For the past several years (especially since the Great Recession) I've been seeing an uprising by some people who believe that older Americans (specifically, the "Baby Boomers") are to blame for most of the problems that younger Americans (such as the "Millennials") are having today.Not so.
The way I see it, it's not the boomer generation that's to blame, but a political party who enabled so much corruption and greed beginning over 40 years ago (by conservative Republicans of the previous generation) — and because of another political party (Third Way and New Democrats) who were either too weak and wimpy (or too greedy themselves) to counter the GOP's agenda and political propaganda.
Instead, these "new" Democrats compromised on too many issues while trying to "play nice" with the Republicans, rather than listening to the Progressive Democrats, who took a much stronger stand on issues that mostly benefited ordinary Americans, and not just catered to the super rich and big business. Progressives* (who caucus with the Democrats) have constantly advocated for such things as raising the minimum wage, eliminating tax loopholes and raising the cap for Social Security.
Progressives* today are more like the Democrats of FDR's day (and are not Socialists or Communists) — and so they are not necessarily "far left" as the media labels them. See my post: Democrats Moving Left, not Center. In 1952 Harry Truman said, "The people don't want a phony Democrat". Throughout 4 election cycles over 16 years, Republicans and Democrats alike had voted overwhelming for a Progressive (Democratic) presidential candidate. His name was Franklin Delaware Roosevelt. Since then, politics (which was always corrupt) became that much more (especially when we can't rely on candidates to abide by publicly-funded elections.)
And most of the Democrats today are phony Democrats.
Now, because of corruption and greed in politics (and not because of a certain generation of people), we have an unfair and corrupt tax code, horrible and unfair trade deals, skyrocketing college tuitions, corruption and bias in the courts, prisons for profits, low and stagnant wages (and not "living" wages) and a massive lack of jobs — helped in part by an exodus of domestic jobs going to foreign countries with cheaper labor (countries who also have more lenient or non-existent labor, safety, regulatory and environmental laws).
Because of corruption and greed (at all age levels, in both major political parties), we now have greater cost-of-living expenses, multinational monopolies and monopsonies squeezing us dry, huge budget and trade deficits, gerrymandered congressional districts, voter suppression laws and corrupt and greedy politicians with no moral compass that are driving this country further and further into decline.
And because income and wealth inequality is historically high today, the majority of Americans, including the majority of the Baby Boomers, are also suffering for this.
Here is a recent comment I received for my blog post: White House: Boomers Reason for Declining Work Force:
"You baby boomers are the most selfish generation to ever exist. You destroyed your own children's and grandchildren's future with your short-sighted selfishness and immaturity. And then you expect them to pay for your retirement???? Can you baby boomers just hurry up and drop dead, please?"
And here is a recent comment I read at this post for the Harvard Business Review: The Conversation We Should Be Having About Corporate Taxes:
"With the next generation in the US further burdened by the baby boomer's tendency to rape and pillage the economy and environment for our current consumption, I wouldn't blame the millenials if they refuse to pay the social security tax for us."
I've heard similar sentiments being expressed by younger people for quite a while; and in some aspects, these "Baby Boomer Bashers" were correct in that those Boomers who are also policymakers, economists, think tank wonks and politicians in both major political parties have used generational warfare* to divide and conquer us (Americans of all age groups, generations, political affiliation and religion) to perpetuate the ideology, policies, ideals and strategies of those who were from an earlier generation (the Greatest Generation), going all the way back to the Powell Memo in 1971.
The GOP has been using the strategy of class warfare for decades, dividing all types of people (black and white, middle-class and poor, North and South, makers and takers, women and men, Christians and Atheists, gays and straights, pro-choicers and pro-lifers, etc.) in their attempts to win arguments and sway the public's opinion. The Republicans have used this strategy to divide all classes of people using "wedge issues" (all EXCEPT the super-rich in the top 0.01% and everybody else). And now they and the "Third Way" Democrats (phony Democrats) also use generational warfare* to divide us on issues such as Social Security.
Whereas, the "Baby Boomers" in the Progressive Party (and those like myself) want what greatly benefits most of the people ...and most of the time (average American workers) — and not just those in the top 0.01% and their large multinational corporations. So if you are NOT a Baby Boomer, but constantly vote and advocate for positions that are against your own best economic interests, and by NOT voting for Progressive candidates whenever you can, then don't blame the Baby Boomers like me for all your problems, blame yourself.
This "Boomer" wants to preserve and strengthen programs like Social Security so that YOU TOO will have it when you get older. This "Boomer" wants YOU TOO to earn the "living wages" that I once earned in the 1970s when many more better paying jobs were much more prevalent. This "Boomer" also wants YOU TOO to have the same affordable higher education that was once available to us "Boomers" when we were your age. Most of us "Boomers" didn't rape and pillage this country — and a lot of "Boomers" like myself have advocated for many (if not all) of the same things you want and/or are also against. So don't blame me either.
I am always telling my fellow "Boomers" that I feel so blessed that I was born, and spent most of my working years, during the best days of America's middle-class economy — and that I feel very sorry for those who turned 18 years old in 2008 during the Great Recession. While it might be too late for the "Millenials" today (especially with the escalation of more offshoring, robotics and automation), you can help your children and grand-children to fix income and wealth inequality by voting for Progressive candidates going forward.
If not, when all us Boomers are dead and gone (the last one being born on December 31, 1964), then all those 18-years-olds in 2008 (and those born later) will only have the Millennials (and Gen X) to blame 20 to 30 years from now. Sure, they could still blame us, but by then we won't be around to defend ourselves any longer — and will no longer care.