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Saturday, September 09, 2006

Age of Aquarius: what went wrong?

"Perhaps the Age of Aquarius was a figment, a moment of time in the bizarre imagination of group of Greenwich Village misfits. Sadly, benign misfits do not ordinarily rule the world that has been left to warriors who kill in the name of peace. And we of that generation have grown older, our legacy timeworn. Maybe the young will understand, try to change things, speak out. "

"What Happened to the Age of Aquarius?"
The Beacon (New Jersey)

Second time as farce: boomers, WWII, and the war on terror

"The pining for the glory days of the Good War has now been largely forgotten, but to sift through the cultural detritus of that era is to discover a deep longing for the kind of epic struggle the War on Terror would later provide. The standard view of 9/11 is that it 'changed everything.' But in its rhetoric and symbolism, the WWII nostalgia laid the conceptual groundwork for what was to come—the strange brew of nationalism, militarism and maudlin sentimentality that constitutes post-9/11 culture. "

"The Good War on Terror"
In These Times

In Australia: for aussie boomers, it's never too late to dump your spouse

"The statistics, compiled by AIFS from Australian Bureau of Statistics reports, show the number of men aged 50 to 59 who are divorcing has also almost doubled since 1985, from 10.6 per cent to 19.7 per cent in 2004.

The patterns are similar for women.

In 1985, the number of females aged 50 to 59 granted a divorce was 6.9 per cent. By 2004, that had risen to 14.8 per cent."

"After The Kids Have Split So Do Their Mum and Dad"
Sydney Morning Herald

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Hypocrite thy name is boomer: while drug war raged, boomers kept partying

"Today the question is how come baby-boomers didn’t get the [drug war] message? Last year 250 Arizona adults died from drug abuse and Maryland reported nearly 600 deaths in 2003. Tom Riley with the Office of National Drug Control Policy explains the trend.

It’s not that baby-boomers are starting to use drugs. It’s that they started to use drugs back in the 70’s and 80’s and have continued their drug use – many cases developing into drug dependency.”

Riley says the bodies of the drug-using boomers, who are now in their 50’s and 60’s, aren’t able to handle the abuse any longer."

"Baby-Boomers Experience Consequences of Drug Use"

Do as we say not as we do

The government reported Thursday that 4.4 percent of baby boomers ages 50 to 59 indicated that they had used illicit drugs in the past month. It marks the third consecutive yearly increase recorded for that age group by the National Survey on Drug Use and Health.

Meanwhile, illicit drug use among young teens went down for the third consecutive year — from 11.6 percent in 2002 to 9.9 percent in 2005.

"Drug Abuse Up Among Baby Boomers, Down Among Teens"

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Flower child fascism: boomer drug war "warping our society"

"Encouraging in any manner whatsoever children to turn-in family members to the police for violating the drug laws has an ugly totalitarian aura. It is reminiscent of the similar campaigns in the name of ideological conformity in Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union, and Maoist China, which Americans once regarded as an odious practice unique to police states. That it occurs at all in the United States is an alarming indicator of how the concept of a 'war' on drugs is warping our society. It has no place in an America that values individual liberties--much less to the promotion of 'family values'."

"Collateral Damage: The Wide-Ranging Consequences of America's Drug War"
Cato Institute

New boom in Arizona drug deaths

Increased usage of both prescription drugs and illegal drugs are killing aging baby boomers in Arizona at unprecedented rates, authorities said.

The Arizona Department of Health Services said that over the past decade, the per capita rate for fatal, accidental poisoning by drugs and alcohol among Arizonans ages 45 to 64 has multiplied to 250 in 2005 from 39 in 1995.

"Drugs killing aging baby boomers in Ariz. at unprecedented rates"
KVOA News 4 (Tucson, Arizona)

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Middle class chimera

Getting a bachelor’s degree is the required ticket for entry into the middle class today, but the security once implied in that status is gone. In addition to the exigencies now felt by middle-class Americans of all ages—rising health care costs, soaring home prices and flat or falling incomes—today’s new generation of college grads bear an added vulnerability of massive debt. “Middle class” for a college-educated 20- or 30-something today means carrying five-figure student loan debt. Two-thirds of college graduates borrow money to help pay for school, putting them $20,000 in the red on average. At current interest rates for federal student loans of 6.8 percent, that amounts to a $230 monthly payment for the next 10 years. And for those trying to buy more security with an advanced degree—just try getting ahead without one—leaves today’s aspiring professionals with a combined student loan debt of $46,900 on average.

"College Blues"

Monday, September 04, 2006

You bastards! South Park creators decry boomer-con mendacity

"I have bad news for the GOP regarding that promising new bloc of voters, the South Park Republicans. It turns out they're not Republicans, at least not anymore."

"These voters leaving GOP"
Wilmington Star (North Carolina)

The Generation that "took it all"

"Baby boomers could become known as the generation that took it all, leaving their successors to pay the bills and take the risks the boomers did not have to accept. Look at pensions. Corporate bigwigs (many of them boomers) are protecting their pensions but reducing or eliminating the benefit for younger employees."

"If Boomers Have it All, What's Left?"
New York Times (excerpted)
via Hewitt Associates

In India: editorial rails against boomer-inspired "champagne socialism"

"Simply put, liberal guilt is the queasy feeling that arises in the hearts of the privileged when faced with the predicament of the less advantaged. Sartorial protests apart, it can manifest itself in making a virtue of segregating garbage, shunning plastic (bags, not cards) and donating to non-profit organisations that claim to save the world, the oceans or the hard-up. In extreme cases, there’s a vociferous conversion to vegetarianism."

"Liberal Guilt"
Hindustan Times

In Australia: power-hungry boomers refusing to step aside

"As the nation gets greyer and the baby boomer generation enters its twilight years, the balance of power in Australia is not shifting as people once thought it would. The grey-haired warriors are staying put in their jobs, shutting out younger wannabes and declaring that retirement is for wimps. "

"Retiring is For Wimps"
The Australian

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Boomer buying spree "rare in human experience"

"Not all boomers are rich, of course, but strong economic expansion has created a vast corps of Americans who are used to financial security and comfortable living.

Some cynics suggest it's made us a bit spoiled. I'm not sure about that, but we have grown accustomed to a widespread prosperity that's rare in human experience."

"Boomers: We Can't Help It! Good Times Made Us Buy All The Cool Stuff"
Richmond Time-Dispatch

In New Zealand: appearance is everything for superficial kiwi boomers

"A Southern Cross Healthcare survey asked about 550 members aged over 55 about their attitudes towards ageing.

The survey found that 52 percent of respondents were worried about the physical signs of ageing, while 44 percent were concerned about maintaining their financial situation.

It found that more people were worried about how they will manage their own garden than about the financial security of their children or grandchildren."

"More Worried About Wrinkles Than Money"
Newswire (New Zealand)