Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Take that, you spoilt brats.

Stephen Moore, senior economics writer for Wall Street Journal reports:

Last weekend I attended my niece's high-school graduation from an upscale prep school in Washington, D.C. These are supposed to be events filled with joy, optimism and anticipation of great achievements. But nearly all the kids who stepped to the podium dutifully moaned about how terrified they are of America's future -- yes, even though Barack Obama, whom they all worship and adore, has brought "change they can believe in."

There was broad consensus, says Moore, that this generation (his) has bequeathed to the next a legacy of "greed, global warming, and growing income inequality."

So, was Moore apologetic about it? Was he going to say ‘sorry’ to the next generation?

No way, he says.

I have two teenagers and an 8-year-old, and I can say firsthand that if boomer parents have anything for which to be sorry it's for rearing a generation of pampered kids who've been chauffeured around to soccer leagues since they were 6. This is a generation that has come to regard rising affluence as a basic human right, because that is all it has ever known -- until now. Today's high-school and college students think of iPods, designer cellphones and $599 lap tops as entitlements. They think their future should be as mapped out as unambiguously as the GPS system in their cars. CBS News reported recently that echo boomers spend $170 billion a year -- more than most nations' GDPs -- and nearly every penny of that comes from the wallets of the very parents they now resent. My parents' generation lived in fear of getting polio; many boomers lived in fear of getting sent to the Vietnam War; this generation's notion of hardship is TiVo breaking down.

So there, kiddos. Stop cribbing. Be thankful to your parents.


Rachna said...

Yeah, I agree ! I feel the same need to make my kids value things. But, how does one do it? They don't get everything they ask for but it is a fact that their parents are better off than their grandparents were. And hence they can expect to have a better lifestyle. Besides, we did not have all these gadgets or the money to buy them in our childhood, otherwise we might have been more demanding too :).

Raj said...

Rachna, true. So, it evens out. The point is we don't have to feel guilty.