Thursday, January 04, 2007

Anchoress Posts My Favorite Blog Title of 2007

Hey, four days is an eternity in blogland. The headline is: Civic Immaturity is the New Sophistication. This still has me laughing. Maturity, is like, so 1940s. And she references another essay by Dick Meyers with this:

Meyer, watching the funeral of President Gerald R. Ford, have something of an epiphany: politics has changed. It’s not optimistic and hopeful anymore, it’s rather nihilistic (everything is bad) and the campaigns never wane.

Continuing....Either everyone is lying their asses off, or no one is. Or one side is…but which side, friend? The side you want to believe the worst in? That won’t do. That’s not enough to go on. But “us good, them bad” does appear to be the height of political sophistication for most of the country, these days.
True, that. See, I'm using very sophisticated and immature post-modernist inner-city slang. Like me, she blames the Boomers and why not? They deserve it (I say this as a Gen Xer eagerly anticipating meeting or exceeding every Boomer need for the next, oh, million years--the Boomers won't die, after all. They are invincible.):

2) Baby Boomers are perpetual adolescents. Their mindset is still predominant in the public arena, and their mindset is…approximately 14 years old. So is their politics. Boomers are also the first generation raised to believe every damn thing they see on television, and perhaps because television and boomers rather “grew up” together, they are intensely loyal to the thing, which means they are intensely into pop culture, and incredibly easy to sway via media. My grandmother used to say “it’s in the paper!” to express that a thing must be true. To the boomers who are currently holding sway everywhere, if Tim Russert is saying it, if Jon Steward is deadpanning it, if Steven Colbert is satirizing it…it must be true.

Therefore, if all we ever hear on the news is how dreadful everything is (and props to Meyer for remembering what an utter disaster was Carter’s presidency, and I say that having voted for Carter) and if boomers are predisposed to believe the news…well…in the public perception, everything really is going to hell in a handbasket, even if inflation is low, unemployment is incredibly low, the markets are up, minority college enrollments are up, housing starts are up, numbers of the black middle class are increasing, the deficit is going down and oh, yeah, we haven’t been attacked on our soil since 9/11. We’re told it’s all bad. Many believe it.

And when those folks were told - all through the 1990’s, when AlQaeda was attacking our interests every 18 months and the market was running on “irrational exuberance” - that everything was better than it had ever been at any time before in the history of the country, well…they believed that, too.

So, dear Anchoress, am I to take home the message that this cynical state of political affairs will not cease until the Boomers wane from power? Shrinkwrapped (in too many posts to count so I'm linking to all of them about Boomers) has suggested that the world will not be a better place until the last Boomer dies--kinda like the generation that died off wandering for forty years in the wilderness before Israel entered the Promised Land. Now that's a nihilistic notion. Or is it optimistic?

And are the Boomers so nihilistic and narcissistic that they will participate in the destruction of the Western world just so there is nothing literally left after they're gone? (Figuratively there will be nothing left because, well, they are everything and when everything is gone, nothing is left, right?) And does their nihilism and narcissism pervade the group EST so completely that this belief destroys everything: You know, if I can't live forever and save the earth, then no one can.

What will become of us when the Boomers no longer define the argument? At their social, political, career, and general influence apex, Boomers run the shows--MSM, Government, Business, etc. They are crafting policy to meet their needs. They are shaping the nation's narrative to reflect their frightened inward narrative: I'm gonna die! We're gonna die!

From deifying Global Warming as the existential threat, to ignoring real existential threats like chronic disease and terrorists toting nuclear bombs, the Boomers create reality for us all.

As for the cure to this disease? Time. Time, heals all. If the Boomers don't kill us first. I'm just joking. Sheesh! It's not that bad. These are just rantings of an impotent member of the smallest generation.


Anonymous said...

...the Boomers won't die, after all. They are invincible.

And, with the promise of Embryonic Stem Cells, IMMORTAL.

Why do you think there's so much push for ESCs? The promise of Immortality for Baby Boomers. (The Miracle of Viagra has already solved the second part of the equation.) Like Skeksis forming up around The Dark Crystal, chanting "WE WILL LIVE FOREVER! WE WILL RULE FOREVER! WE WILL SCREW FOREVER!"

P.S. Technically, I'm a late-period Boomer. That doesn't mean I have to like it. You think I like getting lumped with the biggest generation of tantrum-throwing, diaper-soiling perpetual adolescents to ever come down the chute?

I remember the tail end of the Nifty Fifties, Doc. That "Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow, Shining at the end of every day" we were promised as a future -- the Moon, the planets, the asteroids, and finally the Stars.

The future we threw away so we could screw in the mud at Woodstock.

Anonymous said...

And are the Boomers so nihilistic and narcissistic that they will participate in the destruction of the Western world just so there is nothing literally left after they're gone?

Strauss & Howe put it this way in 13th Gen:

"Out of all the generations alive at this time, which seems the most likely to blow up the world just to show everyone They Were Right?"

Antoinette said...

I hate to break it to you, but the boomers don't end when they all die off. They had children after all, like my nephew, son of two hippie turned yuppies, who explained to me that Marx was right. I have met some 20 somethings lately who are so narcisstic they leave me stunned. The boomer's kids. Scary!

Dr. Melissa said...


I'm sorry to have to agree with you. After watching "My Sweet 16" on MTV, my thoughts started rumbling like a Granny: These kids these days!

Will the kids buy the 'tude wholesale, or will some rebel? I'm hoping for a lot of societal rebellion, which will turn them into conservative oldsters.