Dead Hippie


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Saturday, May 05, 2007

The reaper wore tie-dye: boomer funerals eschew tradition

Inside his Phoenix funeral home, Craig Hansen has re-created a casino where mourners, in honor of the departed, played slot machines. Money dropped into the machines is donated to the deceased's favorite charity.

At another farewell, the funeral director simulated a campsite because the deceased had loved to camp. He pitched a tent and brought in a faux fire.

And, recently, when an armored truck wouldn't fit through the door of the funeral home, the truck was parked in the driveway with a banner that read, "You can't take it with you."

"Baby Boomers Putting New Spin on Funerals"
Arizona Republic

Friday, May 04, 2007

A legacy unravels: the boomer mythos reconsidered

Veering from their cultivated reputation as salubrious middle-agers, Boomers own the highest rates of drug use, suicide, obesity, and diabetes of any U.S. age group, federal statistics show. They also represent the fastest-growing segment of the U.S. prison population.

"When I tell that to audiences," Males says, "I almost get looks of disappointment."

San Francisco Weekly

HT: to reader D. Roberts

Note: DBD mentioned in article.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Reefer Madness redux: boomer hysteria as public policy

The argument that better pot is worse pot has never made much sense to me. There's essentially no risk of a toxic THC dose; the main health hazard from smoking pot comes from inhaling the combustion products. Smoking less of the good stuff (which is what people tend to do) is, if anything, less hazardous than smoking more of the weak stuff. These warnings have to be understood mainly as a rationalization for the hypocrisy of parents (and politicians) who smoked pot in their youth and thought it was no big deal then but feel a need to explain why it is a big deal now.

"This is Pot 2.0"
Hit and Run

Insolvency may imperil boomer retirement

The bottom line is that never before has so many people been so under-prepared for so great a challenge ahead of them. Considering the fact that the majority of Americans save nothing for retirement, it should be no surprise that an estimated 95% of us will not retire financially independent. In addition, baby boomers have been the beneficiaries of society’s medical, technological and educational advancements allowing the life expectancy to expand.

"The Perfect Storm"

Eco-frauds: boomers, smog, and hypocrisy

If her generation was as connected to the Earth as she claims it was, we wouldn't have these environmental problems that seem to be on everybody's mind lately.

Can boomers really claim that connection with nature, then look outside and see the smog clouding Toronto's skies? Is it possible to avoid an oxymoron when speaking of baby boomers in tune with nature? I don't disagree with Herchmer's basic belief: we need to take our kids outside more. We need to get them out of the car, which they spend so much time in (as Herchmer claims).

"Boomers' Natural Connection Found in the Smoggy Air"

The Tribune (Canada)

Monday, April 30, 2007

In Australia: boomer developers target beloved hippie outpost

Nimbin's hippies are gathering for a wake at his cafe and a couple of grey haired women in kaftan tops and cotton pants chat and smoke marijuana, while two men playing chess roll a joint.

"It's a relaxed, alternate town. If you fit in, you fit in," says Kavasilas, who inspects the Reuters business card on the table and declares it would make good filters for his joints.

Nimbin was originally a dairy town, perched on a ridge surrounded by lush valleys. In 1973 the town was on the verge of closing when a group of university students held the Aquarius hippy festival in a nearby paddock.

"Australia's Hippy Capital Fears Freedom At Risk" (Australia)

So much for unity among boomers...

Dems silent on boomer entitlement crisis

On entitlements, it's a dead certainty that the huge bow wave of retiring baby boomers will begin swamping the federal budget during the next president's second term.

The recent Social Security trustees' report forecasts that the current Social Security surplus will turn into a deficit in 2016. Absent any corrective action, the Social Security deficit would then grow steadily year by year into a yawning chasm as millions more boomers retire and begin claiming benefits.

Medicare spending, $408 billion last year, is projected to balloon from $513 billion in 2009 to $862 billion by 2016. Like Social Security, the bill for Medicare would continue to grow larger each year as ever more boomers become beneficiaries.

"Ducking Issues: What Democrats Aren't Saying"
Human Events

Toyota marketing campaign shuns boomers

Toyota Motor Corp. (NYSE: TM) is breaking new ground in marketing for its kitchy Scion XB, the Frigidaire on wheels. To focus narrowly on their target market of of male trendsetters 18-35, (and perhaps to protect the brand from boomers) they are ignoring television and newspaper in favor of online marketing. The new campaign will run on web sites favored by the young and affluent and its own site,, as well as in movie trailers and enthusiast magazines.

"Toyota Thumbing Its Nose At Baby Boomers?"
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