinks, surgeries and so on, not to mention recreational drugs but…
They support the biggest drug war in history.
So the people that brought you Woodstock, free love, and mary jane, Pink Floyd and the Deadheads – who deserve a paragraph of their own – have decided that all drugs are bad, even prescription drugs, unless you are over the age of forty five.
The War on Drugs, a handy bit of doublespeak there – is one of the primary causes of increased drug sales, drug related violence, drug overdoses, and drug experimentation – not to mention prescription drug theft and bathtub chemistry.
And it was brought to you by the same people who wanted it all legalized and subsidized when they were your age.
Am I pro-drug? For myself, no. For those under the age of intellectual choice, no. But if you are off age and capable of making your own choices what you do is none of my business. Sadly it is big business for others…no, not just the cartels and other “baddies” but also for regulatory agencies, Big Pharma, and the medical system, for those who sell guns and armor to cartels and Police alike, and to all those who make a profit along the way.
Which brings us to alcohol…
Boomers – with their wine at dinner, cocktail hour, social booze mentalities – Raised the Drinking Age to 21
I should note here that I don’t drink, don’t approve of drinking and driving, or pregnant alcohol usage. Of all the drugs out there alcohol is actually the worst in my opinion…but hey, follow the money. Alcohol is bigger business than drugs…since it’s legal it has al kinds of fringe benefits for the alcohol industry in the form of allowances on control, distribution, and advertising.
That said, if you want to drink – and if your idea of fun is getting so shitfaced you can’t remember if you had any fun or what kind of fun you had go for it. If I ruled the country there would be huge plots of land set aside for drinkers, with public transportation and socially provided onsite medical care. (Maybe volunteer only, or industry funded.) That way those who do drink could do so without any chance of really and truly hurting anybody else. And raising the drinking age, oddly enough, made drinking worse. It gained a tang and mystique it would not otherwise have held and people who were too young to make intelligent decisions about alcohol consumption began to ingest it as an image thing.
And since they “can’t get it because it’s illegal” they are not actually taught anything about how to drink, or safe drinking, or even just the basic rules of social drinking. Legal drinkers at least have a back up system in the form of a friend or a wingman who can say “enough is enough” but the underage drinkers don’t have even that. But what really gets me frothing is that the US is one of the only developed countries to have a drinking age over 18, and the only one that does not offer alcohol education or counseling until it is too late. And saying “Don’t drink” is not alcohol education. Having potential drinkers watch ten hours of gory DUI crash footage (some European nations) is.
And this is frankly ridiculous. We trust people to make other life decisions at younger ages. In the US you can also make uneducated decisions to have sex, have kids, join the army, play the lottery, or drive a car long before you can buy a drink.
And that leads to the fringe loonies, like the
Deadheads, Parrot Heads, and the Rolling Stones
There is an old joke about the Dead that goes:
How many Deadheads does it take to change a light bulb?
None. They just wait for it to burn out and then they follow it forever.
The problem here is that the Boomer fringe loonies really go all the way. They don’t just go a little crazy. So be it Jerry Garcia and his tie-dyed initiates with their beer belles, tee-shirts, bandanas and booze, or Jimmy Buffet’s Parrotheads with their Margaritas, bad ballads, and pirate wannabe attitudes, a crazy Boomer is definitely a sight to behold. And then they have the nerve to tell us to be responsible?
They Deregulated the Banks
I can’t really comment on this one at length because I don’t understand finance or numbers (see education) but I do know this much to be true since I checked the original submission.
The Boomers and Reagonomics are directly responsible for the most devastating bank deregulation in recent history, the one that led to the 2008 crash. It was created in the 80’s and 90’s thanks to the government and the Boomer 1%.
This is the same set of deregulations that allow banks to borrow money based on collateral that they don’t actually have and which really exists more or less solely in cyberspace. How much more money? Well they gamble trillions of dollars a day but when it comes to actual backed currency my sources say the whole world’s stock is only in the billions. So ouch.
Just Google derivatives trading…
But our friendly neighborhood Boomers loved this stuff because it allowed them dance around the banking regulations and made them rich . . . but not rich enough to retire at a reasonable age. They seriously want to have it all.
And it did not end with Reagan because…
Boomers fielded what have been called The Worst Congress of All Time
Insurance companies, SuperPACS, big lobbies, Big Pharma, all the various industries, and so on call the shots and no one, not even Congress denies it. A corporate oligarchy largely comprised of Boomers, our Congress is always willing to make a deal and pass the buck. And to make sure that the agencies that used to support them and aid in their regulation now regulate us. Internet invasions, alphabet agencies, weird healthcare laws, restrictive voter laws, civil rights legislation, the armed forces, police, and most forms of regulation and control – of your life, your food/water, your home/family, and even your mind are all under the control of some Death fearing, age defying and slightly crazy Boomer. And they all have agendas…being it gathering intelligence by reading your emails, controling whether or not Green legislation stands a chance, or Monsanto can feed you neurotoxins, or whether or not your toilet paper costs a bit more each day.
And the last thing they want is a tech savvy, brain oriented, self aware culture of individuals to start checking on them. They fear the “good” Millennials and with good reason. So don’t put down your phone but don’t use it just to text your crotch shot selfies either.
So the next logical step? How about “We, the stoopid peeps. Doz” let them
Gut education in America
Our beloved Boomers all grew up during a post war era that was heavily focused on science, education, and technological progress. They damn well knew knowledge was power and they also knew that the less educated were easier to conquer and kill. Hitler and Stalin taught them that. Boomers, in general, all went to well-funded public schools and got grants and favorable loans so they could go to excellent state colleges . . . but once they finished school, and grasped the brass ring, they put a stop to all that.
Today schools budgets are so tight that they can barely afford to keep teachers on staff, and pay them next to nothing even when they earn it, teachers raises are frequently based on performance, standardized tests are dumber, students have access to online resources and other tech tools IN CLASS, and nobody actually needs to learn anything any more because they can just Google it. Well, until a crisis arises and there is no Google, but hey, how likely is that?)
And the core curriculum no longer actually focuses on math, engineering, tech or trades, or even practical skills like basic geography which might let you know why Syria is and why we might not want to attack them. (Hint: Look who their neighbors are.) Nor are practical language and communication skills taught. Liberal Arts and the arts are great (I am a published author, my partner a musician) and a vital part of any thriving culture. Trouble is our country is not thriving, it’s (barely) surviving.
The majority of community college and state schools are closing left and right. Student loans are being offered at predatory rates that are actually higher than the rate the U.S. government offers for loans to private banks. And most colleges are seeking gimmicks and tricks to fill seats with warm bodies in order to justify costs…a practice that includes deceptive loan deals and offering majors that are now so obsolete that one could not get a burger flipper job with a degree in them.
Plus a Boomer’s average tuition was $400-500 with books…an average Millennial books will cost that much and his tuition at a community school might start at $8000.
I actually know teachers who are encouraging kid’s to seek trade jobs, jobs where you actually build or create actual things, or repair or maintain those things, rather than going to college and getting a degree that won’t feed your family and will leave you paying $100 an hour to the guy who got the plumbing degree.
But get an education and quit whining…your’s truly,
But it’s easy for them to talk – they don’t have to walk the walk. Boomers, on the whole, started out with much more than the following generations did.
They came up in a time with very little unemployment and a high minimum wage (When adjusted for inflation the minimum wage in 1964 was $1 higher than today’s!) It was also a time when buying homes was actually affordable and the banking regulations were still in place to protect them from things like the predatory loans we all now face.
But it is they, by the way, who also decided that once you finish school, and somehow get a job (Magic? A degree in plumbing?) that you still were not qualified for real life as they knew it and who
Inherited Daddy’s Middle Class and disemboweled it
Baby boomers will often fondly -at length, ad infinitum, ad nauseum – rhapsodize about their idealic childhoods in their suburban homes where there were two cars in every garage, parents working reasonable hours, actual cooked sit down, nontexting family dinners, and well-funded public schools, and doctors who made house calls and did not charge you a bloody mint.
This is something else they deprived us of…
In the current generation a scooter, a cardboard box end table or goodwill furniture, a computer, and a one room crappy apartment are far more likely, and you had better really enjoy your time there because if you get a job then you are probably looking at a fifty hour (after mandatory underpaid/unpaid overtime) week followed by exhaustion and junk food. And good help you if you get sick, get married, or gods help you, decide to have a kid.
And they are going to
Complain About YOU, even though they are your parents, or grandparents
All the while that they are screwing you. Boomers love to complain about generation X and Millennials . . . the generations they raised! They study us, write books about us, give us drugs to tame our worst characteristics (but only legal ones and only if we pay a lot of money for them), and call us all sorts of names…some of which we actually do deserve but still, they did raise us? More or less? Right…or was that the TV, the football couch, the radio, and the internet???? Even so, one would think that if they were so worried about the next generation, perhaps they should have put more effort into raising them instead of making sure their own butts were covered and that they would die as late as possible (if at all) and with all their stuff and pride intact.
But you could do what they did,
Ever seen pics of Mom and Dad or Grandma and Grandpa in their faded bell bottom jeans, tye dye and headbands? All the hippies at Woodstock? These were the people who rebelled against their parents generation and were going to change the world spreading the gospel of peace, love, and equality . . . now they are into IKEA, REI, soccor, SUVs, and The Sharper Image.
They are the corporate gunslingers, the weekend warriors, and the congressmen that are all just trying to figure out how to keep what they have and do so without having to spend any hard earned money supporting say government programs to aid the poor or treat the drug addicted.
And they are also the lawyers, stock exchange giants, and bankers who dismantled regulation – and the warmongers who are thirsty for blood and oil in the Middle East. The Summer of Love is over and this id the Winter of OUR Discontent.
Along with deregulating the banks, part of the way the Boomers guaranteed the next few generations a Ramen noodle lifestyle was by
Fiddling around with tax laws
When the baby boomers were starting and struggling, the tax rates were working well in their favor. That was well and good, but when they had all the bread, the laws were suddenly a threat to them and it was time to flip the cycle and change the rules…
The top precenters – let’s say 10% – in the 70’s had a 50% tax rate and the working and middle class folks enjoyed a lower tax rate so that they could have their chance two cars, dog, picket fence. Once the baby boomers started making the serious green, they got Reagan to edit the tax code, bringing their tax rate down to 28% and creating all kinds of loopholes to make their effective tax rate 15% or less, and leave the middle class to pay the rest.
They Outsourced All YOUR Jobs -or at least all the ones where you might have made some money.
When the Boomers were growing up and learning the ropes, America was a cornucopia overflowing with what are now called good jobs – jobs including including manufacturing, technologies fields, design, and service jobs that don’t exist anymore. These jobs no longer exist.
That’s because Bangladeshi slave laborers and low paid Hindis can do the job for a lot less money and they still think they are getting a good deal. No benefits, no problem. What are benefits? Only fifty hours a week? Really? How wonderful!
So if you get a job, it will be in a very different field than your Dad (most likely) will pay less, have fewer benefits and have you working on days that used to be free days. And if you had a hot meal after, I’ll bet it was a PopTart and beer.
And then – to ice the cake – they started
Creating a Huge Debt
In the 40-60s there was almost no debt, but between 1975 and 2004 (with a brief surplus under Clinton) it jumped up by about 7 trillion! What did they spend it on? Well themselves. Corporations. Congressmen. Medical care. Private schools for themselves and their children. Security. And Boomer toys. Not to mention all the interesting and pointless little wars we are fighting in places we have zero right to be? Shall we follow up on that last point a touch?
How’s this for weird…
Boomers supported and continue to support idiotic wars after living through Vietnam
The Vietnam Conflict was a turning point in the lives of the Baby Boomers, where they learned just how terrible a pointless war can be. A generation that invented protests, sit ins, civic marches, petitions, and passive resistance – not to mention draft dodging and active resistance now goes up in flames whenever someone is suspected of not supporting our troops and thus by extension the wars those troops are all being killed in…or coming back from so badly damaged that death would have been the kinder alternative. Strange way to support a body of men founded to protect us and our country and our interests, eh? Send them somewhere where they are not wanted, not needed, generally reviled, and face asinine conditions ranging from spiders that have to be machine gunned to desert clime, from pissed off people of a different but equally valid religion to governments that see them as pawns. Not terribly logical, huh?
But these peace freak hippie free love types who sang the F Song with Country Joe and the Fish at Woodstock still opted to go to war in the Middle East in the 90s and 2000’s, sending their kids to fight, kill, and die in places where we are unwanted at best and trespassers at worse. How do you teach people that invasions by armed aggressors are bad when you in turn send armed aggressors? And frequently young, uneducated ones, who have no idea at all about the history, culture or social mores of the place they were sent to “preserve” and protect. Boomers -save career types – are not really involved in this war. But they have no problem in sending all the rest of us.
And then, just to lighten the mood with some trivial complaints, they also completely and utterly
Ruined Facebook for the rest of us…
Uncle Jeb, 64, in a Speedo ballhugger, black knee socks and sandals in Costa Maya. Aunt Joan and her recipe for Rhubarb pie. Grandma calling you during your sole fifteen minute “lunch” break to ask you how you unfriend “That Vulgar so-and-so”. Several dozen doubleplus unfun games that eat all your bandwidth, dog pictures from 1964, creepy comments on our lives and habits…and guilt and disapproval that can no longer just be routed to voice mail. Self-censorship or flaming. Attempts to speak Millennial slang. Pictures of the growth on your left butt cheek in full color or a description of cousin Louise who you knew in third grades colonoscopy. Next time your system crashes and you tell me you missed a post from Shirley – you know that girl you almost dated but vomited on instead back in 1950-whatever I am going to talk you through a hard drive wipe.
And that deals with the Boomers.
Next Me, Myself and my fellow Generation X types.