Skip to comments.The Faustian Generation (did boomers sell their souls to the devil?)
Posted on 07/26/2006 8:48:06 AM PDT by NYer
My cohort of early baby boomers has been called a lot of names in its nearly six decades of existencewe were the insolent teenagers of the 1950s; the self-centered Yuppies of the 1980s; now we are the aging spendthrifts who will bust the federal budget and bankrupt our children with unreasonable demands for creature comfort in old age.
But maybe it would be more appropriate to think of us as the Faustian generation. We didn't exactly sell our souls to the devilnot collectively, anywaybut as we jog toward senior status, it's hard to escape the sense that we were complicit in our own unique kind of unholy bargain.
Most of us born in the early years after World War II grew up in a world of stability and order: lasting marriages, moms at home, fathers with permanent employment, local merchants who knew us and watched us, neighborhoods where the people next door were ever-present and predictable. The three television networks ran essentially the same programs; the bread and soup and cereal all tasted alike. It was snug; it was also, as we all know, widely perceived as monotonous and a little claustrophobic, as well as unfair to many members of society
"The dull ache will not depart," Faust says in the first part of Goethe's epic, as he laments the cozy tedium of his cloistered life. "I crave excitement, agonizing bliss." That does pretty well as a mantra for the best and brightest of the early baby boomers as they reached mid-adolescence in the early 1960s
(Excerpt) Read more at msnbc.msn.com ...
I do think he might have played a role...:)
You might be interested to note that there are far more of us in the pro-troop pro-country rallies, and far more boomers in the anti-war rallies.
I should also point out that the military is not having any problems with recruitment from my generation and the generation after. Unlike the boomers.
Er, unlike the boomers when they were in that same age range.
Him and Timothy Leary, Marilyn Monroe, John Lennon, Abbie Hoffman, James Dean, George McGovern, ..........et al....
Ah, yes. The sentiment at work here is obviously that the America that used to exist never really existed at all. Is that it?
Quite strange, considering that data concerning family breakup and divorce are widely available. That's some "dream world" we're talking about, huh?
They vote in Florida and in their home state too.
Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. It's all our fault. We've paid taxes all our lives while the federal government raided Social Security to give it to every type of parasite. I drive these people to the SS Admin for their appointments. Mental patients, 30 year olds with bad backs, alcoholics...Yeah, it's all our fault. We don't deserve anything...We are going to bankrupt our kids...Yeah, yeah..
"we were the insolent teenagers of the 1950s;"
Just look at the dates people, boomers 1946 to 1964, the country is run by people in their fifties plus.
At the end of 1959 the oldest boomer was 14, at the end of 1969 the boomers ranged from 23 to 5.
Long after the Vietnam war and the sixties, in 1980 when Reagan was elected, boomers were 16 to 34 years of age.
We are only now in the "Boomer Era"
Boomers, Its 10 O'clock, do you know where YOU are?...........
...except that there are lots of 'non-hippies' who have made greedy and narcissitic choices in their lives and have caused damage to those around them. (The Enron executives were not hippies.) And I know many former and current 'hippies' who are fine, moral people: cattle-ranchers, schoolteachers, good parents.
I know it's a fine tradition on FR to seize on a few visible scapegoats and blame them for all the world's complex problems, but it ain't that simple.
Any generation "plagued" by the enormous affluence enjoyed by those living and thriving in the modern United States would have problems. No past generation even dreamed of affluence of the measure that our young children now enjoy. This sickening angst-ridden pap these days, typified by the expression that we are "addicted to oil", is pure self-loathing - original sin dressed up in media technicolor.
Newsflash: We are all going to die.
And that there were always kids shooting up schools, and kids being taken out of their homes and raped, and kids being taught Gay, Lesbian Tansgender issues, and citizens being shot by drive by 'bangers sitting on their porch, and Parents having the local law and/or schools system do everything to disuade any kind of discipline, and.......
And then came Rock 'n Roll. Plato warned us.
...now legislating smoke free areas and hate crimes.
Uh-huh. They can't seem to let go of that sex without consequences thing though.
Behold -- they have already received their reward!
I was recently reading a book about Jim Morrison and The Doors, and there were some in my generation - most of them now rabid Democrats - who did make very conscious choices in favor of "the dark side." They were explicitly anti-Christian and explicitly pagan in the worst sense of the term: promiscuous, irreverent, cynical, self-centered, and arrogant. Some of us just enjoyed the music of that era because it sounded good, but others took the message quite seriously and literally.
I would not say that it was the "best and brightest" who were the ones that rejected societal norms. The best and brightest stopped to think what the unintended consequences of rejecting societal norms would be--and decided to hold fast to the moral compass their parents had passed on to them.
If you look at the societal problems the "me first" generation has wrought, I think you will see they unleashed tremendous evil in our society.
this is absolutely true....
and while the WW2 generation did so much for our country, most people don't realize that tons of people collecting SS now were too young for WW2, and never made any of those sacrifices....
I guess I wonder about those that took advantage of our post WW2 boom years, took the best jobs, were able to finish college and come out with the war over, worked at all the big companies, got all their pension money even while the companies were bankrupting themselves with pension debt, and yet, still, collect, and collect and collect SS and get mad if you question the fairness of them making out like bandits, while the younger workers have lost pensions, medical retirement, and SS for all practical purposes...
all in one sentence.....whew.....
its really like that group of people hit the jackpot...no ww2, no bankrupt companies, no loss of pension and medical retirement, taking all their SS , and still get all the elderly "discounts" for everything going......
and apparently, a lot of them vote in all these nice things because we can't seem to break the hold of the senior citizen "give me more" attitude....
example...this cockamamie drug benefit...
Yep, that's it exactly. You can cherry pick your bitch du jours all you want and view the past with your rose colored glasses to your heart's content. I was there and yes, Leave it Beaver and all that misty familial normalcy and societal stability was TV man, not real life.
Our lives are infinitely better today than they were in the past, even with all the problems we have to deal with.
Live in the NOW...