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Are Millennials the Screwed Generation? (Boomers never had it so good)
Daily Beast ^ | 07/16/2012 | Joel Kotkin

Posted on 07/16/2012 6:41:23 AM PDT by SeekAndFind

Today’s youth, both here and abroad, have been screwed by their parents’ fiscal profligacy and economic mismanagement. Neil Howe, a leading generational theorist, cites the “greed, shortsightedness, and blind partisanship” of the boomers, of whom he is one, for having “brought the global economy to its knees.”

How has this generation been screwed? Let’s count the ways, starting with the economy. No generation has suffered more from the Great Recession than the young. Median net worth of people under 35, according to the U.S. Census, fell 37 percent between 2005 and 2010; those over 65 took only a 13 percent hit.

The wealth gap today between younger and older Americans now stands as the widest on record. The median net worth of households headed by someone 65 or older is $170,494, 42 percent higher than in 1984, while the median net worth for younger-age households is $3,662, down 68 percent from a quarter century ago, according to an analysis by the Pew Research Center.

The older generation, notes Pew, were “the beneficiaries of good timing” in everything from a strong economy to a long rise in housing prices. In contrast, quick prospects for improvement are dismal for the younger generation.

One key reason: their indebted parents are not leaving their jobs, forcing younger people to put careers on hold. Since 2008 the percentage of the workforce under 25 has dropped 13.2 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, while that of people over 55 has risen by 7.6 percent.

“Employers are often replacing entry-level positions meant for graduates with people who have more experience because the pool of applicants is so much larger. Basically when unemployment goes up, it disenfranchises the younger generation because they are the least qualified,” observes Kyle Storms, a recent graduate from Chapman University in California.

Overall the young suffer stubbornly high unemployment rates—and an even higher incidence of underemployment. The unemployment rate for people between 18 and 29 is 12 percent in the U.S., nearly 50 percent above the national average. That’s a far cry from the fearsome 50 percent rate seen in Spain or Greece, or the 35 percent in Italy and 22 percent in France and the U.K., but well above the 8 percent rate in Germany.

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TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: babyboomers; bhoeconomy; generationy; millenials; youthvote

1 posted on 07/16/2012 6:41:36 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind
Today’s youth, both here and abroad, have been screwed by their parents’ fiscal profligacy and economic mismanagement.

"The youth" are far worse fiscally than the parents.
2 posted on 07/16/2012 6:44:44 AM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: SeekAndFind

Boomers are so...so evil.


3 posted on 07/16/2012 7:00:13 AM PDT by moovova (Ladies & Gentlemen...Pandora has left the box.)
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To: SeekAndFind

“Today’s youth, both here and abroad, have been screwed by their parents’ fiscal profligacy and economic mismanagement”

Such as seeking out and paying for the finest family neighborhoods, schools, colleges and “enrichment activities” over at least 18 years for their selfish entitled brats

It’s not Dad’s fault if an Ivy League degree in Diversity Studies with a minor in Pottery doesn’t get 29 yr old perpetual student Jr into middle management track, and Jr now has to stay at grubby youth hostels when he skis in Chile and surfs in Bali


4 posted on 07/16/2012 7:01:23 AM PDT by silverleaf (Every human spent about half an hour as a single cell)
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To: SeekAndFind

“Today’s youth, both here and abroad, have been screwed by their parents’ fiscal profligacy and economic mismanagement”

Such as seeking out and paying for the finest family neighborhoods, schools, colleges and “enrichment activities” over at least 18 years for their selfish entitled brats

It’s not Dad’s fault if an Ivy League degree in Diversity Studies with a minor in Pottery doesn’t get 29 yr old perpetual student Jr into middle management track, and Jr now has to stay at grubby youth hostels when he skis in Chile and surfs in Bali

and Dad may have voted for LBJ, but JR voted for Obama
Keep the change


5 posted on 07/16/2012 7:02:24 AM PDT by silverleaf (Every human spent about half an hour as a single cell)
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To: moovova

I might also mention...

While our two kids work hard at whatever they do, are thrifty, stay out of trouble, with NO undergrad debt (oldest does have some law school debt but being paid down rapidly)...their parents (us boomers) may be the only opportunity they have to get ahead. When wifey and I pass, and should the gubment leave us anything, our children will inherit a respectable nest egg. Not bragging, but we aren’t the stupid, evil boomers the author makes us out to be.

Some of us were paying attention.


6 posted on 07/16/2012 7:14:58 AM PDT by moovova (Ladies & Gentlemen...Pandora has left the box.)
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To: SeekAndFind
"Median net worth of people under 35, according to the U.S. Census, fell 37 percent between 2005 and 2010."

I suspect that Moore's Law may play at least a small role in this. The youth tend to invest a much higher percentage of their disposable income in IT hardware and software that rapidly obsolesces and loses its value.

7 posted on 07/16/2012 7:25:29 AM PDT by Joe 6-pack (Que me amat, amet et canem meum)
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To: Joe 6-pack
The youth tend to invest a much higher percentage of their disposable income in IT hardware and software that rapidly obsolesces and loses its value.

Ain't it the truth. Zero restraint buying.

I'm glad I picked up my great grandmother's attitude of frugality. When asked if she wanted a microwave oven for her 90th birthday she said "Why? If you're that hungry, you have bigger problems than how fast you can cook it".
8 posted on 07/16/2012 7:39:50 AM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: cripplecreek; SeekAndFind
"The youth" are far worse fiscally than the parents.

And it is unlikely to get much better any time soon.

Even if Romney wins it isn’t like he is a big free market advocate.

Romney as Governor of Taxichusetts was pro carbon tax and pro government control of healthcare.

If Romney wins there may be a little light at the end of the tunnel because he has had to move to the right to run for President on the Republican ticket but it is a crap shoot if he will stay there.

The only way the economy is going to improve is if taxes are lowered and federal regulations are relaxed. If Obama wins there is no chance of those things happening. If Romney wins there is a small chance of those things happening.

As usual with presidential elections it is a choice of the lesser of two evils. Either way it is going to be a long recovery (if there is one) and the young and unskilled are going to suffer.

The middle aged also are going to suffer because for many of us retirement will be delayed because our 401k’s were hard hit by the Great Recession and there is also the eminent collapse of Social Security and Medicare.

9 posted on 07/16/2012 7:43:04 AM PDT by Pontiac (The welfare state must fail because it is contrary to human nature and diminishes the human spirit.)
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To: Joe 6-pack
“Median net worth of people under 35, according to the U.S. Census, fell 37 percent between 2005 and 2010.”

Hello- everyone’s net worth went down that much and more

Blame granny so it's easier to get rid of her later....
I just hope they don't make us dig our own graves....

and btw the boomer generation is NOT the fault the corrupt central banks and government are to blame

10 posted on 07/16/2012 7:43:49 AM PDT by freedommom
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To: SeekAndFind

You and I both know that if it hadn’t been for the ‘youth’ we wouldn’t have had Clinton or obama. I will take some of the responsibility for the ruin of our country for not taking arms, but the gen x’rs and their offspring have put us on a fast track to hell.


11 posted on 07/16/2012 7:49:06 AM PDT by Bob Buchholz
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To: SeekAndFind
Thanks to both parties' progressive/liberal broad spectrum societal destruction, We, the most selfish generation in history, have been having a "FREE" party for ourselves, trashing the place while spending your and our inheritance and then some...how much exactly?

Who cares! We are "Entitled!"

And then we'll all check out of this world and give you kids the bill for the damage!

Why yes, our self esteem is just fine! Thanks for asking.

Oh...and just between the two of us? We really hope that we're gone before the money's gone.
Because when the money runs out? The control kicks in...and then it gets ugly.
...really sorry 'bout that...

12 posted on 07/16/2012 7:51:03 AM PDT by GBA (To understand what is happening to America and why, read The Harbinger by Jonathan Cahn)
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To: cripplecreek

“I’m glad I picked up my great grandmother’s attitude of frugality. When asked if she wanted a microwave oven for her 90th birthday she said “Why? If you’re that hungry, you have bigger problems than how fast you can cook it”.”

Thank you!
a 50 year old boomer, a ‘slow food’ foodie and a hyper frugal ‘waste not want not’ debt free kid of depression era parents, I really really like that quote!
Fregards


13 posted on 07/16/2012 8:31:22 AM PDT by RedStateRocker
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To: RedStateRocker

I’m still using her Techumseh rototiller built around 1947. I hated the wheelbarrow she made me use as a kid. Its almost all sheet metal patches. Its beyond use but it hangs on the wall in the garage.


14 posted on 07/16/2012 8:41:50 AM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: Joe 6-pack
I suspect that Moore's Law may play at least a small role in this

A good theory

Personally, I blame credit cards.

My dad was kibbitzing with one of his buddies about how cheap things were "back in the day", but how they still couldn't afford them. "I didn't have any money, but then again, no one else did either" was their general lament.

And, when I was a kid, a Credit Card was something that was used for emergencies. Period. Mom and Dad paid cash / checks for darn near everything, and I can remember wanting a lot of stuff, but "we just didn't have any money".

Fast forward 30 years. People put Starbucks lattes on their credit cards, and wind up paying 12-20% (or more) interest on a cup of coffee. Then, they wonder how they got into financial trouble.

Moore's law only compounds this vicious circle by accelerating the "you need the latest and greatest" marketing cycle.

15 posted on 07/16/2012 8:52:13 AM PDT by wbill
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To: SeekAndFind
This has been a perpetual problem here on FR for about as long as I can remember. Xers, Millennials, Boomers, and even the Greatest. All bickering amongst themselves re: who's getting screwed.

The truth is that we are all getting screwed one way or another by politicians on both sides. Here lately, the Xers and Millenials are especially vehement about boomers (their parents). They're willing to throw them under the bus, because they are getting screwed and don't like it.

Well join the goddam club! I swear they sound like the OWS crowd sometimes - "we need to take it away from them because we're paying for it" "they got theirs; I want mine!" "they didn't pay anything but reap the benefits of our work!" and on and on and on and on.

What you do about it is to vote conservative. Bitch slap your representatives every chance you get. Forget your acquaintances, relatives and associates that are liberals and Democrats - shun them, demean them - give them no quarter; give them no advantage - EVER. And, when you get screwed, get back up and provide for yourself and make arrangements to make it on your own.

16 posted on 07/16/2012 8:55:54 AM PDT by Gaffer (NOVEMBER !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)
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To: wbill
"Personally, I blame credit cards."

There are a lot of reasons, and that's why I specified my theory that Moore's Law played, "at least a small role."

I see a good number of folks in the Millenial age range lining up for the latest iPad, smart phone, Wiis, X-boxes, etc. They pay well above MSRP just to have the latest, and within a year (often less), are standing in line again.

While a small portion of these folks may actually need to stay on the cutting edge to remain competitive in their respective lines of work, I suspect most of them do so for some type of weird generational status thing or simply for entertainment, and in doing so, invest in things that are certain to rapidly lose value.

17 posted on 07/16/2012 9:08:10 AM PDT by Joe 6-pack (Que me amat, amet et canem meum)
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To: Joe 6-pack

I suspect if we hunted down the numbers that a respectable, and rapidly increasing, majority of the net worth in 2005 of those under 35 would be the equity in their houses.

People over 35 would have more equity, but they would also have more savings and investments built up. They would also have their student loans paid off, carry less CC debt, etc.

Therefore, if we experienced a sudden drop in housing prices, I would expect those under 35 would experience a larger percentage net worth loss.


18 posted on 07/16/2012 9:09:32 AM PDT by Darth Reardon (No offense to drunken sailors)
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To: Joe 6-pack
just to have the latest

Yup, that's exactly right. And "easy money" available on Credit Cards makes that possible. That, and the natural disconnect between just swiping a piece of plastic (payable later) and actually counting out $300 (How long did I work to make this much???) makes the process a whole lot more simple. "I want it, and I can get it, therefore I *will* have it", seems to be the mindset amongst some (most?) of the younger generation.

'Keeping up with the Joneses' isn't a new concept. However, giving darn near anyone the ability to do just that, is - at least for the last generation or so.

19 posted on 07/16/2012 9:22:28 AM PDT by wbill
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To: SeekAndFind
Wealth gap? That is a consequence of working for 30 or 40 years to earn the money. You don't leave high school or college with a personal net worth equal to a person who has worked and saved for 30 or 40 years. That is simply fantasy.
20 posted on 07/16/2012 10:01:50 AM PDT by Myrddin
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To: SeekAndFind
One key reason: their indebted parents are not leaving their jobs, forcing younger people to put careers on hold.

More BS. Their parents have been taxed to death and continue to support their children who can't or won't get off the nest and earn a living. Further, most people no longer have a defined benefit pension. At best, they have a defined contribution pension that is thinly funded with meager amounts of money left after high taxes and supporting those children who refuse to leave the house. It is necessary to continue working much longer to pay the bills.

The current generation wants it both ways. They want parents to leave employment and "make room" for them. At the same time, they don't want to pay the same social security taxes that these displaced parents are paying and that will supplement their meager income from the defined benefit plans.

I turn 56 next month. I have no intention of leaving my employment until I can either no longer perform or I'm room temperature. We have job openings that we can't fill with those whiners wanting job openings. You have to have the ability to do the work. Keeping a seat pan warm won't cut it. Our customers pay for performance not attendance.

21 posted on 07/16/2012 10:10:30 AM PDT by Myrddin
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To: SeekAndFind

Stuff I see with xers and millenials:

Cable bills are ridiculous. Cut that cable and save the 100 to 250 per month.

Smartphones are a major drain. Use the minimum plan.

Learn to cook.

There are way too many xs and ms with really expensive cars. Loans are frequently 700 per month and higher. Drive a used car.
Like we did when we were your age.

Expenditures on video games and video game services chew through lots of cash. Get a life. Go out and meet someone. Go fishing or hunting.


22 posted on 07/16/2012 10:49:34 AM PDT by buffaloguy
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To: moovova

There is an easy way to transfer wealth tax free. All you have to do is pay your children’s bills. Make their mortgage payment, pay their utilities, the only necessity is that you never give the money directly to them. Anyone that dies and lets the government get their assets is an idiot. My great-uncle was an idiot, he let his nest egg get taxed to the tune of paying the state and feds 1.2 million. He was a fu¢ktard in this respect but otherwise a great guy. Still miss him.


23 posted on 07/16/2012 1:07:43 PM PDT by WMarshal (Free citizen, never a subject)
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To: WMarshal

I’m not quite old enough to WANT to think about it a lot, but I’m (we’re) old enough that we should’ve already been prepared for it. We are somewhat, I guess, but it is time we should have it all nailed down completely.

Thanks for the nudge.


24 posted on 07/16/2012 2:13:47 PM PDT by moovova (Ladies & Gentlemen...Pandora has left the box.)
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To: Joe 6-pack
The youth tend to invest a much higher percentage of their disposable income in IT hardware and software that rapidly obsolesces and loses its value.

Yeah but how many of us bought cars that went UP in value 30 yrs ago?

25 posted on 07/16/2012 2:17:26 PM PDT by nascarnation (B)
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To: nascarnation

How many of us bought a new car every year?


26 posted on 07/16/2012 2:20:56 PM PDT by Joe 6-pack (Que me amat, amet et canem meum)
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