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A little Rant about the "Most Selfish Generation" (Vanity)
FreeRepublic ^ | 09/02/2003 | ME

Posted on 09/02/2003 6:17:04 AM PDT by tcostell

They had their childhood in the 50's and remembered it as a time of unambiguous innocence.

They had their adolescence in the 60's when they decided that their parents view of hard work and respect for family were "antiquated" ideas that no longer should apply in this age of social awareness. They preached free love while they spouted hate and burned the symbol of their country and called those who were risking their lives for them "baby killers". "Private property" became dirty words to them. Crime soared, many fathers were replaced by the government.

In the 70's they left college and got jobs, but the adolescence continued. They now had more money to buy stronger drugs, and indulge in more exotic means of gratification. Those that did marry gave up on the idea, and divorce rates climbed. They called it a journey to "find themselves" but they were already utterly devoted to their own egos. They even went so far as to name themselves the "me" generation. They replaced the minister with the psychologist, and the community with cultural awareness groups.

In the 80's the myth of socialism finally died, and with it also, their already threadbare pretense of caring about anyone but themselves. The ideas of family and community had been trampled under the feet of the proletariat. In the 80's it became about obtaining wealth, and the rules be damned. Excess was still the preferred flavor, but with age beginning to take it's toll it became external excesses rather than the sex and drugs of the last 2 decades. Conspicuous consumption was the new trend and exercise became the fashion in an attempt to hold back the tide of time.

In the 90's they elected their king, and filled the corridors of power with their number, but it turned out that the emperor's new robe was a stained blue dress. They told each other lies about the "new business cycle" and picked each others pockets. They put off till tomorrow everything they could so they could have one last moment of ego gratification. The band played as the new millennium rolled in. But then there came a day when everyone knew that the party was over. The markets stopped pretending everything would go on forever, and the World Trade Center came crashing down.

I'm a part of the generation that has followed along behind the baby boomers paying the bill. No one asked me if I wanted to, (in fact they still never ask me) they simply present the bill and await payment. I was bussed to public school as a child, turned down from ivy league colleges while my friends with worse performance were accepted in deference to affirmative action. I was taught to fear aids and other diseases when I was laid off in the 80's, and watched my savings and stock options turn to so much wallpaper in the 90's. Worst of all, I lost lifelong friends in the World Trade Center, and my wife still has nightmares about how close I came to being there myself. I've grown accustomed to the idea that although I've paid vast sums into social security, it won't be there for me. It was never "for me" anyway. And now that age is upon them they would like me to pay for their medical care as well. Even if it costs me everything I have. Even if it's long gone but still being paid for by my 3 year old daughter.

I know it will probably happen. The baby boomers are arguable the most short sighted and self interested generation that America has ever seen but they are in the majority so there is no-one to stop them. I'm even certain they will come up with some grand rationalization about why I should be thrilled to pay the bill for them one more time. But it won't really be for me... it never is.

In the meantime I'll care for my family with whatever is left. The schools have failed so my wife and I will teach our daughter ourselves in our own home if we have to. We'll make room for both my parents and my in-laws when they can't afford the property taxes needed to live alone anymore. We'll make our family the center of our universe because the family works better than all the government run pipe dreams that the die hards keep trying to sell. They can take everything I have but my self reliance.

We were landless peasants once, and may well be again before the "most spoiled generation" is through, but we'll survive it. And when they finally leave, we'll build the country again. Not as a collective "workers utopia", but as a place where no man is saddled with the burden of another, that he does not willingly take upon himself. Family is the best reason to shoulder a burden. Even community can be a good reason sometimes ...if the links are close enough. But it should be asked for not ordered. And the government can only order.

I don't ever need to be on the receiving end of government largess. I would just like to see the generation that precedes me to pay their own way for once. I'll carry my own water... and I think they should do the same.


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I little rant I wrote on the train this morning. I just thought some of you might be interested in how the last few years looks to someone in my age group. I know the generalizations contained in it don't apply to everyone in that group so I apologize to those Freepers who feel slighted. I'm pretty sure you can tell that I don't necessarily mean you.
1 posted on 09/02/2003 6:17:04 AM PDT by tcostell
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To: tcostell
As one who "had [his] childhood in the 50's and remember[s] it as a time of unambiguous innocence", I would like to make this comment on your massive unqualifed generalization.

Bite me.

2 posted on 09/02/2003 6:25:18 AM PDT by snopercod (The tradition of all the dead generations weighs like a nightmare on the brain of the living.)
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To: tcostell
I hear you brother. Thank God we will be better parents. Hopefully our chilren will be even better,we really have to teach them and hope they learn from our experience.
3 posted on 09/02/2003 6:25:28 AM PDT by mgist
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To: tcostell
Great rant. I'm sure that many of us from the Gen X group feel the same way. I'm always a little surprised how many of us are going back to our great-frandparents' values and I'll never stop grieving for those of us who follow in our parents' footsteps.
4 posted on 09/02/2003 6:26:32 AM PDT by Marie (Klingon at heart...)
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To: tcostell
Great post....and right on the $$$$$$$$$$!
5 posted on 09/02/2003 6:27:02 AM PDT by mrtysmm
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To: tcostell
Myth.
6 posted on 09/02/2003 6:28:19 AM PDT by Huck
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To: tcostell
Nice rant...all those who don't like it can "bite me". Denial is much more than just a river in Egypt.
7 posted on 09/02/2003 6:30:40 AM PDT by BureaucratusMaximus (if we're not going to act like a constitutional republic...lets be the best empire we can be...)
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To: tcostell
As a baby-boomer myself, I can only say that you have written well and cogently. The pendulum will swing back toward the sort of self-reliance you value (or, if it does not, things will get much worse).
8 posted on 09/02/2003 6:30:52 AM PDT by Stirner
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To: Marie
You got that right!
9 posted on 09/02/2003 6:31:16 AM PDT by NeoCaveman (Life is like a jar of jalapenos, what you do today can burn your @$$ tomorrow.)
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To: tcostell
bttp
10 posted on 09/02/2003 6:33:18 AM PDT by Richard Kimball
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To: tcostell
I don't know quite what to think about this. I put myself through college, got a decent job, supported myself, paid my taxes, voted in every election, paid my dues, supported every worthwhile charity to the best of my ability, am active in the community, took care of my parents as needed, married a fine man, am helping to raise my grand children..............selfish? I don't think so.

I can't stop what the federal government is doing as much as I would like to. It's not my fault. Bite me!

11 posted on 09/02/2003 6:36:15 AM PDT by Sunshine Sister
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To: tcostell
Good rant. You put to words many of my same thoughts. This is basically the generation that f'ed up everything. They gave us drugs, aids, unimaginable debt, abortion on demand, high crime & divorce rates, and are in the process of attempting to not only kick God out of all institutions, but make Him completely illegal.

And they're paying for it with our money and our childrens' money.

12 posted on 09/02/2003 6:37:52 AM PDT by VoiceOfBruck (shut up and peel me a grape)
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To: tcostell
Bump
13 posted on 09/02/2003 6:38:01 AM PDT by BureaucratusMaximus (if we're not going to act like a constitutional republic...lets be the best empire we can be...)
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To: tcostell
Well summarized, unfortunately the damage done may be irreversible. I share your view to the letter as do most others I've spoke to. Gen X is starting to wake up to the reality that their parents were the ones enjoying the party not the other way around.
14 posted on 09/02/2003 6:38:39 AM PDT by RockyMtnMan
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To: VoiceOfBruck
They gave us drugs, aids, unimaginable debt, abortion on demand, high crime & divorce rates, and are in the process of attempting to not only kick God out of all institutions, but make Him completely illegal.

Don't forget uncontrolled socialism, peaceniks, and environiks...remember, its all for the children.

15 posted on 09/02/2003 6:39:53 AM PDT by BureaucratusMaximus (if we're not going to act like a constitutional republic...lets be the best empire we can be...)
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To: snopercod
I'm Sorry you were offended. I certainly meant no personal slight, I was just expressing my general frustration at the overall trends.

Personally I think FR probably has a higher precentage than average of people who do not fall into this category in spite of being in that age group. But that aside, I think you probably have to admit that among the inteligencia of your generation all these things have been or are currently true.

But I do apologize all the same.

16 posted on 09/02/2003 6:40:35 AM PDT by tcostell
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To: tcostell
I am of that generation, but believe you me there are some of us that belong in your generation, because we have done everything you are trying to do. Some of us never participated in the spoiled, drugged, and sexed generation you describe. I am afraid there are plenty of those sick individuals in every generation. The whole purpose of life is to love and worship God. We will have victory.
17 posted on 09/02/2003 6:40:59 AM PDT by HoundsTooth_BP
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To: VoiceOfBruck
And they're paying for it with our money and our childrens' money.

And lets not even get started with social security/Medicare/Medicaid.

18 posted on 09/02/2003 6:41:29 AM PDT by BureaucratusMaximus (if we're not going to act like a constitutional republic...lets be the best empire we can be...)
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To: tcostell
Preach on, Gen X brother. If you don't mind, I'm gonna save this rant and pass it around to others; its EXACTLY how I feel about that "selfish generation". I know there are lots of baby boomer FReepers, and they aren't part of the problem. But the rest of their generation is. And we'll all pay the price soon enough.
19 posted on 09/02/2003 6:41:53 AM PDT by egarvue (Martin Sheen is not my president...)
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To: tcostell
. I'll carry my own water-?????????????....I guess you will have to when the BOOMERS aren't around for you to blame all your ills .

Don't be surprized though, when at sometime later you read a similar rant blaming YOU for all your children's ills!!!!!!!

....That's LIFE -damned if you do, damned if you don't.

20 posted on 09/02/2003 6:42:05 AM PDT by GrandMoM ("What is impossible with men is possible with GOD -Luke 18:27)
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To: tcostell
So what you're saying is that you want it to be all about you. You've learned your lesson well!
21 posted on 09/02/2003 6:42:34 AM PDT by joey'smom
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To: Sunshine Sister
I can't stop what the federal government is doing as much as I would like to. It's not my fault. Bite me!

I apologize if you feel personally slighted. As a member of FR, I'm sure the generalizations I put forth don't actually apply to you.

22 posted on 09/02/2003 6:43:19 AM PDT by tcostell
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To: BureaucratusMaximus
I think that would be the FDR "New Dealers" who are sucking us dry. The Baby Boomers haven't started (yet), but they'll have their parents "gimme, gimme, gimme" AARP attitude to guide them.
23 posted on 09/02/2003 6:43:58 AM PDT by Wolfie
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To: joey'smom
Actually he's just expressing a view shared by a vast majority of his generation, right or wrong that's how boomers are perceived by Gen X.
24 posted on 09/02/2003 6:47:08 AM PDT by RockyMtnMan
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To: GrandMoM
I guess you will have to when the BOOMERS aren't around for you to blame all your ills.

The tax relief from SS and Medicare will be a great help. Stay healthy.

....That's LIFE -damned if you do, damned if you don't.

Yep.

25 posted on 09/02/2003 6:48:50 AM PDT by BureaucratusMaximus (if we're not going to act like a constitutional republic...lets be the best empire we can be...)
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To: GrandMoM
I agree with much of the RANT. I am about to turn thirty, work my f'ing ass off to make a living, and see that these Baby Boomers keep passing these "open skies" laws and "school budgets" that keep the cost of buying a home up and up and up. By in large, they are selfish. I'm sorry if some of you don't like it. Nimbyism is rampant among this bunch. Logic and rationality is often absent to the same degree.
26 posted on 09/02/2003 6:49:08 AM PDT by chris1
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To: tcostell
I'd like to see some stats regarding percentages of Gen-Xers who have yet to be weaned from their Boomer parents' nest.

Just a guess on my part, but I seem to see a helluva a lot more 20/30-somethings still suckling at the teat than I remember of the previous generation.

27 posted on 09/02/2003 6:50:53 AM PDT by ErnBatavia (40 miles inland, California becomes Flyover Country!)
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To: HoundsTooth_BP
I appreciate your sentiment. In fact many of my generation have done everything they can to join the party and skip out on the bill. It's not exclusively a generational issue, but I think the generational aspect of it is somewhat exaggerated at the moment because of demographics. It's what I thought on the train this morning anyway.

Thanks for your comments.

And again to those of you who belong to that age group but are more a part of the solution than the problem, I apologize. I know these are generalizations and therefore don't apply very well to specific people. I hope you'll have some patience with me and take this perspective for what it's worth.

Thanks.

28 posted on 09/02/2003 6:51:10 AM PDT by tcostell
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To: GrandMoM
Step off, granny!
What the author wrote is TOO TRUE. What GOOD have the boomers actually brought to the fore? Their parenting skills leave much to be desired, that's for sure. Drugs, "Great Society," affirmative action... GAG.

Many of them are all about immediate gratification. It's all about what feels good to them, and screw the rest of us. Sorry, but as a Gen-Xer, I am NOT looking forward to the aftermath that we will be left with.
29 posted on 09/02/2003 6:52:40 AM PDT by conservativeinbflo.
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To: Wolfie
I think that would be the FDR "New Dealers" who are sucking us dry. The Baby Boomers haven't started (yet), but they'll have their parents "gimme, gimme, gimme" AARP attitude to guide them.

FDR "New Dealers", the LBJ "Great Society", "HillaryCare"; its all the same.

30 posted on 09/02/2003 6:53:03 AM PDT by BureaucratusMaximus (if we're not going to act like a constitutional republic...lets be the best empire we can be...)
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To: ErnBatavia
Boomers are, by and large, not the parents of Gen-X'ers. I'd say most of our parents were born prior to 1945.
31 posted on 09/02/2003 6:54:03 AM PDT by conservativeinbflo.
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To: tcostell
A great post! Will respond in depth a little later.
32 posted on 09/02/2003 6:56:13 AM PDT by ikka
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To: tcostell
Very interesting. I'm a Gen X-er and at times share your feelings of frustration. However- we must not let the mistakes of the past hold us prisoner, but rather focus on what we can do to create a better futurte. Like Howard Jones says, "things can only get better"
33 posted on 09/02/2003 6:56:33 AM PDT by Ferret Fawcet (Trust God's authority, not man's majority.)
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To: Ferret Fawcet
However- we must not let the mistakes of the past hold us prisoner, but rather focus on what we can do to create a better futurte. Like Howard Jones says, "things can only get better"

Hear Hear...I believe most of us believe that word for word my friend.

34 posted on 09/02/2003 6:58:48 AM PDT by BureaucratusMaximus (if we're not going to act like a constitutional republic...lets be the best empire we can be...)
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To: tcostell
The later boomers thought this way about the WWII generation in the late 70's and early 80's until Reagan straightened out the economy so a house could be afforded with the interest rates reduced. We saw our parents buy houses for peanuts and then inflation essentially made them free for the mortgage holder. We saw our parents retire on really decent company pensions while our pensions were being liquidated and converted to retirement accounts (stock market bubble and burst) because of federal laws and mergers. We saw the cost of payroll taxes often exceed income taxes to pay for the social security checks that many seniors use for international travel and dining out, exclusively.

It is not the previous generation, it is insane government (and Federal Reserve Bank) policy that will lead us down the path to ruin.
35 posted on 09/02/2003 6:59:58 AM PDT by Final Authority
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To: tcostell
Anyone consider how my grandma must have felt? She of the white linen summer dresses that came to her well covered ankles? Her daughter, with her hair cut short, sox rolled to the knees, skirts well above same, out drinking and smoking and all of *that*. How about the following generation that had to clean up after that party, with the depression? How about the generation that followed *that* one, with WW2? C'mon folks, we've all had it tough, some more than others but we all manage to survive it, generation after generation.
36 posted on 09/02/2003 7:02:01 AM PDT by toomuchcoffee
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To: conservativeinbflo.
Boomers are, by and large, not the parents of Gen-X'ers.

Well, this boomer is 56 (born in 1947) and my son is about to turn 35....I thought he was a "Gen-Xer"; could be wrong, tho...

37 posted on 09/02/2003 7:04:08 AM PDT by ErnBatavia (40 miles inland, California becomes Flyover Country!)
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To: Ferret Fawcet
Well said. Thanks.
38 posted on 09/02/2003 7:08:57 AM PDT by tcostell
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To: tcostell
Socialistic insecurity is a pyramid scheme and like all pyramid schemes, they require an ever increasing number of participants until they exhaust the pool. Hell, let them bring on free drugs for the Most Selfish Generation. It will be that much quicker when the whole Ponzi scheme fails and I will be free at last.
39 posted on 09/02/2003 7:11:53 AM PDT by Blood of Tyrants (Even if the government took all your earnings, you wouldn’t be, in its eyes, a slave.)
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To: ErnBatavia
Oh-- Well your word MUST be gospel. I mean-- you must represent the entire generation. Thank you for clearing that up for me.
40 posted on 09/02/2003 7:12:48 AM PDT by conservativeinbflo.
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To: tcostell
They had their adolescence in the 60's when they decided that their parents view of hard work and respect for family were "antiquated" ideas that no longer should apply in this age of social awareness. They preached free love while they spouted hate and burned the symbol of their country and called those who were risking their lives for them "baby killers". "Private property" became dirty words to them. Crime soared, many fathers were replaced by the government.

This applies to vast swatches of the people I grew up with in California during that era, but you didn't touch on the real problem with the Boomers. Yes, we invented sex, but I consider that one of our good points. Yes, most of us started off as socialists and dopers, but that sort of thing dies off rapidly with exposure to reality. How swift was our passage from Che Guevara to 401(K)'s!

No, the real problem with my generation, and the one you young people will be paying for the rest of your lives, is that we were a pack of Luddites. We gleefully abandoned our parents' religions, only to take up worship of rocks and trees. After we stopped new electrical generation in the Seventies, America's whole industrial base moved away to Asian countries that built nuclear plants on every streetcorner. Now, thanks to my generation's legacy of fearful ignorance, we're about to lose our early lead in biotechnology in the same way.

So kids, think of us while you're out of work.

41 posted on 09/02/2003 7:17:37 AM PDT by BlazingArizona
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To: chris1
ahhh, the idealism of youth.

you work your effen a$$ off, acquire a few things, get a nice place to raise your kids...

you'll be a nimby soon yourself...or are you suggesting that you'll not do whatever you can to protect the value of your investments.

you've already got the "i'm a victim" thing down pat. you're well on your way.

it's been very informative watching the x'ers grow up (in the stilted fashion that they have)

my experience with your generation (i was born in 1958, so technically I'm a boomer) is that you've not yet realized that just because you have an opinion, it's not reason in and of itself to voice it.

My parents, in response to my endless rants about how stupid their generation was, was simple. Fix it from the inside (read: shut up and learn something first, maybe as you get older you'll have an opinion worth airing out).

It's kind of funny to hear the nintendo generation accuse others of self-absorbtion.

42 posted on 09/02/2003 7:22:03 AM PDT by dmz (any resemblance to people living or dead is entirely intentional)
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To: snopercod
"Bite me."

You can't trust anyone over 50!! (sarcasm)

43 posted on 09/02/2003 7:25:55 AM PDT by Sam's Army
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To: Sam's Army
You can't trust anyone over 50!! (sarcasm)

Dr. Kevorchian will take care of that. /heavy sarcasm

44 posted on 09/02/2003 7:30:20 AM PDT by BureaucratusMaximus (if we're not going to act like a constitutional republic...lets be the best empire we can be...)
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To: tcostell
1. There are good and bad people in every generation.

2. Every generation feels smug and superior to the generation before it, and every generation blames the older generation for its problems.

3. Someday the generation after you (Generation Y?) will complain and blame all of its problems on you.

45 posted on 09/02/2003 7:38:01 AM PDT by Nea Wood
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To: BureaucratusMaximus
If he is still around. Or will they deep freeze him and revive/clone him later? Ugh!
46 posted on 09/02/2003 7:38:10 AM PDT by lizbet (9/11/01 I will never forget or play it down!)
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To: toomuchcoffee; Final Authority
C'mon folks, we've all had it tough, some more than others but we all manage to survive it, generation after generation.

Good perspective. While I find it hard to blame the poster because I share some anger toward the Boomers, I'm also angry at the voters of my parents' generation who fell for the New Deal. I'm sure my kids blame me for the inescapable stuff that came down on my "watch." But most people in any generation have absolutely no influence on whatever happens. Hey, I voted for Goldwater! The economic trends described by Final Authority and the philosophical fall-out from the Enlightenment have led to the present state of the world. Mega-trends overwhelm nearly everything in their paths.

47 posted on 09/02/2003 7:40:53 AM PDT by Bernard Marx
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To: tcostell
There may be a flaw in your premise, tcostell. How many Baby Boomers have responded with information opposite to what you propose is the problem? You are thus required to issue an apology and state I know these are generalizations, which is exactly what they are.

I'm not going to go so far as to say "Bite me," but I'm of the Baby Boomer generation and don't fit your description at all. Maybe it's because my parents were older when I was born (I'm the 7th of 9 children). They lived through The Great Depression and taught us to conserve and work hard. I've paid my Social Security taxes since I was 16 years old and able to get a Worker's Permit. How is that hurting your generation?

I don't think you will find your Most Selfish Generation among FReepers since it is (primarily) a forum for Conservatives. Perhaps it's not the generational factor that is the common denominator for selfishness; it could just be the old liberal thought pattern that is the root of the problem. You wouldn't be complaining about Baby Boomers sucking up your hard-earned money if Social Security hadn't been created by liberal (socialistic) thought in the first place.

Know what I'm sayin'? :o)

48 posted on 09/02/2003 7:41:36 AM PDT by arasina (Tag line dedicated to my friend Don DiFranco, 9/11/01 WTC Tower 1)
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To: tcostell
It is fair to assume that most of your baby-boomer exposure comes from time spent with your parents.

What was their reaction to your criticism of them, their values, their parenting, and the desperate childhood that only your own superior efforts allowed you to rise above?

Also, who should have asked you if you wanted to be an "X", and what should they have done about it?

49 posted on 09/02/2003 7:42:38 AM PDT by laotzu
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To: joey'smom; tcostell
"So what you're saying is that you want it to be all about you. You've learned your lesson well!"

Beautifully summarized.

50 posted on 09/02/2003 7:45:01 AM PDT by laotzu
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